Saturday, August 18, 2012

Recently Published Scholarship

Fb

  • Robert Sprague, Facebook Meets the NLRB: Employee Online Communications and Unfair Labor Practices, 14 U. Pa. J. bus. L. 957 (2012).
  • Christopher Smith, A Necessary Game Changer: Resolving the Legal Quagmire Surrounding Expiration of the Nonstatutory Labor Exemption in Sports, 14 U. Pa. J. Bus. L. 1191 (2012).
  • Sherry E. Clegg, Employment Discrimination Class Actions: Why Plantiffs Must Cover All Their Bases After the Supreme Court's Interpretation of FRCP 23(a)(2) in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, 44 Tex. Tech L. Rev. 1087 (2012).
  • Raymond H. Brescia, The Iqbal Effect: The Impact of New Pleading Standards in Employment and Housing Discrimination Litigation, 100 Kentucky L.J. 235 (2011-12).
  • Matthew Radler, Amending the EEOC's Disability Discrimination Regulations to Protect Employees with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, 80 George Wash. L. Rev. 1546 (2012).
  • Mark C. Weber, The Common Law of Disability Discrimination, 2012 Utah L. Rev. 429.
  • Gerri L. Plain, The Expansion of Employee Protection in Title VII Retaliation Claims, 42 Cumberland L. Rev. 549 (2011-12).

rb

August 18, 2012 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, August 17, 2012

Lurie on A Nonpartisan View of the Uncivil Wars Over Health Care Law

LurieFriend of the blog, Alvin Lurie, has a guest commentary up over at Benefits Link entitled: A Nonpartisan View of the Uncivil Wars Over Health Care Law and How They Have Affected the Three Branches of Our Government, Particularly the Self-Inflicted Wounds of the Supreme Court.

From the Introduction/Apologia:


The author has attempted in this piece to present an objective "big picture" of what he has called an "uncivil war", and to cast a spotlight on some of its chief consequences for the main instruments of our government. His interest is not to shake these key pillars of our system per se, but to show the effects of their actions on the state of our society. This is not a Democratic issue or a Republican issue, but a National one. It is not a question of whether you like Obama or not. The author asks the reader take off his or her party-tinted glasses and to consider this matter as an American, that is to say as a nonpartisan. That is asking a lot, because most people come to this issue with a political predisposition. The matter of health care for America is too important to let politics get in the way. The medical books do not list "Democratic Diabetes" or "Republican Rheumatism."

The reader is cautioned not to mistake the term "nonpartisan" for "neutral." The author has strong views on many of the subjects touched upon in the lines that follow, as will quickly become apparent. The reader may detect biases in some of the author's comments, to which the only honest response would be, in legalese, nolo contendere. But the author's biases are not grounded in political allegiance to either the Democrats, who passionately support the Affordable Care Act which their votes enabled to become what has been called the President's "signature legislative achievement" of his term of office, or the Republicans, who perhaps even more passionately have fought the law by not having cast a single vote for its enactment and who have vowed to repeal it root and branch when and if they gain the requisite votes in Congress—with or without a little help from the man then occupying the Oval Office.

It is said as this piece is written that the vote in November is now too close to call. Just as close would be a vote by the public at this time as to which branch it least respects. That is not a good place for the country to be now. Our course going forward in these difficult economic times will be difficult enough if we all pull together on the things that matter (admittedly a near impossibility in an election period). But the piece that follows has been composed in the hopes that it will supply information about adoption of the health legislation and the Supreme Court's decision upholding the law that is not readily accessible to most readers and, in so doing, thereby provide open minds with food for thought as a counterbalance to the sound bites that now drown out objective discourse on health care reform.

Read the whole thing. A very interesting take on an extremely important issue facing the United States in the coming years.

