Mark S. Weiner

Archive for the ‘Corporations’ Category

From Salzburg to Louisville and Back Again

In Constitutional law, Corporations, Europe, Rule of the Clan on May 9, 2015 at 11:08 am

Greetings from Austria, where I’m spending the semester as a Fulbright scholar at the law school of the University of Salzburg. My wife and I have had a grand time getting to know this beautiful city and the mountains and valleys of the nearby Salzkammergut. If you’d like to find us, we’re living in a little baroque garret right about here:

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Just behind that blue dot, up a sheer cliff, is the house where the author Stefan Zweig used to live, so we’ve been thinking a lot about The World Before Yesterday—and, in an American spirit, about the director Wes Anderson, too. Across the river is the Salzburg old town, with its winding cobblestone streets, and our favorite bakery, and our favorite butcher, with its staff who wave to us warmly on the street when they see us walk by. Read the rest of this entry »

Charlotte the Spider, Supreme Court Justice

In Aesthetics, narrative, form, Animals, Corporations, Environment, Law and literature, Rule of law, Supreme Court, United Nations on June 15, 2013 at 1:58 pm

Very soon, my wife and I will be spending a few days in Maine. We’re going there for a wedding, and rather than spend money on a hotel, we’re going to camp. We’re looking forward to putting on our formal wear beneath the pine trees. And I’m looking forward to visiting the state again after a long absence. The last time I was in Maine, I was in college:

Isn’t that some lobster? I believe we cooked that lobster right where we stood, on the beach, in a tin bucket.

Our impending trip makes me feel especially close to E. B. White, whose views about world government I’ve been considering in a recent thread. They also put me in mind of Justice William O. Douglas of the U.S. Supreme Court. I don’t think that the two ever met—at least, there are no letters between them in the E. B. White Collection at Cornell or the Justice Douglas papers at the Library of Congress. But they share a great deal in common.

Most obviously, they share a love of Maine. White spent much of his life there, at his farm in North Brooklin, and some of his greatest essays, such as “Once More to the Lake,” evoke the beauties of its distinctive, unspoiled landscape. I especially like the collection The Points of My Compass, which also contains some of White’s writings on international law. As for Justice Douglas, as I noted in an October post, he was a nature writer of real skill—and one of his greatest sources of inspiration was Mount Katahdin. That’s the highest peak in Maine and, for hikers traveling north, the end of the 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail (which Justice Douglas also completed).

“Katahdin has been like a haunting melody since the day in the late twenties when I first saw it against a buttermilk sky,” he wrote in My Wilderness. “For some years I explored the dark woods and marshy lakes at its feet, and climbed its rough points. Then came a long period of absence. But the pull of Katahdin, like that of an old love, was always strong. The memories of it were especially bright every May, when the ice went out and the squaretails started jumping—every June, when the salmon-fly hatch was on. Fiddlehead ferns—partridgeberries—alpine azalea with tiny cerise flowers … all of these—and more—were Katahdin.”

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Corporations as Clans

In Corporations, Rule of the Clan on April 25, 2013 at 1:16 pm

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One of the things that’s struck me during my public radio interviews these past few weeks is how much callers express regional differences in the questions they ask. Today I was a guest on the Kathleen Dunn Show on Wisconsin Public Radio. We had a thoughtful, stimulating conversation for about an hour, and a number of listeners called in to participate in the exchange. True to democratic Wisconsin form, many of them were especially interested in talking about the danger that concentrated corporate power poses to individual freedom. In The Rule of the Clan, I describe corporations as part of an archipelago of post-modern clans that—if the liberal state grows too anemic—will create a new society of Status as constraining to individual autonomy as traditional tribal systems.

You can download an MP3 file of the show here, or you can stream it by clicking here (then just click on the MP3 or Windows Media Player icons to the right, just below “Kathleen Dunn”).

As anyone who’s ever talked with me about the subject knows, I’m a huge fan of Wisconsin, so I was especially glad to be a guest on public radio there. Above and below are a couple of pictures my wife and I took during a recent visit to the state. The two images below are from the lovely town of Monroe, a capital of Swiss-American cheese making. While we were there, we visited the great Baumgartner’s tavern, where you can get the very best Limburger and onion sandwich you’ll ever have—it’s absolutely delicious (really!).

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