Thursday, December 31, 2009

Let Me Give Thanks As We Close Out the First Decade of the New Millennium

My thanks at the end of the first decade of the New Millennium

To my incredible wife and family – Any woman who could remain married to me for 29 years, 4 months, and 1 day must be a saint and Goddess

To my wife and God – Having been the son of a single mom, and never having met my father, to my wife and God for two great sons

To the people of America who overcame centuries of racism to elect President Barack Obama and Governor Deval Patrick

To the 537 voters in Florida who provided the margin of victory for President Bush – As every day goes by, we realize how fortunate America was not to have the insufferable Al Gore as President

To President Bush – President Obama will inadvertently rehabilitate you

To Vice President Cheney for continuing to speak out and fight the good fight. Vice President Chaney may be our Winston Churchill

To President Jimmy Carter for converting me into a conservative

To Senator John McCain for bringing Governor Sarah Palin into national prominence

To General David Petreas

To the voters of California for recalling Governor Gray Davis - Governor Schwarzenegger, for all his faults, is a dramatic improvement

To the Jesuits of the University of San Francisco – As every day goes by, I value more and more the Jesuit education

To San Francisco – I may make fun of the political excesses of the city, but I was born, raised, and educated in San Francisco. I love San Francisco and am honored to be from one of the world’s greatest cities.

To California – My true home for this son of California

To my mom and San Francisco for teaching me tolerance

To the Sierra Club

To the University of Michigan School of Law, Dean Francis A. Allen, Professor Roger Cunningham and Professor Peter O. Steiner for having faith in me, investing in me, and mentoring me

To Professor Joseph A. Sax for teaching me Environmental Law and Natural Resources

To Lloyd Carr for winning a national football championship at Michigan during my lifetime

To the great state of Michigan – may better times come soon

To Professor J. Thomas McCarthy, after whom I have modeled my teaching

To Ohio Northern University for my first teaching job

To Ada, Ohio for educating me on the values, mores, and strengths of the heartland of America

To John Riordan – for hiring me as a law clerk at Darwin & Riordan and dumping the first case on me – involving sex discrimination in the airline industry

To Jim Walsh, District Counsel of the Seattle District of the Army Corps of Engineers, who hired me as a 100 day consultant in 1976 to research an Indian Law problem

To Washington State and Puget Sound – for experiencing God’s Country

To Western New England College, Dean Howard I. Kalodner, and Professors George Thompson and John J. O’Connor, Jr. for rescuing my career

To Don Dunn

To Massachusetts for its history, beauty, and traditions

To Springfield, Massachusetts and the sense of community

To New York – I love the City, State and New Yorkers from my first presence in New York in 1971. My love is even greater since my wife is a New Yorker

To President Jim Doti and Chapman University for welcoming me into the Chapman community

To my colleagues at Chapman University for electing me four years ago as their President of the Faculty Senate, the crowning point of my academic career and the acceptance of the young law school by the historic university

To all the students I have taught over the past 37 years – All the young dynamic students who keep my mind, heart, and soul young. I teach to give back. Teaching has never been a job

To all my colleagues over the years -I have learned something from everyone of you

To my young colleague, Deepa Badrinarayana, who invited me to give a talk in New Delhi last summer, allowing me to visit the Taj Mahal, the second most beautiful thing I have ever seen, my wife being the first

To the internet for feeding my ego by allowing me to publish an idiosyncratic and eclectic, irregular blog, which I am presumptuous enough to think more people read than my law review articles

To my friends and colleagues of the University of Michigan Alumni of Orange County, who welcomed me into their company as they do all Michigan alums. Go blue!

To the OC – I wished I could have moved here 2 decades earlier

To Dr. Paul Vollucci, and the other doctors, nurses, and staff of Kaiser for keeping me going the past couple of years, as my asthma worsened and my body experienced the normal wear and tear of the aging process

To America, the greatest country in world history

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