PS

August 17, 2012 in Commentary, Pension and Benefits | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Lipshaw on Demons and Deities in the Debate over the Future of Legal Education

JlipshawJeff Lipshaw (Suffollk) has a very thoughtful post at The Legal Whiteboard, cross-posted at the Legal Professon Blog on the debates surrounding the future of legal education. Here is a bit (you should read the whole thing):

One of the false dichotomies I've observed over the course of a long career in and out of academia (more out than in - twenty-six years of law firm and in-house, managing, hiring, firing, etc.) is the view that the world divides up neatly into gods and demons. [the current debate shows the] perfect storm of deification and demonization when in the face of increasingly scarce resources (see Jerry's post), (a) there's a good old-fashioned turf war, (b) in law school, (c) at a time when all of the contending protagonists and antagonists feel the warm glow of victimization and justification.

. . .

The ability to learn is what mediates the perfect storm of self-interest, advocacy, and justification. But that's a higher order process because it means thinking about why you are thinking what you are thinking.  Or, in other words, it means having a disposition in which you are at least sometimes amenable to the possibility that the way you are putting order to chaos may be affecting your conclusions. 

Underlying these observations is the recognition that we have to critically reflect on both what we have and how we think things ought to be. Just because we believe it doesn't mean we are right.

MM

August 17, 2012 in Commentary, Scholarship, Teaching | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Estreicher on Two-Year Law Programs

EstreicherSam Estreicher (NYU) has a forthcoming article that will be published in the New York University Journal of Legislation and Public Policy: "The Roosevelt-Cardozo Way: No More than Two Years of Required Law School to Sit for the Bar." [ Download Estreicher Article ].  The abstract:

This paper argues for a revision of the rules of the New York Court of Appeals to allow students to sit for the bar after two years of law school classes. This revision, reflecting what the rule had been when both Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Associate Justice Benjamin Cardozo attended Columbia Law School, would cut the costs of legal education for many students by 1/3, hence addressing in part the concern that law school debt drives down the availability of public service lawyers. Moreover, such a move would put pressure on law schools to deliver educational services more attuned to the practical needs of their students in order to secure their enrollment for the third year. This is a matter of considerable importance at a time many law schools place fewer than half of their graduates in full-time positions requiring legal training. Although the proposal does not address what law schools do or should do, reducing the law school study requirement for bar eligibility from three to two years may encourage some law schools within New York to embrace a more professional than rather purely academic orientation that should in turn lead to enhanced skills trainingf or students likely to be practising on their own or in small firms not capable of providing sustained training. A better trained solo or small-firm practitioner will better serve the legal needs of Americans of average means.

This is obviously a controversial proposal, but one that is extremely timely.  Indeed, it fits well with Marcia's recent post and the subsequent comments. It also has a history on the development of the three-year rule that was fascinating--and that I was completely unaware of. Check it out!

-JH

August 16, 2012 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Senn on Discriminatory Damages

SennCraig Senn (Loyola New Orleans) has just posted on SSRN his article (forthcoming Alabama L. Rev., Nov. 2012) Ending Discriminatory Damages. Here's the abstract:

[T]he different remedial models of our federal employment discrimination laws can (and often do) yield discriminatory damages.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, and the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) share one model: victims of intentional sex-, race-, religion-, national origin-, color-, or disability-based discrimination may recover monetary damages for lost wages (or back pay), plus “compensatory and punitive damages” subject to statutory caps ranging from $50,000 to $300,000 (depending on the number of the employer’s employees). In contrast, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) uses a different model: victims of intentional age-based discrimination may recover monetary damages for lost wages (or back pay), plus “liquidated damages” that equal, dollar-for-dollar, the lost wage amount.

While innocent in appearance, these different models create an ironic phenomenon: the “Discriminatory Damages Paradox,” whereby victims with certain federally protected characteristics can be (and often are) monetarily favored over those with other federally protected characteristics. In some Paradox situations, a prevailing Title VII or ADA plaintiff can recover substantially more monetary damages than an otherwise identically situated ADEA plaintiff. In other Paradox situations, the opposite is true.

