University of Southern California

Volume 79, Number 4 (May, 2006)

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    Legislative Arrogance and Constitutional Accountability
    Article by Caitlin E. Borgmann

    A movement is quietly gaining traction – state legislatures are enacting social policy through laws specially designed to evade constitutional review by the courts. These laws give individuals a private right of action to seek massive damages against those who engage in constitutionally protected but controversial conduct. The coercive nature of potential, massive civil liability has the same effect as an outright ban on constitutionally protected acts. But federal appellate courts have found le...

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    The New Vote Buying: Empty Voting and Hidden (Morphable) Ownership
    Article by Henry T.C. Hu & Bernard Black

    Corporate law generally makes voting power proportional to economic ownership. This serves several goals. Economic ownership gives shareholders an incentive to exercise voting power well. The coupling of votes and shares makes possible the market for corporate control. The power of economic owners to elect directors is also a core basis for the legitimacy of managerial authority. Both theory and evidence generally support the importance of linking votes to economic interest. Yet the derivatives...

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    Closing a Resentencing Loophole: A Proposal to Amend 28 U.S.C. 2255
    Note by Julie Austin

    Historically, habeas corpus relief has provided a remedy in extraordinary cases for prisoners incarcerated in violation of the U.S. Constitution. Habeas relief brings to mind gross injustices – prisoners serving sentences for crimes they did not commit or prisoners who are incarcerated because they were not represented by counsel at their trials. Yet under current law, prisoners serving enhanced federal sentences may reduce their sentences without necessarily proving that any constitutional viol...

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    The Right of Publicity vs. the First Amendment: Will One Test Ever Capture the Starring Role?
    Note by Gloria Franke

    America’s fascination with fame and celebrities is self-evident. In our culture, fame is used effectively to persuade, inspire, and inform the public in almost every aspect of our lives. Thus, for celebrities, fame has an inherent economic value, which they endeavor to enhance and protect through the relatively recent legal doctrine of the right of publicity. Broadly defined, the right of publicity is the “inherent right of every human being to control the commercial use of his or her identity.”...

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