Active Liberty

Author: Stephen Breyer
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780307424617
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A brilliant new approach to the Constitution and courts of the United States by Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer.For Justice Breyer, the Constitution’s primary role is to preserve and encourage what he calls “active liberty”: citizen participation in shaping government and its laws. As this book argues, promoting active liberty requires judicial modesty and deference to Congress; it also means recognizing the changing needs and demands of the populace. Indeed, the Constitution’s lasting brilliance is that its principles may be adapted to cope with unanticipated situations, and Breyer makes a powerful case against treating it as a static guide intended for a world that is dead and gone. Using contemporary examples from federalism to privacy to affirmative action, this is a vital contribution to the ongoing debate over the role and power of our courts. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Active Liberty

Author: Stephen Breyer
Publisher: Vintage Books USA
ISBN: 0307274942
Format: PDF, Mobi
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The Supreme Court justice defines and examines the legal principles of active liberty and emphasizes its importance in constitutional and statutory interpretation, using examples from the areas of federalism to affirmative action to argue that the Constitution and its tenets may adapt to changing situations and times. Reprint. 35,000 first printing.

Active Liberty

Author: Stephen G. Breyer
Publisher: Alfred a Knopf Incorporated
ISBN: 0307263134
Format: PDF, Docs
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Defines and examines the principles of active liberty and emphasizes its importance in constitutional and statutory interpretation.

A Matter of Interpretation Federal Courts and the Law

Author: Antonin Scalia
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400882958
Format: PDF, ePub
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We are all familiar with the image of the immensely clever judge who discerns the best rule of common law for the case at hand. According to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, a judge like this can maneuver through earlier cases to achieve the desired aim—"distinguishing one prior case on his left, straight-arming another one on his right, high-stepping away from another precedent about to tackle him from the rear, until (bravo!) he reaches the goal—good law." But is this common-law mindset, which is appropriate in its place, suitable also in statutory and constitutional interpretation? In a witty and trenchant essay, Justice Scalia answers this question with a resounding negative. In exploring the neglected art of statutory interpretation, Scalia urges that judges resist the temptation to use legislative intention and legislative history. In his view, it is incompatible with democratic government to allow the meaning of a statute to be determined by what the judges think the lawgivers meant rather than by what the legislature actually promulgated. Eschewing the judicial lawmaking that is the essence of common law, judges should interpret statutes and regulations by focusing on the text itself. Scalia then extends this principle to constitutional law. He proposes that we abandon the notion of an everchanging Constitution and pay attention to the Constitution's original meaning. Although not subscribing to the “strict constructionism” that would prevent applying the Constitution to modern circumstances, Scalia emphatically rejects the idea that judges can properly “smuggle” in new rights or deny old rights by using the Due Process Clause, for instance. In fact, such judicial discretion might lead to the destruction of the Bill of Rights if a majority of the judges ever wished to reach that most undesirable of goals. This essay is followed by four commentaries by Professors Gordon Wood, Laurence Tribe, Mary Ann Glendon, and Ronald Dworkin, who engage Justice Scalia’s ideas about judicial interpretation from varying standpoints. In the spirit of debate, Justice Scalia responds to these critics. Featuring a new foreword that discusses Scalia’s impact, jurisprudence, and legacy, this witty and trenchant exchange illuminates the brilliance of one of the most influential legal minds of our time.

The Court and the World

Author: Stephen Breyer
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 1101912073
Format: PDF, Kindle
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"In this original, far-reaching, and timely book, Justice Stephen Breyer examines the work of the Supreme Court of the United States in an increasingly interconnected world, a world in which all sorts of activity, both public and private--from the conduct of national security policy to the conduct of international trade--obliges the Court to understand and consider circumstances beyond America's borders. It is a world of instant communications, lightning-fast commerce, and shared problems (like public health threats and environmental degradation), and it is one in which the lives of Americans are routinely linked ever more pervasively to those of people in foreign lands. Indeed, at a moment when anyone may engage in direct transactions internationally for services previously bought and sold only locally (lodging, for instance, through online sites), it has become clear that, even in ordinary matters, judicial awareness can no longer stop at the water's edge. To trace how foreign considerations have come to inform the thinking of the Court, Justice Breyer begins with that area of the law in which they have always figured prominently: national security in its constitutional dimension--how should the Court balance this imperative with others, chiefly the protection of basic liberties, in its review of presidential and congressional actions? He goes on to show that as the world has grown steadily "smaller," the Court's horizons have inevitably expanded: it has been obliged to consider a great many more matters that now cross borders. What is the geographical reach of an American statute concerning, say, securities fraud, antitrust violations, or copyright protections? And in deciding such matters, can the Court interpret American laws so that they might work more efficiently with similar laws in other nations? While Americans must necessarily determine their own laws through democratic process, increasingly, the smooth operation of American law--and, by extension, the advancement of American interests and values--depends on its working in harmony with that of other jurisdictions. Justice Breyer describes how the aim of cultivating such harmony, as well as the expansion of the rule of law overall, with its attendant benefits, has drawn American jurists into the relatively new role of "constitutional diplomats," a little remarked but increasingly important job for them in this fast-changing world."--Publisher's description.

