Saturday, February 28, 2015

#RIPLeonardNimoy an interesting guy

I am not a huge Star Trek fan, although I've seen many of the episodes.  Likewise, I have watched a number of the movies.  I'm much more of a Star Wars guy.  Leonard Nimony's death (forever "Dr. Spock" to many) was sad.  Even though he died at 83 after a long, successful life, the world lost an interesting person.  A classically trained actor, Nimoy appeared in many TV shows and plays.  He directed several movies.  He was a great photographer, and he wrote poetry--good poetry.

Many of us like to believe we are searching for "truth," and I've found that elusive truth comes in many forms.  It seems Nimoy found his "truth" in expressing himself and leaving things of value.  The world benefitted from his work and his artistic expression.  We all benefit from hearing what people have to say, and  losing an intelligent and perceptive person means our world is more drab as a result.

I search for "truth" in my own way.  For me it comes from the love of my fiancĂ©, Jillian, who helps me be who I really am and allows me to express myself.  This makes me happy and is my "truth," and I think it helps me produce things of value whether it be through my career, how I treat people or creative endeavors.

I will continue to pursue my "truth," but I am still sad to see Leonard Nimoy go.  The death of a true artist should make us all pause, reflect and consider our place in the universe (or in one of Dr. Spock's multiple universes as his USS Enterprise sails into the afterlife).

RIP Leonard Nimoy.  You enriched the world around you.  The world lost when you died.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

#thelorax #drseuss

FCC approves #NetNeutrality

Finally.  Internet is now regulated like a utility.  This will make it harder on cable companies to jerk people around.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

#BartSimpson

Why should you drive your #SocialSecurity disability client to the hearing?

Because you will learn a lot about the case you didn't know, stuff that isn't in medical records or may not have been revealed in client interviews no matter how assiduous the preparation.  You will learn anecdotes that can be very helpful in your case.  Sometimes these "grains of truth" or "indicia of reliability" can be quite telling.  For example, when a client says he or she had to stop working because they couldn't pull their oxygen tank next to a blast furnace and therefore couldn't stop their cluster headaches, it screams disability.  This is especially true when the client had previously stabbed himself or herself in the leg with a syringe to stop the headaches so he or she could work but developed an immunity to the medicine in the syringes.  This information came out in a car ride on the way to the hearing.  Powerful stuff.

Most importantly, though, you make sure they make it to the hearing.  They can't win if they aren't there.

#HomerSimpson


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Baby #Stewy from #FamilyGuy

Because kids know when adults are full
of it.  Lawyers need to have this skill too.

#VanillaIce arrested on burglary charges

First Dustin Diamond gets nabbed.  Then Chuge Knight, who shook down Vanilla Ice.  Now Vanilla Ice.  What next?

Here's what I'm giving up for #lent #ashwednesday

I wonder if these people will do the same.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Monday, February 16, 2015

#BetterCallSaul

"Slipping Jimmy" is another name.  He's my favorite TV lawyer.  Thanks to my lovely fiancĂ©, Jillian Brevorka.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Monday, February 9, 2015

"Thoughts"

Reading poetry tells me about me.
I can dwell in someone else's mind while staying in my own mind at the same time.
That glorious unknown mind meld where words written leave traces of the author long after he or she is gone.
Our thoughts, when written, recorded or remembered by others live on.
They persist even when our physical selves die or take different form.

Is claimant testimony important in a Social Security disability case?

Of course it is.  Today I found out I won a case for a claimant whose case was borderline.  He had some past heart issues, a stroke, joint pain and depression; these weren't his only ailments, but they were the main ones.  But nothing in the records screamed disability.  In his opinion, the judge talked about the claimant's testimony regarding memory issues, mental functioning issues and other cognitive issues following his stroke.  He also discussed claimant's physical issues.  This testimony was invaluable because it was stronger than the records.  Couple with my brief which closely mirrored his testimony, this tipped the scale in his favor.  If his testimony had been weak, he wouldn't have won.

My article in North Carolina Lawyer

Friday, February 6, 2015

#BlackHistoryMonth

Glad to see the NBA standing up for causes and recognizing important dates.

#BrianWilliams is likely on the way out

I think NBC is negotiating his severance package.  This is the reason for the delay.  They may also be waiting to see if this will blow over.  It won't.  It appears Williams at the very least misremembered an event from 12 years ago where he said he was in a helicopter that was shot down in Iraq.  Kind of hard to forget those details.  If we have a country that dwells on something as stupid as #deflategate, then they should be concerned with what appears to be a clear distortion of the truth.  When credibility is lost, then news anchors are done.  Look at Dan Rather: he was right about George Bush, and CBS still axed him.  What Williams allegedly did is far worse.

#MagnaCarta 800 years ago

Nice display at ABA Midyear in Houston.

Tyreese from #WalkingDead

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

I'm suspicious of the #HarperLee #ToKillaMockingBird "sequel"

Why is it coming now?  It is 55 years later even though Lee wrote the book before To Kill a Mockingbird.  I wonder what it will do for the legacy of Atticus Finch.  More importantly, at 88, does Lee have any control over this or is she being taken advantage of?  After all, apparently the manuscript won't be edited.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

What are Social Security disability "credits," and how many do you need to be eligible?

Generally speaking Social Security disability is like a giant federal insurance program.  If you pay in the necessary amount of money (referred to as "credits") then you are 'insured' under the system.  Note: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) does not have credit requirements.  Sometimes, however, people have worked, but they haven't worked enough to be qualified under the system.

You receive one credit per quarter.  In other words, you receive four quarters per year if you work a full year.

The Social Security Administration publishes a brochure entitled "How You Earn Credits," and the basics are:

  • "If you become disabled before age 24, you generally need 1 1/2 years of work (six credits) in the three years before you became disabled;
  • If you are 24 through 30, you generally credits for half of the time between age 21 and the time you became disabled; and
  • If you are disabled at age 31 or older, you generally need at least 20 credits in the 10 years immediately before you became disabled."  See www.ssa.gov for a more comprehensive chart.

Focusing on the past

I love history just as much as the next guy.  I did major in history at UVA.  But I don't want to devote a license plate to it.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

If your name is trending on Twitter, and others make money from it, should you be compensated?

I think you should.  I'm still trying to get over UVA losing to Duke last night in a clash of titans.  I did notice, however, Tyus Jones's name is trending on Twitter.  Tweeting on this is driving traffic to people's sites who make money from it.  So why shouldn't Tyus be compensated?  His name is being used for commercial gain.  Not paying him is a tort.

#SuperBowl is heavily trademarked

There are restrictions on when it can be said, where is written and when the logo can be used; there are many other restrictions too.  It is worth billions, and the game is the most watched event on Earth each year.  This year I've noticed it has been used more regularly so I wonder if there haas been a slackening of the rules surrounding the trademark.  I went to Super Bowl XXXVIII, the "wardrobe malfunction" Super Bowl where the Patriots beat the Panthers with a last second field goal.  It was quite a spectacle.