232 posts categorized "Blog Stuff"

Thank You Paige Skiba

posted by Bob Lawless

TitleLoanOn behalf of eveyone at Credit Slips, I wanted to thank Professor Paige Skiba for spending a week with us. Paige was able to share data from her new paper with Jim Hawkins on title loans.

As the blog administrator, what I appreciated perhaps most of all was Paige's use of our Shutterstock account to liven up the main blog page with some images and color. (I am looking at you fellow Credit Slips bloggers.) In tribute to Paige's time with us, here is the photo that comes up when you search for "title loan" at Shutterstock. I shudder to imagine what automobile goes with that key!

Thanks again, Paige.

Key and title image from Shutterstock.

Thank You Mark Weidemaier

posted by Bob Lawless
Professor Mark Weidemaier of the University of North Carolina has been guest blogging with us since early November. Today's post on the Second Circuit's pari passu hearing in the NML litigation marked an end to his time with us. Mark hung around so he couuld keep our readers updated on  this important litigation on sovereign debt. Mark's and Anna Gelpern's posts on the topic have been among the most followed on Credit Slips. I just wanted to thank Mark for taking the time to share his expertise with our readers. 

Welcome Back to Paige Skiba

posted by Bob Lawless
It is always great to have our guests return, which makes me please to announced that Professor Paige Skiba of Vanderbilt University will be joining us for a few days. Paige has done a lot of interesting work on high-interest credit like payday lending and pawnshops. She promised to blog a little bit about her new paper with Jim Hawkins of the University of Houston on title loans. Welcome back, Paige.

Technical Problems Yesterday

posted by Bob Lawless
If you visited Credit Slips yesterday (February 19) and had problems loading the site, it was because our hosting service (Typepad) had some system-wide issues. Everything should be working now. Typepad status is always available here.

Occasional Jason Kilborn

posted by Bob Lawless
Long-time readers will remember Professor Jason Kilborn's guest-blogging stints. Jason focuses on comparative and international issues in the world of bankruptcy. This is always a perspective we sorely need here on the Slips, and we were wanting to get his voice back on the blog. When we spoke with him, we were very pleased to learn that he was willing to join us an "Occasional," which means we will have the benefit of his insights on a continuing basis. Welcome, Jason, to Credit Slips.

Welcome to Lauren Willis

posted by Bob Lawless
We're very excited to have Lauren Willis of Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, join us as a guest blogger. We have been trying to find a mutually convenient time for months, and schedules finally aligned. Professor Willis is perhaps best known for being a skeptic of the Pollyannish view that consumer education always helps, a topic on which she has published a series of articles. At least four different Credit Slips bloggers have discussed her work (here, here, here, and here). I understand that Professor Willis intends to discuss moving beyond disclosure-based forms of regulation, building off her previous work.

Blogging Like It's 2009 -- Now with Facebook!

posted by Bob Lawless

It seemed time to catch up with the rest of the world. My kids tell me there is this thing called "Facebook" that might just catch on. We now have a Facebook page. Perhaps even better, you can "Like" or "Share" individual posts, or you can "Like" the whole blog from the button on the right. For Facebook neophytes like me, the difference between a "Like" and a "Share" is who sees your activity in Facebook. A "Like" will show an excerpt of our post to all of your Facebook friends, and we certainly hope that our readers will want to do a lot of that. If you "Share," you can share the post with only some of your Facebook friends or even e-mail it to whoever you want.

Continue reading "Blogging Like It's 2009 -- Now with Facebook!" »

Putting the E(lliot) in Sovereign Debt Enforcement...

posted by Mark Weidemaier

Until a month or so ago, you could have asked almost any economist or political scientist whether sovereign borrowers worry about legal enforcement, and, by way of answer, you would gotten a technical version of "Huh?" Academics disagree about why sovereigns repay loans, but almost no one thinks they do so to avoid being sued. So although bond investors are technically entitled to sue sovereign borrowers, there is no evidence that these formal legal entitlements actually impact the likelihood of repayment. That's why NML v. Argentina has captured so much attention. Hedge funds like Elliott Associates (and NML Capital, a related fund) are finally at the cusp of creating potent remedies for jilted bond investors.

