2008 Lowering the Bar Awards

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Now that 2008 is over, we can finally close the books on it and maybe try to evaluate some of the nonsense spawned during it.

The following are my selections for those people and/or events that may have Lowered the Bar the furthest during 2008.  Certainly there are other candidates (and other entire categories) out there, so these are just my personal nominations from among those that I wrote about during the year.  The items below are listed in no particular order.

Please note that each of the links below will open in a new browser window, so you should close each one out after reading unless you want to be up to your ass in windows.

Again, thanks for reading.  Your generous mouse-click donations during 2008 added up to almost half a million page views for this site, each one of them carefully noted and deeply treasured by me or a member of my staff to whom I may have delegated treasuring authority.  Seriously (and this is the only time I will be serious in 2009), thanks for your support, and to those who contributed news items, thanks for your contributions.

Now back to the nonsense.

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Lawsuit of the Year

Legal Argument of the Year

Lawyer of the Year

Homeland Security Department of the Year

  • The Department of Homeland Security, which during 2008 (1) implemented (along with the Pentagon) a hand-held lie detector likely to be even less reliable than the polygraph; (2) announced plans for a walk-through airport "scanner" that would similarly try to detect persons having "malintent"; (3) came up with and actually used the horrible word "malintent," and (4) continued to pretend that the TSA, which based on the government's own testing can detect bomb parts approximately no percent of the time, is making us safer.  The Department did finally get around to taking Nelson Mandela off the terrorist watch list this year, but that was not enough to get DHS off my list.

Legislature of the Year