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Featured Acquisitions - April 2014

 

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Fragile by Design: The Political Origins of Banking Crises and Scarce Credit by Charles W. Calomiris and Stephen H. Haber
Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 2014
Basement HG1561 .C35 2014

Why are banking systems unstable in so many countries--but not in others? The United States has had twelve systemic banking crises since 1840, while Canada has had none. The banking systems of Mexico and Brazil have not only been crisis prone but have provided miniscule amounts of credit to business enterprises and households. Analyzing the political and banking history of the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Brazil through several centuries, Fragile by Design demonstrates that chronic banking crises and scarce credit are not accidents due to unforeseen circumstances. Rather, these fluctuations result from the complex bargains made between politicians, bankers, bank shareholders, depositors, debtors, and taxpayers. The well-being of banking systems depends on the abilities of political institutions to balance and limit how coalitions of these various groups influence government regulations. Fragile by Design is a revealing exploration of the ways that politics inevitably intrudes into bank regulation. Charles Calomiris and Stephen Haber combine political history and economics to examine how coalitions of politicians, bankers, and other interest groups form, why some endure while others are undermined, and how they generate policies that determine who gets to be a banker, who has access to credit, and who pays for bank bailouts and rescues.


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Fixing US International Taxation by Daniel N. Shaviro
New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2014
Balcony KF6499.I57 S53 2014

International tax rules, which determine how countries tax cross-border investment, are increasingly important with the rise of globalization, but the modern U.S. rules, even more than those in most other countries, are widely recognized as dysfunctional. The existing debate over how to reform the U.S. tax rules is stuck in a sterile dialectic, in which ostensibly the only permissible choices are worldwide or residence-based taxation of U.S. companies with the allowance of foreign tax credits, versus outright exemption of the companies' foreign source income. In Fixing U.S. International Taxation, Daniel N. Shaviro explains why neither of these solutions addresses the fundamental problem at hand, and he proposes a new reformulation of the existing framework from first principles. He shows that existing international tax policy frameworks are misguided insofar as they treat "double taxation" and "double non-taxation" as the key issues, conflate the distinct questions of what tax rate to impose on foreign source income and how to treat foreign taxes, and use simplistic single-bullet global welfare norms in lieu of a comprehensive analysis. Drawing on tools that are familiar from public economics and trade policy, but that have been under-utilized in the international tax realm, Shaviro offers a better analysis that not only reshapes our understanding of the underlying issues, but might point the way to substantially improving the prevailing rules, both in the U.S. and around the world.


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The Civic Constitution: Civic Visions and Struggles in the Path Toward Constitutional Democracy by Elizabeth Beaumont
New York : Oxford University Press, 2014
Balcony KF4541 .B43 2014

The role of the Constitution in American political history is contentious not simply because of battles over meaning. Equally important is precisely who participated in contests over meaning. Was it simply judges, or did legislatures have a strong say? And what about the public's role in effecting constitutional change? In The Civic Constitution, Elizabeth Beaumont focuses on the last category, and traces the efforts of citizens to reinvent constitutional democracy during four crucial eras: the revolutionaries of the 1770s and 1780s; the civic founders of state republics and the national Constitution in the early national period; abolitionists during the antebellum and Civil War eras; and, finally, suffragists of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Throughout, she argues that these groups should be recognized as founders and co-founders of the U.S. Constitution. Though often slighted in modern constitutional debates, these women and men developed distinctive constitutional creeds and practices, challenged existing laws and social norms, expanded the boundaries of citizenship, and sought to translate promises of liberty, equality, and justice into more robust and concrete forms. Their civic ideals and struggles not only shaped the text, design, and public meaning of the U.S. Constitution, but reconstructed its membership and transformed the fundamental commitments of the American political community. An innovative expansion on the concept of popular constitutionalism, The Civic Constitution is a vital contribution to the growing body of literature on how ordinary people have shaped the parameters of America's fundamental laws.


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A Contemporary Concept of Monetary Sovereignty by Claus D. Zimmermann
Oxford, United Kingdom; New York: Oxford University Press, 2013
Balcony K4430 .Z56 2013

Monetary sovereignty is a crucial legal concept dictating that states have sovereignty over their own monetary and fiscal affairs. However, it does not feature as part of any key instruments of international law, including the Articles of Agreement of the International Monetary Fund. Rather, it has remained a somewhat separate notion, developed from an assertion of the former Permanent Court of International Justice in 1929. As a consequence of globalization and increasing financial integration, promoted by organizations such as the European Union and the International Monetary Fund, the principle of monetary sovereignty has undergone significant change. This book examines this evolution in detail, and provides a conceptual framework to demonstrate what this means for the legal and economic challenges facing the international community. The book examines the origins and evolution of the concept of monetary sovereignty, putting it into the context of broader concepts of sovereignty. It argues that monetary sovereignty remains relevant as a dynamic legal concept with both positive and normative components. It investigates the ongoing hybridization of international monetary law resulting from changes to its formal and material sources. It then examines the complex phenomenon of exchange rate misalignment under international monetary and trade law, and the increasing regionalization of monetary sovereignty. Finally, it assesses the role monetary sovereignty can play in the reorganization of international finance following the recent financial crisis.