If this effort succeeds, it will mark a revolution in the sovereign debt markets, one that will give sovereign borrowers reason to fear legal enforcement. And at first glance, one would think investors would welcome such a development. In a private loan, lenders typically want strong legal enforcement rights - the better to ensure they get their money back. Surprisingly, however, this hasn't always been true in the sovereign debt context. In this recent paper, I track how sovereign bonds evolved in response to the momentous changes in the US law of sovereign immunity that happened in the 20th century. Between 1952 and 1976, foreign sovereigns gradually became subject to the jurisdiction of US courts and eventually to coercive methods of judgment enforcement (i.e., asset seizure). Investors had these rights, however, only if the bond contract granted them, and almost no bond contract did. To the contrary, throughout most of the 1970s and 1980s, bonds issued under New York law provided only symbolic enforcement rights - basically, allowing investors to sue the borrower but not to enforce the judgment. What's more, investors didn't seem to be willing to pay more for the new enforcement rights they did receive. Basically, a major doctrinal revolution occurred, but investors didn't seem to notice.

As for NML v. Argentina - well, investors seem to have noticed. Later this week, I'm heading to a conference in Geneva, where a group of lawyers, economists, and political scientists will talk about past debt crises and the lessons they offer for the present one. I expect that NML v. Argentina will capture a fair amount of academic interest. After many years of discounting the relevance of legal enforcement, academics may have to start taking it seriously too.

Comment Spam Fail

posted by Bob Lawless

Every morning, I go through the list of comments and unpublish all the comment spam. Typically, the comment spam tries to engage with the blog content in what I can only suppose is an attempt to not look like spam. In this morning's comment queue was this gem that I had to share, purporting to be from "Best Financial Blog":

Definitely Elizabeth Warren is a good senator. Warren is also a good blog poster. He always posts a good and informative post. He also belongs to Financial Protection Bureau, which is a good thing. He always posts a good blog.

A piece of friendly advice to the business firm -- yes, I know who it is -- who paid someone to spam our blog. Whatever you're paying them, it's too much.

Many Thanks to Amy Schmitz

posted by Bob Lawless
On behalf of everyone at Credit Slips, I want to thank Professor Amy Schmitz for joining us as a guest blogger. Her posts included the song Fine Print Foils lamenting the legal traps laid for everyday households in many a consumer contract. Amy has promised to return at some point in the future when her schedule allows, and we hope she does. Thanks, Amy, for your contributions to Credit Slips

The Slips Go to College

posted by Bob Lawless
Credit Slips bloggers Jean Braucher and Melissa Jacoby have been elected to the American College of Bankruptcy. The College is an invitation-only organization for insolvency professionals "who have distinguished themselves in their practice and in their contribution to the insolvency field." On behalf of the Credit Slips community, I want to extend congratulations to Jean and Melissa on this honor. It is great to have their experience and talent contributing to this blog's success.

Best Wishes to Senator-Elect Warren

posted by Bob Lawless
Many congratulations to Elizabeth Warren on her election to the U.S. Senate. Warren was a co-founder of the Credit Slips blog and contributed until she took up her responsibilities with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. To many of the blog's contributors, she is a teacher, a collaborator, a co-author, and a friend. Best wishes to her as she begins this new adventure in her life.

Another Returnee to the Warm Embrace That Is Credit Slips

posted by Bob Lawless

Professor John Pottow is coming back to Credit Slips as one of our "Occasional" bloggers. Pottow was one of the blog's founding members, and it is fantastic that he is able to rejoin us. He always seems to find interesting stories or perspectives that others have missed about the world of debt and bankruptcy. His law school bio page at the University of Michigan says he is a licensed barrister and solicitor in Ontario, which is an amazing coincidence because I once drove through Ontario on my way to Michigan. Small world.

