Wednesday, September 30, 2015

"Square corners" jurisprudence

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A published opinion from 4/3 today here contains this line in the introduction:
Those who seek relief against a public entity are well advised to heed the warning of Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes: “Men must turn square corners when they deal with the Government. If it attaches even purely formal conditions to its consent to be sued those conditions must be complied with.” (Rock Island &c. R. R. v. United States (1920) 254 U.S. 141, 143.)
Which brings to mind the following other square corners citations:
 “[I]t is no less good morals and good law that the Government should turn square corners in dealing with the people than that the people should turn square corners with their government.”  St. Regis Paper Co. v. United States (1961) 368 U.S. 208, 229 (Black, J., dissenting).
“It has been aptly said:  ‘If we say with Mr. Justice Holmes, “Men must turn square corners when they deal with the Government,”’ it is hard to see why the government should not be held to a like standard of rectangular rectitude when dealing with its citizens.”  Farrell v. Placer County (1944) 23 Cal.2d 624, 628.
Want to know which Judicial Council committees various justices are on?
The lastest Judicial Council Advisory Committees Membership List is here.