-12 votes

For you anti-Intellectual Property people. Do you think this is cool?

It appears Urban Outfitters copied this girl's ideas, and may have copied designs from other amateur jewelers too:


How can you defend something like this? Can't you see that it's a NATURAL RIGHT to own the product of your labor? An idea is the product of the mind's labor, so that private property ought to be protected. Theft of intellectual property is not cool.

Dr. Paul supports protection of intellectual private property ("I favor enforcement of intellectual property rights...": http://interviews.slashdot.org/story/08/02/05/1511225/Ron-Pa...), and the Constitution does as well. It's a natural right. So please, do not post any more anti-intellectual private property pro-theft posts, such as that from Adam Kokesh. They are in direct opposition to Dr. Paul's views.

And by the way, the brilliant Austrian economist Murray Rothbard defended intellectual property as well. As did Lysander Spooner.

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By the way

"And by the way, the brilliant Austrian economist Murray Rothbard defended intellectual property as well."


Maybe you should actually read this. He's defending contract-based IP.

There's an important distinction to be made

that's usually glossed over in these discussions: IP supporters like to talk about owning one's ideas, and say that the contents and products of one's own brain are his or her sole property. They're right, but this argument is a non sequitur when applied to IP law. No one is arguing that it is moral (or even technologically possible) to forcefully penetrate someone's mind and steal their ideas. What actually happens in intellectual property violations is mere mimicry, wherein some configuration of neurons, bits, or materials owned by the "criminal" resembles one owned by the "victim". A claim of theft is made when in fact nothing has been removed from the owner's posession.

If you want to keep other people from using an idea of yours, you have a legitimate right to do so as long as you don't initiate force. The nonagression principle isn't complicated. Already, we have IP laws that are virtually null in many venues due to the fact that they are unenforcable, and distributers of digital content are turning to annoying but perfectly legitimate DRM schemes that can limit unathorized sharing without pointing a gun at anyone's head. These methods are not 100% effective, as people are always working to come up with cracks and workarounds, but they're a vastly more effective than and morally superior to anything the state can accomplish.

Also note the distinction between arbitrary, universal IP enforcement and enforcement of voluntary agreements. If you make a prior, voluntary contract with someone about exactly how, when, and if they are to use and share an idea of yours, you have a perfectly legitimate grievance with them when and if they breach that contract. The penalty should, of course, be stipulated in the contract. Enforcement of such contracts requires no special, seperate branch of property rights.

Clothing, even

high fashion clothing, is not intellectual property, is not an invention, and cannot be patented. Same with food recipes.

Jewelry seems to fall into the same category.

I was just going to say the

I was just going to say the same thing. I would bet $100.00 that Ron Paul does not support IP in jewlery charm design

Half truths are a lie

The government protects IP for a period of time. They protect physical property forever. Even the most ardent IP supporter believes ideas are not the same as physical property

As far as Ron Paul supporting IP, if Ron Paul wipes his @ss with sandpaper, does that mean we all should do the same?

You are allowed to protect your ideas, the same way you are allowed to protect your property by keeping it private. Once you release the idea to the public, you no longer own it. You released it...

You made an anology about cars... Who invented the car, who invented the engine? should they be the only ones allowed to produce it? Suppose they die, and pass the company on, yet the new owner does not like cars so he refuses to make them. Should the world go with out cars?

Funny thing is, the girl said she invented the jewelry in 2008 but there is stuff on the market older than that... So aprenently the pot is calling the kettle black, or the jewelry was just not very unique..


You are correct in believing that one should own the product of his labor. Problem is that a mere idea (design, plan, schematics, etc) is not a product of labor. Like most things in life, its the execution that matters. Why should somebody own an idea? How can somebody own an idea? IP strangles commerce and creativity and gives the government yet another to deprive individuals of their freedom. A true free market gives us enough ways for people to profit from their ideas. Additionally, many of these problems can be solved through contractual agreements between private parties.

Umm sorry but...

there is no way I would expect the government to do anything else but fuck
everything up by even attempting a solution to this. Sucks for the girl, but in reality, she was making flat metal state-shaped necklaces with a hole in them and a chain. Too simple to get riled-up about. No clear-cut proof of theft neither as there are a dozen other people on Etsy making the same exact thing

i think it's funny how you

i think it's funny how you are on a ron paul website and you are asking people who don't agree with you to please shut up. kokesh does not have to shut up and neither does anyone else

i don't believe in intellectual property either.

sure you have a right to your thoughts and ideas except when they leave your head.

if you came up with a design for an engine that runs on nothing .. would you go post your design on the public internet? or give a copy to every car manufacturer? obviously not. so if you do something like that ... create something and release it to the public whether on the internet or in the marketplace ... you already went to market with it ... which means people can buy your product, take it apart, customize it ... etc ...

the fact that they have more capital than you do and could potentially be more profitable is not a violation of your rights.

