In a move that surprised even constitutional scholars, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on January 21 that the government may not ban political spending by corporations in federal elections. The decision overturns decades of settled law and reverses two precedents, raising the question of judicial activism in the Roberts Court. Constitutional law and political science faculty at Emory University discuss the merits and likely effects of the ruling, including a greater spotlight on disclosures and anti-corruption measures. Though the long-term results of the Court’s decision are uncertain, one thing’s sure: the debate, in academia, corporate America and Congress, will continue. Building a Foundation for Relations
The devastating earthquake in Haiti last month has prompted an outpouring of support from the U.S. and other countries. But this goodwill and desire to help are not necessarily representative of the historical relationship between the U.S. and Haiti, according to several scholars of Haitian history, culture, and migration who gathered recently at Emory University for a film screening and teach-in. They argue that support of democracy, inclusion of Haitians as coordinators of aid—not just as recipients, the building of a stronger education system, and an appreciation of Haiti’s cultural complexity and its agronomist roots are all vital ingredients in the long-lasting transformation of a ravaged country. Reading the Economy: Books on the Current Financial Crisis
Learning is always at a premium, but never more so than during times of economic downturn. Economists, pundits, historians, and professors are among those offering their analyses and advice in an array of books addressing the global financial crisis. According to Susan Klopper, executive director of the Goizueta Business Library at Emory University, students are beating a path to the library’s doors in a search for books that will help them to understand the current situation and—hopefully—keep them from repeating some of the mistakes that led to it. A Historical Look at the Power and Impact of Stimulus
It's too early to tell whether U.S. President Barack Obama’s $787 billion stimulus package will be an antidote for an economy that’s on life support or prolong inefficient industry practices, reward bad choices, and saddle America with crippling debt. Economic stimulus to jump-start an ailing economy, however, is far from new and has been used in the past with mixed results. Faculty at Emory University and its Goizueta Business School explore the historical implications of economic stimulus and offer their thoughts on the challenges ahead French Ambassador Pierre Vimont Calls for Revitalizing U.S.-European Relations
With a new party at the helm in Washington and new directions in foreign policy under President Barack Obama, the French ambassador to the U.S., Pierre Vimont, says that the transatlantic relationship between the U.S. and Europe faces “a moment in history of great importance” and an “opportunity we haven’t had in the past.” In a recent presentation at Emory University as part of the Halle Speaker Series, Ambassador Vimont discussed the common challenges facing the U.S. and the European Union—including the financial collapse, climate change, and the Middle East—arguing that “we need to find a collective solution” to these crises, because “no single country can find a way out alone.” CARE CEO Helene Gayle on Empowering Women and Strengthening Foreign Assistance
According to Helene Gayle, president & CEO of CARE, USA, a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty, there is still a need for a more comprehensive and systematic approach to foreign assistance. More often than not, assistance money is earmarked for specific projects or concerns, such as HIV. If a community is in dire need of a good water system, it can’t spend any or part of assistance money designated for other things to build one, Gayle explained to students during a recent visit to Emory University's Goizueta Business School. Says Gayle, “There’s a lot more potential to extend what we do in ways that are more useful.” What Lies Ahead for U.S. Automakers?
With a federal bailout proposal for the Big Three U.S. automakers in tatters as Knowledge@Emory goes to press, many observers wonder if executives at American carmakers—still depending on gas-guzzling SUVs 35 years after the auto industry was first shaken by seesawing fuel prices—have really learned anything. To find out, Knowledge@Emory spoke with Jagdish Sheth, a chaired professor of marketing at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. Sheth said that a simple handout will not solve the problems faced by General Motors, Ford and Chrysler. Instead, he says, the car companies need to rework the way they do business. Sheth’s published works include The Self-Destructive Habits of Good Companies...And How to Break Them. The U.S. Economy: What Happened & What’s Next?
Making sense of the myriad events that catapulted the United States into a recession is no easy task. Six economists from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School tackled the topic during an October 30 panel discussion sponsored by Knowledge@Emory. According to the professors, years of short-sighted decisions dug the hole the U.S. economy finds itself in, and it will take long-term leadership to climb out of that hole. Understanding the Potential Impact of the U.S. Financial Bailout
With the revamped Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 now finally passed by the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate, and signed by President George W. Bush, the much-debated financial bailout plan is now a reality. But as the Dow plummets, the global financial markets take a hit, and U.S. credit markets freeze, can the plan provide relief fast enough to rescue the nation’s beleaguered financial institutions and, in turn, the faltering economy? Professors at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School spoke with Knowledge@Emory about the implications of the bailout. Assessing Conservatorship for Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae
On September 7, U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson, Jr. revealed the Treasury and Federal Reserve approved a plan placing Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae in conservatorship that day. Now, a newly created independent regulatory body, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), is charged with the onerous task of getting Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac out of their financial woes. Goizueta professors discuss the dramatic move and look ahead to what the future might hold for these government-sponsored enterprises—holders of at least one-half of the nation’s home mortgages.