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Rent-seeking


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#1 stocks

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 04:25 AM

Rent-seeking involves seeking to increase one's share of existing wealth without creating new wealth.

Rent-seeking is an attempt to obtain economic rent (i.e., the portion of income paid to a factor of production in excess of that which is needed to keep it employed in its current use) by manipulating the social or political environment in which economic activities occur, rather than by creating new wealth.

Rent-seeking implies extraction of uncompensated value from others without making any contribution to productivity.

A famous example of rent-seeking is the limiting of access to lucrative occupations, as by medieval guilds or modern state certifications and licensures. Taxi licensing is a commonly-referenced example of rent-seeking.


https://en.wikipedia...ki/Rent-seeking

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#2 stocks

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 04:50 AM

Today, copyrights can easily last for more than a century.

In America's original copyright system, protection only lasted for 28 years. By the mid-20th century, Congress had doubled the maximum term to 56 years.

Then, in 1976, Congress overhauled the copyright system. Instead of fixed terms with a maximum of 56 years of protection, individual authors were granted protection for their life plus an additional 50 years, an approach that had become the norm in Europe.

For works authored by corporations—Hollywood blockbusters, for example—copyright terms were extended to 75 years.


William Faulkner, George Gershwin and Walt Disney died decades earlier. Granting longer copyright terms for their existing works couldn't cause them to produce any more masterpieces.

"The only reason to extend the term is to give private benefits to companies like Disney or Time Warner that have valuable properties like Mickey Mouse or famous films."

There are more printed books available from the 1880s than the 1980s. When books fall into the public domain, as works from the 1880s have, anyone is free to re-publish them. In contrast, books from the 1980s are still in copyright, so only their original copyright holder can give permission to distribute them.

The 1976 and 1998 copyright extensions have deprived a generation of readers of easy access to books from the 1920s, 1930s, 1940s and 1950s.


https://www.washingt...ey-do-it-again/

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#3 stocks

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 10:16 AM

The Predators Behind the TPP

Rent seekers and financial firms are the top predators, and the TPP will massively expand their hunting territory and give them fierce fangs in the bargain.

Attracted by an opportunity to make money without production, corporations began to to claim the rights of all manner of artistic merchandise after paying off needy creators, or they claimed the right to something that had theretofore been free, like the extraction of something with medicinal properties from plants and trees used in indigenous forms of medicine.

Property can be had everywhere: not only of music and films that have earned any original investments many times over, but also Indian Ayurvedic medicine formulas, images of temple paintings in South-East Asia – you name it, we are only at the beginning of this.

Public gullibility under neoliberal regimes can be measured by the ease with which the notion of ‘piracy’ has become widely accepted,

The rules demanded by the United States will create conditions for an even greater American popular culture hegemony. Local producers of popular culture products are likely to find themselves pressed to the margins in their own countries, and bankrupted by very costly litigation in which the Americans are masters. An army of lawyers may be expected to become a parasitical growth on the culture of the participating countries, with a new category of ambulance chasers inspired by the new industry of American lawyers who, on their own, ferret out possible cases of copyright infringement by unsuspecting parties, and then threaten those people with litigation unless they pay a settlement fee.

The expected Intellectual Property stipulations of the TPP related to medicine have drawn much attention, as these will enlarge the oligopoly power of Pharmaceutical companies. Global public health is likely to suffer from this, because from what is already known the new rules will lengthen the period before the use of generic drugs is permitted; and these are the only affordable medicine for patients in poorer countries.



http://www.unz.com/a...behind-the-tpp/

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#4 stocks

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Posted 02 December 2015 - 07:30 AM

How did Carlos Slim become a billionaire?

 

Privatization

 

In Mexico, when they told it to be more “efficient” and privatize its telephone monopoly, the government sold it to Carlos Slim, who became one of the richest people in the world by making Mexico’s phones among the highest priced in the world. The government provided an opportunity for price gouging.