This article proposes a “Uniform Title VII/ADA-Based Damages Model” to solve this Discriminatory Damages Paradox. This uniform model is warranted for three reasons: (1) it embraces Congress’s philosophy of promoting reasonably comparable and consistent (rather than unfairly disparate) monetary damages for victims of intent-based discrimination, as evidenced by the Civil Rights Act of 1991; (2) it better serves the ADEA’s purposes and interests by (a) more effectively promoting its remedial purpose of deterrence and (b) expanding its remedial purposes to include harm compensation and claim incentive; and (3) it serves to fully advance federal employment discrimination policy.

rb

August 15, 2012 in Employment Discrimination | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Zelinsky on Pension Underfunding via Interest Rate Assumptions

ZelEd Zelinsky (Cardozo) has just posted on OUP Blog Public Pensions’ unrealistic rate of return assumptions.  Here's the take-away:

The problem of underfunded public pensions cannot be solved until it is acknowledged. Unrealistically high rate of return assumptions, like those embraced by CalPERS and other public retirement plans, mask the magnitude of the underfunding of public pensions. The refusal to confront the problem of pension underfunding may help state officials to get re-elected by kicking the proverbial can past the next election, but the problem cannot be ignored indefinitely. The longer the problem of underfunded state pensions is ignored, the more difficult will be the ultimate adjustments required of state taxpayers and state employees.

Sure wish my 401k was earning even half of what these pension plans are assuming as rates of return.

rb

August 15, 2012 in Pension and Benefits | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Coercion at the Ballot Box

BallotDennis Nolan flags for us In re United Public Workers, FEC, No. MUR 6344, 8/7/12, discussed in yesterday's Daily Labor Report.  A union encouraged its employees to support a Democratic candidate for Congress.  The union then fired two employees, purportedly for failing to support that candidate.  The employees then brought a complaint to the Federal Election Commission alleging violations of campaign finance laws.  The FEC deadlocked, with the three Democrats voting against the union and the three Republicans voting for the union.  A statement issued in the case by the FEC Democrats stated that although Citizens United allows corporations and unions to spend money to influence campaigns, there is no indication that the Court “intended to expand the rights of corporations and unions at the expense of their employees' long-standing rights to be free from coercion and to express or decline to express their own political views.”  The FEC Republicans did not issue a statement in the case.

rb

August 15, 2012 in Labor Law | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)

Comment Glitch

My post last Friday promoted a lot of comments, and I appreciate very much all of the people who took the time to read the post and think about the points in it. So many readers commented that the blog won't display them all, and we haven't been able to get that glitch fixed yet. So, I'm reproducing the ones that don't show in the original post here. We lost any formatting you might have done, but I'm guessing at what it would have been. To comment on these or the prior post or comments, comment to this post.

Jeff Hirsch said:

Here' the most thorough study I'm aware of on the scholarship-teaching connection. Quick take, there's little to no connection between the two. http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=913421

 

Brad said:

The problem with studies that use existing tenured faculty is that all such faculty (except perhaps the very oldest) were hired under the status quo criteria. Among such a pool, both scholarly output and teaching output are largely correlated with continued enthusiasm and engagement post tenure. You are essentially simply comparing the dynamic members of the faculty with those who have checked out. To properly study the question the comparison group would need to have comparably compensated and supported teachers who were hired, tenured and evaluated based on thier accomplishments in the classroom. If this latter group underperformed in the classroom as compared to those hired under the status quo then those advocating an inextricable link between scholarship and teaching would have powerful data. I don't expect any such experiment to take place, because it would be too high risk to the dominant ruling class.

Orin Kerr said:

Nancy Leong writes: Howard mentions that he has seen a correlation between good teaching and good scholarship. I tend to agree. Of course this sort of thing is very difficult to measure empirically, but I am familiar with data from two different institutions (not necessarily my better evaluations. Of course there are all kinds of limitations to these data, but I mention them as one item in a suite of measurements that own) that found a strong correlation between scholarly output and student evaluation scores -- that is, more productive scholars tend to get schools might consider examining internally as we think through the important issues that Marcia has raised.

FWIW, an empirical study by Prof. Ben Barton found no correlation between teaching and scholarship: This empirical study attempts to answer an age-old debate in legal academia: whether scholarly productivity helps or hurts teaching. The study is of an unprecedented size and scope. It covers every tenured or tenure-track faculty member at 19 American law schools, a total of 623 professors. The study gathers four years of teaching evaluation data (calendar years 2000-03) and correlates these data against five different measures of research productivity/scholarly influence. The results are counter-intuitive: there is either no correlation or a slight positive correlation between teaching effectiveness and any of the five measures of research productivity. http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=913421

 

David Yamada said:

I really appreciate this exchange. I'm going to offer a few points as an omnibus response and then be quiet.

