The Harvard Journal of Law & Gender is seeking to fill its Spring volume with one or two more pieces. To that end, we want to encourage people who have pieces ready, or nearly ready, to submit as soon as possible for our review. We are especially interested in receiving pieces that take an intersectional approach to law and gender, broadly construed. http://harvardjlg.com/getting-involved-2/submissions/
The University of Akron School of Law anticipates hiring a 12-month clinical faculty member (presumptively renewable, non-tenure track) to begin in Fall 2016.
The new clinical faculty member will join two other full-time clinical faculty, and will add to a rich array of existing programs which include: Civil Litigation Clinic (cases referred from Community Legal Aid, primarily landlord-tenant), Jail Inmate Assistance Legal Clinic, our award-winning Re-entry Clinics (Expungement, Clemency, Certificate of Qualification for Employment (CQE), and Human Trafficking), SEED Legal Clinic (providing services for small businesses and 2015 Legal Services Champion Award winner from the U.S. Small Business Administration) and Trademark Clinic. We anticipate that a new clinician will be able to establish one or more new clinical offerings according to his or her substantive interests to complement the Law School’s strategic goals and the particular needs of the community. Areas of particular interest include International Human Rights, Immigration, Family Law, and Health Law.
The committee is interested in candidates with a commitment to excellence in clinical teaching, community engagement, and parallel scholarly research.
The University of Akron School of Law is a public, mid-size law school of approximately 450 students located in the Akron/Cleveland metropolitan area. Akron Law offers excellent teaching, relatively low tuition and a commitment to student success, as well as a strong relationship with the local and regional bar. Akron Law prides itself on outcomes including our high bar passage rate (first in Ohio for the Feb 2015 exam), award-winning clinical programs, national championship trial team program and various areas of excellence.
Required Qualifications: Requires a J.D. degree and a license to practice law, as well as professional practice experience.
Preferred Qualifications: A demonstrated record of or potential for effective clinical teaching and successful scholarship.
For complete details and to apply for this position, visit: http://www.uakron.edu/jobs. Job ID# 9221. While all candidates are required to submit their applications via this centralized system, please feel free to direct any inquiries to Professor Sarah Cravens, Chair of the search committee, at email@example.com. Review of applications will begin immediately. Anticipated start date: July 1, 2016. The University of Akron is committed to a policy of equal employment opportunity and to the principles of affirmative action in accordance with state and federal laws.
The University of New Hampshire Law Review is opening an exclusive submission window for articles until November 20, 2015. All papers submitted during this window will be reviewed for publication in our Spring 2016 journal. Authors will be provided a response by December 1, 2015. By submitting your article during this window, you agree to accept a publication offer if one is extended. Articles on all topics are welcome.
Please forward submissions and a C.V. via email to firstname.lastname@example.org, using as the subject line: Exclusive Submission Window: [Article Title].
LSAC has now posted the October 2015 administrations on their website. They are, in fact, up 7.4%, as Aaron Taylor said.
The Law School Admission Council has reported that 33,229 LSATs were administered in October, an increase of 7.4% over the corresponding testing last fall. This is the fourth consecutive administration of the LSAT with an increase in test-takers over corresponding administrations in the previous year.
The three previous administrations had smaller percentage increases, including the small 0.8% increase in December 2014 and increases of 4.4% and 6.6% in February and June, respectively, of this year.
From an email message which I received earlier today:
Jaharis Faculty Fellow in Health Law and Intellectual Property
A new endowment at the DePaul University College of Law will expand and strengthen scholarly and educational programs in an area where two dynamic legal fields are increasingly intersecting — intellectual property and health law. The Jaharis endowment funds a faculty fellowship program for scholars to create and disseminate scholarship and develop curricula at the intersection of these areas. The Fellowship is designed to encourage scholars interested in entering a career in legal academia. The DePaul University College of Law is now accepting applications for the position of Jaharis Faculty Fellow for the academic year 2016-17.
DePaul’s intellectual property and health law programs are nationally ranked by U.S. News & World Report. The Jaharis Faculty Fellow will work with the Center for Intellectual Property Law & Information Technology (CIPLIT®) and the Mary & Michael Jaharis Health Law Institute (JHLI) to support their endeavors.
