Patterico's Pontifications



Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:56 pm

I’m not even sure I know what a “meme” is, but I think these qualify:

Another Dopey Political Test

Allah (and several others) link to this dopey political test, designed to tell how you liberal or conservative you supposedly are. Like most of them, it’s lame. I refused to answer several questions on the ground that neither answer was accurate, or I had no opinion.

Allah says:

I scored a 25, which puts me ever so slightly to the left of … Andrew Sullivan.

I shall tender my resignation immediately.

I scored a 25 as well. I’ll consult the management here to see if it’s acceptable for me to continue blogging.

Five Things You Don’t Know About Me

The Baseball Crank tags me with the meme of discussing Five Things You Don’t Know About Me.

Because I discuss myself incessantly, I may have mentioned some of these before. So sue me.

1) Ben Hogan once told my dad that he had been watching me play golf, and thought I was a good golfer. This is when I was about 12.

2) I have gotten a hole-in-one twice. (These two items might cause you to conclude that I am still a good golfer. That would be an incorrect assumption.)

3) I won my school spelling bee three years running. I went to the Fort Worth city spelling bee twice, and tied for third place one of those times. In one of the city spelling bees, I lost on the word riverain. I can’t remember which word knocked me out when I tied for third.

4) I have written and recorded several songs, as well as some classical music. My recordings are God-awful, as my recording equipment was bad and my singing voice is worse. But my songs aren’t bad. I may post them here some day.

5) I once turned down the chance to have Daryl Gates on my jury. It was a misdemeanor DUI/resisting arrest case in Alhambra. The defense had exercised all of its peremptories, and I could have forced Gates onto the jury, as I had four peremptories left and there were only three people in the audience, including him. I decided not to do so because I was worried he would be a divisive figure, and that some members of the jury might vote not guilty in large part to oppose him. As it happens, the jury hung anyway, so I should have put him on there, just for the fun of it.

What Lawyers Appreciate

That Lawyer Dude tags me with the task of discussing “things that lawyers appreciate.” He appears to be specifically interested in things that prosecutors appreciate.

There are many things I love about being a prosecutor.

One is the fact that I can always do what I believe is right. Unlike civil lawyers, who are ethically required to do everything they legally can to hide unfavorable information, I am legally required to disclose that information. I do not prosecute people I don’t believe are guilty.

I appreciate my colleagues, who help me think of good angles to pursue and persuasive arguments to make; our staff, which is tremendously helpful — and they’re county employees!; and the smart judges who take the time to understand the law.

But I’d like to focus on my appreciation for honest and courteous defense attorneys. It is a fact of life that the criminal bar is, as a general rule, far more congenial than the civil bar — a stereotype, to be sure, but one that generally holds true. There are many, many defense attorneys I deal with whom I trust to tell me the truth. Sure, with the important issues it’s “trust and verify.” If a defense attorney I trust says his guy doesn’t have a strike prior, I’ll check the documents. But with most attorneys I deal with, when I check the documents, they will have been truthful. And on the little stuff — such as when the defense attorney says he has written proof that his or her client has completed a court-ordered class — it’s not even necessary to check the documents, if you have a defense attorney whose word you completely trust. That’s nice.

As to the last two memes, I’m supposed to “tag” five bloggers each. But I’ll leave it to volunteers in the comments. If we get five volunteers for each of the last two memes, I’ll link the posts once they’re all up.

24 Responses to “Memes”

  1. If we get five volunteers for each of the last two memes, I’ll link the posts once they’re all up.

    Oh, the bait. I hereby volunteer for “five things you don’t know about me.” I take it you are accepting volunteers for the individual memes, not only for both at once? I ain’t no law-yer.

    Though the biased, mildly inflammatory textbook on “sport, physical activity, and the law” that I am currently editing is almost enough to make me want to become one.

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  2. I echo Pat’s thoughts on the benefits of being a prosecutor – doing the right thing, day in, day out, is good for one’s morale. I don’t know that I find the criminal bar quite as collegial as he does, but that may be a location issue. (Certainly, parts of the defense bar are excellent.)

    One other advantage of prosecution: No civil timesheets. No 0.2 hours on phone calls that you have to record. Just do the work.

    There are lots more, of course. It’s a really charming job.


    JRM (de6363)

  3. I’ll stand up for the civil bar, especially in my preferred practice area in federal court. Obviously, first and foremost, I appreciate my clients who make it possible for me to make a living and enjoy doing it, because I get to help people when they need it most. I also appreciate the fine court personnel who are unfailingly courteous, professional, and helpful. I appreciate the judges, most of whom work long hours and rarely complain. (I admit I especially like the ones who rule for my clients.)

    I appreciate the many attorneys who act ethically and competently and are always willing to share a lunch or a drink, even after the hardest cases. And I even appreciate the few attorneys who aren’t so nice, because they make me appreciate the others. Most of all, I appreciate the jurors who sacrifice their time to make the whole thing work. I am a great believer in the jury system but it takes good and willing people to make the system function. I’m fortunate to live in an area where most potential jurors feel the same way.

