Business Insider—December 1
The best books of 2019 on rethinking capitalism and improving economy
'The Code of Capital' by Katharina Pistor
The discussion around the rise of inequality to historic levels in the US often includes the financialization of the economy and the reign of neoliberal ideas, but according to Katharina Pistor, professor and director of the Columbia Law School's Center on Global Legal Transformation, we don't spend enough time considering the legal aspect of capitalism.
The Dallas Morning News—December 1
How the death penalty fails Texas
Columbia University Law School professor James Liebman’s book, The Wrong Carlos, details the reasons why the murderer of a convenience store clerk was almost certainly Carlos Hernandez, not the executed Carlos DeLuna. Liebman aptly subtitled the book “Anatomy of a Wrongful Execution.”
The American Scholar—December 2
This Man Should Not Be Executed
In “A Broken System,” a research paper published in 2000, James Liebman of Columbia Law School and his coauthors reported that “courts found serious, reversible error in nearly 7 of every 10 of the thousands of capital sentences that were fully reviewed” between 1973 and the year before AEDPA became law.
NYPD Flies Another 'Thin Blue Line' Flag, As Mayor Dodges Questions On Controversial Symbol
Jeffrey Fagan, a law professor at Columbia University who specializes in police accountability and criminal law, said he was not surprised by Mayor de Blasio's silence on the flags. "The Mayor is still the lapdog of the police unions," said Fagan. "It's disgraceful, and insulting to the people who voted for him."
New York crime did drop when 2020 hopeful Michael Bloomberg was mayor, but he claims too much credit
"Was the slope any steeper during Bloomberg than in the preceding decade? Not at all," said Jeffrey Fagan, a professor of law and a professor of epidemiology at Columbia University.
RCRWireless News—December 2
The Sunday Brief: The master switch, 10 years later
This week’s Brief is a review and summary of one of the many books I have been reading (thanks to your suggestions) on the history of technology – Tim Wu’s The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires. It was written in 2010 and, in paper edition, is a 376-page chronicle of that Wu calls “The Cycle.” The book . . . is definitely a must read for anyone who wants an historical perspective on technology in the 20th century.
Argument analysis: Justices debate copyrightability of state legislative annotations
By Ronald Mann
The Supreme Court brought a surprising amount of attention to the second argument yesterday morning, in Georgia v Public.Resource.Org.
Financial Times—December 3
Best books of 2019: Economics
The Code of Capital: How the Law Creates Wealth and Inequality, by Katharina Pistor, Princeton University Press
“Capital rules, and it rules by law,” argues Pistor in this fascinating book. “It owes its capacity to create wealth to the modules of a legal code that is backed by state power; and its resilience in times of crisis can be attributed to a combination of legal asset-shielding devices and the state’s willingness to extend a helping hand to capital to preserve not only capitalism but social stability, and by implication, the state itself.” The law has created capitalism — and so lawyers rule.
Legal Week—December 3
Global Warming Gives Rise to Growth in Climate Law Practices at Global Law Firms
In California, which has relatively strict environmental regulations, many lawyers represent industrial, energy and real estate development companies and the financial institutions that finance them, said Michael Gerrard, director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School.
Religion News Service—December 3
Melissa Rogers envisions a better way forward for faith in the public square
Indeed, a report by Columbia Law School’s Law, Rights and Religion Project last month detailed religious liberty advocacy by progressive movements, rebutting what it called “widespread misconceptions” that only conservative Christians defend the right to religious liberty.
How to have a true hobby, not a side hustle
As Tim Wu wrote for the New York Times, “We’re afraid of being bad at [hobbies]. Or rather, we are intimidated by the expectation — itself a hallmark of our intensely public, performative age — that we must actually be skilled at what we do in our free time.”
Yahoo Finance—December 3
Why the 2010s were a decade divided
“When people criticize [globalism] they’re throwing that in the face of evidence,” says Jagdish Bhagwati, professor at Columbia University and senior fellow in international economics at the Council on Foreign Relations. “They attribute inequality to liberalization, completely ignoring the fact that inequality would’ve been worse if not liberalized.”
