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What else happened at the Supreme Court this week? As we reported yesterday, a case that's going to be of significance to patent trolls and the people who fight against them.

But there were two other opinions released yesterday, dealing with more the more prosaic topics of bankruptcy and whistleblowing. ("Patents aren't prosaic?" you're asking. The answer is "no." They're very exciting.)

So, let's see what else the Court did to put your tax dollars to work.

Teeth whitening may not be "the practice of dentistry." Who knew? On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court declared, 6-3, that the determinations of a state regulatory board can be actionable as antitrust if the board is composed of market participants who are using the power of the state to shut out competition.

The Court's opinion extended the doctrine of state-action antitrust immunity to include state regulatory agencies composed of private market participants. Before this case, it applied only to private bodies granted state regulatory authority, or other private entities effectively engaging in state action.

SCOTUS Maintains Veil of Secrecy Over Juror Deliberations

What happens in the juror room stays in the juror room (unless it's a mock trial and you get to watch hidden cameras and the foreperson who is a lawyer in real life declares himself as such and misstates the law, causing you to lose your graded mock trial final -- sorry, I'm still bitter).

Gregory Warger was riding his motorcycle when Randy Shauers clipped him. Fault was at issue, as was the proper measure of damages, but in the end, the jury sided with Shauers. Warger, after losing a leg in the accident, got nothing.

But then a spark of hope emerged: It turns out the foreperson had lied during voir dire when she was asked if there was any reason why she could not award damages. During deliberations, she told her fellow jurors that her daughter had been at fault in an accident and a lawsuit would have ruined her daughter's life. Someone leaked this to the lawyers and signed an affidavit. Warger wanted a new trial.

Too bad.

2 Burning Questions Answered Re: Inherited IRAs and Lanham Claims

Have you ever stayed up late at night, unable to sleep, wondering if maybe, just maybe, your inherited IRA assets might be exposed to creditors in bankruptcy? Don't worry, you are not alone.

Or perhaps, maybe, just maybe, you thought to yourself: Pomegranate juice? Coca Cola, dag nabbit, there ain't hardly any juice in this here drink at all! And instead of lying there, disillusioned over the lies of a corporate behemoth, you sought to strike back. Have you ever wondered if you could, perhaps using the Lanham Act?

Many Notable Denials on the Court's First Day Back

Habeas corpus is all but dead, gun rights mean nothing (especially for 18 to 21-year-olds), the Feds will break up your neighborhood poker game, and the Supreme Court's rulings in the Washing Machine Cases were ignored completely.

Yes, these are all exaggerations of the effects of the most notable of today's many denials, found amongst a 46-page orders list. But in fact, the Court did not grant any new cases. Here are the ones that we were keeping an eye on:

Snippets: Two Cases Granted, Aereo Doesn't Oppose Review

It's been an unusually busy day on First Street, with the court granting certiorari in two cases after yesterday's conference, and with a minor surprise in the ongoing nationwide litigation over Aereo, a service that streams local broadcast channels over the internet to subscribers.

The two new cases, Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoefer and Loughrin v. United States both involve banks, but that's where the similarities end. The former case asks whether a bank has a fiduciary duty to divest stock in itself from employees' stock plans when it knows or should know that it is engaging in risky (subprime lending) business practices. In the latter case, the Court will decide whether the government has to prove that a defendant who passed stolen checks at Target had the intent to defraud the bank or financial institution specifically.

Alito Questions Judge's Race and Gender Criteria for Class Counsel

Much like women who are online dating receive far more suitors than they can handle, the Supreme Court gets asked for a date far more often than it can (or will) accept. As a result, the grant rate for certiorari is a bit less than 1 percent.

With that in mind, the Monday orders list is usually a sad, yet uneventful waiting room full of spurned parties. Today? It was far from a riot, but there were a few notable cases, including the court's denial of a writ of mandamus in an NSA surveillance case and this, a half-hearted benchslap by Justice Alito.

Abortion Case Nixed, 9th Already Reversed, Cy Pres Procrastinated

Busy Monday.

This morning, the court released an orders list with quite a few surprises, including the Court's response to the Oklahoma Supreme Court's certified question answers in the medical abortion (RU-486 "off-label") dispute, a per curium reversal of a Ninth Circuit decision (the fun starts early, apparently), and finally, with a Schwarzenegger-esque, "we'll be back" sort-of-statement, Chief Justice Roberts announced the denial of certiorari in Mark v. Lane, a Facebook class-action settlement case.

Interested in the short version, rather than the court's 27-page orders list? Read on:

A Few Notable Denials on the Court's First Official Day

Though the Court granted certiorari in eight cases last week, the first official day of business is today, and the court rung in the new term with a lengthy 94-page orders list, most of which were denials.

Though the court's jurisdiction is discretionary, there are always a few surprises on the denials sheet, as well as a few that we wish they would've taken up. Here are some of those rejected petitions:

'Presumption Against Extraterritoriality' Bars Alien Tort Claim

A group of Nigerian plaintiffs claim that Royal Dutch Petroleum Company and Shell Transport and Trading Company -- which you probably know as Shell Oil -- aided and abetted the Nigerian government in committing human rights abuses against them. Those abuses included beating, raping, and arresting people, and destroying or looting property.

The plaintiffs sued the oil company in the U.S. under the Alien Tort Statute in 2002. Eleven years later, they have officially lost their case because the presumption against extraterritoriality applies to claims under the ATS, and the statute doesn't rebut that presumption.