April 30, 2011


Allen, Thomas Fighting For the King in America's First Civil War (New York: Harper, 2010).

Amar, Akhil Reed, The Bill of Rights: Creation and Reconstruction (New Haven & London: Yale U. Press, 1998).

Bernstein, David E., Only One Place of Redress: African Americans, Labor Regulations, and the Courts From Reconstruction to the New Deal (Durham & London: Duke U. Press, 2001) ("This book presents several case studies of how facially neutral occupational regulations passed between the 1870s and the 1930s harmed African American workers. Sometimes racism motivated the laws, either directly (as when the sponsors of the legislation were themselves racists) or indirectly (when legislative sponsors responded to racism among their constituents). Some laws had the primary goal of restricting African American access to the labor force, whereas in other instances this was a secondary goal related to the broader goal of limiting competition faced by entrenched workers. In yet other situations, racism did not motivate the laws, but the adverse effects on African Americans were foreseen, and critics pointed out the likely adverse effects when the legislation was under consideration. And finally, whether intended or not, whether actually foreseen or not, the adverse effects of some legislation were foreseeable in light of the way labor markets operate." Id. at 5.).

Brinkley, Douglas, The Quiet World: Saving Alaska's Wilderness Kingdom, 1879- 1960 (New York: Harper, 2011).

Cohen, Andrew Wender, The Racketeer's Progress: Chicago and the Struggle for the Modern American Economy, 1900-1940 (Cambridge: Cambridge U. Press, 2004).

Culver, John C. & John Hyde, American Dreamer A Life of Henry A. Wallace (New York: Norton, 2000) ("Wallace gave the star-studded crowd what it wanted. 'Today an ugly fear is spread across America--the fear of communism,' he declared. 'I say those who fear communism lack faith in democracy. I am not afraid of communism.'" "In blistering language Wallace threw open the door to a closet containing America's darkest moments: 'We burned innocent women on charge of witchcraft. We earned the scorn of the world for lynching negroes. We hounded labor leaders and socialists at the turn of the century. We drove 100,000 innocent men and women from their homes in California because they were of Japanese ancestry. . . . We branded ourselves forever in the eyes of the world for the murder by state of two humble and glorious immigrants--Sacco and Vanzetti. . . . These acts today fill us with burning shame. Now other men seek to fasten new shame on America. . . . I mean the group of bigots first known as the Dies Committee, then the Rankin Committee, now the Thomas Committee--three names for fascists the world over to roll on their tongues with pride.'" Id. at 445 (citing Henry A. Wallace, text of Los Angels speech, May 19, 1947.).

Duberman, Martin, A Saving Remnant: The Radical Lives of Barbara Deming and David McReynolds (New York & London: The New Press, 2011) ("The phrase 'a saving remnant' has historically referred to that small number of people neither indoctrinated nor frightened into accepting oppressive social conditions. Unlike the general populace, they openly challenge the reigning powers=that-be and speak out early and passionately against injustice of various kinds. They attempt, with uneven degrees of success, to awaken and mobilize others to join in the struggle for a more benevolent, egalitarian society." Id. at xi.).

Dunn, Susan, Roosevelt's Purge: How FDR Fought to Change the Democratic Party (Cambridge, Massachusetts, & London, England: Belknap/Harvard U. Press, 2010) ("But the purge represented even more than a scheme to restart the New Deal. It was also the precursor of a historic transformation of American political parties. In the aftermath of the purge, the momentum for the kind of party realignment Roosevelt had sought in 1938 through the eviction of the Democratic Party's conservative wing would gather steam, first with the 'Dixiecrat' rebellion of conservative southern Democrats in 1948 and then, over the decades that followed, with Lyndon Johnson's Civil Rights Acts and then with Goldwater, Nixon, and Reagan's appeal to right-leaning Democrats to join the Republicans. By the end of the century, the irreconcilable tensions with the Democratic Party had exploded, transforming the nation's tradition political landscape--and the once solidly Democratic South was solid not more." Roosevelt's purge was a valiant if premature and mismanaged plan to remedy a complex political dilemma. . . . But the legacy of the purge colors American politics to this day." Id. at 7.).

Ellis, Joseph J., First Family: Abigail and John Adams (New York: Knopf, 2010).

Feldman, Noah, Scorpions: The Battles and Triumphs of FDR's Great Supreme Court Justices (New York: Twelve, 2010) (Felix Frankfurter, Hugo L. Black, William O. Douglas, and Robert H. Jackson).

Forbath, William E., Law and the Shaping of the American Labor Movement (Cambridge, Massachusetts, & London, England: Harvard U. Press, 1989, 1991) ("America's labor laws provide far fewer protections against exploitation, injury, illness, and unemployment than the laws of the dozen other leading Western industrial nations. Our laws also exclude more workers from their crabbed coverage. A key reason for the paltriness of American labor law and social provision lies in the fact that American workers never forged a class-based political movement to press for more generous and inclusive protections. Elsewhere in the decades around the turn of the century, labor's national organizations embraced broad, class-based programs of reform and redistribution, but the American Federation of Labor spurned them . . . . How does one explain this; how account for organized labor's historical devotion to voluntarism? And what part did the legal order itself play in the story?" Id. at 1. "'Voluntarism' is the political philosophy that predominated in the American labor movement from the 1890s through the 1920s and continues to color organized labor's outlook today. It stands for a staunch commitment to the 'private' ordering of industrial relations between unions and employers. Voluntarism teaches that workers should pursue improvements in their living and working conditions through collective bargaining and concerted action in the private sphere rather than through public political action and legislation. This voluntarism is labor's version of laissez-faire, and anti-statist philosophy that says the 'best thing the State can do for labor is to leave Labor alone (Id. at 1-2, fn. 3, quoting Gompers, "Judicial Vindication of Labor's Claims," 7 Am. Federationist 283, 284 (1901).).

Heiferman, Ronald Ian, The Cairo Conference of 1943: Roosevelt, Churchill, Chiang Kai-shek and Madame Chiang (Jefferson, North Carolina, & London, England: McFarland, 2011) ("Albeit less studied, the interaction of Churchill, Roosevelt, and Chiang in Cairo is every bit as compelling from a human interest perspective as the interplay between Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin at Teheran and Yalta and offers a sobering reminder of what can happen when policy is made at the very highest level by individuals who know relatively little about the culture of their partners and are not able to separate myths and stereotypes from realities. Summit conferences may make for good theater, but do not necessarily result in good policies, as an examination of the Cairo Conference reveals." Id. at 1. "How much of the deadlock over Southeast Asian policy and Chinese politics was due to such rivalry between the president and the prime minister is not entirely clear, but surely the contest of wills between Churchill and Roosevelt was contributing to the impasse at Cairo. It was not merely the menage-a-quatre between Churchill, de Gaulle, Chiang, and Roosevelt that complicated the proceedings in Cairo and Teheran. Egos were also interfering with coming to terms with the hard decisions the Allies had to make." Id. at 147.).

Holt, Thomas C., Children of Fire: A History of African Americans (New York: Hill & Wang, 201o).

