If there is one lesson to be learned about our judicial system over the past six years, it is this: we have no "institutions," only people. The mythology of "our institutions" exists mainly to protect officials in powerful positions from scrutiny and criticism. And there is no more "institutional" man
I spoke with Peabody-Award-winning journalist Trey Kay for his WV Public podcast "Us & Them." We discussed the Inflation Reduction Act, Joe Manchin's political present, and his future (partial spoiler: if there is one). Listen in particular for Mike Plante's insights – you could learn more about politics from him in an
[This post was originally published in The Atlantic, in March, 2021] In 2005, I gathered with my fellow West Virginia trial lawyers for our annual conference in Charleston, the state’s capital. After legal seminars, we headed for back rooms, where the gregarious group told stories, drank whiskey, and assessed
[This piece was originally published in the West Virginia Record in October, 2017] During the Civil War, flags on the battlefield had enormous tactical and strategic importance. Regimental flags allowed soldiers to know the position of their units, and which direction they should be moving to keep up with it.
[This piece was originally published in the Fayette Tribune in March 2017]. In Clint Eastwood’s masterpiece, The Outlaw Josey Wales, the wanted rebel, Josey, encounters four union soldiers outside a general store. A snake-oil salesman recognizes Josey and shouts his name. The soldiers know they have to try to