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Bench Memos

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Judge Taylor Gets an “F”



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Ann Althouse finally had time to read the opinion, and found it quite “shocking.”

I’m truly shocked. It’s like the feeling you have when you’re grading blue books and you realize this one’s going to have to get an F.

I finally had the time today to read the whole opinion in ACLU v. NSA… I mean, that was the whole opinion, right? I kept shuffling the pages around and looking under the table to see if there were some pages I missed…

What the hell? Was there no law clerk who had enough nerve to say, Judge, it can’t go out like this? How do you ever get to the level of arrogance that keeps you from seeing when an opinion is this patently deficient? Where do you acquire the vaulting imagination that allows you think an opinion in this form will even help the side you’re rushing to hand a victory to? I can see slipping into abject carelessness in a low profile case, but this is such a conspicuous case. I simply cannot fathom how a judge with any sense at all, with any assistance from law clerks who were not cowed into ridiculous submission, would file a case in this form.



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