Saturday, October 19, 2002


Lessig takes a look at the arguments the copyright case he recently argued at the Supreme Court, breaking down the issues and the strategies beautifully and concluding with a singular, weblog-styled peroration:

Every night since Wednesday I have awoken in the middle of the night, to spend the rest of the night reanswering Justice Ginsburg, or asking Chief Justice Rehnquist just how he could distinguish Commerce from Copyright. The kind words of so many notwithstanding, I know and have always known I am not Larry Tribe, or Kathleen Sullivan. And if, after getting this so close to the right result, I have lost this by not being them, then I am not quite sure how I will live with that fact.

So please, no more of the bullshit about "rockstars" or "visionary." I've lived this struggle every moment of the last 4 years; it will take a long time for me to escape it, especially if we don't prevail. I want to turn my head elsewhere, and my heart elsewhere too. So I apologize if I don't follow up on this, or the arguments this might begin. Please, in the spirit of the best of this sphere, carry these argument along, and correct the many mistakes I have made. But I need a night when the limits of this lawyer don't keep this lawyer awake.

A remarkable glimpse at how the bright lights feel. There is something here in the spirit of the John-Abigal Adams letters, but there's also something entirely new, and something we'll want to remember, win or lose. Thanks, Aaron!