Pretty much the most interesting blog on the Internet.— Prof. Steven Landsburg

Once you get past the title, and the subtitle, and the equations, and the foreign quotes, and the computer code, and the various hapax legomena, a solid 50% English content!—The Proprietor

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Why the Author Is a Lawyer, Not An Economist

Richard Epstein and Angie Harmon

The titular question is one sometimes asked of this author. For it was through his interest in economics, including the reading of the works of the economist depicted on the left, that he first had an inkling that law might be a suitable profession.The works of the other person depicted also admittedly had an influence. While the author many years later had the good fortune to meet and work with the person on the left, he has not been so fortunate with respect to the person on the right.

Indeed, many years ago the author seriously wrestled with the question of whether to obtain a doctorate in economics or go to law school.Interestingly, one of the authors on the blogroll found himself in the same situation some years earlier. What ultimately moved the author to choose law school is a curious failing of economists:

Economists, your cartel is awful! Lawyers, meanwhile, as one would expect given their power and political connections, have one of the best cartels. One could say the same about medical doctors. But even humble cosmetologists have managed to prevail upon the powers that be to grant something of a lawful cartel. So why can’t economists get their act together?

So one went to law school and there, on the advice of a fellow student,It occurs that one has never properly thanked that fellow student, friend, and occasional reader and subject of this blog. So, if you are reading this, Matt, thank you! took the classes that lead one to a career in economics-heavy areas of law: antitrust and energy. As such one has spent many a productive year practicing economics with a bit of law on the side, even while regarded as a lawyer.

During all these years, not once did one have to fear that one’s lack of an economics license would cause the powers of the American Economics Association to set their thugs on one. However, were any of its members to so much as draft up a simple will, they can rest assured that the full might of the organized bar will promptly descend upon them to defend our lawful privileges.This one of the rare, proper uses of the term privilege.