Monday, May 15, 2017

To my fellow non-topnotchers & bar flunkers


I am signing off from blogging until something of "transcendental importance, overreaching significance, or of paramount public interest" crops up. There is a dragon to be slain come November and blogging has become one among the many distractions that may keep me from being a dragon slayer.

My blogging journey started with  Under The Talisay Tree  in 2003.  Here's a sample from that old blog which should be taken with a grain of salt because it's about a fish cum hero - Lapulapu. In 2008 somehow I lost access to my account. So I created another blog under the same name but of different format. That blog has had sporadic postings when I started this one.

Imagine reading a book and suddenly something seems amiss in a particular passage. You go back over the sentence and find a modifier is dangling here or a typo is hovering there. In my case, that will disrupt my concentration on the topic at hand and time gets wasted going back on track. My frustration over these disruptions is the why and wherefore of this blog which was started in 2012. Not all the posts are about typos, though. In one post I had a lighthearted discussion about goat's milk as prestation (see here).

Speaking of typos, as a consequence of my loss of access to my original blog, I am disappointed, nay horrified, that I could not edit a typo on the very first words of one post (see here) which - the post, not the typo -was linked to by Manolo Quezon in his blog (see here).

And if you see from the page views that my posts look visited more than once, that is just me trying to see if a post needs further editing.

OK, I think I can deal with this blogging distraction The other distractions seem insurmountable: TV series and movies on "alam nyo na anong " sites. At the moment it is Designated Survivor, Blacklist, and Scorpion. I usually stop watching a series after a few seasons. TV series usually lose their intensity for lack of new plots like Suits or their stories can get weirder like Game of Thrones or the old  X-Files.

As it is now, instead of reading reviewers, I am reading closed captions or sub-titles when it is already 10PM so that the missus and children will not be disturbed by the sound.

So how can I follow this classic advice for reviewers:
I recommend that your wake-up time should be at 4:30 a.m. and “lights out” should be at 9 p.m. This is to make your body clock adjust to this schedule so that by November, you would be used to sleeping and waking up early.
Sour grapes

On May 3 next year the SC will release the 2017 Bar Exams results. I may not be prepared for the 2017 Bar Exams but I am ready for the results. Here's why:

Who cares about being no. 1. Until the 2016 Bar no one from a Cebu school made it to the top spot. The highest was the 3rd spot which was clinched in 1951 by Pablo P. Garcia, from the University of San Carlos (USC). He is the grandpa of my beauteous Professor in Legal Forensics, Mayor Christina Frasco of Liloan, Cebu.

Noy Pabling was joined at the 3rd spot only in 1975 by Emmanuel R. Pacquiao, of the University of the Visayas, and later in 1981 by Arthur T. Lim, also of USC.

Through the years the 4th to the 10th places were claimed by some 20 other Cebu graduates but it was only in 2015 that the 3rd place was surpassed when Athena Plaza, of USC, got the 2nd place. Which as we know was followed right away this year with a tour de force by USC when the top spot was taken by Karen Mae L. Calam, with three other spots on the top ten to boot. Take a bow, Dean Joan Largo!

Full disclosure: Prof. Joan and Prof. Bretch were my professors in Constitutional Law 1, and Obligations and Contract respectively. How do I rate them and their fellow professors? Let the results speak. Ipse loquator labor. And yes, they should be thankful I did not graduate from USC; else they would not have achieved their dream of 100% passing rate. :-)

So you see, no more record to aspire for. The seat is already taken. I might as well enjoy reading closed captions and subtitles while munching on sour grapes.

What's the fuss about the top 10.  Here's a news item right after the release of the 2016 bar exams:
MANILA - University of the Philippines (UP) President Danilo Concepcion has downplayed the absence of a UP College of Law topnotcher in the 2016 Bar examinations.

Concepcion, a Bar topnotcher in 1983, who is also UP College of Law dean, explained that law schools were not established to produce Bar topnotchers.

“The business of a law school is to teach law in the grand manner and to make great lawyers; it doesn’t say to make Bar topnotchers,” Concepcion was quoted by the Philippine Law Register as saying last Wednesday before successful UP Bar examinees.
 I, too,  fully concur with the sentiment; who cares about being a topnotcher. Let's drink to that with a bottle of sour grape juice.

There is just too many of us. One Manila university, or at least one of its students, posted on social media (I could not find the link anymore) saying that they may not have a topnotcher but they have the "living bodies" of 272 passers. Can anybody beat that?

Then I read the opinion column of Raul J. Palabrica where he mentioned Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel Laureate in Economics, bewailing the downside of too many lawyers. Here's the complete paragraph from the book The Price of Inequality:
The macroeconomic effect of America‘s litigious society was suggested by some studies that showed that countries with fewer lawyers (relative to their population) grew faster. Other research suggests that the main channel through which a high proportion of lawyers in a society hurts the economy is the diversion of talent away from more innovative activities (like engineering and science), a finding consistent with our earlier discussion of finance
Wouldn't adding my name to the lawlist  be like rubbing salt to the wound? Please pass the sour grapes.