All paper money eventually returns to its real intrinsic value, zero. - Voltaire


"the fact that they have more capital than you do and could potentially be more profitable is not a violation of your rights."

Well said, sir.

Funny how people always can

Funny how people always can somehow justify theft, it's just the median that changes. Say Foord was coming out with a new design for his model T and his neighbor or people that are out and about somehow had a device to search his home somehow,(camera) or he somehow tells his closest advisors confidential information on his new design but somehow someone is listening in his own home.(mics) Does that motivate innovation isn't that theft? May as well sit tight and not talk or do anything for that matter. You have just killed everything that Capitalism through innovation is about.

Now imagine that he and others like him curse out loud maybe mumbling lies or inconsistent actions or ideas, would you blame him? How would he leave his home knowing that at any moment those other people can break in.


The word patent means open. The original idea was that any design could be open for inspection and then improvements could be made and further patents issued. Then royalties could be paid to the original inventors for their contribution.

When this is done and the contribution of each piece of intellectual property is recognised then there is creative abundance. What has happened unfortunately is that the big corporations have entire departments that do nothing else but create patents on everything under the sun including human DNA and protect their patents from any infringement using legal intimidation to generate an atmosphere of fear that stifles creativity. Very often the persons targeted have not copied anything but have nevertheless come up with and implemented the same idea and sometimes even before the big corporation. Nevertheless they can be put out of business.

The question then is not whether IP should be protected, it should. The question is how do we create an environment that encourages and rewards creativity and cooperation while discouraging predatory behaviour in the enforcement of IP laws and the monopolising of creative productions through the control of money and the legal process.

"Jesus answered them: 'Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.'" (John 8:34-36)

What is frightening about IP is

the way the Government's are using IP as an excuse for control of the internet and to gain support for such totalitarian excess from authors and artist who would protest such actions unless they stood to gain financially.

If not us than who?

Yes this is really the issue

Yes this is really the issue as I see it... The abuse, and being used as an excuse to expand govt censorship and control, and maintain big media monopolies to stamp out competition and political dissent. There is the same abuse in the food industry now with companies genetically modifying plants and animals just so that they can patent them. But the root of the problem is not property, but the growing crony capitalism and fascism in our system.

If you want to maintain control over your thoughts and ideas...

...you should keep them to yourself.

Historical tangent about intellectual property disputes

from Wikipedia:

Newton later became involved in a dispute with Leibniz over priority in the development of infinitesimal calculus. Most modern historians believe that Newton and Leibniz developed infinitesimal calculus independently, although with very different notations. Occasionally it has been suggested that Newton published almost nothing about it until 1693, and did not give a full account until 1704, while Leibniz began publishing a full account of his methods in 1684....

Starting in 1699, other members of the Royal Society (of which Newton was a member) accused Leibniz of plagiarism, and the dispute broke out in full force in 1711. The Royal Society proclaimed in a study that it was Newton who was the true discoverer and labelled Leibniz a fraud. This study was cast into doubt when it was later found that Newton himself wrote the study's concluding remarks on Leibniz. Thus began the bitter controversy which marred the lives of both Newton and Leibniz until the latter's death in 1716.

Can you imagine if this were today? The lawyers would grow rich, the mathematicians would grow bitter, and some corporation would certify some math teachers as the only "approved" instructors, charging ridiculous amounts of money to anyone wanting the secret to modern scientific technology.

Another example is the Wright Brothers...

I personally believe Benjamin Franklin was a much happier person....

According to Wikipedia,
Franklin was a prodigious inventor. Among his many creations were the lightning rod, glass armonica (a glass instrument, not to be confused with the metal harmonica), Franklin stove, bifocal glasses and the flexible urinary catheter. Franklin never patented his inventions; in his autobiography he wrote, "... as we enjoy great advantages from the inventions of others, we should be glad of an opportunity to serve others by any invention of ours; and this we should do freely and generously."[19]

His inventions also included social innovations, such as paying forward. Franklin's fascination with innovation could be viewed as altruistic; he wrote that his scientific works were to be used for increasing efficiency and human improvement. One such improvement was his effort to expedite news services through his printing presses.[20]

If I see someone else's

If I see someone else's product and reproduce and sell it as the same brand as the other person's product that is fraud and that is wrong. I should be upfront about it being my own recreation. But the only way IP laws can work is to prohibit people from using their own property in the manner they wish.
You can't own the ideas in someone else's head. Even if that idea started with you, once you put it out there it is now an idea in other people's heads as well. Everyone has their own thoughts. You don't get to claim ownership over every idea for that product as the idea reproduces from person to person.
Also, IP creates monopolies. monopolies almost always have to be backed by force in order to remain a monopoly. If you don't believe in the initiation of force than you should not seek systems for maintaining monopolies.

