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A Computational Analysis Of Constitutional Polarization, David E. Pozen, Eric L. Talley, Julian Nyarko Jan 2019

A Computational Analysis Of Constitutional Polarization, David E. Pozen, Eric L. Talley, Julian Nyarko

Faculty Scholarship

This Article is the first to use computational methods to investigate the ideological and partisan structure of constitutional discourse outside the courts. We apply a range of machine-learning and text-analysis techniques to a newly available data set comprising all remarks made on the U.S. House and Senate floors from 1873 to 2016, as well as a collection of more recent newspaper editorials. Among other findings, we demonstrate (1) that constitutional discourse has grown increasingly polarized over the past four decades; (2) that polarization has grown faster in constitutional discourse than in nonconstitutional discourse; (3) that conservative-leaning speakers have driven ...


Text And Context: Contract Interpretation As Contract Design, Ronald J. Gilson, Charles F. Sabel, Robert E. Scott Jan 2014

Text And Context: Contract Interpretation As Contract Design, Ronald J. Gilson, Charles F. Sabel, Robert E. Scott

Faculty Scholarship

Contract interpretation remains the most important source of commercial litigation and the most contentious area of contemporary contract doctrine and scholarship. Two polar positions have competed for dominance in contract interpretation. In a textualist regime, generalist courts cannot consider context; in a contextualist regime, they must. Underlying this dispute are contrary assumptions about the prototypical contract each interpretive style addresses. For modern textualists, contracts are bespoke, between legally sophisticated parties who embed as much or as little of the contractual context as they wish in an integrated writing and prefer to protect their choices against judicial interference by an interpretive ...


Three Discount Windows, Kathryn Judge Jan 2014

Three Discount Windows, Kathryn Judge

Faculty Scholarship

It is widely assumed that the Federal Reserve is the lender of last resort in the United States and that the Fed's discount window is the primary mechanism through which it fulfills this role. Yet, when banks faced liquidity constraints during the 2007-2009 financial cfisis (the Cisis), the discount window played a relatively small role in providing banks much needed liquidity. This is not because banks forewent government-backed liquidity; rather, they sought it elsewhere. First, they increased their reliance on collateralized loans, known as advances, from the Federal Home Loan Bank System, a little-known government-sponsored enterprise that grew in ...


Extraterritorial Financial Regulation: Why E.T. Can't Come Home, John C. Coffee Jr. Jan 2014

Extraterritorial Financial Regulation: Why E.T. Can't Come Home, John C. Coffee Jr.

Faculty Scholarship

This Essay begins with a deliberately off-putting title: extraterritorial financial regulation. Old-time "conflict of laws" scholars would call this an oxymoron, pointing to recent Supreme Court decisions – most notably, Morrison v. National Australia Bank Ltd. and Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. – that have applied a strong presumption against extraterritoriality to curb the reach of U.S. law. Even those international law scholars who are sympathetic to the regulation of multinational financial institutions might prefer to avoid this term and talk instead of "global financial regulation" because they conceptualize international financial regulation as implemented through networks of cooperating multinational institutions ...


Accepting The Limits Of Tax Law And Economics, Alex Raskolnikov Jan 2013

Accepting The Limits Of Tax Law And Economics, Alex Raskolnikov

Faculty Scholarship

This Article explores the limits of tax law and economics, attributing them to the unique complexity of the tax optimization problem. Designers of the optimal tax system must account for the impossibility of deterring socially undesirable behavior, provide for redistribution, and minimize social costs on the basis of assumptions that are laden with deeply contested value judgments, pervasive empirical uncertainty, or both. Given these challenges, it is hardly surprising that economic theory has a much weaker connection to the content of our tax laws and their enforcement than it does to the content and enforcement of many other legal regimes ...