Welcome back, John.

Welcome to Amy Schmitz

posted by Bob Lawless
We are pleased to welcome Professor Amy J. Schmitz of the University of Colorado as a guest blogger. She has done a lot of work in the area of consumer contracting and consumer arbitration. Welcome, Amy, to Credit Slips.

Thank You, Barry Scholnick

posted by Bob Lawless

On behalf of all the regular Credit Slips bloggers, I wanted to thank Professor Barry Scholnick for joining us this week and offering a "north of the border" perspective on consumer bankruptcy issues. It was especially insightful to think about what centralization would mean for data availability and those of us who believe in empirically driven policy making.

Thank you, Barry. Come back again some time.

Guest Pottow

posted by Bob Lawless

Back at the dawn of Credit Slips, we were privileged to have Regular Pottow. For the uninitiated, I am of course referring to Professor John A.E. Pottow of the University of Michigan Law School. Due to the press of other responsibilities, John had to drop out of the blog, but we always had hoped he would be able to spend time with us again. Thus, I am happy to announce the return of Guest Pottow who will be with us for the next week for so offering a few thoughts on developments in the bankruptcy world. It is great to have John back with us, even if it is just for a few days.

Welcoming Barry Scholnick

posted by Bob Lawless

At the Boulder Conference of Consumer Financial Decision Making, Professor Barry Scholnick of the University of Alberta presented some fantastic research about the influence of neighbors on the decision to file bankruptcy. Scholnick's findings with Canadian data parallel similar, albeit older, findings in the United States.

Fortunately, Scholnick has kindly agreed to be a guest blogger for a while here on Credit Slips as a guest blogger. It is always great to have someone who can offer perspectives from outside the United States or from outside the legal academy. As a Canadian economist, Scholnick is giving us "two for one," and we have therefore decided to double our unusual honorarium. Welcome, Barry, to Credit Slips.

Levitin on the Board

posted by Bob Lawless
Congratulations to Credit Slips's Adam Levitin who was just named to the Consumer Advisory Board for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Fleischer Does a Lubben

posted by Bob Lawless
As regular Credit Slips readers know, our own Stephen Lubben has a Dealbook column over at this place called The New York Times. Now comes word that University of Colorado law professor Vic Fleischer has started a column at Dealbook on tax matters. I had the pleasure of having Vic as a colleague for a few years, and I found him to be one of the most thoughtful observers of what is happening on tax issues. If you like Credit Slips, you'll probably like his new column.

Do Your Research, Ezra Klein!

posted by Adam Levitin

Ezra Klein has joined the melee over the Obama Administration's housing policy failure with an apologia for the Administration.  Klein argues: 

The right question on housing, then, is not whether the administration’s policies proved insufficient. They did. It’s what would have been better. And that’s not a question that either Appelbaum or Goldfarb conclusively answer. It’s not even a question that the most credible critics of the Obama administration’s housing policies conclusively answer.

In making this claim, Klein ignores a long list of the Administration's critics who pushed hard and vocally for more pro-active policy alternatives.  (I'm going to ignore the "conclusive" part of Klein's restatement of the issue. If he wants critics to prove "conclusively" that an alternative would have been better, then nothing will suffice.  We're not dealing with a pick-your-own-adventure book where you can go back and try out different decisions.)  

As far as what would have been better:  gosh, there's a list of potential interventions that very credible people were proposing.  Here are a few:

Continue reading "Do Your Research, Ezra Klein!" »

Six Years and Counting

posted by Bob Lawless

0110Today is the sixth anniversary of Credit Slips, which is hard to believe. We have been through a lot of changes since then -- new authors and new formats. What has not changed is the mission. We continue to try to serve as a platform for policy-level discussions of topics in credit, finance, and bankruptcy. On behalf of everyone at Credit Slips, I want to thank all of our readers and especially thank those of you who contribute to the discussion with the many insightful comments we receive.