The Fellow will be expected to:
• Develop and teach new curricular offerings at the intersection of health & IP;
• Write and present scholarly work in health & IP;
• Supervise and advise LLM and MJ students in these areas;
• Support the work of CIPLIT® and JHLI.
The appointment will be for one academic year, with the possibility of extending for one additional year.
• J.D. Degree
• Excellent writing skills
• Either relevant job experience or relevant scholarly work at the intersection of health & IP.
Other advanced degrees are preferred but not required.
To apply, please submit the following materials by email to Prof. Wendy Netter Epstein, email@example.com, with the Subject Line: Jaharis Fellow Application. Any questions should also be directed to Prof. Epstein.
1. Curriculum vitae
2. Research agenda (including a description of research focus and short description of planned projects)
3. Teaching statement (including list of courses interested in teaching)
4. Writing sample
5. Law school and/or graduate school transcripts
6. Contact information for three references
Decisions to be made on a rolling basis.
DePaul University offers equal employment opportunities to all persons without regard to race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, parental status, housing status, source of income, or military status, in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local EEO laws.
From an email message which I received in recent hours:
The University of Dayton School of Law seeks applicants for a tenure-track Assistant Professor position beginning in the 2016-2017 academic year to teach the required course in Constitutional Law, as well as related upper-level courses.
Applicants must have a J.D. degree from an ABA-accredited law school. Preference will be given to candidates with outstanding academic records; a history of scholarship and publication in the field of Constitutional Law or related subjects; prior successful experience in law teaching, especially if the experience relates to the subjects to be taught; a demonstrated ability to teach constitutional law and related subjects; prior experience in law practice, particularly if the experience relates to the subjects to be taught; excellent communication skills; effective interpersonal skills with various constituencies; and expressed willingness to engage with Catholic and Marianist educational values.
Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience.
To be considered as a candidate for this position, you must apply online at https://jobs.udayton.edu/postings/18525. A CV should be submitted electronically on the website at the time of application. Applications must be received by October 31, 2015.
For more information about the School of Law, please visit our website at http://www.udayton.edu/law or contact the chair of the hiring committee, Professor James Geoffrey Durham, University of Dayton School of Law, 300 College Park, Dayton, Ohio 45469-2772, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The University of Dayton, founded in 1850 by the Society of Mary, is a top ten Catholic research university. The University seeks outstanding, diverse faculty and staff who value its mission and share its commitment to academic excellence in teaching, research and artistic creativity, the development of the whole person, and leadership and service in the local and global community.
To attain its Catholic and Marianist mission, the University is committed to the principles of diversity, inclusion and affirmative action and to equal opportunity policies and practices. As an Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Employer,we will not discriminate against minorities, females, protected veterans, individuals with disabilities,or on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
CAMPBELL UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW invites applications for a full-time, tenure-track faculty position as Director of Advanced Legal Analysis and Writing to commence in Fall 2016. The successful applicant for this position will be expected, among other possible duties, to design, implement, and teach in the law school's upper level writing program, which will include: (i) a new course focused on appellate advocacy (a single-semester, two-credit, required 2L course, beginning in Fall 2016); and (ii) advanced writing electives for 3L students. The successful applicant will design lesson plans for (and recruit, hire, train, and supervise adjuncts to assist in teaching) the appellate advocacy course.
The successful candidate also will collaborate with the Director of the first-year Legal Research and Writing program, the Director of Advocacy, and other faculty to support an integrated curriculum and common goals.
Candidates should have excellent academic credentials, experience in teaching in a law school legal writing program, either as a full-time faculty member or as an adjunct, a proven record of outstanding classroom teaching, and a proven record of (or demonstrated potential for) outstanding scholarship.
The law school is located in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, a location that provides its approximately 450 students with a wealth of opportunities that enrich their educational experience. Raleigh and the Research Triangle are repeatedly cited in national surveys as one of the best areas for starting a new career or business, for excellence in education (from public schools to post-graduate studies), and for enjoyable quality of life.
