Staunch SOPA Supporter, Marsha Blackburn, Says It's Time To Scrap SOPA

from the you-just-noticed? dept

Rep. Marsha Blackburn has been an interesting one to follow during this whole SOPA/PIPA fight. She's long been a staunch supporter of more draconian copyright laws (once claiming that fair use was like theft). She's also incredibly politically inconsistent. For example, we pointed out her ridiculous video talking about how dangerous it was to let Congress regulate the internet with respect to net neutrality. But even though SOPA was about regulating the internet at a much more basic and fundamental level, she was all for it.

In fact, just last week, at CES, she was vehemently defending the bill and insisting that it was absolutely necessary (at one point, it almost seemed like she and Rep. Darrell Issa might come to blows), and pretending that the tech industry must support SOPA, because of how awful it feels to "have your innovations stolen!"

But, now, she's changed her tune. It didn't happen back when even some of her biggest supporters threatened to campaign against her because of this single issue. But it happened now, where she's saying it's time to scrap the bill:
It’s clear that online piracy legislation in its current form is not workable. It’s time to scrap the bill and start over. I will continue to work with my colleagues to find the best possible solution to ensure the constitutionally guaranteed property rights of our nation’s innovators are protected.
Of course, even that statement is wrong. The Constitution does not guarantee property rights for innovators. It allows Congress to create limited monopoly privileges if (and only if) they promote the progress of science and the useful arts. If she can't get that right, it seems like she's starting from the wrong spot. But, in the short term, if even Marsha Blackburn is rejecting SOPA, the bill is in serious trouble.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 3:43am

    "I will continue to work with my colleagues to find the best possible solution"

    I wonder if she'll use this moment of clarity on the issue to realise that new laws are not the best way to achieve this. Unfortunately, it's not possible to legislate "stop killing your own market with region and format windowing" or "DRM only affects legit customers, morons".

     

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  2.  
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    anonymous, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 3:48am

    time for her to go, along with the rest of the thick fuckers that have no clue about technology, how the Internet works or what the people want! time for her and the rest to learn that the people are the ones that count the most, not corporations, because it's the people that have the last say, ie, THE VOTE!

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 3:48am

    See that is what you get for messing around with LoLCats.
    They can read you know.

    Youtube: cat is reading a book by unbeckannt on Jan 23, 2010.

     

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  4.  
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    GamerLEN, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 4:15am

    Marsha you're finally talking some sense.

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 4:26am

    It allows Congress to create limited monopoly privileges if (and only if) they promote the progress of science and the useful arts.


    You say that, but it's not really true. The Supreme Court will not enforce that “deal”. The message of Eldred v Ashcroft, affirmed by Golan v Holder, is very clear: Congress has been granted plenary power to fashion copyright.

    A paper promise, a parchment promise, that the courts will not enforce—is no deal. It is a worthless scrap of paper. A worthless scrap of parchment.

    Since the early 1700's the booksellers have been pressing the argument that copyright is a natural property right. They advanced that argument in Millar v Taylor (1769), in Donaldson v Beckett (1774), and in Wheaton v Peters (1834). They've never stopped advancing that argument, and since the formation of the World Intellectual Property Organization in 1969, they've gained popular use of the term, “intellectual property”.

    It's no longer a copyright “monopoly” —with a fourteen year term tracing its heritage to the Statute of Monopolies of 1623— but intellectual “property”.

    Today's courts will not enforce the “limits” on “monopoly”. The property argument has won the day. There is no deal.

     

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  6.  
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    The Luke Witnesser, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 4:28am

    Here lies the truth about SOPA/PIPA that even TechDirt has yet to report: what MPAA, RIAA, and Hollywood execs do not want you to see.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJIuYgIvKsc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzS5rSvZXe8

    The truth behind why these big companies responsible for SOPA and PIPA are also responsible for piracy itself is far more insidious than even their outmoded business model.

     

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  7.  
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    gorehound (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 4:50am

    Re:

    WE really need to get all of those asses who supported this Bill out ASAP.We need to also Boycott Big Content.They will not be seeing my Wallet.
    Censor Me !!!!
    Now I do it back to you !!! No MONEY !
    Buy Indie Stuff.....

     

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  8.  
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    John Doe, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 4:56am

    What about protecting our constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of speech?

