First Lecture: 8/18/95












III. General argument: Property rights are more or less desirable depending on issues such as commons cost in creating, enforcement cost on boundaries, transaction costs in exchanging.


IV. Explaining/Justifying the Law?


I: Coasian carpool lanes. How do we deal with the externality of congestion? When I decide to drive at rush hour, I slow traffic, imposing costs on other drivesrs.

II. Why have contract law?


III. Filling out missing terms (arbitrator or court).


IV. Details (default rules)


IV. Insurance--some fine points.


V. Why do the courts construe an insurance contract against insured?

VI. Information and Incentives: Laidlaw v Organ

VII. Consumer fraud, liability, etc.

VII. Damages

VIII. Self-help remedies: Things you can do without going to court first, such as not delivering when the goods are not paid for.

I. Contracts, a summary.


II. Divorce: Lloyd Cohen article.


III. Why has marriage become a less stable contract over the past century?


IV. Other economics of Marriage


V. Public Schooling: What are the economic arguments for it?


VI. Baby market:

VII. It is often claimed that, when I have a child, I impose net costs on others, so that leaving people free to decide how many children they have will result in overpopulation.

VIII. Regulation of Sex. Why do we do it? Adultery laws, fornication laws, ...


I. Tort law: My sketch


II. Posner's treatment.

III. Products liability:


IV. Causation complications:


V. Why pay tort damages to the victim?


VI. Loss of earning capacity, death, injury.


VII. Insurance issues:


VIII. Calabresi and Melamed.


I. Criminal Law:

I. Antitrust Law.


October 30, 1995


II. Regulation by well meaning regulators.


III. Theory of Regulation: Becker model of politics.

I. The Economics of Judicial Lawmaking


II. The Economics of procedure:


I. Incentive incompatibility in the criminal law: Becker and Stigler

II. The impossibility of efficient private enforcement: Landes and Posner


III. Efficient institutions for private enforcement:


IV. Bottom line: Less clear than Posner thinks, but ...

V. Why is blackmail illegal?


I. Private Law: Ellickson


II. Iceland


III. 18th century England




I. The economic approach can be applied to virtually all of law; areas we have covered include:


II. Our treatment of those areas, however, has been relatively shallow


III. The economic approach employs a bunch of concepts, interlinked with each other and each applicable to many different legal issues. For instance:

Final Lecture


I. Economics:


II. Property.

III. Contract


IV. Family law. Marriage as a long term contract.


V. Tort Law: Coase and Pigou again.


VI. Products liability.


VII. Criminal Law


VII. Antitrust.


VIII. Becker model of politics.


IX. Economics of lawmaking.


X. Private vs public enforcement.

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