R.I.P. Larry Ribstein

Larry Ribstein, who died earlier this week, was a galvanic force as a scholar and blogger.  I join those who’ve expressed sadness and loss at his untimely passing.  I figured I’d add two comments.

As others have commented, Larry always told you when he thought you were being an idiot.  When I presented one of my early empirical papers at an otherwise warm-and-friendly Canadian Law and Economics conference, Larry provided comments from the audience that had me wanting to go back to running fire drills at Cravath.  My god, how he schooled me!  But he was basically right, and it was business, not personal.  Some years later, he provided crucial encouragement on a new (better?) empirical paper.  Praise felt twice as good coming from him.  What a teacher he must have been!

Second, I’ve recently read his book (coauthored with Erin O’Hara) The Law Market.  I think it’s simply amazing – provocative, and in some ways as mind-opening as Stuntz’s Collapse of American Criminal Justice.  Law and economics has lost a great and unique voice.

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