    She is dropping support of this particular bill but not the idea of regulating the internet. Shows she doesn't get it.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:03am

    Re: What about protecting our constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of speech?

    What about protecting our constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of speech?


    Did you read Justice Ginsburg's opinion in Golan v Holder?

    No, it's tl;dr ...?

    Postcard synopis: Congress's plenary power to fashion intellectual property law is superior to the first amendment. That's what the court did.

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:11am

    Re:

    It won't last. She has backflipped to where she is now. She will backflip away at any time.

     

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  11.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:14am

    Re: Here lies the truth about SOPA/PIPA that even TechDirt has yet to report: what MPAA, RIAA, and Hollywood execs do not want you to see.

    Mind summing it up in a way that won't require me to kill my internet connection at work?

     

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  12.  
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    DannyB (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:18am

    Translation

    It’s clear that online piracy legislation in its current form is not workable.

    It's clear that protests are too great for the bill in its current form.

    WEASEL WORDS:
    * not workable -- what is not workable? -- the techniques they used: secrecy, no media coverage, name calling "nerds", one sided kangaroo "debates" and "hearings".

    It’s time to scrap the bill and start over.

    Let's start over -- with a new plan to sneak this through that won't get so much attention.

    KEY WORDS:
    * start over -- so we're not scrapping this stupid idea?

    I will continue to work with my colleagues to find the best possible solution

    I will work with other paided crooks to find a way to subvert the system for our paymasters

    WEASEL WORDS:
    * colleagues -- implies common paymaster
    * best possible solution -- for who?


    to ensure the constitutionally guaranteed property rights of our nation’s innovators are protected


    WEASEL WORDS:
    * constitutionally guaranteed property rights -- What about constitutionally guaranteed "for limited times"? From "limited times" follows that there is a guarantee of "Public Domain".
    * constitutionally guaranteed property rights -- so its all about money, and guaranteed money really means "entitlement"

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:24am

    Re: Translation

    property rights -- What about constitutionally guaranteed "for limited times"?

    “Limited times” is a condition of a statutory monopoly. But she reads the constitution as guaranteeing a property right. That's why she says, “fair use is theft”. She's talking in terms of a trespass (and “trespass” is a very old legal term of art) against property. She's not talking in terms of a regulated monopoly.

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:31am

    End monopolies end copyrights.

    Defend our freedom to share (or why SOPA is a bad idea) by TEDtalksDirector on Jan 18, 2012.

    Bakeries can't print sugar plates or allow kids to print those things because kids like to print cartoons that they make that are copyrighted so business can't offer anything or face ridiculous legal risks, that is what monopolies do they stop you and me from being able to produce something so we are dependent on someone else and need to pay taxes to those people, this is what reduces economic activity and shrink economies, this is what destroy creativity, innovation and the creation of wealth, this is what destroy countries.

    Now a granted monopoly(copyright) is even threatening the foundations of democracy itself, because in order to secure that monopoly there cannot be no freedoms.

     

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  15.  
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    demented, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:35am

    So in other words, tomorrow she'll be ranting incoherently about how Internet reviewers are all pirates and Youtube is run by Satan.

    Never trust a flipflopper to stick to anything.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 5:57am

    Copyright is the problem.

    Copyright is the tool that enables these powerful special interests to claim some sort of legitimacy, copyright is the root of all of it, that should be the target of everyone interested in ending this cycle for at least decades.

    I'm sure if copyright was repealed tomorrow it would resurface someday in the future, monopolies are very attractive and they always will find a way to resurface, but by ending it, people send a very strong message that if it gets to burdensome they are not going to accept it, if it threatens democracy it will be taken away.

    Those people don't know when to stop, they must be stopped and to do that we must do the impossible and that is break their monopolies, so everyone can see it can be done, so they get the message that who is in control is the people not them.

     

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  17.  
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    John Doe, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 6:11am

    Re: Re: Translation

    Lets give them property rights. Since IP is going to be considered real property, I can sell my digital content when I am done with it. Once I read my eBook I can put it on Craigslist. Same with my MP3 files, digital movies, etc.

    Ah but wait, then they tell us it is a license, not real property and we can't resell it.

    Ah but wait, isn't that like having your cake and eating it too? You get the best of both worlds, real and intellectual property rights.

    Doesn't seem quite right does it?

     

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  18.  
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    frosty840, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 6:17am

    I think at this point that this has all been a distraction from ACTA...