Justices call for more briefing in dispute about Oklahoma prosecutions of Native Americans
By Ronald Mann
This afternoon the justices asked for briefing from the parties, the United States as amicus curiae supporting Oklahoma, and the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, as amicus curiae supporting Murphy, on two questions that seem to suggest a search for a new way to resolve the controversy.
Washington Monthly—December 4
How Red States Are Steamrolling Blue Cities
Richard Briffault, a Columbia law professor and expert on local governance, identifies two areas of potential political consensus: the idea that localism has democratic merits but should not be unlimited, and that strong cooperation between different levels of government produces better outcomes.
Beyoncé, Michelle Obama, Shonda Rhimes And More Black Women That Defined The Decade
“Although Black women are routinely killed, raped, and beaten by the police, their experiences are rarely foregrounded in popular understandings of police brutality,” says Kimberle Crenshaw, director of Columbia Law School’s Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies. “Yet, inclusion of Black women’s experiences in social movements, media narratives, and policy demands around policing and police brutality is critical to effectively combating racialized state violence for Black communities and other communities of color.”
The Fayetteville Observer—December 5
Debra Figgins: Cumberland County schools must address racial disparities in discipline
Our resolution reads as follows: . . . Whereas a report from Columbia Law School’s Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies found that black girls are six times more likely to be suspended than white girls, while black boys are three times more likely to be suspended than white boys . . .
Foreign Policy—December 5
Is Canada Violating Its Constitution by Sending Refugees Back to the United States?
“The administration is making systematic efforts to end asylum in the United States,” said Elora Mukherjee, the director of Columbia Law School’s Immigrants’ Rights Clinic.
House Passes 1st Explicit Ban On Insider Trading
Columbia Law School professor Jack Coffee Jr. said that change eliminated "the key element," which was meant to clarify the convoluted state of the law. "I think that it is a major concession to the Republicans who were demanding it," Coffee told Law360 on Thursday. "It makes it less of a reform bill."
Los Angeles Times—December 5
Supreme Court confronts homeless crisis and whether there’s a right to sleep on the sidewalk
Maria Foscarinis, executive director of the National Law Center on Homeless & Poverty, said the ruling “rests on the fundamental principle that you can’t criminalize people because of their status. In this case, it is the status of being human with no place to live.” She said she hoped the ruling would prevent cities “from going down of path of criminalization” when dealing with homelessness.
[Note: Foscarinis is an alumna and a lecturer at Columbia Law. Amid news concerning criminal laws directed at the homeless, Foscarinis was also quoted in the American Bar Association’s Human Rights Magazine, Bloomberg News, CityLab, Mic, The New York Times, NPR, Patch, the Santa Monica Mirror, United Press International, USA Today, and Vice News.]
Brianna Baker’s Work To Push Back Against Push Out
“My high school Freedom Fighters Social Justice Program partnered with Columbia Law School, here they had the opportunity to take a Racial Justice Advocacy Workshop weekly with law students led by Professor Katherine Franke,” said Baker.
Wyden, Merkley press HUD to address radon in public housing after Oregonian investigation
Emily Benfer, a professor at Columbia Law School who specializes in health justice, said HUD’s renewed encouragement to housing authorities was wholly inadequate. “HUD’s reminder to public housing authorities about the risk of radon exposure is not only underwhelming and unacceptable, it’s also decades late,” Benfer said in an interview. “HUD has been well aware of the risks of radon.”
[Note: Benfer is a visiting associate clinical professor of law at the Law School.]
„Unsere Demokratie steht auf dem Spiel“: Nancy Pelosi macht mit der Anklage gegen Trump Ernst (German)
The impeachment process is a lengthy process. The procedure in the Senate especially "is very similar to a legal process," explains Richard Briffault, a professor at Columbia Law School. "Witnesses will be interrogated again, the lawyers of the President will answer. There are certain procedural rules," says the impeachment expert.
New York Daily News—December 6
Cuomo’s unfinished business on the climate
By Amy Turner
Due to the environmental justice bill’s specification that it go into effect on Jan. 1 of any year, and the rapidly winding down legislative session in Albany, Cuomo has precious little time left to sign it. Without a signed environmental justice bill, the CLCPA, and its massive potential for getting New York off fossil fuels, goes away.
