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Full-Text Articles in Law

Controlling Externalities: Ownership Structure And Cross-Firm Externalities, Dhammika Dharmapala, Vikramaditya S. Khanna Aug 2021

Controlling Externalities: Ownership Structure And Cross-Firm Externalities, Dhammika Dharmapala, Vikramaditya S. Khanna

Law & Economics Working Papers

In recent years, debates over the social purpose of corporations have taken center stage amidst rising concern about externalities (such as those associated with climate change and harmful speech) generated by firms. A key motivation is the claim that government regulation and liability regimes appear not to be functioning sufficiently well to force firms to internalize these externalities. There is thus rising interest in exploring alternative mechanisms. In particular, a rapidly growing body of scholarship argues that index funds increasingly approximate diversified “universal owners” with incentives to maximize portfolio value (and thus to internalize cross-firm externalities). However, much of this …


In Praise Of (Some) Ex Post Regulation: A Response To Professor Galle, Kyle D. Logue Jan 2016

In Praise Of (Some) Ex Post Regulation: A Response To Professor Galle, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

According to modern law-and-economics (“L&E”) orthodoxy, the primary—maybe even the only—legitimate justification for government regulation is to correct a market failure. This conclusion is based on two key assumptions. First, when markets are functioning reasonably well, they are better at achieving efficiency than the government is. Second, most markets function reasonably well most of the time. Although there is probably evidence to support these assumptions (for example, the relative prosperity of market-based economies in comparison with the relative poverty of centrally planned economies), both assumptions are usually taken as articles of faith by mainstream L&E scholars. This is why scholarly …


Taxing The Platypygous, James J. White Jan 2013

Taxing The Platypygous, James J. White

Articles

This Article maintains that obesity in the United States is an enormous public health issue that causes the health care costs of the obese Americans greatly to exceed those of citizens of normal weight. Recognizing that that much of that cost will be born by publicly financed programs and that the taxes supporting those programs will constitute an externality that the fat impose on the thin, the Article proposes a tax on high calorie food-but only when that food is purchased by the obese. The Article addresses many of the administrative, moral and other objections to a tax aimed at …


The Last Best Hope For Progressivity In Tax, E. J. Mccaffery, James R. Hines Jr. Jan 2010

The Last Best Hope For Progressivity In Tax, E. J. Mccaffery, James R. Hines Jr.

Articles

We argue that a spending tax, as opposed to an income or wage tax, is the “last best hope” for a return to significantly more progressive marginal tax rates than obtain today. The simple explanation for this central claim looks to incentive effects, especially for “rich people,” as both economists and commentators are inclined to focus. High marginal tax rates under an income tax fall on and hence deter the socially productive activities of work and savings. High marginal rates under a wage tax fall on and hence deter the socially productive activity of work alone. But high marginal rates …


The Attack On Nonprofit Status: A Charitable Assessment, James R. Hines Jr., Jill R. Horwitz, Austin Nichols Jan 2010

The Attack On Nonprofit Status: A Charitable Assessment, James R. Hines Jr., Jill R. Horwitz, Austin Nichols

Articles

American nonprofit organizations receive favorable tax treatment, including tax exemptions and tax-deductibility of contributions, in return for their devotion to charitable purposes and restrictions not to distribute profits. Recent efforts to extend some or all of these tax benefits to for-profit companies making social investments, including the creation of the new hybrid nonprofit/for-profit company form known as the Low-Profit Limited Liability Company, threaten to undermine the vitality of the nonprofit sector and the integrity of the tax system. Reform advocates maintain that the ability to compensate executives based on performance and to distribute profits when attractive investment opportunities are scarce …


The Multiple Common Law Roots Of Charitable Immunity: An Essay In Honor Of Richard Epstein's Contributions To Tort Law, Jill R. Horwitz Jan 2010

The Multiple Common Law Roots Of Charitable Immunity: An Essay In Honor Of Richard Epstein's Contributions To Tort Law, Jill R. Horwitz

Articles

Professor Epstein has long promoted replacing tort-based malpractice law with a new regime based on contracts. In Mortal Peril, he grounded his normative arguments in favor of such a shift in the positive, doctrinal history of charitable immunity law. In this essay, in three parts, I critique Professor Epstein’s suggestion that a faulty set of interpretations in charitable immunity law led to our current reliance on tort for malpractice claims. First, I offer an alternative interpretation to Professor Epstein’s claim that one group of 19th and early 20th century cases demonstrates a misguided effort to protect donor wishes. Rather, I …


Boilerplate And Economic Power In Auto Manufacturing Contracts, Omri Ben-Shahar, James J. White Jan 2006

Boilerplate And Economic Power In Auto Manufacturing Contracts, Omri Ben-Shahar, James J. White

Articles

This Article is structured as follows. Part I compares the terms and conditions in the purchase orders of the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and highlights important differences in the substance of these boilerplate provisions. It argues that these differences cannot be easily reconciled with the prediction that sophisticated parties draft the most efficient boilerplate terms. Part II examines how these forms are drafted, how their terms are negotiated, and how the OEMs guard their terms from erosion. It provides some insight on how tailoring occurs and how the internal organization of a party to a deal affects the terms that …