Jasanoff, Maya, Liberty's Exiles: American Loyalists in the Revolutionary World (New York: Knopf, 2011) ("There were two sides in the American Revolution--but only one was on display early in the afternoon of November 25, 1783, when General George Washington rode in a grey horse into New York City. . . . Today, the British were going. A cannon shot at 1 p.m. sounded the departure of the last British troops from their posts. . . . The British occupation of the United States was officially over." Id. at 5. "Generations of New Yorkers commemorated November 25 as 'Evacuation Day'--an anniversary that was later folded into the more enduring November celebration of American national togetherness, Thanksgiving Day." "But what if you hadn't wanted the British to leave? Mixed among the happy New York crowd that day were other, less cheerful faces. For loyalists--colonists who had sided with Britain during the war--the departure of the British troops spelled worry, not jubilation. . . . The British withdrawal raised urgent questions about their future. What kind of treatment could they expect in the new United States? Would they be jailed? Would they be attacked? Confronting real doubts about their lives, liberty, and potential happiness in the United States, sixty thousand loyalists decided to follow the British and take their chances elsewhere in the British Empire. They took fifteen thousand black slaves with them, bringing the total exodus to seventy-five thousand people--or about one in forty members of the American population." "They traveled to Canada, they sailed for Britain, they journeyed to the Bahamas and the West Indies; some would venture still farther afield, to Africa and India. But wherever they went, this voyage into exile was a trip into the unknown, In America the refugees left behind friends and relatives, careers and land, houses and native streets--the entire milieu in which they had built their lives. For them, American seemed less 'an Assylum to the persecuted' that a potential persecutor. It was the British Empire that would be their asylum, offering land, emergency relief, and financial incentives to help them start over. Evacuation Day did not mark an end for the loyalist refugees. It was the fresh beginning--and it carried them into a dynamic if uncertain new world." Id. at 6.).

Kluger, Richard, The Bitter Waters of Medicine Greek: A Tragic Clash Between White and Native America (New York:Knopf, 2011) ("The governor may have felt that the impact from the drastic reduction in tribal living space he proposed at Medicine Creek would be cushioned to some degree by Article 3 of the treaty. This article, Gibbs's brainstorm, allowed the signatory tribes to continue to 'take fish at all usual and accustomed grounds and stations . . . in common with all citizens of the territory' as well as to enjoy 'the privilege of hunting, gathering roots and berries, and pasturing their horses on open and unclaimed lands.' Even though the Indians' residential space was to be narrowly confined, they were free to move about as they had always done for the purpose of feeding themselves and caring for their livestock. Stevens might have hoped this liberating expedient would also serve to relieve the territorial and federal governments of the economic burden of saving the Indians from starvation." "Upon closer parsing of Gibbs's legalese, however, the innocent-sounding conditional phrase tacked on at the end raises doubts. The Indians were free to leave the reservations for food-gathering and pasturing their animals as before--but only 'on open and unclaimed lands.' Weren't the shortly expected multitudes of new white settlers going to file claims to whatever open lands remained in the region. Wasn't such a prize precisely why they were moving to Washington Territory and why the treaties were being drawn up--to get the Indians off their lands so that Americans could take their place? 'Open and unclaimed lands' for tribal fishing, hunting and pasturage would become a sharply diminishing commodity with each passing year unless the government were to set aside public fishing and hunting areas permanently closed to white settlements. No such provision was mentioned in the treaty, so as a practical matter, exile of the Nisquallies to a barren and remote bluff along the Sound would cut them off from their normal, easy sources of nourishment, distance them from work sites where they could earn the white man 's welcome wages, and generally hasten the prospect of their decline." Id. at 86-87. "To further justify himself, Steven told Manypenny that because the treaty's Article 6 allowed the President to move or consolidate reservation sites whenever it suited the U.S. government, the governor planned eventually to move the Medicine Creek Treaty tribes onto a single, consolidated reservation, perhaps as early as that summer of 1855. In other words, Stevens and his staff had not only dispossessed the Indians at Medicine Creek of all but a miserable fraction of their lands but had also deceived them into believing that the three reservations granted to them would provide irreducible havens where they could maintain their tribal identities in perpetuity." Id. at 105-106. From the bookjacket: "The riveting story of a dramatic confrontation between native Americans and white settlers, a compelling conflict that unfolded in the newly created Washington Territory from 1853 to 1857. " When appointed Washington's first governor, Isaac Ingalls Stevens, an ambitious military man turned politician, had one goal: to persuade (peacefully if possible) the Indians of the Puget Sound region to turn over their ancestral lands to the federal government. In return, they were to be consigned to reservations unsuitable for hunting, fishing, or grazing, their traditional means of sustaining life. The result was an outbreak of violence and rebellion, a tragic episode of frontier oppression and injustice." "With . . . empathy and scholarly acuity . . . Kluger recounts the impact of Steven's program on the Nisqually tribe, whose chief, Leschi, sparked the native resistance movement. . .The conflict between these two complicated and driven men [i.e., Stevens and Leschi]--and their supporters--explosively and enormously at odds with each other, was to have echoes into the future." Needless to say, and as one might suspect/expect, this is not the American history taught to schoolchildren in American schools.).

Levinson, Sanford, Written in Stone: Public Monuments in Changing Societies (Durham & London: Duke U. Press, 1998).

McLennan, Rebecca M., The Crisis of Imprisonment: Protest, Politics, and the Making of the American Penal State, 1776-1941 (Cambridge: Cambridge U. Press, 2008) (McLennan argues that "a long continuum of episodic instability, conflict, and political crisis has characterized prison-based punishment in the United States, from the early republican period, down through the nineteenth century, and deep into the twentieth. Far from being the exception to the norm, Sing Sing stood squarely within a long, broad, American tradition of debate, riot, and political and moral crisis over the rights and wrongs of legal punishment, the proper exercise of state power, ad the just deserts of convicted offenders. This book traces the lineage, meaning, and consequences of popular conflicts over legal punishment, from the early republican penitentiary-house, through the great prison factories of the Gilded Age, and the penal-social laboratories of the Progressive Era, to the ambitious, penal state-building programs of the New Deal era." Id. at 3. "Shock punishments administered a swift, maximally painful but typically undebilitating, dose of physical pain to the prisoner's central nervous system. 'Slugging,' stringing-up (or tricing), and ice-bathing were the three most common techniques of the shock mode or punishment and they were routinely meted out to prisoners for poor work or disobedience in the workshops. Such punishments administered short, sharp, bursts of searing pain, and hinted at the physical devastation or death that would follow should the prisoner refuse or fail to render up the required quality and quantity of labor. At Sing Sing, Clinton, Elmira and Albany prisons, a laggardly worker could find himself whisked out of the factory to a punishment room, where a guard locked him to the floor and wall, in a bent-over position, and administered a 'slugging' to his bare buttocks with a wooden or thick leather paddle." Id. at 128-129.).

Ngai, Mae, The Lucky Ones: One Family and the Extraordinary Invention of Chinese America (Boston & New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2010) (See Anderson Tepper, "Melting Pot," NYT Book Review, Sunday, 9/19/2010).

Oshinsky, David M., "Worse Than Slavery: Parchman Farm and the Ordeal of Jim Crow Justice (New York & London: Free Press, 1991) ("Railroad work was dangerous under any circumstances. . . ." "But the convict was more vulnerable than the free worker, and he paid a greater price. Despised, powerless, and expendable, he could be made to do any job, at any pace, in any location. 'Why? Because he is a convict,' a railroad official explained, 'and if he dies it is a small loss, and we can make him work there, while we cannot get free men to do the same kind of labor for, say, six times as much as the convict costs.'" "On many railroads, convicts were moved from job to job in a rolling iron cage, which also provided their lodging at the site. The cage--eight feet wide, fifteen feet long, and eight feet high--housed upwards of twenty men. It was similar 'to those used for circus animals,' wrote a prison official, except it 'did not have the privacy which would be given to a respectable lion, tiger, or bear.'" Id. at 58-59.).