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Tolerating Intolerance: The Price of Protecting Extremism by Amos N. Guiora
New York: Oxford University Press, 2014
Balcony K3242 .G85 2014

Over the years, numerous tragic events serve as a reminder of the extraordinary power of extremism, both on a religious and secular level. As extremism confronts society on a daily basis, it is essential to analyze, comprehend, and define it. It is also essential to define extremism narrowly in order to avoid the danger of recklessly castigating for mere thoughts alone. Tolerating Intolerance provides readers with a focused definition of extremism, and articulates the tensions faced in casting an arbitrary, capricious net in an effort to protect society, while offering mechanisms to resolve its seemingly intractable conundrum. Professor Guiora examines extremism in six different countries: Germany, Israel, the Netherlands, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States through interviews with a wide range of individuals including academics, policy makers, faith leaders, public commentators, national security and law enforcement officials. This enables both an in-depth discussion of extremism in each country, and facilitates a comparative analysis regarding both religious and secular extremism.


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World War I Law and Lawyers: Issues, Cases and Characters by Thomas J. Shaw
Chicago, Illinois: American Bar Association, 2014
Balcony K124.W36 S53 2014

The global story of the legal side of WWI and its legacy is now told in this new book. Eighty legal issues are identified from this war, ranging from the ancient rights of kings to deploying modern technology like airplanes and poison gases, from mutiny to blockade, from supplying and funding wars to suppressing dissent, from starving or deporting civilians to executing or ignoring soldiers, and from the impacts on living beings to the impacts on nations. In addition to presenting the story behind these legal issues from across the globe, the book provides practical assistance by linking many of these issues to modern application. This book has something for each type of reader: the lawyer, fans of history and the general reader.


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Getting Incentives Right: Improving Torts, Contracts, and Restitution by Robert D. Cooter and Ariel Porat
Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 2014
Balcony KF1250 .C66 2014

Lawyers, judges, and scholars have long debated whether incentives in tort, contract, and restitution law effectively promote the welfare of society. If these incentives were ideal, tort law would reduce the cost and frequency of accidents, contract law would lubricate transactions, and restitution law would encourage people to benefit others. Unfortunately, the incentives in these laws lead to too many injuries, too little contractual cooperation, and too few unrequested benefits. Getting Incentives Right explains how law might better serve the social good. In tort law, Robert Cooter and Ariel Porat propose that all foreseeable risks should be included when setting standards of care and awarding damages. Failure to do so causes accidents that better legal incentives would avoid. In contract law, they show that making a promise often causes the person who receives it to change behavior and undermine the cooperation between the parties. They recommend several solutions, including a novel contract called "anti-insurance." In restitution law, people who convey unrequested benefits to others are seldom entitled to compensation. Restitution law should compensate them more than it currently does, so that they will provide more unrequested benefits. In these three areas of law, Getting Incentives Right demonstrates that better law can promote the well-being of people by providing better incentives for the private regulation of conduct.


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A Friend in the Music Business: The ASCAP Story by Bruce Pollock
Milwaukee, WI: Hal Leonard Books, 2014
Basement ML3790 .P66 2014

On February 13, 1914, a group of the nation's most distinguished and popular songwriters gathered together in New York City to support the mission of ASCAP, a new organization for publishers and songwriters. A few years later, ASCAP received its mandate from the Supreme Court to collect royalties for the public performance of copyrighted material. Over the course of the next century, ASCAP has been as prominent a force for the advancement and nurture and financial well-being of songwriters as any record label or publishing outfit one would care to name. With a responsive board of directors made up entirely of songwriter/composer and publisher members, ASCAP has defended creators' rights at every turn against those who would seek to devalue music. Today, with copyright under renewed assault, its mission is as resonant and vital as ever, along with its relatively new role as a nurturer of the young artists who represent the future of music. Award-winning music writer Bruce Pollock explores the growth and changes within this complex society and its relationship to emerging technologies, in the context of 100 years of an ever-evolving music business, to see how ASCAP has become, for those who hope to make a living making music, now more than ever, "a friend in the music business."


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How to Write a Sentence: And How to Read One by Stanley Fish
New York: Harper, 2011
Request PE1441 .F57 2011

Some appreciate fine art; others appreciate fine wines. Stanley Fish appreciates fine sentences. The New York Times columnist and world-class professor has long been an aficionado of language. Like a seasoned sportscaster, Fish marvels at the adeptness of finely crafted sentences and breaks them down into digestible morsels, giving readers an instant play-by-play. In this entertaining and erudite gem, Fish offers both sentence craft and sentence pleasure, skills invaluable to any writer (or reader). How to Write a Sentence is both a spirited love letter to the written word and a key to understanding how great writing works; it is a book that will stand the test of time.


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Justified: The Complete First Season
Culver City, Calif.: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, 2011
Media Display PN1997 .J87 2011

Justified is an American television drama series developed by Graham Yost. It is based on Elmore Leonard's novels Pronto (1993) and Riding the Rap (1995), and his short story "Fire in the Hole". Its main character is Raylan Givens, a deputy U.S. Marshal. Timothy Olyphant portrays Givens, a tough federal lawman, enforcing his own brand of justice in his Kentucky hometown. The series is set in the city of Lexington, Kentucky, and the hill country of eastern Kentucky, specifically in and around Harlan.