Sunday, September 23, 2012

Law and Econ Project, Update IX

The revisions that I foresaw in August were to:

(1) update Chapter One and the wealth maximization stuff;
(2) "think about revising the material on organ markets in light of Michael Sandel's book, What Money Can't Buy";
(3) and to print out a new, complete version.
In some sense I have accomplished all three, though the thinking about Sandel's book and organ markets has not resulted in any alterations to this point. The changes to Chapter One were pretty extensive, and I also changed the vice material in Chapter Five quite a bit -- though that chapter remains in flux.

What next? I think that I will prepare a subsection on the Sandel critique and organ markets, although whether it makes it into the manuscript is too soon to tell. The flux in Chapter Five has to be brought to an end. Beyond that, just the continuous improvement story...

My Law and Econ class starts soon, and that will help the revision process, I hope. One book that I intend to read in the next few weeks is The Knockoff Economy by Raustiala and Sprigman -- I already draw heavily upon their earlier work for the "Copyright Vacuums" part of the manuscript.

I mentioned in August that I am facing a deadline for a paper on Behavioral Economics and Drug Policy. The deadline has become pressing, without much progress so far, though I have secured a co-author! I imagine the next nDrafts update will concern that paper. But in the meantime, I have taken on another paper commitment, this one on organ procurement; again, I am soliciting for a co-author.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Law and Econ Project, Update VIII

Well, three months have passed since I last recorded my progress to date and proclaimed my intended next steps. I have been busy with some other projects -- a trip abroad, moving house, being ill -- that have crowded out, to some extent, Law and Econ. The goals I previously set looking one week forward, however...
(1) to finish reading Museums Matter, by James Cuno; (2) to revise the first two chapters of the L&E manuscript; and (3) to produce a new version of "The Museum of Law and Economics"...
 ....have been accomplished, if not in one week, at least within three months. I managed to read, as hoped, The Upside of Irrationality, by Dan Ariely. I also wrote a new Conclusions section to the L&E manuscript, and have upgraded Chapter Five (on behavioral law and econ, essentially), along with slight revisions to the rest of the manuscript.

The next couple of months will involve producing a draft of a paper on Behavioral Economics and Drug Policy, so that also will cut into Law and Econ time. (I am thinking of reviving predecessor blog Five Drafts for the purpose of producing the new paper.) What I would like to do pretty soon, however (recall that the manuscript is supposed to be in continuous improvement mode), is to revise the Kaldor-Hicks and Wealth Maximization stuff in Chapter One in a pretty serious way, to think about revising the material on organ markets in light of Michael Sandel's book, What Money Can't Buy, and to print out a new, complete version of the manuscript. Not sure I have any Law and Econ reading I want to commit to, but I do hope to spend lots of time with Kaplow and Shavell's Fairness Versus Welfare -- a book that will help guide me, I think, in those envisioned Wealth Maximization changes in Chapter One.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Law and Econ Project, Update VII

Now my worries, that in the absence of an externally-imposed deadline this commitment blog isn't a big help, are growing. But we press on. April 4 brought a new, bound version of the manuscript, this one even with a (half-baked) "Conclusions" chapter. The Table of Contents has not (otherwise) changed, though there was some upgrading of all of the chapters. Still haven't heard back from that university press that I sent the even worse draft to -- not a good sign.

I did indeed give the related talk on April 1, and that went pretty well. Afterwards, I wrote up a short talk (maybe 15 minutes) entitled "The Museum of Law of Economics," which I have had fun with. I hope to move that talk, as well as the new draft, into the "continuous improvement" mode. I don't much care for the current "Conclusions" to the draft manuscript, and may start that afresh as part of the improvement. For that matter, I don't like the Conclusions to the Museum talk, either. Conclusions are the bane of my existence.

Finished reading Willpower, which was easy reading and helpful for my Behavioral Econ class. Intended reading that I hope will be helpful for the L&E project includes Museums Matter, by James Cuno; How Judges Think, by Richard Posner; The Upside of Irrationality, by Dan Ariely (more for Behavioral Econ than for L&E); and possibly Loot, by Sharon Waxman. I have started reading all of them, but only Cuno and Ariely are on the front burners right now.

