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How The Black Lives Matter Movement Can Improve The Justice System, Paul H. Robinson Dec 2015

How The Black Lives Matter Movement Can Improve The Justice System, Paul H. Robinson

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This op-ed piece argues that because the criminal justice system's loss of moral credibility contributes to increased criminality and because blacks are disproportionately the victims of crimes, especially violent crimes, the most valuable contribution that the Black Lives Matter movement can make is not to tear down the system’s reputation but rather to propose and support reforms that will build it up, thereby improving its crime-control effectiveness and reducing black victimization.


Marriage (In)Equality And The Historical Legacies Of Feminism, Serena Mayeri Nov 2015

Marriage (In)Equality And The Historical Legacies Of Feminism, Serena Mayeri

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In this essay, I measure the majority’s opinion in Obergefell v. Hodges against two legacies of second-wave feminist legal advocacy: the largely successful campaign to make civil marriage formally gender-neutral; and the lesser-known struggle against laws and practices that penalized women who lived their lives outside of marriage. Obergefell obliquely acknowledges marriage equality’s debt to the first legacy without explicitly adopting sex equality arguments against same-sex marriage bans. The legacy of feminist campaigns for nonmarital equality, by contrast, is absent from Obergefell’s reasoning and belied by rhetoric that both glorifies marriage and implicitly disparages nonmarriage. Even so, the history …


Obama's Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free Decree, Paul H. Robinson Jul 2015

Obama's Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free Decree, Paul H. Robinson

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While agreeing that sentences for nonviolent drug offenses are too long, this Wall Street Journal op-ed piece argues that the large-scale clemency program planned by President Obama is misguided. It sets a dangerous precedent for using the clemency power beyond its traditional and intended purpose of providing a last-resort check on fairness and justice errors in individual cases, and instead uses the power to set sentencing policy. While many people will like the results of the current program, they will be less than happy when some future president uses it as precedent to promote a sentencing policy of which they …


Human Rights Treaties In And Beyond The Senate: The Spirit Of Senator Proxmire, Jean Galbraith Jun 2015

Human Rights Treaties In And Beyond The Senate: The Spirit Of Senator Proxmire, Jean Galbraith

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In 1995, Louis Henkin wrote a famous piece in which he suggested that the process of human rights treaty ratification was haunted by “the ghost of Senator Bricker” – the isolationist Senator who in the 1950s had waged a fierce assault on the treaty power, especially with regard to human rights treaties. Since that time, Senator Bricker’s ghost has proved even more real. Professor Henkin’s concern was with how the United States ratified human rights treaties, and specifically with the packet of reservations, declarations, and understandings (RUDs) attached by the Senate in giving its advice and consent. Today, the question …


Governing Disasters: The Challenge Of Global Disaster Law And Policy, Eric A. Feldman, Chelsea Fish Jun 2015

Governing Disasters: The Challenge Of Global Disaster Law And Policy, Eric A. Feldman, Chelsea Fish

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This chapter uses the analytical framework of transnational legal ordering (TLO) developed by Halliday and Shaffer and applies it to the area of law and disasters. In contrast to the increasingly transnational legal nature of social ordering highlighted by Halliday and Shaffer, it argues that the emergence of transnational regulatory networks and cross-border principles or policies in the area of disaster management has been uneven and incomplete. Although there are many factors that help to explain why the law/disasters area has resisted the trend toward “transnationalization,” two stand out. One is the relative dearth of national laws and policies governing …


Rediscovering Capture: Antitrust Federalism And The North Carolina Dental Case, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Apr 2015

Rediscovering Capture: Antitrust Federalism And The North Carolina Dental Case, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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This brief essay analyzes the Supreme Court's 2015 decision in the North Carolina Dental case, assessing its implications for federalism. The decision promises to re-open old divisions that had once made the antitrust "state action" doctrine a controversial lightning rod for debate about state economic sovereignty.

