Friday, July 29, 2005

Feb Calfornia Bar Pass Rates - Online Schools outperform Cooley and several other ABA schools.

La Verne continues to impress me. Their Feb 2005 performance on the California Bar was 67% - respectable performance for a non-ABA school and is at or above many ABA accredited schools. Likewise, Concord (a non-ABA online law school) consistently produces good bar pass rates year after year - this time it was 55%. Mind you in California, the Gold Standard of bar exams, performing at or above 50% is a good showing.

Cooley's bar pass rate in California was 14% - affirming my decision to leave the school as being a wise move. I should note that this does not mean I believe Cooley is a bad school per say, rather the cost of legal education at Cooley, or perhaps any ABA accredited school for that matter, is way out of line with the tuition charged. I've come to believe, based in part on my experiences at Cooley, that traditional legal education (traditional in the sense that the ABA has had a near monopoly on legal education for the past 50 years, whereas before the ABA monopoly nearly HALF of all practicing lawyers had obtained their credentials by correspondance and/or non-ABA education) is fast becoming obsolete and the elitist nature of the ABA is doing more harm than good. In fact, a considerable number of ABA school bar pass rates are below those of non-ABA/Online law schools (ABA schools - U of Denver 25% , New England School of Law 17%, Whittier 33%, Thomas Jefferson 32%, to name just a few...).

I would be pretty ticked off about an education investment that cost $150,000+ only to discover that I was still unable to practice law in ANY state, whereas my counterparts who spent a total of $10,000+ were engaged in the profession.

From Slashdot: Patent Examiners Flee USPTO

"Soaring numbers of patent applications for software and business processes is not only leading to the ludicrous patents for the likes of Amazon and Microsoft. The stress of dealing with vast numbers of applications is leading to an exodus of patent examiners from the USPTO, reports A US Government Accountability Office report (PDF) says that the USPTO has made progress in hiring examiners, 'but challenges to retention remain'. The IP Kat blog quotes Jason Schulz of the EFF, who comments that 'The incredible surge of patent applications, especially in the software and internet business method arena, is just crushing them, and the management problems are rising to the surface with greater visibility for those reasons. Where anything under the sun is patentable, it puts an unbelievable amount of pressure on the patent office'."

Physicist throws time-travel theories a curve

By Michelle Lefort, USA TODAY
What do you get when you join a 1981 DeLorean, a "flux capacitor" and a digital dial set to Nov. 5, 1955? If you're the character of Dr. Emmett Brown in the 1985 movie Back to the Future, you've created a time machine.

The possibility of time travel has occupied the fantasies of philosophers, authors, children and directors. But to some physicists, it's more than pure fancy.

In the July issue of Physical Review Letters, Amos Ori, professor of physics at the Technion, the Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, argues that the laws of physics don't stand in the way of building a time machine.

Ori hasn't created, or even designed, a physical time machine. He instead constructed a situation — a mathematical model — in which the laws of physics will make one for him.

Monday, July 25, 2005


In a couple of weeks I am going under the knife. Odds are I'll blog about it and heck – I might even post a few pictures of the gory details. I debated waiting until Christmas break, but decided now is the best time to get this problem solved once and for all.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Intellectual Property Is Costing Me My Life

A great story about a man who is very sick and being... killed thanks to wonderful US "Intellectual Property Laws" - just the phrase makes me sick.

Non-ABA University of La Verne College of Law must be doing something right.

La Verne’s February 2004 California Bar Pass rate was 67% and July 2004 pass rate was 82%. For several years running this non-ABA school has been churning out bar pass rates that exceed those of some of the expensive California ABA schools, yet for some reason the school can’t seem to secure anointing by the ABA. Perhaps the school needs more library books, comfy chairs or mahogany trim to meet the ABA’s high standards?

Cooley bar pass rate in California over the same period was 33% (July 2003), 0% (Feb 2003) and 33% (July 2004). Online Law School Concord had 25%, 43% and 50% respectively. In February 2004, Oakbrook showed a 73% pass rate.

* February 2005 results should be showing up soon...

California Bar Exam Results

No US-Style Patents (yet) in EU

It's hard to call this a victory, more like a respite from the next battle being planned by Sith Bill Gates of Microsoft - a company well known for its reliable software and high ethical business standards.

Thomas M. Cooley Loses Lawsuit Against The ABA

The opinion and judgment can be found HERE and HERE as PDF documents.

You can also link HERE and download accordingly.

This is probably old news to Cooley students as the judgement is dated June 9th, but for non-Cooley students it's an interesting read. Life is subject to become much more interesting at the remote campus locations now that ABA accreditation remains a bit of an issue...

Phoenix International School of Law - Revisited

Last week I participated in an online chat session hosted by the admissions department at PISL. By rough estimate 15 to 20 prospective students signed on and asked pointed questions about this new up and coming law school. For the most part the admissions staff came across as candid and helpful, with only occasional boilerplate answers used when queries were related to PISL working toward its ABA accreditation. Overall - I came away mildly impressed.

One prospective student stood out in that he was already practicing law (a graduate of a non-ABA law school i.e. Concord, Taft, North Central, or something similar) and wanted to explore the option of entering the school as an advanced student. Before the DOJ anti-trust action against the ABA in the mid 1990’s such a tactic would have been impossible, but today a handful of non-ABA practicing graduates/lawyers are going back to school as advanced students to obtain ABA credentials.

I also learned that PISL is NOT taking transfer students until they obtain their ABA credentials. It's not clear to me if this is a requirement of the ABA or just PISL's desire to have new, untainted blood from the get-go. One CAN enter as a new student, but I would need a CAT Scan before deciding to throw away a year of credit hours earned at an ABA law school.

I will be very surprised if PISL fails to become anointed into the ABA guild within the next few years, since the school seems to be doing a lot of things right. By the time the ABA visits sometime in 2006 the school will (probably) have a high number of applicants and a low number of acceptances – a formula the ABA seems to like. Toss into the mix experienced and highly credentialed faculty, pricey tuition and school policies that keep attrition rates low, PISL just might pull it off. I believe it's long overdue for a booming state like Arizona to have at least one (if not more) law schools in the Phoenix area.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Interview With Deep Cache

"We're pretty confident that the FOX network uses Microsoft products. We're very confident that these Microsoft product include numerous security vulnerabilities, which our script exploits to take control of the ticker on the bottom of the screen. Then, each week, we insert random subliminal messages about freedom, democracy, and penguins. Neo-Cons watch FNC religiously and will happily consume these subversive messages without realizing that they are slowly undergoing a de-re-education program."

Among other subversive themes, the messages include excerpts from the U.S. Constitution, including "Congress shall make no law..." (1st Amendment) and "The right of the people... shall not be violated" (4th Amendment).

Deep Cache concluded, "Most Neo-Cons have never read the full text of the Constitution, instead relying on 15-second summaries and soundbites. By dominating the FOX crawl, we will quietly deliver the Bill of Rights into the homes of millions, one bite-sized phrase at a time. This will do more for the future of intelligent debate in this country than turning Rush Limbaugh, Tucker Carlson, Ann Coulter, and Robert Novak over to the Vogons."