 

Similar high-priced privatized phone systems plague the neoliberalized post-Soviet economies. Classical economists viewed this as a kind of theft. The French novelist Balzac wrote about this more clearly than most economists when he said that every family fortune originates in a great theft. He added that this not only was undiscovered, but has come taken for granted so naturally that it just doesn’t matter.

If you look at the Forbes 100 or 500 lists of each nation’s richest people, most made their fortunes through insider dealing to obtain land, mineral rights or monopolies. If you look at American history, early real estate fortunes were made by insiders bribing the British Colonial governors. The railroad barrens bribed Congressmen and other public officials to let them privatize the railroads and rip off the country. Frank Norris’s The Octopus is a great novel about this, and many Hollywood movies describe the kind of real estate and banking rip-offs that made America what it is. The nation’s power elite basically begun as robber barons, as they did in England, France and other countries.

 

 

http://www.unz.com/m...-body-economic/


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#5 stocks

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Posted 08 December 2015 - 04:49 PM

Patent trolls file frivolous lawsuits just to fish for out-of-court settlements.

 

The median legal cost for most major patent cases is $5 million–a cost too large even for some major corporations. And that attitude is patent trolls bread and butter; they bank on the fact that the vast majority of their victims will give in to their demand payments.

 

 

Trolls and their zealous trial lawyers shop around for the easiest, most patent-friendly courts, since there are essentially no limits on where these cases can be filed. They’ve found a safe haven in the Eastern District of Texas Court.

 

This single federal court district—located in a rural, remote part of the county without a vibrant technology sector—accounts for 44 percent of patent lawsuits filed thus far this year. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce ranked the county as one with the “least fair and reasonable litigation environment” and has been known to offer quick trials, award large damages and is particularly favorable to trolls.

 

In fact, this abuse is driving an entire industry there, with an influx of hotels and legal service businesses. The city of Marshall, Texas, attributes 90 percent of their business to that drummed up by patent lawsuits.

 

 

 

http://www.breitbart...e-american-law/

 

 


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#6 stocks

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Posted 09 December 2015 - 07:18 AM

Nobody Cares About Antitrust Anymore

 

Dow Chemical, DuPont Said to Be in Late-Stage Merger Talks

 

Now they won'tcompete with each other, either for customers or employees.

Life is good.

The government still pays some attention to anti-competitive mergers like these, but the public sure doesn’t.

 

http://www.unz.com/i...itrust-anymore/

 


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#7 stocks

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Posted 16 January 2017 - 08:22 AM

Today, copyrights can easily last for more than a century.

In America's original copyright system, protection only lasted for 28 years. By the mid-20th century, Congress had doubled the maximum term to 56 years.
 

 

Law Firm Indicted In Nationwide Copyright Scheme

 

  They would obtain copyrights to pornographic movies and upload those movies to file-sharing websites to lure people to download the movies.  Then they would swoop in and hit people with demands for payments.

 

We have often discussed the abusive expansion of copyright and trademark laws. This includes common phrases, symbols, and images being claimed as private property. (here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here). 

 

 

    This included a New York artist claiming that he holds the trademark to symbol π. We are seeing these claims multiply because Congress has repeatedly caved into a powerful lobby in Washington expanding these protections and has done nothing to rein in their copyright and trademarks firms.

 

We have previously discussed how President Obama has repeatedly yielded to the “copyright hawks” who have steadily increased the penalties for copyright and trademark violations, including criminal penalties. Despite the abuse of average citizens by thuggish law firms and prosecutors, the Obama Administration continues to support draconian measures against citizens. The result is that firms may routinely send out these thuggish threats and claim ownership to such things as the skyline of New York city. It is small business and average people who are being victimized because they do not have any comparable lobby in Congress.

 

 

These lawyers are brutish thugs who showed as little human decency as they did legal ethics. However, do not fool yourself. There are firms around the country who are feeding off average Americans forced under their heel by laws passed by Congress.

 

 

https://jonathanturl...pyright-scheme/


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