Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Law Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 17 of 17

Full-Text Articles in Law

Home Rule And Local Political Innovation, Richard Briffault Jan 2006

Home Rule And Local Political Innovation, Richard Briffault

Faculty Scholarship

As demonstrated by San Francisco's recent adoption of instant runoff voting and New York City's recent expansion of its program for funding candidates for municipal office, local governments around the country have been actively engaged in examining and revising electoral and governmental processes. These local initiatives include alternative voting systems, campaign finance reforms, conflicts of interest codes, term limits, and revisions to tax, budget and legislative procedures. These local innovations illustrate both the capacity of local governments to restructure basic features of their political organization and their interest in doing so. Local political innovations also test the scope of local …


The Supreme Court, The Solicitor General, And Bankruptcy: Bfp V. Resolution Trust Corporation, Ronald J. Mann Jan 2006

The Supreme Court, The Solicitor General, And Bankruptcy: Bfp V. Resolution Trust Corporation, Ronald J. Mann

Faculty Scholarship

This chapter tells the story behind BFP v. Resolution Trust Corporation. I see BFP as a case that pitted relatively plain statutory language supporting the debtor-in-possession against policy interests supporting a secured creditor. I argue that an important explanation for the Supreme Court's decision to favor policy over the language of the statute was its perception of a need to protect the availability of non-bankruptcy remedies for secured creditors. Accordingly, I situate my discussion of BFP in the context of the role that the federal government has played in the Supreme Court's cases interpreting the Bankruptcy Code. In general, I …


Social Contagion Of Violence, Jeffrey Fagan, Deanna L. Wilkinson, Garth Davies Jan 2006

Social Contagion Of Violence, Jeffrey Fagan, Deanna L. Wilkinson, Garth Davies

Faculty Scholarship

Since 1968, violence and other crimes in New York City have followed a pattern of recurring epidemics. There have been three consecutive and contiguous cycles characterized by sharp increases in homicides and assaults to an elevated rate followed by equally steep declines to levels near the previous starting point. The most recent epidemic, from 1985-96, had the sharpest rise and steepest decline of the three epidemics. Popular explanations of the current epidemic fail to account for both the rise and fall of the decline, or for the repetitive pattern of these epidemics. In this article, we use public health data …


Optimal Liability For Terrorism, Darius N. Lakdawalla, Eric L. Talley Jan 2006

Optimal Liability For Terrorism, Darius N. Lakdawalla, Eric L. Talley

Faculty Scholarship

This paper analyzes the normative role for civil liability in aligning terrorism precaution incentives, when the perpetrators of terrorism are unreachable by courts or regulators. We consider the strategic interaction among targets, subsidiary victims, and terrorists within a sequential, game-theoretic model. The model reveals that, while an "optimal" liability regime indeed exists, its features appear at odds with conventional legal templates. For example, it frequently prescribes damages payments from seemingly unlikely defendants, directing them to seemingly unlikely plaintiffs. The challenge of introducing such a regime using existing tort law doctrines, therefore, is likely to be prohibitive. Instead, we argue, efficient …


Learning To Learn: Undoing The Gordian Knot Of Development Today, Charles F. Sabel, Sanjay G. Reddy Jan 2006

Learning To Learn: Undoing The Gordian Knot Of Development Today, Charles F. Sabel, Sanjay G. Reddy

Faculty Scholarship

The deep flaw of existing approaches to development is their dirigisme: the assumption, common to nearly all development theory, that there is an expert agent that already sees the future. A common thread connects the emergent alternatives to development orthodoxy: the enhancement of the conditions of individual and collective learning. This approach to development highlights the existence of unresolved problems and the necessity of problem solving in every sphere. The enhancement of the conditions of learning can be the key to improving performance, resolving deadlocks, and overcoming blockages, at every level at which common dilemmas and collective problem solving occur …


Embracing Chance: Post-Modern Meditations On Punishment, Bernard E. Harcourt Jan 2006

Embracing Chance: Post-Modern Meditations On Punishment, Bernard E. Harcourt

Faculty Scholarship

Since the modern era, the discourse of punishment has cycled through three sets of questions. The first, born of the Enlightenment itself, asked: On what ground does the sovereign have the right to punish? Nietzsche most forcefully, but others as well, argued that the question itself begged its own answer. The right to punish, they suggested, is what defines sovereignty, and as such, can never serve to limit sovereign power. With the birth of the social sciences, this skepticism gave rise to a second set of questions: What then is the true function of punishment? What is it that we …