Consistent with Campbell University’s overall mission (available at http://www.campbell.edu/mission/ ), the law school is a highly demanding, purposely small, intensely personal community of faculty and students whose aim, guided by transcendent values, is to develop lawyers who possess moral conviction, social compassion and professional competence, who view the practice of law as a calling to serve others, and to create a more just society. To that end, the law school has adopted the following distinctives: (1) we offer an academic program that is highly demanding; (2) we bring together the theoretical and practical to produce thoughtful and talented lawyers; (3) we utilize the talents of a faculty that is profoundly committed to students and teaching; (4) we view the practice of law as a calling to serve others; and (5) we offer a Christian perspective on law and justice. More information about the law school can be found on our website: http://www.law.campbell.edu/ .
Interested candidates must apply by clicking here. To be considered, an application must include each of the following: (1) a cover letter of interest addressing the candidate’s qualifications for fulfilling the position, how the candidate can contribute to the University’s mission, and how the candidate can further each of the law school’s five distinctives; (2) an unofficial law school transcript; (3) a current curriculum vitae; (4) a representative example of scholarship and/or a research agenda; and (5) if available, course evaluations for any prior teaching engagements.
I want to thank Al for his kind introduction and both Al and Dan for their help in getting me up and running. A variety of funny things happened on the way to this forum, but I am finally here, late to my own party.
It has been a long time, perhaps almost 50 years, since I last wrote about my summer at the beginning of a new school year. I do not recall the content of those prior exercises, but I am fairly certain that my effort was half-hearted and the product unremarkable. This time I am more motivated, and I hope that I have something worth sharing.
From the beginning of May until the end of August, I served on a Cuyahoga County, Ohio grand jury. We met twice a week from 8:30 to between 4:00 and 5:30. Our cases ran the gamut of felony charges, with drug offenses probably having the single largest share of the docket, accompanied by a broad array of property and other economic crimes, crimes of violence, and a variety of regulatory crimes ranging from environmental crimes to failure of registered sex offenders to give notice of a change of address. On a typical day, we heard somewhere between twenty-five and forty cases, depending on the complexity of the cases and the number of cases continued either because laboratory reports or witnesses were unavailable.
I came to the task with a mind uncluttered by much knowledge of criminal law or criminal procedure. Obviously, I knew something both from law school and from living in the world with my eyes open. I do not teach either subject, however. My clerkship exposed me to a variety of criminal law and criminal procedure issues, but that was long ago. My brief experience in law practice gave me minimal additional exposure in a couple of pro bono matters. I have written on military justice issues, including what is by today’s standard an incredibly long piece on a Vietnam War era court martial case involving an army dissenter. I also sidle up to criminal law and policing issues in some of my teaching. In federal courts, section 1983, Younger abstention, and most notably habeas are in the neighborhood. In various iterations of teaching national security law I have done some teaching on search and seizure, the intricacies of FISA and the Patriot Act, and, once again, habeas. On the whole, however, I am an accidental amateur in the field. Knowing little, there was much for me to learn, and, perhaps, I was more likely not to take the “of course” statements of criminal law and procedure as matters of faith.
I will elaborate in future posts, but the experience was often interesting. It was more or less invariably depressing. They did not bring us happy stories (though from time to time, as in cases involving creative vandalism or particularly inept suspects, they brought us funny ones). I had assumed that I would remember the distinct details of every homicide case, but by summer’s end we had seen enough death that I am not sure that I can recall all of the homicides in precise detail. Other instances of shocking cruelty and disregard for others left our collective spirits sapped. The police often presented domestic violence cases with photographs of the damage done. The hardest cases involved the sexual exploitation and rape of children, especially those cases where the suspect was a close family member.
After I was selected to sit, I told a number of friends who are current or former public defenders or prosecutors how I would be spending my summer. One of the public defenders told me that she was looking forward to hearing tales of prosecutorial misconduct. Happily, I will disappoint her. Though I have strong criticisms of criminal justice in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County, I did not witness rogue prosecutors misapplying the law. Indeed, I liked the prosecutors and admired their professionalism. The problems with criminal justice in Cuyahoga County, and I assume elsewhere in the U.S., are more systemic and thus more intractable. They are of our collective making, not the result of misbehaving prosecutors.