[Note: Turner is a senior fellow at the Sabin Center.]
Long-Run Short Selling
By Joshua Mitts
Just as there is a growing recognition of the need for shareholders to focus on long-run value creation, so the corporate governance community should insist that short sellers promote long-run price accuracy rather than short-term trading profits. . . . The right policy goal is not to eradicate short sellers – but to encourage them to hold for the long run.
City & State NY—December 8
How Tish James is taking on Big Tech
Tim Wu, a professor at Columbia Law School and author of the book “The Curse of Bigness: Antitrust in the New Gilded Age,” said that state attorneys’ general focus on antitrust issues is not something that was born with the advent of Big Tech, but reaches back to cases like Standard Oil. But on issues like the T-Mobile and Sprint merger, Wu said, state-level action comes in part from the severity of the cases and a federal dereliction of duty.
The New York Times—December 8
With White House Absent, Impeachment Devolves Into Partisan Brawl
“That is a tragedy,” said Philip Bobbitt, a Columbia University law professor and a leading expert on the history of impeachment. The framers of the Constitution were careful to design a process for removing a president from office that they hoped would rise above the nation’s petty political squabbles, he said. “They did everything possible to prevent that from happening, and we are plunging headlong into it,” Mr. Bobbitt said.
[Note: This article appeared in multiple media outlets worldwide. Amid news concerning the impeachment of President Donald Trump, Bobbitt was also quoted in the Associated Press, Bloomberg News, and NPR’s All Things Considered.]
Project Syndicate—December 10
If Wealth Is Justified, so Is a Wealth Tax
By Katharina Pistor
Each man’s billions, we are told, belong to him; he earned the money and should therefore get to decide how to spend it, be it on philanthropic projects, taxes, or neither. . . . But this perspective ignores the fact that accumulated wealth is largely a product of law, and by implication of the state and the people who constitute it.
Boston Globe—December 10
New York judge rejects lawsuit against ExxonMobil
"I'm sure that Exxon will stress its victory in New York to the Massachusetts court, but the cases have less in common than meets the eye," said Michael B. Gerrard, director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School. "The New York and Massachusetts suits were based on different statutes and had much different focuses."
[Note: Amid news concerning New York state’s lawsuit against ExxonMobil, Gerrard was also quoted in E&E News and The Washington Post.]
The State Claims Hemp Is Legal. The Brooklyn D.A. Disagrees
"The problem for the Brooklyn DA is an unpopular, uninterpretable and unenforceable law," said Jeffrey Fagan, a law professor at Columbia University. "It must be confusing to police, whose default response is to make arrests, even if they are tossed out by prosecutors. The arrests won't stand, yet the law forces DA's to choose between a poorly written law and defending the cops for enforcing it."
NBC News—December 10
Exxon found not guilty in $1.6 billion climate-change securities fraud trial
The case was dismissed “with prejudice,” which means that “this case cannot be tried again on these facts in New York,” Columbia University Law Professor John Coffee said. He added that it could go to New York State Appellate Court and a federal case would be “very unlikely” and “ill-fated.”
The New York Times—December 10
New York Loses Climate Change Fraud Case Against Exxon Mobil
Merritt B. Fox, a professor of securities law at Columbia Law School, said that statement from the judge was “the gist of the decision,” because “the Martin Act is about securities fraud, not about evildoing by large corporations generally.”
The New York Times—December 10
America’s Top Foundations Bankroll Attack on Big Tech
At a conference at the University of Utah this fall, Dan Crane, a conservative law professor, challenged a group of participants including Tim Wu, a legal scholar and New York Times contributing opinion writer who is a leading voice calling for more aggressive antitrust enforcement. Over box lunches, the group wrote a statement, later published by Mr. Wu, listing legal precedents the group hopes will be overturned and policies it hopes will be enacted.
[Note: Amid news concerning antitrust laws, Wu was also quoted or referenced in The American Conservative, Bloombe
The Millions—December 11
A Year in Reading: Jedediah Britton-Purdy
By Jedediah Britton-Purdy
Books often bring the new for me, but this year they were more of a trace backward, stitching new experience into what underlay it.
