Fooled By the Monkeys
Some people think that empirical legal scholars produce a disproportionate amount of mediocre work. The claim is (on its own terms) somewhat difficult to falsify. I tend to think that empirical work gets a bad rap because it can be difficult to evaluate (the black-box problem) and because errors (when they occur) are embarrassingly public. This story on data-collection by the populizer of moral organs provides some evidence for the latter hypothesis. As it turns out, monkey coding seems like even a harder task than coding dockets.
Not incidentally, the news story provides another opportunity to plug the cultural cognition project’s screed against punishment naturalism.