Law Pragmatism and Democracy

Author: Richard A. Posner
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674042292
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Richard Posner argues for a conception of the liberal state based on pragmatic theories of government. He views the actions of elected officials as guided by interests rather than by reason and the decisions of judges by discretion rather than by rules. He emphasizes the institutional and material, rather than moral and deliberative, factors in democratic decision making. Posner argues that democracy is best viewed as a competition for power by means of regular elections. Citizens should not be expected to play a significant role in making complex public policy regarding, say, taxes or missile defense.

Regulation and Its Reform

Author: Stephen G. BREYER
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674753761
Format: PDF, ePub
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Develops a theory of trade regulation, shows the kinds of problems that can occur when the wrong type of controls are placed on an industry, and suggests an approach for modifying regulatory policies

Economic Reasoning and Judicial Review

Author: Stephen G. Breyer
Publisher: American Enterprise Institute
ISBN: 9780844771755
Format: PDF, Kindle
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The judicial review of regulatory agencies' decisions, and of statutory enactments with important economic content, presents unique and persistent problems. These decisions are often technical and complex, and the judicial review is usually performed by non-specialists who often seek to provide clear rules and predictability, not case-by-case economic balancing of their own. Sound economic policy requires a balancing of both costs and benefits and demand and supply. In Economic Reasoning and Judicial Review (AEI Press, March 2004)--an essay first presented in December 2003 as the AEI-Brookings Joint Center for Regulatory Studies' 2003 Distinguished Lecture--Stephen G. Breyer, Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court, discusses these dilemmas in the context of recent Supreme Court decisions and offers suggestions for addressing them. In order to bring economic reasoning to bear in legal fields, such as antitrust law, intellectual property law, and economic regulation, Justice Breyer recommends the following: The law must take into greater consideration the underlying human purposes of the law, rather than simply favor strict legal categories. Courts should consider using independent experts for economic reasoning in technical areas rather than sending judges to economic seminars. These experts should understand the role that administrative considerations, such as the need for rules, play in the law. Given the law's reluctance to rely upon novel approaches, institutions outside the judiciary should debate and adopt economic methods for the courts to model. The legal process, Justice Breyer argues, "is too important to be left simply to the legal specialists, to the lawyers, or even to the judges." Those with basic economic or regulatory policymaking expertise need to participate in the judicial process. Whether serving as experts in individual cases or informed court watchers and critics, these experts can help lawyers and judges understand the tools of analysis and encourage their use. Justice Breyer has long been a leader in the quest to build a rational consensus on the appropriate role of government intervention in a market-based economy. As counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee, he was one of the chief architects of airline deregulation. As a Harvard University law professor and a Supreme Court Justice, he has made seminal contributions to the understanding of social and economic regulation, copyright law, and administrative law. Justice Breyer is the author of Regulation and Its Reform (Harvard, 1992) and Breaking the Vicious Circle: Toward Effective Risk Regulation (Harvard, 1993).

Making Our Democracy Work

Author: Stephen G. Breyer
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307390837
Format: PDF, Docs
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A Supreme Court justice outlines an accessible profile of the legislative branch's duties that explains its responsibility to safeguard the public while ensuring the cooperation of other government branches, sharing the stories behind key historical decisions. By the author of Active Liberty. Reprint. A best-selling book.

America s Supreme Court

Author: Stephen Breyer
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0199606730
Format: PDF, Docs
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"Published in the US under the title Making our democracy work"--T.p. verso.