masthead

Featured Acquisitions - January 2013

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Oral Arguments and Coalition Formation on the U.S. Supreme Court: A Deliberate Dialogue by Ryan C. Black, Timothy R. Johnson and Justin Wedeking
Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2012
KF8742 .B57 2012 Balcony

The U.S. Supreme Court, with its controlled, highly institutionalized decision-making practices, provides an ideal environment for studying coalition formation. The process begins during the oral argument stage, which provides the justices with their first opportunity to hear one another's attitudes and concerns specific to a case. This information gathering allows them eventually to form a coalition.
In order to uncover the workings of this process, the authors analyze oral argument transcripts from every case decided from 1998 through 2007 as well as the complete collection of notes kept during oral arguments by Justice Lewis F. Powell and Justice Harry A. Blackmun. Both justices clearly monitored their fellow justices' participation in the discussion and used their observations to craft opinions their colleagues would be likely to support. This study represents a major step forward in the understanding of coalition formation, which is a crucial aspect of many areas of political debate and decision making.


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Law’s Evolution and Human Understanding by Laurence Claus
Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2012
K237 .C57 2012 Balcony

When should we follow the law? How can we know what law's words mean? What is law? Law's Evolution and Human Understanding presents fresh and surprising answers to these questions. In an account alive with the stories of our shared human history, Laurence Claus explains why we should discard the old idea that legal rules tell us what to do, and instead see law as a system of sayings that evolves among humans to help us better understand each other.
When driving on public roads, when buying and selling, and in countless other aspects of our work and play, we depend on law to let us know what other people are likely to do and to expect of us. Through fast-paced pages of anecdote and argument, Law's Evolution and Human Understanding explains the revolutionary consequences of seeing law as truly what Oliver Wendell Holmes called it: systematized prediction. The book reveals how this vision of law can transform our thinking about the way we make moral decisions, about the way we read law, and about many other ways that law affects our lives.


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Bailout: An Inside Account of How Washington Abandoned Main Street While Rescuing Wall Street by Neil Barofsky
New York: Free Press, 2012
HG181 .B32 2012 Basement

The further we dug into the way TARP was being administered, the more obvious it became that Treasury applied a consistent double standard. In the late fall of 2009, as I began receiving the results of two of our most important audits, the contradiction couldn't have been more glaring. When providing the largest financial institutions with bailout money, Treasury made almost no effort to hold them accountable, and the bounteous terms delivered by the government seemed to border on being corrupt. For those institutions, no effort was spared, with government officials often defending their generosity by kneeling at the altar of the "sanctity of contracts." Meanwhile, an entirely different set of rules applied for homeowners and businesses that were most assuredly small enough to fail.


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The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek Sued Their Bosses and Changed the Workplace by Lynn Povich
New York: Public Affairs, 2012
HD6060.5.U5 P65 2012 Basement

On March 16, 1970, the day Newsweek published a cover story on the fledgling feminist movement entitled 'Women in Revolt,' forty-six Newsweek women charged the magazine with discrimination in hiring and promotion. It was the first female class action lawsuit - - the first by women journalists - - and it inspired other women in the media to quickly follow suit.
Lynn Povich was one of the ringleaders. In The Good Girls Revolt, she evocatively tells the story of this dramatic turning point through the lives of several participants. With warmth, humor, and perspective, she shows how personal experiences and cultural shifts led a group of well-mannered, largely apolitical women, raised in the 1940s and 1950s, to challenge their bosses - - and what happened after they did. For many, filing the suit was a radicalizing act that empowered them to 'find themselves' and fight back. Others lost their way amid opportunities, pressures, discouragements, and hostilities they weren't prepared to navigate.
The Good Girls Revolt also explores why changes in the law didn't solve everything. Through the lives of young female journalists at Newsweek today, Lynn Povich shows what has - - and hasn't - - changed in the workplace.


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Kids for Cash: Two Judges, Thousands of Children, and a $2.8 Million Kickback Scheme by William Ecenbarger
New York : New Press ; [New York] : Distributed by Perseus Distribution, c2012
HV9105.P22 E34 2012 Basement

Kids for Cash reveals the twisted and haunting realities of juvenile justice in America today. This gripping investigation follows the Pennsylvania case in which judges took cash payments for sending children to a privatised juvenile detention facility. In a shocking case that made international news, two judges were convicted of accepting millions of dollars in bribes by the owners of juvenile detention centres. William Ecenbarger, a Pulitzer Prize winning investigative journalist, now presents the first book-length account of the scandal.


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Human Dignity, Human Rights, and Responsibility: The New Language of Global Bioethics and Biolaw by Yechiel Michael Barilan
Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2012
BJ1533.R42 B37 2012 Basement

"Human dignity" has been enshrined in international agreements and national constitutions as a fundamental human right. The World Medical Association calls on physicians to respect human dignity and to discharge their duties with dignity. And yet human dignity is a term--like love, hope, and justice--that is intuitively grasped but never clearly defined. Some ethicists and bioethicists dismiss it; other thinkers point to its use in the service of particular ideologies. In this book, Michael Barilan offers an urgently needed, nonideological, and thorough conceptual clarification of human dignity and human rights, relating these ideas to current issues in ethics, law, and bioethics. Combining social history, history of ideas, moral theology, applied ethics, and political theory, Barilan tells the story of human dignity as a background moral ethos to human rights. After setting the problem in its scholarly context, he offers a hermeneutics of the formative texts on Imago Dei; provides a philosophical explication of the value of human dignity and of vulnerability; presents a comprehensive theory of human rights from a natural, humanist perspective; explores issues of moral status; and examines the value of responsibility as a link between virtue ethics and human dignity and rights. Barilan accompanies his theoretical claim with numerous practical illustrations, linking his theory to such issues in bioethics as end-of-life care, cloning, abortion, torture, treatment of the mentally incapacitated, the right to health care, the human organ market, disability and notions of difference, and privacy, highlighting many relevant legal aspects in constitutional and humanitarian law.