So, what to promise in a not-very-committed way? Next week, to have: (1) finished reading Museums Matter; (2) revised the first two chapters of the L&E manuscript; and (3) to have produced a new version of "The Museum of Law and Economics." Onwards...

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Law and Econ Project, Table of Contents

As promised....

Oh, Work in Progress has the temporary title Law and Economics: A Guide for the Curious. My guess is that the title will change a few more times.

Table of Contents

             The Original of Laura
            Choice in the Shadow of the Law

Chapter 1: E pluribus unum
                        Jeremy Bentham
            The Art of the Deal
            Why Maximize Wealth?
                        Common Law and Civil Law
            The Coase Theorem
            Establishing a Market to Erode Rent Controls
            The Coase Corollary
            More on Property Rights and Efficiency: The Tragedy of the Commons
            The Reverse of the Medal: Property Rights and the Anticommons
                        Efficiency When?
            Expectation Damages and Efficient Breach
                        Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., on Bad Men and the Law
            Strict Liability

Chapter 2: What’s done is done?
             Bart and Lance
            Chicago Dibs
                        Advance Market Commitments
            Preventive and Punitory Measures
            Firearm Regulation
                        John Stuart Mill
            Low Probability, High Punishment Regimes
            Destruction of Property: What’s Done Cannot Be Undone?
            Moral Rights: What’s Done Cannot Be Redone?
            Intellectual Property: What’s Done Can Be Done Repeatedly
                        Public Goods
            Nabokov and Existence Value

Chapter 3: Squeezing a balloon

            Using the Law to Serve Distributional Goals
            The Peltzman Effect
            Art Again: Resale Rights, or Droit de Suite
            Squeezing Copyright
                        Creative Commons
            The De Facto Liberalization of the Copyright Regime
            A World Without Copyright
                        Copyright Vacuums
                                    Fashion Design
Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails
            Squeezing Newspapers
                        Hyperlocal News
            Deflating Subsidies

Chapter 4: Deorum injuriae Diis curae
             Low-cost Avoider or Insurer
            Products Liability
            Comparative Negligence
                        Foreseeable Misuse and Attractive Nuisance
            Mill and the Harm Principle
                        Pecuniary Externalities
            Blocked Exchanges
            Organ Markets
                        The Iranian Kidney Transplant Program
            The Parthenon Marbles and Cultural Property
                        Statutes of Limitation
            Standards of Proof

Chapter 5: Crooked timber
             Enforcing Contracts
            Lochner v. New York (1905)
            Dealing with Uncertainty
            The Endowment Effect
            Default Rules
            Organ Donations, Reprise
            Vice, Rationality, and Defaults
            Attractive Nuisance for Adults?

Conclusions (unwritten)
Glossary (unwritten)

Law and Econ Project, Update VI

Hmmm, well, there was a December 11 deadline....

I missed the deadline, but progress has been made, oh yes. The current draft is in the continuous revision phase. There is still no draft of the Conclusions, and no draft of the Glossary. The next revisions are slated for Chapters 4 and 5. I will shortly post the draft Table of Contents so we can see where things stand.

I prepared a prospectus and e-mailed it to a university press. The editor responded enthusiastically, and asked for the entire manuscript. I sent it, but haven't heard back - maybe the draft needs some more of that "continuous revision" before it is ready for distribution?

As for my reading plan, I managed to finish Adam Smith: An Enlightened Life, by Nicholas Phillipson -- it is superb. I abandoned for the nonce This is Your Country on Drugs, by Ryan Grim (2010), and managed to read only small portions of The Collapse of American Criminal Justice, by William J. Stuntz (2011). The Daniel Kahneman book, Thinking, Fast and Slow (2011), filled my time, and helped me decide to offer a course in behavioral economics next quarter. My current reading plan centers on Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength, by Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney -- should be useful for that behavioral econ class.

As for LandE revisions, I intend to input some upgrades to Chapters 4 and 5 in the nest week or so. Hoping to get those Conclusions under way, too. I intend another bound version at that point. Scheduled to give a talk related to the manuscript on April 1, so want to prepare something for that, too.