Saturday, January 11, 2003
Being chiefly an antitrust and securities lawyer, my original idea was to publish a blog on developments in business litigation. Upon quick reflection, I concluded that something less ambitious in scope and more flexible in direction was more likely to sustain ongoing interest and effort. Finding relationships among seemingly unrelated ideas is an abiding interest, and a frequent thread in such explorations is the use and misuse of information, particularly the application of scientific method to legal rules and public policy. For example, although the federal courts and other lawmakers have devoted much recent attention to the misuse of "junk science" in the courtroom, they are far less likely to call into question the extent to which unproven and in some instances even dubious "scientific" methods and theories are employed under the banner of legal rulemaking. Antitrust and political economy are but two examples. antiBlog posits a kind of "logical negativism," by which is meant a skepticism of self-revealed "truths" and due regard for what is unknown. This idea shares common ground with Karl Popper's scientific method, without rejecting the value of inductive observation. Popper's broader point, the idea that in an "Open Society," critical discussion and reflection are essential, is implicit.