The New York Times—December 11
How Professors Help Rip Off Students
By Tim Wu
For professors the path of least resistance is just to keep assigning the same book, in its latest edition. When prices were reasonable, that was a fine practice, but it is increasingly indefensible.
Opinion analysis: Court makes short work of easy case: Government cannot collect in-house attorney’s fees from litigant challenging denial of patent application
By Ronald Mann
A brief overview of the case confirms why it was so easy for the court to resolve quickly. The case involves an eccentric provision of the Patent Act (Section 145) that deals with procedures for disappointed patent applicants.
Bloomberg News—December 11
Supreme Court Won’t Let Federal Executions Resume (Audio)
Jeffrey Fagan, a professor at Columbia Law School, discusses the Supreme Court’s refusal to allow the federal government to resume executions after a 16-year hiatus, rejecting a bid by President Donald Trump’s administration to lift a court-ordered hold.
The Chronicle of Higher Education—December 11
Trump Has Signed Orders on Campus Speech and Anti-Semitism. Some Critics See Potential for Conflict.
Katherine Franke, a law professor at Columbia University, said the order could exacerbate the tendency to interpret any criticism of Israel as anti-Semitism. “If I raise the issue about the annexation of settlements, I am routinely hammered with criticism of being anti-Semitic,” she said. “Even if I don’t mention the Jewish people, there is a body of activists on campus and in well-funded outside organizations who are poised to describe any criticism of the State of Israel as anti-Semitic.”
[Note: Franke’s comments were referenced in Nonprofit Quarterly.]
Yahoo Finance—December 11
Behind the Big Tech antitrust backlash: A turning point for America
“Every revolution is always styled as a counter-revolution,” notes Columbia Law School professor Tim Wu, slyly, in an interview. . . . . It was kick-started nearly three years earlier, when a then-27-year-old Yale Law School student, Lina Khan, published a tour-de-force law review article about Amazon. . . . (Now on leave from her academic fellowship at Columbia Law School, Khan is counsel to the House antitrust subcommittee, which is conducting a probe into — you guessed it — Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Apple.) . . . “There needs to be some presumption about whether you are more trusting of the markets to self-correct or of the government’s ability to get it right,” said Anu Bradford, an expert on European competition law at Columbia Law School. “Europeans are not as worried about false positives. They are worried about false negatives.”
Arizona Public Media—December 12
Border humanitarian aid work on trial (Article and audio)
Katherine Franke is a law professor and faculty director of the Law, Rights and Religion Project at Columbia University. She joined four other professors at Columbia in filing a brief in Warren's case supporting his use of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. When many people think of religious liberty, Christianity often comes to mind. But Franke says that’s just because of recent history.
US prosecutors turn to possible bribery charges in investigation over Ukrainian natural gas company
Favorov is a US citizen, but because Naftogaz is state-owned, he would be considered a foreign official in the eyes of prosecutors, said Berit Berger, a former New York federal prosecutor who is now executive director of the Center for the Advancement of Public Integrity at Columbia Law School.
[Note: This article appeared in multiple media outlets nationwide.]
Los Angeles Times—December 13
Claims of on-set misconduct can create a social media firestorm. TV networks are scrambling to respond
“When a network is overly invested in one character, one bright star, whether it’s the star of the show or the executive producer or the president of the company, the ability to constrain their behavior and bring it into accord with what we think are workplace norms is always going to be counterbalanced with ‘but we need him’ or ‘he’s the center of the project,’” said Kimberlé Crenshaw, a professor of law at UCLA and Columbia University.
The Nation—December 13
Exxon Won a Major Climate Change Lawsuit—but More Are Coming
Michael Burger, the executive director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University, described the ruling as “a narrow decision on a specific claim about a particular set of non-required statements Exxon made a few years ago.”
The National Interest—December 13
New York Suffers Embarrassing Defeat in Climate Lawsuit
That still left the state's elastic, ultra-broad Martin Act, which any defendant would have to fear: it gives the state's AG unusual powers that are hard to square with due process protection. But even the Martin Act charges failed, for reasons foreshadowed by Prof. Merritt Fox in this Columbia Law School post.