1. THE ATM ISSUE/ELITE SCHOOLS -- Let's get back to the important question of universities using their law schools as ATMs. I think it's an arguably defensible practice at the elite law schools, whose graduates are still likely to command high salaries upon graduation, even if their options aren't as seemingly endless as during the heyday.

2. THE ATM ISSUE/REGIONAL SCHOOLS -- But the ATM practice is downright wrong, even immoral, at regional law schools where even the successful job seekers are getting law firm job offers in the $30-60k ranges. I'm going to guess that many regional universities that drain their law schools dry are run by high-ranking administrators and boards who have been allergic to fundraising work for a long, long time.

3. IF YOU CUT THE SUBSIDY -- Let's say a regional law school is being taxed 20 percent of its tuition revenue by the parent institution, a middlin' figure. If you cut the figure to "mere" tithing (10 percent), you could cut law school tuition by 10 percent without skipping a beat. At a law school charging, say, $35,000 tuition, that 10 percent cut would result in roughly $10,000 less in student loans per student over a 3 year program. In other words: Why aren't we talking more about the ATM issue as part of the financial crisis in legal education?

4. FACULTY PAY -- Likewise, professors at regional schools shouldn't expect to earn what colleagues at elite institutions pull down. In the competition for candidates with elite credentials, some regional schools are breaking the bank and the morale of current faculty to attract candidates who "just missed the cut" at Top 15 Law, and I think it's a huge mistake. That said, the now-standard bashing of the "six-figure salaries" is a bit overdone, at least when it comes to folks 10-20-30 years out of law school. These days, a low six-figure salary is not unusual for lawyers with a decent chunk of seniority, especially in expensive metro areas. At my school, the median salary for a full professor is just above the starting salary for a BigLaw associate, although there are HUGE variations that I won't get into lest I start throwing things.

5. SCHOLARSHIP AT REGIONAL SCHOOLS -- We should recognize that regional schools cannot copy the compensation systems and work expectations of elite schools without some monstrous tradeoffs at the expense of their students. That said, all law schools are graduate-level professional schools, and there should be room for professors at those schools to contribute to the world's knowledge through scholarly work. Modest research stipends aren't the reasons for the financial crisis in legal education. I speak as someone who entered the academy attracted by the opportunity to teach, originally regarding scholarship as something of a chore in order to secure my job. Now, I have a strong appreciation for both, as well as for pro bono service. It's about balance, not all or nothing. Good teaching and good scholarship are not mutually exclusive, and in fact can be complementary. David Yamada Suffolk

 Mitchell Rubinstein said:

This is cross posted from Ryan's website. Ryan: This is a great idea. I have two comments. First, I would not use data from Rate My Teachers. Rather, I would try to get data from the law schools themselves. A much better comparison would be to compare adjunct prof rankings to FT prof rankings. I think you know my thoughts. I cup of coffee says that the adjuncts will win every time at every law school. I am going to cross post this on Workplace Prof Blog. Mitch

 cas127 said:

"troubles me too because it seems to already presume that some things may not have value unless they are easily commodified." I suggest that the Professor's students place this common self-serving sentiment on the tuition checks that they write to the Professor's law school - at 10% of the demanded tuition price. Posturing profs like these (probably a majority of the profession) only talk about "priceless" things when they are ones cashing (not writing) the checks.