The Political Economy Of Dodd-Frank: Why Financial Reform Tends To Be Frustrated And Systemic Risk Perpetuated, John C. Coffee Jr. Jan 2012

The Political Economy Of Dodd-Frank: Why Financial Reform Tends To Be Frustrated And Systemic Risk Perpetuated, John C. Coffee Jr.

Faculty Scholarship

A good crisis should never go to waste. In the world of financial regulation, experience has shown – since at least the time of the South Sea Bubble three hundred years ago – that only after a catastrophic market collapse can legislators and regulators overcome the resistance of the financial community and adopt comprehensive "re-form" legislation. U.S. financial history both confirms and conforms to this generalization. The Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 were the product of the 1929 stock-market crash and the Great Depression, with their enactment following the inauguration of President Franklin Roosevelt in ...


The Past, The Present, And Future Of Legal Ethics: Three Comments For David Luban, William H. Simon Jan 2008

The Past, The Present, And Future Of Legal Ethics: Three Comments For David Luban, William H. Simon

Faculty Scholarship

David Luban helped invent the field of legal ethics some years ago; Legal Ethics and Human Dignity provides an opportunity to assess how it has developed. By way of both homage and critique, I offer three comments on central issues that the book raises: the nature of the moral foundations of lawyers' ethics; the relation of legal and ordinary moral norms in legal ethics decisions; and the relation of ethical norms and organization.

I associate the issue of moral foundations with the past because modern academic discussion of legal ethics began with this focus. The relationship between law and morals ...


What Caused Enron? A Capsule Social And Economic History Of The 1990s, John C. Coffee Jr. Jan 2004

What Caused Enron? A Capsule Social And Economic History Of The 1990s, John C. Coffee Jr.

Faculty Scholarship

The sudden explosion of corporate accounting scandals and related financial irregularities that burst over the financial markets between late 2001 and the first half of 2002 – Enron, WorldCom, Tyco, Adelphia and others – raises an obvious question: Why now? What explains the concentration of financial scandals at this moment in time? Much commentary has rounded up the usual suspects and placed the blame on a decline in business morality, an increase in "infectious greed," or other similarly subjective trends that cannot be reliably measured. Although none of these possibilities can be dismissed out of hand, approaches that simply reason backwards, proceeding ...


Educating Citizens, Peter L. Strauss Jan 2002

Educating Citizens, Peter L. Strauss

Faculty Scholarship

Socrates and his followers, the Cynics among them, put great store in educating the youths who would become the leaders of the Athenian republic. The Athenians agreed that education of their youth was of the utmost importance for their state, and executed Soc-rates for corrupting them. As I thought about how these concluding remarks could do more than cast a pale reflection of the extraordinary learning and thought that have preceded them, talking about education leapt to mind.


Secured Credit And Software Financing, Ronald J. Mann Jan 1999

Secured Credit And Software Financing, Ronald J. Mann

Faculty Scholarship

Software is a relatively new type of business asset, but already has taken on a central role in all sectors of the economy; when any asset brings such a crucial value to businesses, the desire for lending based on that asset cannot be far behind. Unfortunately, the existing academic literature contains no sustained examination of software-related lending.

Because the software industry is in its infancy, the existing empirical evidence is inadequate to support any understanding of it. Accordingly, I undertook a series of twenty-nine informal interviews with industry participants, including lenders in both the Massachusetts Route 128 corridor and Silicon ...


Gender Sex Agency And Discrimination: A Reply To Professor Abrams, Katherine M. Franke Jan 1998

Gender Sex Agency And Discrimination: A Reply To Professor Abrams, Katherine M. Franke

Faculty Scholarship

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, sexual harassment is the fastest-growing area of employment discrimination. In fact, the annual number of sexual harassment complaints filed with the EEOC has more than doubled in the last six years. No one, or at least no one who has given this problem her serious attention, can deny that workplace sexual harassment is a grave problem and that it significantly impedes women's entrance into many sectors of the wage labor market.

Notwithstanding these impressive numbers, sexual harassment legal doctrine remains remarkably undertheorized – particularly by the Supreme Court. For these and other reasons ...


