Thursday, July 5, 2012

Posner, Posner, Posner, Posner

One of the common criticisms of this blog is that we spend too much time talking about Wisconsin. If you scroll down and look at the "labels" section on the right, you'll see that we've labeled over 40 posts with the "Wisconsin" tag, even though this is ostensibly a law blog and neither us regularly practices law there (although Mr. Gillette is a member of the Wisconsin bar, I believe, and both of us spent our formative years living there).

This is all preface to pointing out that we have a strange new obsession: Judge Richard Posner. I suppose it makes some sense; after all, we did sort of steal the title of his blog.

So, two notes to keep the obsession going:

(1) Mr. Gillette and I have been arguing about whether Judge Posner is "truly a conservative" ever since a mystery reader emailed me to ask why Judge Posner seems to be emerging as a critic of the conservative wing of the Supreme Court. Turns out, this question has occurred to others as well, including Nina Totenberg at NPR. For some reason, however, she did not email me with her question. Instead she went ahead and asked Judge Posner himself. Here's his response:
[T]here's been a real deterioration in conservative thinking. And that has to led people to re-examine and modify their thinking. I've become less conservative since the Republican Party started becoming goofy.
Well, that's one theory I guess. I still like my explanations better.

(2) In my recent update on the Case of the Infringing Cookies, I noted that Judge Posner had agreed to act as the trial judge in that patent case. Shortly after my post, Judge Posner came out with a rather shocking order canceling the looming trial in a high-profile patent case between Apple and Motorola. Essentially, he ruled that all the damages experts were full of it, so no damages could be proven, and that no injunction was appropriate; thus, even if the patents at issue were found valid and infringed, neither party had a remedy—so the case is moot. Bye everyone! I do have a background in patent litigation, and I must say I've never run across a similar ruling.

In any event, you have to wonder if the plaintiffs in the Case of the Infringing Cookies regret agreeing to let Judge Posner take over the case.

That's all the Posner news ... for now.

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