The Classical Liberal Constitution


Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674726499
Category: Law
Page: 701
View: 3364

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American liberals and conservatives alike take for granted a progressive view of the Constitution that took root in the early twentieth century. Richard Epstein laments this complacency which, he believes, explains America's current economic malaise and political gridlock. Steering clear of well-worn debates between defenders of originalism and proponents of a living Constitution, Epstein employs close textual reading, historical analysis, and political and economic theory to urge a return to the classical liberal theory of governance that animated the framers' original constitutional design. Grounded in the thought of Locke, Hume, Madison, and other Enlightenment figures, classical liberalism emphasized federalism, restricted government, separation of powers, and strong protection of individual rights. New Deal progressives challenged this synthesis by embracing government as a force for social good rather than a necessary evil. The Supreme Court has unwisely ratified the progressive program by sustaining many legislative initiatives at odds with the classical liberal Constitution. Epstein addresses both the Constitution's structural safeguards against state power and its protection of individual rights. He sheds light on contemporary disputes ranging from presidential prerogatives to health care legislation, while exploring such enduring topics as judicial review, economic regulation, freedom of speech and religion, and equal protection.

The Classical Liberal Constitution


Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674727800
Category: Law
Page: 700
View: 2987

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American liberals and conservatives alike take for granted a progressive view of the Constitution that took root in the early twentieth century. Richard Epstein laments this complacency which, he believes, explains America's current economic malaise and political gridlock. Steering clear of well-worn debates between defenders of originalism and proponents of a living Constitution, Epstein employs close textual reading, historical analysis, and political and economic theory to urge a return to the classical liberal theory of governance that animated the framers' original constitutional design. Grounded in the thought of Locke, Hume, Madison, and other Enlightenment figures, classical liberalism emphasized federalism, restricted government, separation of powers, and strong protection of individual rights. New Deal progressives challenged this synthesis by embracing government as a force for social good rather than a necessary evil. The Supreme Court has unwisely ratified the progressive program by sustaining many legislative initiatives at odds with the classical liberal Constitution. Epstein addresses both the Constitution's structural safeguards against state power and its protection of individual rights. He sheds light on contemporary disputes ranging from presidential prerogatives to health care legislation, while exploring such enduring topics as judicial review, economic regulation, freedom of speech and religion, and equal protection.

The Classical Liberal Constitution


Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674724891
Category: Law
Page: 700
View: 4937

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American liberals and conservatives alike take for granted a progressive view of the Constitution that took root in the early twentieth century. Richard Epstein laments this complacency which, he believes, explains America's current economic malaise and political gridlock. Steering clear of well-worn debates between defenders of originalism and proponents of a living Constitution, Epstein employs close textual reading, historical analysis, and political and economic theory to urge a return to the classical liberal theory of governance that animated the framers' original constitutional design. Grounded in the thought of Locke, Hume, Madison, and other Enlightenment figures, classical liberalism emphasized federalism, restricted government, separation of powers, and strong protection of individual rights. New Deal progressives challenged this synthesis by embracing government as a force for social good rather than a necessary evil. The Supreme Court has unwisely ratified the progressive program by sustaining many legislative initiatives at odds with the classical liberal Constitution. Epstein addresses both the Constitution's structural safeguards against state power and its protection of individual rights. He sheds light on contemporary disputes ranging from presidential prerogatives to health care legislation, while exploring such enduring topics as judicial review, economic regulation, freedom of speech and religion, and equal protection.

How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution


Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: Cato Institute
ISBN: 1933995297
Category: Political Science
Page: 158
View: 7792

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How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution explores the fundamental shift in political and economic thought of the Progressive Era and how the Supreme Court was used to transform the Constitution into one that reflected the ideas of their own time, while undermining America’s founding principles. Epstein examines key decisions to demonstrate how Progressives attacked much of the legal precedent and eventually weakened the Court’s thinking concerning limited federal powers and the protection of individual rights. Progressives on the Court undermined basic economic principles of freedom and competition, paving the way for the modern redistributive and regulatory state. This book shows that our modern “constitutional law,” fashioned largely by the New Deal Court in the late 1930s, has its roots in Progressivism, not in our country's founding principles, and how so many of those ideas, however discredited by more recent economic thought, still shape the Court's decisions.

