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December 17 2007 Legal Blog Roundup

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It's that time of year again — to be charitable. Unfortunately for UnitedHealth CEO William McGuire, the giving isn't voluntary. According to a December 7th entry in the Wall Street Journal's law blog, McGuire has agreed to "return" $620 million in stock options and retirement pay at the behest of those pesky federal regulations on stock-option backdating. No doubt you're thinking, "$620 million is a nice chunk of change" — and it is, except that McGuire has been permitted to keep $800 million of valued stock options in addition to the $530 million he earned for running UnitedHealth from 1991 to 2006. I wonder what he wants for Christmas...

In the humble opinion of this lowly legal blogger, there are a few Supreme Court justices I'd like to see sent back to the Dark Ages where they came from, Antonin Scalia among them. But lo, it turns out we actually agree on something! What can it be? O.J.'s guilt. The name of America's resident golfing murderer was brought up in front of Scalia in the case of Allen Snyder, who, like Simpson, is African American and in 1995 killed his estranged wife and her male companion with a knife. Unlike Simpson, however, Snyder was found guilty — a result, some say, of the prosecutor's decision to dismiss every potential black juror from the pool of available candidates. Scalia, for whatever reason, concurred that Simpson "feigned a mental illness by his...great-escape escapade, and that is...what the prosecutor said he was trying to bring before the jury." Read the blurb on Scalia's momentary sanity in the December 6th entry of the Wall Street Journal Law Blog.

If you're someone who likes to keep up with the latest exchanges among the legal intelligentsia, check out the Legal Scholarship Blog, which describes upcoming events where legal scholars and practitioners will gather to discuss the ever-complex juggernaut that is the law. A sampling: the site reports that the University of Chicago Law School will host a conference in conjunction with its Law and Philosophy Workshop called "Torture, Law, and War: What Are the Moral and Legal Boundaries on the Use of Coercion in Interrogation?" Something to ponder.

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