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No matter how you spin it or view it, there is no doubt that part of reason why we are in this economic mess is the deregulation of banks in the United States. Enter the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), created by Congress in July 2010 and set to go into effect July 21, 2011. For the first time, the federal government has created an agency to regulate the financial markets. Currently, only state attorney generals play this role. The ultimate goal of the CFPB is to 'make markets for consumer financial products and services work for Americans—whether they are applying for a mortgage, choosing among credit cards, or using any number of other consumer financial products.' (See here).

Early this month, the CFPB launched its website, ConsumerFinance.govElizabeth Warren, who headed up the creation of the CFPB, believes that CFPB could have prevented foreclosure fraud, particularly the bank taking advantage of homeowners who actually have good payment history. Let's hope that we see some change (pun intended) and hope that consumers become more educated as well.

Hiatus, but We’re Back!

Hello everyone. As you've noticed, the blog has been quiet, but the website has not. After a hiatus from blogging, I've returned, with a new website introducing our services, a lot of more to talk about it! So browse around and if you have any questions, feel free to contact us.
As a Muslim, I've chosen to abide by the 'halal' food rules. 'Halal' in Arabic literally means permissible and in the context food, usually refers to meat. It's the equivalent of kosher for Jews. Our livestock must be treated and slaughtered in a certain way, namely that it must slaughtered by the jugular vein and can not be beaten or abused to death. This means that animals that die as a result of stun gunning, as commonly practiced in mainstream slaughterhouses, is not permissible to eat.

So what does this have to do with Illinois consumer protection? Well, 815 ILCS 505/2LL of the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act requires that vendors display proof that their meat is halal. This raises the question, who on earth lies about whether the meat they sell is halal? Answer: Muslims.

Like any group, Muslims are not a monolith (this may come as a shock to some of you). Islamic law has varying opinions (another shocker). When it comes to meat, the most common opinion is that the meat must be slaughtered in a certain way and so on. The Qur'an does provide that meat slaughtered by 'the People of the Book' (ie, Jews and Christians) may also be consumed by Muslims. However, this opinion is taken out of context as some Muslims forget this allowance is in context of the way the Jews and Christians used to slaughter their own livestock and such practices are

Are Lawyers Inherently Corrupt?

A study on international corruption in the legal systems around the world found that corruption is alive and well. Some findings:

  • Nearly half of all respondents stated corruption was an issue in the legal profession in their own jurisdiction. The proportion was even higher – over 70 per cent – in the following regions: CIS, Africa, Latin America and, Baltic States and Eastern Europe.
  • More than a fifth of respondents said they have or may have been approached to act as an agent or middleman in a transaction that could reasonably be suspected to involve international corruption. Nearly a third of respondents said a legal professional they know has been involved in international corruption offences.
  • Nearly 30 per cent of respondents said they had lost business to corrupt law firms or individuals who have engaged in international bribery and corruption.

Ok, so I admit to insinuate that lawyers are inherently corrupt is unfair and superficial, but let's face it, corruption IS abound in the legal system. Surely, something about getting a J.D. does not automatically make one lose all sense of morality and ethics. Actually, I find this article quite timely as some of my family members and close friends were discussing this matter. My non-lawyer friends and family couldn't help but to notice that every other attorney they have met has some sort of crooked streak to them.

I think it comes down to
One of the leading thinkers in Cyber Law, Lawrence Lessigreviews The Social Network on The New Republic. Check it out. Here's an excerpt:

Did Zuckerberg breach his contract? Maybe, for which the damages are more like $650, not $65 million. Did he steal a trade secret? Absolutely not. Did he steal any other "property"? Absolutely not—the code for Facebook was his, and the "idea" of a social network is not a patent. It wasn't justice that gave the twins $65 million; it was the fear of a random and inefficient system of law. That system is a tax on innovation and creativity. That tax is the real villain here, not the innovator it burdened.