Richard Posner

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Judge Richard Allen Posner (born January 11, 1939, New York City) is currently a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. He is a major voice in the "law and economics" movement, which he helped start while a professor at the University of Chicago Law School.

Posner attended Yale College (A.B., 1959, summa cum laude) and Harvard Law School (LL.B, 1962, magna cum laude) where he was President of the Harvard Law Review, thereafter clerking for Justice William J. Brennan of the United States Supreme Court during the 1962-1963 term. He joined the faculty of the University of Chicago Law School in 1969, where he remains a senior lecturer. President Ronald Reagan appointed Posner to the Seventh Circuit in 1981. He served as chief judge of the court from 1993 to 2000.

He famously opposed the right of privacy in 1981 by arguing that the kinds of interests protected under privacy are not distinctive. He contended that privacy is protected in ways that are economically inefficient.

Although generally considered a man of the right, Posner's pragmatism, his qualified moral relativism, and his affection for Friedrich Nietzsche set him apart from most American conservatives. Among his other influences are the American jurists Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. and Learned Hand. Posner has written several books on jurisprudence and legal philosophy, including The Problems of Jurisprudence; Sex and Reason; Overcoming Law; Law, Pragmatism and Democracy; and The Problematics of Moral and Legal Theory.

Posner has a reputation for prolific publication of articles and books on a diverse number of topics including the 2000 presidential election recount controversy, the Monica Lewinsky scandal and resulting impeachment of President Bill Clinton, and the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Posner has realized his greatest influence through his writings on law and economics - The New York Times called him "one of the most important antitrust scholars of the past half-century." In December 2004, Judge Posner started a joint blog with Nobel Prize winning economist Gary Becker.

Posner has been mentioned as a potential Bush administration nominee to the Supreme Court of the United States.

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