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Weekly Roundup: March 28


At the Blog

On Monday, Christopher Essert followed up on last week’s post about Grants Pass v. Johnson by stepping back from the case to reflect on a pair of broader questions that it presupposes: What, exactly, is the problem of homelessness? And what is the relationship between this problem and the law? On the first score, he follows Jeremy Waldron in holding that to be homeless is not merely to suffer from unmet needs – to be cold or hungry or exposed – but also to be unfree. Specifically, he argues, “it is to lack a space where it’s up to you what happens, where you are the one whose legal rights determine what others can do.” Seen this way, it is clear what causes homelessness: our system of property rights. Given this, he argues, any state that imposes a system of private property is obligated to ensure that all of its subjects have homes of their own.

On Tuesday, we took our horse to that old town road, and asked six tech and regulatory experts to share their initial reactions to the pending TikTok legislation. The responses – by Ganesh Sitaraman, Sanjay Jolly, Zephyr Teachout, Nikolas Guggenberger, Anupam Chander, and Elettra Bietti – offered a wide range of perspectives and helpful insights. A must-read for anyone thinking through this complex terrain.

And on Thursday, Meredith Whittaker continued the discussion, taking the divide over the recent TikTok legislation as an opportunity to reflect on a more fundamental question: how should we think about regulating social media platforms at a time of rising illiberalism in the United States? In a post that offers several challenging and thought-provoking analyses for legal scholars, Whittaker argues that liberals and those on the left have been too quick to downplay threats to speech and expression from government control, in part because they underestimate the rising tide of illiberalism and what awaits in 2025 and beyond.

In LPE Land

Are you a law student who has dreamed of working as a student editor for the LPE Blog? Well, what are you waiting for: the application deadline for 2024-2025 is this coming Monday (April 1).

On Tuesday, April 2, Jedidiah Kroncke will be in conversation with Aslı Ü. Bâli (at Yale and online), discussing his recent work on “Territorial Labor and American Empire: A History of Democratic Avoidance and Constitutional Enervation.”

On Thursday, April 4, LPE Night School will hold its fourth session (at the New School and online): “Law and Marxism,” a conversation between Rafael Khachaturian and Igor Shoikhedbrod.

With the sentencing of Sam Bankman-Fried, it’s worth revisiting what Raúl Carrillo wrote upon his conviction: “This isn’t a victory for the government, much less ‘the people,’ by any meaningful metric.”

In Phenomenal World, Sanjukta Paul discusses planning, market coordination, and the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933. (We’re not jealous, you’re jealous!)

In the America Prospect, Moe Tkacik describes the complaint filed against Boeing by the whistleblower who was found dead a few weeks ago. Entry 4,523,323 in MBAs hollowing out once great companies.

In the Sling, Bryce Tuttle argues that gig workers should be allowed to organize, and explains how the FTC and DOJ can help make it happen.

And in the NYT, Felicia Wong explains why taxing the wealthiest is not just essential, but good politics right now.