Design for Liberty

Private Property, Public Administration, and the Rule of Law
Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674063058
Category: Law
Page: 248
View: 1119

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The noted legal scholar Richard Epstein advocates a much smaller federal government, arguing that our over-regulated state gives too much discretion to regulators, which results in arbitrary, unfair decisions and other abuses. Epstein bases his classical liberalism on the twin pillars of the rule of law and of private contracts and property rights.

Skepticism and Freedom

A Modern Case for Classical Liberalism
Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226213040
Category: Philosophy
Page: 311
View: 7984

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With this book, Richard A. Epstein provides a spirited and systematic defense of classical liberalism against the critiques mounted against it over the past thirty years. One of the most distinguished and provocative legal scholars writing today, Epstein here explains his controversial ideas in what will quickly come to be considered one of his cornerstone works. He begins by laying out his own vision of the key principles of classical liberalism: respect for the autonomy of the individual, a strong system of private property rights, the voluntary exchange of labor and possessions, and prohibitions against force or fraud. Nonetheless, he not only recognizes but insists that state coercion is crucial to safeguarding these principles of private ordering and supplying the social infrastructure on which they depend. Within this framework, Epstein then shows why limited government is much to be preferred over the modern interventionist welfare state. Many of the modern attacks on the classical liberal system seek to undermine the moral, conceptual, cognitive, and psychological foundations on which it rests. Epstein rises to this challenge by carefully rebutting each of these objections in turn. For instance, Epstein demonstrates how our inability to judge the preferences of others means we should respect their liberty of choice regarding their own lives. And he points out the flaws in behavioral economic arguments which, overlooking strong evolutionary pressures, claim that individual preferences are unstable and that people are unable to adopt rational means to achieve their own ends. Freedom, Epstein ultimately shows, depends upon a skepticism that rightly shuns making judgments about what is best for individuals, but that also avoids the relativistic trap that all judgments about our political institutions have equal worth. A brilliant defense of classical liberalism, Skepticism and Freedom will rightly be seen as an intellectual landmark.

Takings

Private Property and the Power of Eminent Domain
Author: Richard Allen EPSTEIN,Richard Allen Epstein
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674036557
Category: Law
Page: 376
View: 2604

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If legal scholar Richard Epstein is right, then the New Deal is wrong, if not unconstitutional. Epstein develops a coherent normative theory that permits us to distinguish between permissible takings for public use and impermissible ones. He then examines a wide range of government regulations and taxes under a single comprehensive theory.

Mortal Peril

Our Inalienable Right to Health Care?
Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 9780738201894
Category: Medical
Page: 503
View: 8071

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Examines the social and financial benefits of an unregulated healthcare system while offering examples of how present day regulations are affecting medical care from being provided in specific areas. Reprint.

Forbidden Grounds

The Case Against Employment Discrimination Laws
Author: Richard A. Epstein
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674308091
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 530
View: 5612

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This controversial book presents a powerful argument for the repeal of anti-discrimination laws within the workplace. These laws--frequently justified as a means to protect individuals from race, sex, age, and disability discrimination--have been widely accepted by liberals and conservatives alike since the passing of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and are today deeply ingrained in our legal culture. Richard Epstein demonstrates that these laws set one group against another, impose limits on freedom of choice, undermine standards of merit and achievement, unleash bureaucratic excesses, mandate inefficient employment practices, and cause far more invidious discrimination than they prevent. Epstein urges a return to the common law principles of individual autonomy that permit all persons to improve their position through trade, contract, and bargain, free of government constraint. He advances both theoretical and empirical arguments to show that competitive markets outperform the current system of centralized control over labor markets. Forbidden Grounds has a broad philosophical, economic, and historical sweep. Epstein offers novel explanations for the rational use of discrimination, and he tests his theory against a historical backdrop that runs from the early Supreme Court decisions, such as Plessy v. Ferguson which legitimated Jim Crow, through the current controversies over race-norming and the 1991 Civil Rights Act. His discussion of sex discrimination contains a detailed examination of the laws on occupational qualifications, pensions, pregnancy, and sexual harassment. He also explains how the case for affirmative action is strengthened by the repeal of employment discrimination laws.He concludes the book by looking at the recent controversies regarding age and disability discrimination. Forbidden Grounds will capture the attention of lawyers, social scientists, policymakers, and employers, as well as all persons interested in the administration of this major

