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News@Law, 10/06/2017

News@Law is a selection of the day's news clips regarding Harvard Law School.
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Today's News

The New York Times
Courts Thwart Administration’s Effort to Rescind Obama-Era Environmental Regulations
The rapid-fire push by the Trump administration to wipe out significant chunks of the Obama environmental legacy is running into a not-so-minor complication: Judges keep ruling that the Trump team is violating federal law...Policy experts say the reversals also underscore the fact that crucial positions within the E.P.A. and the Interior Department remain unfilled, and that a lack of trust exists between political appointees and career staff members. “The career people at E.P.A. and D.O.J. are top-notch lawyers,” said Richard J. Lazarus, an environmental law professor at Harvard University. “But you have political people come in, and they don’t trust them at all and try to do it without them.”
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The Boston Globe
If the elites go down, we’re all in trouble
...For decades, many logical, rational people ignored the crusade against elites because it was built on such an obviously illogical, irrational premise. Instead of engaging political opponents in an honest debate about issues troubling the nation, it sought to silence those opponents simply by presenting them as members of an effete, out-of-touch, know-it-all elite...Before she was a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Harvard professor, and ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power was an immigrant kid from Ireland growing up in Georgia. “If I had stayed in Georgia and not gone off to Yale and Harvard Law School and been blessed to have this amazing but, in its way, removed education, maybe I would be better at selling our climate change policies to the skeptics I grew up with,” she tells me. “We’ve got to find a way to translate these important issues into terms that can build public support in red and blue communities.”
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Bloomberg
How Justice Kennedy Could Give Both Parties a Win
An op-ed by Noah Feldman. Justice Anthony Kennedy’s comments during oral arguments in the partisan gerrymander case, Gill v. Whitford, are fueling speculation that he might provide the decisive fifth vote for a historic decision that could reshape electoral politics. If he does, however, that could spell trouble for gay-rights advocates who also need Kennedy’s vote in the wedding cake case, Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. As the U.S. Supreme Court’s swing voter, Kennedy has a habit of issuing major liberal decisions alongside outcomes that read as conservative -- all the while considering himself internally consistent.
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Bloomberg
How the Court Can Challenge Extreme Gerrymandering
An op-ed by Cass Sunstein. The partisan gerrymandering case argued this week in the Supreme Court presents one of the most important, difficult and intriguing legal questions of the last quarter century. The constitutional issue in the case, coming out of Wisconsin, is whether and when courts should invalidate redistricting plans that are designed to give a strong advantage to one political party. In extreme cases, such plans are an obvious violation of the Constitution. The problem is that it’s not at all obvious how courts can police them.
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Financial Times
The MBA is a Grand Tour in the age of Airbnb
...It has been a long time coming, but the one or two-year MBA course feels like the Grand Tour of business education in an age of Airbnb. Its graduates are being crowned with powdered wigs just as the digital revolutionaries are sharpening the guillotine...In his new book The Wisdom of Finance, [Mihir Desai] writes about how many of his MBA students avoid risk in order to retain their “optionality”, a concept they had picked up from finance. They “end up,” Prof Desai says, “remaining in companies . . . that were initially intended as way stations that would create more optionality on the path to their actual entrepreneurial, social, or political goals. They often end up saying to themselves, ‘Why not stay another year and create more options for down the road?’ The tool that was supposed to lead to more risk-taking ends up preventing it.”
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The Boston Pilot
Hundreds march for life on Boston Common
Hundreds of pro-life supporters stopped traffic around the Boston Common as they marched, sang, and prayed during the 2017 Massachusetts March for Life on Oct. 1. Hosted by Massachusetts Citizens for Life, the event began at 1 p.m. with a rally at the Parkman Bandstand in Boston Common. The rally included live praise and worship music and a series of pro-life speakers...Other marchers included members of the Harvard Law Students for Life. "I think that this is the most important social justice issue of our time," said Steven Obiajulu [`18], a Harvard Law student and member of the group.
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Washington Examiner
Republicans struggle with plan to stop companies from leaving the US
One key question looming over the Republican tax proposal is how it will keep companies from fleeing the U.S., the same problem that has pressured Republicans and Democrats to seek action and that President Trump has frequently pledged to fix. The uptick in corporate "inversions" and foreign takeovers, turning U.S. companies into Canadian, Irish and English businesses, has proved the top incentive for Congress to take on the monumental effort of overhauling the tax code...Stephen Shay, a Harvard Law School tax expert and former corporate tax lawyer, noted that if the global minimum tax is applied to corporations' total overseas profits, multinationals could game the system..."People like myself in my prior career can blend high and low rates, and in some cases this will incentivize foreign investment," Shay told senators.
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Big Think
Libertarian Paternalism: Eat Well, Retire Rich, and Feel the Freedom (video)
One of the best policies in America might just have the worst name: libertarian paternalism. Fortunately it's better known as 'nudge theory', and it has saved billions of dollars, huge numbers of lives, and subtly increased the nation's standard of living. How does it do all that? Harvard Law School professor Cass Sunstein explains that libertarian paternalism uses tested behavioral science to present people with choices that could improve their lives.
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The Washington Post
Russian propaganda may have been shared hundreds of millions of times, new research says
Facebook has said ads bought by Russian operatives reached 10 million of its users. But does that include everyone reached by the information operation? Couldn’t the Russians also have created simple — and free — Facebook posts and hoped they went viral? And if so, how many times were these messages seen by Facebook’s massive user base? The answers to those questions, which social media analyst Jonathan Albright studied for a research document he posted online Thursday, are: No. Yes. And hundreds of millions — perhaps many billions — of times...Albright, who also is a faculty associate at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, has been studying fake news and Russian propaganda for months.
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