Powers, Thomas, The Killing of Crazy Horse (New York: Knopf, 2010) (See Evan Thomas, "A Good Day to Die," NYT, 11/14/2010; and Ian Frazier, "The Magic of Crazy Horse," New York Review of Books, 2/24/2011, at 32.).

Rasmussen, Daniel, American Uprising: The Untold Story of America's Largest Slave Revolt (New York: Harper, 2011) ("Claiborne put the city into lockdown. 'No male Negro is permitted to pass the streets after 6 o'clock,' he ordered. The city garrison would fire a gun at dusk--the final warning to any black man still in the streets. The gun shot left little to the imagination of what would happen to any male slave found outdoors at night." Id. at 118-119. "Their judicial proceeding complete, the planters shot each of the eighteen slaves sentenced to death, and chopped off their heads and put them on pikes. These pikes they drove into the ground on the levee, 'where every guilty one will undergo the just chastisement for their crimes, with the end of providing a terrible example to all the malefactors who in the future would seek to disrupt the public tranquility.' Kook's and Quamana's heads would be eaten by the crows as the planters returned to their labors." Id. at 157. "If heads on poles were symbols of American authority, they were also symbols of the costs of Americanization. If heads on poles were symbols of control, they were also symbols of the ritual of violence that was the constant underlying element of Louisiana society. This was the world Claiborne and the planter made. This was New Orleans, and the German Coast, in 1811: a land of death; a land of spectacular violence; a land of sugar, slaves, and violent visions." Id. at 163. Also see Adam Goodheart, "Violence and Retribution," NYT Book Review, Sunday, 2/6/2011, at 24. "Rasmussen could d have revisited the Mississippi levees to bring his story of racial paranoia and retribution full circle. In New Orleans in 2005, amid the nightmare of Hurricane Katrina, white panic over alleged rapes and murders by African-Americans led to a still-uncounted number of civilian shootings by police officers and vigilantes. One man was shot in the back while crossing a bridge through a black neighborhood: the Claiborne Avenue overpass." Id.).

Reed, Christopher Robert, Black Chicago's First Century: Volume 1, 1833-1900 (Columbus, Missouri, & London, England: U. of Missouri Press, 2005).

Sharfstein, Daniel J., The Invisible Line: Three American Families and the Secret Journey from Black to White (New York: The Penguin Press, 2011).

Wuthnow, Robert, Remaking the Heartland: Middle America Since the 1950s (Princeton & Oxford: Princeton U. Press, 2011) ("The transformation that occurred in the American Middle West cannot be attributed to any single cause, tempting as it may be to seek answers in the magic of, say, rugged individualism. I break the narrative into several parts. The first is about the struggles of Middle Western farmers in the 1950s. Difficult as those struggles were, they enabled farming to become more efficient and capital intensive. The second is a saga of cultural redefinition. As the Middle West modernized, it rediscovered its legends of hardy pioneers, adventuresome cowboys, and Dust Bowl survivors. It reshaped these legends into a less spatially confined image of congeniality and can-do inventiveness. These new understandings improved the region's self image and contributed to its ability to transform itself. A third story is about public education. The region invested heavily in schools, administered them well, and encouraged children to regard school achievement as their best hope for occupational success. Higher education became the source of both upward and outward mobility. A fourth story tells of small communities that are dying by the hundreds and yet are not doing so very quickly or completely. Community downsizing has been a matter of great concern to the residents of these communities, but it has worked remarkably well for the region as a whole. Small communities remain attractive for low-income families needing inexpensive housing. Many of these communities are within commuting distance of larger towns where work can be found in construction, manufacturing, and human services. High fuel prices are making it harder for these commuters, but electronic technology and decentralization are opening new opportunities. A fifth story examines the growth of large-scale agribusiness and its effects on the ethnic composition of the region. Contrary to takes about ethnic conflicts, the picture that comes into focus from closer inspection is one of greater diversity over a longer period, continuing difficulties for immigrants and undocumented workers, and yet shows a striking degree of communitywide accommodation to new realities, A final story is about the phenomenon least expected in this part of the county--rapidly expanding edge cities. The growth of these communities has been nothing short of spectacular. A yet the sources of this growth lie in more than simply the availibility of land and the decline of smaller towns." Id. at x-xi. Readers should not confuse Wuthnow's "Middle West" with the much larger Midwest. The former is comprised of "Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, Minnesota, Missouri, North and South Dakota, Arkansas, and Oklahoma." Id. at 1. Of course, I was rather shocked to find that , being an Illinoi[s]an, I not consider to be from the Mid[dle] West. Fortunately, the good people at and the United States Census Bureau and Wikipedia (see below citations and footnotes omitted) have stopped my heart from pounding. Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin are in, while Arkansas and Oklahoma are out. Let's us be real. No one ever thinks of Oklahoma and Arkansas as being part of 'the heartbeat of America.').

Midwest as defined by U.S. Census Bureau
"The Midwestern United States (in the U.S. generally referred to as the Midwest) is one of the four geographic regions within the United States of America used by the United States Census Bureau in its reporting.

"The region consists of 12 states in the north-central United States: States: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. A 2006 Census Bureau estimate put the population at 66,217,736. Both the geographic center of the contiguous U.S. and the population center of the U.S. are in the Midwest. The United States Census Bureau divides this region into the East North Central States (essentially the Great Lakes States) and the West North Central States. Chicago is the largest city in the region, followed by Indianapolis, Columbus, Detroit, and Milwaukee. The Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL- IN-WI MSA is the largest metropolitan statistical area, followed by the Detroit-Warren-Livonia, MI MSA, the Minneapolis-St. Paul--Bloomington, MNpWI MSA, and the Greater St. Louis area. Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan is the oldest city in the region, having been founded by French missionaries and explorers in 1668.

"The term Midwest has been in common use for over 100 years. A variant term, "Middle West", has been in use since the 19th century and remains relatively common.[3] Another term sometimes applied to the same general region is "the heartland".[4] Other designations for the region have fallen into disuse, such as the "Northwest" or "Old Northwest" (from "Northwest Territory") and "Mid-America". Since the book Middletown appeared in 1929, sociologists have often used Midwestern cities (and the Midwest generally) as "typical" of the entire nation.[5] The region has a higher employment-to-population ratio (the percentage of employed people at least 16 years old) than the Northeast, the West, the South, or the Sun Belt states.[6]"

