Name That Vertical, The Contest

As some of you know, I have been writing posts and doing videos for my pal, Lee Pacchia, at Mimesis Law.  The idea is to create a legal news website based on substance rather than clickbait or the fluffiness that’s permeated so many other websites that make people stupider.  It will include different practice niches, and may well give the sort of people who go to the Puddle to learn how to be a lawyer a terrible headache. We can only hope, anyway.

So what’s a “vertical”?  It’s one of those cool, businessguy-type words that Lee likes to use to prove he’s not just another pretty face. In this instance, it’s going to be the criminal justice piece of Mimesis, kind of a cable channel for criminal law.  Think Velocity or Food Network, limited in scope and focused on one thing.

But it needs a name.  No, SJ can’t be the name, because it’s the name here.  Move on.

The name should convey its substance, that this will be about criminal law, the criminal justice system, and, of course, be sufficiently ironic to capture its injustice as well. I plan to include a wee bit of content about the failings of the system. I do that sometimes, you know.

So, what should we call it?  Beats the hell out of me. Lee has been trying to put together a name, but the ones he’s come up with just don’t turn my frown upside down.  And so, I turn to you, and because I know my faithful readers won’t do squat for me unless there is something in it for them (bastards), here’s the deal:

The person who comes up with the best name for the vertical will win, ta da, a copy of Nathan Burney’s brilliant “The Illustrated Guide to Criminal Law,” signed and with a remarkably inartful picture of a talking pineapple by someone whose name appears briefly on the cover.

This is suitable for framing, provided you’re of the sort that has framed stuff in your personal favorite reading location.  You can also give it to the kids for Christmas, though you really should give them their own copy because yours, after you’ve read it, will be kind of disgusting.  Or at least that’s what I’m told.

As with all contests here, the winner will be decided by my arbitrary and capricious decision, meaning that you get no vote and if you don’t like my choice, tough nuggies.  Now do me a solid and come up with a good name.  Please!

136 thoughts on “Name That Vertical, The Contest

  1. Kathleen Casey

    The Purpose of a Trial

    “The purpose of a trial is as much the acquittal of an innocent person as it is the conviction of a guilty one.”
    Application of Kapatos, 208 F.Supp. 883, 888 (SDNY 1962); quoted in U.S. v. Bagley, 473 U.S. 667, 692 (1985) [Justice Marshall joined by J.Brennan, dissenting].

  2. Robert Davidson

    Criminally Interesting:
    Fixing the news that breaks

    Readers could be required to enter section numbers of a quoted law to prove they are worthy to comment (or at least have a legal reference). It would keep riff-raff like me out.

    1. Jeffrey L. Boyer

      For what it’s worth, Jeff’s ‘Discursive Violence’ is the only one that made me laugh. Nice use of applied learning!

      My brainstorm contribution: Legal Tender

      1. Sol Wisenberg

        No, silly. The air is dirty. The sex is clean. And her coffee makes my hair turn green.

  3. RollieB

    1) Not Equal Justice (using a symbol for not equal)

    2) It’s a Legal System – Not a Justice System

    3) Is it Legal – Is it Justice?

    …or something similar

      1. Kathleen Casey

        Irony. Black humor. The play on words. You won’t admit that you see those things. Isn’t that true?

  4. Patrick Maupin

    The Third Rail

    Although, as you might expect, a quick google shows that is as unoriginal as most of my ideas.

  5. Jyjon

    Juristic Snark

    Since this is a second entry, does this disqualify me. I searched for the fine print about how many entries are allowed, but couldn’t find it. Are you sure you’re a lawyer?

  6. Marshall

    Probative Value
    Judgment of Acquittal
    People Versus
    A Higher Degree of Persuasion (from Winship)

  7. Richard G. Kopf


    How about: “The Criminal Hymnal.”

    All the best.


    PS I also thought of “Hands up Don’t Shoot” and “No Justice, No Peace,” but then I realized that the use of the same would, of necessity, have required a trigger warning for old white guys.

  8. John

    Ah, the short phrase to convey many ideas challenge:
    Criminal Justice in Principle and in Practice (or Justice in Principle and in Practice)
    How the Criminal Justice System Really Works (or How the Justice System Really Works)
    Justice: How It Works, How It Fails
    Everything About Criminal Justice (or Everything About Justice)
    Inside Justice
    The Real Justice System
    JusticeTube (just kidding)
    Courthouse Network News (again, kidding)

    Okay, I only meant to peruse a few minutes. Back to work…

  9. WheezeThePupils™

    Criminals “R” Us (or U)
    Criminally Insane Justice
    Deaf, Dumb, and (Sometimes) Blind Criminal Law
    The Curmudgeon’s Guide to Criminal Law (and Sometimes Justice)
    “Said the Joker to the Thief” — The Criminal Law and Justice Rodeo
    A Grim Tale of Criminal Law and Justice Tail Chasing
    Criminal Justice — We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Badges!
    We the Criminals
    Today We Are All Criminals