It has been a lot of fun keeping this blog going, although not always easy trying to keep up with my day job of being a law professor. We'll keep going as long as you all keep coming to the site.

L&L In D.C.

posted by Stephen Lubben

Tomorrow two Slips members -- Adam and I -- journey to the House of Representatives. Ok, for Adam this is a journey to the crosswalk, but nonetheless ...

We are both testifying at hearing in front of the Financial Services Committee, subtly titled Investor Protection: The Need to Protect Investors from the Government. Our testimony can be found at the link

Thank You to Bill Maurer and Stephen Rea

posted by Katie Porter

Last week, Credit Slips was fortunate to have the thoughtful insights of Bill Maurer and Stevie Rea on payments systems. Their posts reflect years of research in the United States and overseas on the social meaning of money, the potential and perils of mobile money, and the future of cash. We thank them for sharing their ideas with us.

As anthropologists working in a field shaped by legal rules--and lack thereof, Bill and Stevie offered insights on the ways in which cultural beliefs, social networks, and other non-legal forces are likely to shape the regulation of payments system in the future. If you missed their posts, I highly recommend you treat yourself to them. In their final post, they offer a challenge to Credit Slips readers that I hope we'll take up:

Continue reading "Thank You to Bill Maurer and Stephen Rea" »

Why Us?

posted by Bob Lawless

What does it mean that the two most common forms of comment spam on this blog are people trying to sell sunglasses or handbags?

Welcome to Guestbloggers Bill Maurer and Stephen Rea

posted by Katie Porter

Credit Slips welcomes Bill Maurer as a guest blogger this week. Bill is NOT a lawyer! Isn't that great? (We all need an occasional break from lawyers, even those of us who are lawyers.)

But Bill is one of my colleagues at the UC Irvine School of Law, where he has a joint appointment. He is a cultural anthropologist whose work focuses on law, property, and money and finance. Of great interest to Slips readers will be Bill's expertise on payment systems, and particularly on mobile money. He is the Director of the Institute for Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion, a Gates Foundation-funded center for academic and policy research.

Bill's recent paper, Regulation as Retrospective Ethnography: Mobile Money and the Arts of Cash, examines how we are integrating mobile money products into our understanding of money, which traditionally has meant cash. He also has published work on BitCoin, Islamic banking, offshore financial structures, and other payments issues.

Bill will be joined by Stephen Rea, a graduate student in anthropology at UC Irvine. Stephen also is affiliated with the Institute for Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion and has co-authored a forthcoming paper with Bill and another scholar on mobile money agents in the developing world.

We look forward to their insights.

Thank You to Philomila Tsoukala

posted by Adam Levitin

Credit Slips has been fortunate to have my Georgetown colleague Philomila Tsoukala as a guest blogger the past couple weeks. The mainstream US media press coverage of the Greek financial crisis has focused on the dynamic between the Greek government and the EU, but as Philo's posts remind us, there is a complex internal dynamic in Greece, with the Greek population actually having to live with the deals its government keeps making.  Thank you Philo!

Welcome to Philomila Tsoukala

posted by Bob Lawless

On behalf of Credit Slips, I wanted to welcome Professor Philo Tsoukala from the Georgetown University Law Center. Professor Tsoukala will be joining as a guest blogger, and she will be commenting especially on the Greek debt situation and how the debt situation is affecting everyday life in Greece. Professor Tsoukala specializes in family law and is the co-author of a forthcoming new edition of a well-respected textbook in the field. At Georgetown, she teaches classes in family law and EU law as well as a seminar on the regulation of the family and the market. We're very happy that she has agreed to lend her expertise to our online community.