No more need for a lapida. When I first entered law school I had this classmate who was a middle-aged cop. Asked why he was taking up law, his answer was the classic one for people going back to school in their older years: "Panglapida na lang ni." Just for inscription on one's gravestone.

When I went back to law school, it was my turn to answer the question. And this used to be the lettering I planned to be etched in gold leaf on my gravestone which should be made of the highest quality of marble from Romblon:

Or if you're not one for subtlety, and you missed the rhyme:

By the time I turned 50, however, I decided I would be cremated instead of being buried. Why bother with memorial plans or memorial plots? So there goes the need for the Atty. before my name, the roll number, MCLE compliance, etc.

But what about engraving the epitaph on the urn of my ashes? Or on the top of  paper weights that will contain my ashes? No, never mind, but sour grapes pa more, please.

Sweet lemons?

We'll have to wait for May 3, 2018 whether we'll have sour grapes or sweet lemons. Bring it on.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Voir dire, yes. Boldereaux, what?

From a commercial law reviewer, 2016 edition, page 379:

I thought this could be a good candidate for what is known as  "shock and awe" terms in the bar exams in the mold of "depecage" in the 2015 Civil Law exam. Or the "voir dire" in  Remedial Law.

The reviewer does not say much about the word. No problem; there is always google.

However, it seems there is no such word. But there is bordereaux. And it is the plural of bordereau. See for example this entry in the FreeDictionary:

  (bôr′də-rō′)n. pl. bor·de·reaux (-rō′)detailed memorandum, especially one that lists documents or accounts.

[French, probably from bordedge, marginfrom Old French bortof Germanic origin.]

A report providing premium or loss data with respect to identified specific risks. This report is periodically furnished to a reinsurer by the ceding insurers or reinsurers.
Well, I guess it's one less "shock and awe" word to worry about.

As for depecage and voir dire, they sure did not shock those who read the San Beda Memory Aids. 

Here's depecage on page 574 of the 2014 Memory Aid in Civil Law:

And here's voir dire on page 442 of the 2014 Memory Aid in Remedial Law:

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Saturday typos, 29 April 2017

From a commercial law reviewer, 2016 edition, page 374:

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Not now on docket fees

On page 168 of a remedial law reviewer, vol. 1, 2016 edition:

Section 7, Rule 141 of the Revised Rules of Court actually requires docket fees even for compulsory counterclaims. It seems this was not so before A.M. No. 04-2-04-SC.

I searched high and low for a copy of the A.M. but could only find references to it.

In Korea Technologies Co., vs. Hon. Lerma, G.R. No. 143581, Jan. 7, 2008, the SC made a definitive ruling:
On July 17, 1998, at the time PGSMC filed its Answer incorporating its counterclaims against KOGIES, it was not liable to pay filing fees for said counterclaims being compulsory in nature. We stress, however, that effective August 16, 2004 under Sec. 7, Rule 141, as amended by A.M. No. 04-2-04-SC, docket fees are now required to be paid in compulsory counterclaim or cross-claims. 
The "not" could just be a typo and could readily be changed to "now" and everything would be all right. But the quoted jurisprudence would pose a problem.

Update 30 May 2017: After listening to Prof. Tranquil Salvador discussing the jurisdictional importance of docket fees it seems the reviewer is correct after all. OCA Circular No. 96-2009 dated August 13, 2009 says that in a revised issuance of Korea Technologies  the second sentence in the above-quoted paragraph (which I emphasized in blue letters in this update) has been deleted.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Saturday typos, 22 April 2017

From a remedial law reviewer, Vol. 1, 2016 edition:

Page 74,

Page 108,

Page 116,

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Saturday typos, 1 April 2017

From  a Political Law Reviewer, 2015 Edition:

Page 45,

Page 51,

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Idle and nugatory construction

I am re-reading Agpalo's Statutory Construction. So I immediately felt that something was amiss in this passage on page 14 of a political law reviewer, 2015 edition:

I know I've met this phrase somewhere in Agpalo's text. And indeed there it was on page 626 of the 2009 Edition of the book:

Since the author quoted from Cooley's treatise, what better way than to check with it. This is the cover page of his ancient work:

Note the long title which reminds me of the complete title of Darwin's seminal book on evolution.

On page 92 Cooley wrote:

It seems the author missed a few words. Cooley's treatise is available here for download.

And yes, Darwin's book is also available for download here.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Saturday typos, 25 March 2017

From page 9 of a political law reviewer, 2015 edition:

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Saturday typos, 18 March 2017

From a tax reviewer, 2015 edition:

Page 429,

Page 455,

Page 507,

Page 521,

Page 522,