Monday, September 8, 2014

Law and Econ Project, Update XIII

Well, in at least one dimension, the recent plan has been fulfilled: I made it all the way through the nutshell series book on Law and Economics. Enjoyed it, too. The seemingly more pressing matter of completing my own book also has been accomplished, more or less, though not according to the detailed plan. Nonetheless, everything (except the Acknowledgements) is about ready to go. There will be some frantic last minute revising over the next week or two -- so I won't adopt any deadlines for reading -- but the final version should look pretty much like the current one. Not sure whether that is good or bad news.

I'll append the Table of Contents.  When I compare it with the version from 2.5 years ago, well, yes, changes (I hope improvements) have been made, but the similarities seem to dominate the differences. (Chapters 3, 4, and 5, largely are intact -- I wonder how much those intact sections themselves have been revised?) Hmmm. For my own edification, I'll put asterisks next to new or perhaps massively altered sections.

Concepts in Law and Economics: A Guide for the Curious
Jim Leitzel

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 Aggregate Wellbeing?
                        *Just Compensation
            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
                        *An Aside on View Blocking
            *What Happens When a Property Right is Infringed?

 Chapter 2: Efficiency pluribus unum
 *The Sixty Minute Law School
*Property, Mostly a Reprise
            *Who Owns Meteorites?
            Expectation Damages and Efficient Breach
                        Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., on Bad Men and the Law
            Strict Liability
            *Purposes of Punishing Crime
Efficiency When?
Standards of Proof

 Chapter 3: 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?
                        *Defacing or Improving?
            Intellectual Property: What’s Done Can Be Done Repeatedly
                        Public Goods
            Nabokov and Existence Value

 Chapter 4: Squeezing a balloon
             The Peltzman Effect
                        *Endangered Species
            Art Again: Resale Rights, or Droit de Suite
Using the Law to Serve Distributional Goals
            Squeezing Copyright
                        Creative Commons and Open Access
            The De Facto Liberalization of the Copyright Regime
            A World Without Copyright
Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails
            Copyright Vacuums
                        Fashion Design
            Squeezing Newspapers
                        Hyperlocal News
            Deflating Subsidies

 Chapter 5: 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
            Kidney Markets
                        The Iranian Kidney Transplant Program
            The Parthenon Marbles and Cultural Property
                        Statutes of Limitation and Adverse Possession
Chapter 6: Crooked timber
             Enforcing Contracts
                        Lochner v. New York (1905)
            Dealing with Uncertainty
            *Willpower Lapses
            The Endowment Effect
            Default Rules
            Organ Donations, Reprise
            *Selling Kidneys
            Vice, Rationality, and Defaults
            *Re-legalizing Drugs
                        *An Option to Commit to Opting Out: Self-Exclusion
            *Preventive and Punitory Measures, Again
            *A Happy Ending?




Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Law and Econ Project, Update XII

The schedule for revisions to the Law and Econ manuscript now looks like this. (I have to intersperse them with my work on a new kidney paper.) By the end of July, I want to have new versions of each of the Chapters. I am working on Chapter Two now. (This is a different Chapter Two from two years ago, as the end bits of Chapter One were siphoned off to form the basis of the new Chapter Two. So now there are six chapters.) I also want to complete the Glossary, which I currently am only about one-third of the way through. I want to print the end of July version, and then, by August 15, have produced a new complete draft. Finally, at the end of August, a third version should appear, one that I hope to submit to the unnamed university press publisher as the "final" version. Did I mention that the working title has evolved into Concepts in Law and Economics: A Guide for the Curious?

As for book reading related to the Law and Econ project, I have made lots of progress but not finished the nutshell series book on Law and Economics mentioned in the previous post. One book I did finish and found both helpful and fascinating is Bentham: A Guide for the Perplexed, by Philip Schofield, though the similarity of our subtitles is a coincidence. This book motivated me to visit Jeremy in person a couple weeks ago.

In early August I am slated to deliver two lectures related to the material in the book. I already am getting nervous over the prospect of preparing Power Point slides. I usually don't employ such slides, but the audience will involve some non-native English speakers, and I have found slides to be useful in similar settings in the past. But preparing the lectures might help me revise the manuscript, too, or at least I can hope.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Law and Econ Project, Update XI, and a Contract

Well, here's some news: unnamed university press would like to publish the Law and Econ tome. And as I would like them to publish it, we have a meeting of the minds, and a signed contract. My goal is to send the "final" version, one I am happy with, on September 1, 2014 -- no snickering from those who recall some past (passed) deadlines. Lots of revisions to go, and as I mentioned before, I will start with the suggestions of the four reviewers. As I am looking over the current version, I see some holes that require completely new material, and that always takes some time. So I have a hard time laying out a schedule of revisions. But first I will go through the manuscript, without referencing the review comments (though even I remember some of them). Then I will start making the changes that I have identified, in concert with trying to address the reviewers' concerns. I have already looked over about 40% of the manuscript, and I hope to complete this first step, the remaining 60%, this week, let's say, by Saturday, April 19. Then, just two weeks or so later, on Sunday, May 4, I would like to have a new draft, with reviewer comments accounted for, in hand.Oh, here's a thought, I will have that version bound, to ease the next round of reading and revising.

In committing to reading, hmmm, well, I have never read the nutshell series book on Law and Economics, though I have started it. Now seems like a good time to take that on!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Law and Econ Project, Update X, etc.

OK, there has been a 16-month hiatus in posting. Does that mean there has been a 16-month hiatus in progress on the Law and Econ draft? Discriminating folks like myself are unwilling to reveal that sort of sensitive information.

But where do things stand? Well, I sent a revised -- yes, so there, there was "progress," I knew you would get it out of me -- manuscript to unnamed university press in October of 2013, and have received back three helpful sets of comments, with a fourth one in the pipeline, it seems. Irrespective of the manuscript's fate at unnamed university press, I feel like a few months of revisions are ahead of me -- even with my low standards, the manuscript isn't quite where I would like it to be right now. As for the nature of those revisions, I think for the first pass I will follow the advice of the anonymous reviewers. The hope is that the "continuous improvement" project will result in a tighter, more coherent manuscript. Right now I am happy with many of the individual sections, but not with the overall package. Perhaps I'll save more details for a follow-up post.

One part of the LandE project that has been upgraded, I think, is that concerning selling kidneys -- actually, multiple sections of the manuscript involve kidney sales, oddly enough. These revisions owe a lot to my friend Randy Beard, an expert on organ procurement, who kindly co-authored a symposium paper with me; a less-than-final version of the paper is here, in pdf format.

Back when this blog was "active" I used it to mention books that I was intending to read -- books both related and unrelated to the Law and Econ project. I am happy to report that in 2012 I really did finish reading The Knockoff Economy by Raustiala and Sprigman. Subsequently, I read three of the Oxford Introductions to American Law (Contracts, Property, and Torts, in that order -- I liked Torts the best), though I could do with a refresher on much (or all) of the material. The books that are in the pipeline by and large I am not willing to commit to reading at this point, even to the limited extent to which mentioning them on a blog is committing. Some of my reading continues to be devoted to behavioral economics, which I am slated to teach for the third time in the spring.

Today's return to nDrafts was motivated by a return to Five Drafts, a return that was itself motivated by a need to produce a vice policy paper in the next couple of months. And I have other blog projects that require attention, oh yes they do...

Well, it is good to be back with my online to-do list, even though it is hard to say why.