Friday, January 9, 2009

Bedtime reading

From the TILDS list....

View what is being described as the "great OLC document dump of 2009" here.

Included are such goodies as 2002's, Whether false statements or omissions in Iraq's weapons of mass destruction declaration would constitute a "further material breach" under U.N. Security Resolution 1441, which notes, "[I]t is well established that the word 'and' is capable of more than one construction."

Friday, November 28, 2008

Legal outsourcing

From WSJ, via ATL, "More Legal Work Moves to India, Including 'Sexy Stuff'."

Just for fun, read the comments and see how any industry feels about outsourcing/foreign competition when it intrudes on its profits.

One favorite:
I just can’t believe our worthless bar associations aren’t up in arms about this. But I do have to take a bunch of worthless CLE classes every year, so that’s cool.

Mumbai Attacks

The attacks on Mumbai create a risk/reward opportunity for international law.

The Risk: The U.S. is emerging from seven years of struggling to form a coherent and pragmatic system for dealing with terrorist attacks. The election of Obama, repudiation of torture ("enhanced interrogation"), Guantanamo, and other policies presented a real chance to create a better rule of law for states to apply in dealing with terrorism.

Just as the U.S. was ready to move forward, one of the world's major powers (nuclear at that), a power who shares a contested border region with another major player in international affairs, is facing the same problem. The risk is that India will make many of the same (mistaken) policy choices as the United States did in facing the challenge of these attacks. This would be a grave set-back for creating a real rule of law for dealing with terrorism.

This path would basically affirm the rule that a state can do whatever it deems necessary to fight terrorism, even by acting outside the law.

The Opportunity: If India is brave enough to respond to tragedy with a cool head, and to insist on a response grounded in law, there is an opportunity to create a sound legal system for dealing with attacks of this nature. All the critiques that people have thrown at the U.S. would be put to the test, and new sate practice would emerge.

Of course, there are already certain legal tools (many listed here), but there has not been an effective development of institutions or a comprehensive legal structure to apply to these situations.

The Upshot: The response to these attacks present an opportunity for the world to create an effective rule of law infrastructure for dealing with terrorism.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Higgins Addresses the General Assembly

Rosalyn Higgins' address to the UN General Assembly.

More on Georgia

From the Russian News and Information Agency....

Abkhazia has announced that it is reinforcing its border with Georgia saying that the current situation resembles the run-up to Georgia's invasion into South Ossetia.


BBC reports that about 10,000 Georgians came to a rally to protest against Pres. Saakashvili. The complaint--he used indiscriminate force when Georgia used military force in South Ossetia prior to Russia's invasion.

Monday, October 27, 2008

OIl Prices


Oil has dropped significantly at the same time credit has dried up.

It makes me wonder if speculation did drive the price of oil up to record levels. The inference being that oil was high when futures trading was high. Credit has dried up which makes it harder to engage in massively leveraged futures deals. Oil prices drop.

Entirely circumstantial, and does not look at other variables, but it makes you wonder...