Coming up for Air

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Location: Ann Arbor, MI // Madrid, Spain

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Finals are cool...

And so the take home portion begins:

In other news, it's raining and cold today.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

My friend who is making the most of having his two front teeth punched out in a recent altercation.... Posted by Hello

Mofly, Me, Mi Bebe, Isa Posted by Hello

Jeff, Ron, Me at Colleen's Posted by Hello

Colleen's party Posted by Hello

Monica and Oz following the auction Posted by Hello

Oz, Jamie, me Posted by Hello

I cant stop laughing at this picture.....  Posted by Hello

They followed us from the grassy commons area at [insert your undergraduate institution]... Posted by Hello

Jamie and Theresa against Dave.... sorry I didn't get you in the picture dude... Posted by Hello

Kickball in the Quad Posted by Hello

So many pictures of the Tug of War.... but people wanted them, so here they are. Posted by Hello

Tug of War Posted by Hello

Herr Mark, Raghu, Theresa Posted by Hello

Tug of War.... Dave Alles' weaponry is in violation of all principles of international law. Posted by Hello

Raghu: get off of my cloud. Posted by Hello

More field day.... sandwiches.... sodas...backpacks...grass...pre-collective action freak-out. Posted by Hello

To the heros of our section, MNOP. Posted by Hello

Little-known fact: Russians, like Duby here, are taught how to strut since weening. Posted by Hello

Hippies at Field Day Posted by Hello

Tim, Alex, Me, Meghan, Jeff, and snack. Posted by Hello

Alex, Meghan, Tim, Jeff, Jamie and assorted snacks. Posted by Hello

Jamie and Tim.... the fun begins Posted by Hello

Friday, April 22, 2005


What? This doesn't happen at your law school?

Another Attempt the tug of war video?

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Smarter than Us

I love MIT kids.

Their latest prank:

The trio submitted two of the randomly assembled papers to the World Multi-Conference on Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics (WMSCI), scheduled to be held July 10-13 in Orlando, Florida.

To their surprise, one of the papers -- "Rooter: A Methodology for the Typical Unification of Access Points and Redundancy" -- was accepted for presentation...

..."Rooter" features such mind-bending gems as: "the model for our heuristic consists of four independent components: simulated annealing, active networks, flexible modalities, and the study of reinforcement learning" and "We implemented our scatter/gather I/O server in Simula-67, augmented with opportunistically pipelined extensions."

Friday, April 15, 2005


The honorable tradition of encouraging cooler animals continues with the Wolphin! I wish I knew more about this than just what CNN explained, but unfortunately I don't have time right now. When I do have time, I assure you I shall find out more about the false-killer-whale-x-dolphin-animal-of-awesomeness.

None is safe.

America's Funniest Home Videos. Or Not.

Remember the skepticism surrounding the arrests during the Republican National Convention? Although it seems like a long time ago, the NY Times reports developments on those arrests:

For Mr. Kyne and 400 others arrested that week, video recordings provided
evidence that they had not committed a crime or that the charges against them
could not be proved, according to defense lawyers and prosecutors.

Among them was Alexander Dunlop, who said he was arrested while going to pick up sushi.

Last week, he discovered that there were two versions of the same
police tape: the one that was to be used as evidence in his trial had been
edited at two spots, removing images that showed Mr. Dunlop behaving peacefully. When a volunteer film archivist found a more complete version of the tape and gave it to Mr. Dunlop's lawyer, prosecutors immediately dropped the charges and said that a technician had cut the material by mistake.

Seven months after the convention at Madison Square Garden, criminal charges have fallen against all but a handful of people arrested that week. Of the 1,670 cases that have run their full course, 91 percent ended with the charges dismissed or with a verdict of not guilty after trial. Many were dropped without any finding of wrongdoing, but also without any serious inquiry into the circumstances of the
arrests, with the Manhattan district attorney's office agreeing that the cases
should be "adjourned in contemplation of dismissal."

Some might argue that, hey, the justice system works pretty well since these individuals are eventually found not guilty or are cleared of charges. First, just because 91% are eventually cleared of charges does not mean that they did not act illegally. There exist evidentiary problems when arresting numerous individuals in a short time-span. The problem that I see is that when we argue that the justice system is "working" because 91% of 400 people arrested in a span of days within a small geographic location are eventually cleared of charges, we normalize the appropriateness of the procedures leading to those arrests. I haven't taken criminal procedure yet, but I recognize that there are situations in which arresting large numbers of individuals is appropriate and wise. That these procedures can be appropriate and legal does not imply that they are costless. Apart from my normalization hypothesis, they create direct costs on the legal system, on the individuals found not guilty or cleared of charges, and opportunity costs in the preceding two categories as well as in patrolling other areas.

And, seriously, imagine being the guy cleared by a freelance videographer's unedited version of a tape the DA had planned to use against you at trial.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Stop Whining KLM Airlines

A KLM flight originating in Amsterdam and destined to Mexico was refused entry into U.S. airspace when the U.S. was made aware of two individuals on the flight's manifest that were on the U.S. "no-fly list." KLM's puffing is due in part to the fact that the plane was not scheduled to land in U.S. territory.

I think it's normal that KLM is frustrated, but both the airline and the Netherlands seem to have taken it a little personally. reports that:

A Dutch official told CNN the Netherlands will take the matter to the European Union in Brussels to seek clarification about whether checks of "no-fly" lists are required for flights transiting the United States. KLM officials said they are under no obligation to check passengers on transiting planes against terror watch lists. "In our interpretation, this was not a flight to or from the United States. It was to Mexico," KLM spokesman Bart Koster said. The flight "never had the intention to make a landing in the United States."

I certainly understand the frustration of the crew of KLM and the passengers. Nertheless, in my interpretation, KLM was entering U.S. airspace. The U.S. doesn't send Carnival Cruise ships to territorial waters of the Netherlands without asking permission. There are certainly issues of comity in allowing planes and boats into your territory, but this isn't a situation of comity. Maybe the U.S. should ask for the manifests instead of getting them through Mexico, but I think it's appropriate that the U.S. ultimately has the last word on who gets to enter U.S. airspace. That KLM is now checking its manifests against the U.S. fly list is evidence to both the theory that KLM is the cheapest cost avoider here and also that the U.S. policy worked.

A significant number of Europeans complain about the "Blue Pass" mentality (named after the color of the passport) of some U.S. citizens regarding obligations to respect norms and laws in other countries. I can't imagine an international norm more established and respected than that pertaining to territorial sovereignty. Does anyone remember what color KLM's planes are?


Blue Pass, indeed.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Me saying goodbye to Nikkity before going to Madrid over Christmas break. Posted by Hello

Mom fishing. Posted by Hello

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