'Une Chose Publique'? The Author's Domain And The Public Domain In Early British, French And Us Copyright Law, Jane C. Ginsburg Jan 2006

'Une Chose Publique'? The Author's Domain And The Public Domain In Early British, French And Us Copyright Law, Jane C. Ginsburg

Faculty Scholarship

Much contemporary copyright rhetoric casts copyright as a derogation from a primordial public domain. Placing the public domain in the initial position buttresses attempts to contain a perceived over-expansion of copyright. I do not take issue with the normative role these endeavors assign to the public domain. The public domain is today and should remain copyright's constraining counterpart. But normative arguments that also claim the support of history may be fundamentally anachronistic. The ensuing examination of the respective domains of author and public at copyright's inception, in 18th-19th century Britain, France and America, reveals more ambiguity than today's critiques generally …


Inducers And Authorisers: A Comparison Of The Us Supreme Court's Grokster Decision And The Australian Federal Court's Kazaa Ruling, Jane C. Ginsburg, Sam Ricketson Jan 2006

Inducers And Authorisers: A Comparison Of The Us Supreme Court's Grokster Decision And The Australian Federal Court's Kazaa Ruling, Jane C. Ginsburg, Sam Ricketson

Faculty Scholarship

On June 27, 2005, the US Supreme Court announced its much-awaited decision in MGM Studios, Inc. v. Grokster Ltd. A few months after this, the Federal Court of Australia handed down its decision at first instance in relation to parallel litigation in that country concerning the KaZaa file sharing system. Both decisions repay careful consideration of the way in which the respective courts have addressed the relationship between the protection of authors' rights and the advent of new technologies, particularly in relation to peer-to-peer networks.

In the Grokster case, songwriters, record producers and motion picture producers alleged that two popular …


Muslim Profiles Post-9/11: Is Racial Profiling An Effective Counterterrorist Measure And Does It Violate The Right To Be Free From Discrimination?, Bernard E. Harcourt Jan 2006

Muslim Profiles Post-9/11: Is Racial Profiling An Effective Counterterrorist Measure And Does It Violate The Right To Be Free From Discrimination?, Bernard E. Harcourt

Faculty Scholarship

Racial profiling as a defensive counterterrorism measure necessarily implicates a rights trade-off: if effective, racial profiling limits the right of young Muslim men to be free from discrimination in order to promote the security and well-being of others. Proponents of racial profiling argue that it is based on simple statistical fact and represents just smart law enforcement. Opponents of racial profiling, like New York City police commissioner Raymond Kelly, say that it is dangerous and just nuts.

As a theoretical matter, both sides are partly right. Racial profiling in the context of counterterrorism measures may increase the detection of terrorist …


Patents And Business Models For Software Firms, John R. Allison, Abe Dunn, Ronald J. Mann Jan 2006

Patents And Business Models For Software Firms, John R. Allison, Abe Dunn, Ronald J. Mann

Faculty Scholarship

We analyze the relation between patents and the different business models available to firms in the software industry. The paper builds on Cusumano's work defining the differences among firms that sell products, those that provide services, and the hybrid firms that fall between those polar categories. Combining data from five years of Software Magazine's Software 500 with data about the patenting practices of those software firms, we analyze the relation between the share of revenues derived from product sales and the firm's patenting practices. Accounting for size, R&D intensity, and sector-specific effects, the paper finds a robust positive correlation between …


Network Neutrality: Competition, Innovation, And Nondiscriminatory Access, Tim Wu Jan 2006

Network Neutrality: Competition, Innovation, And Nondiscriminatory Access, Tim Wu

Faculty Scholarship

The best proposals for network neutrality rules are simple. They ban abusive behavior like tollboothing and outright blocking and degradation. And they leave open legitimate network services that the Bells and Cable operators want to provide, such as offering cable television services and voice services along with a neutral internet offering. They are in line with a tradition of protecting consumer's rights on networks whose instinct is just this: let customers use the network as they please. No one wants to deny companies the right to charge for their services and charge consumers more if they use more. But what …


Adding Adequacy To Equity: The Evolving Legal Theory Of School Finance Reform, Richard Briffault Jan 2006

Adding Adequacy To Equity: The Evolving Legal Theory Of School Finance Reform, Richard Briffault

Faculty Scholarship

The law of school finance reform is conventionally described as consisting of three waves, each associated with a distinctive legal theory – a first wave based on federal equal protection arguments, a second equity wave based on state equal protection clauses, and a third adequacy wave based on state constitutional education articles. The asserted shift from equity to adequacy has been credited with the increasing success of school finance reform plaintiffs.