One provocative issue that neither the majority nor the dissenters considered is indicated by the fact that nearly all the cartel customers in the Dental case were located within the state. By contrast, the cartel in Parker v. Brown, which the dissent held up as the correct exemplar of the doctrine, benefited California growers …


The Actavis Inference: Theory And Practice, Aaron S. Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro Apr 2015

The Actavis Inference: Theory And Practice, Aaron S. Edlin, C. Scott Hemphill, Herbert J. Hovenkamp, Carl Shapiro

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In FTC v. Actavis, Inc., the Supreme Court considered "reverse payment" settlements of patent infringement litigation. In such a settlement, a patentee pays the alleged infringer to settle, and the alleged infringer agrees not to enter the market for a period of time. The Court held that a reverse payment settlement violates antitrust law if the patentee is paying to avoid competition. The core insight of Actavis is the Actavis Inference: a large and otherwise unexplained payment, combined with delayed entry, supports a reasonable inference of harm to consumers from lessened competition.

This paper is an effort to assist courts …


Antitrust And The Patent System: A Reexamination, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2015

Antitrust And The Patent System: A Reexamination, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Since the federal antitrust laws were first passed they have cycled through extreme positions on the relationship between competition law and the patent system. Previous studies of antitrust and patents have generally assumed that patents are valid, discrete, and generally of high quality in the sense that they further innovation. As a result, increasing the returns to patenting increases the incentive to do socially valuable innovation. Further, if the returns to the patentee exceed the social losses caused by increased exclusion, the tradeoff is positive and antitrust should not interfere. If a patent does nothing to further innovation, however, then …


Compensating The Victims Of Japan’S 3-11 Fukushima Disaster, Eric A. Feldman Jan 2015

Compensating The Victims Of Japan’S 3-11 Fukushima Disaster, Eric A. Feldman

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Japan’s March 2011 triple disaster—first a large earthquake, followed by a massive tsunami and a nuclear meltdown—caused a devastating loss of life, damaged and destroyed property, and left hundreds of thousands of people homeless, hurt, and in need. This article looks at the effort to address the financial needs of the victims of the 3/11 disaster by examining the role of public and private actors in providing compensation, describing the types of groups and individuals for whom compensation is available, and analyzing the range of institutions through which compensation has been allocated. The story is in some ways cause for …


Justice: 1850s San Francisco And The California Gold Rush, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson Jan 2015

Justice: 1850s San Francisco And The California Gold Rush, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson

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Using stories from the 1848-1851 California gold miners, the 1851 San Francisco vigilante committees, Nazi concentration camps of the 1940s, and wagon trains of American westward migration in the 1840s, the chapter illustrates that it is part of human nature to see doing justice as a value in itself—in people’s minds it is not dependent for justification on the practical benefits it brings. Having justice done is sufficiently important to people that they willingly suffer enormous costs to obtain it, even when they were neither hurt by the wrong nor in a position to benefit from punishing the wrongdoer.

This …


Proportionality And The Social Benefits Of Discovery: Out Of Sight And Out Of Mind?, Stephen B. Burbank Jan 2015

Proportionality And The Social Benefits Of Discovery: Out Of Sight And Out Of Mind?, Stephen B. Burbank

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In this short essay, based on remarks delivered at the 2015 meeting of the AALS Section of Litigation, I use a recent paper by Gelbach and Kobayashi to highlight the risk that, in assessing the proportionality of proposed discovery under the 2015 amendments to Rule 26 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, federal judges will privilege costs over benefits, and private over public interests. The risk arises from the temptation to focus on (1) the interests of those who are present to the detriment of the interests of those who are absent (“the availability heuristic”), and (2) variables that …


Intuitive Formalism In Contract, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan Jan 2015

Intuitive Formalism In Contract, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan

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This Article starts with the proposition that most American contracting is consumer contracting, posits that consumer contracting has particular and even peculiar doctrinal features, and concludes that these features dominate the lay understanding of contract law. Contracts of adhesion constitute the bulk of consumer experience with contract law. It is not hard to see that someone discerning the nature of contract law from a sample composed almost entirely of boilerplate terms and conditions would come quickly to the conclusion that contract law is highly formal.

