For the Record

March 27, 2019

For the Record

The Mueller Report

For many years, many pronouncements in my home began with “For the record, I just want to say … .” They came from the mouth of our youngest resident. As a lawyer, “for the record” often had me checking the room, looking for the taping system or a court reporter I hadn’t noticed.

Of course, there was never a record. There were, though, opportunities to misinterpret or, more certainly, to forget. Still, with every “for the record,” my daughter reminded me that we live in a very uncertain world, full of people wanting the certainty that can’t exist.

Cate Rubin’s words brought into focus the latest news from l’affaire Trump. Lots of noise

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Alan Krueger, RIP

March 20, 2019

Alan Krueger, RIP

RIP

Professor Alan Krueger

Alan Krueger died on Saturday. I’m grieving, even though I never met him, and he’d know me … not at all.

Professor Krueger taught at Princeton University for 30 years, minus stints at the U.S. Department of Labor and as the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors for two years during the Obama Administration. But his legacy really involves curiosity and a willingness to dump economic orthodoxy.

I’m not an economist, but many of my best friends are … if an undergraduate degree in economics makes someone an economist. Degrees aside, I’ve spent a chunk of my adult life studying—if deep reading qualifies—the work product of those who no longer accept the notion

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Presidents’ Day: America, the Ruled!

February 18, 2019

Presidents’ Day: America, the Ruled!

presidents day

President Donald Trump

Happy Presidents’ Day. Not so much in Tucson / Pima County. Here, we let the kiddies out of school to celebrate the rodeo later this week. A Tucson thing! And, although with closed courts Rubin & Bernstein shuttered its office, LB and I worked and encountered plenty of professional offices, open for business and fully staffed. (Staff: no rodeo days for you, and we need to examine holiday policies.)

I heard a fine discussion about presidential power on the NewsHour this evening. Is expanding presidential power inherently bad for democracy was up for discussion. The answer, from historians Douglas Brinkley and Andrew Rudalevige? Probably.

We have elected 43 men to lead

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SOTU … or the Jerry Lewis Telethon?

February 5, 2019

SOTU … or the Jerry Lewis Telethon?

sotu

President Donald Trump

The man gave a good speech. He did, truly! Boring and predictable, and surely lacking in truth here and there. Still, competent. Wait. What? Pen•in-s(h)u•la? Eh! No BFD. Wait. What? “The Madero Maduro regime.”

Did some words piss me off royal? Absolutely. With respect, if someone I love gets shot, do I care about the identy of the shooter? Undocumented person, as opposed to someone whose gun comes courtesy of Second Amendment rights?

Talking about long wars, started by his party’s last president, without any acknowledgment that he knows Jacksh*t about the issues. Hello?

Does Wall nonsense infuriate me? Obviously, physical barriers in urban centers make sense. Just as clearly,

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Obituaries … and the New York Times

February 1, 2019

Obituaries … and the New York Times

obituaries

Mark Rubin

Like many of us, I imagine, I have an early morning Internet drill. First up? Tucson obits. The functions suck (and don’t get me started on marginal newspapers and their lack of investment in tech infrastructure), but I need to know what’s up with my people.

Next? The New York Times. First, I glance at the headlines. Then, I read anything from Paul Krugman. (A few of my Wingnut friends have Econ degrees. I love listening to them spout off about why he did not deserve the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences.)

Before I leave the Times, I always read the obituaries. Not, here, checking for people

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Trump’s Ugly Reeks / Wreaks

January 22, 2019

Trump’s Ugly Reeks / Wreaks

ugly

President Donald Trump

On January 8, 2011, a few miles from where I lived, a D Congresswoman almost died. An R U.S. District Judge did, and five others, too. A dozen more suffered gunshot wounds, which they live with still.

In the aftermath of the horror, good people formed the National Institute for Civil Discourse. (Here’s a March 18, 2011 Washington Post story about its founding, written by 50+ year friend, former Tucsonan and Rock Star Reporter Sari Horwitz.) I knew this organization back in the day, for my former spouse volunteered there for more than a year, and through the Institute we met and remained friends with co-founder Brint Milward.

WTF?

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A Concerned Man’s Rant

January 8, 2019

A Concerned Man’s Rant

rant

Mark Rubin

I thought about an old client today. He had a sweet deal. Too sweet, according to a wise man I knew from another life. “The other side can’t operate, with your client’s contract. Give the man a break.”

My client grew up believing in the sanctity of anything and everything which advantaged … him. “No way,” he told me. “In America, a contract matters!” Not so much, it turns out, with an executory contract and the Bankruptcy Court. (Executory contract? A contract which requires performance in the future.) A Chapter 11 proceeding terminated the contract, leaving my client in the cold, literally.

The old case came to mind on account of lots of talk

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It’s Personal: Passages … and More

January 5, 2019

It’s Personal: Passages … and More

passages

Mark Rubin

I’m writing on Saturday night, enjoying Lawrence of Arabia on Hollywood at Home on our local PBS station. It’s truly a magnificent movie! And a reminder that for more than 100 years the Middle East has been front and center in the Western World’s decision-making dynamic.

On to my subject matter: passages.

Tangential loss presents special challenges. When a family member or close friend passes, rituals drive the experience. Work stops. People show up. “Whatever you need,” comes quickly. Generally, people who suffer a loss get a wide professional berth.

Not so much with a tangential loss. You knew George H.W. Bush? Don’t expect a trial continuance. Your neighbor passed, so

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Dear Mr. President

December 23, 2018
dear mr. president

President Donald Trump

Dear Mr. President:

I’m one of your constituents. I write because I’m concerned about you. Very concerned!

You tell us regularly that we’re not paying attention to your accomplishments. Wall under construction. Tax cuts. Stock market at record levels. No more nukes in North Korea. NATO nations—not allies, just nations—paying more bigly, because of you. Black Americans better off then ever before. And, always, you’re da Best!

We hear a different story, but that’s all Fake News, right? That’s what you say, almost every day, on Twitter. Must be true, for you’re our POTUS. You’d never tell a tale, Mr. President, would you. Not you.

Still, here you are, stuck in a public housing dump in the

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USPS – Go Post Office!

December 18, 2018

USPS – Go Post Office!

I saw a post on FB the other day, dissing the United Stated Postal Service. I don’t recall the words, but I remember how I felt: Pissed Off! I’m a big USPS fan, and reflexive jabs at it “anger up my blood.” (Satchel Paige – maybe the best baseball pitcher ever – said “avoid fried foods, which angry up the blood.” Me? Fried foods good; dissing USPS bad.)

I shop often on eBay, and I’m the a-m-a-t-e-u-r in my life. (LB loves eBay and the USPS, and she does eBay way better than I ever will.) Almost everything arrives via the Post Office. On time. Unbroken. And with a smile and more from

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