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung—December 13
Es war einmal in Amerika (German)
After all, the largest American banks such as JP Morgan Chase or the Bank of America are among the largest American corporations. However, this has not always been the case, as law professors Jeffrey Gordon and Kathryn Judge from Columbia University in New York state in a paper on the "The Origins of a Capital Market Union in the United States".
The New York Times—December 15
The Decade Tech Lost Its Way
May 31, 2019
Antitrust regulators target Big Tech
Tim Wu, a Columbia University law professor: We’re witnessing the end of the long antitrust winter. After years of discussing and agonizing and asking whether Big Tech has gotten too powerful, things reached a breaking point this year.
The Atlantic—December 16
The Senate Impeachment Trial Could Use a Little Secrecy
By Jonathan Gould and David Pozen
Anything less than a fully open impeachment trial might seem antithetical to principles of good governance, more appropriate for a Kafka story than for a chamber that likes to imagine itself as “the world’s greatest deliberative body.” But the idea is both less radical and more defensible than it may seem at first glance.
[Note: This article was also quoted in Quartz.]
Just Security—December 16
The House Should Pause Impeachment
By Philip Bobbitt
Unless there is compelling evidence that has swayed the country and moved a great majority of Senators, the House need not send a bill of impeachment to the Senate. It’s better for the House and for the country to hit pause, and turn now to the courts for resolution.
[Note: Bobbitt’s article was quoted in The Atlantic.]
Canada’s National Observer | Opinion—December 17
Climate litigation is on the increase and companies need to take notice
More than 1,400 climate-change cases have been filed in more than 30 jurisdictions against governments and corporations, including more than 1,000 in the United States since 1986, according to the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School.
Global recognition 'opens doors' for peasant groups, right to land
The agreement makes an explicit reference to a “right to land”, making it the first major U.N. declaration to do so, said Kaitlin Y. Cordes, head of the land and agriculture program at Columbia University’s Center on Sustainable Investment. “There has been growing momentum to recognize a human right to land within the international human rights sphere,” she said, describing the declaration’s inclusion as “groundbreaking”.
[Note: This article appeared in multiple media outlets worldwide.]
HUD Spends Millions on Lead Abatement. Why Are Public Housing Authorities Still Struggling?
But Emily Benfer, director of the Health Justice Advocacy Clinic at Columbia Law School who studies health and housing issues, said there’s a lack of oversight to ensure that properties are complying — and there’s not enough money to repair the properties. “This is becoming a public health crisis that will take a concerted effort,” Benfer said. “But the cornerstone of any intervention must be primary intervention, identifying hazards before individuals are exposed.”
[Note: Benfer is a visiting associate clinical professor of law at the Law School. This article appeared in multiple media outlets nationwide.]
Chicago Tribune—December 18
2019 books on the attention economy: Reclaiming our focus in a world of distraction
Citing Tim Wu’s book, “The Attention Merchants,” she considers how the apps that profit from our attention are specifically designed to consume as much of it as possible. Meanwhile, commerce hums along, our personal data “tracked, recorded and resold” by corporations as we compulsively click, “like” and search.
The Deal—December 18
Activist Investing Today: Columbia’s Coffee on WeWork, Softbank and IPO Ratchets (Audio)
Retail investors are being harmed by essentially secret IPO protection deals still-private companies are reaching with mutual funds. At least that’s the view of Columbia Law School professor John Coffee, who spoke with The Deal for its Activist Investing Today podcast about so-called IPO ratchets — contracts some mutual funds are receiving entitling them to additional shares in the event an initial public offering falls below the valuation reflected in the final private equity round.
The Root—December 18
Meet the Black Woman Who Is the Brains Behind the Green New Deal
But her thinking changed as she continued with her studies and realized that environmental justice was a key component to liberating black people in the policy space. Gunn-Wright credits black feminism with helping her to draw that connection—especially the work of Dorothy Roberts, Jessica Fulton and Kimberlé Crenshaw.
