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Messages - NonTradInSATX

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Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Where would you go?
« on: February 03, 2011, 08:02:31 AM »
Financials are not that huge of a concern either.  For example, I'm not strongly considering going to University of the Pacific to save the money.

Okay, if you actually donít care about location, then all I did was a quick comparison of bar, employment and cost numbers and these stood out:

1-Colorado (#38) - Exceptional numbers for Bar passage, passage vs state average, employment and cost.  Offers lots of aid.
2-Washington and Lee (#34) - Better bar passage and passage vs state avg than W&M.  Offers more aid.
3-William and Mary (#28) - Lower cost and higher US News rank than W&L.

Close Runner up - Ohio (#34) - Great bar passage and employment numbers, higher on the cost end.  Offers highest percentage of aid on list.

I know you only got scholarship offers from those 2 you mentioned, but some people have had success negotiating for money.  It might not hurt to ask politely and mention the steep discounts other schools gave you (no need to mention the rankings).

Hopefully this jogs some thoughts for you, good luck!

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: Legal Theories on the Health Care bill?
« on: February 03, 2011, 06:51:57 AM »
Liberty U. said basically said that the decision not to purchase health insurance is an activity and therefore it falls under the Commerce Clause.

An interesting view of things, not making a decision to undergo an activity is an activity in and of itself. 

You could argue that some young people without health issues have never needed insurance and never really considered it, therefore it is inactivity and not an active decision to NOT buy insurance.  These people could then face a regulatory penalty or tax on that inactivity.  This would essentially be punishment for NOT doing something.

By the way, the beautiful thing about the South Dakota law is that the legislature is trying to prove that they can't mandate the purchase of a firearm when, as a state government, they probably can.

Interesting point, is there no legal limit on a state to prevent forcing citizens to purchase certain goods/services?

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Where would you go?
« on: February 02, 2011, 08:50:53 PM »
Thats fine, it just factors into the decision for regional schools.  What about the financial issue?  There is discussion to be had on how far you go down in the rankings to avoid massive law school debt.  After all, the major problem with a JD these days isnt unemployment, it's not getting employed with enough salary to cover your debts.

Sorry to confuse everyone with mentioning where I'm from.  I'm impartial to wherever I end up.  I would love to work in California, but would also be happy in D.C, Boston, NY, Philly, Ohio, etc.  Location isn't the issue.  If I were forced to chose based entirely on location though, I would choose California.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Where would you go?
« on: February 02, 2011, 01:13:09 PM »
Couple questions:

You want to stay in Boston after graduation then I presume?

And financially, if you dont get a scholarship, will it all be going into student loans?

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: Legal Theories on the Health Care bill?
« on: February 01, 2011, 07:54:56 PM »
Arguably, but Social Security, Medicare and Income taxes force you to pay the government and are a tax.

The "mandate" is forcing people to pay a private entity for a service and if you opt-out, then you are fined.

The analogy quite doesnt hold up.

Hate to break this news to you, but Congress has been doing that for about 200 years now.  (see your paycheck)

Congress is attempting to tell citizens how they must spend some of their money. 

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: Legal Theories on the Health Care bill?
« on: February 01, 2011, 12:45:14 PM »
Then you'll love this:

Its obviously just a stunt, but it's what would happen if conservatives had to make a mandate.

I love the question being asked that if we can be compelled to buy health insurance what else can we be compelled to buy?  Guns?  Bibles?  Certain foods?  Where does it end?

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: Legal Theories on the Health Care bill?
« on: February 01, 2011, 11:20:25 AM »
Whether it's justified under taxation or commerce, where I get concerned is the setting of precedent.  Congress is attempting to tell citizens how they must spend some of their money.  Whether the net positive benefit to society outweighs the cost (and I do believe it does), is irrelevant IMO.  The crux of the issue to me is what precedent does it set if the Supreme Court allows the government to tell citizens how to spend their money?

Now, on the other hand if this was Universal Healthcare and they just taxed the citizens to pay for it, I see no legal issues with that. 

Fair enough, so we'll go with a different analogy then.  If this is a Tax levied only when a citizen chooses NOT to do something, lets extend that logic out.