The wave metaphor and especially the differences between the second and third waves, however, have been sharply overstated – temporally, textually, in terms of litigation success, and as a …


Credit Cards, Consumer Credit, And Bankruptcy, Ronald J. Mann Jan 2006

Credit Cards, Consumer Credit, And Bankruptcy, Ronald J. Mann

Faculty Scholarship

This paper analyzes the effects of credit card use on broader economic indicators, specifically consumer credit, and consumer bankruptcy filings. Using aggregate nation-level data from Australia, Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States, I find that credit card spending, lagged by 1-2 years, has a strong positive effect on consumer credit. Finally, I find a strong relation between credit card debt, lagged by 1-2 years, and bankruptcy, and a weaker relation between consumer credit, lagged by 1-2 years, and bankruptcy. The relations are robust across a variety of different lags and models that account for problems of multicollinearity …


Rational Choice And Developmental Influences On Recidivism Among Adolescent Felony Offenders, Jeffrey Fagan, Alex R. Piquero Jan 2006

Rational Choice And Developmental Influences On Recidivism Among Adolescent Felony Offenders, Jeffrey Fagan, Alex R. Piquero

Faculty Scholarship

Recent law and scholarship has claimed that the developmental limitations of adolescents affect their capacity for control and decision making with respect to crime, diminishing their culpability and reducing their exposure to punishment. Social science has focused on two concurrent adolescent developmental influence: the internalization of legal rules and norms that regulate social and antisocial behaviors, and the development of rational thought to frame behavioral choices and decisions. The interaction of these two developmental processes, and the identification of one domain of socialization and development as the primary source of motivation or restraint in adolescence, is the focus of this …


Assessing The Ssrn-Based Law School Rankings, Theodore Eisenberg Jan 2006

Assessing The Ssrn-Based Law School Rankings, Theodore Eisenberg

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

One noteworthy feature of the SSRN-based rankings is the high correlation between them and other rankings. Black and Caron report correlation coefficients between their two Social Science Research Network (SSRN) school rankings (one based on downloads from SSRN and one based on the number of papers posted on SSRN) and six other published rankings. The correlations provide a useful and creative measure of consistency across studies. If ranking studies are highly correlated, then the least expensive and most efficient study to conduct can be used without incurring the expense and delay of the more labor-intensive ranking methods. SSRN has a …


The Law And Economics Of Contracts, Benjamin E. Hermalin, Avery W. Katz, Richard Craswell Jan 2006

The Law And Economics Of Contracts, Benjamin E. Hermalin, Avery W. Katz, Richard Craswell

Faculty Scholarship

This paper, which will appear as a chapter in the forthcoming Handbook of Law and Economics (A.M. Polinsky & S. Shavell, eds.), surveys major issues arising in the economic analysis of contract law. It begins with an introductory discussion of scope and methodology, and then addresses four topic areas that correspond to the major doctrinal divisions of the law of contracts. These areas include freedom of contract (i.e., the scope of private power to create binding obligations), formation of contracts (both the procedural mechanics of exchange, and rules that govern pre-contractual behavior), contract interpretation (what consequences follow when agreements are …


Public Attitudes About The Culpability And Punishment Of Young Offenders, Elizabeth S. Scott, N. Dickon Reppucci, Jill Antonishak, Jennifer T. Degennaro Jan 2006

Public Attitudes About The Culpability And Punishment Of Young Offenders, Elizabeth S. Scott, N. Dickon Reppucci, Jill Antonishak, Jennifer T. Degennaro

Faculty Scholarship

Conventional wisdom holds that the public supports harsh punishment of juvenile offenders, and politicians often argue that the public demands tough policies. But public opinion is usually gauged through simplistic polls, often conducted in the wake of highly publicized violent crimes by juveniles. This study seeks to probe public opinion about the culpability of young offenders as compared to adult counterparts through more nuanced and comprehensive measures in a neutral setting (i.e. not in response to a high profile crime or during a political campaign when the media focuses on the issue). The opinions of 788 community adults were individually …