|Library of Congress photo of statue in Main Reading Room|
The legal issue is interesting, but I'll save that for another post.
Here, I'll just focus on the intriguing language of Judge Bruce M. Selya in writing the opinion. It includes footnote 5:
"The government conjures up a parade of horribles suggesting, for example, that corporations may stall settlement negotiations in order to build up imputed interest. Despite these glum predictions, we are confident that the world will remain firmly on its axis. Viewed in real-world terms, we think that - if we may borrow a phrase - the government's "[p]resent fears [a]re less than horrible imaginings." William Shakespeare, Macbeth, act 1, sc. 3 (circa 1606)."
And one more phrase - "to paint the lily" which a Google search tells me is from Shakespeare's King John (page 16).
The case also includes vocabulary worthy of preparatory study for the SAT exam. Do you know what these terms mean? (For assistance, check out http://dictionary.reference.com/.)
- infelicitous asymmetry
- patina of plausibility
Despite the advanced vocabulary spread throughout the opinion, Judge Selya also uses some everyday terms that are often not used in legal opinions, such as referring to $95 million as "a large chunk of money." (page 2)
A Google search on Judge Selya will tell you he has used complex vocabulary in other opinions.
What words come to mind for you about the opinion?