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October 30, 2011

Sentencing Mad Max finally able to say thanks

After a whirlwind sentencing road warrior three days which included three amazing sentencing get-togethers in three different locations (in three different federal circuits), I am finally back at my home office with a few free moments that finally allow me to say a hearty thanks to all the amazing people who helped put together three amazingly effective and engaging events.  My head is still swimming with all that I learned at each of the events; I am also still giddy not only about victories by the Cards and the Buckeyes while I was a road warrior, but also about the fact that I was able to get out of Philly and home to Ohio in the midst of the October(!?!) snowstorm that has hit the East Coast this weekend.

So much happened at each of the events — and so many people were responsible for treating me so well — that I am certain I will not be able to effectively blog about everything worthy of commentary nor will I be able to adequately thank and congratulate all the lovely people responsible for my terrific experiences.  I can here report, however, something that ought to especially intrigue regular blog readers: for the very first time, I finally met the man behind Supremacy Claus in person (at the Penn Law Review event on Saturday)!

October 30, 2011 at 11:30 AM | Permalink


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The Supremacy is a fictional girl, fresh out of an excellent academic high school education. Prof. Berman met its author. Not kissing up, but Prof. Berman was the most dynamic, and incisive speaker. That charisma carries over into private conversation. I appreciated his spending a great deal of time with a student to help with a research project.

I always enjoy these lawyer academic conferences, exactly the same way I enjoy the shower scene from Psycho, the spine tingling shocks. More on that later.

I have to report that Penn Law was filled with beautiful women. We know that they had a GPA of 3.75+ to get in. They all wore the same thing, a black suit and heels. They zipped along, and were tough to catch. They did not speak, increasing their mystique. I thought I walked in on a Robert Palmer video. As a fan of high horsepower women (not feminists), Penn Law was like a visit to a Ferrari showroom.


Quick highlights.

The number of civil consequences to a criminal conviction is 50,000. I did not have the opportunity to propose that the failure to review any one of these with a client should represent lawyer malpractice, and that any damages to the client from civil consequences should be paid by the defense lawyer. So jump a turnstile in the NY subway. Pay a small fine. Now, get deported. Fish without a license in your teens. Pay the fine, admitting guilt. Now, you cannot get licensed. The Supreme Court has affirmed that these consequences, with far more punitiveness than the original punishment, are regulatory, not punishment subject to Eight Amendment limit.

Heather Mitchell of the Manhattan Institute, not a lawyer, made many of the points you have been hearing from me. I was surprised and delighted she had been invited to this left wing pro-criminal love fest. My respect for the student organizers increased. She was the sole speaker to utter the V word, and repeatedly.

Prosecutor games not reviewed in Crim Pro. Stacking. Sentencing Entrapment. Backward Looking Conspiracies. Race to the Prosecutor.

I controlled myself, all day. I broke down at the end and started yelling, in a session on the War on Drugs. The US government was providing massive price supports to the Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and to the Mexican Cartel. I decided to shut up to avoid getting arrested and to suffer one of the 50,000 civil consequences of a criminal conviction. In a private conversation with the Federal prosecutor, we had some agreements, but he had no awareness of sending a subsidy with 11 numbers to the enemies of the nation. Nor could he ever face that shocking fact.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Oct 30, 2011 8:18:49 PM

Correction: Heather McDonald of the Manhattan Institute. And she does have a JD, making her even braver. She was introduced as a journalist for some reason.


Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Oct 30, 2011 8:34:01 PM

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