Wednesday, August 13, 2014

So What Exactly is "The Law"?

This is a rarely addressed, incredibly important question, a proper answer to which contains many surprising implications and observations.  If you've a interest in this topic, let me recommend a very recent EconTalk episode in which host Russ Roberts interviews legal scholar and historian Barry Weingast.  Here's the description of the podcast:
Weingast takes issue with some of the standard views of law, and proposes a better way to understand law. The two discuss the fundamental principles of law, how it can emerge in a decentralized way to resolve disputes over property and other commercial and social interactions. Examples include Iceland, Ancient Greece, and California during the gold rush. Also considered are how laws coordinate expectations and the way that social pressure can be used to enforce law in a decentralized fashion.
Click here to access the website for the link to the podcast.