Here is a story about his abilities that I think is pretty interesting! And also depressing. Also that.

Warning for death. )
for obviously selfish reasons.

* Devise an open law-school curriculum and put it online.

* Write this.

* Help me sue Yahoo a million billion times.

Jul. 17th, 2015 11:03 pm
Anyway I think Andrew Hussie's either 1) in hibernation beneath a huge pile of Vriska shirts or 2) kidnapped by TOG.

Feb. 20th, 2015 01:10 pm
Last night I had an incredibly nasty and violent dream about a war between a bunch of Kentucky appellate judges and several different groups of fairies/yokai/xian/supernatural creatures - regular American Fairy Art-type fliff-winged fairies, kelpies, tengu, and a small group of exiled sort-of-nāga-kelpies whose Queen was the human hero's BFF throughout most of the story, then backstabbed her to become the final boss.

The human woman defeated her and let her live, but shortly afterwards another group of sort-of-nāga-kelpies killed her, and the others came to the heroine to ask her to help them seek revenge, which she of course did.

me, immediately upon waking: okay that's mostly pretty cool but why the judges

me, ten minutes later: like, i would have understood dan jack combs's presence, but he wasn't even there.

me, twenty minutes later: It was a war between Courts. Fuck this bullshit, I am having my subconscious surgically removed.

Feb. 12th, 2015 11:07 pm
Mom: - just one of those pro se litigants who are like “you and every other lawyer in Kentucky is conspiring to make me lose my small claims case!” And I’m like, "buddy. I don’t know who you are, you’re in some little town in western Kentucky I have literally never even heard of. You are not on my list.”

me: “So you do have a list! I knew it!”

Mom: Yes, my list of people against whom I am conspiring along with the entirety of the Kentucky bar. We all get along so well.

me: “I will have justice! I’m off to file a FOIA request for your list!”

Mom: No, no, we’re private individuals doing this conspiracy, he can’t do a FOIA.
This was basically just spell-checking pleadings and asking me if his “wording made sense.” He didn’t actually usually change his wording if I said it didn’t, he just enjoyed it when I tried to tell him he was lawyering wrong.

When I was thirteen, though, he had a case in which someone had been found to have some illegal material on his work computer. This guy assured Dad that he’d just gotten said illegal material as attachments to spam, and that he hadn’t wanted any of it.

The prosecution gave us copies of the emails in question with full headers, and the headers obviously rendered these documents far too intimidating for Dad. He got home, handed them to me, and asked me to look over them and explain them to me.

I hope that the information which I have presented here has instilled in you an appropriate sense of dread.

The actual illegal stuff had been redacted out, but the “benign” files had not. These included a photo of a woman posing suggestively next to her horse. This image formed an important part of a long-running conversation that Dad’s client had been having with her!

I have never stopped telling my dad that he is lawyering wrong.
Dad: [name] is sitting over there! He ordered ice cream. Should I go talk to him?

Me: He's suing you. Are you allowed to talk to him directly?

Dad: But he's still working for me! He's working for me on the X case and suing me over the Y case.

Me: How is he supposed to get you his report? Like he sends it via counsel?

Dad: I got it in the mail. Should I go over and say hi? What's the protocol, honey?

Mom: *heavy sigh*

Dad: I'm going to go talk to him. *leaves*

Me: If Dad grabs a spoonful of his ice cream and then runs away, we'll know the conversation's gone badly.

Mom: Let's just leave. We came in separate cars, anyway.

Mar. 28th, 2014 06:46 pm
Dad: So this guy who's getting arraigned tomorrow, he's completely deaf.

Mom: Do you have an interpreter?

Dad: No, but I learned sign language. I do this and it means "plea," this and it means "guilty," and there's this gesture like this where I wave my arms and it means "waive your constitutional rights." It's called a swim.

Mom: They have to give you guys an interpreter.

Dad: No! I know sign language!
Me: You're watching criminals again, Mom.

Mom: Yep.

Me: Don't you get enough of that at work?

Mom: No... How could they possibly have shown that video of the woman with Alzheimers to a jury?! There's no way to cross-examine her! I've seen a death penalty case get thrown out over that, and they couldn't re-prosecute! Ugh.

Dec. 7th, 2013 03:33 pm
Mom: So your dad and I were watching this movie last night - it's probably the most realistic legal movie I've ever seen, but it's so sad.