April 24, 2011


Brands, H. W., American Colossus: The Triumph of Capitalism, 1865-1900 (New York: Doubleday, 2010) ("Democracy depends on equality, capitalism on inequality. Citizens in a democracy come to the public square with one vote each; participants in a capitalist economy arrive at the marketplace with unequal talents ad resources and leave the marketplace with unequal rewards. Nor is inequality simply a side effect of capitalism. A capitalist economy can't operate without it. The differing talents and resources of individuals are recruited and sorted by the differential rewards, which reinforce the original differences. Inequality drives the engine of capitalism as surely as unequal temperatures drive heat engines--including the steam engines that were the signature devices of industrial capitalism." "Tension between capitalism and democracy has characterized American life for two centuries, with one and then the other claiming temporary ascendance. During he first half of the nineteenth century, democracy took the lead, as the state abandoned property qualification for voting and the parties responded by courting the masses of ordinary men. . . ." "But capitalism fought back during the Civil War. Even as the Republican party freed the slaves, it emancipated the capitalist classes from the constraints by [Andrew] Jackson and his Democratic heirs. Government became the sponsor of business rather that its foe, underwriting railroad construction, raising tariff rates, creating a national currency, and allowing the likes of [J.P.] Morgan to troll for fortunes in the troubled waters of the war." Id. at 5. If democracy and capitalism are, in some respects, antagonistic, which one is riding high in early twenty-first century America? Can one have much doubt that democracy has been on a long losing streak since 1980s. Think hard about the Reagan Revolution. It appealed to the Nixon's Silent Majority, but the appeal took the form of appeals to their anger and resentment. 'I'm being cheated out of realizing the American Dream.' But if one is being cheated, who is the cheater? The reply: Mainly the government and unfair laws and regulations. But if government regulation is unfair, then, by faulty logic, deregulate and let the market decide. The market decided, and the average American got screwed! I don't disfavor capitalism. But capitalism (and greed) has had too long an unchecked run (not even the collapse of the U.S. economy in 2008 will cause more than a pause), and needs to be balanced with just a touch of empathy for those crushed by capitalism's heel. Empathy is a necessary trait of a true, small 'd' democrat. It is the seeing oneself in the lives of others. Empathy is in short supply in early twenty-first century America, where the mantra of the times is 'I've got mine. Now you try to get yours.' Also see John Steele Gordon, "How Economic Brawn Transformed a Nation," NYT, Friday, 11/19/2010.)).

April 21, 2011


G. B. Trudeau, 40: A Doonesbury Retrospective (Kansas City, Missouri: Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2010) ("So this anthology isn't about thee defining events of the last four decades. It is instead about how it felt to live through those years -- a loosely organized chronicle of modern times, as crowdsourced by what was once called 'the Doonesbury gang'." Id. at 8.).

April 19, 2011


Bernard E. Harcourt, Language of the Gun: Youth, Crime, and Public Policy (Chicago & London: U. of Chicago Press, 2006) (" 'Do you think you can govern innocently?' Hoederer asks. In the field of law and public policy, many turn to the social sciences in order to answer yes. . . . Here I throw in my lot with Michael Walzer: 'My own answer is no. I don't think I could govern innocently. But this does not mean that it isn't possible to do the right thing while governing' . . . . In the end, the choice of a methodological approach in social science research is not dictated by science, and the implications we draw for our laws and public policies are not entirely scientific. When we adopt a social science method, we make a decision about the way in which we are going to shape the human subject, and in the possess we dirty our hands. We have made an ethical choice." Id. at 235. "This book . . . is about coming of age. It is about revisiting one's youthful idealism and, in the process, infusing acts with new meaning. In this book I advocate embracing the paradigm of dirty hands in the field of law and social science-a domain of human inquiry that is very foreign and resistant to the idea. I urge that we acknowledge and render transparent the ethical choices that are embedded in lawmaking and policy making. I advocate that we expose the hidden assumptions about human behavior that underlie our social science methods and that we openly evaluate these assumptions by assessing the price we pay when we decide to believe any one of them. Not, of course, that we lie or cheat or compromise out integrity. That is not the meaning of 'dirty hands' that I embrace. What I urge, rather, is that we make explicit the behavioral assumptions that shape our laws and public policies in order to make our ethical choices open and clear." "'Politics is science,' Hugo exclaimed. It is precisely this idea, so commonly applied to law and social science, that we must resist. The very choice of methodological approaches that we take in social science research does not--and more important cannot--rest on a scientific decision. Methodological traditions in the human sciences--whether phenomenological structuralist, or practice theory, to name but a few--are themselves are not falsifiable. There is generally some evidence to support each of the established methodological traditions, and as a s result none of them can be disproved outright. Yet when it comes to their implications for law and public policy, each tends to lead in a different direction. In this sense the choice of methodological orientation in the field of law and social science is not itself a scientific choice,. It is, rather, an ethical choice with important distributional consequences for society and the human subjects." "This insight--this radical insight, I suggest--destabilizes the field of law and social science. It means that lawmakers and policy makers can no longer proceed in the traditional manner: from neutral social science, data collection, and empirical findings to lawmaking and public policy analysis, In the past, this was proper form. Researchers conducted an empirical study . They set forth their research methods, They laid out their data and empirical findings, And then they drew the necessary public policy conclusions, The logic was simple, The direction of inference was straightforward Even the format of the research research paper was set ahead of time, But all of that is in doubt if, as this insight suggests, the policy conclusions themselves are already shaped by hidden assumptions about human behavior that are themselves already embedded in the methodological orientation toward data collection and analysis. The choice of social science approaches and associated methods--whether statistical, ethnological, survey research, or in-depth interviews--is itself a choice that shapes the orientation of law and public policy." Id. at at x-xi. This book is about how youths think about guns and, as a consequence, how we might better think about youth crime and the public policy pertaining to youth crime. The book merits a careful read on those issues. That said, my recent reading of Language of the Gun came at a good time for reason having nothing to do with guns and youth crime. What captured my attention is that radical insight the choice of methodological approach is itself an ethical (and not merely an intellectual) decision. And, moreover, that those of us involved in lawmaking and public policy making, even if only indirectly as law teachers and as law researchers, are making ethical choices in how we approach those tasks. I found myself asking" Can one teach law innocently? Or, does all law teaching involve dirty hand? I concluded that, just as the choice of methodological approach in research, in lawmaking and public policy making involves an ethical choice, the choice of teaching methodological approach is also very much an ethical choice. And here, by 'teaching methodological approach,' I am not simply referring to decision about adopting or not adopting a Socratic Method, but about choices about whether (and how) to incorporate economics, sociology, literature, religion, philosophy, race theory, feminist theory, etc., etc., etc. The teaching methodological approach adopted will impact how and what law students will learn, how they will approach legal problems and issues, how they will practice law, what lawmaking and public policy making they will engage.).

April 17, 2011


Van Cleve, George William, A Slaveholders' Union: Slavery, Politics, and the Constitution in the Early American Republic (Chicago & London: U. of Chicago Press, 2010) ("The Constitution was an obstacle to ending black slavery in America. It was proslavery in its politics, its economics, and its law. The critical question is why. In drafting the Constitution, the Founders were centrally concerned with creating a new framework for continental government. That framework had to respect Americans' concerns about both the political liberty and political power because national unity--and national strength--depended on it. By the late 1780s, a majority of Americans wanted to create a union with a strong republican government that would be capable of creating a continental empire; but to preserve liberty within that empire, they also wanted a government based on federalism principles." "The Constitution's proslavery character was a necessary result of its drafters' effort to endow the national government with strong military, fiscal, and commerce powers and to suppress sectional conflicts while also adopting federalism as its core structural principle. If the new republic's government had not met all these goals, this would in all probability either have prevented the formation of the Union or have led to its early dissolution. But a government that met all those goals could not have been formed and then have territorially expanded as America did unless it protected slavery and its expansion." "The reason for this was that the federal republic created by the Constitution could not act against slavery at the national level and still be strong enough to support American expansion into into the West and to govern a continental empire. . . ." "American were willing to compromise with 'constitutional evil' with their eyes open to create the federal republic, at least where slavery was concerned. . . ." Id. at 271.).

