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In Seattle and other cities, recent expansions of trespass law make the regulation of public space easier and more extensive. A range of new tools allow police officials…
In Seattle and other cities, recent expansions of trespass law make the regulation of public space easier and more extensive. A range of new tools allow police officials to clear spaces of those deemed undesirable; they define zones of exclusion and increase the police's power to make arrests. The use of these tools extends contemporary practices of using criminal law to address instances of urban “disorder.” We draw on data from Seattle to catalog some of these new tools, the capabilities they create, and the implications they generate. One important such implication is that they work to push undesirables so far to the margins – spatially, socially, politically, legally – as to render them far outside the body politic. The use of these techniques thus raises important questions about the advisability of addressing social problems by increasing the power of the criminal law.
Back in 2005 lawyers for the Milwaukee school board decided to exclude Viagra and similar erectile dysfunction (ED) drugs from health coverage for the teachers’ union because, well, they were simply too expensive.1 And besides, so the school board explained, such drugs are used primarily for recreational sex and are not a medical necessity.
Economic ideas are the product of contemplation, but also of our economic lives. In the history of ideas, Gérard Debreu’s shining book of 1959, Theory of Value, represents…
Economic ideas are the product of contemplation, but also of our economic lives. In the history of ideas, Gérard Debreu’s shining book of 1959, Theory of Value, represents the pinnacle of purity in contemplating economic life. Rather than contextualizing this oeuvre through his intellectual life, as is usually done, this essay describes his axiomatic analysis by contextualizing it through his economic life. What do we learn about Debreu’s axioms on consumption when thinking of his own consumption? What do we learn about his theory of value when thinking of his own values? Historiographically, this approach permits the use of a widely neglected source in the history of economics: anecdotes. Epistemologically, blending axioms and anecdotes offers a description of how axioms regulate an economic discourse. Finally, this essay offers a language for the material dimensions of economic life that are so underexposed in Debreu’s own work.