Larry Ribstein, RIP

By Geoffrey Manne

This morning our dear colleague, Larry Ribstein, passed away. The intellectual life of everyone who knew him and of the legal academy at large is deeply diminished for his passing.

For me, as for many others, Larry was an important influence, not only intellectually but personally, as well. Larry was the godfather of Truth on the Market, which got its start when a few of us, including Bill Sjostrom, Josh, Thom and me, pinch hit for Larry at Ideoblog in November 2005. It took eight of us, including my dad, to fill his shoes, and still his traffic went down. More than anyone else, Larry was instrumental in my decision to leave law teaching to work at Microsoft. Completely unsure what to do and worried about how it would affect my ability to return to law teaching, I called Larry, who had no doubt. He sealed the deal by pointing out that a move like that one would open some completely unanticipated, and potentially great, career paths and telling me not to worry so much about getting back to law teaching. He was right, of course, and, thus also an important influence on the creation of the International Center for Law and Economics. And Larry was a friend, one of those I always looked forward to seeing at ALEA and other conferences, more than once providing the necessary marginal incentive to attend.

We grieve for Ann, Sarah and Susannah and mourn his passing.

The outpouring in the blogosphere from Larry’s friends, admirers, colleagues, and the like is, not surprisingly, moving. As they are found, remembrances will be posted here at Truth on the Market.