Ending IP would make costs go way up

No imagine there wasn't any IP. How would inventors be compensated for their work? Well the costs for the product would skyrocket and stay high until the product could be copied by someone else. Only after the inventor was compensated for their work and a copy was available would the price come down.

So you want the latest iPhone. OK, pay $20,000. The R&D, etc. has to be paid for. This stuff isn't free. And since profits will be gone when an copy is on the market you got to pay up.

I can't see how innovators would continue to work when there isn't any profit in doing it. Oh, you will have a few that would spend years of R&D on their own, in their basement for kicks but no investor would put up a dime without a payback.

So let's end IP and see innovation screech to a halt or see prices skyrocket for anything else.

What a great plan.

Bullshit! Real world evidence


Real world evidence to the contrary: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zL2FOrx41N0

intellectual property

is a tool of the corporations.

corporations that have been granted more rights than human beings.

corporations that consume public resources, like law enforcement, the judiciary, and the government bureaucracy FAR in excess of their contribution.

the waiting line to get all the intellectual property sorted out is so long that it would take every judge and every court in the world to get completed, while ignoring every other need of the people.

the burden of defending property LIES WITH THE PROPERTY HOLDER.


yet, corporations manufacture an endless stream of paperwork, to own every idea in the world, with umpteen different companies claiming ownership of the same and/or overlapping ideas.

but they can't afford to defend their own property. do they spend their own resources on protecting their so called property?


they spend the public's money on defense of their own property, by abusing the public resources in the form of the government, the courts, and law enforcement.

this is so out of control, that there is NO REPAIR POSSIBLE.

there are more attorneys per capita here, then any other place in the world.

and while our corporations force a prison planet upon us, in the guise of protecting their own "property", they make us FOOT THE BILL.

it's insane. and it's completely out of control.

if you don't want your idea to be thought of by someone else or observed, then you better friggin bury it 100 miles deep and surround it with your personal security guards, land mines, attack dogs, and chain about 1000 lawyers to the vault.

cause i'm tired of this shit.

there is no fixing it.

there are natural property laws, which spring forth from natural law. i am in total agreement with natural property law, which primarily deals with REAL property.

i might be open to salvaging "idea as property", but no one has yet to be able to prove to me that a workable system is possible for "thought/idea as property". side effects like the desire for one world government, and the creation of paper tiger companies and therefore paper tiger countries, are just a few.

but what we have now is an abomination.

in a perfect world, where man was moral, corporations would not be people.

i'll submit to the idea that is possible to reform the system


we have removed super human rights from corporations.

The issue to me is duration

Jewelry is on general display in public places and has always been prone to knock offs (by large companies or the smallest jewelers).
Licensing takes care of copyright, just as it does for software or music. Every book simply would have the explicit agreement that you would not copy it when you read it. For jewelry and art its a bit tougher, but in principle art (like music or pornography) could be protected by licensing. Then if someone copied it, it would be known there was an illegal chain of custody.
Insofar as patent law is an administrative simplification of licensing I am ok with it. I think I would also be willing to give the benefit of the doubt to the first to register.
However, the duration of the patent or copyright is a step too far. I definitely am against a copyright living past the creator. I would think 20 years is a good rule of thumb.

How have licensing protected

How have licensing protected pirating of music and movies?

It has failed miserably. Someone can copy it and put it on the internet with no tracks left behind. Even if they do it and are caught, fine, the record company can sue them for a paltry sum.

Plan for eliminating the national debt in 10-20 years:

Overview: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/my-plan-for-reducin...

Specific cuts; defense spending: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/more-detailed-look-a

A challange to anti-IP folk:

Ayn Rand spent twelve years writing her masterpiece, Atlas Shrugged, published by Random House. Without IP, another publisher could have reprinted the book within a few weeks and sold it at a lower price -- because the second publisher would not have had the expenses of paying the author or editors or marketing personnel for their work -- only the costs of printing, and distribution. Random House could not possibly have charged as little for the book as a rival publishing house could have done.

Without IP laws, what market mechanism could have protected the original author and publishing house? Surely they deserved to profit from their work? How many authors would spend so many years creating such works, knowing that their books could be copied by rival publishers with impunity, and not a penny of royalties going to the author?

