Horizontal Space in Ulysses

If you need blank horizontal space in Ulysses, try using a UTF-8 space character.

Ulysses does not strip blank space where that blank space is a UTF-8 character, like U+2004 (three em space). While this symbol cannot be generated in Ulysses–like s̵t̵r̵i̵k̵e̵t̵h̵r̵o̵u̵g̵h̵ for example–if generated in an external program and copied to Ulysses, it will both be displayed in Ulysses and upon export.

New Treasurer for George Santos

Santos’ best bet now is to appoint a Portuguese-speaking treasurer living in a small town in Brazil. FEC inquiries would have to be translated; int’l mail would be lost or not delivered, and there is no requirement that a campaign treasurer speak English or live in the US.

Killer Cops

If the Memphis killer cops had been white, the country would be in flames.

A Perfect Day for an Exorcism

In order to expel evil from her home after the attempt on her husband’s life, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi hosted an exorcism.

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/nancy-pelosi-priest-exorcism-husband/

The Nature of the Law

Monterey Park Motive

A bitter, lonely old man with access to an assault weapon decided to share the pain of loneliness and rejection with the regulars at the dance studio where he had gone for companionship.

The $750,000 Santos Mystery Solved

Drumroll please:

the mystery of the Santos $750,000 campaign contribution solved.

The $750,000 Santos Mystery Solved

Drumroll please:

the mystery of the Santos $750,000 campaign contribution solved.

santos #campaignfinance #santos

Lawyers: How to Differentiate

Lawyers fail to monetize their networks. This often has value. Instead, lawyers pretend that it doesn’t exist or is inaccessible, even as the Internet has proven over and over that networks have value. The network itself is proof of that value, but if you pretend it doesn’t exist, then there is no value. Look at your network and capitalize on it.

Collateral Damage

“Vaccines saved lives and flattened the curve. Sure, there was collateral damage like Hamlin and Presley, but there was collateral damage in Baghdad too and no one said ‘boo.’”

Lawyers: How to Differentiate

Lawyers fail to monetize their networks. This often has value. Instead, lawyers pretend that it doesn’t exist or is inaccessible, even as the Internet has proven over and over that networks have value. The network is proof of that value, but if you pretend it doesn’t exist, then there is a failure of value. Look at your network and capitalize on it.

Give Santos a Break

OK, he lied. He’s not Jewish, his grandparents had nothing to do with the Holocaust, he didn’t work at Goldman Sachs or even graduate from college.

So what? Let’s judge him on his performance rather than on whom he once claimed to be. Obviously, this man has skills: he ran a successful, federal congressional campaign and won as someone who had never held any kind of political office.

The fact is that no one is safe while the Congress is in session. Santos cannot possibly do worse than others who have held the office. If anything, his “embellishments” will keep him humble, a character quality otherwise sorely lacking amongst his new peers.

Riyals, Rubles or Renminbi

No one–except the US–is happy with the fact that the dollar is the world’s reserve currency. Remove its status and Europe will be happy to buy riyals, rubles or renminbi to purchase oil.

George Santos: American

Really, what is more American than the grift?

George Santos “embellished” his resumé, not worrying about the fact that identity politics trumps even outright lies. Santos claims to be Jewish, biracial, and finding one box unchecked, gay. He is Latino enough and there are Holocaust survivors in his family tree.

A claimed 9/11 death in the family makes up for a lack of military service, and when the New York Times finally looked into his background and uncovered his failure to graduate from college the fact that Santos is a high-school dropout was lost in the noise.

Shilling for sympathy, Santos had his mother die twice. He started a charity for animals and pocketed the cash, knowing that dogs and cats don’t complain. He is a liar and shameless, as any good grifter must be. None of this prevented his election to the 117th Congress.

If anything, he is the perfect candidate.

Give Santos a Break

OK, he lied. He’s not Jewish, his grandparents had nothing to do with the Holocaust, he didn’t work at Goldman Sachs or even graduate from college.

So what? Let’s judge him on his performance rather than on whom he once claimed to be. Obviously, this man has skills: he ran a successful, federal congressional campaign and won as someone who had never held any kind of political office.

The fact is that no one is safe while the Congress is in session. Santos cannot possibly do worse than others who have held the office. If anything, his “embellishments” will keep him humble, a character quality otherwise sorely lacking amongst his new peers.

Cali’s New Evidentiary Rule

No longer can rap lyrics be held against their author in a criminal trial, a new California law tells us.

Many would assert that rap glorifies the thug lifestyle, though arguments will ensue as to whether that lifestyle is merely a fashion statement akin to the “heroin chic” that glamour magazines pushed in the 90’s.

