opinions, everybody's got one...
Saturday, November 09, 2002
giuliani off broadway
The plot sees hero Rudy travelling to Mexico City to consult on anti-crime measures. Is it theatre, carefully choreographed by the City's government or a sincere effort to bring an expertise on zero-tolerance policy law enforcement to Mexico?
tomorrow's news today
This headline caught my eye: Group Opposes Vouchers for Police, Fire Services, from the pages of Future Feed Forward, an information and financial services company that gives us tomorrow's headlines today. Fun Site.
our ninth president, george washington
George Washington was the first President of the United States, or was he? A look at how the USA was governed in the days after the Declaration of Independence sprang up on Metafilter recently. A very interesting post, with some great links and comments.
america's newest supergroup?
Question: What do you get when you cross the Indigo Girls with the Dead Kennedy's?
Answer: An interesting night at Ole Miss.
A stop off on the Spitfire Tour at
Friday, November 08, 2002
English Rule? American Rule? Alaska Rule?
A recent Letter to the Editor of the Wall Street Journal (pdf) raises the point that loser pay laws will shorten the length of litigation, and lessen the overall caseload of our courts, by giving the litigants the incentive to do so. The author correctly points out that the incentive is not currently there. In fact, in many types of circumstances, there is an incentive to file more lawsuits and drag them out.
I have been working against the current for over a year now on researching, drafting and drumming up support for a hybrid law that will achieve the same goals. Although I come at this problem with a different perspective than does the author of the article, I think we both arrive at the same result.
so it's not just me, after all?
Going around the blog circuit... from Stefan to Xeni at Boing Boing is a great excuse for my attitude. It seems that a Japanese survey has shown that I am a cranky old fart because I use the computer... it's not just a character flaw after all!
Thursday, November 07, 2002
how can I convert my company into a Delaware company?
A recent client question, and my response:
Question: I have a Florida LLC, and I wish instead for it to be a Delaware, LLC. What are my options?
Answer: One of the beautiful aspects of Delaware Corporate Law is that it is so flexible and internally consistent. You have several options. One option, that would probably be too burdensome, is that you can create a Delaware LLC, and then sell the Florida assets and contracts to the Delaware company. Another less burdensome option to consider is to create a Delaware LLC (maybe even with the same name as the Florida LLC), and then merge the two companies, leaving the Delaware LLC as the surviving entity. Similarly, you can convert other entities, such as a regular corporation, or an S Corp, or a Close Corp, or a Partnership, or a LLP, into an LLC or one of the other sorts of entities, or amend your existing entity to reflect the changes in your business. We can do many different things to keep the structure of your business in tune with the changing laws and the focus of your business. These transactions should be drafted and/or reviewed by a Delaware Attorney.
Wednesday, November 06, 2002
green card lottery information
If you want to apply for a chance to get a green card, go directly to the INS web site. It's infuriating that there are fake sites out there trying to scam people attempting to immigrant into the USA. If the web site's name doesn't end with a "gov" then you have the wrong place. Here's the official warning about these fake sites from the Federal Trade Commission.
law on tv
I've been keeping my comments to myself regarding David E. Kelley's short lived television show Girls' Club, but if the failure of that show gives him more time to focus upon his writing to The Practice, than maybe his spectacular failure (the show was cancelled after two episodes aired) may turn out to be a good thing. A New York Times columnist contacted Kelley, and wrote about what we might see (NY Times, reg. req'd) on the show this season. One topic that will come up frequently is the erosion of civil rights after September 11th. I'm interested in seeing how that plays out. This weekend, the show takes on the Catholic Church.
Military police are among the Army's most-deployed soldiers, often arriving before and staying longer on-scene than most other troops.
US Army MP School text and picture from ArmyLink Photos,
part of ArmyLink, the official website of Army Public Affairs.
Tuesday, November 05, 2002
birth certificate bloopers
My father's last name is different than mine. It's because of a Polish nurse. That's not intended as an insult to Polish nurses, or Polish people in general. But, it's the truth. Last names are a fairly complex concept in Poland. If you visit this page, and scroll down to the section on Last Names, or Surnames, you see that a polish last name may be spelled differently depending upon whether the name refers to a male, or a female.
When my grandmother arrived at the hospital ready to let my father into the world, the Polish nurse who checked her in spelled her last name Slawska. Unfortunately, my father didn't have a Polish nurse prepare his birth certificate, and his name wasn't adjusted for gender. My father's birth certificate lists his last name as Slawska. As he was gowing up, he used the correct spelling, Slawski. At least, until he got into the Marine Corps, who insisted that he had to use the name indicated his birth certificate. Why he never had his name legally changed, I'm not sure.