Alex Reinert said:

I think it is pretty difficult to make the kind of connection between teaching effectiveness and faculty experience that people are looking for (on either side of this debate). Mostly that is because I do not think student evaluations are a very good indicator of teacher quality -- they might be a good indicator of some elements of teacher quality, but if so I think they are very limited. More troubling to me is comments like the most recent from AnonProf, which seems to equate anti-intellectualism with a concern with training in the practice of law. Maybe AnonProf did not mean to imply that training students how to practice is somehow less intellectual than training students how to engage with complex theoretical concepts. But to the extent that AnonProf did, I think it is an unfortunate byproduct of the general lack of practice experience that most professors have. Basically, everyone wants to justify their own bona fides, so practical experience must somehow be marginalized as anti-intellectual by those who are steeped in high theory, and theory must somehow be marginalized as irrelevant by those who have principally practiced. It all seems like a false choice to me. I happen to think it is embarrassing that my six or so years of practicing law (with some continued forays after joining the academy) is considered to be a lot by some law professors. And I think that for some classes (Civil Procedure comes to mind), it is valuable to have at least some professors who actually have stood up in court, drafted pleadings, etc. That said, practice experience is not essential to being an effective professor, even in a course like Civ Pro -- it can help, but it is far from sufficient or necessary. Similarly, it is important to have professors who are well-grounded in theory, especially when they care about connecting that theory to decisions that lawyers make every day. But theory is not so mystifying that one is disabled from engaging in it by virtue of having stepped into a courtroom one too many times. So it would be nice if we could stop the sniping -- I get that many law schools have tended to favor the theoretical frame over the practical one, but I don't believe that reversing that trend will solve our problems. I think what we are generally lacking in law schools, regardless of who is teaching our students, is good measures of how well we are communicating to our students, and how much what we do in class is of assistance to them as they prepare for their careers (clinical teaching may be an exception, at least when it is done within the difficult pedagogical framework that most good clinicians aspire to). I don't think that makes me an anti-intellectual; I want to be an effective teacher, and if we think that we can be effective without caring about what our students are going to do after they graduate, we are in a sad place. As for medical scholarship, AnonProf, it has always been my perception that the gap between theory and practice in medical schools is much narrower than it has been in law schools. My understanding, limited as it may be, is that the professors at medical schools are both experienced practitioners and researchers -- and medical research is often informed by practical experience at least as much as abstract theory.

 

Biffer said:

Respectfully, I think the biggest problem with the quality of legal education stems not from the differing background of the professors but from the mere quantity of professors. Simply put - there are too many law schools and too many professors. Inevitably bad professors are hired simply to have a body to put in front of students to charge them admission. There's much talk about concern for the students getting a proper education and beginning a prosperous legal career, but the actions point instead to concern truly lying on the school being prosperous. And why not? The old wisdom is that, when it rains, you line up buckets, and right now it's raining law school application, so schools are lining up professors to teach them. Which, of course, is a disservice to the student. A shrinking market, reduced wages, lengthier partner tracks, "alternative tracks" that don't lead to partner at all, and more and more schools opening with more and more sections of students. The questions you should ask yourselves aren't "what value does my work add to society" or "what value do law professors as a whole add," but "what value will my students add, what value does my school add, and what value will my students receive?" Odds are the profession would be stronger if most of the schools represented in this thread went belly-up.

John said:

"With research emphasized, law profs are people who were at the top of their class from a good law school and presumably could have become $800/hour attorneys but chose not to." Lol this is the biggest myth around. Yeah you probably could have gone into biglaw and worked your way up to $800 per hour IF you were willing to work the hours, deal with the stress of a supervising attorney, and the demands of the clients. Most attorneys leave biglaw within the first five years for these reasons. The argument that your law professor salary is meager in comparison to that biglaw partnership you could have had is ridiculous. Becoming a biglaw partner takes a ton of work and a lot of luck. And even if you "win" the big money you still lose by having a miserable life. When TTT's like SLU shut down because they can't fill their 1L classes, we'll see how wonderful the legal job options are for experienced law professors. SLU increased tuition from $27,250 (04-05) to $36,440 (12-13). That's a 33 percent increase in eight years. You should be ashamed of yourself.

