A Chronicle of information collected on the journey from Student to Lawyer.
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20th Century Russia
Ivey Guide to Law School Admissions
So, I did indeed buy the book mentioned in the title. I received it yesterday and opened it up this morning and read about 60 pages. Let me tell you, these first 60 pages are truly packed to the gill with useful information. Let me first explain that I have neither had any prior knowledge of the process of applying to law school, nor have I read too terribly much on it to this point. Therefore, all the material I’ve read thus far is truly new and fresh to me. If, you have read much on your own about applying to law school then some of the information may indeed be redundant or you may find its uniqueness lacking.
I do want to make mention of a few things that were mentioned in these few pages. The beginning is essentially a statement suggesting what it is like to be an admissions officer. With that knowledge you are supposed to walk in their shoes and realize what things they see on a regular basis, thus avoiding those common themes, and do what will, as the author states, and “wow” them.
She later goes on to explain just what this “wow” factor really is. Basically she says that you need to present yourself in a manner that makes you stand out more than the others with similar numbers. Needless to say this really can only be done with essay portion, not your grades. To me this means that you can simply write your way into law school. I’m not sure if that is accurate or not, but I imagine that that is good news for those of us who have average grades and who believe they are capable of writing a decent essay.
Once I finish the book I will do a better review of each section explaining what I think will be useful and what I simply can’t figure out. I’m dumb.
The LSAT Plan
In this previous post I disclosed my idea of what I should plan to do for preparing for the LSAT. Needless to say I don’t think it’s going to work out that way.
Here are some things you may need to know:
The LSAT is only offered 4 times a year. What does this mean? Well, if you plan to apply to Law School early. Let’s say October of the previous year. You will need to have your scores in before that date. It may take a few months to receive these scores. So, you will have to plan around these dates.
Seeing how I want to have my application in around October the October test is out of the question unless you take it a whole year before. But, seeing how you probably want to give yourself as much study time as possible the previous June will maximize study time and give you enough time to get results before submitting the application. However, I have heard that due to the sheer number of people taking the test that the curve may play to your favor if you take a winter exam in February or December. Whether or not this is true it is up to you to decide.
Prep Courses for the LSAT are only offered a few times a year as well. Granted many of them are online which will enable you to maintain a more flexible schedule. I haven’t met anyone that would advise you to not take a prep course, therefore, we should all agree that it’s a good idea. However, I know some people that have taken the physical prep class and the online class. What I gather from those that took the online one is that they suggest the the physical one if at all possible because of hands-on learning and the practice tests are administered in a test-like atmosphere. These should help prepare you for the real thing. I’m planning on taking the LSAT prep course at FSU in January, 6 months before I take the test. If I can find a prep course to be administered more closely to the test date I will change my prep class to that one.
I’m sure all of this is subject to change. We’ll see. This book below is full of tons of information to help you along the way to getting into law school. It’s cheap and got great reviews.
I’m probably going to order so I can read it and give all of you readers the new information I’ve acquired. It’s like stealing or something. Awesome.
Preparing to Start Studying for the LSAT
So, I’ve been thinking a lot lately as to how much time I should study for the LSAT. I’ve read that most people put a couple hundred hours of study time into it before the exam. Many of the people from this forum page say that they prepare themselves first by taking a diagnostic test and seeing how well they score. This allows them to see their weaknesses and make adjustments to get to the score they are wanting. After this the general consensus seems to suggest that most people study about 20-30 hours a week for about a 3 months or so before taking the exam.
My plan, from the way I can see what is best to do for me, is to start studying about 10 hours a week now with plans to take the test next September. That is a whole year before the test. That’s 12 months, 52 weeks of study time. This should help me tremendously, as long as I’m not a bigger dumb ass than I think I am. I then plan to take a prep course next semester…. probably January, at FSU in Tallahassee.
