April 01, 2018
As usual, Larry Solum (Georgetown) has a funny April Fool's joke entry. (I'm not sure this gag will be as successful as the one from 2010, which led to people, especially students, asking me for the article Larry described for years afterwards!)
UPDATE: And in the spirit of the day, several readers call my attention to this amusing piece by Columbia's David Pozen.
March 27, 2018
March 15, 2018
February 02, 2018
January 08, 2018
The top 11 "most downloaded" law authors in the last 12 months are eleven tax professors who co-authored two papers on the recent tax overhaul, which garnered a prominent mention in The New York Times, leading to more than 70,000 downloads in the last month. For 10 of these 11 tax professors, these two NYT-plugged papers constitute 95% or more of all their downloads. The traditional #1 in downloads among law professors, Cass Sunstein, is now a mere 12th! This has happened before with SSRN, but usually involving one author (e.g., Christopher Fairman, or Daniel Solove). Farewell to SSRN downloads as a metric of any interest for at least a year!
October 18, 2017
April 03, 2017
Mary Bilder (Boston College) wrote an opinion piece for the Boston Globe about originalism and Judge Gorsuch. This elicited the following astonishing reply from originalist Larry Solum (Georgetown) on his usually benign and informative Legal Theory Blog. Some of the questions might have made sense were Solum the referee for a scholarly article making some of these claims; as a response to an op-ed, they are almost comical overreactions. Take just Solum's first intervention:
Question One: You wrote the following:
Today, most originalists contend that a judge should abide by the text’s “original public meaning” — a term of art that originalist scholars have written thousands of pages trying to explain.
What is the basis for the page count? Which articles by which originalists scholars are you discussing? I am very familiar with the theoretical literature on original public meaning, but if this claim is correct there is a large body of work that I have missed entirely.
The basis for the "page count"? Seriously? One can look just at Solum's own SSRN page to find at least 400 pages of writing on this topic. And that's just one author. Add in Randy Barnett, Keith Whittington, the late Justice Scalia, John McGinnis, Michael Rappaport, Larry Alexander, Will Baude, and Stephen Sachs, and "thousands" seems like a plausible off-the-cuff estimate. But why quibble about nonsense like this?
I would advise Prof. Bilder to let these questions pass in silence.
UPDATE: Prof. Solum replies here; I will give him the final word on this matter!
February 02, 2017
This is classic:
Courts of equity have a tradition of aiding the helpless, such as infants, idiots and drunkards. The average security holder in a corporate reorganization is of like kind.
This comes from "Some Realistic Reflections on Some Aspects of Corporate Reorganization," 19 Virginia Law Review 541, 569 (1933). (I owe the reference to a working paper by my colleagues Douglas Baird, Anthony Casey, and Randy Picker.)