May 2006

National Public Radio
May 29, 2006
All Things Considered: Funeral Protest Ban Targets Anti-Gay Church
VINCENT BLASI appeared on NPR to speak about a new law, meant to stop anti-gay protests at military funerals, that bars any sort of protest within 300 feet of the entrance of a national cemetery and within 150 feet of the cemetery's road for an hour before or after the funeral. Prof. Blasi said that the Respect for America's Fallen Heroes Act is likely too broad to stand up in court. "One of the strongest lessons from our past is that the First Amendment protects scoundrels," he said. "To have this kind of prophylactic law that prohibits all protests in a very large area--that I think is what makes this a problematic law."

The Seattle Times

May 28, 2006
An Omelet with a Healthy Side of Issues

In an interview with Seattle Times columnist Jerry Large, PATRICIA WILLIAMS discussed education, race and immigration. Prof. Williams said that the current immigration debate touches on old issues: "Who is a good, hard worker; who's a cheerful and uncomplaining worker. Those are stereotypes that adhered to African Americans 50 or 60 years ago; that they would do the jobs no one else wanted to do."


May 23, 2006
Intelligence Czar Can Waive SEC Rules

JOHN COFFEE was quoted on a recent memo in which the President gave authority to intelligence czar John Negroponte to suspend SEC rules in the interests of national security. Prof. Coffee speculated that defense contractors might want to use such an exemption to mask secret assignments for the Pentagon or CIA. "What you might hide is investments: You've spent umpteen million dollars that comes out of your working capital to build a plant in Iraq, which the government wants to keep secret ... That's the kind of scenario that would be plausible," Prof. Coffee said.

The Hamilton Spectator

May 24, 2006
Mittal Sweetens Deal for Arcelor
JEFFREY GORDON commented on Mittal Steel and Arcelor, two Canadian companies fighting for control of a third company, Dofasco. Arcelor shifted Dofasco into a foundation designed to shelter shares or assets under the control of a separate board of directors in an attempt to move Dofasco out of Mittal's reach. "It's a bit of an outrage, really," said Prof. Gordon. "It takes control rights away from the shareholders and puts them in the hands of a management group that can't be ousted. It's basically a mechanism ... for ensuring managerial control."

National Law Journal

May 22, 2006
Students Seek Edge in Law School Quest

Dean of Admissions NKONYE IWEREBON appeared in an article about the growing use of admissions consultants by law school applicants. Dean Iwerebon said access to consultants is a concern and that she is troubled by the specter of classrooms filled only with students who have the means to professionally prepare their applications. She added that increasing competition among applicants wanting to get into top law schools has prompted them to try to "improve their odds" by using consultants, which has made it more difficult for her to determine the "authentic individual" from the application package.

The Wall Street Journal
May 18, 2006
Japanese Authorities Step Up Efforts To Stiffen Accounting Independence
CURTIS MILHAUPT '89 was quoted about the recent attempt to improve corporate governance in Japan by returning auditors to their traditional role of financial watchdog. "In the past, the relationship between an auditor and top management was much more important than the complete accuracy of the financials," said Prof. Milhaupt. "Japanese regulators are trying to send a message to the auditing profession that they need to be more independent."

Christian Science Monitor

May 18, 2006
In Duke Case, a Bid to Tilt Public Opinion
JEFFREY FAGAN commented on the rape accusation by a black woman against three white Duke lacrosse players. Prof. Fagan said the high-profile case: "I think these are predictable circuses ... And maybe it's good because it reminds Americans of the difficulties of race in this country."

Financial Times

May 17, 2006
Virtual World Order Creates a New Superpower

A review of Who Controls the Internet? Illusions of a Borderless World, co-authored by TIM WU and Harvard Law's Jack Goldsmith, said of the book: "Beautifully written and intricately argued, the book is likely to become a classic of internet politics and policy."

Los Angeles Times
May 16, 2006
Glassman, a 'Champion' of Investors, to Exit SEC

JOHN COFFEE commented on the announcement that SEC commissioner Cynthia A. Glassman, the longest-serving current member of the Securities and Exchange Commission, plans to resign after her term ends. "I suspect she will serve until a successor is confirmed in order to avoid a stalemated 2-to-2 split," Prof. Coffee said.

New York Law Journal

May 15, 2006
'Probative Similarity': In Honor of Professor Alan Latman

JANE GINSBURG was mentioned in a piece about a copyright article by Prof. Alan Latman of NYU School of Law that was published in the Columbia Law Review six years after his death. Prof. Ginsburg had worked with Prof. Latman, which made Columbia the "obvious candidate" for publishing the influential article.

USA Today

May 11, 2006
For Lay and Skilling, Day of Judgment Near: After 55 witnesses, Closing Arguments begin Monday

JOHN COFFEE was quoted about the Enron trial, in which closing arguments begin on Monday. Prof. Coffee said that the two defendants' decisions to testify showed how skillfully the government presented its case, because "if the prosecution screws up, you don't want to help them out" by putting a defendant on the stand.

The Wall Street Journal

May 10, 2006
Altera Joins Companies Probing Historical Stock-Option Practice

JEFFREY GORDON commented on the recent probe by Altera Corp into its stock-option practices that benefit current Chief Operating Officer Denis M. Berlan. Prof. Gordon said that if Mr. Berlan knew about the direction of the internal review when he sold his shares, the sales could be legally problematic. "It is a fair question that the board ought to investigate ... The board has an obligation to know what he knew and when he knew it."