Patent Systems Not an Effective Incentive

Ha!.. I don't have a problem with the labeling if it's apt. In fact Michael - I remember calling one of your friends a fascist years ago at a dinner function. He was a bit put out at first but ended up admitting he was one.

Anyway, I don't agree with your socialist label in this context. First of all, I have already stated that I am not opposed to killing off the patent system, but I'm not convinced it will be as glorious as some have made it out to be. (for reasons based on diminishing investment, not the amount of innovation)

Secondly, I don't think you or Ron have yet made a convincing argument that ideas are less worthy of property status than tangible goods. This seems very arbitrary to me, so maybe we should toss out ALL property rights and then see what evolves from that. (you would still own your own body I guess).

To further this point - we are now in an interesting era in regards to tangible vs. intangible with the emergence of virtual reality. In virtual worlds, everything is essentially intangible, is easily replicated, etc. In fact, you can't really even nail down a virtual room into electrons or anything we know of as physical. For instance, last week a virtual bank was hacked and 'billions' stolen essentially wiping out all parties after a run on the bank. If they prosecute the hacker, should he be prosecuted for theft or just fraud? He stole items of value but it's not clear whether virtual money is more tangible than a virtual printing press - to me or the courts.

Also, the whole VR situation brings out age old questions about our own reality- what is real, is it real only once perceived, etc. So being philosophical I have trouble distinguishing between an apple and a concept in absolute terms. Creationists may have less of an issue with this I suppose.

All good stuff though. I'll try and read Tucker's writings this week. I like the Kinsella doc Starchild sent out though. I guess I'm leaning toward the Randian viewpoint based on his analysis. By the way, would you agree with him then that David Friedman is also an IP socialist?