Earlier this month here in Nova Scotia we undertook an exercise in democracy, the very foundation of our legal system. From a numbers perspective two very interesting numbers came out of that exercise. Firstly, the results of the election proved to be the first time in 130 years that a first term government in Nova Scotia was not returned to power. This is not a political blog so I'm not going to go into any depth on that point other than to say that something happening for the first time in 130 years sounds like a significant event but actually . . . [more]
Archive for ‘Miscellaneous’
A recent report shows that US government spying has gone even farther beyond what Edward Snowden disclosed. The National Security Agency has apparently broken the security of two major in-the-cloud email systems, Gmail and Yahoo! mail. The story reports that the spy agency intercepted metadata and content of over 180,000,000 emails in the space of a month.
Does knowledge of this activity mean that a lawyer who uses one of these services for business email waives privilege in the content? Is it like speaking to your client in a criminal matter with a police officer clearly within earshot?
Or does . . . [more]
One to watch — but not spy on, perhaps: the Dark Mail Alliance is aiming to develop the software to enable email that has end-to-end encryption in order to frustrate government efforts to read your post. At the moment the alliance with the name that only Darth Vader could love comprises Silent Circle and Lavabit, though the invitation to join them is extended to any others who share their mission to develop and:
. . . to open source the protocol and architecture and help others implement this new technology to address privacy concerns against surveillance and back door threats
. . . [more]
On October 17, 2013, Quebec’s Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse released an opinion on the government's policy paper, Orientations gouvernementales en matière d'encadrement des demandes d'accommodement religieux, d'affirmation des valeurs de la société québécoise ainsi que du caractère laïque des institutions de l'État (Charter of Quebec Values) previously discussed on Slaw. . . . [more]
As with so many things, the legendary — and ofttimes apocryphal — Yogi Berra said it best: "It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future." Still, there are developments that seem to be certainly portentous, even if we can't say what shape the portents will assume tomorrow and the day after that. All of which wriggling is appropriate to a discussion of quantum computing, if only because the very nature of quanta is elusively probabilistic.
But what might any of this have to do with law? Here's the simple thought: we can see that as information technology becomes more . . . [more]
Section 649 of the Criminal Code makes it an offence for a juror to disclose “any information relating to the proceedings of the jury when it was absent from the courtroom that was not subsequently disclosed in open court.” This sweeping prohibition has prevented the public from knowing about the reasons for, and the process by which, juries go about making decisions. The concern addressed here relates to communications with the media by jury members following conclusion of a trial, a common feature of high profile cases in the United States. It is time to loosen these restrictions and let . . . [more]
Paul Daly has posted an interesting argument on his blog, Administrative Law Matters, relating to the legality — or perhaps correctness — of Prime Minister Harper's appointment of Federal Cour of Appeal Justice Nadon to the Supreme Court. As everyone will likely know, the governing provisions are ss.5 and 6 of the Supreme Court Act, which read as follows:
5. Any person may be appointed a judge who is or has been a judge of a superior court of a province or a barrister or advocate of at least ten years standing at the bar of a province.
. . . [more]
UNESCAP, the United Nations Economic Commission on the Asia-Pacific region, has been working on a regional trade agreement focusing on electronic commerce. The agreement, once made, could affect the interests of businesses in Canada and the US (and other countries in that region…).
There is a meeting in Bangkok in November to make some decisions about the document. It would be helpful for anyone who wants to influence the document to get on the record before then, in order to have a place in the conversation in the later stages.
So: I invite anyone interested to comment. Should the Canadian . . . [more]
Jennifer Senior: Had you already arrived at originalism as a philosophy?
Justice Antonin Scalia: I don’t know when I came to that view. I’ve always had it, as far as I know. Words have meaning. And their meaning doesn’t change. I mean, the notion that the Constitution should simply, by decree of the Court, mean something that it didn’t mean when the people voted for it—frankly, you should ask the other side the question! How did they ever get there? . . . [more]
Figures often beguile me, particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case the remark attributed to Disraeli would often apply with justice and force: "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."
A recent article in the Vancouver Sun, about an Angus Reid survey regarding "Canadians' openness to the religions of others" based on "the results of a major survey of more than 2,000 residents by Vancouver-based pollsters Angus Reid" highlights the importance of context and clarity in stating conclusions based on statistics.
The article . . . [more]
Here are a couple of new features in relation to searching.
It's not exactly same thing as using the site:xxxx.zzz search
. . . [more]