What we do in the name of law is also depressing. Most important, many of Ohio’s choices regarding what to treat as a felony are troubling. I will return to this subject in a subsequent post. Finally, while I came away with the belief that everyone involved in the grand jury process seemed to be working hard and in good faith in an effort to follow the dictates of the law and to do our jobs well, I grew increasingly disquieted by our output. As stated above, I could not point to prosecutorial misconduct. I was impressed by many of the police who presented cases to us, and seldom did I, or my fellow grand jurors, mistrust their account of events, though we sometimes thought their account incomplete and inadequate. My fellow grand jurors clearly understood their task and took it seriously. We were not ham-sandwich-indicting pushovers. We asked questions, including skeptical, challenging ones. We sent matters back for additional information and better explanations from the police. We occasionally called witnesses, and we were not shy about no-billing. Nevertheless, though I think we did our job well, I feel uneasy. Then, after our term was up, I read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ article in the Atlantic about Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the Black family, and mass incarceration and the bottom fell out.
Over the next few weeks I will add a number of posts about my grand jury experience. I wrestled for a while with the question of whether or not I should post on the subject. As a novice in the field of criminal justice, I am certain that those who are familiar with the field will find some of my observations either naïve, or commonplace. Nevertheless, when I did some exploring to see what has been written about grand juries, I discovered that because of rules of grand jury secrecy it is not much discussed. I am hopeful that without violating the rules of grand jury secrecy, I can shed some light on how the institution operates. The Faculty Lounge Visitor’s Guide, which instructs new bloggers, invokes Ralph Elison’s “injunction to African American newspaper editors to write as if the sheriff of their town is reading them.” I am especially mindful of that advice. One of my senior colleagues warned me that before my time a faculty member who served on the county grand jury could not curb his impulse to share tales of the grand jury with his students or any available listener (he also shared faculty salary information with those students). At some point that faculty member found it expedient to leave town a couple of steps ahead of the County Sheriff who wanted to talk with him. I have seen the inside of the Cuyahoga County Jail. I am intent on remaining a non-resident. I will therefore not give the details of any case that we heard, nor identify suspects or victims. I will write about general observations. I will not name my fellow grand jurors, or the prosecutors that we worked with. The County Jail is overcrowded enough without me.
Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome an organic disease that should be addressed by biomedical research, or is it only a psychological condition best treated by some form of psychotherapy? Until recently, the answer to that question was in dispute, with immunologists and microbiologists tending to take one side, and a group of psychiatrists on the other. The latest research, however, has come down decisively in favor of the physiological explanation, to the embarrassment of the doubters and the relief of many long suffering patients.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (also known as Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, or ME/CFS) is an incurable disease with devastating symptoms that include blinding headaches, profound exhaustion, muscle weakness verging on immobility, exertion intolerance, extreme sensitivity to light and sound, and the inability to stand or sit upright. Most patients will tell you, however, that by far the worst part has been the scorn they once had to endure from physicians, employers, and even friends and family, who frequently refused to believe that they were truly sick.
Fortunately, the situation has improved significantly in the United States, where there is now widespread recognition that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a biomedical illness with physiological causes. Regrettably, other countries have not all gotten the news – most notably the United Kingdom, where prominent psychiatrists have successfully argued that it should be treated primarily as a cognitive and behavioral disorder. That may also be about to change, however, because a new investigation – just published on the website of a Columbia University virology expert -- has thoroughly debunked the underpinnings of the British psychiatrists’ approach (more on that after the jump).
I mentioned earlier Kweku Adoboli’s recent podcast interview with Lindsay Fortado of the FT, and listening to it has convinced me that, though his career as a trader may be over, perhaps he has a future in music promotion.
Let me explain.
Adoboli is the UBS rogue trader who was brought up on criminal charges in the UK stemming from unauthorized trading that first came to light in September 2011. He served about four years in prison and was recently released.
Adoboli was a trader on UBS’s four person ETF desk. According to Adoboli, he began off-books trading in 2008 using an account nicknamed “umbrella,” which he used as a slush fund to hide profits until he needed them to cover a loss on some later, rainier, day. As I’ve discussed, such smoothing of profits and losses is a common element in other recent rogue trading cases, including Jerome Kerviel at Société Générale.
