Texas Tech University

Reflections On the Decline of the Rule of Law in America

Michael I. Krauss

Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.

What is the Rule of Law? What characterizes a polity governed by law, not by man? Is America a nation where the Rule of Law is on the decline, as some believe? Professor Michael I. Krauss addresses these questions in his lecture.

In 1994, the first year the prize was created, Professor of Law Michael I. Krauss became the law school's only recipient of George Mason University's "Teacher of the Year" award for his engaging and challenging approach in the classroom. Born in the United States but raised in Canada, Professor Krauss speaks legalese in two languages. He earned his B.A. cum laude from Carleton University, his LL.B. summa cum laude from the Université de Sherbrooke, and his LL.M. from Yale Law School, where he was a Commonwealth Scholar. He was Columbia University's Law and Economics Fellow in 1981. He has been teaching at George Mason since 1987 and also has taught at the law schools of Seattle University, the University of Toronto, and the Université de Sherbrooke.

Hired as a law clerk by Justice Louis-Philippe Pigeon of Canada's Supreme Court, Professor Krauss practiced law for Quebec City's largest law firm before entering academia. He also served for five years as a member of Québec's Human Rights Commission. A Salvatori Fellow of the Heritage Foundation and an academic fellow of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, Professor Krauss sits on the advisory boards of several think tanks. He has served as president of the Virginia Association of Scholars and on the Board of Governors of the Virginia State Bar.

Professor Krauss teaches Torts, Products Liability, Legal Ethics and Jurisprudence. His nationally known research has resulted in four books and dozens of scholarly articles. Most recently, he is the author of Products Liability: a Concise Hornbook (West, 2014). He is also the co-author of Legal Ethics in a Nutshell, (West, 2nd ed., 2006). He is also a columnist at Forbes.com. Krauss co-authored the Professionalism course now given by the Virginia State Bar to 1L's in every law school in the Commonwealth. He was nominated for inclusion in What the Best Law Teachers Do (Harvard University Press 2013). He and his wife Cynthia (Vice-President of the American Health Lawyers' Association) have two children, Rebecca (a former clerk for Justice Antonin Scalia and currently an associate at Kirkland and Ellis in Washington, DC) and Joshua (Capt., United States Marine Corps). They live in North Potomac, Maryland, where they raise and breed champion Labrador Retrievers. In his spare time, Professor Krauss motorcycles on "blue highways" across the country. He notched his 50th state in 2012.

Professor Krauss' lecture was held in the Mesa Room at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX, October 01, 2014.

The Institute for the Study of Western Civilization