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 6:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Translation

    Ah but wait, then they tell us it is a license, not real property and we can't resell it.

    The great question of literary property is a vexing one (to paraphrase someone —Lord Camden?— I could look it up, but no matter who it was). One must be extremely careful not to read too much into short, convenient labels. Especially in an argument that's been going on for better than three centuries!

    The distinctions between chattels and intangibles perhaps cuts closer to the chase than an overly simplistic division into “property” and “monopoly”. The core of the argument is that the nature of the goods are fundamentally different: But the clever wordsmiths then can say, wait! stop! isn't “goods” merely another name for “chattels”? And thus the argument proceeds anon.

    Perhaps the best argument is that the great weight of experience has conclusively tended to show that unregulated monopolies are harmful.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 6:43am

    Oh, so NOW it's clear that it's not a good bill? After aggressively promoting it? And she says that just after the online backlash?

     

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  21.  
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    Keroberos (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 6:49am

    I'm not sure which possibility is more frightening, that our elected officials believe that the average voter is gullible enough to fall for this sudden change of heart on these bills, or the possibility that they may be right--the average voter is that gullible.

     

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  22.  
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    musiccitysongwriter (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 7:04am

    I understand the public would like everything for free. But the owners of the intellectual property need to be compensated. This is how we make our living. People who give our music for free, should be shut down. They make their living by selling ads that are alongside our product they are providing for free on their websites.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 7:09am

    Re:

    But the owners of the intellectual property need to be compensated. This is how we make our living.

    So fucking what.

    You people are so far over the line that I don't care anymore.

    Repeal the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act.

     

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  24.  
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    mgjr73, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 7:20am

    Give Power Back to Artists and Innovators. Not Corporations.

    Let's not stop with Congress because they will only listen to US during election season and then their ears are all for the highest bidders during their term. Let's call the REAL creators of what is being copyrighted to let them know that they are being given the power to have control over their inventions, art, creations, whatever you want to call it. They can have full control on how they can share it with their fans. They really won't need to turn over their "babies" to big industry who tells them what will and will not work. The internet has given artists direct access to fans. Fans do not have to go through the middleman to get to their idols. The artists and innovators have the power to make piracy irrelevant. Make it so it's not even worth for pirates to steal anything.

     

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  25.  
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    dcee (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 7:28am

    Re:

    Why aren't you selling you content in the same easy way AND TAKE THAT MONEY FOR YOU?

     

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  26.  
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    justice4sf (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 7:32am

    Congressman Howard Berman's Chief of Staff berates and curses at police officer.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynzqyyj6ew4

    The above video is the real reason the US Government and its politicians in Washington want to censor what is posted on sites like YouTube

    Congressman Howard Berman's Chief of Staff berates and curses at police officer. Then calls in favor and has traffic citation disappear.

    If SOPA/PIPA is enacted neither you or the almost 1000 viewers could have or would have seen this video about GOVERMENT MISUSE OF POWER, POLITICAL FAVORITISM AND BLATANT CORRUPTION.

     

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  27.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 7:36am

    Re:

    Sadly, your simplistic assessment of the situation does leave out many of the real factors you're facing in the modern marketplace, and actually blocks consideration of some of the major points. Not unusual, sadly, but if you'd like to read the last decade or so's posts on this site and others about the subject, you might learn more.

     

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  28.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 8:09am

    Re:

    Except flipflops.

     

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  29.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 8:12am

    Re:

    Bollocks, no-one deserves to be paid for their work, that's a social construct. Remember why Radio head and Nine-Inch Nails were dropped by their labels? Because "they weren't selling enough". Both immediately went out and proved thier old labels wrong.

     

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  30.  
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    Jay (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 8:29am

    Re: Re: Here lies the truth about SOPA/PIPA that even TechDirt has yet to report: what MPAA, RIAA, and Hollywood execs do not want you to see.

    Ugh...

    The first video is the one about how CNet helped to spread piracy. No mention of the PRO IP Act, or anything even remotely related to why the government has such power against you.

    The second video introduces our greatest friend Alki Davis. The guy wants to sue CNet for promoting piracy in the most obnoxious lawsuit I've seen since the twins kept suing FB for more money.

    The better idea is to get the ACLU involved. Allowing Davis to be a part of this lawsuit will turn this into a Charles Nesson affair.