Within the realm of potentially enforceable deals (i.e., those that are supported by consideration and …


The Ironies Of Affirmative Action, Kermit Roosevelt Iii Jan 2015

The Ironies Of Affirmative Action, Kermit Roosevelt Iii

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The Supreme Court’s most recent confrontation with race-based affirmative action, Fisher v. University of Texas, did not live up to people’s expectations—or their fears. The Court did not explicitly change the current approach in any substantial way. It did, however, signal that it wants race-based affirmative action to be subject to real strict scrutiny, not the watered-down version featured in Grutter v. Bollinger. That is a significant signal, because under real strict scrutiny, almost all race-based affirmative action programs are likely unconstitutional. This is especially true given the conceptual framework the Court has created for such programs—the way …


Neuroprediction: New Technology, Old Problems, Stephen J. Morse Jan 2015

Neuroprediction: New Technology, Old Problems, Stephen J. Morse

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Neuroprediction is the use of structural or functional brain or nervous system variables to make any type of prediction, including medical prognoses and behavioral forecasts, such as an indicator of future dangerous behavior. This commentary will focus on behavioral predictions, but the analysis applies to any context. The general thesis is that using neurovariables for prediction is a new technology, but that it raises no new ethical issues, at least for now. Only if neuroscience achieves the ability to “read” mental content will genuinely new ethical issues be raised, but that is not possible at present.


Inventing The Classical Constitution, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2015

Inventing The Classical Constitution, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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One recurring call over a century of American constitutional thought is for return to a "classical" understanding of American federal and state Constitutions. "Classical" does not necessarily mean "originalist" or "interpretivist." Some classical views, such as the attempt to revitalize Lochner-style economic due process, find little support in the text of the federal Constitution or any of the contemporary state constitutions. Rather, constitutional meaning is thought to lie in a background link between constitution formation and classical statecraft. The core theory rests on the assumption of a social contract to which everyone in some initial position agreed. Like any contract, …


Fractured Markets And Legal Institutions, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2015

Fractured Markets And Legal Institutions, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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This article considers how we can improve legal outcomes of conflicts that occur in very small arenas. The conflicts can be of many kinds, including a nuisance dispute between neighbors, an impending collision between two moving vehicles, a joint decision between spouses about whether or on what terms to continue their marriage, or a disagreement between managers and shareholders within a firm.

The prevailing literature typically refers to these small environments as “markets.” Thinking of them as markets, however, averts our attention from larger environments that should be considered but that often do not function well as private markets. For …


From Chrysler And General Motors To Detroit, David A. Skeel Jr. Jan 2015

From Chrysler And General Motors To Detroit, David A. Skeel Jr.

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In the past five years, three of the most remarkable bankruptcy cases in American history have come out of Detroit: the bankruptcies of Chrysler and General Motors in 2009, and of Detroit itself in 2012. The principal objective of this Article is simply to show that the Grand Bargain at the heart of the Detroit bankruptcy is the direct offspring of the bankruptcy sale transactions that were used to restructure Chrysler and GM. The proponents of Detroit’s “Grand Bargain” never would have dreamed up the transaction were it not for the federal government-engineered carmaker bankruptcies. The Article’s second objective, based …


The Rise And Fall And Resurrection Of American Criminal Codes, Paul H. Robinson Jan 2015

The Rise And Fall And Resurrection Of American Criminal Codes, Paul H. Robinson

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This brief essay summarizes the virtues of the modern American codification movement of the 1960s and 70s, putting it in a larger global context, then describes how these once-enviable codes have been systematically degraded with thoughtless amendments, a process of degradation that is accelerating each year. After exploring the political dynamics that promote such degradation, the essay suggests the principles and procedures for fixing the current codes and, more importantly, structural changes to the process that could avoid the restart of degradation in the future.