BoredJD said:

"Law school isn't vocational training. Nazi Germany's monstrous legal system also had its share of excellent practitioners. In law school, we teach social values, norms, and a host of other things unassociated with pragmatic exclusivity." Do you also teach them the law? Specifically, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godwin%27s_law "I'm always curious by these anti-intellectual arguments about law professors. I wonder whether the folks who hold them would also do away with philosophy, classics, English, and other liberal arts programs that are not pragmatic and are areas few people get jobs in. After all, most undergrads will in the end get non-theoretical jobs. Doing away with theory in law school would have the same harmful effect on students and society as a whole as doing away with it in undergrad would have. I'm just glad the vocational training mentality hasn't taken root; otherwise, the result would be shallow lawyers. This is particularly true of students who haven't had the benefit of a liberal arts education, like engineers, who can be excellent lawyers but need to learn analysis and rigor that scholars can provide."

I'm a recent law school graduate of a top school and can tell you where my newfound anti-intellectualism comes from. Before law school, I never gave much thought to the anti-intellectual opinions that pervaded my family and community. I thought cries of "limousine liberalism" were overblown and baseless. Then I went to law school. And I saw professors speak in one breath about "social justice" and progressive ideology and in the next breath raise my tuition by 1-2K per year in a deep recession and tell me "you signed the contract" and "can just drop out if you don't like it." I saw law schools engage in conduct that is arguably fraud and defend their behavior with "caveat emptor." Standards of conduct professors would decry when done by banks or corporations, such as counting on people to make irrational decisions on incomplete information, were ignored or accepted when done by their own institutions for their own pecuniary benefit. This is why people don't like you, not because they don't share your values. It is because when push comes to shove, you are no better than anyone else. This would have been amusing, but for the fact that I took out about 110K in debt and am about to spend the next 30 years of my life in a profession that had taken a MASSIVE reputation and prestige hit because of your actions. Just today I talked to a recent BA holder working at a coffee shop who told me she would never go to law school because it costs too much and she personally knows graduates with high debt and no job. The quoted argument is an especially frustrating one. Rather than engage in the necessary value analysis from the perspective of the student, you would suggest that because theory adds SOME discernible value, that justifies whatever you charge. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Most people go to law school to get jobs as lawyers. That gives you some freedom to teach theory, for as long as people are getting jobs as lawyers, you can pretty much teach whatever you want. But the flip side to this is that when the jobs disappear, or when the cost becomes to high to justify the expected starting salary, students will abandon the effort. This discussion itself is part of the problem. The simple fact is that there are too many law students and they have too much debt. If law schools graduated fewer law students, and the decision to go to law school was not financially ruinous, you could stand on your head and read 50 Shades of Grey all day for all I care. You should be focusing your efforts on how you would structure a law school with 50% of current enrollment that charges around 15K per year.

MM

August 15, 2012 in Commentary, Faculty News, Scholarship, Teaching | Permalink | Comments (15) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Recently Published Scholarship

Utah

  • Thomas V. Burch, Regulating Mandatory Arbitration, 2011 Utah L. Rev. 1309.
  • Deborah M. Weiss, The Imposibilty of Agnostic Discrimination Law, 2011 Utah L. Rev. 1677.

rb

August 14, 2012 in Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Sachs on Corporate Shareholders Deserve Equal Rights on Campaign Finance

SachsBen Sachs (Harvard) has an interesting and important commentary up at The Atlantic Monthly's Wire entitled: Corporate Shareholders Deserve Equal Rights on Campaign Finance.

A taste:

As the 2012 election season rolls forward, campaign cash is taking center stage. And when it comes to money in politics, the debate seems inevitably to end in a fight over the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. Many believe Citizens United unleashed new torrents of spending. Others think the decision merely nudged along an escalation that was occurring anyway. But we’re all missing a central feature of Citizens United that will have a major impact on the balance of political power in the country, in 2012 and beyond.

Here’s the issue. The conventional wisdom is that Citizens United treats political spending by corporations and labor unions equally. And, as a formal matter, the case does free both groups to spend their general treasuries on politics. But the freedom that the Court’s Citizens United decision gives to corporations and unions alike, other cases take away from unions alone. The result? A legally constructed advantage for corporations over unions when it comes to politics . . . .

