11.26.2010

All Factors Considered

There is a general reservation about utilizing the hard sciences to influence legal decisions.  One consistent point of opposition is the inequity that can result from applying rigid, artificial rules to persistently human fact patterns.  Thus, in majority, the law has worked to establish standards, often guided by rules, as a flexible alternative.  The negligence formula outlined by Judge Learned Hand is a rule that has been utilized to establish a duty of care in tort law.  As noted below, the variables within the Hand formula have been applied liberally to account for a wide range of public policy considerations that often modify the underlying mathematical logic.  This post is a placeholder for a future essay advocating that the objectivity and value of the Hand formula can be increased by utilizing hard science to calculate the variables and social science to modify the result.




~Dedicated to Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) 

11.09.2010

Definitive Snow Cones

The law has a way of making relatively simple concepts uniquely difficult to grasp at first glance.  Analyzing the jurisdiction of federal courts, i.e., their right and power to apply the law, is of this type.  After a complete review, it seems that a definitive illustration is in order to capture the moment.  The following is presented for your consideration.  It presents the relative factors that the courts must consider before deciding, with increasing finality, that they have the power make a decision.




~Dedicated to International Shoe Co. v. State of Washington, 326 U.S. 310 (1945)