Law & Government

Greed Is Not Good: The Social Usefulness of Progressive Public Policy

Progressive public policy has chiefly appealed to one of two great social values: A sense of fairness; or a concern for the welfare of others. Consider the Civil Rights Acts of the 1960’s. This body of legislation was promoted and defended on the basis of fairness. Whole classes of Americans — African-Americans principally — were… Read more »

May a man marry a man?

I have written a new law review article which explores a series of medieval legal texts that debate the question, “may a marry a man?”

The End of the Papal Monarchy?

  The Papacy is a monarchy. It is recognized as such at international law. Like monarchies of all places and times, the papacy has depended on mystification to keep its reign intact. Monarchies require distance between ruler and ruled. They demand an elaborate etiquette, pomp, circumstance, ritual and respect. The person of the monarch stands… Read more »

Bitcoins, Tulips and Libertarians

What is it about the libertarian infatuation with bitcoins? Ron Paul announced in early December that the bitcoin could “destroy the dollar.” He seemed to be gloating. In Chile, a collection of “anarchists, libertarians, and Ron Paul supporters” have founded a libertarian utopia they have named “Galt’s Gulch,” which will accept payment in bitcoins. Sensibly, the “farm workers and… Read more »

A Tale of Two Roll Outs

The Affordable Care Act’s roll out has not gone smoothly. No one should sugar coat its debut.

Bigger and Badder Than Before: The Second Coming of Ted Cruz

He will rise again. Make no mistake. Ted Cruz is already on the comeback trail. Indeed, he was never really defeated in the first place. A freshman senator, in office for less than a year, he scheduled a news conference Wednesday evening to compete directly with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s announcement of an end to the… Read more »

Constitution Is Not a Suicide Pact

The Constitution is not a “suicide pact.” So wrote Robert Jackson in 1949. Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court, Chief-War Crimes Prosecutor at Nuremberg, Jackson may well have been among the wisest men or women to ever sit on America’s highest tribunal. His warning resonates today. For we are faced with a constitutional crisis the… Read more »

The Silent Violence of the Republican Shutdown

The Republican shutdown of the federal government has many high-profile, sympathetic, and symbolic victims — the panda cam at the National Zoo, visitors to the national parks, aging World War II veterans deprived of the opportunity to visit the monument erected to honor their valor. But the Republican shutdown is a far greater offense against… Read more »

P.T. Barnum, Joe McCarthy, and the Rise of Ted Cruz

If we can speak at all of an American collective memory, there are two archetypes which loom large in those shady mists — the huckster, and the paranoid demagogue. Ted Cruz, the junior senator from the State of Texas, who has been a member of that august deliberative body for a little less than ten… Read more »

The Thrill Is Gone

It is fair to say that the on-going story of Syria has brought to the forefront a new truth about the United States in the early twenty-first century: We have lost our thrill for war. Let’s begin by reviewing events in Syria: Beginning in late December 2012, there were repeated reports of small-scale use of… Read more »