Antitrust and the Judicial Virtues

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013 at 11:09 am by Daniel A. Crane

Daniel A. Crane, Antitrust and the Judicial Virtues, 2013 Colum. Bus.L. Rev. 1.

Although commentators frequently debate how judges should decide antitrust cases substantively, little attention has been paid to theories of judicial virtue in antitrust decision making.  This essay considers four pairings of virtues:  (1) striving for substantive purity versus conceding to institutional realism; (2) incrementalism versus generalism; (3) presenting a unified face versus candidly conceding differences among judges on an appellate panel; and (4) adhering strictly to stare decisis versus freely updating precedents to reflect evolving economic learning or conditions.  While recognizing the complexities that sometimes pull judges in the opposite direction, this Article gives the nod to institutional realism, incrementalism, candor, and relatively unconstrained updating of precedent.

Author Information

Professor of Law, University of Michigan