Random Thoughts on Libaries, Internet, Constitution, & WHORE

Admittedly, there’s no official diagnosis to narcolepsy, but I’m suspecting that’s what I have because I find myself dozing off every 5 minutes or so. One moment I would be reading about “suspect classifications” and my next conscious thought was about something else completely unrelated to Con Law. I looked at my notes and somehow, I had jumped all the way to “non-fundamental rights.” Tomorrow is going to be a very long day.

I’m not sure how to keep myself awake. I’ve tried just letting myself fall asleep naturally. I ended up sleeping 12 hours and feeling like I barely slept a wink. I’ve tried taking sleeping aid but that knocked me off for at least 6 hours, which means if I don’t go to sleep early, I wouldn’t be able to wake up in time for the exams.

I’ve often wondered how often I’d fallen asleep in all of my classes. Looking at my notes, it seems that I’ve missed quite a chunk of lecture (esp. con law). So did my non-narcoleptic friends. It seems like our whole class had a black-out everytime we attend con law lecture. Now I need to figure out how to keep myself focused on this long exam.

It’s not that the subject matters aren’t interesting. They are. In terms of substance, I find this semester more invigorating than last semester. The problem lay in the fact that the schedule is too demanding. We simply couldn’t handle extra classes three days in a row at 8am in the morning. There’s only so much my brain could absorb in one day. More than one professor protested the schedule assigned to my section, but the person in charge of Records & Registration was unmoved.

Almost to the end. Almost. I just need to survive through 5 more days.

W.H.O.R.E. Witness Having Other Reasonable Explanation

Usage: Criminal Law

My favorite quote from my crim law professor:

“If I’m going to be labeled a W.H.O.R.E. by working for free or charging a fee, I rather be a high class W.H.O.R.E.”

The Library or Internet Decision

When the internet was first invented, I barely noticed it. When AOL began its mass CD-mailing campaign, I barely winked. When my brother taught me the purpose of internet (e.g. chatting, e-mailing), I finally began to believe that there is some sort of purpose to this technology called “internet.”

A decade after my first brush with the world wide web, I stopped frequenting the local library. The reason? I can look-up all the information on the internet. With the exception of textbooks, the internet has offered interesting articles in place of out-dated paperbacks. Why bother watch one hour of painful local news when I can simply skim and select the type of news that interests me at my own pace during the time of my choice?

The internet revolution has changed the legal world as well. In our research and writing class, instead of learning the library codes, we learn about using online database to look up case law and treatises. In fact, some of us grumbled when the instructor told us that we had to learn the “traditional” method of legal research — going through rows of old books to locate an annotated case from the early 19th century, and so on.

And now, I can’t imagine what I would do without the internet. It’s not only my source of entertainment, but an essential part of my academic and professional life.

The United States Constitution and Governmental Duties to Individuals

It is common perception that the U.S. Constitution is one of the most powerful documents in the world. The U.S. Constitution guarantees certain rights and protects citizens against government abuses.

It comes as a shock that in fact, the Constitution actually says very little about the government’s duties to individuals.

In general, the Constitution prohibits the State from depriving individuals of life, liberty, or property without “due process of law,” but as Chief Justice Rehnquist pointed out, the language of the Constitution does not impose an affirmative obligation on the state to protect individuals from each other.

What power does the federal government have? The broadest powers, as interpreted by the Supreme Court, is the taxing and spending power. When the federal government wants something done, it needs to entice individual states to exercise its powers through financial incentives.

There exists a tension between the desire of wanting the government to stay out of your life, but step in to help you when the time is appropriate. The problem is that no one seems to have a handle on the government.

Another tension is the relationship between the federal government and the state government. The Constitution implicitly grants the state immense power, stating un-enumerated powers (not reserved for federal government) are reserved for the states. Unfortunately, discprencies in state standards for health care and policing make one wonder why is there no national standard?

The Constitution is a flexible framework, but it is a silent document. Is it time to amend the Constitution to make sure it serves the general population and not expose the vulnerable people to political whims?

[thanks to stan.faryna, kaibara87 and shelley’s case via cc]

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