And Now Featuring Melissa Jacoby

posted by Bob Lawless

On behalf of all the Credit Slips bloggers, it is my pleasure to announce the permanent return of Professor Melissa Jacoby as one of our "Occasionals." For the past several weeks, she had doing some guest posts, but we are very happy that she has agreed to stick around. Melissa is a professor at the University of North Carolina School of Law and a leading expert on bankruptcy law with a number of prominent studies on medical debt as well as housing issues. As one of the founding members of Credit Slips, Melissa is one of the reasons we're here at all. Welcome back.

SOPA, PIPA, and Us

posted by Bob Lawless

Given what a small part of the web we are, it seemed a little melodramatic for Credit Slips to go dark over the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA). It did seem appropriate at least to add my own voice to the opposition.

If you are not familiar with these heavy-handed attempts to police intellectual property piracy, plenty of information is available from Wikipedia here (and, yes, that link still works today, January 18). Some of the provisions in these acts could have implications for small sites such as this.

Although the government should stop the theft of intellectual property, these proposed laws go way too far, sacrificing too much freedom in the name of property rights. In particular, it disappoints me that some senators who have been champions of consumer protection have put themselves on the wrong side of this issue. Specifically, Senators Patrick Leahy, Sherrod Brown, Dick Durbin, Charles Schumer, Al Franken, and Sheldon Whitehouse are listed on THOMAS as sponsors or co-sponsors of PIPA (S. 968). It would be great to see these senators lead a retreat from these onerous pieces of legislation.

Those are my personal views as blog administrator. And, that is probably a point we don't emphasize enough on this blog -- everyone is speaking for himself or herself only.

Welcome Back Melissa Jacoby

posted by Bob Lawless

A few evenings ago, a wonderful e-mail arrived in my inbox from Melissa Jacoby, the Graham Kenan Professor of Law at the University of North Carolina. Melissa was one of the founding members of Credit Slips, and she was writing to accept our invitation to come back and guest blog. Melissa is a nationally recognized expert on bankruptcy, debtor-creditor, and commercial law. It is great to have her voice back with us even if it is just for a while.

Regulatory Bankruptcy

posted by Anna Gelpern

My Jotwell review of Sarah Woo's last article is here

How to Find Me

posted by Katie Porter

I've had a series of funny phone calls this week, in which the speaker expresses total shock that I answer the phone. While I am notorious for never answering my phone, the real cause of the callers' surprise is that the number where I answer is sometimes the third one they have called looking for me. Why? I just relocated to Irvine, California as I've joined the faculty of the UC Irvine School of Law, after a year-long visit at Harvard Law School and several years on the faculty at the University of Iowa College of Law. For those of you looking for detailed information, the bio link on the Credit Slips homepage will get you what you need.

Continue reading "How to Find Me" »

Happy Fifth Birthday

posted by Bob Lawless

200px-US_5.svg On July 18, 2006, a few academics studying bankruptcy and debt decided to take a whirl on putting up a blog making today the fifth anniversary of Credit Slips' launch. According to Site Meter, we have had over 1.4 million visits during that time resulting in over 2.3 million page views. Those numbers do not even count those of you who read us in places like Google Reader.

We will continue to try to do what we do best, discussing credit and bankruptcy issues from a policy perspective. We cannot pretend we don't make mistakes, but what we try to bring you are independent perspectives. Credit Slips does not accept advertising or solicited guest posts (and you would be amazed how many people write wanting us to host their blog post on some industry topic).

Thank you for your readership and interest. It has sustained us for five years, and we to keep this discussion going for a long time.

Sarah Woo

posted by Stephen Lubben

I am sad to report that my co-author, and recent Credit Slips guest blogger, Sarah Woo of NYU recently passed away after a long illness. She was one of the few who easily bridged the devide between banking and bankruptcy, and will be missed.

Thanks for the Insurance Memories (and Lessons), Professor Schwarcz

posted by Nathalie Martin

This past week we were lucky to be edified by guest blogger Professor Daniel Schwarcz from the University of Minnesota School of Law. I bet Daniel is a great teacher. I mean, the guy can make insurance interesting, if not downright scandalous!

