"Sorry, but they aren't offering any alternatives that make the money that DVDs make."
Sorry but this is not an argument. They have not innate right to make a certain amount of money. Consumers felt that a DVD was worth so much money and were willing to pay that much, now they want the digital product and feel that it is worth less. It is what it is, but it is not the consumers problem to deal with, it is the providers problem.
I do have a crazy idea for that, and I am sure that it has been suggested before. I know it would take some working to make it work right but I would support a 100% Death tax along with some sort of inheritance disbursement when you turn 18. Essentially, everyone starts adult life on the same footing instead of it being luck of the draw.
There would have to be some other policies to go along with this I am sure.
That is why it makes sense to convert from an income tax to a consumption tax at the same time. Rich people still spend money to consume things and they do it at a much greater level than poor people. If both these things were implemented, the traditional tax haven would be non-existent, because there would be no taxes to hide your money from, the only way not to get taxed is not to spend it.
Even without calculating I believe that that does not make sense. What you are saying is that Americans, long known as the biggest consumers in the world, pay a level of income tax equal to half of their consumption. I do not think that that is the case. Just look at your own paycheck, see how much they take out of your paycheck for federal income tax in a month, then compare that to how much you spend in a month. For the 50% consumption tax to make sense your tax would have to be half your spending.
Before I get destroyed for this analogy, I know that he/she may not be representative of the whole population and the amount that you pay in income taxes is when you file your taxes either with more taxes owed or a tax return. But it could be a decent estimate without going into to much detail.
Of course you could not just flip a switch on any of these policies. I imagine that the best way to implement something like this would be to slowly decrease the income and payroll taxes, while at the same time increase the consumption/carbon taxes. I mean, do you really think that any rational person would ever advocate that kind of change in an abrupt manner? Just cause it will take time to implement, does not mean that it is a bad idea.
A consumption tax, essentially a federal sales tax. It says it at the end of making a point. It would probably need to be in the 15-20% range, although I am not an economist so that is a guess, but if you were not paying income tax the price jump would not effect your standard of living at all and you would not have to "do your taxes" every year. This would result in people paying taxed on how much they spend instead of how much they make. There are some logistical hurdles, such as, what if everyone saves among others? But that would be a good thing overall as if everyone increased savings then that would reduce the need for social security which would pump more money into the consumer economy to be saved or spent (ie taxed) and then would strengthen the economy even more. Not to say that there would not be issues to address, but it is an idea that has been supported by pure economists (with little or no political leanings) for years at least.
The bottom line for me is this: Corporations only have one legal responsibility and that is to make money (fiduciary responsibility). So any rights that you grant them are applied only to this. In fact it may be considered criminal, in the US at least, to act in a humanitarian way if it can be definitively proved that that act is not in the best interest of making company money.
Humans on the other hand have the capability to make decisions that are not only good for themselves, but for the society as a whole. Teachers are a great example of this, especially teachers of younger children, where the pay is slightly less than that of someone who breaks rocks with other rocks. These people, who often could do many other things with the years of education that are required to teach in the US, choose to make less in order to enrich society (and no I am not a teacher). Legally corporations can not do this.
So, do all members of society take the responsibilities of our society as seriously as the rights? No, no setup of this nature is perfect, but at least they have that ability.
Which is why I get very irritated when corporations speak of "rights" (IP or other rights, see Verizon and Net Neutrality for a good example). With rights come responsibility, but these corporations only have responsibility to their shareholders not citizenry at large and so should not get the rights of the citizenry either.
If you read the decision it comes down to the fact that the end user is not paying for the content, they are paying to rent equipment. The networks argument is that the transmission counts as a public performance of their work, but the court calls BS and basically says that since only the user requesting the show is the only one that can view it, it is not a public performance. I am not a lawyer though so I could have read it wrong, but that is what I am getting from it.
You are correct, but there are technologies currently in existence to mitigate this effect. Long range wi-fi comes to mind among others. But the wireless carriers would rather milk customers than spend money on better infrastructure.
The reason that congress is upset about the "leaks" and not the underlying actions is that they already knew about them, or at least had a good idea about what is going on. No one was surprised, therefore no one speaks out in surprise and anger. That is what really scares me...
Just to be clear the spectrum crunch has nothing to do with data caps. The spectrum crunch refers to how fast data moves not how much data. The only way that the users can help with the spectrum crunch is to have less users.
Think of it like this. Say there was a water pipe running down your street. This pipe pumps one gallon of water per hour. If five people are connected to the pipe, each person is getting 1/5 of a gallon of water every hour. To increase that speed, you need to either increase the size of the pipe or remove a user from the pipe. Telling a person that they can only have 20 gallons of water a month does very little to help that speed when all the people are using the water at the same time. There are some instances when it would help, but for the most part, people are just going to start using water only when they need it the most. They will still tend to use the water at the same time and the water will still pump at the same speed. The only thing that will happen is that the pipe will be unused at all during random hours as people try to conserve and not go over the limit.
The fact that people but into the "data caps to combat the spectrum crunch" lie, really irritates me, because it it blatant misdirection in an attempt to increase profits.
"Here's the real funny thing, you can't download stained glass windows, or frescoes."
I can't download a CD either, I can download the music on the CD, sort of like I can take a picture of the window or fresco. Both are copies, yet for some reason some like to argue that they are different. I really do not understand it.
I was trying to apply it to the real world but to keep it digital.
The government could set up a site, free-speech.gov, and say you can say whatever you want on this one site, but every other web site must pass a review board before going live. But since you can still post on that one site, incidentally monitored, but not censored, by the government, then your free speech rights are not affected.
By following your argument you could claim that the government could only allow you to speak freely in a one block radius of Washington DC and say, "Since you can speak freely here, your free speech rights are not affected by being required to be mute everywhere else. You can just not speak on any other property than this one."
What about contributors to the blog that have not violated copyright, they lose their forum for speech? What about the people who comment on that blog, didn't they lose some speech rights? There were many people legitimately using that blog to exercise their rights that no longer could do so after it was seized. Whether the violations were justified or not may be another argument, but there is no argument that the violations occurred, it is a fact.