Of Weevils And Witches: What Can We Learn From The Ghost Of Responsibility Past, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan Jan 2015

Of Weevils And Witches: What Can We Learn From The Ghost Of Responsibility Past, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan

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No abstract provided.


Discounting And Criminals' Implied Risk Preferences, Murat C. Mungan, Jonathan Klick Jan 2015

Discounting And Criminals' Implied Risk Preferences, Murat C. Mungan, Jonathan Klick

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It is commonly assumed that potential offenders are more responsive to increases in the certainty than increases in the severity of punishment. An important implication of this assumption within the Beckerian law enforcement model is that criminals are risk-seeking. This note adds to existing literature by showing that offenders who discount future monetary benefits can be more responsive to the certainty rather than the severity of punishment, even when they are risk averse, and even when their disutility from imprisonment rises proportionally (or more than proportionally) with the length of the sentence.


Collateral Consequences And The Preventive State, Sandra G. Mayson Jan 2015

Collateral Consequences And The Preventive State, Sandra G. Mayson

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Approximately eight percent of adults in the United States have a felony conviction. The “collateral consequences” of criminal conviction (CCs) — legal disabilities imposed by legislatures on the basis of conviction, but not as part of the sentence — have relegated that group to permanent second class legal status. Despite the breadth and significance of this demotion, the Constitution has provided no check; courts have almost uniformly rejected constitutional challenges to CCs. Among scholars, practitioners and mainstream media, a consensus has emerged that the courts have erred by failing to recognize CCs as a form of additional punishment. Courts should …


Politics By Number: Indicators As Social Pressure In International Relations, Judith Kelley, Beth A. Simmons Jan 2015

Politics By Number: Indicators As Social Pressure In International Relations, Judith Kelley, Beth A. Simmons

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The ability to monitor state behavior has become a critical tool of international governance. Systematic monitoring allows for the creation of numerical indicators that can be used to rank, compare and essentially censure states. This article argues that the ability to disseminate such numerical indicators widely and instantly constitutes an exercise of social power, with the potential to change important policy outputs. It explores this argument in the context of the United States’ efforts to combat trafficking in persons and find evidence that monitoring has important effects: countries are more likely to criminalize human trafficking when they are included in …


Making "Friends" With The #Ethics Rules: Avoiding Pitfalls In Professional Social Media Use, Cynthia Laury Dahl Jan 2015

Making "Friends" With The #Ethics Rules: Avoiding Pitfalls In Professional Social Media Use, Cynthia Laury Dahl

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Lawyers’ professional use of social media is widespread and a critical component to running a successful practice. Yet some common uses of social media easily – and often innocently -- violate the professional rules of ethics. The American Bar Association recently passed amendments to the Model Rules of Professional Conduct to include topics related to social media use, but the amendments still do not address all issues. Likewise, advisory opinions of state and local bar associations and court opinions give scant and sometimes contradictory advice about when a use does or does not violate a Rule. This essay discusses four …


Intersectionality And Title Vii: A Brief (Pre-)History, Serena Mayeri Jan 2015

Intersectionality And Title Vii: A Brief (Pre-)History, Serena Mayeri

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Title VII was twenty-five years old when Kimberlé Crenshaw published her path-breaking article introducing “intersectionality” to critical legal scholarship. By the time the Civil Rights Act of 1964 reached its thirtieth birthday, the intersectionality critique had come of age, generating a sophisticated subfield and producing many articles that remain classics in the field of anti-discrimination law and beyond. Employment discrimination law was not the only target of intersectionality critics, but Title VII’s failure to capture and ameliorate the particular experiences of women of color loomed large in this early legal literature. Courts proved especially reluctant to recognize multi-dimensional discrimination against …


Progressive Legal Thought, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2015

Progressive Legal Thought, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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A widely accepted model of American legal history is that "classical" legal thought, which dominated much of the nineteenth century, was displaced by "progressive" legal thought, which survived through the New Deal and in some form to this day. Within its domain, this was a revolution nearly on a par with Copernicus or Newton. This paradigm has been adopted by both progressive liberals who defend this revolution and by classical liberals who lament it.

