I started volunteering for a group that advocates for a revenue neutral carbon tax. Their main strategies for trying to achieve this goal are: 1) develop relationships with members of congress ("we're betting the ranch on relationships" is one of their unofficial slogans) 2) write letters to the editor and 3) get lots of people to write letters to their congressmen. Is this an effective approach? If not what else could we be doing? Thanks everybody and happy Earth Day! [more inside]
An activist performance artist is currently facing a year in jail for a 15 minute protest in a New York bank; the Manhattan District Attorney’s is charging him and his choir director with “riot in the second degree, menacing in the third degree, unlawful assembly, and two counts of disorderly conduct”. The case is well publicized and has first amendment issues; I’m curious about its economic implications. How much money will New York City spend bringing this case to trial? What if the trial goes past the one hearing? How much does it cost to jail someone for a year? Courtroom use; judge and prosecutor time; trials for other crimes having to start later, appeals: added up, what do these parts of a misdemeanor prosecution cost NYC in cash money?
My girlfriend and I want to do that 'public display of commitment' thing, but we don't want to get married. Heterosexual Civil Partnerships are not yet available in the UK. Can we do it elsewhere with legal status? Or should we wait? [more inside]
I'm a dude going to marry a dude in New York State. Said dude I am going to marry is a resident alien from the UK. Will the UK recognize the marriage? Does he become an American Citizen by marrying him? Does that counteract his UK citizenship? What are my rights, here?
Book suggestion filter! I need to catch up on all the 20th century history I missed because of childhood..... [more inside]
How do corporations and unions influence lawmakers? [more inside]
I would like all new elected and appointed officials -- from Congress all the way on down to appointed officials at the municipal level -- to be required to take a minimum 20 hour course on ethics and civic responsibility. How would I go about getting Congress to pass this as a new law? [more inside]
I'm thinking of creating a political parody website that may step on some toes and/or trademarks. I have a few technical and legal questions about how best to go about this. [more inside]
Recently some controversial legislation was passed by my county board. The opposition is using the time it was passed - early in the morning, after hours of public testimony - as a point of criticism. I am at a loss to understand why this is a talking point. Can you help me understand it? [more inside]
An intern at work is dressing very inappropriately. Is there any way I can tell her nicely to tone it down? [more inside]
Who were these "celebrated authors" James Madison was referring to in The Federalist Paper No. 14? [more inside]
ForA(Best)FriendFilter: What can a smart, idealistic kid do out of college in the DC area which relates to law & the study of the constitution? [more inside]
PoliticsLawFilter: Dick Cheney's lawyer, David Addington, wrote a series of papers/statements/memos that ostensibly change an existing law. How can one lawyer, or even a team of lawyers, change a law by simply writing a memo? Is this even possible? [more inside]
Recent dramas have used (without ambiguity) the name and image of real living figures and events in fiction and film. How this is legally possible? Is it covered by Fair Use? [more inside]
I'm looking for a listing, preferably something with citations of the actual state laws, of when each state changed it's laws to allow for the direct election of electors in the electoral college.
My dear friend wishes to be governor someday of his state. He is certain law school is the "best path" to attain this goal. Those who have gone to law school (and those who have an opinion) is this necessarily true? [more inside]
Would an oath of office be considered a verbal contract with the constituents represented by that office? If so, would violation of that oath be grounds for a class action lawsuit for breach of contract? This came to mind when examining the voting records of Obama and McCain, and noticing that both have missed a significant percentage of votes during this term of Congress, and that the Senate Oath of Office includes the phrase "... and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter..."
Can anyone tell me the percentage of children of illegal immigrants who attend college? Specifically in Texas. We are arguing the HB 104 (in state tuition bill) in my government class and I need to know how many children of illegal immigrants who were not born in the US actually attend institutions of higher education....
Can you think of any examples of "jawboning" from history? [more inside]
Say that a (US) presidential administration was doing something it wasn't supposed to be doing. Could a future presidential administration find this out and prosecute the former administration's officials? [more inside]
Truth in (political) advertising... [more inside]
So there's a grand jury that the special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald has empaneled. 23 members, residents of Wahington D.C. Some questions. [more inside]
When did the practice of refusing to comment on a given issue due to pending litigation become an acceptable response? Is this a fairly recent development -- a result of living in a sue-happy nation? Is it just the vogue rhetoric of avoiding even a minimal amount of accountability? Or is it something else? For the lawyers out there, what are the ramifications of commenting? ... especially with cases like those involving the government?
What's so great about the U.S. constitution? From a political science perspective, a legal perspective, a historical perspective? Non-USians without a written constitution especially invited to reply.
What constitutes treason in your country?
ElectionFairnessFilter. So i just voted (yay) and noticed something odd - a man in the polling place sitting quietly behind a MoveOn PAC sign. I didn't think we in the US could have anyone inside the polling place advocating a specific voting paradigm (even if I do think it's a good paradigm to support), and so I wasn't surprised when a lady complained and an officious-looking man walked over to talk to the seated gentleman - but after a short conversation, they let him stay. Anyone know what gives here? Why would they not ask him to leave?