Archive for October, 2010

Professor Brian Galle on Policy Innovation

October 25, 2010 Leave a comment

In the fifth installment of the Faculty Workshop Series, sponsored by the Frances Lewis Law Center, Professor Brian Galle, Assistant Professor at Boston College Law School, came to speak on October 25 about the current draft of his article, Policy Innovation in Firms and Local & National Governments.

In the article, Professor Galle discusses the various factors that drive innovation and creative policy implementation in local and national governments. He argues because governments don’t retain any property rights in their ideas, they are less likely to innovate, choosing rather to let another government absorb the risk of the idea and then implement it after a successful showing, getting a free-ride. Professor Galle presents the view that if governments contract innovation out to private entities, there can be intellectual property protection to help prevent the free-rider problem. After addressing many of the problems inherent in such a model, Professor Galle suggests that perhaps the most efficient model is to have a centralized government, like the federal government, contract out innovation to the states before implementing them on a national scale. Such a solution helps pool resources from all the states to help fund experiments that would be to the benefit of all the states without forcing an individual state to innovate on its own.

Thanks are due to Professor Galle for coming and presenting is innovative views.

Russell A. Miller: Germany’s Basic Law and the Use of Force

October 20, 2010 Leave a comment

Professor Russell A. Miller, the Ethan Allen Faculty Fellow, recently published his article, Germany’s Basic Law and the Use of Force, 17 Ind. J. Global Legal Stud. 197 (2010), published in the Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies.

The article seeks to explain the deep differences between Germany and the United States on security matters and the showing of force. It argues that modern Germany’s deeply embedded reticence towards the use of force, which constantly places it in conflict with America’s more muscular vision of trans-Alanticism, has both roots and expression in the Basic Law, Germany’s version of a Constitution. Professor Miller concludes his article by suggesting that Germany’s constitutional use-of-force regime does more than provide insight into U.S. and German differences on matters of security, but that the German constitution might have achieved something more grand with its challenge to the persistent realist argument that force cannot be constrained by law.

Congratulations to Professor Miller on the publication of this article.

2010 Supreme Court Preview

October 18, 2010 Leave a comment

Each year, the W&L Law chapter of the American Constitution Society sponsors a Supreme Court Preview, where law faculty discuss some of the key cases on the U.S. Supreme Court docket for the upcoming term. During the panel discussion, W&L professors frame the important issues of the case and explain the routes the cases took through the lower courts before being accepted for review by the Court.

This year’s preview is Tuesday, Oct 19, at 6:30 p.m. in the Millhiser Moot Court Room, Sydney Lewis Hall. Presenting during the event will be:

  • Professor Brian Murchison, who will discuss Snyder v. Phelps and its potential implications on First Amendment jurisprudence.
  • Professor Ann Massie, who will discuss Flores-Villar v. United States and the application of equal protection gender discrimination in the  transfer of citizenship to children.
  • Professor Joshua Fairfield, who will discuss Schwarzenegger v. Entertainment Media Association and the constitutionality of California’s ban on the sale of violent video games to minors.
  • Professor Bruck, who will discuss Connick v. Thompson and Skinner v. Switzer and issues of liability and evidence access in criminal cases.

In a “preview of the preview,” Profs. Bruck and Fairfield shared some thoughts about their respective cases in video interviews, which can be viewed below. We will post video of the entire panel discussion following the event.

Prof. Bruck on Connick v. Thompson and Skinner v. Switzer

Professor Joshua Fairfield on Schwarzenegger v. Entertainment Media Association

Professor Brian Murchison, on Snyder v. Phelps and its potential implications on First Amendment jurisprudence.

Timothy S. Jost on Health Care Reform

October 8, 2010 Leave a comment

Professor Timothy S. Jost blogged this morning on the popular health policy blog, Health Affairs, about Judge George Steeh, in the Eastern District of Michigan, upholding the minimum coverage part of the health care reform bill. Professor Jost’s comments were later picked up and quoted by the Wall Street Journal.

Professor Jost expressed his support and agreement with the ruling, stating that it was based on “clear, long-standing precedents.” Opponents to the law argued that the minimum coverage section was outside the Commerce clause authority of Congress and therefore unconstitutional. Prof. Jost praised Judge Steeh’s solid rationale and reasoning as he dismissed opponents to the reform and upheld its constitutionality.

Congratulations to Professor Jost for continuing to be a leader in Health Care Law and staying on the cusp of increasingly relevant policy issues.

Professor Robin F. Wilson on Jesse Gelsinger and Nanotechnology

October 7, 2010 Leave a comment

Robin WilsonProfessor Robin F. Wilson, the Class of 1958 Law Alumni Professor of Law, has given several presentations about her work involving the case of Jesse Gelsinger, the first person to have publicly died from his involvement in a clinical trial for gene therapy. Prof. Wilson presented at the SUNY Upstate Medical University on September 15, the Syracuse College of Law on September 16, the Achieving Excellence in Clinical Research Conference on September 23, and the Beazley Institute for Health Law and Policy at Loyola University Chicago School of Law on September 22.

Professor Wilson has also recently spoke about nanotechnologies, their use in cosmetics and sunscreens, and the potential harm this may cause consumers. She spoke at Yeditepe University in Istanbul, Turkey on October 1 and before the 2d World Congress International Academy of Nanomedicine in Antalya, Turkey on October 6.

Professor Colleen M. Flood on Canadian Health Rights Litigation

October 5, 2010 Leave a comment

In the fourth installment of the Faculty Workshop Series, sponsored by the Frances Lewis Law Center, Professor Colleen M. Flood, Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto, the Canada Research Chair in Health Law and Policy and the Scientific Director of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, came to speak on October 4 about her new article, Charter Rights & Health Care Funding: A Typology of Canadian Health Rights Litigation.

Professor Flood spoke about the Canadian Healthcare system and its mandate to fund medically necessary hospital services and medically required physician services. However, the Canada Health Act provides no further guidance as to what is medically necessary or required. Thus, there has been a surge of lawsuits trying to determine what services should be publicly funded. Professor Flood seeks to create a typology rubric to analyze these cases, hoping to ultimately address the question: is litigation ultimately good or bad for the healthcare system as a whole? She presented her initial testing conditions, the cases she has analyzed thus far, and in the process, and spawned a healthy discussion from everyone in attendance.

Thanks to Professor Flood for coming down to the States to speak with the faculty here at W&L Law.

James E. Moliterno: Exporting American Legal Ethics

October 1, 2010 1 comment

Professor James E. Moliterno, the Vincent Bradford Professor of Law at Washington and Lee recently published his article, Exporting American Legal Ethics, in the Akron Law Review (43 Akron L. Rev. 769).

Prof. Moliterno explores his view that US Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) are too aggressively pushing emerging democracies and post-conflict states to adopt US-style lawyer and judge ethics codes.  This push, he explains, is sometimes being done without sufficient attention to the local legal culture. Prof. Moliterno argues that the large-scale adoption of U.S. models of lawyer and judge regulation outside the United States is likely to produce unfortunate results.

Congratulations are due to Professor Moliterno.