I am no fan of government, and I know there are huge problems with IP -- but I still have trouble visualizing how an author can make an honest living without it. Please, someone enlighten me.

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition, http://www.amazon.com/Most-Dangerous-Superstition-Larken-Ros...

Shakespeare went to dozens and dozens of publishers.

In a non-IP world, Shakespeare went to dozens of publishers ...ALL AT ONCE. That is he sold his story to MANY publishers all at the same time (basically). All authors did that. The popular ones made announcements and the publishers came, contract in hand. The Author was happy because many different publishers would be publishing their story. Publishers from other countries too would come. The more the better. And Publishers hated that. They knew the advantages of getting the story to market first. But still, they found ways to deal in this market competition. They become well known for ADDING special things to the books they printed. Maps, drawings, special paper inlays, engravings, and hardy book bindings. IP was the first copyright system was really a monopoly grant for publishers.

Your problem with a non-IP world is the usual problem all people have when asked to FREE something... something they are not used to seeing as free. Its hard to imagine!

Yes, you are right. It is hard to imagine a world with lots of freedom in areas where we are not use to seeing such freedom. 30 years ago, no one could imagine a world without ATTnT being a monopoly. If I brought it up, people just laughed and said, "look, we have enough telephone poles and we don't need more companies putting up more polls and wires." So you see, its a failure of imagination.

For most people, its hard to imagine the end of the Drug War, where hard drugs are "legal". That is very hard for most people to imagine - their minds race to images of millions more drug addicts. Indeed, this was the fear spread wide when the end of the alcohol prohibition came - fear that we would be making a million more drunks & alcoholics. But it did not happen, we have about the same amount, no more and no less.

Yes, its hard to imagine a world where all the major interstate freeways are privately owned, much like all the major airlines are privately owned. Its hard to imagine a monetary system without a banking cartel call the Federal Reserve. Its just hard to imagine what the world would look like under freedom.

And THAT is all our fault. Libertarians have been cowards to do the imagining for the rest of us. Why? Because they KNOW that they will be wrong. Freedom is dynamic. Its much easier to imagine a world with LESS freedom, hence all the dystopian movies and books like 1984 and Robo Cop and Gattaca and Brave New World and Hunger Games. But being wrong about FREEDOM's good effects, should not stop us all from dreaming that dream.

I challenge all libertarians to do the 10 year dream---imagine one thing free and extrapolate that 10 years from today. Imagine you got into a car accident, then you were in a coma for 10 years. But to your surprise, just after a miracle drug frees you from your coma, "free market money appeared", or "the highways were sold off for debt", or "IP ended" and yes Sony's & Disney's stock value fell, .... or "Drugs where legalized", or the "FDA & INS & CIA" ended.

What would that world look like? As you wake up from your coma and your now grown children drive you home on 'free-market freeways', as they light up and pass a joint to you in their automated-networked " hands free" car, as you passed over the Mexican national boarder in your 'hands free car' going 195 mph all without without frantically looking for a passport well on your way to Costa Rica.... WHAT WOULD COULD that world look like? Good? Desirable? Nice? Friendly? BETTER?

We libertarians need to start painting that world, and show those who have limited imaginations what FREEDOM COULD LOOK LIKE. We need to stop with the dystopian warnings, and start selling the "sizzle" and the "aroma" to the delicious steak called Freedom.


Yes, please BUY this wonderful libertarian BOOK! We all must know the History of Freedom! Buy it today!

"The System of Liberty: Themes in the History of Classical Liberalism" ...by author George Smith --
Buy it Here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/05211820

Nice story about Shakespeare . . .

but is it true? I read through his biography on Wikipedia, and the only corroboration I could find is that one of his early plays was performed by three different theater troupes. Shakespeare didn't write novels or even "stories." Ever. He wrote plays, sonnets and two long narrative poems. In those days, plays were performed, not published as books, so Shakespeare got money from theater owners as a playwright and as an actor in his own plays. His sonnets were published privately -- NOT widely distributed by multiple publishers. His real bread-and-butter was his plays. In 1593 and 1594, when the theatres were closed because of plague, he published two narrative poems which were popular and reprinted several times -- but I don't know if they were reprinted by different publishers. What's your source, Treg?

On your philosophical points, I entirely agree with you. It's often hard to imagine how things would work in a free society -- when government has crippled them for so long and in so many different ways. Sometimes I feel like a man with two legs broken by government, who has to listen to them proudly proclaiming that if they didn't give me crutches, I wouldn't be able to walk at all . . . and I dream about what it would by like to run free. To fly.

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition, http://www.amazon.com/Most-Dangerous-Superstition-Larken-Ros...


