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Monday, December 27, 2004

They're Trying to Build a Prison

Yes, it's very late, and I'm quoting System of a Down lyrics. Two more NYT links before I doze off...

Lock 'em up--the politics of overflowing prisons explained:

The influx of inmates has brought desperately needed jobs to the region and resulted in districts whose economies revolve around prison payrolls and whose politics are dominated by the union that represents corrections officers. The inmates also helped to save political careers in areas where legislative districts were in danger of having to be merged because of shrinking populations. Inmates, as it turned out, were magically transformed into "residents," thanks to a quirk in the census rules that counts them as living at their prisons.

This swells the voting rolls in upstate NY, which allows for more districts up there and in turn allows Republicans to retain a majority in the NY state senate. Good luck getting rid of the mandatory minimums in the Empire State. Even Russell Simmons can't get that done.

Also, when do I get written up in the fashion pages for my Blogspot musings? From an article outing the author of the (fictional) blog Anonymous Lawyer:

Anonymous Lawyer's comments about his view of the ocean from his 20th floor office have led to speculation that he works at Latham & Watkins outside Los Angeles.

"Very good possibility A.L. is one of the corporate partners at L.W. in Costa Mesa," one reader wrote.

Another reader countered: "Step back and ask yourself what partner making a fine six-figure salary with half a brain is going to risk being caught exposing various little secrets of this anonymous firm. My guess is A.L. is a current or former associate at an L.A. or L.A.-area firm."

As it turns out Anonymous Lawyer is Jeremy Blachman, a self-effacing 25-year-old third-year Harvard law student whose firsthand experience of Big Law comes down to a round of recruiting interviews last fall (at which he encountered the aforementioned chocolate-covered pretzels) and three months as a summer associate at a large Manhattan firm. While Anonymous Lawyer has been gloating over his view of the Pacific, Mr. Blachman has never even been to Los Angeles.

Now the guy has abandoned the idea of a legal career to pursue his dream of writing for TV, and the Times write-up certainly can't hurt in that regard. Another blogger's dream come true, I guess.