Wired Magazine—December 18
How Facebook’s ‘like’ button hijacked our attention and broke the 2010s
“Scattered around the web, [Like buttons] allowed Facebook to follow users wherever they wandered online, sending messages back to the mother ship (‘She’s looking for cruises’),” Columbia University professor Tim Wu points out in his book The Attention Merchants. “That would allow, for example, the Carnival Cruise Line to hit the user with cruise ads the moment they returned to Facebook.”
Associated Press—December 19
Wisconsin’s Catholic hospitals limit reproductive procedures
Wisconsin . . . is the only state where black women are more likely to deliver their babies in a Catholic institution than a non-Catholic one, Columbia Law School researchers found.
[Note: This article appeared in multiple media outlets nationwide. The report by the Law, Rights, and Religion Project (formerly the Public Rights/Private Conscience Project) was also referenced in USA Today and The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.]
Longreads Best of 2019: Music Writing
I Believe I Can Lie (Kimberlé Crenshaw, The Baffler)
In the wake of the edifice-toppling documentary Surviving R. Kelly, law professor and intersectional theorist Crenshaw analyzes the lyrics to Kelly’s answer song, “I Admit,” as an example of the “SOB (Save Our Brotha”) rhetorical strategy also employed by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas when faced with accusations of sexual harassment.
Climate Connections—December 19
Hurricane Maria ravaged her island nation. Now she wants to protect climate migrants. (Audio)
Ama Francis is from Dominica, a small island nation in the Caribbean. . . . as a fellow at the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University. She researches and advocates for international agreements to help climate migrants – like those from Dominica – resettle and work in new countries.
InsideClimate News—December 19
Donald Trump's Record on Climate Change
Columbia University's Sabin Center for Climate Change Law counts 131 actions toward federal climate deregulation since Trump took office.
The Politics of Trump’s Impeachment
Even then, terms such as “bribery” are up for debate. Philip Bobbitt of Columbia University suggests that President Trump did sail close to it in his dinner with then-FBI director James Comey. The occasion saw Trump inquiring of Comey as to whether he wanted to keep his job, suggesting that he terminate the Russia investigation.
[Note: This article appeared in multiple media outlets nationwide.]
Climate Change Litigation Enters a New Era as Court Rules That Emissions Reduction Is a Human Right
The Urgenda case has gotten the furthest of all international litigation regarding climate change, according to Michael Gerrard, founder and director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University. Together with the law firm Arnold & Porter, the Center runs a database to track climate change litigation both internationally and in the U.S.
The New York Times—December 20
In ‘Strongest’ Climate Ruling Yet, Dutch Court Orders Leaders to Take Action
Michael Gerrard, director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University, said the decision was groundbreaking. “There have been 1,442 climate lawsuits around the world,” he said. “This is the strongest decision ever. The Dutch Supreme Court upheld the first court order anywhere directing a country to slash its greenhouse gas emissions.”
[Note: Gerrard’s comments also appeared in Axios and The Independent.]
Open (India)—December 20
Best of 2019: My Choice
SRINATH RAGHAVAN, Author
Katharina Pistor’s The Code of Capital: How the Law Creates Wealth and Inequality is a powerful analysis of the legal structuring of global financial capitalism and its deleterious consequences.
Can Twitter Ever Be Decentralized?
Decentralized social networks date back to the Diaspora social network. Founded by four NYU students in 2010, Diaspora was inspired by a speech delivered by Columbia law professor Eben Moglen, who proposed the creation of a personal cloud server called a “freedom box” to help re-decentralize the internet.
Politico New York—December 20
Con Ed study shows billions needed to prepare for climate change
"This study advances the global state of the art in anticipating the impacts of climate change on critical infrastructure," said Michael Gerrard, professor at Columbia Law School and director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law. "It will help Con Edison to assure reliable service in the face of future floods, heat waves and other extreme events, and it will provide a template for other utilities to undertake similar work, as they should."