The Truth About Secured Financing, Robert E. Scott Jan 1997

The Truth About Secured Financing, Robert E. Scott

Faculty Scholarship

The debate over the social value of secured credit (and the appropriate priority for secured claims in bankruptcy) is entering its nineteenth year. Yet the continuing publication of succeeding generations of articles exploring the topic have yielded precious little in the way of an emerging scholarly consensus about the nature and function of secured credit. Put simply, we still do not have a theory, of finance that explains why firms sometimes (but not always) issue secured debt rather than unsecured debt or equity. Moreover (and perhaps because of the lack of any plausible general theory), we lack any persuasive empirical ...


Corruption Of The Class Action: The New Technology Of Collusion, John C. Coffee Jr. Jan 1995

Corruption Of The Class Action: The New Technology Of Collusion, John C. Coffee Jr.

Faculty Scholarship

Professor Coffee's article, an oral version of which was given at the Cornell Mass Torts conference, is appearing in the Columbia Law Review. However, because commentators in this volume have responded to it, he has authorized the following summary of his views.


Formal And Functional Approaches To Separation-Of-Powers Questions – A Foolish Inconsistency?, Peter L. Strauss Jan 1987

Formal And Functional Approaches To Separation-Of-Powers Questions – A Foolish Inconsistency?, Peter L. Strauss

Faculty Scholarship

Is it possible to give contemporary shape to the principles of constitutional structure we know as "separation of powers"? That question was sharply presented once again on the final day of the Supreme Court's most recent Term, when it decided two cases raising separation-of-powers issues. In Bowsher v. Synar, the subject of this symposium, the Court found constitutional fault in Congress's asserted expansion of its own powers at the expense of the President's article II authority. Commodity Future Trading Commission v. Schor, far less widely noted, upheld against constitutional challenge Congress's assignment to an administrative adjudicator ...


Economics Of Public Use, Thomas W. Merrill Jan 1986

Economics Of Public Use, Thomas W. Merrill

Faculty Scholarship

The fifth amendment to the United States Constitution, as well as most state constitutions, provides that private property shall not be taken "for public use" unless just compensation is paid. American courts have long construed this to mean that some showing of "publicness" is a condition precedent to a legitimate exercise of the power of eminent domain. Thus, when a proposed condemnation of property lacks the appropriate public quality, the taking is deemed to be unconstitutional and can be enjoined. In practice, however, most observers today think the public use limitation is a dead letter. Three recent decisions, upholding takings ...


Of "Liberty" And "Property", Henry Paul Monaghan Jan 1977

Of "Liberty" And "Property", Henry Paul Monaghan

Faculty Scholarship

After a century of experience, we are now thoroughly accustomed to viewing the fourteenth amendment as imposing upon the experimentation otherwise permitted in our fifty separate "laboratories" limitations that do not materially differ from those fastened upon the national government by the bill of rights. The history of this evolution is far too well known to justify rehearsing here even in the barest outline. But it bears noting that few, if any, observers believe that the language of the amendment has played a significant role in this historical evolution. Here, as elsewhere, "[b]ehind the words ... are postulates which limit ...


Government By Judiciary: The Transformation Of The Fourteenth Amendment, Gerard E. Lynch Jan 1977

Government By Judiciary: The Transformation Of The Fourteenth Amendment, Gerard E. Lynch

Faculty Scholarship

As its title suggests, Raoul Berger's Government by Judiciary states an extreme version of a familiar thesis: The Supreme Court has abandoned its proper role as interpreter of the Constitution and has usurped the power to act as a third legislative chamber. Like kadis under a tree, the Court creates law from mere personal predilections. The main instrument of this judicial coup has been the fourteenth amendment. Government by Judiciary is an historian's book, strongest when using the historian's tools to illuminate the past. Underlying this research, however, is a remarkably simplistic theory of constitutional interpretation, a ...