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Archive for November 3rd, 2009

MEMORANDUM TO ALL STAFF

From: Matt Muttley, Senior Partner
Date: 3rd November 2009

1.  It is with some regret that I have to tell you that the other name partner of our firm has had to hand over the reins to me.  I know that there has been speculation from the ‘lower deck’, as we like to call our junior associate team,  that Mr Dastardly had been extradited to the United States to answer to charges related to the Ponzi scheme initiated by Bernard Madoff.  This, I can tell you, is not the case.

2. Mr Dastardly has been arrested by officers from the Serious and Organised Crime Agency.  It seems that he was on Twitter the other evening and was upset by what he saw – lawyers from this country, the United States and other jurisdictions wasting valuable billable hours twittering away to each other in what he told the SOCA agents, who accompanied officers from a London armed response team,  was an ‘unconscionable and unseemly manner’. Some of these twitterers were even subverting the course of British justice by expressing support for the evasion of superinjunctions.

3. It would seem that this was just too much for Mr Dastardly and, using skills  developed over many years at this firm, hacking into employee email and Facebook accounts,  he hacked into a number of computers at a rival law firm, which shall remain nameless, and caused to be sent from a computer therein,  belonging to a well known partner at that firm, an email to Gordon Brown with a faked superinjunction, purporting to come from the High Court in London. The superinjunction warned Gordon Brown that his support for former prime minister Tony Blair as a candidate for the post of European President could lead to charges being laid against Mr Brown for crimes against humanity and  to cease and desist from such support and, further,  that there was an injunction upon this injunction preventing publication by any means the existence of the first injunction. For good measure, the letter warned Mr Brown not to discuss this with his wife Sarah, who is a well known Twitterer.  The course of history would have been so very different had Gordon Brown not been making a film for his YouTube website when the email came in. The email was read by The Minister of Justice, Jack Straw, who recognised, immediately, for the law was fatally flawed in two respects – respects which are just too embarrassing for me to mention given our reputation for legal excellence – that the email was a forgery and the work of a desperate hacker.

5.  The partners met this morning and unanimously decided that Mr Dastardly had brought the firm into disrepute by making errors of law in his faking of the superinjuction and,  for that reason, he is “Out” and  he has been removed as senior partner and as a partner of this firm. Attached to this email is a superinjunction which, of course, because it has been properly drafted by me, prevents you from discussing this matter.  This email will, of course, be removed from our server within 20 minutes of receipt. You do not need to click the message received window which pops up when you click the email.  We will know when you read it and records of this will kept for the usual training and  termination of employment purposes, as with all electronic and voice communications at the firm,  consistent with the firm’s handbook.

6.  I have decided, under the  executive powers given to me under the new deed of partnership, that the name of the firm shall be changed, with immediate effect, to Megaladon LLP with a new logo;  which I believe better reflects our reputation and standing in the legal profession both in this country and in the United States.   I have attached a working draft of the new logo for your information.

Human Rights SWAT group

I  would like to meet with the members of the Human Right SWAT group to discuss a rather curious case, details of which have been reported today, about a man who was able to claim that his beliefs about climate change entitled him to protection under the Employment Equality (Religion and Belief) Regulations 2003 that covers “any religion, religious belief, or philosophical belief”, forbidding employers to persecute staff on religious grounds.

“Essentially what the judgment says is that a belief in man-made climate change and the alleged resulting moral imperative is capable of being a philosophical belief and is therefore protected by the 2003 religion or belief regulations.” Report

Matt Muttley
Senior Partner, Megaladon LLP

PS: The observant among you will have noted that there is no Paragraph 4. This paragraph has been redacted because it is so secret that I cannot even tell you and I drafted it.  The firm is working on a new ‘Hyperinjunction’ and I am pleased to tell you that I was able to telephone a high court judge only this morning to get an injunction against myself. As you know… at Megaladon – We do the business…every time.

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Interestingly,  while the Law Society Gazette highlights the inequality of legal education in an editorial opinion piece (Rising material inequality is hindering access to the legal profession) Legal Week highlights the fact that law is attracting ever greater numbers of new entrants to university programmes.

Paul Rogerson, editor of The Law Society Gazette,  writes:

Rising university costs are a hindrance to aspiring black lawyers, the Law Society announced at the conclusion of Black History Month. A timely observation, though Chancery Lane might have gone further. With annual tuition fees predicted to rise to £7,000, an issue that this week is viewed through the prism of race must also be observed through the prism of class.

Soon, students who are not fortunate to be the offspring of monied parents will probably have to take on debts of £35,000 just to get a degree, never mind embark on legal training. The editor of this magazine knows for a fact this is going to further inhibit social mobility, because had that been the case 25 years ago he would not have gone to university. No way.

Legal Week reports:

The number of applicants accepted onto law courses grew to a new high this year, according to research published by admissions service UCAS.

The total number starting a law course at university or college in September 2009 increased by 1.2% to 18,394, after the figure passed the 18,000 mark for the first time in 2008.

This is good news for the universities and vocational law schools.  We shall see if these aspiring lawyers get jobs in 3-4 years time.  Maybe the legal landscape will have changed for the better with the coming into force of the Legal Services Act and the change in fortunes of the British and global economy?  We shall see… in time. I suspect… that quite a few will not get the training contract or pupillage they aspire to.

A snippet from Legal Week:

Law professor sues legal blog for $22m in damages: A prominent law professor has launched a claim against Above the Law, alleging the popular US legal blog of racially taunting him.