April 16, 2011


Steve Sheppard, ed., The History of Legal Education in the United States: Commentaries and Primary Sources, Volumes I and II (Pasadena, CA, & Hackensack, NJ: Salem Press, 1999) (From Steve Sheppard, "Introduction: Why Study the History of Law Schools?": "In the last three decades of the [twentieth] century the role of legal education in the academic marketplace has reverted to something more like the university law school experience of the early nineteenth century, in which young students used the law as a finishing school and not necessarily as a preparation for an active practice of law. While an overwhelming percentage of law school graduates take licenses as lawyers, increasingly lawyers have moved from practice to alternative careers in publishing, arts, agriculture, management, and a host of other spheres. Thus while the preparation of new lawyers remains a defining element of legal education, law schools also deliberately provide an educational base that is not aimed toward the active practice of law but toward a particular intellectual experience and a concomitant cultural identity. That such an intellectual exposure is needed as graduate experience is in part the product pf another change, the decline of undergraduate education." "The American undergraduate at the close of the twentieth century, particularly in arts subjects, has been granted that most horrible of desires, unqualified empowerment. As universities have competed for students to support institutions defined by growth, students have been given a choice to spend their collegiate years either in the long hours studying alone in the pursuit of knowledge and understanding or in the short hours of searching with others for sexual experimentation and developed social standing. Colleges that provide profitable athletic spectacles while trimming reading lists and essay exams are not simply more attractive; they are also the more cost-efficient. As a result, most students entering legal education at the close of the century are less likely than their predecessors to know the details of government and history, are less likely to have developed ability to discern the meaning of text and context in a writing, and are far less likely to have a careful technique of prose writing and analytical argument. The product of a television-based, consumer society, the majority of the students have come to expect that education should be entertaining, risk-free, and easily accomplished in twenty-minute segments. The product of a generation that challenges authority of all manners, they are unused to investing any source of information with authority and so have difficulty reconciling conflicts among information. On the other hand, these students are more technically adept, capable of using computers and computer networks with a facility that astonishes their elders, and more egalitarian." Id. at 1-4, 2-3. From, Thomas M. Cooley, "Hints to Young Lawyers": "Systematic reading is essential to a steady advance in the law; and what is true of the student days, is true also of the lawyer's business life. The field upon which you enter now is so broad that if you would explore it all you must keep steadily and systematically employed, and if you fail in this, you will not only fail to become thorough and complete in legal attainments, but even when you make examinations with reference to particular cases, you will never be sure that you have not overlooked important principles which will have a controlling influence." "If I had time I might enlarge upon this point perhaps with usefulness, as not only a matter of duty, but of sound policy also. Of poor lawyers our country is full, but the number of those who are really able is comparatively small. He who enters the lower class finds always a sharp and persistent competition, not usually of the most honorable character; he who enters the higher will in any part of the land find a large field ready for his occupation, in which there will be employment at once honorable, lucrative and satisfactory. When one inquires whether there is room for more lawyers, the first point to be determined is the grade of the lawyer; there is always room for a good lawyer, while poor lawyers, who spend their time mainly in places of public resort, and neglect altogether anything like steady legal discipline, are superabundant everywhere." Id. at 3-87-397, 388-389. A bit dry at times, but those seriously interested in the institution of legal education should read this book.).

April 14, 2011


"Unless they're after you for something else you're not worth the paperwork. I've learned that's generally true of life, if you're not worth the paperwork adults won't hassle you. Except for the truly dumb and the nutcases of course, people who act on principle. They'll hassle you." Russell Banks, Rule of the Bone: A Novel (New York: HarperCollins, 1995), at 49.

April 13, 2011


J. M. Coetzee, Giving Offense: Essays on Censorship (Chicago & London: U. of Chicago Press, 1996) ("The most law-abiding countries are not those with the highest prison populations but those with the lowest offender rates. The law, including the law of censorship, has a dream. In this dream, the daily round of identifying and punishing malefactors will wither away; the law and it constraints will be so deeply engraved on the citizenry that individuals will police themselves. Censorship looks forward to the day when writers will censor themselves and the censor himself can retire. It is for this reason that the physical expulsion of the censor, vomited forth as a demon is, has a certain symbolic value for the writer of Romantic genealogy: it stands for a rejection of the dream of reason, the dream of society of laws founded on reason and obeyed because reasonable. Id. at 10-11.).

April 11, 2011


Christa Wolf, Medea: A Modern Retelling, translated from the German by John Cullen, and with an Introduction by Margaret Atwood (New York: Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 1998) ("Not with Akama. He is a man put together out of strangely dissimilar parts. He lives hidden inside carefully crafted edifices of ideas, which he takes for reality but which have no purpose other than to buttress his easily shaken self-confidence. He will brook no opposition, he arrogantly heaps scorn, both veiled and overt, upon less intelligent people, and therefore over everyone, for he must be superior to all. I remember the moment when it became clear to me that he knows little of human nature and that in order to live he must rely on a supporting framework of principles that no one dare question; otherwise, he feels intolerably threatened. One of these principles is his fixed ideas that he is a just man. I could scarcely believe that he was serious, but when he started bringing up all the points in Medea's favor, I understood that it would perfectly suit his convenience to receive tangible proof against Medea. That he was sick and tired of the airs she put on. That he was fed up with having to answer her infallibility with equal infallibility so that he wouldn't feel inferior in her presence. Oh, I've done a thorough study of all the ways that women can affect people." Id. at 62. "Of course, she's not a Queen by any means, and you, my dear Jason, you're no King for Corinth, and that's the best thing I can say about you now. You won't take pleasure in it. Generally speaking, you won't take pleasure in very much anymore. Things are so arranged that not only those who must suffer injustice but also those who do injustice have miserable lives. As a matter of fact, I wonder whether the enjoyment of destroying other people's lives doesn't come from a person having so little enjoyment and pleasure in his own." Id. at 167. Food for thought?).

April 10, 2011


Taylor, Alan, The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels, and Indian Allies (New York: Knopf, 2010) ("The War of 1812 looms small in American memory, forgotten as insignificant because it apparently ended as a draw that changed no boundary and no policy. At best, Americans barely recall the war for a handful of patriotic episodes . . . which obscures the war origins and primacy as an American invasion of Canada." Id. at 10. "Having failed to conquer Canada or compel British maritime concessions, The Republicans redefined national survival as victory. Monroe assured the Senate that 'our Union has gained strength, our troops honor, and the nation character, by the contest.' He concluded, 'By the war we have acquired a character and a rank among other nations, which we did not enjoy before.' . . . Id. at 420. "Although the Americans lost the northern war to conquer Canada, they won the western war to subdue Indian resistance. In 1813, at the battle of the Thames, they had killed Tecumseh, their most formidable Indian adversary and the chief proponent of native unity and resistance. On the southern frontier in 1814, Andrew Jackson had employed superior numbers to crush the Creeks, who lived in present-day Alabama. He had forced them to surrender more that 20 million acres of land--over half of their domain. Although the Treaty of Ghent committed the Americans to restore Indians to their prewar lands, the Creeks recovered nothing." Id. at 428.).

