The New Kind Of Copyright: A Discussion
In response to a New York Times article by Robert S. Boynton, the following conversation ensued on an online forum:
Copyright, like patent, is merely an extension of Capitalism. Monopoly is the goal of any Capital business, becoming the sole supplier of some need or want so as to receive the greatest possible price while paying the lowest possible cost for any product or service. With Copyright and Patent now taking the place of Adam Smith's "conspiracies against the common good", Capitalism has merely come full circle.
It appears to me that Copyrights and Patents were originally intended to a assure the individuals received the benefits of their creative efforts, during their own lifetimes. I have no problem with that for natural, biological individuals. However, the 1886 US Supreme Court ruling in a railbed dispute titled Santa Clara County vs. Southern Pacific Railroad created a new, potentially imortal sort of individual. The ruling held that a private corporation was a "natural person" entitled to all the rights and privileges of a human being. I see this new law as the first step in establishing eternal Copyrights and Patents for the benefit of Corporations. It is time for a Constitutional Amendment limiting “personhood“ to individual biological entities, and specifically excluding groups and “collectives” [and a corporation is a collective, just as much as a “Gulag” is] from that definition.
Actually, The Constitution tells us that the purpose of what we call patents and copyrights was NOT to secure wealth for the creators but rather, and here I quote, "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;". Notice the purpose was to PROMOTE the free exchange of ideas by providing access to all, in order that discovery and expression may spread. Compare this 'limited time' clause with 99 year copyrights and 17 year patents on such idiocies as 'one button push purchasing in web pages' as was claimed by Amazon.com and granted until a successful challenge just five years ago. Disgusting misuse is inevitable with Scalia's so-called Judicial Philosophy that 'money is speech' and that inevitablilty is due to the nature of Capitalism and its goal of monopolism.
No collective entity of any sort should be allowed to own a patent or copyright. Such ownership should be limited to biological individuals. Further, the length of time patents and copyrights are in force should be tied to the life span of the original owner/filer. When he expires, the patent/copyright should expire, not one moment sooner nor later. In other words, when the originator of a patent/copyright dies, it should immediately become part of the “Public Domain.”
Nothing is helped by giving ONE person the power currently given the Corporation. Nothing changes but how many hands hold the reins.
How is it a free market when the gov't chooses to regulate everything for smaller businesses? It is only a free market when ALL the citizens have a hand in shaping the economy, not just the 20% above the Gaussian income cutoff who own 85% of EVERYTHING. It is in government that we have 'equal value' at least ostensibly, and it is from there that we can influence and regulate the worst of capitalism.
And that is what Communitarianism and Co-ops are all about. (Please go back and checkout the links I posted earlier.) Moreover they are tried and extremely practical solutions. Our government is controlled by Corporate “Persons,” not biological persons.
The persons who have given Bush his 170 Million dollar lead over Kerry (12 : 1) are REAL persons, who merely profit from the Corporation. Thus it is SINGLE PERSONS who corrupt the system, by virtue of holdings. That, then, is the real target. HOLDINGS!
Such holdings probably not even have been possible without the legal fiction of “corporate personhood.”
Doesn't matter HOW they got it. The fact that they are able and willing to buy an election PROVES that the corruption is personal rather than institutional.
Time to have full public campaign financing, with preference voting to kill off the 'third party votes waste your vote' effect.
Personally, I don't think I know enough to butt into this conversation with my own opinions, so I'm wondering: what is your position on this and why?
Unity Over Diversity
- The Samaritan