There was tons of foot traffic in the way of comments on Daniel’s blogs, especially the one about whether you can predict if your own insurer will pay large claims, and the one about how lenders should be handing insurance payouts when a home is in default or foreclosure. Daniel finished with his own Top 10 for  insurance reform. By the way, regarding his nutritional labels, this exact idea has been floated as a way to make disclosures more meaningful in all consumer contexts. Now let's just hope the regulators are listening.



Welcome Guest Blogger and Insurance Guru Daniel Schwarcz

posted by Nathalie Martin

This week we are a happy to welcome guest blogger Professor Daniel Schwarcz from the University of Minnesota School of Law. Daniel has done some great research in the area of property and casualty insurance and consumer protection. He is also very interested in consumer perspectives in health insurance and regulatory design in general. We blogged about one if his articles on April 22, 2011, and his work has gained national attention  elsewhere as well. 

We know Daniel writes lots of articles as well as a widely used textbook on insurance law, but we are excited to hear some of his more informal musings about all things debtor-creditor, especially about the disconnect between transparency in the credit world and the lack of transparency in insurance. Thanks Daniel, and enjoy the blogspace!

And Occasionally Jean Braucher

posted by Bob Lawless

On behalf of everyone at Credit Slips, I am extremely pleased to announce that Jean Braucher will be joining us as an "Occasional." Jean will be well known to many Credit Slips readers and has been a past guest contributor. She is, of course, the Roger C. Henderson Professor of Law at the University of Arizona and has published widely in the areas of bankruptcy and commercial law. Jean's list of publications is too long to capture in a short summary other than to say she is one of the leading bankruptcy scholars in the country. She just completed a stint as the Robert Zinman Resident Scholar at the American Bankruptcy Institute and also serves on the board of directors for the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys.

And for those who are wondering: the "Occasionals" are a category of bloggers here that we established a while back. The main difference between the "Occasionals" and the "Regulars" is just the expected frequency of postings.

Greetings from Woodstock Institute

posted by Geoff Smith

Hello, Credit Slips readers.  My name is Geoff Smith.  I am Senior Vice President at Woodstock Institute, and I will be joining you as a guest blogger this week.  As Bob Lawless pointed out, my guest blogging coincides with the release of a Woodstock Institute report examining patterns of personal bankruptcy filings in Cook County, IL (where Chicago is located and Woodstock Institute is based).  I will talk about that report in more detail in a forthcoming post, but first I wanted to give a bit of background on Woodstock and myself.

Continue reading "Greetings from Woodstock Institute" »

FeedBurner & E-mail Subscriptions

posted by Bob Lawless

By popular demand, I have made some changes to the news feed for Credit Slips. The first change is that the Credit Slips feed is now available through FeedBurner. I am told this change should not affect anyone who already has subscribed to the Credit Slips feed because FeedBurner will automatically be sending your Credit Slips posts to your old feed. It worked for me although I did get some duplicate posts immediately after I switched us to FeedBurner, but the duplicates might have been because I was the one fiddling with the settings.

The reason I switched to FeedBurner was to implement the second change, which many people had requested. You now can sign up to receive Credit Slips posts via e-mail. Just enter your e-mail address in the box to the right, and FeedBurner will start sending our posts to your inbox. You can configure how you receive those e-mails through FeedBurner.

If you are wondering "What's a news feed?," you can ignore this post. You will still be able to read Credit Slips the old-fashioned way by clicking on a link or a bookmark in your web browser.

