Category Archives: Articles

News Coverage: “Uber For Welfare”

News Coverage: Cesar Conda and Derek Khanna, “Uber For Welfare” – Politico

New Article: “Property Rebels: Reclaiming Abandoned, Bank-Owned Homes For Community Uses”

New Article: Valerie Schneider, “Property Rebels: Reclaiming Abandoned, Bank-Owned Homes For Community Uses,” 65 Am. U. L. Rev. 399 (August 24, 2015).

New Article: “Should the Law Do Anything About Economic Inequality?”

New Article: Matthew Dimick, Should the Law Do Anything About Economic Inequality?, SSRN Jan. 2016.  Abstract below:

What should be done about rising income and wealth inequality? Should the design and adoption of legal rules take into account their effects on the distribution of income and wealth? Or should the tax-and-transfer system be the exclusive means to address concerns about inequality? A widely-held view argues for the latter: only the tax system, and not the legal system, should be used to redistribute income. While this argument comes in a variety of normative arguments and has support across the political spectrum, there is also a well-known law-and-economics version. This argument, known as the “double-distortion” argument, is simply stated. Legal rules that redistribute income only add to the economic distortions that are already present in the tax system. It would therefore be better for everyone, and especially the poor, to instead adopt an efficient, nonredistributive legal rule, and increase redistribution through the tax system.

This Article challenges the double-distortion argument from a law-and-economics perspective. There are two main arguments, in addition to several other subsidiary points. First, in the abstract, there is no reason to believe that legal rules that have redistributive effects will always reduce efficiency; indeed, they can sometimes increase efficiency. Examples from the regulation of product markets, labor markets, and financial markets underscore this claim. In these cases, legal redistribution is more efficient than redistribution through the tax system. Second, legal rules are likely to be more attractive than taxation precisely in cases where inequality itself or normative concerns about inequality is high. Under the optimal tax policy, higher inequality or greater concern about inequality will justify larger tax distortions. Therefore, a particular legal rule is more likely to be more efficient than the optimal tax policy under these circumstances. The ultimate conclusion is that a mix of legal rules and taxation, rather than taxation exclusively, will be the best way to address economic inequality.

New Article: “Marriage, Poverty, And The Political Divide”

New Article: Andrew L. Yarrow, “Marriage, Poverty, and the Political Divide“-The New York Times

New Article: “Will Inequality Ever Stop Growing”

New Article: “Will Inequality Ever Stop Growing?” – The Atlantic

New Article: “By 2050, There Could Be As Many As 25 Million Poor Elderly Americans”

New Article: “By 2050, There Could Be As Many As 25 Million Poor Elderly Americans” – The Atlantic

New Article: “All Hollowed Out”

New Article: “All Hollowed Out” – The Atlantic

New Article: “Promise Zones, Poverty, and the Future of Public Schools: Confronting the Challenges of Socioeconomic Integration & School Culture in High-Poverty Schools”

New Article: Maurice R. Dyson, Promise Zones, Poverty, and the Future of Public Schools: Confronting the Challenges of Socioeconomic Integration & School Culture in High-Poverty Schools, 2014 Mich. St. L. Rev. 711 (2014).

New Article: “Giving as Governance? Philanthrocapitalism and Modern-Day Slavery Abolitionism”

New Article: Janie Chuang, Giving as Governance? Philanthrocapitalism and Modern-Day Slavery Abolitionism, 62 UCLA L. Rev. 1516 (2015).  Abstract below:

This Essay examines the potential influence of a new breed of actor in the global antitrafficking arena: the venture philanthropist, or “philanthrocapitalist.” Philanthrocapitalists have already helped rebrand “trafficking” as “modern-day slavery,” and have expressed their ambitions to lead global efforts to eradicate the problem. With their deep financial resources and access to powerful networks, philanthrocapitalists hold tremendous power to shape the future trajectory of the antitrafficking movement. This Essay warns, however, against the possibility that philanthrocapitalists could also reconfigure the landscape of global antitrafficking policymaking, marginalizing or even displacing other actors’ efforts to address the problem.

[Note, though this is framed as a trafficking article, it might also interest others working on the impact directed giving can have on charitable missions/work.]

New Article: “Rethinking The Sales Tax Food Exclusion With SNAP Benefits”

New Article: Anna Johnson & Steven M. Sheffrin, Rethinking The Sales Tax Food Exclusion With SNAP Benefits, 79 State Tax Notes 149 (Jan. 11, 2016).  Abstract below:

Most states either totally or partially exclude food at home from the general sales tax. This exclusion generates a debate between tax policy analysts with their emphasis on broad base, low-rate tax systems against the advocates for the poor who argue that the exemption for food is necessary on distributional grounds. States that do tax food at home are often singled out as having particularly regressive and punitive tax systems. What is missing from this debate is a serious discussion of the consequences of non-taxability of benefits under the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (food stamps). We present evidence that the SNAP program effectively reaches the vast majority of the poor thus making the taxability of food at home much less important for individuals in lower income tiers.

-Thanks to http://taxprof.typepad.com/ for the heads up!