Me: The John Travolta one again?

Mom: No, it's called Justice for All - there's this defense attorney, and he's trying so hard, just throwing himself into it, but of course the justice system is very corrupt, and everything goes wrong. At the end he has a nervous breakdown in the courtroom, screaming that there is no justice.

Me: This is the most realistic legal movie you've ever seen, Mom? - why do you want your daughters to go to law school, again?

Mom: Well... but the judges in this movie are really bad, see; there's this corrupt judge who takes him up in a helicopter and cuts the engine, and says "don't worry, I'll turn it back on before we hit the water" -

Me: Mother, I know full well what the Kentuckian judiciary gets up to! That is not unusual behavior!

Mom: Okay, yeah.
I don't really get into internet arguments over the morality of murder, rape, domestic abuse, and so on. Not even when it happens in the relatively "safe" context of fictional narratives involving cake battles and clown hammers! And should you choose to "step to" me with regard to these topics, I am unlikely to respond.

Because, here's the thing. If I don't know you, you don't have a "right" to my time (or indeed to anyone's, of course) if you're defending things like that to me (or indeed ever, of course) and you clearly don't know what you're talking about.

(Or indeed, even if you do. But you probably don't, or you wouldn't be trying to debate the definition of "sexual assault" with a literally brain-damaged person ostensibly named "Snarp.")

This doesn't constitute cowardice on my part. The reason that I am not going to discuss this subject matter with you is twofold: First, you're probably an asshole.

Second,  I worked for two years at a law firm whose caseload was about half criminal defense work. This means that persons accused of having committed crimes paid us money to get them out of trouble. Some were innocent, but more were guilty. Real-life legal practice is not much like Phoenix Wright.

Now, I personally worked mainly on civil cases, but it was, on occasion, part of my actual job to think and write about violent crime, rape, and sexual assault! To communicate with dangerous people, sometimes in person! Though the best part was when I had to read through sexual predators' online communications, because I was the only one in the office who understood how email headers and IP addresses worked. This was sufficiently scarring to my libido that I think that I am now physically attracted only to "brainships."

What I'm trying to convey is that this job was emotionally tiring at best, and at worst legitimately frightening. At times people showed up in the office angry/intoxicated and apparently desirous of a physical altercation. Once a guy who'd come to beat up the secretary asked to borrow my scissors.

So, because debating the causes and consequences of human evil used to be an activity in which I had no choice but to engage, it's not something I always choose to do in my leisure time. And I am the one who gets to decide how I spend that time! Not you. So, instead of trying to engage me in a tussle about whether your favorite character is "legitimately" a rapist (or whatever it is you're going on about), I ask that you respect my boundaries, step away from the keyboard, and accept that you are just totally wrong.

(Tumblr Crosspost)
I wish there were just one news outlet with a firm policy against running extreme close-ups of people's crying faces after a tragedy, or hassling them into interviews when they're not thinking clearly. Private grief should not be treated as entertainment.

Same with interviewing the perpetrators' families and close friends when they run out of actual news to report. Some of the Boston killers' family members are behaving badly, yeah, but these people are not suspects, and they're probably not competent to make good decisions right now. Giving them a live platform like this could put them in danger of retaliatory violence. Even if you're the kind of creep who's cool with that, I hope you don't want to put the cops through the shit it entails.

Airing the uncle's remark that they were "losers," and then his demand that the remaining guy turn himself in? Yeah, putting shit like that out where the paranoid world-hating shithead might see it is going to make him put down his gun. Fuck whoever decided to run that. I wonder what the cops and national guard on the ground thought about that strategically brilliant maneuver.

The dad and aunt's insistence that they must have been framed and anger towards the cops is a pretty normal reaction, in my experience - especially given that one of the guys has been killed now, and the dad is certainly grieving and angry. Criminals' family members are often less rational than the criminals themselves in terms of stuff like plea bargains. The criminal usually knows s/he's guilty as fuck, but try telling that to his/her mom and dad.

And sure, sometimes this is because the family members feel implicated or responsible, and will convince themselves of any story that makes them feel less so. In the case of a parent/guardian, sometimes it's even because they're paranoid world-hating shitheads themselves, and their kids learned that from them.