Thanks to Lois Lupica

posted by Katie Porter

Credit Slips and its readers benefitted from the thoughtful posts of Prof. Lois Lupica during the last week. Her study on attorneys fees in consumer bankruptcy will surely contribute to policy discussions about reforming the bankruptcy system, and I'm glad to have had a preview of how Prof. Lupica is going about this important work. We hope she'll join us again as her work progresses to provide additional findings and insights. Thanks from your fans at Credit Slips

Welcome to Lois Lupica

posted by Katie Porter

This week Credit Slips will feature posts from  Professor Lois Lupica. She is the Maine Law Foundation Professor of Law at the University of Maine Law School and counsel at Thompson & Knight LLP. Lupica's published works include writings about both business and consumer credit issues, including an early and important work on asset securitization and a piece on the effects of revised Article 9. My own personal favorite is the empirical study she authored with Jay Zagorsky on how debtors fare after bankruptcy. The study is sobering, suggesting that debtors may lag for a decade or more after filing behind similarly situated people who avoided bankruptcy. 

Professor Lupica is currently working on a large scale study of attorneys' fees in consumer bankruptcy cases. Funded by a grant from the ABI Endowment Fund, the study has already resulted in one piece, The Costs of BAPCPA: Report of the Pilot Study of Consumer Bankruptcy Case. I hope she will share more of her findings with Credit Slips. The increase in attorneys fees remains on the most enduring changes wrought by BAPCPA on the bankruptcy system. 

Welcome, Lois Lupica! 

Congratulations Bob Lawless!

posted by Adam Levitin

Credit Slips' Very Own Robert M. Lawless was inducted into the American College of Bankruptcy last night at a ceremony at the Supreme Court of the United States. I'm hopeful that we can soon post a picture of the tuxedo-clad inductee. Congratulations Bob on a well-deserved honor!

Thank You to Sarah Woo

posted by Bob Lawless

On behalf of the Credit Slips regulars, I wanted to thank Sarah Woo for joining us as a guest blogger. Her posts on Lehman, DIP financing, and the transmission of risk from financial sectors to the real sectors of the economy all had one underlying theme: those of us working in the credit and bankruptcy areas need to pay more attention to financial regulation. Well, yeah, we all should pay more attention to lots of things, but Woo's work makes very important and valuable points about how financial regulation can affect debt and bankruptcy outcomes in very specific and sometimes very surprising ways. She is a new face in the academy working on issue of debt, financial regulation, and bankruptcy, and I am sure we will hear a lot more from her in the years to come. Thank you, Sarah, for joining us, and please come back soon!

Thank You's and Welcomes

posted by Bob Lawless

For the past ten days, Professor Jonathan Lipson has been a guest blogger with a series of posts that left few of our readers indifferent. Love 'em or hate 'em, the posts on everything from empirical methodology to state bankruptcy seemed to strike a chord with our readers. One of the things about blogging, especially when you are a visitor for a week, is that you put your opinions (and punctuation) out there for everyone to take a shot at. On behalf of everyone at Credit Slips, I want to thank Jonathan for joining us for a week and putting himself into the fray.

Joining us as a guest for this coming week will be Professor Sarah Woo of New York University. At the UCLA "Big Bankruptcy" workshop, I had the pleasure of meeting Woo. She is doing some important work on how financial and bank regulation affects specific outcomes in the bankruptcy courts. The intersection of these two bodies of law are important yet underdeveloped theoretically and empirically. Welcome Sarah.

Lipson's Back, Is He Going to Be Trouble? (Hey-La, Lipson's Back)

posted by Bob Lawless

When you see him coming, you had better cut out on the double. Hey-la, hey-la. Lipson's Back
You've been spreading lies that I was untrue. Hey-la . . . OK, I'll stop.

We're happy to announce that Jonathan Lipson, the Foley & Lardner Professor of Law at the University of Wisconsin, will be joining us again as a guest blogger. Our long-time readers will remember that Lipson has blogged here in the past, and we are glad that he agreed to reprise his role. The short-term plan is that he will live blog the "Big Bankruptcy" conference organized by Professor Lynn LoPucki and being held at UCLA later this week. Lipson tells me that he also has a few other posts in the works. Welcome back, Jonathan.

