Bitter News, 8-19-09

Headlines from the Bitter Newsroom as surprising as the unmasking of the Obama Joker:

• All the crap that’s gone down in law firms over the last year—from layoffs to salary freezes—has the natives restless.  Associates like Matthew Richardson and the contributor of today’s abuse piece typify how people are feeling on the jobs these days: Equal parts paranoid and annoyed. That certainly doesn’t mean they’re not grateful for their jobs.  To the contrary. Mainly, it’s a reaction to partners who are acting like either Thunderdome masters or complete sadists. Solution?  Mandatory partner sabbaticals.  “Just like in academia, partners could take a year off at reduced pay after a number of years of practice.” There’s something to that.  [WSJ Law Blog]

• Matt Nosanchuk: The DOJ’s new gay liaison extraordinaire.  [Washington Post]

• One blogging “skank” in NYC may not have this defense: Hal Turner, “a New Jersey blogger facing charges in two states for allegedly making threats against lawmakers and judges was trained by the FBI on how to be deliberately provocative, his attorney said Tuesday.” Turner was apparently an “agent provocateur” (no, not that kind) from 2002 to 2007 where he learned how to publish information designed to make people act—without crossing the line.  [AP via CBS News]

(News continues below)

• Maybe Bankruptcy is the sexiest practice area.  M&A is getting snubbed lately.  In our Bitter Poll yesterday (below) Entertainment obviously edged the others out, but M&A didn’t get nearly the clicks it may have a few years ago.  “Bankruptcy is the new M&A.” Everyone knows it, and God knows it’s bringing in a ton of cash lately. Weil, Gotshal just crossed the $100 million mark in expenses.  [The Am Law Daily]

• And it’s not like Litigation has much to brag about.  “The hoped-for litigation surge hasn’t materialized, and the fear is that this economy has changed the old rules.” Except for bankruptcy litigation, of course.  Other than that, it’s a litigation recession.  Well, here’s a sexy blend of entertainment and bankruptcy: “’Terminator’ Owners File For Chapter 11” [The National Law Journal]

• Everyone loves a punny judge.  And when you’re trying dry corporate cases all day, who wouldn’t try to spice things up with a little flare?  It happens all the time.  In June, we enjoyed Judge Michael M. Baylson’s trite Bon Jovi song references in his option on the rocker’s trademark suit.  (And how could you avoid “Living on a Prayer” in that situation?) Now Judge Robert Kugler has gone Hollywood in his dismissal of $1 DVD rental kiosk company Redbox’s distribution suit.  It starts with: “Redbox maintains that Universal has otherwise failed to ‘Do the Right Thing’ in seeking…. With the ‘Mercury Rising’ in the relationship… Redbox employees turned to a ‘Cloak and Dagger’ exercise…” And it doesn’t stop til it cruises through Duplicity, To Kill A Mockingbird, Hamlet, Great Expectations, Counselor At Law, The ‘Burbs, The Fast And The Furious, Legal Eagles, Two For The Money, The Real McCoy, Two For The Money, Brüno, and Raising Cain[Deadline Hollywood Daily]

• One more movie reference: University of Louisville men’s basketball coach, Rick Pitino’s extortion/abortion fiasco is When Harry Met Sally meets Fatal Attraction.  [Love Lawyer]

• Bonnie Sweeten, the woman who staged her own abduction in May, was attorney Debbie Carlitz’s paralegal, and now Carlitz is making headlines.  She’s being sued by a former client for not delivering a $100K settlement check and forgetting to mention her law license was about to be suspended.  Her bad.  []

• J. Lo and S. So do dinner dinner, yo.  The Bronx to Long Island.  Jennifer Lopez and husband Marc Anthony hosted Justice Sotomayor for dinner at a “political type” cocktail party.  [Gossip Cop]

• “The verdict is in: Even if Paris Hilton’s film Pledge This! bombed big-time, she won’t have to fork over $8.3 million sought by movie investors because of it.” [Associated Press]

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  • Midwestern L

    Enlightment, thanks

  • Anon.

    Why are most of the links broken?