The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Another note on Republicans

They seem to be moving to change protected works (so called IP) laws, to make them less punitive.  I didn’t expect this, but it makes sense:

1) Hollywood is a Democratic bailiwick, and IP is how they make their money.

2) Libertarians took a couple percent in a lot of states, sometimes more.  Something that can peel back some of that support makes sense.

3) It’s something they can do which appeals to the young, who hate the current regime of protected works.

4) It is fairly populist, and when Dems vote against it, as they will, it will demoralize the Democratic base, again.

Republicans aren’t doing this for any good reasons, but if they do get serious about it, I’ll support them on the issue.

The Democratic party is so right wing now that left flanking the party on some issues makes sense for the Republicans.  And in a sense, this isn’t even all that left, 19th century conservatives hated patents and copyright, and for good reason.


Some Words on the Republican Party


The Gaza Reminder


  1. Neil

    According to Techdirt, via Cory Doctorow, they pulled the position paper already, saying it had not been adequately reviewed before being posted.

    I agree that it would be good policy, and good tactics for the GOP.

  2. jonst

    There was a whiff of the ideological origins of a position like this in a speech by Judge Richard Posner in which he noted–to him– the rather incongruous posture of the GOP supporting ‘deregulation’ as a societal good, in and of itself. While at the same time calling on the govt to increasingly, regulate the only growth industry we have…IP. This was in a speech made back around the time the DMCA was passed.

  3. Mark Gisleson

    Republican ideologues sometimes sneak one out, but it took less than 48 hours for the RNC to run screaming from this position which also criticized copyright law pretty heavily.

    How much more interesting would things be if the Republicans occasionally took actually conservative positions on these issues?

  4. I’ve often wondered how in some European countries it came to pass that the party with the most left-wing name was now controlling the most right-wing policies (and vice versa)…and now I guess we are seeing the inkling in USA politics how this happens.

    That the ideological ground shifts until one party loses ground until pinched into their most radical wing…while the other party now forcing this shift by having taken over all the middle ground, now finds itself no longer defending its outside wing’s positions…making it vunerable to this flanking movement. Of course, this can also only occur due to a country’s political system where only two parties exist in any practical sense.

    It also shows, that politics is kabuki theater, for if these ideologies were truly foundational beliefs, these movements wouldn’t even be possible.

    It also shows, that at least currently the plutocrats/oligarches rely only on 2 answers to any question, that nuance and compromise have been lost, that these so-called thinking men with their belief tanks do not actually develop practical solutions, only tactics and strategies to represent their power interest. Which explains how the French and Russians years ago could only conclude progress would only be found by eliminating this group of people.

    Also, these somewhat surprising calls for secession in the once united USA, for the first time has given me understanding for how a civil war can occur in a society; how brother can be turned against brother, when these same two men should meet say if traveling in Russia would be buying each other beers instead of reaching for guns.

    I believe it is attributed to Jay Gould robberbaron in the first USA gilded age…how he remarked “I can hire one half of the working class to kill the other half.” As I age, I now see this was more than just whiskey talk. People choose to be unreachable.

  5. Ian Welsh

    Dems and Republicans switched positions on a lot of issues in the past, I expect they’ll do so again, though not quite yet.

  6. I’ve seen right-wing libertarians criticize IP law for two decades. It’s one of the few issues on which I’m willing to agree that they are arguing in good faith.

  7. William Fields

    No shock really. The ideology of both “viable ” parties is not all that different. It only dfferes in matters the plutocrats could not care less about such as gay marriabe, abortion, the second amendment and capital punishment to name a few.

  8. Neil is correct.

    Here are the details and the paper.

    House Republicans Tell Truth: Copyright Law Destroys Markets Not So Fast

    Ian is of course right about parties switching positions, a fact I was well aware of watching Lincoln.

    Incidently, under Bush II one area besides the military and authoritarian state that grew was patents. After all if you don’t build bridges, then the least you can do for trolls is give them more fodder (explanation: Trolls live under bridges)

  9. MishaRoz

    I know you probably don’t care but have you considered putting Facebook like/share button on your article pages? I don’t mind sharing the URL but would love it if the like/share button were available as well. Thank you…

  10. I’m with @MishaRoz on that FB “like” button thing. I know it’s easy to disparage – so much of FB is lamentable TMI, but a social network is what you make of it. My paucity of “friends” is proof-positive of this. 🙂 (The ones that have stuck around are pretty high-quality.)

  11. jawbone

    Does doing anything with Facebook give that corporation the idea it can take over info from anyone visiting Ian’s site?

    (I do not do F’bk. Altho’, every so often it claims it has users who want to “friend” me. How’s that happen when I never opened an account?)

  12. jawbone

    BTW, speaking of government interference in internet freedoms, what’s happening with the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement/treaty Obama apparently was working on while in Asia?

    Every once in a while discussion of it pops up, then nothing.

    Word is that it is not designed to defend privacy or freedom on the internet.

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