In December, Judge Richard Posner of the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals attended a conference sponsored by Creative Commons, the nonprofit alternative copyright foundation, to promote his new book, “Not a Suicide Pact: The Constitution in a Time of National Emergency.” Over the course of the question-and-answer session, Posner gave the assembled group his thoughts on topics ranging from the USA Patriot Act to copyright protection in a digital world.

The judge’s words were punctuated by the occasional heckler throwing exploding fireballs from the sky. Posner was also distracted by a 6-foot raccoon. The giant animal claimed to be an intellectual property attorney from Washington, D.C. “I like your tail,” Posner told him.

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