Mistakes do happen on birth certificates. A man in Italy recently had a similar problem (via blogdex). His birth certificate incorrectly lists a feminine version of his first name, and also carries the designation "female." He applied to have the erroneous name and gender corrected on the certificate seven years ago, but bureaucracy has conspired to keep the change from happening. When applying for a marriage license, the information on his birth certificate caused the Italian government to deny the license. Wanting to get married, he tried a different approach:
Buonocore was driven to try an unorthodox legal tactic. He appealed to a court in Torre Annunziata, south of Naples, to have his sexual identity overturned under Italy's sex-change law. He's never had a sex change, but no matter. If he could prove he was a he, his lawyers reasoned, the court would have to alter his birth certificate and let him change his name to boot. "It was a trick," he said in an interview. "But it was an open trick."Let this be a cautionary note to all the parents-to-be out there. Check that birth certificate over carefully before checking out of the hospital. Failure to do so may impede your child from getting married sometime in the future. And, when my father gets mentioned on the web (congratulations, Dad!), they spell his name wrong...
pooh and tigger too
I'm not sure what Winnie the Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore, or Tigger would say about the battle over their ownership as intellectual property, but keeping track of the battle is giving me a headache.
manga in the USA
It's one of the hottest businesses in Japan. And, one of the most popular titles is coming to the US, in a phonebook sized edition. Business 2.0 looks at how some parts of Manga comic books might be Lost in Translation. It's a shame, because the originals sound like they have a lot of character. Here's one example of what may not be included in the new release:
DokugappaThat actually sounds like it has a lot of comic potential. I wouldn't call this censorship, but rather a business marketing decision. Though it does raise the question, what might be lost when something is translated into another language or adapted for a different cultural market.
what is FATF?
The Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering was established in 1989 and are currently committed to operate until at least 2004. It is a multinational group that has set out to create standards and regulations designed to meet its goals. Thus far they have published their malignant manifesto... "The Forty Recommendations". This is going to cost more than I can imagine. And the disruptive impact upon regular business will be immeasurable. They have broadened the scope of their proposed regulations to include not only banks, but many other entirely unrelated businesses:
Annex to Recommendation 9: List of Financial Activities undertaken by business or professions which are not financial institutions:
What about the attorney-client privilege? Do you want your attorney to be required to report how much you pay her and for what service ? Where will this data go and how will it be used?
Monday, November 04, 2002
Captain Ezra Lee
From the Commercial Advisor, Nov. 1821
Died, at Lyme, (Connecticut), on the 29th ult.
Captain EZRA LEE, aged 72, a revolutionary officer.?It is not a little remarkable, that this officer is the only man, of which it can be said, that he fought the enemy upon land?upon water?and under the water; the latter mode of warfare was as follows: --
When the British fleet lay in the North River, opposite to the city of New-York, and while general Washington had possession of the city, he was very desirous to be rid of such neighbors. ?A Mr. Bushnell, of Saybrook, (Conn.) who had the genius of a Fulton, constructed a submarine machine, of a conical form, bound together with iron bands, within which one person might sit, and with cranks and skulls, could navigate it to any depth under water.
In the upper part was affixed a vertical screw for the purpose of penetrating ships bottoms, and to this was attached a magazine of powder, within which was a clock, which, upon being set to run any given time, would, when run down, spring a gunlock, and an explosion would follow.
This Marine Turtle, so called, was examined by gen. Washington, and approved; to preserve secrecy, it was experimented within an inclosed yard, over twenty to thirty feet of water, and kept during day-light locked in a vessel?s hold. The brother of the inventor was to be the person to navigate the machine into action, but on sinking it the first time, he declined the service.
Gen. Washington, unwilling to relinquish the object, requested major general Parsons to select a person, in whom he could confide, voluntarily to engage in the enterprise; the latter being well acquainted with the heroic spirit, the patriotism, and the firm and steady courage of the deceased above mentioned, immediately communicated the plan and the offer, which he accepted, observing that his life was at general Washington?s service.
After practicing the machine, until he understood its powers of balancing and moving underwater, a night was fixed upon for the attempt. General Washington, and his associates in the secret, took their stations upon the roof of a house in Broadway, anxiously awaiting the result.
Morning came and no intelligence could be had of the intrepid sub-marine navigator, nor then could the boat who attended him, give any account of him after parting with him the first part of the night.
While these anxious spectators were about to give him up as lost, several barges were seen to start suddenly for Governor?s Island, (then in possession of the British), and proceed towards some object near the Asia ship of the line, --as suddenly they were seen to put about and steer for the Island with springing oars.
