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Tag Archives: Ben Williams

BEN WILLIAMS — The U.S. Supreme Court Mississippi flag order that wasn’t

Marshall Ramsey’s September 3 cartoon, depicting Governor Bryant as a Confederate soldier writing home about defending the flag on order of the “Yankee Supreme Court,” is quite clever and well-drawn.  The immensely-talented cartoonist is a credit to the State of Mississippi.  This particular cartoon, however, may perpetuate recent indistinct and misleading news reports.  Counter to published reports in various news ...

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COMMERCIAL FINANCE 701: The Passing of LIBOR

The death knell for LIBOR officially sounded on July 27, 2017, when the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority broadcast it would cease maintenance of the internationally-used interest rate benchmark beyond December 31, 2021.  The surprise announcement was surprising only as to the timing of the press release and the sunset date.  The Wall Street Journal dissed the rate back in 2008 ...

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BEN WILLIAMS — The one U.S. Supreme Court opinion to read in 2017

The U.S. Supreme Court’s regular term ended Friday, June 30, 2017, and the nine lifetime Justices began their summer recesses. A vacant seat and a perceived 4-4 ideological split clouded expectations in October when the court term began.  Six months into the session, Justice Gorsuch joined the bench in a televised swearing-in ceremony conducted by swing-vote Justice Kennedy at the ...

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BEN WILLIAMS — A cocktail party guide to Constitutional Law

Let’s face it. The last time you studied constitutional law, marriage probably involved opposite genders. With the Donald in office and Anderson Cooper fulminating, we could all use a refresher on Con Law if for no other reason than to impugn the media’s talking heads and occasionally float a zinger at a cocktail party. The Backdrop.   The perfervid Declaration ...

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COMMERCIAL FINANCE 701 — The powerless power of attorney

The long-awaited closing date on the $21.5million commercial construction loan is finally here.  Construction projects involve numerous moving parts. By the time a loan closing occurs, the out-of-pocket developer on the project awaits a hefty advance. The borrower, a Mississippi limited liability company, has two members – one of whom serves as the managing member.  The managing member is present ...

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BEN WILLIAMS — Gorsuch: The one Protestant

On April 10, 2017, the unorthodox 6-year, 11-month, 21-day drought of a Protestant on the U.S. Supreme Court presumably ended.  With his English wife of 20 years by his side and left hand resolutely on the family NIV Study Bible, Neil Gorsuch accepted the second lifetime appointment of his brief forty-nine year life. I say “presumably” because the country’s first ...

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BEN WILLIAMS — A primer on the nuclear option

What with all the jabber about the possibility of U.S. Senate Republicans exercising the “nuclear option,” an abbreviated primer on the parliamentary procedure seems appropriate. Senate Rules & Cloture: Yes, the French have a word for everything. As the self-proclaimed “world’s greatest deliberative body,” the 100-person U.S. Senate has long prided itself on allowing unlimited debate.  If a senator desired ...

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COMMERCIAL FINANCE 701 — The outlook in Mississippi for 2017

Michael Lewis’ new book – The Undoing Project – should be the starting point for any projections about commercial finance in Mississippi during 2017.  The book underscores our defective reasoning process that routinely (1) underestimates uncertainty, (2) places too much weight on limited observations, and (3) ignores biases.  With those caveats in mind, we guesstimate the outlook for commercial finance ...

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COMMERCIAL FINANCE 701: Zoning – trust, but verify, authenticate & insure

Zoning plays a critical role throughout the life of a commercial development.  In terms of reviewing zoning status, the Reagan-adopted “trust, but verify” adage should come to mind.  Zoning, however, can be quite complex and the more appropriate proverb might be “trust, but verify, authenticate and insure.” As the term is generally used, “zoning” refers to the approved usage of ...

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BEN WILLIAMS: The one U.S. Supreme Court opinion to read in 2016

The U.S. Supreme Court’s regular term ended June 27, and the eight remaining life-time Article III Justices released their final opinions.    A 5-4 decision, or more recently 5-3 due to the passing of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, is cause célèbre.  Those rulings receive sports-like coverage, complete with scores, action shots and quotes from the victorious fans. You’ll hear much ...

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