How do you ask a question?

 

Aaron Freiwald, Managing Partner of Freiwald Law and host of the weekly podcast, Good Law | Bad Law, is joined by one of the country’s leading trial attorneys, Shanin Specter, of Kline & Specter, P.C., to discuss the idea, and the importance, of questions – both in the legal field and our everyday lives. How should we be asking questions? What kind of questions should we be asking? And moreover, what makes someone a ‘good questioner’?

 

A pre-eminent courtroom lawyer, since 2000, Shanin has taught at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School and since 2015, has taught at UC Hastings College of the Law, UC Berkeley School of Law and Stanford Law School respectively. As a lecturer and an adjunct professor, Shanin teaches a class that is completely focused on today’s topic. Shanin explains how central asking questions is to the role of being an effective attorney and gives listeners a glimpse into his course curriculum. Aaron and Shanin talk about the importance of being a good questioner, of being a good listener, how to get your point across to a fact finder, and more. The two share their own experiences in the court room, offering valuable insights, tips, tricks, and opinions. Shanin and Aaron have a timely discussion about the public hearings beginning this week in the impeachment inquiry of President Trump, specifically referencing the significance of effective questioning by both Republicans and Democrats, as well as why it matters.

 

A founding partner of Kline & Specter, Shanin concentrates on catastrophic injury litigation. He has obtained more than 200 settlements or verdicts in excess of $1 million and is a member of the Inner Circle of Advocates. A graduate of Penn’s Carey Law, Shanin’s legal victories have included cases involving medical malpractice, defective products, medical devices, premises liability, motor vehicle accidents and general negligence. Beyond winning monetary compensation for his clients, Shanin’s cases have also prompted societal changes, including improvements to vehicle safety, nursing and hospital procedures, training for the use of CPR at public institutions, among others. Shanin is admitted to practice in the U.S. Supreme Court, the Third, Fourth and Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeal, the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of Pennsylvania and the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.

 

To learn more about Shanin please visit his firm’s website here.

 

Host: Aaron Freiwald

Guest: Shanin Specter

 

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“The Holocaust is not mere history, and the memorial landscape barely hints at the maelstrom of reverberations of the Nazi era at a personal level.”

 

Aaron Freiwald, Managing Partner of Freiwald Law and host of the weekly podcast, Good Law | Bad Law, is joined by Professor Mary Fulbrook, from University College London, to discuss her recent book, “Reckonings: Legacies of Nazi Persecution and the Quest for Justice," and the overarching themes that impact our world today.

 

Professor Fulbrook’s book expands our understandings of Germany’s past, exploring the ways in which individuals became enablers and accomplices to the perpetrators, the diversity of experiences among a wide range of victims as they struggled and died, or managed, against all odds to survive and the continuing legacy of Nazi persecution across generations and continents. The process Mary illuminates is how the lives of individuals across a full spectrum of suffering and guilt, capture one small part of the greater story. Aaron and Mary delve into these concepts and more, diving deep into Mary’s work on the book as well as her research on the area as a whole.

 

Mary and Aaron talk about Mary’s personal background and family history, the shaping of history versus that of memory, the failures of the legal system, comparative geo-political locations, and the landscapes of Western and Eastern Europe. They discuss the miscarriages of justice, the memorialization that has happened since, and the impact of the Holocaust on today as well as the past.

 

Professor Fulbrook is currently directing a funded collaborative research project on ‘Compromised Identities? Reflections on perpetration and complicity under Nazism’ (2018-2021.) Joining UCL in October of 1983, she is Professor of German History, having studied at Newnham College, Cambridge as an undergraduate, and at Harvard University, where she did her MA and PhD. Professor Fulbrook currently supervises a number of PhD students on topics on modern German and European history. Her teaching has ranged from introductory courses on German history from medieval times to the present, through to more specialized source-led teaching on the German Democratic Republic, and MA courses on ‘Theoretical Issues in History and Literature,’ and ‘The Making of Modern Europe.’ Professor Fulbrook’s work continually includes themes such as European Studies, Heritage, History and Cultures, and Language, Linguistics and Literature.  

 

Among wider professional commitments, Professor Fulbrook is a member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Memorial Foundation for the former concentration camps of Buchenwald and Mittelbau-Dora. She has served on the Council of the British Academy, and as Chair of its Modern History Section. She was a member of the Advisory Board of the German Historical Institute London; and a member of the International Advisory Board of the Bundeskanzler-Willy-Brandt-Stiftung. She currently serves on the Editorial Boards of German Politics and Society, and of Zeithistorische Forschungen. She was the first female Chair of the German History Society, and was joint founding Editor of its journal, German History.

