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November 27, 2016

A formal agenda for our final THREE classes to ensure we stay on task and cover the federal guideline sentencing system

Despite this prior post intended to help ensure we stayed on task in class, the energies of the post-election period — and my own struggle with figuring out what should be a sentencing priority in a Trumpian world — led me to fail badly in this regard before Turkey Day.  But a personal and temporal break, and especially the (sad) reality that we only have a final three classes together, should help me be a sentencing task master in our remaining minutes together.  

To that end, I am here presenting a formal agenda for our final classes to ensure everyone knows where I want us to be headed and also to make sure you all can do the essential out-of-class work/reading:

Monday, Nov 28:  Briefly review my "textbook" behavior; review option(s)/deadline(s) for final mini-paper(s); discuss the pre-modern reform sentencing of Rob Anon.  Remember for the last item on this agenda, you must all come to class with an exact sentence you wish to impose on Rob Anon assuming you are a sentencing judge sentencing him under federal sentencing law in 1975.  Remember that in 1975 federal prisoners were eligible for parole but only after serving at least 1/3 of the formal sentence announced at initial sentencing and when there were no federal mandatory minimum sentencing terms.

Tuesday, Nov 29: Answer questions regarding option(s)/deadline(s) for final mini-paper(s); review rules for final paper; review lessons from pre-modern reform sentencing of Rob Anon and start unpacking intricacies of pre-Booker federal guideline sentencing of Rob Anon (say circa 2000).  Figuring out what Rob Anon's federal sentencing guideline range would be under applicable laws can be aided by some of the discussion and links in this prior blog posting which inspired(?) students in March 2015 to work through Rob Anon's guideline calculations.

Wednesday, Nov 30:  Discuss insights and lessons from pre-modern reform and pre-Booker federal guideline sentencing of Rob Anon; unpacking the why and how of Booker's changes to the substance and style of federal sentencing, especially with respect to "Who-ville."  If time permits, focus on the particulars of the BridgeGate defendants' upcoming federal sentencings (some background here).....

AND IF TIME PERMITS Wrap up all course themes; review final class requirements; map out a plan for effective sentencing analyses and reform in a Trumpian world; reflect on low-stress, high-learning environments.


UPDATE:  I had the last entry pegged for Monday, Dec. 5, but Ashley in the comments clarified that next Monday is a constructive Thursday.  Ergo, it seems we only have 150 minutes left together, and so I will need to be even more focused throughout the next three classes.

November 27, 2016 | Permalink


Hi Professor Berman, thank you for this post. I just wanted to let you know Monday the 5th is actually a constructive Thursday for your planning purposes. See you tomorrow!

Posted by: Ashley Bailes | Nov 27, 2016 6:27:08 PM

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