48:1 Retaking Rationality Two Years Later



This Address discusses the themes from the 2008 book Retaking Rationality: How Cost-Benefit Analysis Can Better Protect the Environment and Our Health, by Richard L. Revesz and Michael A. Livermore. The authors argue that in the time since its publication, the central arguments in the book, that cost-benefit analysis is “here to stay” and that advocacy organization should learn to use it, is, if anything, even more relevant. Cost–benefit analysis has been heartily embraced by the Obama administration, through both the appointment of figures sympathetic to its use, and through its expanded use in a range of environmental and public health contexts. Advocacy groups have also begun to participate in a more robust fashion in debates over how cost-benefit analysis should be conducted. The Address concludes with a brief reply to comments offered by Professors Douglas Kysar and Alexander Volokh in this volume.