What if the government were then to decide that they could tax anyone that doesn't exercise regularly?  Or that by choosing NOT to buy a car, I would be fined/taxed a fee to help subsidize those that do?  Where does the ability to control your life end if they can tax inaction?

My argument would be that taxes can only be levied on money/goods/actions, not on inaction.  How can taxing for NOT taking an action be anything other than a punishment?

But perhaps a 0L is overstepping his own enumerated powers in attempting legal analysis on such a divisive topic.   ;)

Right, it would be hard for anybody to argue that the Commerce Clause can require the people to buy something, but that's not exactly the issue in front of us.  The question presented here, rather, is whether the Federal government can create a tax for people who don't have health insurance.  This is where the Tax & Spend Clause will likely come into play. 

Whether or not you actually buy the health insurance is up to you, but just like Medicare, Social Security, and FICA, the Federal government has the undisputed authority to Tax the people, regardless of whether you personally benefit from the proceeds of a particular Tax initiative or not. 

In other words, the Health Care "mandate" is not truly a "mandate" in the sense that the Draft was a mandate.  It's not literally forcing you to do anything.  If you don't buy health insurance, nothing happens to you, nobody comes to arrest you, nobody finds you in contempt of court, etc.  Now, of course, you can argue that the tax "punishes" those who freely choose not to buy health insurance, but it is difficult to see how characterizing an enumerated constitutional power of the federal government (ie. the power to  Tax) as a "punishment" will win the day in court.  I'm not saying it's impossible to make that argument, but it is a long shot.

Bottom line, even if the so-called "mandate" were to be found unconstitutional, then the most that would happen is that the mandate provision within the Health Care Act would be wiped off the books.  The Health Care Act itself would still remain.  So I think a lot of this talk about repealing the law is more fiction than fact.

Agreed, but the argument that needs to stop being made by all the politicians/pundits out there (including some lawyers) is the analogy between Car Insurance and Health Insurance.

Although you could force some sort of absurd logic saying that the uninsured cost people in the end, so it's a charge up front instead of getting hit on the back end, you still cant argue that car insurance (intended to cover the OTHER person's costs in an accident) and health insurance (intended to cover YOUR costs) are the same kind of thing.  If this logic has been worked out, I'd love to hear it, but otherwise the analogy is done.  Furthermore, even if the analogy was valid or you dont care to consider the intent, auto insurance is a state requirement, not a federal requirement. 

On the primary topic though, consider the precedent if this is allowed to go on.  50 years from now, the government might mandate that everyone buy an american made car, require every family to own a laptop for every child or otherwise force you to purchase a good or service you dont personally desire to spend money on.  Then you sue the federal government for overreaching, but precedent says that they can force you to purchase anything they can justify as necessary for the greater welfare.

Simply put, the Constitution does not grant under the CC the right to force people to buy things.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: Succeeding in a bottom tiered law school - suggestions
« on: January 31, 2011, 09:48:52 AM »
I'll keep those points in mind, thanks!

It is true that you have to know black letter law for the exams.  However, knowing the black letter law will only get you half way there (about 1/2 of your classmates will have memorized the black letter law by exam time as well).  You still have to know when the law applies to the facts and how to apply it.  You learn how to spot issues and apply the law to the facts by reading cases.  Get a good outline (preferably from someone on law review), read some cases, but don't overprepare for class.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: Succeeding in a bottom tiered law school - suggestions
« on: January 30, 2011, 08:51:06 AM »
John, I'm in no position to argue, but all of my strongest resources and 'how to succeed' type books have repeatedly said that exams are on black letter law only.  I take your comment to mean that by understanding the big picture the black letter law is clear naturally.  If so, then we really dont have a disagreement as its just understanding black letter law to the point that you see the forest and know the trees because you know the forest.

My big point was that I dont want to fall in the trap of just case briefing and trying to glean law from the case, but rather read the E&E and hornbooks ahead of time (before the semester) so that I'm just refining knowledge throughout the class.

3-Know all black letter law before class so I can focus on nuances instead of rules.

Mistake.  Focus on the larger picture, as this is not an efficient way to use your time.  You will forget the black letter law before exam time.  Prepping for class is only important if the professor gives (or takes away) points for attendance, or grading is not anonymous.

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