The case involves coverage of a prominent University of Miami School of Law professor and civil rights advocate Donald Marvin Jones, who was arrested on suspicion of soliciting an undercover officer for sex.

The blog, which is known for its irreverent style, covered the story in October 2007 with a series of posts about Jones, whom it dubbed “The Nutty Professor”.

Jones alleges that the blog’s coverage veered into racism, according to a lawsuit filed in federal court. He alleged that Above the Law portrayed him in a false light, invaded his privacy and infringed the university’s copyright on his faculty photo. Jones is seeking $22m (£13m) in damages.

An online article about the arrest by David Lat, Above the Law’s managing editor (Pictured), “instigated its readers not only to read the post but also to join in what was clearly a viciously racist series of rants” directed at the African-American professor, the suit claims.

Above The Law is a good blog, run by  bright people, so it will be interesting to see if this case has legs.

For the rest of the story….

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Some time ago, ‘Dave’ Cameron made an ‘iron clad’ promise to hold a referendum on the EU. This would have stirred the brains of oak in the Shires and ‘coq au vin’ of the gentleman and lady farmers and bankers of SW1 and W11 in London. These valiant people from a sceptred isle  would have felt, once again, that their type of chap would soon be leading them out of the desert of Europe to a promised land where Union Jacks flew and Britain would again rule the waves, albeit not quite so many… but at least they would rule British waves.

Alas…. an inconvenient Czech called  Václav Klaus has been farting about for some time, holding out against the wishes of 26 other member states and, indeed, the rule of Czech constitutional law – but appears to have had enough personal glory and is about to sign…possibly.

As Dave says … in the Guardian of all places…(how shaming for a  one trick nation Tory):

“But if the treaty is signed, if it is implemented, if it is put in place by all 27 countries, then clearly the situation will have changed and we’ll have to address that changed situation. It won’t be a treaty any more; it will be part of European law.”

Cameron added: “If this treaty becomes law, it becomes law along with all the other treaties that have been passed into European law and we’ll have to explain what a Conservative government would do to try and make sure that Britain had her rights protected and defended properly.”

Unfortunately, as Guido Fawkes’ famous ravening horde of commenters reveals (some of whom are of a Tory disposition – but will vote UKIP, possibly, if Dave doesn’t give them a referendum)  Dave may not have much time.  The feral beasts who run riot through Tory party meetings, fetes and summer balls, singing Jersalem at every opportunity, will not wait and this could be disastrous for Dave and the New Conservative Nice Party.  As a matter of Law, Cameron is right.  It will be too late to have a referendum on the treaty once the treaty is a matter of European law.  We can have a referendum – but it will be a referendum on whether we want to come out of Europe.  This may not be such a brilliant ‘wheeze’ from the financial or economic standpoint and I suspect that Cam & Os have worked this out, even though their arithmetic has been a bit dodgy in the past.

It would appear that Postman Pat (as the new Home Secretary is not so affectionately known in some quarters, predictably) has been wondering down a road towards Damascus and has been seing very bright lights…. searchlights, possibly….. for he has now recanted and has said that something has to be done about Immigration forwith…. immediately and in a way that will re-assure voters likely to drift away to the BNP, UKIP, or the Tories – who, for different reasons are all pretty hot on immigration.

//

We got it wrong on immigration, says Johnson

Was the wonderful headline in the Independent this morning.

“The Home Secretary admitted yesterday the Government had made serious mistakes over immigration and in the aftermath of the 7 July bombings. Alan Johnson confessed Labour had been “maladroit” in its handling of immigration and accepted ministers had ignored for “far too long” the problems that led to a backlog of 450,000 unprocessed claims.”

This for a man who only a few months ago told a Commons Select Committee that he did not “…. “lie awake at night” worrying about Britain’s population reaching 70 million,  this verges on apostasy.

As he was clearly on a roll, after being rolled by scientists in the recent drugs advice fiasco… Johnson pressed on.

The Independent reports….

The Home Secretary also conceded that some anti-terror proposals, such as the detention of suspects for up to 90 days without trial, had gone too far. “That probably was an understandable feeling: that we should be more draconian. But perhaps that wasn’t the right way to go,” he said.

Well…that’s got the pig up and off the sofa…. now let’s see if the Home Office can actually make this one fly. I suspect that we won’t have to hold our breath for  too long before the idea is quietly shelved or the 450,000 unprocessed claim records are lost by some hapless courier company.

By the way… did anyone ever  find those CDs containing 25 million records lost by HM Revenue & Customs (Or was it another department?  DVLA perhaps?) ?

And finally… another story about pigs flying…. except this time the pigs will probably fly off to another bank where they can get bonuses.

The Telegraph reports…. RBS and Lloyds agree to bonus clampdown in return for more taxpayers’ cash

Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group have agreed to dramatic caps on bankers’ bonuses as the price for receiving billions more in taxpayer aid.

With apologies to The Guardian….

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Here is a very useful new blog about the Supreme Court: “This blog is dedicated to the UK Supreme Court, currently known as the House of Lords. The UK Supreme Court is the UK’s highest court; its judgments bind lower courts and thus shape the development of English Law. Since 1399 its judges, the Law Lords, have sat within Parliament. From October 2009, however, they will move to an independent court in the Middlesex Guildhall. To mark this historic development, this blog has been set up to provide commentary on the UK Supreme Court and its judgments.”

(And, pleasingly – they are interested in other UK blogs and have done a number of short features.  Even I get a mention.  I had better sharpen up my act and write a bit more sense. This is a very useful resource and running commentary and analysis of decisions complete with links to judgments and the new press summaries.)

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