Posted by: Patrick Allen Foster | July 6, 2013

Some Papers I Noticed: Immigration, Election Law, Freedom of Expression in Asia, etc.

1. Dani Rodrik, “The Past, Present, and Future of Economic Growth”: “Developing countries will face stronger headwinds in the decades ahead, both because the global
economy is likely to be significantly less buoyant than in recent decades and because technological changes are rendering manufacturing more capital and skill intensive. Desirable policies will continue to share features that have served successful countries well in the past, but growth strategies will differ in their emphasis. Ultimately, growth will depend primarily on what happens at home. The challenge is therefore to design an architecture that respects the domestic priorities of individual countries while ensuring that major cross-border spillovers and global public goods are addressed.”

For a shorter form of some of these ideas, see this post by Prof. Rodrik. See also this New York Times op-ed by Tyler Cowen.

2. Adrienne Stone, Rishad Chowdhury, and Martin Clark, “The Comparative Constitutional Law of Freedom of Expression in Asia”: “the distinctive political and constitutional cultures of four Asian countries – Japan, Singapore, Malaysia and India – affect the articulation of freedom of expression principles by courts in those countries. Rather than attempting an exhaustive analysis of particular categories of freedom of expression protection and limitations in each of these four jurisdictions, our analysis will draw out particular aspects of protections and limitations that help to illustrate the broader constitutional cultures in each of these jurisdictions.” (H/T: Lawrence Solum.)

3. Eric Rasmusen, “How Immigration Can Hurt a Country”: “It is by no means clear that immigration helps a country’s citizens, even apart from issues of crime and use of public benefits. It is crucial to determine whether immigration puts so much pressure on xed inputs to production that the extra domestic product fails to reward domestic owners of labor complements (e.g., capital) more than it hurts domestic owners of labor substitutes (e.g., labor itself). More specifically, if the immigrants put pressure on national infrastructure but are not taxed at rate higher than natives, the natives in effect are giving away the infrastructure to the immigrants. If natives are richer than immigrants and the tax system is progressive, the result is even worse for the natives. If we go beyond the models of this paper and consider what happens if immigrants are more costly than natives in terms of government spending, that only compounds the negative effect coming from their adverse influence on average productivity.” (H/T: Marginal Revolution.)

4. Kirsten Nussbaumer, “The Election Law Connection and U.S. Federalism”: “this article offers a sketch of how the unique character of U.S. election law may have shaped U.S. federalism as a whole — hypothesizing that the extent to which each level of government has controlled the other’s electoral arena may have partly determined each government’s relative policy autonomy, and thereby impinged upon the direct constituency relationship between each level of government and its voters. … The argument — while offered as an exercise in deductive theory-building more than empirical conclusion — is illustrated with recent election-law examples, especially intergovernmental communications about congressional redistricting that exhibit patterns of federal-to-state lobbying (a decentralized or ‘downward’ pattern not previously considered in the scholarly literatures).” (H/T: Rick Hasen.)

5. William Baude, “Rethinking the Federal Eminent Domain Power”: “From the Founding until the Civil War, the federal government was thought to have an eminent domain power only within the District of Columbia and the territories—but not within states. Politicians and judges (including in two Supreme Court decisions) repeatedly denied the existence of such a power, and when the federal government did need to take land, it relied on state cooperation to do so. People during this period refused to infer a federal eminent domain power from Congress’s enumerated powers or the Necessary and Proper Clause because they viewed it as a “great power”—one that was too important to be left to implication. And they refused to infer it from the Takings Clause either, because the Clause was not intended to expand Congress’s power beyond the District and territories.” (H/T: Gerard Magliocca, Concurring Opinions.)

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