In two or three minutes, an explosion took place, from the surface of the water, resembling a water pout, which aroused the whole city and region; the enemy ships too the alarm ? signals were rapidly given ? the ships cut their cables and proceeded to the Hook, with all possible dispatch, sweeping their bottoms with chains, and with difficulty prevented their frighted crews from leaping overboard.
During this scene of consternation, the deceased came to the surface, opened the brass head of his aquatic machine; rose up and gave a signal for the boat to come to him, but they could not reach him, until he descended under water, to avoid the enemy?s shot from the Island, who had discovered and commenced firing in his wake.
Having forced himself against a strong current under water until within reach of the shot, he was taken in tow and landed at the battery amidst a great crowd, and reported to general Washington, who expressed his entire satisfaction, that the object was effected, without the loss of lives.
The deceased was under the Asia?s bottom more than two hours, endeavoring to penetrate her copper, but in vain. He frequently came up under her stern galleries searching for exposed plank, and could hear the sentinels cry. Once he was discovered by the watch on deck, and heard them speculate upon him, but concluded a drifted log had paid them a visit ? he returned to her keel and examined it fore and aft, and then proceed to come to some other ships; but the impossibility of penetrating their coppers, for want of a resisting power, hundreds owed the safety of their lives to this circumstance.
The longest space of time that he could remain under water was two hours ? for a particular description of this submarine curiosity, see Silliman?s journal of arts and sciences.
The deceased, during the war, ever had the confidence and esteem of the commander in chief, and was frequently employed by him on secret missions of importance. He fought with him at Trenton and Monmouth; at Brandywine the hilt of his sword was shot away, and his hat and his coat were penetrated with the enemy?s balls.
On the return of peace, he laid aside the habiliments of war, and returned to his farm, where, like Cincinnatus, he tilled his lands, until called by the great commander in chief to the regions above.
He died without an enemy; he was universally beloved. The suavity of his manners ? evenness of his temper, and correctness of his principles, was proverbial and pleasing to all his acquaintance.
He enjoyed the confidence of his fellow citizens, to an extent almost unparalleled. ? His desk was the repository of deeds, contracts and other evidences of property, as well as the widows and orphans wealth for safekeeping.
He constantly read the papers of the day, and was by many considered to be a political prophet. His christian and moral life was sternly strict; -- his bible his guide and rule of action. "to do unto others, as he would they should do unto him," was his universal maxim and rule of life.
His benevolence and charity was only circumscribed by his means. ? Contented and happy, he was a perfect example of the great blessings which flow from the perfect enjoyment of life, regulated by a christian and moral virtue. He has left a widow, (with whom he has lived 51 years), and a numerous offspring to mourn the loss of one of the best of men.
From Principles and Acts of the Revolution in America: Or, An Attempt To Collect And Preserve Some Of The Speeches, Orations, & Proceedings, With Sketches and Remarks On Men and Things, and Other Fugitive or Neglected Pieces, Belonging to the Revolutionary Period in the United States; Which, Happily, Terminated in the Establishment of Their Liberties: With a View to Represent the Feelings That Prevailed in the "Times That Tried Men's Souls," to Excite a Love of Freedon, and Lead the People to Vigilance, as the Condition on which it is Granted.
Compiled and published in 1822 by H. Niles, Printed by William Ogden Niles.
Sunday, November 03, 2002
cybersleuth training, sir!
I'm not sure why images of Bill Murray and Harold Ramis traveling about Europe in a Winnebago come to mind, from the movie Stripes, when I read about a new cybersleuth training camp being set up in Pittsburgh. It's not like those are the kinds of guys who are going to end up training there to combat cyberterrorism and white-collar crime. OK, so where are they going to get their cybersleuths? And, do they get special urban assault vehicles disguised to look like Winnebagos? Or will they be equipped with something more modern?
like google for the police?
Coplink is a new tool developed in Arizona, and is being used by police officers in Arizona. It's a database that uses information gathered by law enforcement agents, and has the ability to make connections between that information that might elude investigators:
Coplink works by linking and comparing data from new and existing files. For example, Mr. Griffin said, in a Tucson case a man was found lying face down after his throat had been cut and he had been run over by a vehicle. The man was still alive, and before he was taken to a hospital he told people at the scene, "Shorty did it." The name Shorty was put into Coplink and cross-referenced with the victim's personal data, and within minutes the records showed that the two men had been in prison together.The software is being used in an effort to find out more about the movements and activities of the suspects in the Washington area sniping cases prior to their capture.
sex in korea
Sometimes a headline just catches your eye. Like this one; 60,000 S. Koreans desperately want to have 'sex'. A ban against "sex" was recently lifted by the South Korean government.