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Cronyism 101 at the University of Texas

By Mark Pulliam | Aug 6, 2018

The Burnt Orange Mafia at the University of Texas–the inner circle of overpaid administrators, influence-wielding donors, supplicant vendors, and political hacks who approve UT’s inflated budget in exchange for preferential admission for their (and supporters’) unqualified children–want to raise “protection money” to ensure UT receives friendly treatment in the upcoming legislative session.

Worried about the composition of the Supreme Court, two reforms might ease your angst

By Mike Thompson Jr. | Jul 24, 2018

As the Senate begins another round of debates on whether to appoint a Presidential nominee to the high court, the country deserves a continued debate on the proper role of the courts in our republic. During the last Presidential election Donald Trump campaigned on appointing judges who would follow in the mold of Antonin Scalia. In recent times, the democrats have argued that judges should apply something of an empathy standard when interpreting the constitution, creating a sort of living constitution to keep up with the times.

An Open Letter to the University of Texas Board of Regents

By Mark Pulliam | Jul 20, 2018

Mark Pulliam writes "to express my chagrin, bordering on exasperation, at the continuing hijinks at UT-Austin under the so-called leadership of President Greg Fenves."

Replacing Kennedy

By Michael Thompson Jr. | Jul 5, 2018

As the President considers a new judge to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy he would do well to remember that the Kennedy seat was supposed to go to Judge Robert Bork, a good man who was unjustly attacked and precluded from sitting on the Supreme Court. Conservatives have long recognized Bork should have had that spot.

The End of an Era for One Storm-Chasing Lawyer

By Texans for Lawsuit Reform | Jul 2, 2018

TLR spent the 2015 and 2017 legislative sessions working to fix the problems storm-chasing lawyers were creating for Texas property owners. Fortunately, the Texas Legislature passed a common-sense solution in 2017 to make it harder for these lawyers to file unnecessary lawsuits, while maintaining the strongest insurance consumer protections laws in the United States for Texas property owners.

Letter to the editor: Lawsuits aren't the solution to addressing climate change issues

By Jennifer Harris | Jun 29, 2018

There’s every reason to be alarmed by some personal injury lawyers’ efforts to abuse our courts and cash in on the climate change debate (“Climate Change: A Plea for Leadership and Legislation, Not Litigation,” June 22, 2018). It’s a long running effort dating back to the 1990s but seems to be picking up steam once again.

Law Schools Need a New Governance Model

By Mark Pulliam | Jun 25, 2018

A prior post (entitled “Who Runs the Legal Academy?”) attracted some much-needed attention from other sites, including Overlawyered.com, Instapundit, and the Tom Woods Show. The governance of law schools, although not a secret, is poorly-understood and seldom discussed. This lack of transparency empowers—or at least emboldens—some of the behind-the-scenes influencers to take unreasonable positions and to pursue self-interested goals that are contrary to the ostensible objective of training students to be effective and ethical lawyers. The result is a dysfunctional legal academy.

Climate Change: A Plea For Leadership and Legislation, Not Litigation

By By Melissa Landry, Louisiana Lawsuit Abuse Watch | Jun 22, 2018

Americans are being sold a dangerous bill of goods by those who promise that lawsuits provide a viable solution to addressing coastal erosion, rising sea levels and other challenges associated with global climate change.

Harvey Insurance Claims Should Top $19 Billion

By Albert Betts | Jun 4, 2018

Albert Betts, executive director for the Insurance Council of Texas, says Texans are being harmed by misinformation and half-truths about their recovery.

The Delusion of Good Faith Judging

By Mark Pulliam | Jun 2, 2018

The concept of written legal rules—of the law itself—assumes that their content is fixed and ascertainable. The rule of law likewise depends on citizens having advance notice of what they can and cannot do, pursuant to clear, knowable directives. Legal scholars expend enormous energy pontificating about the appropriate techniques judges should apply in the course of constitutional interpretation: textualism, originalism, and so forth. Libertarian theorists argue strenuously that judges must be given greater authority—through “judicial engagement”—over the political branches. Each day, lawyers across the country trot off to court, briefs in hand, hoping to convince a black-robed judge–enthroned behind a raised, magisterial bench—that the relevant legal rules, properly construed, compel a ruling in favor of their client.

The insurance lobby has destroyed Texas property rights

By Ware V. Wendell | May 23, 2018

Eight months after Hurricane Harvey made landfall, many Texas families still face a long road home. Only 33 percent of home insurance claims have been paid and a staggering 51 percent have been closed with no payment.

Crime Plague in the Alamo City

By Mark Pulliam | May 18, 2018

San Antonio is ill-served by activists posing as law-enforcement officials.

The success of our judicial system begins with you

By Justice Jeff Brown | May 3, 2018

In mid-April, a 4-year-old boy was summoned to jury duty in Pennsylvania but was unable to go because “he has preschool that day.” The situation was a light-hearted reminder that 1) errors do happen and 2) some potential jurors do have legitimate reasons they can’t serve. On the whole, however, jury service is a critical component of our justice system and depends on everyday citizens—those us well beyond our preschool years—showing up and to do our duty.

Has Gorsuch ‘Gone Wobbly’ Already?

By Mark Pulliam | Apr 25, 2018

A Supreme Court decision on immigration that was not expected to be controversial instead attracted wide attention upon its release last week. The reason: Justice Neil Gorsuch, the much-heralded successor to the legendary Antonin Scalia, joined with the High Court’s four liberals to overturn an immigration statute on the grounds that it was “void for vagueness,” over the strenuous dissent of the court’s conservative bloc: Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Anthony Kennedy, and Chief Justice John Roberts.

A Triumph of Textual Analysis: The Texas Supreme Court Tackles the Issue of “Same-Sex” Sexual Harassment

By Mark Pulliam | Apr 10, 2018

Texas’s employment discrimination statute (the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act, codified in the Texas Labor Code at section 21.001 et seq.), like its federal counterpart (Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. section 2000e et seq.), prohibits discrimination on the basis of enumerated characteristics, including “sex.” Accordingly, an employer is forbidden to treat an applicant or employee differently because of that person’s sex. Without a sex-based nexus, the employer’s conduct may be rude, unfair, obnoxious, boorish, or insensitive, but will not constitute illegal sex discrimination.

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