March 29 roundup

by Walter Olson on March 29, 2010

  • “Teen beauty queen portrayed as spoiled brat on ‘Wife Swap’ files $100M lawsuit” [NY Daily News]
  • “Viva el cupcake!” NYC parents and kids protest the Bloomberg administration’s anti-bake-sale rules [Philissa Cramer, GothamSchools] Bill in Congress would thrust federal government much more deeply into school food issues [Al Tompkins, Poynter]
  • For improved disabled access to online resources, look to technical advance, not regulation [Szoka, City Journal]
  • “Ministry of Justice Rolls Out New Measures to Reform U.K. Libel Law” [Legal Week/Law.com] “Success Fees in U.K. Libel Cases to Be Slashed by 90 Percent” [same]
  • “They’re overlawyered. They’re poisoned by lawyers.” (Markopolos critique of SEC, cont’d) [Gordon Smith, Conglomerate]
  • A sentiment open to doubt: Prof. Freedman contends that lawyers’ ethics are higher than doctors’ [Legal Ethics Forum]
  • Quotas for women executives in boardroom and top corporate posts spread in Europe. Maybe someday here too? [NYT "Room for Debate"]
  • Yes to better indigent criminal defense, no to a court order taking over the subject [Greenfield]

{ 3 comments }

1 Jack Wilson 03.29.10 at 10:45 am

“Teen beauty queen portrayed as spoiled brat on ‘Wife Swap’ files $100M lawsuit”

I wonder if she would settle for, say, $1M?

2 nevins 03.29.10 at 3:56 pm

“Quotas for women executives in boardroom and top corporate posts …”
Women should learn from the experience of other groups who have ‘benefited’ from quotas. Everyone know (or at least believes that they know) who the individuals are who are there because of the quota and those who are there for merit. Just because one is on the other side of a perceived barrier does not mean that they are full members of the club. Ways to exclude them and their influence are plenty. Those who got to the top through merit have played the game long enough to know how to marginalize someone without risk of legal backlash.

3 William Nuesslein 03.31.10 at 7:33 am

For Nevins,

Employers would like to have capable employees for their labor dollar, and various employment tests have been used over time to select better candidates for jobs. By definition, employers have no economic incentive to exclude talented women and minorities . Since valid tests almost always discriminate against women and minorities, it is argued that the tests are not valid for these groups and policies are put in play to meet indirect quotas.

But if the tests are valid for all, and there is no evidence against that, quota people will under-perform. The Texaco case of years past comes to mind where affirmative action hires failed to earn subsequent promotions.

“And there’s a legal limit to the snow here, in Camelot.” Ability, such as the ability to play modern basketball, is a given. Legislation may mitigate the disparate impact of group differences with respect to various talents, but we have to recognize that such legislation often comes at great costs, including the besmirching of decent people..

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