Nov 12
8:23 PM

Just what are you going to do with those naked pictures of me?

No, it's not Carrie Prejean asking.  Not unless she happens to be getting on a plane at an airport participating in Homeland Security's Whole Body Imaging Program.  Those devices–slated to replace metal detectors at airports nationwide–capture detailed naked images of air travelers.  Hmmm.  Well, we all want to be safe, after all.  But just where do those images go after we're on the plane and merrily on our way?  Well, that's what the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) wants to know.  That group fired off a letter last April demanding "that the agency disclose records that describe the scanners' capacity to save and transmit images," according to its website, above.  They didn't get it.  The group has now filed a FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) lawsuit challenging the agency to make the details public.  Last June, H.R. 2200, a bill which would "prevent use of whole body imaging technology for primary screening purposes," was passed by the House of Representatives and is presently with the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation.  Interested in learning more about FOIA?  Check out the Freedom of Information Act Guide on the LRC's HeinOnline or check out the resources on the U.S. Dept. of Justice website.

Nov 11
10:09 AM

Event with John Prendergast, IPJ Scholar-in-Residence

Where: Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice Theater

When: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

Cost: Admission is free of charge


Activist and author John Prendergastreturns to USD as a Joan B. Kroc Peace Scholar in Residence Nov. 8-21.  Mr. Prendergast is the Co-Chair of the ENOUGH Project, an initiative to end genocide and crimes against humanity. He has helped create several documentaries, including George Clooney's Sand and Sorrow, Don Cheadle's Darfur Now, and Tracy McGrady's 3 Points.


About “3 Points”: When Tracy McGrady of the Houston Rockets heard about the massive challenges children from Darfur were facing in the refugee camps in Chad, he decided to see for himself. After spending days listening to the harrowing stories of young Darfuris in the refugee camps and their incredible thirst for a better education, he decided to act. When McGrady and his traveling companions from the Enough Project returned, they hatched the idea for the Darfur Dream Team's Sister Schools program linking American middle schools, high schools, colleges, and universities with schools in the Darfuri refugee camps. McGrady’s journey to the refugee camps in eastern Chad is chronicled in the movie "3 Points."


RSVP to or contact Elisa Lurkis | | (619) 260-7913


Nov 9
4:42 PM

Connect to the LRC on the Go!

It's been a few weeks now since USD has "gone mobile" with their new iphone/ipod app.  It has some pretty cool features like a GPS-enabled campus map and live Torrero scores.  It also gives you access to both library catalogs.  So now you can find out if we have an older version of the textbook you forgot, resources you can use on your paper, or if we  have that interesting book your professor mentioned, all through your phone.  It also has a campus directory so you can directly contact the reference librarians with your research questions.  For more information on the app click here.

You can also check out the San Diego NBC 7/39 News Segment.

Keep an eye out for the blackberry app coming soon.

Nov 5
8:58 PM

Estate Tax Breaks Riding into the Sunset?

The big estate tax breaks of 2001 are due to sunset in 2010.  That's just for rich people, right?  Think again.  Heirs of small business owners or even small farmers might be shocked at the market value of "the back 40"–especially if Congress does nothing, the law sunsets, and the taxation of the estate goes back to pre-2001 levels.  Read about the latest developments in one of the LRC's premier databases, RIA Checkpoint.  (Just select the News/Current Awareness category and do a keyword search for: "estate tax" reform, then click RIA Tax Watch.)  That article says, "A move is underway in Congress to stave off the sunset of the estate tax in 2010," but with all the focus on health care reform, who knows if Congress will find room on its plate for this.  HR 3905, the Estate Tax Relief Act of 2009 "would repeal both the 2010 one-year termination of the estate tax and the new basis rules, increase
the estate and gift tax unified credit beginning in 2010, and coordinate a
reduction in the maximum rate of tax (from 45% to 35% over a period of years)
with a phaseout of the deduction for State death taxes."  You can read the full text of the bill here, an authenticated version from the GPO.  Find more commentary in the RIA current awareness services, or the rather jaded view of a financial advisor here.

Nov 4
11:52 AM

The History of International Law in the Supreme Court

This Friday and Saturday (Nov. 6 & 7), the Santa Clara University School of Law will host a conference on The History of International Law in the Supreme Court.  The first day of the conference will focus on the history of international law in the Supreme Court from 1789 to 2000. The second day will focus on key Supreme Court cases decided in the past decade, evaluating those cases against the backdrop of the historical analysis developed on day one. Revised versions of the conference papers will be collected in a book published by Cambridge University Press.