April 9, 2011



Acharya, Viral v., Matthew Richardson, Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh, & Lawrence J. White, Guaranteed to Fail: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Debacle of Mortgage Finance (Princeton & Oxford: Princeton U. Press, 2011) ("In 1916 at the University of Frankfurt in Germany, scientists Martin Freund and Edmund Speyer developed the drug, oxycodone, as an alternative to heroin, which had been branded, marketed,, and sold from 1898 to 1910 by the drug company Bayer as a painkiller. As an opioid painkiller, the expectation was that oxycodone would be a prescription for severe pain, yet would have none of the severe consequences of heroin such as its long-lasting nature, its addictive impact on the brain, and its possible deadly effect if taken in excessive quantity." "In many ways, the development of oxycodone has been a resounding success. It is not only formulated as a single product but combined with numerous over-the-counter painkillers. The product include such familiar names as OxyContin, Percocet, Depalgos, and Percodan, among others. From approximately 11 tons of production in 1998, it grew sevenfold to 75 tons by 2007, approximately 80% of which services the U.S. market." "The problem is that, if oxycodone is not taken rarely and then carefully in moderation, it is highly addictive with almost 100% surety--more so than almost any narcotic, alcohol, or tobacco. With each prescription, the individual needs a little more next time for the same sense of satisfaction--so-called chasing the dragon--leading to a downward spiral. Going cold turkey does not work well as the side effects of withdrawal are severe. And, unfortunately, the United States as a whole has become addicted to painkillers. In the summer of 2010, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reported that abuse of opiod painkillers like oxycodone had risen more than 400% over the past decade with no sign of abatement." "In a similar way, the United States is addicted to home ownership, and there is perhaps no better example than the tax credits provided by the U.S. government for home buying during the finical crisis. . . ." "The housing market felt much better. And while the government was patting itself on the back for easing the housing pain and stabilizing markets, the tax credits expired and, in July 2010, sales of new homes sank to the lowest point since the 1960s, when the government started keeping records. Now, again, there is discussion of what to do next." "Like addiction to painkillers, these remedies provide short-term 'benefits' against increasing costs in the long-term. Which solution lawmakers ultimately choose for the future of the GSEs [government-sponsored enterprises] depends intimately on how they answer the much deeper question of how much society should promote and subsidize hone ownership." Id. at 166-167. Interesting read, providing an interesting prescription for addressing the addiction.).

Baird, Douglas G., Robert H. Gertner, Randal C. Picker, Game Theory and the Law (Cambridge, Massachusetts, & London, England: Harvard U. Press, 1994) (This a primer to the application of game theory to legal problems. From the book jacket: "Organized around the major solution concepts of game theory, the book shows how such well known games as the prisoner's dilemma, the battle of the sexes, beer-quiche, and the Rubinstein bargaining game can illuminate many different kinds of legal problems. The organization of Game Theory and the Law serve to highlight the basic mechanisms at work and to lay out a natural progression in the sophistication of the game concepts and legal problems considered.").

Baker, Tom, & Sean J. Griffith, Ensuring Corporate Misconduct: How Liability Insurance Undermines Shareholder Litigation (Chicago & London: U. of Chicago Press, 2011) ("Shareholder litigation forms an important part of the structure of law and regulation affecting American business. Because public regulators cannot oversee every company at every moment and cannot anticipate or even respond to every report of a potential wrong, a variety of remedies are left in the hands of shareholders themselves. Shareholders who have suffered at the hands of a corporation in which they have invested can sue--either as a class or on behalf of the company itself--to right these wrongs. They thus assume, with their counsel, the role of 'private attorneys general,' with strong personal incentives to detect and prosecute corporate wrongdoing. The lawsuits they bring fill an important gap in the regulatory framework affecting American business." "Shareholder litigation exerts its regulatory effect through the mechanism of deterrence. That is, prospective wrongdoers realize, through the threat of litigation, that they will be made to account for whatever harms they cause and, thus internalizing the cost of their conduct, forswear bad acts. The basic mechanism of deterrence explains much civil litigation. Corporate officers and directors, understanding that they maybe held liable to their investors for the harms they cause, refrain from engaging in conduct that will harm investors and induce them to sue. In this way, shareholders litigation regulates corporate conduct." "The problem with this story in the corporate context is that officers and directors are typically covered under a form a insurance, known as "Directors' and Officers' Liability Insurance' or 'D & O insurance,' that insulates them from personal liability in the event of shareholder litigation. D & O insurance also protects the corporation itself from liabilities it may have in connection with shareholder litigation. This insurance disrupts the deterrence mechanism by transferring the obligations of the prospective bad actor (the officer, director, or the corporation itself) to a third-party payer (the insurer). An actor that is no longer forced to internalize the costs of its actions is no longer deterred from engaging in harmful conduct--managers who are no longer personally at risk for investor losses are less likely to take care in avoiding them, and corporations that are no longer at risk of shareholder litigation are less likely to monitor the conduct of their managers--and the regulatory effect of shareholder litigation is diminished, distorted, or destroyed." Id. at 1-2. This is an interesting read. Though I think the authors may underestimate the significance of potential loss of reputation as a deterrence. Also, for those seriously interested in corporate law, I would strongly suggest taking a stab at reading as sizable chuck of the works cited in the "References," at 267-275.).

Banner, Stuart, American Property: A History of How, Why, and What We Own (Cambridge, Massachusetts, & London, England: Harvard U. Press, 2011) ("The basic message of the book is that our ideas about property have always been contested and have always been in flux. Property is a human institution that exists to serve a broad set of purposes. These purposes have changed over time, and as they have, so too has the conventional wisdom about what property is really like. As new coalitions have formed around particular goals, they have pushed conventional understandings of property in one direction or another." Id. at 3. "Philosophers and law professors sometimes try to discern property's 'true' nature, but the stories this book has told suggest that property is not something that has a true nature. . . . Is it a thing or a bundle of rights? Is it a relationship between people and things or a relationship between people and other people? Is it something we find in nature or something we create through law? What one thinks property is depends on what one wants property to do--that is, what goals one is trying to advance by thinking of property in a particular way. . . . Property is not an end in itself but rather a means to many other ends. Because we have never had unanimity on how to prioritize those other ends, we have never had unanimity on an understanding of property. Our conceptions of property have always been molded to serve our own particular purposes." Id. at 289-290. This is an excellent read!).

Black, Duncan, The Theory of Committees and Elections; and Duncan, Black, & R. A. Newing, Committee Decisions With Complementary Valuation Rev’d 2d edited by Iain McLean, Alistari McMillan, & Burt L. Monroe (Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1998).

Baskin, Jonathan Barron, & Paul J. Miranti, A History of Corporate Finance (Cambridge, England: Cambridge U. Press, 1997).

