Wow, you must have a different U.S. history than I do. They never lose the first lawsuit. The first person that manages to survive long enough to be likely to lose gets they just drop or settle. So does the next one and the next one. All the ones that aren't willing to waste money fighting until that point just give them what they want. It's not like this is breaking new ground or anything here
Re: Liars actually believe that nobody knows the truth
Unfortunately, they know some people know the truth. They know the truth can be easily proved, and their claims could be debunked by even the most cursory of checks. They also know that a significant number of people are either too lazy to do a cursory check and or are willfully blind .
The dilemma in politics is that if you were decent you wouldn't want to have power over people.. unless you force someone in who doesn't want the job you get either selfish assholes or self-righteous delusionals.
Apple comes out looking fine. It is hardly Apple's responsibility to make sure Ireland's laws are valid. It would be like if a company in the U.S. got a massive fine because a state law that it was following all along was eventually found to be unconstitutional. Blaming the company for following the law is pretty ridiculous.
You've got to have at least one token item in their somewhere that the lobbyists can make a big fuss about and you put through anyway, make a big thing of how you don't answer to them and say "See, we aren't in their pocket"!
Copyright isn't a black and white concept. It doesn't have to be either "we have it" or "we don't have it". The purpose of trying to get people to associate copyright with theft is to attach all the emotions that are attached to the concept of theft to the concept of copyright infringement. This helps with things like extending copyright law over and over (if it's "stealing" then it must "belong" to the copyright holder, and having copyright expire is taking something that "belongs" to them, right?) and it helps whenever they want people to make sacrifices of freedom (especially other people's freedom) in the name of controlling copyright infringement or when they want to put in levies to compensate them for all the money that is being stolen and such. It's basically propaganda.
Techdirt and most readers aren't necessarily anti-copyright, but for the most part they will certainly not agree with the direction that those lobbyists are trying to take copyright, and their campaign to associate copyright with theft is part of that agenda.