Saturday, March 24, 2007


Does the law need to be rewritten? Yes, "the law". That's what I meant. THE law. U.S. law, International law, common law....Law. The human concept(s) of law. Does it need to be rewritten? OK, re-considered?

Give me a break on the practical side. I am asking this initial question without regard to HOW. I just want to consider that perhaps the concepts of law are way outdated.

Law seems to have three major purposes. It deals with identity or "self" and property, alone or the interchange between them. Law has contracts and other instruments for legal entities (legal selves) to distribute property: contracts for sale, wills, etc. Law provides punishment for anyone who threatens or harms other person's or properties. I could go on.

However, our concepts of personhood or self and our uses for property have dramatically changed with the Internet and global warming.

"I" can be several different entities. I can be a corporation. I can be a celebrity with a stage name. I can be an unincorporated organization. I can be an anonymous (and unidentifiable) Internet presence. While we have maneuvered around these problems, it may be time to treat identity as usufructory or alternatively, as a collection.

And, speaking of usufructory, property, though by title perhaps "belonging" to a specific owner, actually belongs to a complex body of interdependent land and natural resources. Rather than taking property "to the exclusion of the rest of the world," perhaps we should give executory control of land only to those who would serve and lead the community in its use.

So where to start? How does one reform a system?

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Thunder on the Mountain

After two weeks of all of us having the flu and one week of getting back to normal, Kuruna came home with the "throw-ups" and Satya came home with a shiner after a big sledding accident. We spent the remainder of last week nursing bruises, cuts, fevers, and nausea.

This morning, I returned to law school work in earnest for the first time since the beginning of February. I took the long back road over the hill to school. (No need to get there too soon!) I chose Bob Dylan's Modern Times as my rambling music. As Dylan's "Spirit on the Water" colored my mood, I watched the snowy world pass by outside my window and noted how well our local plowers take care of the back roads. I also noted who has posted their property against hunters and x-country skiers and who has not. I cruised around curvy bends and across high country farms. Dylan is great on the road.

This album, in particular, evokes environments and people in motion. It transports me to seedy bars, open campfires, and church basements. Sometimes it just evokes an intimate Dylan concert. I was somewhere in one of these reveries when an enormous black object blocking the otherwise pure snowfield shocked me into braking.

About 20 mph further down the speedometer, head turned sharply to the left, I deciphered the vacuous presence. A large, black woolly cow stood, somewhat aloof, eying me from her fence post.

photo credit jdj150
I swear she winked at me before turning her head down into the snow. I have not yet determined what passed between me and the cow or me and the world, but it had something to do with Dylan and that enormous black cow and the week I have had.