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The Naked Constitution: What the Founders Said and Why It Still Matters by Adam Freedman
New York: Broadside Books, 2012
KF4550 .F7 2012 Balcony

In the spirit of Glenn Beck’s Original Argument comes a lively manifesto on the need to recover the original meaning of the Constitution.
From law school classrooms to the halls of Congress, America’s elites have come to regard the Constitution as a mere decorative parchment to be kept under glass at the National Archives. In The Naked Constitution, conservative legal scholar Adam Freedman defends the controversial doctrine of originalism as the only way to restore the Founding Fathers’ vision of American liberty. Freedman argues that the fashionable Living Constitution theory has been used by judges and politicians since the Progressive Era of the early 1900s to centralize power in Washington and to threaten individual freedom.
The Naked Constitution explains the fundamental themes animating America’s founding charter: limited government, federalism, separation of powers, and individual liberty. Freedman explores the nature of each of the three branches of government as well as the key individual rights enshrined in the Constitution to show how original meaning can help answer the most pressing questions facing America today: Can the president invade another country without the approval of Congress? Can he assassinate or spy on American citizens in the name of fighting terror? Do corporations have the same free speech rights as individuals? Can the federal government coerce states to adopt particular policies, or force individuals to buy insurance? Ultimately, Freedman calls for a new constitutional convention that will free the nation from capricious courts and idiosyncratic judges, and limit the growth of government for decades to come.


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Statutory and Common Law Interpretation by Kent Greenawalt
Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2013
K231 .G74 2013 Balcony

As Kent Greenwalt's second volume on aspects of legal interpretation, this book analyzes statutory and common law interpretation and compares the two. In respect to statutory interpretation, it first asks whether judges are "faithful agents" of the legislature or "independent cooperative partners." It concludes that the obvious answer is that neither simple categorization really fits - that the function of judges involves a combination of roles. The next issue addressed is whether the intent of those in authority matters for interpreting the kinds of instructions contained in statutes. At the general level, the answer is "yes." This answer follows even if one thinks interpretation should concentrate on the understanding of readers, because readers themselves would treat intentions as part of the relevant context of the language of statutes. It would take some special reasons, such as constitutional structure or unreliability, to discount actual intents of legislators and use of legislative history. The book argues that none of these special reasons are convincing. On the question whether judges should focus on the language of specific provision or overall purpose, both are relevant, and purpose should become more important as time passes. In an analysis of various other features of statutory interpretation, the book claims that presidential signing statements should not have weight, that subsequent legislative actions short of new statutes should only occasionally carry importance, that "canons of interpretation," such as the rule of lenity, can provide some, limited, guidance, and that there are special reasons for courts to adhere to precedents in statutory cases, but these should not yield any absolute rule. A chapter on administrative interpretation of statutes claims that the standards agencies apply should differ to a degree from those of courts and that judicial deference to those interpretations is ordinarily warranted. The book's second part, on common law interpretation, considers the force of precedents, resisting any simple dichotomy between holding and dictum. It also defends the use of reasoning by analogy, not only in the initial stages thinking about a problem, but also in respect to some final justifications for decisions. An examination of the place of rules, principles, and policies argues that all three are relevant in common law interpretation; and shows that common law interpretation is not reducible to any formula. A final chapter compares statutory and common law interpretation, similarities and differences, how each can affect the other, and the significance of having a legal system in which they both play prominent roles.


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Too Much Free Speech? by Randall P. Bezanson
Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2012
KF4772 .B49 2012 Balcony

Randall P. Bezanson takes up an essential and timely inquiry into the Constitutional limits of the Supreme Court's power to create, interpret, and enforce one of the essential rights of American citizens. Analyzing contemporary Supreme Court decisions from the past fifteen years, Bezanson argues that judicial interpretations have fundamentally and drastically expanded the meaning and understanding of "speech." Bezanson focuses on judgments such as the much-discussed Citizens United case, which granted the full measure of constitutional protection to speech by corporations, and the Doe vs. Reed case in Washington state, which recognized the signing of petitions and voting in elections as acts of free speech. In each case study, he questions whether the meaning of speech has been expanded too far and critically assesses the Supreme Court's methodology in reaching and explaining its expansive conclusions. Randall P. Bezanson is the David H. Vernon Professor of Law at the University of Iowa and the author of Art and Freedom of Speech, How Free Can Religion Be? and How Free Can the Press Be?


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The Supreme Court and the Fourth Amendment’s Exclusionary Rule by Tracey Maclin
New York: Oxford University Press, 2013
KF9662 .M25 2013 Balcony

The application of the Fourth Amendment's Exclusionary Rule has divided the Justices of the Supreme Court for nearly a century. As the legal remedy for when police violate the Fourth Amendment rights of a person and discover criminal evidence through illegal search and seizure, it is the most frequently litigated constitutional issue in United State's courts. Tracey Maclin's The Supreme Court and the Fourth Amendment's Exclusionary Rule traces the rise and fall of the exclusionary rule using insight and behind-the-scenes access into the Court's thinking.
Based on original archival research into the private papers of retired Justices, Professor Maclin's analysis clarifies the motivations and thoughts that explain the Court's exclusionary rule jurisprudence. He includes a comprehensive scholarly and objective discussion of the reasoning behind the Court decisions, and demonstrates that like other constitutional doctrines, the exclusionary rule is a political mechanism that expands and contracts as the times and Justices change. Ultimately, this book will help readers understand how constitutional law is constructed by judges with diverse political perspectives.