Still, violence by and against rap stars seems to be part of that world. Some of these killings, like the assassinations of Tupac and Biggie. The former CEO of Death Row Records, Suge Knight, is himself in prison, serving a lengthy term for murder.

Some would question whether rap lyrics’ discussion of violence is nothing more than an elaborate pose. After all, didn’t white rapper Vanilla Ice sing of prowling the streets of Miami with a 9mm handgun?

A prosecutor would be eager to use such lyrics in a criminal prosecution. After all, Google searches for “how to dispose of a body” can and are introduced as evidence of premeditation.

Hollywood knows not a little about make-believe and saw this as a dangerous trend. Hence, the new protective evidentiary rule.

But there’s nothing new about the use of literature in criminal cases. Kawashima Yoshiko was a member of the Chinese imperial family who, not entirely unsurprisingly, cast her lot with the Japanese occupiers of the puppet state of Manchuoko, as they had restored her family to a much-reduced, Japanese-controlled throne.

She spoke fluent Japanese, was raised in Japan for a time and commanded an army.

And she was trans, deciding that she would no longer be a woman. “Yoshiko” is her dead name, she adopted the name “Ryosuke” as her male name.

Accused of treason after the fall of Japan and the second fall of the Qing Imperial House, she was tried in a Chinese court, where a novel about her life was entered into evidence. Not a record or a report: a novel. A novel not written by Ryosuke and fictionalized. No matter: she was convicted and shot.

I doubt that the California legislators considered the facts of her case when considering the new legislation. The new evidentiary rule is largely symbolic since a judge may waive it and allow song lyrics to be considered by the jury.

And presumably, novels as well.

Read more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yoshiko_Kawashima

Horizontal Space in Ulysses

If you need blank horizontal space in Ulysses, try using a UTF-8 space character.

Ulysses does not strip blank space where that blank space is a UTF-8 character, like U+2004 (three em space). While this symbol cannot be generated in Ulysses–like s̵t̵r̵i̵k̵e̵t̵h̵r̵o̵u̵g̵h̵ for example–if generated in an external program and copied to Ulysses, it will both be displayed in Ulysses and upon export.

Dobbs Leak Investigation Update

Militarized Police

If anyone doubts how militarized US law enforcement has become, look at these badged, armed idiots showing the results of their posse’s patrol.

Dark Forces

Apparently, this is still needed since the conspiracy theorists have suggested that dark forces have secretly united to co-sign Samuel Bankman-Fried’s symbolic bond.

There was no requirement that the personal surety bond–remember, not corporate surety–be signed by those whose net worth were sufficient to match the inflated bond amount. Because it’s a personal surety bond, the amount is theater. Not a cent was required to be paid. Not one thin dime. If it were a corporate surety bond, he’d still be in the can.

Schooling for Seniors

While previously I focused on Southern Illinois University’s “Returning Scholar Program” and its $70/semester cost, the trend of seniors returning to school is picking up.

Here’s an orientation session for senior “scholars” in Galway:

https://www.advertiser.ie/galway/article/133339/university-of-galway-to-hold-information-event-for-mature-students

Stackexchange Editor Problem

How to Find a Lawyer Overseas

Need a lawyer overseas? How do you find one?

It really depends on the country and the type of case. For BigLaw, see if a national firm has a presence in a foreign country.

For criminal cases, use the NACDL directory. The Big 4 are repeating history and practicing law again–remember Anderson Legal?

A foreign connection does not a foreign case make. If trial venue is in the US, a need to take evidence abroad does not convert your case into a foreign one.

Beware of foreign lawyers who think they know US procedure. If you haven’t been paid yourself, don’t even bother.

Expect a lot of irrelevant hocus pocus.

Never notarize a document in Hong Kong. Use 28 USC 1746 whenever possible; save yourself a trip to the Embassy and the thousands local Hong Kong lawyers will demand for no good reason.

The Santos Protocol

A New Way to Find a Job

Today’s job hunt should start with careful invention following the example of Congressman George Santos (R.NY) and the preparation of a resumé that need not align with fact.

In this post-truth, Santos Protocol, Inventing Anna world, a fact is whatever you claim it to be.

Disagreement can be shrugged off as opinion and fact-checkers mere haters.

A good legend avoids mentioning licenses that might be verified. A refutation can be met with the rejoinder that typos, mis-spellings and apostrophe’s often lead to confusion, whether this has applicability to your name or not.

Contractors are never employees and NDA’s can cover as much time as you like.The former status can be used to claim a wide range of affiliations, the latter provides cover for time periods spent unemployed.