  10. John Barleycorn

    Lifting the Blindfold

    Failing Affirmation

    Adjudication Audit

    Justice Arraigned

    Indigent Injunction

    Failure to Appear

    A Crisis in Continuance

    Justice Detained

    Fabricating Foundations

    Prostrating Prosecutions

    Gelded Justice

    Authenticating Apathy

  11. Mark Draughn

    Suspended Sentences
    Practical Justice
    Simple Justice 2 — Electric Bugaloo
    The Law Of Rule (Because you can’t go wrong stealing from Gamso)
    Arguing Justice
    Jew With a Legal Pad (An homage to Joel)
    Breaking Chains
    What Shall Become of The Innocent?
    Not Exactly Clarence Darrow (Also kind of Joel-ish)
    Beating the Rap
    Discursive Ninja
    Crime and Punishment and Zombies
    The Justice Grind
    By Means Not Justified

  12. Noah

    Mens Rea- A Criminal State of Mind
    Plain Error – Another School of Criminology and Shoe Repair
    Plea (and Trial) Colloquy
    Crimes and Misdemeanors- Justice Can Be a Terrible Thing

  13. Sara Morriss

    Go ahead: commit the crime of thinking without a license.
    (Is that incitement?)

    May I see your license to think?
    (How a lawyer answers vs. how a normal person answers)

    After thoughtcrimes come feelingcrimes.
    (What you don’t know about the law can hurt you)

  14. WheezeThePupils™

    The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of American Criminal Justice
    Rolling Snake Eyes: The Loaded Dice of the Loaded Criminal Justice System
    Living the American Nightmare: Surviving Criminal Law and Justice

  15. Neil Dunn

    Visualizing Legal Violence
    Law Made Pleasing with SHG
    Video Game Express: New Age Law with the Old Master
    And the Law Shall Set You Free
    Diagramming Legal Reasoning
    Visualizing Blind Justice

    1. David M.

      If New Age Law with the Old Master doesn’t win, Ima frown at you through the internet.

  16. Fubar


    The name should convey its substance, that this will be about criminal law, the criminal justice system, and, of course, be sufficiently ironic to capture its injustice as well.

    Late for the train, but here’s my entry: Trial Balances

    Multiple entendre here:

    Title of an anthology in which Marianne Moore introduced the poetry of then unknown young poet Elizabeth Bishop, circa 1934. So, there is history of the title for introducing new talent.

    In accounting, trial balances show that the value of the debit value balances equal the total of the credit value balances. The tentative or current bottom line, and all that.

    In law, no specific meaning, but suggests trial, weighing and balance by Justitia (Roman), Themis (Greek), or Lady Justice, allegorical personification of the moral force in judicial systems. Statues or other art representing Justitia depict her holding balance scales.

    Irony depends on how the viewer perceives the criminal justice system and trials.

  17. Bartleby the Scrivener

    Someone already took my favorite – mens rea.

    How about, “Before the Jury”

  18. Speedy

    The Red Lily
    Sleeping Under Bridges.

    “The Law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.” –Anatole France, Le Lys rogue (1894)

  19. the other rob

    I wanted to offer a witty Kafka reference, but I’m still worn out from the opening night of the Rush 40th anniversary tour (and the 6 hour drive each way) and have yet to imbibe enough coffee to accomplish actual thinking.

    Perhaps somebody more awake than I can take the Kafka idea and run with it?

  20. David Woycechowsky

    I’ll nominate:

    Beyond Reasonable Doubt . . .





  21. Veronica

    Well appealing to the young kids.. use an acronym

    BOF (boring old fart)
    TAE (total asshole extraordinaire)
    DWP (desperate wannabee professor)
    TF (total fucktard)

    Hope these help.

    Have a tummy rub day..or in your case a blow job one as you need it. Get that Doctor wife of hers to use her mouth to shut yours!

    1. SHG Post author

      Uh oh. Somebody doesn’t like me, which makes me very sad. And yet she still reads SJ, and is so strongly moved that she feels constrained to leave such a witty comment, which makes me happy again.

      1. Sarah

        On behalf of my gender, I apologize for Veronica’s needless sexualized comment. Some women are incapable of intelligent disagreement, so resort to such language. It’s very embarrassing that these women find it necessary to disgrace their gender and resort to such vulgarities.

  22. Bob

    Favorite comic of all time. Milo the ace law clerk laments on the lack of action in Bloom County, Steve Dallas is sleeping at his desk. Milo observes what the town really needs is TWO lawyers.

  23. Frank

    Now why do I have Weird Al’s “Mission Statement” from his latest album running through my head after reading this? (Not posting the URL. The boss can do that if he so desires.)

  24. Thomas R. Griffith

    And the ‘Winner’ is – The Legal News Network.
    LNN – Keeping it simple

    With some exceptions, the rest of the entries would make perfect titles for weekly segments (which makes everyone a winner in my book).

    (even if it isn’t it was fun to play – Name that Network)


  25. Angus

    Know Who Your Friends Are
    Knowing Who Your Friends Are

    Inspiration: “If you want to know who your friends are, get yourself a jail sentence.” – Charles Bukowski

  26. Mark W. Bennett

    “Legal News Network”?

    It is stupid.

    It is taken.

