Archive for December 17th, 2006

Tornado hell… priceless….

I am grateful to Liadnan for drawing my attention (in his blog) to this extraordinary account of the aftermath of the tornado which recently hit London. I will not spoil your pleasure by quoting from it – you just have to read it. It will give you a taste of the feelings which some experience in the wake of a natural disaster. Heart rending…brought tears of laughter to my eyes (you may well experience the same reaction.) This is world class human misery

Read it here

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The right stuff….

Progression from 1st year in UK Law School law degrees

Norman Baird, one of the editors of Consilio,  has published a fascinating study of the progression rates of law students studying law at UK universities.  He collated this data from requests made under the Freedom of Information Act and he has included useful comments from the heads of a number of law schools –  all of whom were invited to comment on the raw data.  It makes interesting reading and will be most useful to all those with an interest in UK legal education.

Norman Baird’s report may be found here 

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Presents to solicitors: giving of….

The unequivocal prohibition on barristers giving presents to solicitors has been a source of comfort to me for many years. I have construed this provision in the professional conduct rules restrictively, to be on the safe side, and thereby, have not seen it appropriate to send solicitors Christmas cards or buy rounds in bars. Yes.. most useful.

Now, following a press release from the newly formed Bar Standards Board, I hear that Charles Hollander QC, the Chairman of the Standards Committee has said:

“In recent years there has been a large expansion in the use of entertainment by barristers to further their interests.

“The Committee is carrying out this consultation in order to form a view as to whether it is in the public interest to restrict hospitality and entertainment, and if so, to what extent. The consultation is deliberately open-ended, so that any and all relevant evidence can be taken into account”.

“We look forward to receiving a wide range of comment and evidence, on which the Committee will base its findings”.

I learn, further, from this news release – “As part of its consultation, the Committee is also inviting evidence on whether or not the unequivocal prohibition on barristers giving presents to solicitors should be maintained, and if not, to what extent the prohibition should be relaxed.”

If you have not seen this document : read here

It will be interesting to see how the BSB handles this matter. I understand that solicitors have been entertaining clients for years with good results. It is all a question of degree… of course.

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Santa gets busted and other nonsense…

Santa has a white Christmas : quite an amusing video animation if you have a few minutes: click here

As usual, on a Saturday morning, I was eating breakfast, sipping espressos and reading the papers. Richard Hammond’s column in the Mirror amused me. He was having a rant about all the ‘specialist’ food shops which are springing up in trendy parts of London. He wrote about the absurdity of going into a butcher who sold ‘rare breeds’ of lamb. Great idea – eat one! Yes… that appealed to my mind this morning, which operates quite independently of the rest of my body on Saturday mornings.

I haven’t quite got the Christmas spirit this year… possibly because of global warming, but I came across this earlier today which went some way to compensating…

This must be one of the most imaginative law suits in recent years…

“Pro se litigant George Allen Ward is suing Arm & Hammer and its corporate parent, Church & Dwight, for $425 million. His theory of liability: failure to warn. The company failed to warn him that if he cooked up THEIR PRODUCT, baking soda, with cocaine, he might end up serving a 200-month prison sentence on crack cocaine charges.

This is just the beginning; the whole complaint is genius. It’s strangely compelling, and it gets better with every page. Also, we think it might fly in the Ninth Circuit”

This is worth looking at on the blog I found it on.

Dumbass story: “A robbery at a Git-N-Go Convenience Store on the south side of Des Moines on Thursday morning was called off for lack of convincing theatrics.

“Well, I could tell he didn’t have a gun,” said Terry Cook, a clerk at the store at 2140 S.E. Park Ave. “I knew it was his finger. I could see his thumb sticking out of his coat pocket.”

The would-be robber, who acted tough and even inserted a harsh expletive in his demand for cash, wanted to argue. It is a gun, he told Cook. No it isn’t, Cook said.”


I find it reassuring that members of our Royal family are familiar with guns.

And just to show that F***wits are taking over in Britain… here is a story about Christmas Health & Safety which shows just how bad the nanny state is getting… Story Source: The Telegraph

For the first time in more than 250 years, children will not be allowed to carry candles at a cathedral service in case their hair catches fire. There is no record of a child going up in flames since the Christingle service began at Chelmsford Cathedral in 1747. However, children this year will carry fluorescent glow sticks rather than the traditional candles set in oranges.

Eric Pickles, the MP for nearby Brentwood and Ongar, criticised the move yesterday, saying Christmas was becoming homogenised, dull and full of earnestness.

“Eventually, they will work out a way to take all the fun out of Christmas,” he said.

“Health and safety will ban everything. I would be kind of interested to hear when the last time an orange and a candle set fire to a child’s hair.”

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