This is the book I have and plan to use:
My thinking behind this is a couple months of my own study time should give me an decent introduction. The prep class will then give me the foundation upon which to study in a correct manner for this. So, the class is 5 weeks. That means by March I will be done with it and studying on my own again. I plan to continue to study 10 hours a week until summer comes. With summer here I will prepare with the last 3 months before the exam studying 20 hours a week.
This all may seem like a lot of overkill for the test but I really want to do good on it and I can’t risk it by underestimating just how dumb I may be. As I have said before it looks like I will need a 167 on the LSAT if I were to earn a 3.0 GPA. I’m not going to get a 3.0, but I’m playing the whole plan for the worst and hope for the best game right now.
So a year of study time should garner me a 167 on the LSAT. If it doesn’t… I will kill myself…. via webcam live on this website. Tune in.
How Much Land Used to Be Spanish Florida
*EDIT* Technically Florida was originally the entire North American continent. When the Spanish found it they thought it was an Island and claimed all of it, even the parts they didn’t yet explore, which went all the way north and west. However, they couldn’t keep all them other bastards from landing on their massive island and starting colonies of their own.
Florida has taken many shapes over the years under a number of flags. What we do know is tat the official discovery of Florida was by Juan Ponce de Leon somewhere on the Atlantic side of the peninsula. Therefore, we do know that during this time the peninsula was part of Florida. De Leon named the territory Florida either because the area was in bloom (as florida means flowery en espanol) or because it was basically Easter or some shit.
From what I’ve read also, many people think he was looking for a fountain of youth. Most accounts of this come decades after his discovery, so this most likely is not true. Most more possible is he was looking for gold to buy some slaves or capture some Indians to enslave them. Either way he wanted some land and slaves to run it. Conquistadors were hip to the modern civil rights movement of the 16th century.
Over that period of the entire peninsula was under control of the Spanish with no permanent settlements. The first permanent settlement would come in 1565 with St. Augustine, the future capital of Spanish Florida, which would be further to the north. During this time the northern section of present day Florida would come under Spanish control.
Through many exchanges of land through treaties and other nonsense that was typical of the 18th centrury Florida grew to swell much larger than its present boundaries. It acquired land from the French in some way taking over part of Louisiana, this was a complicated boring process that no one much cares about. Spain then lost this land somehow, more boring snooze fest. Then in 1763 Spanish Florida became English Florida threw some other bullshit, a swap meet I’m guessing. England would hold onto this land for 20 years until they lost the war against in America in 1783. However, during those 20 years England was kick ass at collecting land adding it to Florida’s collection of swampland and other useless shit that no one wanted. Florida was essentially the waste basket of North America. If the land sucks just add it to the Florida territory. So the land was massive after England relinquished power. It took over all of present Florida, some of southern Georgia, half of Alabama, half of Mississippi, and a chunk of Louisiana. Here is a map of Spanish Florida in 1803.
Now from what I can gather this is basically the shape that Florida was in according to the Americans. Now if you were to redraw this map according to the Spanish it wouldn’t look too different. It would just have a few minor changes in their favor. Obviously ;)
I took the liberty of drawing up a map to show basically what Spanish Florida looked like at its largest size according to the Spanish.
There were a lot of dispute over this land and much of it was never recognized by anyone other than Spain. After the United States got a hold of the land in 1819 they split it up in ways they saw fit to serve present states and territories. Most of the land makes up present day Florida, but as you can see a lot of land becomes part of several other states.Spanish Florida
fountain of youth
Beginning of the End
late 19th and early 20th century: turn of the century
Many Agendas Organize
Pleve begins to have trouble with this situation because because essentially political organizations are illegal in Russia at this time… AND they have grown violent.
The radical left essentially has two groups. The SR’s (a Populist group called Social Revolutionaries) and the Marxists, which will break into two groups on their own later. The radical left wants to get rid of the entire government… Good Riddance. Nobody wants a taxation without representation and a leader that blows that money on beard grooming products.