    And it fulfills zero of your criteria:

    The name should convey its substance, that this will be about criminal law, the criminal justice system, and, of course, be sufficiently ironic to capture its injustice as well.

    I’m waiting for this whole intellectual miscarriage to turn out to be an ill-timed April Fools joke at the expense of those who give a shit about “verticals.”

    1. SHG Post author

      Why go off on poor Thomas? He’s trying. Whole Intellectual miscarriage, eh? Got a nice ring to it.

        1. SHG Post author

          Please don’t needlessly use that word. It makes me vomit into my mouth a little every time I see it. Along with some other words as well.

            1. SHG Post author

              So help me out and come up with a word or description that won’t cause involuntarily physical reactions.

            2. Jeff Gamso

              Of course, I’m something of a luddite and don’t know the lingo of the interwhatervers, but I’ve read the post three times and watched the video and still haven’t got a clue what a “vertical” is.

              I do have some idea of what you’re planning, I think. At least, I do if it’s possible to grasp without any reference to lines either horizontal or.

              So maybe rather than come up with a better word, you could just scrap the one you’ve got and hate.

            3. SHG Post author

              Scrapping it’s easy, but I’m still left with something of a problem in trying to explain what the hell I’m talking about. If it makes you feel any better, I had no clue what he was talking about with vertical either. Kids.

            4. John Barleycorn

              Vertical integration is neither new nor trendy.

              I am very surprised you CDL’s haven’t had a few clients over the years whose own attempts to vertically integrate created the issues that brought them to your door.

              Speaking of vertical integration, that’s damn near what the criminal justice system is now is it not?

              You CDLs are getting run over and and outsourced as token advisors assisting your clients to pick the best pile of steaming shit piles they are overcharged with.

              The judges say meh and the band plays on…

              Heck fight back against the vertical integration of the criminal justice system and call your new gig:

              Fuck ‘um We’re Going To Trial!

              If you guys expand your reading material and listen to some of your clients business experience I am sure you could come up with a business plan that might even force the State Dragons to slow down enough to expose their soft under belly a bit more often for a thorough piercing here and there that might level them up a bit.

              Trouble is thats a very dangerous game for your clients, if you run the numbers, so you are fucked!

              Which brings me to my only bitch about CDLs. Which is you guys need to tighten up your corner of the guild even if it means creating a “gang” of sorts that takes the gloves off a bit more at the coffee nook with the prosecutors and judges you appear before and with regularly.

              Not that you don’t already do that everyday here and in person but just saying if you can’t figure out a way to get the state dragon to play by the rules which will expose its underbelly more often then what do you got to loose with a few head butts and broken noses at the coffee nook?

              Figuratively of course.

              However, it seems to me up here in the cheap seats that you guys might wake up one day to be completely vertically integrated if you don’t figure out something to put in play and wake some people up both inside and outside of the criminal justice system.

              Yeah, yeah…and I am not talking to you esteemed one, as you sharpen your sword here at SJ more regularly than judges stare off into empty space…but just saying there are forces that would be just fine with the vertical integration of the criminal justice system and dare I say more than a few CDL wouldn’t put up much of a fight if they could fit in as token advisors during the vertical integration as long as they get paid.

            5. SHG Post author

              You’re right, but it’s been tried and failed miserably. CDLs are feral cats. We don’t guild well. Hell, we can’t even agree on what our self-interest is, and we’re all over the board on it.

    1. SHG Post author

      Or I need a friend to help me with a less jaronistic word to explain it, but I don’t see that coming. It’s okay that you don’t think it’s a good idea. I was asking for help with a word, not validation.

      1. Mark W. Bennett

        If you can make me understand better, I’ll help. Apparently “vertical” is short for “vertical market,” which is “A market made up of similar businesses and customers with particular specialized needs.”

        What are the similar customers we’re talking about here? What are their needs?


        1. SHG Post author

          In this use, it’s a criminal law blog under the Mimesis Law umbrella, which will include other practice niches. But this one will be crim law, much like here but less about me and more about crim law.

          1. John Barleycorn

            Strap in…and I hope you find a name for your corner over there that keeps them all aware that Scott is not to cool with the vertical integration of criminal law.

            A blog that vertically integrates for all or most lawyers to find some content is one thing but criminal lawyers roll with leather coats and are not to be fucked with when it comes to principles and the gravity of the situation at hand throughout the system.

            P.S. Just don’t sing and burn that tan suit of yours.

          2. Mark W. Bennett

            So this “vertical” is simply another blog, with a different focus, on a different site?

            Then I’m going to go out on a huge limb* and suggest you call it a blog instead of a “vertical.” Unless you want me to make fun of you.

            I see that Luke Rioux had “Harmless Error,” which I think says all that needs to be said about the state of criminal justice.

            *Because huge limbs are safer, duh.

  27. WheezeThePustule™

    The Criminal Law Elevator: From the Penthouse to the Outhouse and Every Floor In Between
    The Criminal Justice System: For Better or for Worse

  28. Kevin Blackwell

    Law in a Time of Mass Incarceration
    A Hundred Years of Solitary Confinement
    Justice Delayed
    Immediately Apparent
    Furtive Movements in a High Crime Area

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