The umbrella account is the one element of the case that has finally convinced me of the possibility of an Adoboli made-for-television movie (note to networks: I’m willing to consult on the cheap in exchange for hobnobbing with movie stars . . . or just for free lodging). I think that we’re due for another rogue trading movie. Though Nick Leeson got a real (not TV) movie out of his ordeal -- starring Ewan McGregor, no less -- it was a real dud, which hasn’t prevented me from showing it in class about a dozen times.
The umbrella account turned out to be an important element of Adoboli’s defense. Adoboli’s lawyer, Charles Sherrard argued that all three ETF desk traders, including Adoboli’s supervisor, John Hughes, knew about the umbrella account. Sherrard introduced numerous email and chat communications referencing Adoboli’s “umbrella,” “Rhianna,” and “ella ella,” in an attempt to establish that Adoboli, far from being a rogue agent, was part of a collaborative scheme in which other bank employees (again, including his direct supervisor) acquiesced.
Fortado asks Adoboli about the account in the podcast (“you had an internal fund that you created for the ETF desk, called the ‘umbrella’ or ‘Rihanna’ which was discussed at trial”) and Adoboli repeats his position that others (“many others”) at UBS knew about the trading scheme and either approved, directly participated, or turned a blind eye to it, because it was profitable.
And now, he’s provided another music recommendation. At the end of the podcast, Fortado tells Adoboli that she knows he loves music and asks whether there is a song that is indicative of the way that he felt during the ordeal. His new theme song? Caught in the Hustle, by Immortal Technique:
So if I should ever fall and get caught in a hustle
Let them know that I died while I fought in a struggle
From the hoodrats to the rich kids lost in a bubble
Spray painting on the streets and at the subway tunnels
Write it down and remember that we never gave in
The mind of a child is where the revolution begins
So if the solution has never been to look in yourself
How is it that you expect to find it anywhere else
Well, there’s that then.
I have some thoughts on the interview itself, which I’ll try to return with, schedule permitting.
An important new report entitled: 2015 State of Legal Education: An in-depth look into law school admissions choices” has just been released by Law School Transparency (LST). (Full disclosure – I had a minor role in editing some sections of the report.) The report has already received attention in the press (see this editorial in today’s New York Times) and is likely to receive more in the coming days. It is also likely to be a topic of conversation among current and prospective law students, many of whom rely heavily on LST for reliable information about law schools. I recommend that all law professors and law school administrators read it in its entirety. In the meantime, I offer below a summary of what I consider to be some of the most important findings and recommendations in the report.
As the title implies, the report focuses on the questionable admissions policies practiced by many law schools during the enrollment crisis from 2011 to the present (although there are several other important subjects covered as well). Using a risk profile that I developed based on LSAT scores (first reported here on TFL) the report identifies 74 schools which admitted classes consisting of at least 25% at risk students in the fall of 2014 (statistics are not yet available for the 2015 entering classes). Fully half of these schools, 37, admitted classes consisting of at least 50% at risk students (149 LSAT and below). Most disturbingly, 18 schools admitted classes where over half of the students were categorized as being at very high or extreme risk of failing out of law school or failing the bar exam. (See the list of schools here.)
The report acknowledges that LSAT scores are imperfect predictors, and that the risk presented by admitting a student with a low LSAT score might be offset by requiring that the student have a correspondingly strong undergraduate GPA. Through sophisticated statistical modeling, the report proves that this is not what is happening. (See the section headed “Serious risk law schools did not take enough students with better undergraduate GPAs” in the Analysis section of the report.)
To confirm the reliability of my risk-model, LST managed to acquire data regarding bar passage from two law schools. A school which chose to remain anonymous provided 7 years’ worth of data, and the University of Denver provided 14 years’ worth of data. The data confirms that my risk categories are valid. At the anonymous school, only 16% of students in the extreme risk category (144 LSAT or lower) passed the bar on their first attempt. At the University of Denver, students in the extreme risk category passed on their first attempt at the slightly higher rate of 27%. In the very high risk category (LSAT of 145 or 146), 19% passed the first time at the anonymous school, and 39% passed the first time at Denver. In the high risk category (147-149 LSAT), 23% passed the first time at the anonymous school and 57% passed at Denver.
Adoboli, who just finished a four-year prison term in connection with his loss of $2.3 billion through unauthorized trades while employed at UBS gives a podcast interview with the FT, in which he discusses his life, his work, his rogue trading, and subsequent trial.