But sometimes it's just because they're very loyal and not very astute about emotional stuff. They can't imagine that someone they love would do a thing like this, so they don't believe it, no matter how overwhelming the evidence.
Kankri and Aranea are psychiatrists who are frequently called as expert witnesses. Kankri does only defense work because, when prompted correctly, he's willing to say that just about everyone is unfit for something, or that they will definitely not do whatever it was again because s9mething s9mething unprecedented special circumstances triggers s9mething. He's very cheap, so DB&D use him a lot.

But you really don’t want him in front of a jury, because he causes mistrials.

AG: All twelve jurors were wearing earb8uds for the whole third day!!!!!!!! And Judge, you read Anne 8ishop’s Dark Jewels series in its entirety over the course of Dr. Vantas’s two-day cross-examin8ion. That’s got spiders in it, right, is it any good?

TT: It’s terrible.

AG: 8oooooooo.

On the other hand, it can take three days to depose him, so sometimes he ends up taking the stand anyway because no one can take the time out of their schedules to deal with that shit. His written reports can go more than fifty pages without conveying any actual information. Slick has to go through them and highlight the important parts if he can find them. Sometimes he walks wordlessly out of his office, stabs Karkat, and goes back in.

Aranea does mostly prosecution work and is capable, when presented with any form of extreme or apparently irrational behavior, of rationalizing it as 8eing the product of free will and entirely under the accused’s control. Latula beat her over the head with her skateboard the time she testified that Mituna understood the consequences of his actions when he blew up the Breaded Fried Nutbeast Thinkpan Festival because Cronus was there.

Aranea expends just as many words on this as does Kankri, but Terezi and Vriska have talked her down to a five-sentence limit on her answers when being cross-examined, and she’s reluctantly agreed to put her diagnosis on the first page of the report, even though that “leaves out important context. ::::(” Because of this, she is able to charge eight times as much as Kankri.

She can’t be in the courtroom while he’s testifying; she’s been picking up some bad habits from Vriska and will start mind-controlling him when she gets annoyed. That is grounds for a mistrial in the Commonwealth of Homestuck, as Judge Lalonde is surprised that she needs to remind Dr. Serket. Put him to sleep if you must, but no altering his testimony to insert a “Bel-Air.”

Calliope is for some reason the only court reporter in the county. When depositions go badly certain parties tend to whisper "Caliborn" in her earhole, and the transcript turns into just keyboard mashing and the word "BITCHES." Vriska and Slick once ended up stretching Aranea and Kankri's depositions to nine days like this. Addiction is a powerful thing.

Caliborn's stated profession is "ABOuT A ZILLION SOCKPuPPETS ON TOPIX LOCAL," though it may be that Calliope was the one who stated that. He does have about a zillion sockpuppets on Topix Local, though. State Representative Equius, an example of the genus of state representative who is always sweating and stammering, and whose suits are exclusively rumpled and blue, retains Roxy once a week or so to send off C&Ds about slanderous remarks made about him online.

Caliborn's not the only one on Topix Local who has things to say about him, there's an Equius Is Awful thread that never dies. He only proposes legislation that 1) requires lowbloods to show their ID in more places (movie theaters, the Cullmart dressing rooms), or 2) involves horses. The single popular thing he's done while in office was make it a culling offense to mutilate Tennessee walking horses so they walk prettier. No one's really sure sure how he got elected. Like was this his actual stated platform, what even happened.

He's a horse breeder, of course, and was in constant conniptions over the state in which the pony at Kurloz's horrorfarm was kept. When Nepeta moved in he paid for a complete overhaul of the stable, but not for any repairs to the house. (Its second story is unusable because it's completely overgrown with Gamzee's mushrooms. They're eating through the floors.)
(Previously on Lawstuck: "The Midnight Crew is the worst criminal defense firm in history, Droog, Boxcars & Deuce...")

Kanaya is a family court judge who keeps her chainsaw in the courtroom with her, despite numerous polite requests by the Judicial Conduct Commission. They have yet to actually discipline her for it because she's a family court judge. That's like the third-worst job in the commonwealth after social worker and Karkat.

(Karkat's job description actually says "being stabbed by Slick.")

