"Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he."
-- Proverbs 29:18, King James Bible (KJV)

Friday, June 05, 2015

U.S. Supreme Court Celebrity Justices and Extrajudicial Speech: Some Lead, Others Follow

Richard Hasen has a marvelous article on "Celebrity Justices" of the U.S. Supreme Court, present and past, at Hasen, Richard L., Essay: Celebrity Justice: Supreme Court Edition (May 30, 2015). UC Irvine School of Law Research Paper No. 2015-61. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2611729

We note especially as a Paul, Weiss law firm alum that 4 of the top 10 "Celebrity Justices"  on Hasen's list were either associates or partners at the international New York City headquartered law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. Justice Goldberg was a letterhead partner in his day and Justices Ginsburg, Kagan and Sotomayor were summer associates at Paul, Weiss at the start of their legal careers.

Such Justices are by nature people who are at the center of what is happening and that description also fits the Paul, Weiss law firm. It is no surprise to find their alumni leading the vanguard of expanded Supreme Court media presence via extrajudicial speech in our modern digital age.

Consider here as a personal aside that in my day there was one particular Paul, Weiss associate who billed more time than anyone else doing what was then absolutely new and pioneer "computer legal research". You can guess who that was.

Some people lead. Others follow.
That is the nature of the world.