The nine-week trial, which I blogged about on a few occasions, generated substantial public attention. I’ll try to check back in with some thoughts about the interview, but for now, wanted to alert readers to the podcast.
The University of Akron School of Law invites applications for the position of Law Library Director, a 12-month tenured or tenure-track faculty position, anticipated to begin in Summer 2016. The Law School seeks a Director with experience and cutting-edge knowledge to provide innovative leadership for the library.
The Director is responsible for the planning and overall administration of the library, including strategic planning, budgeting, hiring, and leading in a technology-rich environment. The Director reports directly to the Dean and works closely with faculty and staff members to develop and implement library services that support scholarly research and the law curriculum. The Director will also have teaching and publication expectations appropriate to the position. Areas of teaching interest include, but are not limited to, Legal Research & Writing, Health Law, IP, Civil Procedure, Immigration, International Law, International Human Rights, and Criminal Law & Procedure.
The University of Akron School of Law is a public, mid-size law school of approximately 450 students located in the Akron/Cleveland metropolitan area. Akron Law prides itself on outcomes including our high bar passage rate (first in Ohio for the Feb. 2015 exam), award-winning clinical programs, national championship trial team program and various areas of excellence. The law library is open to the public. A major building renovation will be taking place over the next several years, creating an opportunity for the next Director to take part in innovative space planning.
Required Qualifications: Applicants must hold both a J.D. and an M.L.S. or equivalent degree from accredited programs. Applicants must have at least five years of experience in library administration.
Preferred Qualifications: A demonstrated knowledge of and experience in library administration, strong interpersonal/management skills, a record of appropriate publication, and a demonstrated record of or potential for successful classroom teaching.
Candidates must submit resume, cover letter and references. For complete details and to apply for this position, visit: http://www.uakron.edu/jobs. Job ID# 9215. While all candidates are required to submit their applications via this centralized system, please feel free to direct any inquiries to Professor Sarah Cravens, Chair of the search committee, at email@example.com. Review of applications will begin immediately. Anticipated start date: July 1, 2016. The University of Akron is committed to a policy of equal employment opportunity and to the principles of affirmative action in accordance with state and federal laws.
As I mentioned a few days ago, the NY Times recently published a much-read piece about Kamakahi v. ASRM, the egg donor class action that accuses the American Society for Reproductive Medicine with illegally capping compensation to oocyte donors in violation of US antitrust law. Yesterday, they followed up with an editorial that, perhaps amazingly, given the heated rhetoric surrounding the case, correctly sides with the egg donors in the litigation.
From the editorial board’s letter:
Guidelines issued by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology suggest that paying a woman more than $10,000 for her eggs is “beyond what is appropriate” and even paying $5,000 or more requires “justification.”
A vast majority of the nation’s fertility clinics follow these guidelines. The stated rationale behind them is to avoid offering so much money that donors, especially those who are often young and poor, will rush to contribute their eggs without considering the risks.
This payment system is unfair. However well-intentioned, it favors the fertility clinics. . . . Meanwhile, it shortchanges the egg donors, whose wishes are ignored in the equation. And if there are indeed risks, they can be addressed and mitigated by the clinics and the doctors, who can strengthen their screening and counseling procedures and provide more information.
By now most readers will have seen the article in Friday’s New York Times discussing Kamakahi v. ASRM, the egg donor price fixing litigation that I’ve blogged about numerous times here. (See links below). I’ll be back later with more to say about the article, but for now wanted to highlight the following quote from Debora Spar, the president of Barnard College and the author of The Baby Business, an excellent book on the assisted reproduction industry. Says Spar:
Our whole system makes no sense . . .We cap the price because of the yuck factor of commodifying human eggs, when we should either say, ‘Egg-selling is bad and we forbid it,’ as some countries do, or ‘Egg-selling is O.K., and the horse is out of the barn, but we’re going to regulate the market for safety.’
ASRM and SART also defend the compensation guidelines on the grounds that they prevent the undue influence and exploitation of egg donors. . . .