She's really glad that Kurloz is in jail and Gamzee's a legal adult now, hopes she's out of office by the time Cronus or Eridan somehow figures out How To Relationship, and yeah this is getting sad again. Did I mention that family court is the most depressing fucking thing? *

She hadn't planned to try for a second term, but Vriska's been talking about running against her and like fuck she's going down without a fight on that one. She would still prefer to lose. Unfortunately, her now-permanent state of shell-shock is perceived by others as "a dignified judicial mien," and she lightly chainsawed Eridan at Fructose-Imbued Pseudo-Traditional Nutrition Object Days last September. She has thus rendered herself the only re-electable family court judge in the history of the Commonwealth of Homestuck.

Also, her campaign manager's probably going to be Terezi again because no one else wants to be a campaign manager in a fucking family court race, those things are the worst, and Terezi 1S TH3 B3ST C4MP41GN M4N4G3R. YOU DONT 3V3N KNOW. She also has a massive library of video clips of Vriska mind-controlling witnesses and poking them with pencils and shit.

TT: You'll recall that I did tell you to stick with private practice.

GA: Rose

GA: Hearts Boxcars Was The Only Other Candidate And That Would Have Been The Apocalypse

GA: He Would Have Granted Custody To Whoever Cried In The Most Affecting Manner

GA: Even If The Party In Question Had Appeared For Their 9:00 AM Hearing Drunk And Wearing A Home-Made T-Shirt Saying "I Lost My Little Boy THAKNS OBAMA"

TT: You can't fix the whole world, Kanaya.

GA: You Dont Understand I Dont Want To Anymore

GA: I Just Want To Chainsaw It

Cut for Tavros and Rufioh trying to run a pizza place. )

(Tumblr Crosspost)
The Midnight Crew is the worst criminal defense firm in history, Droog, Boxcars & Deuce. Slick used to be a partner but is now a paralegal because he got disbarred the third time he stabbed a client. (The first couple times were fine because the Homestuck Bar has a "three strikes" rule there.) Scratch is the county attorney, and Terezi and Vriska are Ace Prosecutors.

Aradia's also a paralegal, and she has to go over Slick's stuff to make sure he didn't physically threaten anybody in it. She doesn't really mind threats of emotional harm. Slick has to go over hers and remove any prophecies of doom or stray attempts to sic ghosts on the firm of ENGLISH, BITCH & GNOMES, LLC. She just really hates those guys.

Karkat's the secretary and Sollux is the IT guy, and they are both permanently enraged and drink all the coffee by 10:00 AM every day. Sometimes Jack stabs Karkat for this. Cronus, the crooked contractor and repeat-offender sexual assailant who's always got at least two active cases, thinks Karkat's explosions every time he shows up without an appointment are an adorable come-on.

CD's Gmail password is always just his fucking name with a fucking two-digit number at the end and Sollux is going to set that little shit on fire the next time Terezi correctly guesses the number he swears to Jegus he is 2o done.

When she's not doing something too demanding, Terezi keeps Gmail open in one tab, and every few minutes tries a new combination of numbers. She doesn't actually read his stuff, of course! That would be 4 GROSS V1OL4T1ON OF L3G4L 3TH1CS, and she never commits gross violations. She just emails Karkat requesting "the papers i gave you!!! the BLUE ones they were blue i think" until he catches on.

Nepeta handles accounting and writes all demand letters in-character as Pounce de Leon. )

(Tumblr Crosspost)
I assume it's some sort of a conspiracy between federal appellate court judges and DuckDuckGo.
He created a macro! I also like how, when the Department of Justice dude couldn't resize an image, House offered to help, in his capacity as the nerd in the room.
Dad: I'm going to look at [judge he doesn't like]'s Facebook. Here, do you want to look?

Me: No. He shouldn't have a Facebook account, he's a judge.

Dad: No, he's got one! Look, I'll find it.

Me: He's not allowed to do that.

Dad: Hey! He doesn't have one!

Me: He's not supposed to be on Facebook! He's a judge!

Dad, disappointed: But he breaks rules all the time.

(In Kentucky, at least, judges aren't allowed to use social networking for personal stuff (though it's okay for campaigning). I think the rule is that they can set up an account, but they're not allowed to friend anyone, because it would look problematic if they friended one guy who's arguing in front of them but not the other. Even though the one guy only ever posts pictures of his My Little Pony collection and the judge never sees it because he only goes on there to play Bejeweled. I assume Pottermore is also off the table here.)

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