Rio de Janeiro

Capitalism: The Case of Brazil

With the closing ceremonies over, we can breathe a sigh of relief about Rio. The worst snafus of the Olympics were the algae in the diving pools and vandalism by a mendacious American swimmer. As with the Sochi games, the press ran scary pre-competition reports of substandard conditions. In the event, the Russian and the Brazilian…

Admit More Talented Immigrants

Immigration offers many potential advantages both for immigrants and for United States citizens.  Many immigrants increase their human capital just…

Bludgeoning Aspiration to Get to Equality

There is no more fateful failure of modern political thought than its failure to distinguish between elitism and social exclusivity.…

From the Blog

Mike Rappaport
University of San Diego School of Law

The DEA’s Classification of Marijuana as a Schedule I Substance

Recently, the Drug Enforcement Agency once again declined to change marijuana’s classification from Schedule I…

Originalism, Changing Meanings, and Stable Meanings

One of the criticisms made against originalism by historians is that originalism fails to take…

The Tiers of Scrutiny: A Public Choice Analysis

In my last post, I discussed Justice Clarence Thomas’s criticism of the Supreme Court’s tiers…

John O. McGinnis
Northwestern University School of Law

Admit More Talented Immigrants

Immigration offers many potential advantages both for immigrants and for United States citizens.  Many immigrants…

A Campaign for a Seamless Rule of Law

In this year’s presidential campaign, it would be a wonderful contribution to the republic and…

The Constitution Constrains Rent-Seeking Without Eliminating Politics

Greg Weiner, in a characteristically thoughtful post, suggests that libertarian constitutionalism wrongly eliminates democratic politics from…

Michael S. Greve
George Mason University Law School

The View from Berlin

My preceding post noodled over non-German authors’ contributions to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung’s “Crumbling Europe”…

EU Leaders Begin to Doubt “More Europe”

Beginning pre-Brexit and ending post-Turkey coup, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung published a series of articles…

No Vacation from History

My annual vacation in the Frisian Caribbean usually falls into what the German media call the Sommerloch…

Liberty Law Forum

Columns at the U.S. Supreme Court

The Unforgettable Fire: Tradition and the Shape of the Law

What is the relationship of law and tradition? Tradition, either as a proposition of independent legal value or a register in which to discuss and explain the persistence of our legal arrangements, has very little traction today. In law, as in many other areas of contemporary American life, tradition as a normatively powerful idea is…

Read More

Responses

The Courts and Tradition: A Begrudging Respect

Marc DeGirolami’s Liberty Forum essay discusses two contexts in which tradition might influence American law: common law and constitutional law. He suggests that tradition is still robust in the former, less so in the latter. With regard to common law, I think that he’s right that custom underlies a good deal of the law of contracts,…

Read More

American Tradition in Theory and Practice

Professor DeGirolami has written an interesting Liberty Forum essay in behalf of paying respectful attention to tradition as a major aspect of our legal order. However, I think there are two major problems with it. The first is theoretical, particularly in relation to the American political and legal experience. The second has to do with…

Read More

Legal Realism, Legal Revolution

In the first paragraph of his celebrated 1881 book on the common law, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. wrote: “The life of the law has not been logic; it has been experience.” Nor was that the first such expression in the annals of American jurisprudence. At the Philadelphia Convention of 1787, James Madison recorded John Dickinson’s…

Read More