The Hatfill Settlement

A number of news outlets are now reporting that Steven Hatfill has settled his Privacy Act lawsuit against the Department of Justice and the FBI. Some of the reports have also suggested that our press statement was perhaps a bit more scolding than usual. Reasonable minds can judge for themselves. Read the rest of this entry »

What I told Dan Rather

If you’re just sick and tired of reading about why the reporter’s shield law currently stalled in the Senate is terrible for the country . . . well, I guess you must be a Reasonable Minds subscriber, because you certainly can’t be sick and tired of reading shield law opposition elsewhere. But if you’re still tuned in on this issue, Dan Rather devoted a segment of his program to it a few nights ago, and it is worth watching online, if only to tease me about it later. Read the rest of this entry »

Justice and the Press

Reasonable Minds readers already know what I think about the proposals in Congress for a “reporter’s shield” law, but the Wall Street Journal was good enough to publish an op-ed I submitted on that subject.

Journal readers, if you found this blog for the first time as a result of today’s op-ed, welcome and please look around. You can find more on the various versions of the shield bill here, here, and here.

Big Trouble for Corporate General Counsel

Law.com brings us this National Law Journal report that a record number of corporate general counsel have been charged with or have pleaded to civil or criminal fraud this year, and the year isn’t even over. What is this record number? Ten! Can you believe that? At this rate, it could be thirteen before the year is out. Fourteen, even! It’s an epidemic. It’s a tsunami. It’s going to bring down the profession, I tell you. Maybe the whole economy.

Obviously, what’s needed is a General Counsel Shield Law, which would allow publicly traded companies to disseminate information to the public without having to tell anyone where the information came from. Read the rest of this entry »

More Media Arrogance (Updated)

I really don’t intend to keep writing about the odious reporter’s shield bill that the media conglomerates are all pushing, but Tuesday’s Los Angeles Times had an editorial so obtuse that it demanded a response. Read the rest of this entry »

On the Passing of Richard Jewell

News came today of the passing of Richard Jewell, comma, . . .

How would you complete the sentence?

Here’s how the obituaries should have started: “Richard Jewell, the security guard who spotted a homemade pipe bomb at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, died of natural causes today at his home in Georgia. Jewell’s alertness — the bomb was concealed in an abandoned knapsack — and his level-headedness in evacuating the area around the bomb have been credited with saving at least 20 lives in the blast that killed one and injured 111.”

That’s what really happened that day in 1996, but of course that’s not the way the obituaries turned out. Read the rest of this entry »

Free Flow of Misinformation

Yesterday, I linked to a Washington Post editorial endorsing H.R. 2102, a bill that would severely limit the obligation of journalists to testify in federal court, even if they have relevant evidence and even if that evidence has nothing to do with the identity of confidential sources. I also posted a previously unpublished op-ed piece that set forth some of the principal problems with the proposed legislation. Today let’s look closely at the arguments the Post presented for the bill. Read the rest of this entry »

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