The Santos Protocol: you can be anyone. You are anyone. Fiction is narrative and you are entitled to your own truth. And moreover:

A good lie is better than the truth.

The Santos Protocol

A New Way to Find a Job

Today’s job hunt should start with careful invention following the example of Congressman George Santos (R.NY) and the preparation of a resumé that need not carefully align with facts.

In this post-truth, Santos Protocol, Inventing Anna world, a fact is whatever you claim it to be.

Disagreement can be shrugged off as opinion and fact-checkers mere haters.

A good legend avoids mentioning licenses that might be verified. A refutation can be met with the rejoinder that typos, mis-spellings and apostrophe’s often lead to confusion, whether this has applicability to your name or not.

Contractors are never employees and NDA’s can cover as much time as you like.The former status can be used to claim a wide range of affiliations, the latter provides cover for time periods spent unemployed.

The Santos Protocol: you can be anyone. You are anyone. Fiction is narrative and you are entitled to your own truth. And moreover:

A good lie is better than the truth.

How an Apostrophe Almost Landed Me in Jail

John Delorean

I feel for those whose surnames include a ‘de, di, la’, an ‘al-’, ‘el’, ‘ben’ or ‘ibn.’ Or ‘von’. And of course, anyone who has the misfortune to have an apostrophe in their name. I feel for you.

John DeLorean (not De Lorean, which would put him in this select group) was on trial in federal court in the Eastern District of Michigan during a time when I had several cases in the same building. Every now and then I’d stick my head into the DeLorean trial—you didn’t get a sense of how tall DeLorean was when you saw him on television, but in the courtroom with his height and shock of prematurely white hair he was perhaps the most distinguished looking defendant I had ever seen.

He had a car company in Ireland—no stranger to the apostrophe, he—and I couldn’t help thinking that the Michigan venue was chosen to punish DeLorean as much for having the gall to compete with American car companies as anything else.

DeLorean was acquitted, an extremely rare occurrence in federal court during the past half-century. The criminal rules of procedure are slanted heavily towards the prosecution in federal court, but this is not the time to write about that unfairness. This is about an apostrophe.

BCCI

Few know that the many-tentacled criminal case against the Bank of Credit and Commerce International first went to trial in Detroit. I represented one of the defendants. BCCI was a bank founded by a Pakistani mystic and had branches in America, Europe and Asia.

The bank did not have a license to do business in Saudi Arabia, but an expert witness later noted the fact that despite this deficiency, many members of the Saudi royal family had accounts at the branch in Riyadh. At that time, he said, Saudi banking laws were mostly cosmetic.

The main allegation in the American criminal prosecution of BCCI was that the bank laundered drug money. My case involved the owner of a truck that allegedly was the vehicle used to deliver ten kilos of cocaine to a group of Chaldeans (the term then used for Iraqi Christians in Detroit) who sold it from their bodegas. The money was then collected and transferred to the American branch of BCCI in Tampa.

The first criminal prosecution then, took place in Detroit, where DEA agents had tracked my client’s truck and seized it when it arrived to offload its Colombian merchandise.

Most people don’t realize how local the practice of law is. Lawyers in every state, and sometimes even within the same state, raise barriers to lawyers from out of state. I was coming from Miami, a snowless city three hours away by airplane. I was suspect.

These not-so-warm feelings extended to the local judges, who were promoted from the same pool of suspicious lawyers. It is only when judges join the multi-state federal courts of appeal that these ill feelings start, only start, to dissipate. They never disappear entirely.

Whenever I can be admitted to practice locally, I’ll always fill out the paperwork and pay the fee in an attempt to avoid the local prejudice. Sometimes this works, but more often than not, it doesn’t.

The Clerk’s office in Detroit would admit me to practice for a ten dollar bill and I would get a pretty engraved certificate that I could put up on the wall in my office, the one with the picture of the red jeep I brought from Panama, the one with the DoT safety exemption, though they did make me get rid of the split rim tires.

When I returned to Miami, I put the beautiful new certificate of my eligibility to practice law before the judges of the Eastern District of Michigan in a glass frame and hung the frame on the wall. Were most of my clients not already in jail, they surely would have been impressed by this official document. Every now and then I would clean the dust off the glass if the accumulation made it hard to read.

The Broken Frame

The criminal justice system is a process. Arrests are the intake, then the poor accused journey through the federal system until they are convicted and sent to federal prison. The system waits for no one. A client, arrested in Detroit on another case, asked me to represent him.

I prepared a document of representation, called a Notice of Appearance and sent it by Federal Express to the Detroit courthouse on West Lafayette Boulevard, to the attention of the same Clerk’s office that a few months before had been happy to receive my ten dollars.