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 9:01am

    Re: Re: Here lies the truth about SOPA/PIPA that even TechDirt has yet to report: what MPAA, RIAA, and Hollywood execs do not want you to see.

    The first one details how Big Content owned companies distributed not only the file sharing software(s), but also tested it by downloading (and therefore shared) copyrighted material and then led users to the best methods, and actually posted copyrighted files to be shared.

    The second one is about the young man being extradited from the UK for merely linking to copyrighted material.

    Pretty well done, though a touch on the angst filled side IMO. But, maybe that is necessary in today's environment.

     

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  32.  
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    Harry Kester, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 9:45am

    SOPA

    The disgrace of this sell out of to the predatory Music and Film industry cannot be forgoten, excused or justified. All the congressional dupes have now proven who their loyalties lay with. This is serious! We can no longer afford to "hire" BAD employees to administer our collective American lives.

     

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  33.  
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    ChurchSox (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 10:25am

    Congress is a series of tubes.

     

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  34.  
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    Paul from Hamburg, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 10:48am

    Re:

    First, any law designed to maintain the status quo and protect the future income of a specific group is almost certainly a bad law.

    Second, I might have some sympathy if it wasn't for the repeated attempts to extend copyrights. If I work today, I will get paid. If I want to get paid tomorrow, I need to work tomorrow. You write a song on one day, and then expect that you will get paid for that song every day for the rest of your life?

     

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  35.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 11:09am

    Re:

    That are full of shit, and vastly overpaid for their work..

     

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  36.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 11:23am

    Re: Re:

    And thanks to the internet...shit.

     

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  37.  
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    PT (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 11:37am

    Re:

    The fact that the Supremes will not enforce the Constitution and the property argument is currently on top, doesn't mean there is no deal. While the public may not be able to quote the Constitution, they do understand the deal at a subconscious level and are well aware they're being screwed. The fact that there's so much civil disobedience and contempt for copyright proves that. Maybe what's needed on the public side is less an argument about right and wrong and protecting artists' rights, and more something along the following lines:

    "Copyright is a deal between creators and the public intended to benefit both. However, it has been so corrupted that no person now living will ever see recent material enter the public domain. Since the public benefit of the deal is effectively abolished, why should the public give a rat's ass about the private benefit?"

     

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  38.  
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    PT (profile), Jan 20th, 2012 @ 11:48am

    Re:

    "But the owners of the intellectual property need to be compensated."

    Oh no they don't. The creators of intellectual property may deserve to be compensated. We actually have an arrangement for that. You can have the proceeds for a limited time, and then we get it in the public domain.

    Since nothing you create will enter the public domain during my or my children's lifetimes, I feel no obligation to keep my side of the bargain and compensate you.

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 20th, 2012 @ 4:59pm

    Re:

    Ah, I thought that Nuge would receive backup reinforcements sooner or later.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
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    Gene Cavanaugh (profile), Jan 21st, 2012 @ 9:24am

    Marsha Blackburn post

    You said: "Of course, even that statement is wrong. The Constitution does not guarantee property rights for innovators. It allows Congress to create limited monopoly privileges if (and only if) they promote the progress of science and the useful arts."

    GOOD FOR YOU! As an IP attorney, I am constantly amazed and disheartened by how many people don't understand that!

    Even my title, "IP attorney", is misleading. It isn't property. It is a right given for a limited duration (except for copyright, where it seems to be permanent).

     

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  41.  
    identicon
    mickeywhite, Jan 22nd, 2012 @ 9:57am

    Why does Marsha, (Co-Sponsor of SOPA), Want Congress to Regulate the Internet? Why not just say NO FEDERAL branch (the FCC and congress and the federal courts included) has any authority to decide or rule on any aspect concerning the Internet?

    BUT Marsha Blackburn did Vote FOR: Patriot Act Reauthorization, Electronic Surveillance, Funding the REAL ID Act (National ID), Foreign Intelligence Surveillance, Thought Crimes “Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act, Warrantless Searches, Employee Verification Program, Body Imaging Screening, Patriot Act extension; and only NOW she is worried about free speech, privacy, and government take over of the internet?

    Marsha Blackburn is my Congressman.
    See her “blatantly unconstitutional” votes at :
    http://mickeywhite.blogspot.com/2009/09/tn-congressman-marsha-blackburn-votes.html
    Mickey

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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