Archive for the ‘ Law ’ Category

Marginal Tax Brackets for 2001

I recently solved a problem that has been bothering me for almost a year now. For reasons no one wants me to get into, I had been attempting to model US federal marginal income tax brackets for individuals under 26 USC §1. The math is pretty straightforward. The brackets are adjusted each year according to the average CPI-U for the period September TY-2 through August TY-1. There are some quirky rounding rules, but I had managed to get all the numbers in the model to match the actual tax brackets since 1993 without difficulty. Except one–the 35.5% bracket, which the [ . . . ]

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Tonight: Qwertz on Gay Marriage & the Spousal Privileges at Philosophy in Action

Tonight, philosopher Dr. Diana Hsieh will interview me about “Gay Marriage and Spousal Privilege” on her live internet radio show, Philosophy in Action. This is the subject on which I wrote an unpublished Law Review comment many moons ago. It wasn’t a particularly relevant topic back then, but a recent Supreme Court decision striking down §3 of the Defense of Marriage Act makes it vastly more likely that the federal courts will have to grapple with the issue eventually. I’ve put the whole comment on SSRN for those who are interested. This episode of internet radio airs at 6 pm [ . . . ]

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Dictionary of Occupational Titles, Revised Fourth Edition

After weeks of hunting, I am pleased to present to you the complete electronic version of the Dictionary of Occupational Titles, Revised Fourth Edition, as supplied by the U.S. Department of Labor as ASCII files on 34 floppy disks. This electronic version contains data published in the following print volumes: Dictionary of Occupational Titles, Revised Fourth Edition, Vol. I Dictionary of Occupational Titles, Revised Fourth Edition, Vol II Selected Characteristics of Occupations Defined in the Revised Dictionary of Occupational Titles Data published in these volumes are in the public domain and may be reproduced and distributed without source credit. This [ . . . ]

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On Amendment One and Obama’s ABC Interview

On Tuesday, North Carolina voters approved Amendment One, which strips unmarried couples of all legal recognition of their relationships under State law. Billed as a simple gay marriage ban, the amendment actually goes much further, as Patrick at Popehat describes, and voids all other legal protections unmarried couples, gay or straight, might seek for themselves, including wills, adoptions, medical powers of attorney, and possibly even joint tenancy in realty. [Part 2 and Part 3 in the Popehat series on Amendment One] It also prohibits North Carolina from recognizing these non-marriage relationships when they’re formed and governed by the laws of [ . . . ]

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The Producer, the Librarian, and the Promise-Breaker

TLDR: This changes nothing. Today the Librarian of Congress announced new rules promulgated pursuant to the Librarian’s rulemaking authority under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act to exempt certain actions from the prohibition against circumvention of copyright protection systems found in 17 U.S.C. §1201. The “anti-circumvention provision” states: No person shall circumvent a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under this title. The Librarian is required by §1201 to make a determination every three years as to whether any exemptions from this prohibition are necessary in order to preserve access to copyrighted works. In the words of [ . . . ]

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Gill v. OPM Update

Sixteen months ago, I reported on Gill v. Office of Personnel Management, a suit against various governmental agencies by same-sex married and widowed persons challenging the constitutionality of §3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act. The United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts (specifically, Judge Joseph L. Tauro) granted summary judgment on many of the plaintiffs’ claims today. Opinion here. [PDF] Back then, I opined that the case was philosophically flawed because it sought equal protection at the expense of expanding the federal welfare state. It was and continues to be my opinion that the federal welfare [ . . . ]

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McDonald v. Chicago

The Supreme Court decided McDonald v. Chicago, the sequel to D.C. v. Heller, this morning. A majority held that the Second Amendment applies to state and local governments and threw out Chicago’s ban on handguns. A plurality of four Justices (Alito, Scalia, Roberts, Kennedy) held that the Second Amendment is incorporated by the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment, and avoided addressing the question of whether the Slaughterhouse Cases, which long ago castrated the other half of the 14th Amendment, the Privileges or Immunities Clause, should be reconsidered. One Justice, Justice Thomas, wrote a separate opinion concurring in the [ . . . ]

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