Just in time (let’s hope) for the demise of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy, RBC’er Steve Teles (now teaching public policy at the University of Maryland) has published his long-awaited book, based on lots of interviewing and archival research, about how one aspect of that conspiracy was plotted and executed. In a gesture of comity between Red Blogistan and Blue Blogistan, Volokh Conspirator Orin Kerr gives Steve’s book a nice write-up,
The book’s starting premise is that 30 years ago, when all of the major legal institutions were left/liberal, conservative and libertarian activists set about trying to create conservative/libertarian institutions to counter them. The book focuses heavily on what Teles sees as the leading institutions that have resulted, such as The Federalist Society, the Institute for Justice, the Center for Individual Rights, law school centers of law & economics (many funded by Olin), and George Mason University Law School. Teles’ interest is in how these organizations got off the ground, what makes them successful, and what role they play. Much of the book is drawn from interviews with the founders and directors of these various institutions; Teles also draws a great deal from access he was given to their historical files.
I haven’t yet read the published version, but I read big chunks in manuscript. It’s a compelling read. “Know your enemy,” and all that.