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The supreme court is considering a case which may determine what your constitutional rights are with regard to "Unreasonable Search and Seizures."  The Illinois Supreme Court reversed the conviction of a person who was convicted on a Marijuana charge when police allowed a "Drug Dog" to sniff his car during a traffic stop and found Marijuana.  The issue is whether allowing "Drug Dogs" to "sniff" for illegal items without a search warrant violates our constitutional protection against unreasonable search and seizure.  Standby for the ruling.

Federal Government Recalls Bonds to Reduce Costs - The U.S. Treasury will default on contracts with investors, mostly individuals, who loaned the government money in 1979 on the agreement that they would receive 9.125 percent interest every year until their bonds mature in the year 2009.  The Bureau of Public Debt announcement claims that this recall applies to about $4.6 billion in 30 year bonds issued on May 15, 1979 and calls for their redemption by May 15, 2004.[1] Of course, investors holding these bonds are not forced to cash them in and can hold them until 2009 if they want, but they will no longer receive the interest promised.  That means that if you loaned the government $10,000 in 1979 you will lose $912.50 a year, $4,562.50 in the next 5 years, in interest you would have been due from the government before the government decided to back out of their end of the contract.  The Treasury claims that these bonds are being called "to reduce the cost of debt financing" and will result in the government saving $544 million, an amount equal to what the national debt increases every five and one-half hours or so nowadays.  The government has previously, under the Clinton administration, tried to reduce the national debt by redeeming long term debt before maturity, but investors have usually refused to turn in their holdings without a settlement on the interest due. This time, it's being done by demand. Those holding the bonds have no choice. The government has announced that it is going to stop paying interest on May 15, 2004, no ifs, ands, or buts about it.

A FLORIDA JUDGE HAS CHANGED THE SENTENCE  of a, now 16 year old boy, who was 13 years old when he accidentally caused the death of a 6 year old girl by demonstrating wrestling moves he had seen on TV.  He had been tried as an adult an sentenced to "Life in Prison."  His sentence was changed to 3 years (time served) and house arrest with his mother the responsible party.  About time!!!  In our opinion the original sentence was outrageous considering his age. 

an islamic court in nigeria has upheld the sentence against a single mother who is to "Stoned to Death" for having sex out of wedlock!!  Are we not lucky to live in the United States?

The U.S. supreme court has found that companies do not have to breach the seniority system to allow disabled workers to move into other jobs when the job they are presently in becomes impossible to accomplish due to their disability.  However, if the seniority system has exceptions and the seniority system has been loosely interpreted a disabled worker may have a valid claim to bump employees senior to himself or herself.  

The colorado supreme court overturned a lower court and held that a bookstore owner does not have to turn over records detailing a clients purchases.  The ruling disallowed a police search of the book store records seeking evidence to be used in an upcoming case.  The decision reaffirms our right, under the first amendment,  to keep what we read private.     

who will decide what is to risky for the disabled, the person or the company?  The Supreme Court will decide by July.  The case involves an individual who was denied a job due to a possible exposure to Echazobal which could exasperate his Hepatitis C.  Standby!

can you be charged with murder if your dog kills somebody?  Standby for the verdict in the trial of Marjorie Knoller, 46, and Robert Noel, 53 who are accused of murder because their two dogs mauled and killed Diane Whipple, 33.  The trial has been moved from San Francisco to Los Angeles due to adverse publicity about the pair having sex with their dogs and adopting a white supremacist prison inmate as their son.  Jury selection began in late January 2002. An incredible verdict!  Marjorie Knoller guilty of murder in the second degree, Robert Noel guilty of involuntary manslaughter.  SECOND DEGREE MURDER VERDICT OVERTURNED ON 17 JUNE 2002 BY THE JUDGE PRESIDING OVER THE TRIAL.  Watch your dogs!!!  

supreme court will consider whether carpal tunnel syndrome qualifies as a  disability under the Americans with Disability Act.  Decision:  It does not qualify as a disability.

The state of oregon files lawsuit against federal government for a directive that blocks the states assisted suicide law.  A federal judge has set aside the directive until the case can be heard.  A classic case of a conservative Attorney General interfering in states rights.  This law has been approved by the voters on three occasions.  Decision:  Attorney General Ashcroft cannot dictate to the states.  The assisted suicide law in Oregon is legal.  

supreme court considers ban on fake child porn versus actual child porn.  Do computer generated images of children fall under laws banning child pornography and can congress enact laws making it illegal to use computer generated images of children engaged in sexual activity?  The sad thing is, why do we even have to consider this issue.  In any case the plaintiffs in the case, the porn industry, are using examples such as the movie "Traffic" which showed a supposedly underage daughter engaged in sexual activity with an older man.  Additionally, the industry says that they use young looking adults to simulate children in pornographic movies so why not computer generated likenesses.  decision: supreme court says fake child porn is legal.

federal judge upholds class action status of an anti-trust case brought by Wal-Mart and other retailers against MasterCard and Visa.  The case involves MasterCard and Visa requiring retailers to accept a debit card, if they also accept charge cards ("an honor all cards policy") and charging an excessive transaction fees in the debit card clearing process..  Of course these fees are passed on to the consumer with higher prices.  You end up paying the fee plus the interest on whatever you charge.  

a federal appeals court in Boston reinstated a Massachusetts law that requires tobacco companies to disclose the ingredients in their products.  Tobacco companies had filed a suit trying to overturn the law so they would not have to disclose the ingredients.  Something to hide tobacco companies?

supreme court dismissed a lower courts decision that said the City of Tucson, Arizona could refuse free equipment for a National Day of Prayer celebration at a municipal park.  The justices told the lower court to reexamine the ruling in light of a recent ruling allowing a public school to let a bible club hold meetings inside schools after classes.  The assistant Tucson city attorney said she feels the lower courts ruling will eventually be upheld since it involved using taxpayer money to support religious events.  Wait and see!

wife and children of a victim of the world trade center attack faces deportation because she was listed as a dependant on her husbands work visa.  The "Immigration and Naturalization Service says she lost the right to live in the United States when he died even though both their children were born in the United States and are citizens.  Residents of Chatham, New Jersey are outraged and fighting to have her declared a United States citizen.  RESOLUTION:  SHE WILL BE ALLOWED TO STAY.  DECISION MADE ON 10 OCTOBER.

abortion foes lose racketeering appeal:  Sorry, a federal appeals court in Chicago upheld a juries decision that violent demonstrations outside clinics violate racketeering laws.  No more trespassing and blockading clinics.  Also, cough up $257,780.00 in fines.

judge in california:  Expected shortly is a decision from a court in California whether or not traffic light cameras violate the "unreasonable search and seizure provisions in the U.S. Constitution.  The other issue involves allowing private business to make money from ticket fines.  resolution:  judge finds cameras illegal because of conflict of interest involving a private corporation administering the program and making money from fines. 

STATE OF OREGON:  The State Supreme Court ruled that approving deceitful tactics can expose defense lawyers and prosecutors to sanctions.  This means that, for the time being, no more undercover work in Oregon.  However, rule changes are on the way.  legislation pending.

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Last modified: March 22, 2011, 0645 CST