A few days later, I received a call from the judge’s clerk. He told me that the judge had prepared a Rule to Show Cause and wanted it read to me personally, so that I could not claim that I had not received it.

The Clerk started reading. “This Cause having come before the Court sua sponte (that is, at its own initiative) in the matter of Michael O’Kane’s filing of a Notice of Appearance in this matter, a rule to show cause is hereby issued why he should not be held in contempt of court for attempting to file a Notice of Appearance while not a member of the bar of this court, a full and thorough inquiry into the books and records of the Office of Clerk of Court having been conducted which show that he has never been admitted to practice in this court. Done and ordered in chambers, in Detroit, Michigan, this 10th day of September, 19XX.”

I tried to tell the judge’s clerk that I was admitted but he cut me off. “There’s no point in arguing,” he said, “you will have to make a formal application to the court.” Federal judges can put you in jail and in a criminal case—which this technically was—they can send the Marshals to pick you up anywhere in the country, even in Guam.

I imagined the 30 hour bus ride to Michigan, sitting with shackles around my ankles behind an iron grate behind the driver and two men with shotguns. Prosecutors call this “diesel therapy,” a form of torture. I had made no more enemies in Detroit than I had in other new cities, so I had no illusions: the judge would be happy to send me to jail as a warning to others.

What stood between me and a stint in federal prison—there’s one near the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor—was a pretty certificate behind a glass frame on the wall. I had no other proof.

The Burden of Proof

The certificate eventually came out from behind the glass only partially defaced, because a corner had fused to the glass. The solution was to break the glass, like you might do to get an axe in case of a fire. I have always wondered what you would do with an axe, standing in the middle of a burning building. Start vandalizing burning walls? What good would that do? What good is an axe against metal doors, anyway?

But break the glass I did, in an effort to put out this judicial fire. I had to make a photocopy of the certificate; bits of glass reflected the light while on the glass platen giving the effect of glitter. I tried to send a fax to the clerk’s office but they informed me they did not take faxes from out-of-state attorneys.

I explained that I was a locally-admitted attorney who was out of state and they simply repeated that out of state attorneys were not allowed to send faxes. They did offer the helpful suggestion that I call the judge’s chambers; but the helpful suggestion turned out to be less than useful when I reached an answering machine.

I thought that all I needed to do was send a copy of the certificate to the judge, but I was not to get off so easy. The clerk might misfile the certificate or not know what to do with it. After all, the Office of the Clerk had already reported, after thorough search no less, that the pretty certificate did not exist. Given that there was an official finding that the certificate did not exist, the fact that I held it in my hand was irrelevant. The judicial finding controls.

Pleading

To file the a copy of the certificate, with its glitter and all, I had to prepare a pleading describing what had happened. As I didn’t know what happened except that the certificate in my hand was deemed not to exist, I had to argue that it did exist after all.

But I had to do so in a polite way, apologize for any inconvenience that I had caused the court and opposing counsel—the fact that I had made no mistake did not excuse me from the need for an apology for the lack of an apology would weigh heavily on appeal given the presumption of correctness of a lower court’s findings, especially after thorough inquiry.

I made five copies, included a self-addressed stamped envelope to receive a stamped copy of the pleading and went to the Federal Express office at the quiosque on 27th Avenue and US 1, just across the street from the Shell gas station.

We Don’t Make Mistakes

Officially, I never heard the end of it. There was no ruling from the judge finding that the pretty certificate in fact existed, nor an order quashing the Rule to Show Cause.

I wasn’t satisfied. I asked a friend to visit the Clerk’s office on my behalf in an effort to try to figure out what had happened. A few days later, he called.

“It’s the apostrophe in your name,” he said. They alphabetized it as if it were a letter, so that O’K comes before OK. But the clerk that searched went right to the K’s and didn’t look at the apostrophes. Your name didn’t come up, so they told the judge who had asked if a certain Miami lawyer was admitted.

They couldn’t admit their mistake because if they did; then every time the Clerk’s office made thorough inquiry lawyers could claim that a mistake had been made, “just like in the O’Kane apostrophe case.” So the best course was to say nothing more, do nothing more and hope that the matter would be forgotten.

Yes, I was out of pocket the cost of Fedex and long distance calls and I had spent a worried afternoon drafting the pleading, but so what? I should be happy I wasn’t dragged to Michigan by the U.S. Marshal and forced to sit shackled behind the two marshals with shotguns.

There was no order, so there was nothing to appeal. And no, I shouldn’t expect an apology. “We don’t make mistakes.

You asked, We quacked

Duck 2