Go Directly to Jail

The Criminalization of Almost Everything
Author: Gene Healy
Publisher: Cato Institute
ISBN: 9781930865631
Category: Law
Page: 173
View: 1022

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The American criminal justice system is becoming ever more centralized and punitive, owing to rampant federalization and mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines. Go Directly to Jail examines these alarming trends and proposes reforms that could rein in a criminal justice apparatus at war with fairness and common sense.

Constitutional Originalism

A Debate
Author: Bennett,Robert William Bennett,Lawrence B. Solum
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 0801460638
Category: History
Page: 224
View: 8673

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Elucidates the debate between constitutional originalism and the "living constitution" approach.

Principles For A Free Society

Reconciling Individual Liberty With The Common Good
Author: Richard A. Epstein,A Epstein
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9780786748754
Category: Political Science
Page: 364
View: 439

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The country's leading libertarian scholar sets forth the essential principles for a legal system that best balances individual liberty versus the common good.

Restoring the Lost Constitution

The Presumption of Liberty
Author: Randy E. Barnett
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 140084813X
Category: Law
Page: 448
View: 4776

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The U.S. Constitution found in school textbooks and under glass in Washington is not the one enforced today by the Supreme Court. In Restoring the Lost Constitution, Randy Barnett argues that since the nation's founding, but especially since the 1930s, the courts have been cutting holes in the original Constitution and its amendments to eliminate the parts that protect liberty from the power of government. From the Commerce Clause, to the Necessary and Proper Clause, to the Ninth and Tenth Amendments, to the Privileges or Immunities Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, the Supreme Court has rendered each of these provisions toothless. In the process, the written Constitution has been lost. Barnett establishes the original meaning of these lost clauses and offers a practical way to restore them to their central role in constraining government: adopting a "presumption of liberty" to give the benefit of the doubt to citizens when laws restrict their rightful exercises of liberty. He also provides a new, realistic and philosophically rigorous theory of constitutional legitimacy that justifies both interpreting the Constitution according to its original meaning and, where that meaning is vague or open-ended, construing it so as to better protect the rights retained by the people. As clearly argued as it is insightful and provocative, Restoring the Lost Constitution forcefully disputes the conventional wisdom, posing a powerful challenge to which others must now respond. This updated edition features an afterword with further reflections on individual popular sovereignty, originalist interpretation, judicial engagement, and the gravitational force that original meaning has exerted on the Supreme Court in several recent cases.

Free Markets Under Siege

Cartels, Politics, and Social Welfare
Author: Richard Allen Epstein
Publisher: Hoover Inst Press
ISBN: N.A
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 84
View: 4572

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Drawing on his extensive knowledge of history, law, and economics, Richard Epstein examines how best to regulate the interface between market choice and government intervention—and find a middle way between socialism and libertarianism. He argues the merits of competition over protectionism and reveals the negative results that ensue when political forces displace economic competition with subsidies and barriers to entry. In the process, he provides an illuminating analysis of some of the ways that special interest groups, with the help of sympathetic politicians, have been able to manipulate free markets in their favor.

The Redistribution Recession

How Labor Market Distortions Contracted the Economy
Author: Casey B. Mulligan
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199942218
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 351
View: 3011

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"Major subsidies and regulations intended to help the poor and unemployed were changed in more than a dozen ways after 2007. Economist Casey B. Mulligan argues that many of these changes were reasonable reactions to economic events, with the intention of helping people endure the recession, but they also reduced incentives for people to work and businesses to hire. He measures the startling changes in implicit tax rates that resulted from a labyrinth of new and expanded 'social safety net' programs, and quantifies the effects of these changes on the labor market and the economy. He also reveals how borrowers can expect their earnings to affect the amount that lenders will forgive in debt renegotiation, and how this has acted as a massive implicit tax on earning. He explains how redistribution in the forms of subsidies, taxes and minimum-wage laws profoundly altered the path of the economy and made the recent recession one of the deepest and longest in decades. The Redistribution Recession is a controversial, clear-cut, and thoroughly researched analysis of the effects of various government policies on the labor market. It offers ground-breaking interpretations and precise explanations of the interplay between unemployment and financial markets."--Jacket.