Brand-Ballard,Jeffrey, Limits of Legality: The Ethics of Lawless Judging (New York & Oxford: Oxford U. Press, 2010) ("The rhetoric of lawyers is legalistic, too. An essential part of a litigator's job is to persuade the judge that the law at least permits a ruling in favor of her client. Even when a litigator presents arguments from justice or policy, she presents them as arguments about what the law says or should say. She encourages the judge to understand existing law in a certain way or to develop the law in a certain direction. She knows that judges sometimes deviate and she will encourage deviation if the law disfavors her client, but she will do so by persuading the judge to believe, or at least to assert, that the law permits what it actually forbids. Urging a judge to deviate in so many words is a rare act of desperation. If judges actually have an all-things-considered moral obligation to obey restrictive rule, then encouraging them--whether explicitly or implicitly--to deviate is probably unethical, too, even in suboptimal-result cases. By contrast, if selective optimization is permissible, then encouraging judges to deviate in suboptimal-result cases is not unethical." Id. at 312. "From the book jacket: "Judges sometimes hear cases in which the law, as they honestly understand it, requires results that they consider morally objectionable. Most people assume that, nevertheless, judges have an ethical obligation to apply the law correctly, at least in reasonably just legal systems. This is the view of most lawyers, legal scholars, and private citizens, but the arguments for it have received surprisingly little attention from philosophers." "Combining ethical theory with discussions of case law, Jeffrey Brand-Ballard challenges arguments for the traditional view, including arguments from the fact that judges swear oaths to uphold the law and arguments from our duty to obey the law, among others. He then develops an alternative argument based on ways in w"neutral framework rather than the agent-relative framework favored by many moral philosophers. Defying the conventional wisdom, [he] argues that judges are not always obligated to apply the law correctly. Although they have an obligation not to participate in patterns of excessive judicial lawlessness, an individual departure from the law so as to avoid an unjust result is rarely a moral mistake if the rule of law is otherwise healthy." I am completely unconvinced!).

Bossaerts, Peter & Bernt Arne Odegaard, Lectures on Corporate Finance, Second Edition (Singapore: World Scientific, 2006).

Committee on Negotiated Acquisitions, The M&A Process: A Practical Guide for the Business Lawyer (Chicago: American Bar Association, 2005).

Dickie, Robert B., Financial Statement Analysis and Business Valuation for the Practical Lawyer, Second Edition (Chicago: American Bar Association, 2006).

Diffie, Whitfield, & Susan Landau, Privacy on the Line: The Politics of Wiretapping and Encryption: Updated and Expanded Edition (Cambridge, Massachusetts, & London, England, 2007) ("Invasions of privacy have occurred despite legal provisions to the contrary. The debate about cryptography is a debate over the right of the people to protect themselves against government surveillance. But privacy intrusions are difficult to uncover. Many are suspected but few are proven. Those that are discovered are frequently exposed only as a result of years of litigation or though a major investigation like the Church Committee hearings of the 1970s. . . . " Id. at 156. "What type of society does the United States seek to be? The incarceration of Japanese-Americans during World War II began with an invasion of privacy and ended in the tyrannical disruption of many individual lives. Could the roundup of Japanese-Americans have occurred so easily if the Census Bureau's illegal cooperation had not made the process so efficient? The purpose of the Bill of Rights is to protect the rights of the people against the power of the government. In an era when technology makes the government ever more efficient, protection of these rights becomes ever more important." Id. at 170. "The right to be let alone is not realistic in modern society. But in a world that daily intrudes upon our personal space, privacy and confidentiality in discourse remain important to the human psyche. Thoughts and values still develop in the age-old traditions of talk, reflection, and argument, and trust and privacy are essential. Our conversations may be with people who are at a distance, and electronic media may transmit discussion that once might have occurred over a kitchen table or on a walk to work. But confidentiality-and the perception of confidentiality--are as necessary for the soul of mankind as bread is for the body." Id. at 11. "Anonymity and identity are among the many threads in human culture that have existed in uneasy harmony for millennia. The revolutionary changes of the 1990s--globalization, mobility, greater availability of information--brought many of these threads into open conflict, and a new balance among them has yet to be found." "At a moment in human history, however, when reflection and tolerance might have served us best, the events pushed everyone in a direction that, by maximizing security, minimized privacy and individual liberty." Id. at 275. "The task is simple to explain but far harder to achieve. If we do not incorporate adequate security measures in our computer and communications infrastructure, we risk being overwhelmed by external enemies. If we put an externally focused view of security ahead of all other concerns, we risk being overwhelmed by their misuse. We must find a set of rules and a mechanism for overseeing those rules that allows society to defend itself from its genuine enemies while keeping communication surveillance from stifling dissent, enforcing morality, and invading privacy. If we do not, the right to use privacy-enhancing technology that was won in the 1990s will be lost again." Id at 334-335.).

Jackson, Howell E., Louis Kaplow, Steven M. Shavell, W. ip Viscusi, & David Cope Analytical Methods for Lawyers (New York: Foundation Press, 2003) ("This text was created to accompany a course . . . at Harvard Law School. The course and the text grew out of [the authors'] joint realization that the traditional law school curriculum, with its focus on the development of analogical reasoning skills and legal writing and research, left many law students inadequately prepared for upper-level law courses and, more importantly, for legal practice in the modern world. Lawyers, whether corporate counsel or public interest advocates, must work in settings where effective argumentation and the giving of sound legal advice often depend on mastery of language and techniques derived from disciplines such as economics, accounting, finance, and statistics, stapes of the modern business schools curriculum, but notably absent, in introductory form, from law school classrooms. . . . " "It has been our experience that the students who lack background in these critical areas are themselves acutely aware of their deficiency (or are made aware of it when they encounter their first law and economics discussion in torts and contracts) . . . ." Id. at v. Topic covered: decision analysis, games and information, contracting,accounting, finance, microeconomics, economic analysis of law, fundamental of statistical analysis and multivariate statistics.).

Jackson, Matthew O., Social and Economic Networks (Princeton & Oxford: Princeton U. Press, 2008) ("Social networks permeate our social and economic lives. They play a central role in the transmission of information about job opportunities and are critical to the trade of many goods and services. They are the basis for the provision of mutual insurance in developing countries. Social networks are also important in determining how diseases spread, which products we buy, which languages we speak, how we vote, as well as whether we become criminals,how much education we obtain, and our likelihood of succeeding professionally. The countless ways in which network structures affect our well-being make it critical to understand (1) how social network structures affect behavior and (2) which network structures are likely to emerge in a society. The purpose of this monograph is to provide a framework for an analysis of social networks with an eye on these two question." Id. at 3.).

Klein, William A., John C. Coffee, Jr., & Frank Partnoy, Business Organization and Finacne: Legal And Economic Principles 11th ed. (Concepts and Insights Series) (New York: Foundation Press, 2010) ("The principle objective of this book is to explain, in simple terms but not simplistically, (a) the basic economic elements and legal principles, as well as the language, of business organization and finance; (b) the interrelationships between and among the economic elements and legal principles; and (c) the practical importance of a basic understanding of those elements, principles, and interrelationships... ." Id at iii.).