I emailed Stephan Kinsella your question. This is his response:

All this means is she or her publisher would face competition. There are lots of ways to make money. Sell the book. Maybe you can't charge as much as you could in a copyright world. So that means it's a monopoly price now. She would have a first mover advantage. She could sell them at a higher price, and then when people start bootlegging lower the price. She could write a sequel and refuse to release it until a bunch of fans pre-purchase it. She could be a consultant on a movie version.

She could start a website authorized by her with memorbilia, extras, memento items, etc., and sell ebooks there. She could use her fame to do other things, like get a job as a professor.

He also provided this link:



Kinsella doesn't exactly hit it out of the park.

His real answer, which I do respect, is that he doesn't know how it would work. Nobody does, and nobody will, until IP laws are abandoned as unenforceable. I don't know either. None of his practical suggestions really get to the core issue: if an author writes a book, he deserves to be paid by those who read it. Kinsella's answers all sound like tricks an author could use to get money for something other than selling his book to readers. But if reading the book has a value to the reader, why should the author not be compensated for providing that value? The question is how this can be accomplished without IP.

The only reasonable solution that has occurred to me so far is releasing the book in installments: publish the first few chapters for free online, and release subsequent chapters only when a certain number of paid subscriptions have been pledged. Popular authors will be able to charge more for such subscriptions than unknowns, and truly crappy writers will not persuade readers that the rest of their book is worth reading -- that may be a good thing. And if an author does not receive the number of pledges he asks for, he may choose to release the book anyway, to claim the pledges that he does receive -- that could be a good means of "price discovery."

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition, http://www.amazon.com/Most-Dangerous-Superstition-Larken-Ros...

The point being just coming

The point being just coming up with a good idea does not by itself entitle you to wealth, you have to follow through, you have to develop your idea, market it and find ways to capitalize on it by providing real value to the market.

Any schmuck can come up with a good idea, does that automatically mean we should hand him a huge check?

Any shmuck . . .

Well, writing an 1100 page novel is something more than a shmuck "coming up with a good idea" like an advertising slogan, a flash of insight, or a catchy melody. Something like a major chunk of one's life work. If you've ever written a book yourself (I have), should you ever encounter someone who proclaims his moral right to make and sell his own copies of your book without compensating you, I promise you that your first reaction will be to desire his guts for garters.

I agree that it's the author's responsibility -- not government's -- to market his own product, and figure out a way to profit from its publication without coercing others. But I think the particular area of book publication would need to change drastically in a world without IP. Since any hardcopy could be scanned, reprinted and republished within a few days, and electronic copies of e-books can be made in seconds, books will become much less profitable for the authors, unless they can figure out a new way to collect money before publication. Or rediscover an old way, perhaps, like releasing the book as a serial, giving away the first chapters and releasing later chapters only when a certain number of pre-paid subscriptions are received. Consider the way Amazon sells most books now, with their "look inside" feature, allowing viewers to read sample chapters online. Something like that is likely the future of publishing, without IP. And once any book is fully published, it enters "public domain" status, where the author cannot reasonably expect further profit from the publication. I can see the logic and even the morality of doing away with IP, but deep down it purely gravels my sense of justice. And it saddens me that an end of IP will likely mean that fewer and fewer books will be written and published at all. Who will write them, if any shmuck with an internet connection can access the work for the cost of a mouse click?

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition, http://www.amazon.com/Most-Dangerous-Superstition-Larken-Ros...


I'm kind of divided on this one. I find it curious the way some Libertarians dismiss IP out of hand. I get that an idea is immaterial, and may not fall within someone's strict understanding of property. I just think it deserves more debate and consideration given that property is at the core of libertarian theory. For example, why does the principle of homesteading not apply to IP? If your property belongs to you because you've mixed it with your labor - then why doesn't this apply to ideas? If I come up with a novel design, and mix my labor with it - either directly ( by implementing it myself ) or indirectly ( by paying someone else to implement it ) then why does it not "belong" to me? Does this only apply to the individual device, or does it apply the to principle/design of it's operation or aesthetic? I'm personally agnostic on this one, and I don't think it's a "big-deal" in the grand scheme of things. In the case of this girl's jewelery, I can't even defend it as a devil's advocate for IP. It's an example of how far out-of-hand IP can get, where the most frivolous things can be trademarked. I'd like to know what people actually think, so please don't copy and paste some article.

- Liberty and Prosperity -

So what, because this lady

So what, because this lady made silver necklaces with the state shapes, then nobody should ever be able to ever again?

She wasn't the first person to make little loops of silver into a chain designed to wear as a necklace. She's stealing!

gold = money
war = health of the state
liberty = prosperity