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Absolutely the Last Thing about "IP" Today!

I do not like the term "intellectual property". I think that term has a lot of unproven assumptions packed into it, the most glaring being that assertion that works of authorship are property.

This isn't front page headlines, but I think that what Richard M. Stallman has written about "Intellectual Property" is worth reading.

Great Moments in IP

Please read this article on how the US Patent Office is helping protect one man's right to profit from his intellectual property. I mean, that's what patents are for. Right?

Link via my darling husband.

The Outsourcing Blues

Curt at Selling Waves again does my work for me in pointing out another great article in Wired about free trade, this time in the context of the outsourcing of IT jobs to India. Read more »

The Picket Line

Here is a guy who has really put his money where his mouth is.

The post linked above contains some interesting ruminations on ethics from an anarchist point of view.

Is Justice Real?

Below in his post "Many kinds of objective justice", Micha asserts:

The basic underlying assumptions many of us have about justice are simply incompatable with other people's assumptions. There is no higher authority, no source of evidence, no argument that could even conceivably be made to reconcile these differences.

Whither IP?

Thanks to shonk for alerting me to this article in Wired magazine, which compares the state of modern American IP law to the state of the American shipping industry in the late 1960s, which is not a strange as it sounds.

What happens when a government tries to prohibit something? People find a way to do it anyway.

Your Tax Dollars at Work #1

It makes me feel all warm inside when I read this. There are different ways of knowing. Y'know, man?

The Technology of Freedom

Along with crypto, wireless networks are a major technology of mass decentralization. A new wireless standard with an effective range of 50km is about to roll out. Those hoary old monopolists in the land-line telephone business ought to be shaking in their boots.

Link via SlashDot.

President Screamapillar

If the title makes no sense to you, then you haven't read the Bleat from whence came the remix Brian told us about, which apparently has spawned a movement.

Famous Last Words

Infinite thanks to blogger and frequent commenter John Venlet for this link to a short essay on Democracy by H.L. Mencken: "Last Words". Enjoy.

Search Warrant Sold Separately


Am I the only one who finds this toy a little weird? I think it's the gnarly kicked-in-door playset that really gives me the willies. Read more »

Reductio ad Onion

The authors were trying to make some clever point about the obvious deficiencies of capitalism, I'm sure, but this is still the best plan for Iraq's reconstruction I've ever seen.

Vermont Town May Attempt to Secede to New Hampshire

The Rutland Herald reports:

The Select Board [of Killington, Vermont] is considering asking for voter approval to cut ties with the Green Mountain State and essentially have the town become a landlocked piece of New Hampshire.

Born out of frustration with what they characterize as a tax system that treats Killington unfairly, Killington town officials insist they are sincerely looking into switching states.

Canadian Citizen "Disappeared"

Read here the story of Syrian-born Candian citizen Maher Arar who was turned over to Syria for 10 months of interrogation under torture.

Utilitarian, Shmutilitarian

In Jonathan's post "Kinsley on protectionism", in response to my complaint about utilitarian arguments, my co-blogger Randall McElroy opines "... John Q. Public is more receptive to utilitarian arguments than to Mises In One Lesson". I can't comment on Mises In One Lesson, whatever that is. I know that many people agree with Randall, but I can only speak to what convinced me that free trade is good. Read more »