 

To find a copy of Professor Fulbrook’s book, please click here.

To learn more about Professor Fulbrook and her research, please visit her bio page at UCL by clicking here.

 

Host: Aaron Freiwald

Guest: Mary Fulbrook

 

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What lessons can we learn from the Watergate investigation? Nixon’s impeachment? And, how does the Nixon era compare to today’s political and social climate?

 

Aaron Freiwald, Managing Partner of Freiwald Law and host of the weekly podcast, Good Law | Bad Law, is joined by Henry Hecht, a Lecturer at Berkeley Law and a former Assistant Watergate Special Prosecutor, to discuss the investigation into the Watergate Scandal, the similarities and differences between Trump and Nixon, as well as what this may mean for the current impeachment investigation.

 

A colleague of Larry Hammond, one of our previous guests, Henry joined Larry and 15 other former Watergate special prosecutors, in penning a recent Washington Post op-ed arguing why President Trump should be impeached.  The article entitled, “We investigated the Watergate scandal. We believe Trump should be impeached,” is clear. Based on their own accounts, Henry and his colleges make a compelling argument that there is already enough evidence to support the impeachment of Trump. In the 1970s, they investigated serious abuses of presidential power by President Nixon and, in the article, they detail their beliefs that Trump should face the same charges, specifically citing: obstruction of justice, abuse of power, and contempt of Congress. Henry and Aaron take a deep dive into the reasoning behind this decision, exploring the rule of law, the historical elements of impeachment, and more.  

 

A Harvard Law graduate in 1973, Henry was the “baby” of the prosecutorial team. Throughout today’s episode, he shares his personal and professional stories of his time as an investigator, the lessons he’s learned from his experiences, and his opinions on Trump, the administration, and today’s political culture. Aaron and Henry talk about what makes the Nixon impeachment similar, and different, from the investigation surrounding Trump – touching specifically on the Ukraine allegations, the Mueller report, and the idea of how Trump and Nixon treated “executive privilege.” Henry and Aaron discuss the process of impeachment, our U.S. constitution and the rule of law, as well as the importance of language and semantics.

 

Henry served as an Assistant Special Prosecutor on the Watergate Special Prosecution Force from 1973 to 1976, and was Special Counsel to the San Francisco firm of Heller Ehrman LLP from 1977 to 1983, joining the Berkeley Law Faculty in 1983. An independent consultant on skills training for lawyers, Henry is the co-founder of The Hecht Training Group, a group of attorneys who have each taught lawyering skills for more than 35 years. Henry’s Training Group utilizes the “learning by doing” method, presenting workshops on deposition, negotiation, motion practice, evidence, and trial skills to more than 70 law firms, corporate law offices, government agencies, and bar associations across the country. 

 

Henry has lectured and written extensively for the America Bar Association, the American Law Institute-American Bar Association, California Continuing Education of the Bar, the Practising Law Institute, and the National Practice Institute. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Practice Program for the United States District Court for the Northern District of California and the Andrew Levitt Center for Social Emergency Medicine. He also served on the Board of Directors of the East Bay Community Law Center for 16 years. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute and the American Bar Foundation.

 

 To learn more about The Hecht Training Group, please click here.

 

To find a copy of the Washington Post op-ed, “We investigated the Watergate scandal. We believe Trump should be impeached,” please visit the Post’s website here.

 

To check out United States v. Nixon, please click here.

 

To learn more about Mr. Hecht and to find a list of his publications, please click here.

 

Host: Aaron Freiwald

Guest: Henry Hecht

 

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What does the New York Exxon Trial mean? For the Country? The world? And moreover, what should we be doing about climate change?

 

Aaron Freiwald, Managing Partner of Freiwald Law and host of the weekly podcast, Good Law | Bad Law, is joined by Michael Gerrard, a law professor at Columbia Law School and the founder and director at the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, to discuss the breaking news happing in New York this week regarding the trial against Exxon Mobil, the implications that this trial has had already and may continue to have, as well as the issue of climate change itself.

 

In today’s episode, Aaron and Michael talk about the specifics of the New York Exxon Trial, the legal arguments surrounding the suit, and more. Michael and Aaron talk about this case’s potential impacts, considering it a possible bellwether case, and the notion of other states likely following New York’s example – specifically discussing Massachusetts recent filing against the oil giant. Aaron and Michael debate the role of these trials, considering the idea of these court records being documentation proving the existence and real threat of climate change. Michael explains some more substantive actions we can do in addition to filing these lawsuits, describing some more direct ways we can impact the emission of green house gases.

