CEB DailyNews has published my article, “Specific Jurisdiction May Be Based on Past Contacts with Forum, Says 9th Circuit Panel over Judge VanDyke Dissent.” The article is about Impossible Foods Inc. v. Impossible X LLC, No. 21-16977 (9th Cir. Sep. 12, 2023), where the district court had ruled that, in a lawsuit involving trademark enforcement, Impossible X’s contacts with California had to relate to trademark enforcement. But a divided 9th Circuit panel reversed, holding that the court may look to the defendants’ general business-development historical contacts with the forum—even if those activities did not relate to enforcing the trademark, the subject of the lawsuit.
This was too much for Judge VanDyke, who dissented, saying that the majority “reconceptualizes specific jurisdiction as a kind of backward-looking "general jurisdiction lite," [and] pushes our precedent in a new and troubling direction.” He also says the majority’s rule “is also potentially the most radical reimagining and expansion of specific jurisdiction in decades.”
The original article is here.
"Moot points have to be settled somehow, once they get thrust upon us. If an assertion cannot be proved, then it must be settled some other way, and nearly all of these ways are unfair to somebody."
—T.H. White, The Once and Future King
"At common law, barratry was 'the offense of frequently exciting and stirring up suits and quarrels' (4 Blackstone, Commentaries 134) and was punished as a misdemeanor."
— Rubin v. Green (1993) 4 Cal.4th 1187
“It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is today, can guess what it will be tomorrow. Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that be a rule, which is little known, and less fixed?”
— James Madison, Federalist 62
"Upon putting laws into writing, they became even harder to change than before, and a hundred legal fictions rose to reconcile them with reality."
— Will Durant
"It may be that the court is thought to be excessively legalistic. I should be sorry to think that it is anything else."
— Hon. Sir Owen Dixon, Chief Justice of Australia
"Counsel on the firing line in an actual trial must be prepared for surprises, including requests for amendments of pleading. They cannot ask that a judgment afterwards obtained be set aside merely because their equilibrium was slightly disturbed by an unexpected motion."
— Posz v. Burchell (1962) 209 Cal.App.2d 324, 334
"A judge is a law student who grades his own papers."
— H.L. Mencken
"Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws."
— Plato (427-347 B.C.)
Show neither partiality to the weak nor deference to the mighty, but judge your fellow men justly.
"So far as the beginnings of law had theories, the first theory of liability was in terms of a duty to buy off the vengeance of him to whom an injury had been done whether by oneself or by something in one's power. The idea is put strikingly in the Anglo-Saxon legal proverb, 'Buy spear from side or bear it,' that is, buy off the feud or fight it out."
— Roscoe Pound, An Introduction to the Philosophy of Law