Posted tagged ‘Law’

On Intellectual Property Part 2: How Can It Be Fixed?

2010/04/10

In the decade before the American Civil War, the South worked furiously to strengthen the position of slavery in the law. They forced several compromises that required a new slave state be added to the country with every new free state. They passed, and several times strengthened, the Fugitive Slave Act, that made it illegal for anyone to assist slaves in escaping. They considered slaves to be ‘their property,’ and they inserted this into the law of the land. They clung to this, even though mechanization and other advances were making their labor-intensive style of agricultural uneconomical anyways. Their position was plainly wrong, and slavery was abolished after our civil war.

In the last decade, the music and similar industries have worked furiously to strengthen the position of intellectual property in the law. They have forced many changes to the copyright law (especially the Copyright Acts of 1976, and 1998) to prevent anyone from stealing ‘their property’. While the Music Industry isn’t treating the music artists and consumers, quite nearly as badly as slaves, bold action is needed to restore justice in the land.

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On Politics – What Should Be Done?

2010/01/31

Lately, there has been an explosion of outrage from both left and center who mostly voted for Obama, and from the Tea Party on the right over the issues that confront our country and over our inability to resolve them effectively.

I see many good ideas across the political spectrum – from far left to far right, and at many points in between. I would like to see this energy be harnessed to drive forward the improvements that are needed in this country.  (more…)

On Intellectual Property – Part 1: What Needs to be Fixed?

2010/01/21

Lately a lot of attention has been placed on the issues of infringement, of music and software pirates, or competing companies infringing on patents, and the actual people who do the creating don’t get paid much. The artists want to make a fair living (or better) off of their labor, and have the satisfaction of knowing their work is valued by their fans. Consumers contend that they want control over how they consume the work, want to not overpay (or pay at all if they are pirates), and furthermore some may have further concerns around online payment and Digital Rights Management (DRM) technologies. Both sides raise some fair and good points.  Both sides also have some major weaknesses in their positions. (more…)

On Marriage: Can it be Saved?

2009/11/28

I recently heard my aunt’s parrot make a door-slamming noise and shout ‘FUCK YOU!’.  Apparently the bird had been sold to my aunt by a couple who divorced immediately after.  My aunt, who divorced too, years before she got the bird, speculates that the woman kicked the man out of the bedroom because he was a male chauvinist pig who wouldn’t help with the housework.

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On The Independent Blogger Part 2: What is He Doing?

2009/11/26

I am building up to three things here in my drive for reform, Fixing the CountryFixing the Economy, and Fixing Religion.

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On Humanity: Is It Still Within Us?

2009/11/06

I set down and read the news every few days – and almost every time, I see some new atrocity:

Rwandan_Genocide_Murambi_bodiesI believe there is something wrong with people. I feel that many other peoples’ values are not the same as mine. For the record, I am not religious; I am guided entirely by a strong sense of ethics. I wonder if most other people in this world are guided by anything at all, after I read things like the above every few days. (more…)

On The Contract Law: Why is Your Bank so Evil and What Can You Do About It?

2009/11/03

800px-United_States_one_dollar_bill,_reverse Most of us will agree that businesses exist to make a profit. Most of us will also agree that businesses exist because they provide something that a consumer wants to pay for. This model works great for a consumer going to a store to buy an item he can pay cash for 1 time – such as a drill. There are many stores that sell drills, many brands of drills, and many consumers. No particular group can take advantage of any other, and market forces work very well to provide value to the consumer and profit to the businesses.

What happens when a service is purchased for some period of time, such as a bank account, or a cellular phone subscription? Here, the market is more limited in 2 ways.

  1. the number of sellers are very limited in number and in difference in product offering.
  2. the businesses have vast and mighty contracts that give them a level of advantage over the little people not seen since the days of Landlords and Serfs in Europe. (more…)

On Guns – Part 2: A Compromise Most of Us Could Live With?

2009/11/01

I recommend that you first see Part I of this series in my previous post

RevolverI personally believe in non-violence, and don’t own any guns at all. I can also see why others feel it is important to have them. I can understand that concerns for security, safety and freedom motivate  both gun rights and gun control proponents. What I can’t understand is that we continue to avoid finding a reasonable solution that is acceptable to most people. (more…)

On Guns – Part 1: What’s All the Fuss About?

2009/10/29

RevolverThe Second Amendment to the Constitution, written in1791 reads: ‘A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed’.  I am aware of no other sentence that is so controversial, and so open to interpretation as this one. I will briefly present all the interesting interpretations that I am aware of. (more…)

On Computers: What do People Really Need?

2009/10/29

The people I know mostly want something that works – something that allows them to do the things they need and want. For most people this involves simple office applications, internet and other online apps such as instant messaging, email, facebook apps, etc. They want it to run securely, and stably, without having to spend a lot of money to upgrade hardware and software every few years going forward.

800px-Computer-kitten What they have instead is a confusing market dominated by Microsoft and software from members of the Business Software Alliance that seek to make large profits by requiring endless upgrades of software to stay current – which also requires hardware upgrades. All of this costs money. Does it actually deliver any value? (more…)