Chicago's Best Ideas

Martha Nussbaum, "Long Long Lives: Should We Want Them?"

Today, as our capacity to prolong life increases, people dispute whether indefinite prolongation could possibly be good.  A leading bioethicist, Ezekiel Emanuel (brother of Rahm) has written that we should all want to die at 75!  I'll approach this question by drawing on ancient Greek arguments about why immortal life is undesirable -- arguments that I find fatally flawed.

Participating faculty: 
Martha Nussbaum

Martha Nussbaum, "Long Long Lives: Should We Want Them?"

Today, as our capacity to prolong life increases, people dispute whether indefinite prolongation could possibly be good. 

Today, as our capacity to prolong life increases, people dispute whether indefinite prolongation could possibly be good.  A leading bioethicist, Ezekiel Emanuel (brother of Rahm) has written that we should all want to die at 75!  I'll approach this question by drawing on ancient Greek arguments about why immortal life is undesirable -- arguments that I find fatally flawed.

Laura Weinrib, “Freedom of Conscience and the Civil Liberties Path Not Taken”

Recent efforts by opponents of same-sex marriage and reproductive rights to reorient their agenda around religious freedom have sparked an explosion of scholarship on religious claims for exemption from generally applicable laws.

Participating faculty: 
Laura Weinrib

Laura Weinrib, "Freedom of Conscience and the Civil Liberties Path Not Taken"

Recent efforts by opponents of same-sex marriage and reproductive rights to reorient their agenda around religious freedom have sparked an explosion of scholarship on religious claims for exemption from generally applicable laws. Professor Weinrib will discuss an early antecedent of this strategy: the campaign by the National Civil Liberties Bureau, the organizational precursor of the ACLU, to secure exemptions from military service for conscientious objectors during the First World War.

Recent efforts by opponents of same-sex marriage and reproductive rights to reorient their agenda around religious freedom have sparked an explosion of scholarship on religious claims for exemption from generally applicable laws.

Jonathan Masur, "Deference Mistakes"

Suppose a court holds in the context of a habeas petition that a constitutional right is not yet “clearly established.”  Can we conclude from this that the right does not exist?  The answer, of course, is “no”—it would be error to treat this case as having held that there is no such right.

Participating faculty: 
Jonathan Masur

Jonathan Masur, "Deference Mistakes"

Deference mistakes can propagate over time, leading to systematic shifts in legal doctrine.

Suppose a court holds in the context of a habeas petition that a constitutional right is not yet “clearly established.” Can we conclude from this that the right does not exist? The answer, of course, is “no”—it would be error to treat this case as having held that there is no such right.

M. Todd Henderson, "Abolish Securities Regulation (and Replace It With a Market)"

Our regulation of the stock market is based on an antiquated statute that does not fit well with the realities of modern securities practice. Corporations hoping to access public markets are required to disclose market-moving information without charge and to all investors simultaneously.

Participating faculty: 
M. Todd Henderson

M. Todd Henderson, "Abolish Securities Regulation (and Replace It With a Market)"

Our regulation of the stock market is based on an antiquated statute that does not fit well with the realities of modern securities practice.

Our regulation of the stock market is based on an antiquated statute that does not fit well with the realities of modern securities practice. Corporations hoping to access public markets are required to disclose market-moving information without charge and to all investors simultaneously.

Anup Malani, "Understanding Judicial Decision-making"

Anup Malani, “Understanding Judicial Decision-making: A review, recent results, and an agenda”

Participating faculty: 
Anup Malani

Anup Malani, "Understanding Judicial Decision-making"

Clearly judges cite prior cases, but do they really follow precedent or cherry pick cases that support their conclusions?

Anup Malani, “Understanding Judicial Decision-making: A review, recent results, and an agenda”

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