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Marcin Tustin

I am heartily amused and impressed by your decision to make the dinner contract. I think this is also an appropiate opportunity to say that I was impressed to find a paper of yours being cited in my (English) criminal law textbook.

I salute you sir!


"I want to hire the very best applicants, regardless of the likely duration of their legal careers, and, therefore, regardless of whether they are male or female."

Why shouldn't law schools feel the same way, in order to provide the best academic experience for both students and faculty? In fact, if "elite" schools reject highly-qualified students out of speculation that they might leave the profession early, they might cease to be the "elite" schools, because the best students will go elsewhere.

Parenthetically, I wonder whether the skyrocketing cost of tuition will drive the best and brightest of the middle class to state schools, perhaps making those schools, in many ways, as strong as the ivy league. But that's another discussion.

BTW, I commend Judge Posner for his deal with his former law clerk, and it shows that he can disagree on policy or politics without being disagreeable personally. Unfortunately, there is too little of that type of civility in the world today.

Cogliostro Demon

Some punishment, a nice dinner with an intellegent woman.

David Terver

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Why should law schools feel differently than Judge Posner? One reason is obvious, a reason the judge touched on. They are not similarly situated. Presumably, Judge Posner's clerks serve him for a term of one or two years (though he may, of course, hire career clerks). States, on the other hand, subsidize schools to produce lawyers who will (hopefully) offer their services in the state where they studied for decades. Thus, their time horizon differs.

Marian Shah

Judge Posner,

Thanks for doing a retrospective. I think you made some valid points, and I like the way you analyze things according to an economic perspective and not just an emotional or knee-jerk one.

I think my issue with the admissions policy issue is that very few of us know, when applying to college, what turn our lives will take. If an 18-year-old is already married, pregnant, and plans to stay home permanently, then I would question the utility of her attending Yale at that stage of her life--why pay for it or even go through the stress, if you don't want that life? To that degree, you make a good point.

But in this day and age, most of us, even those with conservative values, are likely not to even meet our future mates until several years into college if not after. Then, most people work several years after that before they have kids.

If you asked me at 18 where I'd be today, I would have said "single." In fact, until I met my husband, I assumed I'd never marry, because I had bad luck in the men department. So why wouldn't I go to college, even grad school, if marriage and children weren't in my immediate future?

I made it to grad school before I even met my husband, and we still don't have children, so I am working. If I'd decided at 18 that I wasn't going to college or the workworld at all because I "might" get married someday and be home, I'd have been a couch potato at my parents' for a long time.

I think expecting college applicants to know what their marriage and motherhood plans will be, and screen them out based on it, probably won't fly simply because your average 18-year-old Ivy League-bound teen isn't going to be planning that far ahead. Most young people who talk abstractly of "future" plans are, at best, dreaming, unless the plans are already made.

To that degree, I sort of take the NYT article with a grain of salt, until I see these women at 22, married, and at home.

Again, cool blog.
(I hope my post has paragraph breaks--the preview didnt!)

John Henry

What about those of us who enjoy education for education's sake and are willing to pay for it?

I am male, late 50's and earned an MBA in the 70's. I also earned an MS in Education in 2004.

My daughter recently finished her MBA and she and I are toying with the idea of going for doctorates together.

In her case it would be because it would be useful to her in her career. In mine, it would be simply for the pleasure of studying.

If forced, I could claim an occupational interest since I am also an adjunct professor at a local engineering school. However, I would only earn an additional $150 per semester for having a doctorate.

Should I be denied admission because I will not put it to good use? I agree that perhaps I should not expect the gov't, school or other entity to pay for it but that is OK, I can afford it.

Actually, in my case perhaps it would come down to age discrimination. Anyone know a good attorney in case it comes to that?

I greatly enjoyed the discussion and love the blog.

John Henry


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