What should be done? Many approaches are possible, but one promising strategy – and one that would have the virtue of treating these political spenders equally – would be to take the opt-out right currently available to employees and offer it to shareholders. It would work like this: When you invest in a corporation — either directly or through a mutual fund — you would be given the right to object to spending corporate assets on politics. The firm would then figure out what percentage of its overall expenditures go to politics, and return to you your pro-rata share of these expenditures (depending on how many shares you own) in the form of a dividend. Since unions have faced a similar obligation for decades now – they have to divide all of their expenditures into political and non-political, and then reduce the dues payment of objectors accordingly – we could look to the union example as a source of guidance when crafting and administering the corporate rule. (If the Supreme Court were ever to require private sector unions to secure employee opt in to union political spending — as an aggressive extension of the Knox decision might entail – then corporations should similarly be required to secure shareholder opt in to corporate political spending.)

With the recent decision in Knox v. SEIU, many (including Matt Bodie on this blog) have weighed in on the difficulties union have in keeping up with the political spending of corporations.  Ben has been front and center in this debate, both in law reviews and other commentaries, and makes a persuasive argument that corporate shareholders should have similar opt-out rights as dissenting union members.

Read the whole thing. This is going to be an on-going debate for many months and years to come and an essential issue if unions are to flourish in the American public and private-sector.

PS

August 13, 2012 in Commentary, Workplace Trends | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Duhl on Over the Borderline — A Review of Margaret Price’s Mad at School: Rhetorics of Mental Disability in Academic Life

Duhl-GregoryWith all the serious and timely discussion of job security in the law professiorate and what-not, it appears particularly appropriate to bring to blog readers' attention this essay by Greg Duhl (William Mitchell):  Over the Borderline — A Review of Margaret Price’s Mad at School: Rhetorics of Mental Disability in Academic Life.  

It is part book review, part narrative, and part analytical. Here is the abstract:

This essay is about “madness” in higher education. In Mad at School: Rhetorics of Mental Disability in Academic Life, Professor Price analyzes the rhetoric and discourse surrounding mental disabilities in academia. In this essay, I place Price’s work in a legal context, suggesting why the Americans with Disabilities Act fails those with mental illness and why reform is needed to protect them. My own narrative as a law professor with Borderline Personality Disorder frames my critique. Narratives of mental illness are important because they help connect those who are often stigmatized and isolated due to mental illness and provide a framework for them to overcome barriers limiting their equal participation in academic life.

I happy to help Greg to spread the message on the importance of integrating faculty with mental illness. I believe this should be of interest to many readers of this blog and hopefully will spur a serious discussion on this topic.

PS

I have a favor. Would you possibly post a link to my lastest essay on your blog? It is part book review, part narrative, and part analytical. I would like to spread the message on the importance of integrating faculty with mental illness. I believe it would be of interest to readers of your blog.I have a favor. Would you possibly post a link to my lastest essay on your blog? It is part book review, part narrative, and part analytical. I would like to spread the message on the importance of integrating faculty with mental illness. I believe it would be of interest to readers of your blog.

August 13, 2012 in Disability, Scholarship, Worklife Issues | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

AALS Call for Papers

AALSA call for papers for this year's AALS conference:

The Executive Committee of the AALS Labor Relations and Employment Law Section is seeking abstracts for papers to be presented at the AALS Annual Meeting in New Orleans, La.   The section program is entitled: Workers After the Ascendancy of Global Financial Capital.  The papers will be published in the Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal, a multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal published by ITT Chicago-Kent College of Law.

The panel will focus on the impact of global financial capital on American labor markets, and consider the role of international organizations and transnational norms in addressing these dynamics.  Topics from leading scholars already committed to present  include community syndicalism and global supply chains, the effects on workers of restructuring within international financing, and the issues raised by international labor standards and multilateral trade agreements.  We are seeking one additional speaker who will present on a relevant topic, and we are particularly interested in speakers with diverse views and voices.  

The Labor Relations and Employment Law Section program takes place on Friday, January 4, 2013 from 2 to 5PM. The program is co-sponsored by the Section on Comparative Law.

Please submit an abstract of no more than 400 words and a resume to Section Chair Jeff Hirsch at [email protected] by September 4, 2012.  Authors of selected abstracts will be notified before October 1, 2012.

 -JH

August 12, 2012 in Conferences & Colloquia | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)