Many Thanks to Troy McKenzie

posted by Adam Levitin

On behalf of Credit Slips, I want to thank Troy McKenzie for joining us a guest blogger. Professor McKenzie's posts raised lots of interesting questions about attorneys' fees in bankruptcy and the Constitutional status of bankruptcy courts. I'm glad to see that his posts spurred some good discussion. Thank you again Troy!

Welcome Troy McKenzie

posted by Adam Levitin

Credit Slips would like to welcome Troy McKenzie as a guest blogger. Troy is an Associate Professor of Law at NYU Law School, where he teaches bankruptcy, civil procedure, and complex litigation classes.  Troy's scholarship has focused on the intersection of bankruptcy and Constitutional law, an often neglected area of legal scholarship.  Generally, Constitutional law experts aren't well versed in bankruptcy law and policy and don't wish to become so, while bankruptcy experts often shy away from the still unsettled Constitutional status of the US bankruptcy court system, and its uncomfortable non-Article III existence.  

Troy's background spans both fields--as a bankruptcy practitioner at Debevoise and Plimpton and as a law clerk for the US Supreme Court.  (Note how few bankruptcy scholars--or practitioners--have clerked for the Supreme Court--I can think of all of 3.  A wag might note how problematic the Supreme Court's bankruptcy jurisprudence is...)  Troy's scholarship in the Constitutional dimensions of bankruptcy goes where others fear to tread, and we're the richer for it.  Welcome Troy!

Losing Part of Our Foundation

posted by Bob Lawless

Back in June 2006, there were seven professors who were working on the Consumer Bankruptcy Project. We were knee-deep in the minutiae of drafting surveys, codebooks, and interviews. We started Credit Slips as a way to have some intellectual interaction among the team. We were not too worried about having readers. The point was for us to have a place to write for each other.

WIthout these founding members, Credit Slips would never have gotten started let alone have found any readers. Three of our founders have recently decided to retire from Occasional status: Debb Thorne at Ohio University, John Pottow at the University of Michigan, and Angie Littwin at the University of Texas. As their schedule permits, we hope that they will join us from time to time as guests.

We'll miss their valuable insights. Thank you, Debb, John and Angie (as well as our other retired founding members Melissa Jacoby and Elizabeth Warren) for helping to build Credit Slips into the blog it has become today. Whatever success we have is because of our contributors, commenters, and readers.

Many Thanks to Annelise Riles

posted by Bob Lawless

On behalf of Credit Slips, I wanted to thank Annelise Riles for joining us a guest blogger. Professor Riles brought fresh and new perspectives to organizational and regulatory problems we often discuss here on Credit Slips. Her posts offered a perspective into the insights that lawyers can learn about institutional design from fields such as anthropology and sociology. Again, Annelise, many thanks for taking the time to join us.

Welcome Annelise Riles

posted by Adam Levitin

Credit Slips would like to welcome Annelise Riles as a guest blogger. Annelise is the Jack G. Clarke Chair in Far East Legal Studies and Professor of Anthropology at Cornell University, where she teaches in both the Law School and the Anthropology Department. Annelise's work examines financial institutions and networks from an anthropological perspective.  

As a would-be historian, I am a particular fan of anthropological (and sociological) studies of consumer finance and the institutions involved there in. There aren't many, but they bring a much needed dose of reality to a field that is too often analyzed through economic theory. Legal scholarship rarely engages in the sort of qualitative field interviews that are the bread and butter of anthropology. (I recognize that there are important exceptions, including work by co-bloggers and past guest bloggers.) This is not just a matter of pesky internal review boards, but simply because this method of acquiring knowledge is not hard-wired into legal academia. (Given that it is somewhat analogous to the deposition, there's a lingering irony.) While we are not all going to becoming anthropologists, there's an enormous amount we can learn from the anthro literature about how regulators and market participants actually think , and I'm thrilled that Annelise will be sharing some of the insights with us on the Slips. Welcome Annelise!


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