Banking The Poor, Michael S. Barr Jan 2004

Banking The Poor, Michael S. Barr

Articles

Low-income households often lack access to banking accounts and face high costs for transacting basic financial services through check cashers and other alternative financial service providers. These families find it more difficult to save and plan financially for the future. Living paycheck to paycheck leaves them vulnerable to medical or job emergencies that may endanger their financial stability, and lack of longer-term savings undermines their ability to improve skills, purchase a home, or send their children to college. Additionally, high cost financial services and inadequate access to bank accounts may undermine widely shared societal goals of reducing poverty, moving families …


Banking For The Unbanked, Michael S. Barr Jan 2002

Banking For The Unbanked, Michael S. Barr

Articles

The consequences of not having access to mainstream financial services can be severe. Fim, the "unbanked" face high costs for basic financial servies. For example, a 2000 Treasury [U.S. Treasury Department] study found that a worker eaming $12,000 a year would pay approximately $250 annually just to cash payroll checks at a check cashing outlet, in addition to fees for money orders, wire transfers, bill payments, and other common transactions. Regular payments with low credit risk that could be directly deposited into bank accounts, with significantly lower payment systems costs, form the bulk of checks cashed at these check cashing …


"Externalities And Other Parasites." Review Of The Strategic Constitution, By R. D. Cooter, And Constitutional Democracy, By D. C. Mueller, Donald J. Herzog Jan 2000

"Externalities And Other Parasites." Review Of The Strategic Constitution, By R. D. Cooter, And Constitutional Democracy, By D. C. Mueller, Donald J. Herzog

Reviews

I shall argue that despite the occasional and charmingly belligerent pose struck by some economists of offering a superior alternative to conventional moral and political theory, economics is covertly parasitic on that theory. I begin in Part I by describing some of the core features of economic analysis and by disclosing my own sentiments about that analysis. The description will be terse, the disclosure partial. My aim is to identify, but certainly not pretend to resolve, some thorny methodological issues that surface in these two books. As for the disclosure, well, even if full disclosure were possible, which I doubt, …


The Product/Process Distinction - An Illusory Basis For Disciplining 'Unilateralism' In Trade Policy, Robert L. Howse, Donald H. Regan Jan 2000

The Product/Process Distinction - An Illusory Basis For Disciplining 'Unilateralism' In Trade Policy, Robert L. Howse, Donald H. Regan

Articles

It has become conventional wisdom that internal regulations that distinguish between products on the basis of their production method are GATT-illegal, where applied to restrict imports (although possibly some such measures might be justified as 'exceptions' under Article XX). The aim of this article is to challenge this conventional wisdom, both from a jurisprudential and a policy perspective. First, we argue there is no real support in the text and jurisprudence of the GATT for the product/process distinction. The notion developed in the unadopted Tuna/Dolphin cases that processed-based measures are somehow excluded from the coverage of Article III (National Treatment) …


The Costs Of Cigarettes: The Economic Case For Ex Post Incentive-Based Regulation, Jon D. Hanson, Kyle D. Logue Jan 1998

The Costs Of Cigarettes: The Economic Case For Ex Post Incentive-Based Regulation, Jon D. Hanson, Kyle D. Logue

Articles

Cigarette smoking causes over 420,000 deaths annually in the United States, roughly twenty percent of all U.S. deaths, making cigarettes the single greatest preventable cause of death in this country. Indeed, tobacco kills more people every year than alcohol, illicit drugs, automobile accidents, violent crime, and AIDS combined. And not only are cigarettes deadly to smokers; they kill nonsmokers as well. According to a recent report from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the "sidestream" or "passive" smoke from cigarettes - so-called environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) - is responsible annually for approximately 3000 lung cancer deaths, between 150,000 and 300,000 lower …


The Tragedy Of The Commons, Part Two, James E. Krier Jan 1992

The Tragedy Of The Commons, Part Two, James E. Krier

Articles

This symposium is about the idea of "free market environmentalism" in general and the book Free Market Environmentalism, by Terry Anderson and Donald Leal,1 in particular. While I focus chiefly on Anderson and Leal's book, the discussion will necessarily involve the general idea of free market environmentalism as well. The conceit of my tide, which obviously derives from Garrett Hardin's celebrated essay on The Tragedy of the Commons,2 is this: Superficial differences aside, Hardin's essay and Anderson and Leal's book address the same fundamental problem of coordinating human behavior as it affects environmental quality. But both the essay and the …


Risk And Design, James E. Krier Jan 1990

Risk And Design, James E. Krier

Articles

Risk springs from uncertainty,' uncertainty invites error, and, since error can be costly, we would prefer to avoid it (provided, of course, that avoidance is not more costly yet). While there is much in the Noll and Krier article2 about judgmental error under conditions of risk and uncertainty, there is little about ways to avoid it. So avoidance-more accurately, minimization-of error costs is the topic I want to address very briefly and partially here.


The Problem Of Social Cost Revisited, Donald H. Regan Jan 1972

The Problem Of Social Cost Revisited, Donald H. Regan

Articles

SOME years ago, in a paper entitled "The Problem of Social Cost," Professor Ronald Coase asserted and argued for a proposition which has since acquired the convenient sobriquet "the Coase Theorem." The proposition is: That in a world of perfect competition, perfect information, and zero transaction costs, the allocation of resources in the economy will be efficient and will be unaffected by legal rules regarding the initial impact of costs resulting from externalities. Note that there are two claims being made, which it is well to separate for purposes of discussion. The first claim is that, under the conditions described, …