Tag Archives: Law

Litigation is a crapshoot (“Hot Bench” edition)

Meet the “hot” judges of the new syndicated TV show “Hot Bench” (Wikipedia article here). Unlike every other judge show in this well-worn daytime TV genre, “Hot Bench” features a panel of three judges and goes behind the scenes to show … Continue reading

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The House always wins …

Here’s a puzzle: Why do people gamble in casinos, especially if (as our old friend Freddie Torres would like to say when talking about lawsuits against the government) “the House always wins”? By way of example, check out this report by Chris Opfer … Continue reading

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“Crimes Against Logic”

That is the title of this fun little book by Jamie Whyte. (Thanks to Steven Landsburg for the pointer.) By the way, many of the logical fallacies exposed by Whyte are especially relevant to law and judging, such as his critique of “chaotic verbiage” (page … Continue reading

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Are judges like baseball umpires?

(Supreme Court judges, that is.) Neal Katyal, a law professor at Georgetown University, reports in this op-ed that there were no dissenting opinions in more than two-thirds of the cases decided by the U.S. Supreme Court last term. Here is an excerpt from Katyal’s … Continue reading

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Aaron Hernandez pre-trial discovery update

Bristol County prosecutors in the Odin Lloyd homicide case recently turned over to Aaron Hernandez’s defense lawyers 33 pages of text messages between Coach Bill Belichick (a/k/a Mr Grumpy) and Hernandez from February 2013 to May 2013–the four months prior to … Continue reading

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Did Kurt Gödel really discover a loophole in the Constitution?

Our 2013 paper Gödel’s loophole considers two related questions: why have so few scholars taken Gödel’s alleged discovery seriously, and what was this possible logical contradiction in the Constitution? (Hint: it probably has to do something with recursion.) There is also … Continue reading

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Open-source patents?

Elon Musk — co-founder and CEO of Tesla Motors — has this to say about Tesla’s proprietary patents: When I started out with my first company, Zip2, I thought patents were a good thing and worked hard to obtain them. And maybe they were good … Continue reading

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Impeach Obama?

Seriously, since Republicans have a solid majority in the House, and since the House has the sole power of impeachment under Article II, Section  2 of the Constitution, what is the probability that the House of Representatives will, in fact, draw … Continue reading

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Infinite regress in law (a theoretical critique of the Hand formula)

Adjudication is the process of making decisions in law, but decision-making is a costly activity. For simplicity, we can model the process of adjudication (and decision-making generally) as a function consisting of two costly inputs: (i) RESEARCH or information-gathering and (ii) … Continue reading

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“Information hypocrisy” in law

Futurist Robin Hanson has written up another astute blog post on the subject of information hypocrisy. By way of example, Hanson points out the existence of such hypocrisy in law: We say court proceedings are to get information to decide guilt, but … Continue reading

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