Landau, Susan, Surveillance or Security: The Risks Posed by New Wiretapping Technologies (Cambridge, Massachusetts, & London, England, 2010) ("Throughout this book, when I say the Internet, I mean the packet-moving layered architecture described in chapter 2. The Internet does not include the applications--the Googles, Facebooks, and so on--that lie above this architecture. Often the public conflates these two. I owe the observation about the confusion to Stefan Savage, who pointed out that engineers and the public have two differing definitions of the Internet. While there are security problems in both Internets, the ones that make securing the Internet extremely difficult are the ones inherent in the packet-moving architecture. This book focuses on these problems." Id. at ix. "In the decade since the attacks of September 11, in an attempt to keep the nation safe, the U.S. government has embarked on an unprecedented effort to build surveillance capabilities into communication infrastructure." "[T]he issue of who is defending what runs more deeply than the question of whether we are diverting funds from techniques that may provide better security. What are these communication surveillance systems? Who are the guards? Are they really protecting us? Or are they working for someone else? Could these surveillance capabilities be turned by trusted insiders for their own profit, or used by our enemies to access our secrets? The fundamental issue is whether, by housing wiretapping within communication infrastructure, we are creating serious security risks. Understanding whether building wiretapping into communication infrastructure keeps us safe requires that we understand the technology, economics, law, and policy issues of communication surveillance technologies. That is the point and purpose of this book." Id. at xii-xiii. "For a moment, suppose that we grant that under emergency circumstances, justice and domestic tranquility can take a second place to security. Under the U.S. constitutional system, such periods should be brief. The absence of liberties should be measured in days and weeks, not months and years. It should never be decades. That is where the problem of changing technological standards to accommodate wiretapping becomes very important. Even if we were to grant that liberty can briefly take a second place to security, changing technological standards to accommodate wiretapping fails the test, because it becomes a change of decades, a change that is far greater than is permissible under the Constitution. . . ." "In the case of large, complex infrastructure, standards last for decades (the PSTN must recognize the 1950s telephone that sits on my desk). We have seen many instances of security vulnerabilities in interception systems. The longevity of technology infrastructure increases the risk that the eavesdropping capabilities might be used against the United States, destroying those very 'blessings of liberty for our posterity'." Id. at 202. "What is the right approach in securing the nation's communications as we face the competing--and contradictory--demands of a mobile society, critical infrastructure that is increasingly reliant on an IP-based network, and a dangerous, nihilistic foe? How should we structure communications surveillance? Any resolution of these questions must adhere to the fundamental principles espoused in the U.S. Constitution, principles very similar to those espoused in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights. . . . Id. at 203. "The founders sought to build a government that would act carefully and deliberately. They wanted to insulate the system from the potential that short-term decisions made in the heat of an 'emergency' might limit freedom and justice, perhaps for the long term. The checks and balances built into the U.S. form of government usually work to delay hasty action. This is not to say that during previous times of stress, the government has not acted against the rights of the people; such actions have included the 1798 Alien and Sedition Acts, the suspension of habeas corpus during the Civil War, and the internment of Japanese-American citizens during World War II. The U.S. form of government was deliberately designed to slow such processes down; such a slowdown could cool the heat of the moment and sometimes prevent some of these actions from occurring." "It is easy to imagine that communications surveillance is imperative to the nation's security, but in fact, there is no right more important to democracy than the right of the public to communicate securely. Secure communication underlies freedom and that nation's and the people's security." Id. at 256. At times a technical-read, but not unduly so; and worth the effort. Food for thought. Food for concern.).

Lawless, Robert M., Jennifer K. Robbennolt, & Thomas S. Ulen, Empirical Methods in Law (New York: Aspen Publishers/Wolters Kuwer Law & Business, 2010) ("Several years ago [the authors] began talking about the fact that empirical studies seemed to be coming a larger part of legal scholarship. While the empirical study of legal topics is not new, there was nowhere in the traditional law school curriculum where one could learn empirical techniques so as to be an intelligent consumer or a proficient creator of empirical work. . . " Id. at xix. "This book about empirical methods in legal research is, fittingly, an experiment. It is an experiment in communicating the technical details of empirical research in a relatively nontechnical manner while being mindful of the precautions and pitfalls of doing that research. It is also an experiment in being comprehensive about the many steps involved in understanding an empirical research project in law. . . . [W]e believe that this is one of the first attempts to provide a broad textual treatment of the subject--taking the reader through the entire process of posing an empirical question, deciding on the method or methods by which to pursue that research question, gathering and coding the data, analyzing the data, and then communicating one's results--with an emphasis on legal research." Id. at xxi.).

Malkiel, Burton G., A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Time-Tested Strategy for Successful Investing/Completely Revised and Updated (New York: Norton, 2003) ("Greed run amok has been an essential feature of every spectacular boom in history. In their frenzy for money, market participants throw over the firm foundations of value for the dubious but thrilling assumption that they too can make a killing by building castles in the air. Such thinking can, and has, enveloped entire nations." Id. at 34. Read this book not as an investor, but as a lawyer trying to keep your clients from, out of greed, doing something really and truly stupid.).

Seligman, Joel, The Transformation of Wall Street: A History of the Securities and Exchange Commission and Modern Corporate Finance, 3rd. ed. New York: Aspen Publishers, 2003) (In light of the nearly total meltdown of the American economy in 2008, even the most recent materials in this third edition of The Transformation of Wall Street, published not even a decade ago, seem like ancient history. However, though the particulars of the meltdown and the SEC's role in that meltdown might surprise Seligman, he would not be surprised by the fact that circumstances of the late 1990s were not necessarily a good basis for predicting what things would look like at the end of the fist decade of the twenty-first century. "History is also the study of the consequences of events. In the short term the enactment of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in 2002 is one consequence of a period characterized by a serious deterioration in law compliance. Only decades from now will history fully be able to appraise the extent to which the new law and a significant increase in SEC budget and staff size restored the vitality of federal securities regulation." "What even this brief interval after the great bull markets of the 1990s, however, does illustrate is that the problems that led to the enactment o the SEC in the first place are perennial. Conflicts of interest, misleading disclosure, and outright fraud do not decline by fiat, but only when a vigilant SEC is on the job." "This history of the agency is a warts and all description of its first 67 years. It highlights above all else that the enactment o a law may matter little unless it is effectively enforced." Id. at xi-xii.).

Stearns, Maxwell L., & Todd J. Zywicki, Public Choice Concepts and Applications in Law (St. Paul. MN: American Casebook Series) (West/Thomson Reuters, 2009) ("Public choice theory has emerged an essential part of the modern legal scholarship landscape because it provides a means of closing the gap between the normative prescriptions associated with the traditional economic analysis of law, on the one hand, and the observed realities of legal practice and doctrine, which so often resist wide ranging calls for reform, on the other hand. Public choice is not merely an antidote, or complement, to the neoclassical law and economics scholarly tradition. Instead, public choice presents it own independent set of tools that provide the means for restoring a positive analysis of, and appreciation for, some of the most confounding features of law and public policy." Id. at vii. This is a very good introductory text.).

Tirole, Jean, The Theory of Corporate Finance (Princeton & Oxford: Princeton U. Press, 2006).

Von Neumann, John, & Oskar Morgenstern, The Theory of Games and Economic Behavior (Sixtieth-Anniversary Edition)(Princeton & Oxford: Princeton U. Press, 2004).

Worthington, Sarah, Propriety Interests in Commercial Transactions (Oxford & New York: Clarendon Press/Oxford U. Press, 1996) (This book may be of interest to American students of commercial law, especially those interested in security interests in personal property. This assume, of course, that the American students is curious as to how certain familiar types of commercial transactions are handled under English law. From the book jacket: "This book provides an analysis and overview of personal property in a commercial context. Two features of the analysis are significant. The first is the unavoidable integration of contract and property law. Although proprietary interests may be broadly classified as ownership or security interest, these are relative concepts which are frequently subject to impinging contractual arrangements. The second is the prevalence of equitable proprietary interests, This prevalence is directly related to the case with which equity is able to convert personal obligations into proprietary remedies. . . .").

Oops! I guess this list of suggested readings is not for the faint-hearted.