El País—December 20
Un pulso legal con la vista puesta en los electores (Spanish)
For Sarah Cleveland, professor of Human and Constitutional Rights at Columbia University, the abuse of presidential power would undoubtedly enter that expression. "One of the considerations that has always been at the heart of the question of whether the impeachment is appropriate is whether the president abused the power of his office for personal gain," she defends. Richard Briffault, government ethics expert from the same New York university, agrees. "What people don't understand, when Republicans say the president only did foreign policy, is that it has been shown that he was withholding help and asking for things from Ukraine, not for a legitimate reason for foreign policy or national security," he assures.
Impeachment in an alternate universe: Will Ralph Nader's "missing" charges haunt America's future?
I asked Columbia Law School professor David Pozen for his assessment. “What strikes me immediately about the Nader-Fisher-Fein proposed articles of impeachment is the way they blend critiques of tactics used by all recent presidents with critiques of tactics used only by Trump,” Pozen said.
The Washington Post | Opinion—December 24
The climate movement is gaining momentum in spite of Trump
In total, the administration and Congress have taken more than 130 actions since the president took office “to scale back or wholly eliminate federal climate mitigation and adaptation measures,” according to the Climate Deregulation Tracker at Columbia University’s Sabin Center for Climate Change Law.
Three Medical Centers Cancel CBP, ICE Contracts
Faculty member and attorney Elora Mukherjee was deeply concerned by conditions at a CBP facility in Clint, Texas, when she was there last summer. She was one of a small group of lawyers who went there as a monitor for the Flores Settlement Agreement. Mukherjee, a clinical professor of law and director of Columbia Law School's Immigrants' Rights Clinic, has worked on and off for more than 12 years with children and families seeking asylum who have been subject to detention.
El Economista—December 27
Neutralidad de la red a la mexicana (Spanish)
Net neutrality is a principle of non-discrimination of data traffic on the Internet. The term was coined in 2003 by researcher Tim Wu; it means that Internet service providers treat data traffic equally, without discrimination and without charging the user differently according to the content, website, platform, application, type of equipment used for access or mode of communication.
The Guardian—December 28
India’s founding values are threatened by sinister new forms of oppression
By Madhav Khosla
What is most startling, however, has been the coming together of technology, surveillance and coercion to produce an entirely new machinery of state power. Indeed, India’s protests may well mark the first moment when the new arsenal of the state is deployed on such a large scale.
[Note: Khosla is Columbia Law’s Ambedkar Visiting Associate Professor.]
The New York Times—December 28
Science Under Attack: How Trump Is Sidelining Researchers and Their Work
“The disregard for expertise in the federal government is worse than it’s ever been,” said Michael Gerrard, director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University, which has tracked more than 200 reports of Trump administration efforts to restrict or misuse science since 2017. “It’s pervasive.”
[Note: This article appeared in multiple media outlets nationwide.]
The Guardian—December 29
How a decade of disillusion gave way to people power
With this came a capacity to understand more complex, subtle and hidden forms of oppression, and to think – encapsulated in that beautifully valuable word, contributed in 1989 by law scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw intersectionality – about how multiple identities overlap (and thus do multiple forms of oppression or privilege).
Greentech Media—December 30
Decarbonization Takes Center Stage in Mining as Renewables-Plus-Storage Become Cost-Competitive
According to a report by the Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment, the sector accounts for between 1.25 percent and 11 percent of total global energy demand, with the wide variation due to which downstream activities are included in the calculation.
Los Angeles Times—December 30
New U.S. law requires probe of Marshall Islands nuclear dump threatened by rising seas
“At last the U.S. government seems to be getting serious about addressing this serious environmental issue that it created decades ago,” said Michael Gerrard, a legal scholar at Columbia University’s law school. “This is a very welcome development.”
The New Republic—December 31
The Death of the Good Internet Was an Inside Job
The Good Internet believed in the promise of community—that if you could build one, anything was possible. . . . In an interview with Chris Hayes in May 2018, Columbia Law School professor Tim Wu—a technology expert who coined the idea of “net neutrality”—summed up those Good Internet ideas that were flourishing at the start of the decade.
Titularizaciones con y sin titularizadoras (Spanish)
As explained by Prof. Katharina Pistor in her best seller, The Code of Capital (2019), lawyers as legal programmers use the law to “graft code modules [of capital] to new assets” or “reconfigure existing assets” using legal rules.
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