As I have noted previously, next year I’ll be working as a law clerk. While my judge will be the one calling the shots, I and my co-clerks will be doing a lot of the important research and editing that goes into preparing the thoughtful and impartial legal opinions she strives to produce. It’s important that she be free from any perceived taint of bias as she goes about her work—which means that it’s also important that we be free from any such taint.
You may have noticed the comparative quiet on this blog lately, and, well, these two things are connected. With the end of my time in law school approaching—together with all of the assignments hanging over my head that that implies—I haven’t had the chance to write up this statement. But the policy that I’m announcing with it has actually been in place for a while.
That is, in the interests of maintaining confidence in my impartiality, my judge’s impartiality, and the impartiality of the United States courts, I’m not blogging about political or pending legal questions. Any legal analysis I generate will be for the exclusive and confidential use of my judge; my political opinions I’ll be keeping to myself. The bad puns, the odd sightings from my daily life, and the musings on technology will continue.
In hindsight, I should have taken this line from the day I accepted the job. But what’s done is done, and the best I can do is to uphold the appropriate standard of propriety from now on. Lest anyone try to abduce too much from my past posts, let me restate explicitly a few things that ordinarily should go without saying: My judge is not me, and she has both far more wisdom and far more knowledge of the law than I do; my opinions have been known to change substantially over time, as a detailed inspection of my archives shows; almost all of what I say here is offered as a tentative suggestion, something I put forth to see what counterarguments one could make;—and as a clerk, I will be taking very seriously my responsibility to give my judge unbiased help.
As for the Lab, well, check out the new mindless links and I should have some real content up soon.