It is worth noting at the outset that many countries ban payments to egg donors entirely, due precisely to concerns such as these. Regardless of one’s views on the ultimate wisdom of such bans, they do possess a certain logic — if the lure of payment will cause women to donate who otherwise would not, then one possible solution is to ban payments. An attempt to address inducement concerns through price caps, however, is an entirely different matter.
Today the ALI announced the election of 72 new members. Among the new members are these academics:
Alabama Herman N. Johnson, Jr., Birmingham – Professor, Samford University, Cumberland School of Law
Andrew T. Guzman, Los Angeles – Dean, University of Southern California, Gould School of Law Chris Jay Hoofnagle, Berkeley – Co-Director, University of California, Berkeley Center for Law & Technology Jenny S. Martinez, Stanford – Professor, Stanford Law School Peter S. Menell, Berkeley – Professor, University of California, Berkeley School of Law
Connecticut Abbe R. Gluck, New Haven – Professor, Yale Law School
District of Columbia Kristin Nicole Henning – Director, Juvenile Justice Clinic, Georgetown University Law Center Abbe Smith – Director, Criminal Defense and Prisoner Advocacy Clinic, Georgetown University Law Center
Illinois Lior Strahilevitz, Chicago – Professor, University of Chicago Law School
Massachusetts Gerald L. Neuman, Cambridge – Professor, Harvard Law School
Missouri S. David Mitchell, Columbia – Professor, University of Missouri School of Law Neil M. Richards, St. Louis – Professor, Washington University School of Law
New Jersey Adam Scales, Camden – Vice Dean, Rutgers School of Law, Camden Michael N. Simkovic, Newark – Associate Professor, Seton Hall Law School
New York Linda Sugin, New York – Professor, Fordham University School of Law
North Carolina Michael J. Gerhardt, Chapel Hill – Professor, University of North Carolina School of Law Ralf C. Michaels, Durham – Professor, Duke University School of Law
Pennsylvania Michelle Madden Dempsey, Villanova – Professor, Villanova University School of Law
Tennessee Brian T. Fitzpatrick, Nashville – Professor, Vanderbilt University Law School
Singapore Irene Calboli, Singapore – Professor, Texas A&M University School of Law & Singapore Management University School of Law
Switzerland Ingeborg Schwenzer, Basel – Professor, University of Basel
Today's Washington Post has this column about state laws that restrict (or in some cases mandate) communications between doctors and their patients. It is based on this report by the National Partnership for Women and Families, the National Physicians Alliance, the National Resources Defense Council, and the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence.
Here is the gist of the WaPo column, by Catherine Rampell:
State legislators have repeatedly inserted themselves into exam rooms and under hospital gowns, telling doctors what they can and cannot discuss with patients; forcing providers to recite scripted medical advice they know to be factually inaccurate (abortion can give you cancer, for example); and even instructing physicians to prioritize the financial interests of private companies over the health of their patients.
Rampell goes on to provide several examples; there are many more in the full report. (Disclosure: My daughter is the Director of Reproductive Health Programs at the National Partnership for Women and Families.)
One advantage of ChartaCourse is that you really can make it your own. You can fill it with your own idiosyncratic, eccentric materials. We're professors, after all -- we should own our eccentricities!
So, with a special shout out to Property and Estates & Trusts Profs: Here's a really fun and useful means of teaching about the power of different conceptions of the right to exclude, and of inheritance laws, to shape society.
I've created 4 new set of rules for the board game Monopoly, each reflecting a different economic and legal structure. I embed the rules within my ChartaCourse chart, and find volunteers to bring in Monopoly boards. Student are randomly assigned to one of the 4 games, and are randomly assigned to roles within them. Then we play. But -- critically -- we also record the results with regard to:
the amount of economic activity within the game, and
the economic mobility of the players.
1. Capitalist Monopoly
Students are often surprised when I say that under its normal rules, Monopoly is a rigidly socialist game. After all, it's all about free enterprise, isn't it?
No. Any politician who proposed a law that would require all people to (1) begin their lives with exactly equal resources, and (2) be paid equal wages throughout their lives, would make Bernie Sanders look like Ayn Rand. But those are the normal rules of Monopoly.