The Moderates organize under a few names, most notably the CADETS (Constitutional Democrats yadda yadda). These guys want to want to keep the Tsar, but have more of a constitutional monarchy with a parliament… Not exciting, but practical. Seems they just want to copy the rest of Europe.
Then you have the radical right. What is their agenda, you might think? Well their agenda wasn’t political, it was racial. Kill all the minorities. These people consisted mostly of the rich aristocracy already and didn’t really see a need for change, obviously. Why would you want change when you got everything you want? They saw the minorities as a threat to their livelihood. All non Russians and especially Jews had to fear them. They were essentially Russia’s version of the KKK, except they weren’t rednecks.
Pleve naturally hated these organizations because as Minister of the Interior he had to maintain public order. How can you have order with everyone running around recruiting one another to kill the aristocracy? Oh yeah, did I mention that some of these groups were putting hits out on not only each other, the competition, but also the political leaders? Awesome shit.
The SR’s want to organize all of the peasants in Russia to take over and dispose of the Tsar. Not a bad idea really considering that 70% of the country consisted of peasants. The Marxists wanted to recruit all of the workers and make it more of a workers revolution. This idea is also not bad, but there really isn’t enough workers in Russia at this time for the idea to have much clout. Russia had no economy, therefore, no workers. Read more
20th Century Russia
Hoping for the Open Source to Change
Hoping for the U.S. Government to be efficient is admittedly an exercise in futility. Unfortunately we have resigned ourselves to the fact that the government will be hopelessly inefficient until the end of time. Between local, state and federal U.S. Governments we spend an untold amount of money on proprietary software such as Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office. The non computer savvy may say well what are we supposed to do, what choice do we have?
Open Source software is a legitimate alternative to proprietary software. Gone are the days of Open Source software being super geeky. Between OpenOffice and variants of Linux our government could save billions of dollars. So why does the government not do this?
Most in the government whom make these decision are not exactly computer savvy.
The government has rules in place that the software it uses has to meet certain security requirements. The certification process is not exactly inexpensive.
Our officials are often for sale at our expense. According to watchdog OpenSecrets Microsoft spent $4 billion towards US campaigns and politicians in 2008.
Science / Techology
The American Dreadnought
“We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union,” assemble ourselves as semi-maneuverable cogs in the framework of a pumping heart in a grievous machine we all call home. It can safely be said that not much of anything we do means much more than merely contributing to the insured survival of this colossal dreadnought, of which we are a part of, and cannot escape. From the beginning of our educations we are persuaded to believe that our vitality as a whole is in our success, a success that is not earned, but purchased.
It is this education that I have recently begun to question. It’s not due to the fact that I feel as dispensable as we all obviously are, despite being told otherwise. It’s the fact nothing seems to have a real value except the arbitrary ones assigned by mankind’s capricious methods. Is the quality of this intricately designed and laid out path worth as much as we all assume it is? I try too see beyond this fickle nature with less blemished eyes, but I haven’t been rewarded with the ability to continue on seeing through these gilded ones our society has so graciously given me. It pains me to think I know beyond what my eyes allow me to see. This is paranoia. This is me… and possibly you.
Daily, the cog that I am finishes another revolution with no end in sight. I spin out of control safely within the bounds of our macrostructure. Nothing like spinning, particularly this kind, will ever make you so sick. My semi-maneuverable nature gives way to a wobble that gracefully adds its touch to my gyrating syndrome while being force fed ideas of what I should do, how I should do it, and when. We are preprogrammed to spin our desire out until the teeth of our cogs wear thin, at which point we graduate and are rewarded with upward mobility; now a larger cog with more, longer and sharper teeth which we will utilize to dig ourselves into the dreadnought even further, like throwing an anchor off a spinning merry-go-round and watching inertia play its fun little game, you don’t come to an immediate stop, though the process has started, but you watch that anchor dig in, insuring your escape is undesirable and woefully impossible.