    DRJ (51a774)

  4. My score was 27. What I dislike about these ‘tests’ is the false choices. Jocelyn Elders or Pat Robertson? Please.

    [That’s one of many I refused to answer. — P]

    Dwilkers (4f4ebf)

  5. I’m starting to wonder if I’m the token conservative here. I scored a 36.

    DRJ (51a774)

  6. 24.

    But like Pat I skipped a bunch of questions. And you have to remember that they probably score “fed gov’t too big” as a liberal answer. Hah.

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  7. Has anybody tried Political Compass?

    Dubya (c16726)

  8. I got

    Your political compass
    Economic Left/Right: -0.75
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -0.51

    on that one dubya linked.

    Its fairly interesting – always interesting when something like that puts me left of center. 🙂

    Dwilkers (4f4ebf)

  9. I will also volunteer for the five things you don’t know about me, but not for the other one, as i’m likewise not a lawyer.

    I was a 15 on the silly test.

    aphrael (9e8ccd)

  10. I think it’s okay to talk about five things you appreciate in your profession, whatever that is.

    Patterico (906bfc)

  11. Cool, I’ll do both then. 🙂

    Anwyn (a130c1)

  12. I got 25. I agree that some of the questions gave false alternatives. Several questions assumed that social conservativism was the same as political conservatism. This one was a beauty:
    “The federal government should include funds to make abortion services part of any standard benefits package in health care reform.”

    Whoever wrote this probably thought they were parsing out who was for and who was against abortion. But a pro-abortion conservative (which is what I am) would say no because the federal goverment shouldn’t be including any funds to fund any benefits packages. In this case the error is harmless–no on either rationale results in the same result as conservative. But it does show the limits of what the creators of this test think.

    And who do I trust more–the FBI or the IRS?!! Suppose I don’t trust either one?

    kishnevi (171310)

  13. Whoever wrote this probably thought they were parsing out who was for and who was against abortion. But a pro-abortion conservative (which is what I am) would say no because the federal goverment shouldn’t be including any funds to fund any benefits packages.

    I agree the quiz is retarded, but in this case I think the question was legitimate, not as a tool to separate pro-choice from pro-life, but to distinguish sensible, mainstream pro-choicers from far left fanatics who think abortion is the most wonderful thing since sliced bread, and probably should be mandated under certain circumstances.

    Xrlq (8e9f3c)

  14. abortion … should be mandated under certain circumstances

    Uh, even conservatives might nibble at that one! I can think of several lunatics I wish were never born.

    Dubya (c16726)

  15. hmm the software extracted my “” “” tags around that last sentence…

    Dubya (c16726)

  16. uh, there should have been the word “joking” between start and end tags in both of my previous posts, but they aren’t showing in what I see…. oh well.

    Dubya (c16726)

  17. Can I do mine here?

    What I appreciate most about being a lawyer: It’s indoor work with no heavy lifting.
    I did not have to dissect cadavers in law school.
    It does not require me to carry a gun.
    You can do anything with it, from being a total “law-nerd” like Justice Roberts (I mean it in a nice way) or a “Renaissance man” who read too much Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett in his teens.

    Five things you may not know about me:
    1. I have herded sheep (and goats). I probably still remember how to make two kinds of cheese over a campfire. The only store-bought things I need are a largish kettle, a cheesecloth and salt. (I can carve a large wooden spoon for stirring, use the enzyme from the stomach gland of an unweaned lamb, and you know where milk comes from);
    2. I have a broken nose from fighting two guys at the same time when I was sixteen;
    3. I am a police academy dropout;
    4. I have owned three motorcycles, a HD Sportster, a Kawasaki 900Gpz and a Z-1, and I have “dropped” all three of them;
    5. I came out of adolescence at age 45 when my daughter was born.

    nk (77d95e)

  18. […] The door has been opened and the memes are flooding in! Or rather, Patterico dangled links as a reward for ponying up to two more memes, Five Things You Don’t Know About Me and Things I Appreciate about Being a Lawyer Whatever it is I Do. It’d be more interesting if I said three false things and two true things and the commenters guessed which was which, like one of those annoying ice-breaking rituals at corporate meetings and religious convocations, but I’ll just play it straight. […]

    Anwyn’s Notes in the Margin » New Year’s Memes (e8be5d)

  19. […] Blogging Memes By Patrick Carver Since I love to talk about myself, I’ll take up Xrlq’s and Patterico’s tagging of their readers to: […]

    Southron Views - Opinions and whatnot from a Southern right-wing programmer » Blogging Memes (42bf8f)

  20. NK,

    Your daughter is beautiful and after reading your comments here, she’s fortunate to have you as a Dad.

    DRJ (51a774)

  21. Thank you, DRJ.

    nk (47858f)

  22. I’ve done both the “5 things” meme, and was fortunate to be the first one listed under the “Lawyers Appreciate” list at IdeaLawg.

    Anyrate, I ended up slightly to the left of Bill Clinton, but I think that’s because they didn’t have a libertarian axis, and I didn’t like the answers given to most of the questions 🙂

    Jamie Spencer (e9a290)

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