Can you, in some simple way, measure how complex a country’s legal system has gotten? This 41-page study perhaps does exactly that, more or less: “Measuring the Complexity of the Law: The United States Code,” Daniel Martin Katz [pictured here] and Michael James Bommarito II, SSRN report #2307352, August 1, 2013. The study comes equipped with […]
Littlewood’s Law (of miracles-per-month)
Wikipedia describes Littlewood’s Law: Littlewood’s Law, or adage, states that an individual can expect to experience “miracles” at the rate of about one per month. The law was framed by Cambridge University Professor J. E. Littlewood, and published in a 1986 collection of his work, A Mathematician’s Miscellany. It seeks among other things to debunk one element of supposed supernatural phenomenology […]
Filled pauses at the Supreme Court
Following our Improbable article on ‘Laughter at the Supreme Court‘, we turn now to the implications of ‘Filled Pauses’ at the same institution. A Filled Pause (FP) can be uhm, ah, uh, &etc. The questions are: how often do they crop up, and which of the court’s Justices make the most use of them? And, perhaps […]
Laughs at the Supreme Court
The groundwork for research into the occurrence of laughter at the US Supreme Court was initially provided by Professor Jay D. Wexler (of Boston University School of Law) in his 2005 article for Green Bag (second series, Volume 9, number 1) entitled : “Laugh Track”. The professor had made the decision to quantify the laughter […]
Tautogram paper record?
Improbable suggests that attorney Dwight H. Merriam FAICP may have set a record back in July 2003. The record for the longest tautogrammatic title of any published scholarly paper. His title, which takes the from of an uninterrupted tautogram of no less than 10 words, was published in the journal Land Use Law & Zoning […]
The Egyptian six-hour necrophilia legislation
Necrophilia might soon become specifically legal in Egypt, within specific bounds, according to this report by Abeer Tayel in Al Arabiya News: Egypt’s women urge MPs not to pass early marriage, sex-after-death laws: report Egypt’s National Council for Women (NCW) has appealed to the Islamist-dominated parliament not to approve two controversial laws on the minimum […]
Reducing Vulnerability to Ecstasy
A US government document about the so-called “RAVE” act: Reducing Americans’ Vulnerability to Ecstasy Act of 2002 : hearing before the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, One Hundred Seventh Congress, second session on H.R. 5519, October 10, 2002.
Mathematics, the law, and birds
A Pennsylvania judge allegedly used simple mathematics to decide how long a newly convicted felon would stay in prison, according to a December 29, 2009 Citizensvoice report (thanks to Ted Nimes for bringing it to our attention): Former Luzerne County Judge Mark A. Ciavarella Jr. sentenced one former juvenile defendant to six months at a […]