The Dirty Dozen

How Twelve Supreme Court Cases Radically Expanded Government and Eroded Freedom
Author: Robert A. Levy,William Mellor
Publisher: Cato Institute
ISBN: 1935308327
Category: Law
Page: 302
View: 9561

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Alexander Hamilton wrote that “the judiciary, from the nature of its functions, will always be the least dangerous to the political rights of the Constitution.” If only that were true. The Founding Fathers wanted the judicial branch to serve as a check on the power of the legislative and executive, and gave the Supreme Court the responsibility of interpreting the Constitution in a way that would safeguard individual freedoms. In some cases, like Brown V. Board of Education and United States V. Lopez, the Court fulfilled its role, protecting us from racial discrimination and the heavy hand of the federal government. But sadly, the Supreme Court has also handed down many destructive decisions on cases you probably never learned about in school. In The Dirty Dozen, two distinguished legal scholars shed light on the twelve worst cases, which allowed government to interfere in your private contractual agreements; curtail your rights to criticize or support political candidates; arrest and imprison you indefinitely, without filing charges; and seize your private property, without compensation, when someone uses the property for criminal activity—even if you don’t know about it! This is not a book just for lawyers. It’s for all Americans who want to understand how the Supreme Court can affect our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. This paperback edition includes a new preface, “Guns, Bailouts, and Empathetic Judges,” which highlights new and critical issues that have arisen since the book’s initial edition was published in 2008.

The American Illness

Essays on the Rule of Law
Author: F. H. Buckley
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300175213
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 534
View: 7787

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DIVThis provocative book brings together twenty-plus contributors from the fields of law, economics, and international relations to look at whether the U.S. legal system is contributing to the country’s long postwar decline. The book provides a comprehensive overview of the interactions between economics and the law—in such areas as corruption, business regulation, and federalism—and explains how our system works differently from the one in most countries, with contradictory and hard to understand business regulations, tort laws that vary from state to state, and surprising judicial interpretations of clearly written contracts. This imposes far heavier litigation costs on American companies and hampers economic growth./div

Constitutional Conservatism

Liberty, Self-Government, and Political Moderation
Author: Peter Berkowitz
Publisher: Hoover Press
ISBN: 9780817916060
Category: Political Science
Page: 146
View: 6332

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Peter Berkowitz identifies the political principles social conservatives and libertarians share, or should share, and sketches the common ground on which they can and should join forces. Drawing on the writings of Edmund Burke,The Federalist, and the high points of post-World War II American conservatism, he argues that the top political priority for social conservatives and libertarians should be to rally around the principles of liberty embodied in the US Constitution and pursue reform in light of them.

Classical Liberalism


Author: Charles Siegel
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9780978872861
Category: History
Page: 250
View: 8740

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"Classical Liberalism is a must read. For one thing, readers should not deprive themselves of the pure enjoyment of this engaging and clear-minded narrative of a broad swath of history. For another, anyone concerned about the state of democratic civil society in the West, and worried about its future, cannot afford to neglect this disarming analysis." - Prof. Elisabeth Lasch-Quinn, Syracuse University According to the conventional history, liberalism went through two phases, laissez-faire liberalism and modern liberalism. This book rediscoveers a lost tradition of liberal thought and shows that liberalism went through three phases: Classical liberalism believed in positive freedom, the right of people to manage their own affairs and to govern themselves. Victorian liberalism had two aspects. Laissez-faire liberalism accommodated the industrial economy by inventing the ideal of negative freedom: freedom was simply absence of government control. There was also a more idealistic aspect of Victorian liberalism which is largely forgotten today but which was central to the abolitionist and feminist movements. Modernist liberalism kept the laissez-faire idea of negative freedom but applied it to a narrow realm of personal behavior. It expected centralized organizations to make important decisions, and it emphasized personal freedom. Laissez-faire and modernist liberalism redefined freedom as negative in order to accommodate economic growth. To revitalize the liberal tradition, we need to revive the ideal of positive freedom.