Classical legal thought is generally identified with efforts to systematize legal rules along lines that had become familiar in the natural sciences. This methodology involved not …


The Functions Of Family Law, Serena Mayeri Jan 2015

The Functions Of Family Law, Serena Mayeri

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Melissa Murray's Family Law's Doctrines provides a fascinating case study of legal parentage cases involving assisted reproductive technology, where judges applied relatively new laws to even newer circumstances never contemplated by the laws' drafters. The Uniform Parentage Act (UPA) was a modernizing statute intended to resolve legal questions generated by new societal developments: namely, the rise of nonmarital heterosexual relationships producing children, and the use of artificial insemination within heterosexual marital relationships.

In the decades after its adoption in California, the UPA confronted a brave new world. Two developments further transformed the reality of family life: assisted reproductive technologies such …


Brulotte'S Web, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2015

Brulotte'S Web, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

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Kimble v. Marvel Entertainment held that stare decisis required the Supreme Court to adhere to the half century old, much criticized rule in Brulotte v. Thys. Justice Douglas' Brulotte opinion concluded that license agreements requiring royalties measured by use of a patent after its expiration are unenforceable per se. The court need not inquire into market power nor anticompetitive effects, effects on innovation, and it may not accept any defense. Congress can change the rule if it wants to, but has resisted many invitations to do so.

Under Brulotte a hybrid license on patents and trade secrets requires a royalty …


Empowering Employees To Prevent Fraud In Nonprofit Organizations, John M. Bradley Jan 2015

Empowering Employees To Prevent Fraud In Nonprofit Organizations, John M. Bradley

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This Article examines the significant problem of fraud within nonprofit organizations and demonstrates that current anti-fraud measures do not adequately reflect the important role employees play in perpetuating or stopping fraudulent activity. Psychological and organizational behavior studies have established the importance of (1) participation and (2) peers in shaping the behavior of individuals within the organizational context. This Article builds on that research and establishes that to successfully combat fraud, organizations must integrate employees into the design, implementation, and enforcement of anti-fraud strategy and procedures. Engaged, empowered employees will be less likely to commit fraud and more likely to dissuade …


The Common Sense Of Contract Formation, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan, David A. Hoffman Jan 2015

The Common Sense Of Contract Formation, Tess Wilkinson-Ryan, David A. Hoffman

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What parties know and think they know about contract law affects their obligations under the law and their intuitive obligations toward one another. Drawing on a series of new experimental questionnaire studies, this Article makes two contributions.First, it lays out what information and beliefs ordinary individuals have about how to form contracts with one another. We find that the colloquial understanding of contract law is almost entirely focused on formalization rather than actual assent, though the modern doctrine of contract formation takes the opposite stance. The second Part of the Article tries to get at whether this misunderstanding matters. Is …


The American Criminal Code: General Defenses, Paul H. Robinson, Matthew Kussmaul, Camber Stoddard, Ilya Rudyak, Andreas Kuersten Jan 2015

The American Criminal Code: General Defenses, Paul H. Robinson, Matthew Kussmaul, Camber Stoddard, Ilya Rudyak, Andreas Kuersten

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There are fifty-two bodies of criminal law in the United States. Each stakes out often diverse positions on a range of issues. This article defines the “American rule” for each of the issues relating to general defenses, a first contribution towards creating an “American Criminal Code.”

The article is the result of a several-year research project examining every issue relating to justification, excuse, and non-exculpatory defenses. It determines the majority American position among the fifty-two jurisdictions, and formulates statutory language for each defense that reflects that majority rule. The article also compares and contrasts the majority position to significant minority …