So, I created rules for capitalist monopoly, in which the players start the game in very different economic circumstances, and some players are able to capture part of the labor-value of others. Below are the rules:
(Click image to expand)
Naturally, there is a little grumbling by the person who is 'born' as player E, and a little crowing by the person 'born' as player A -- but that's hardly unexpected or unrealistic.
The capitalist game usually devolves into two separate games. The poor have nothing the rich want, and the rich have nothing the poor can afford. Therefore, they do not trade with each other. The rich players trade with each other, the poor trade with each other.
The poor quickly exhaust the resources they have on hand, and their survival depends upon their ability to accumulate and manage increasing amounts of debt, usually at the forebearance of the rich, who want them alive because they have captured some of the value of their labor.
There is economic mobility among the rich and the poor, so that Player B may end with more resources than Player A, and Player E may end with more resources than Player D. But so far, no Player D or E has finished the game better off than a Player A or Player B. Player C, by contrast can have significant mobility up or down, depending on skillful play and the luck of the die.
2. Western European-style Democratic Socialist Monopoly
The idea here is that resources are divided slightly more evenly than under a more capitalist economy.
(Click image to expand)
This game always has the highest level of economic activity, as measured by properties bought, sold or traded, and houses or hotels built. Although there is significant disparity between the starting resources of the parties, most of the players will interact and transact with each other, except that Players A and E will often not transact with each other. Because of this, these games often are the liveliest ones in the room.
There is limited economic mobility among the players. Still, it is rare that a player will move up or down by more than 2 positions.
3. Pre-1989 Eastern European Socialist Monopoly
Resources are divided very evenly, but the heavy hand of the state sharply reduces the utility of individual initiative and removes much of the fun and energy of the game.
(Click image to expand)
This game features the largest amount relative economic mobility between the players, so that occasionally even Player E will end up with more resources than Player A. However, the ending absolute differences among player resources are usually very small. Moreover, as a group, the players usually end up with less money than they started with.
The players usually discover that too much economic activity is counter-productive, since they usually lose more than they make by having a monopoly. Therefore, while economic mobility is the highest in this game, economic activity is usually the second lowest. In addition, as a subjective matter the students seem to have the least fun with this game.
And finally, just for the grim humor of it . . .
4. Stalinist Monopoly
Last time I played this with my students, I was the first person executed.
(Click image to expand)
This game is a lot of macabre fun. The players soon discover the best course is to avoid economic activity and, as their resources dwindle, they often find an advantage to being imprisoned, since they don't have to pay rent or fear 'disappearing.' The 'disappeared' rules are meant to mimic the paranoia of the Stalinist state -- if you show up in places of high power more than once, or display unusual luck, you are eliminated. The only fun is this game is watching each other try to avoid death.
I've played this one with family. The good news is that unlike most Monopoly games, this one is usually over well within 2 hours.
What lessons are taught from all of this?
For me, there are several:
1. Distribution of resources is in part a product of the strength of the right to exclude under various systems.
2. The rules of the capitalist game have strong implications for debates about the estate tax. When some players start the game with more resources than others could hope to accumulate in several lifetimes, the relative economic mobility of the players is extremely limited.
3. The fact that some players amass resources by capturing the value of others' labor, and that the advantage obtained is carried forward into following generations, is a great launching point for a discussion about slavery reparations.
4. When wealth is distributed wildly unevenly, in part because a strong right to exclude prevents redistribution, economic activity can actually decrease. That may be why, for example, we associate less economic activity with a society dominated by a landed gentry. Moreover, what looks like one game can actually divide into very separate games -- picture the completely separate worlds of landed gentry and ordinary laborers in early 20th century Britain, for example, or the separate worlds of Wall St. bankers and the homeless.
5. There is joy and fun in enterprise that doesn't really exist when free markets are squashed.
6. Relative economic mobility, promoted by a weakened right to exclude, can mean lower absolute economic mobility, so that what appears to be an improvement for the poor may actually be a worsening of conditions for everyone. In many ways, happiness in playing the game seems less about relative economic mobility than about a robust opportunity to participate in the economic system.
Yesterday, the Second U.S. Court of Appeals upheld the lower court decision in the ongoing litigation between the Authors Guild and Google Books, holding that the Google Books Project does not violate copyright law and that Google's digital copying of the books is fair use. Story here. Full text of the decision here.