 

A graduate of Columbia and New York University School of Law, Michael teaches courses on environmental law, climate change law, and energy regulation. The Andrew Sabin Professor of Professional Practice at Columbia Law School, he chaired the faculty of Columbia University’s Earth Institute from 2015 to 2018. From 1979 through 2008, he practiced environmental law in New York, most recently as partner in charge of the New York Office of Arnold & Porter.  Upon joining the Law School faculty in 2009, Michael became the senior counsel to the firm. His practice involved trying numerous cases and arguing many appeals in federal and state courts and administrative tribunals; handling the environmental aspects of numerous transactions and development projects; and providing regulatory compliance advice to a wide variety of clients in the private and public sectors.

 

An author on the subjects of environmental law and climate change, Michael twice received the Association of American Publisher’s Best Law Book award for works on environmental law and brownfields. He has written or edited thirteen books, including Global Climate Change and U.S. Law, the leading work in its field, and the 12-volume Environmental Law Practice Guide. His most recent book is Legal Pathways to Deep Decarbonization in the United States.

 

To find more information about Michael Gerrard, please check out his Columbia Law bio here.

To find out more about the Sabin Center for Climate Change law, please visit their website here.

To find the New York complaint against Exxon, please click here.

To find the Massachusetts complaint against Exxon, please click here.

Please follow this link to Michael’s co-authored book, “Legal Pathways to Deep Decarbonization in the United States,” by clicking here.

To learn more about the pro-bono project that is developing model laws and regulations aimed at helping fight climate change, please click here.

To read Michael Gerrard’s Law 360 article, “How Lawyers Can Help Save The Planet,” please click here.

 

Host: Aaron Freiwald

Guest: Michael Gerrard

 

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Instagram: @GoodLawBadLaw

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How does the Trump impeachment investigation compare to the impeachment inquiry of Nixon?

 

Aaron Freiwald, Managing Partner of Freiwald Law and host of the weekly podcast, Good Law | Bad Law, is joined by Larry Hammond, an attorney and former Assistant Watergate Special Prosecutor, to discuss the Trump impeachment inquiry, the comparisons between Trump and Nixon, as well as Larry’s recent Washington Post article calling for the impeachment of the President.

 

Last week, 17 former Watergate special prosecutors, including our guest today, made a compelling case in the Washington Post for why President Trump should be impeached.  The article entitled, “We investigated the Watergate scandal. We believe Trump should be impeached,” doesn’t mince words. Based on their own accounts, Larry and his colleges make a compelling case for why Trump should be impeached, arguing that there is already enough evidence to support an impeachment. In the 1970s, they investigated serious abuses of presidential power by President Nixon and in the article they detail their beliefs that Trump should face the same charges, specifically citing: obstruction of justice, abuse of power, and contempt of Congress.

 

Currently the most senior member of Osborn Maledon’s investigations and criminal defense group, Larry details his time in Washington and his personal experience within the Watergate investigation. Larry and Aaron talk about his background and how he came to be on the prosecutorial team; they lay out the particular evidence Larry believes supports impeachment, including the ongoing conversation around Ukraine as well as Special Prosecutor Mueller’s investigation and findings. Aaron and Larry compare Trump and Nixon to the Clinton impeachment and debate the different dimensions present in each.

 

Larry’s practice focuses primarily on criminal defense – both white collar and general criminal representation, but he has also been extensively involved in complex civil litigation. After clerkships on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, two Supreme Court Clerkships (for Justice Hugo L. Black and Lewis F. Powell, Jr.), and his time as Assistant Watergate Special Prosecutor, Larry served as the First Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel at the Department of Justice. A founder and former President of the Arizona Justice Project, Larry is often known best for his work in very high-profile criminal cases, including his work on behalf of the indigent defense community. He also helped found the Arizona Capital Representation Project to assist inmates charged or convicted of capital crimes, and served as the Chair of the State Bar’s Indigent Defense Task Force. In 2005-2007, Larry was the President of the American Judicature Society – an organization devoted to improving the administration of justice in America.

 

To find a copy of the Washington Post op-ed, “We investigated the Watergate scandal. We believe Trump should be impeached,” please visit the Post’s website here.

To check out United States v. Nixon, please click here. You can find Chief Justice Warren Burger’s opinion by following the link, as well as the facts of the case and more. 

 

To learn more about Mr. Hammond, please visit his firm’s website, Osborn Maledon, here.

 

Host: Aaron Freiwald

Guest: Larry Hammond

 

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