Something else not specified in this section are viruses. Viruses are not strictly microorganisms, and no mention is made of them, but yet they can be manufactured and used for treatments- recently even for cancer:
If viruses could be excluded from patentability since they aren't mentioned, then any research or manufacturing done would not be patentable, and therefore some companies may hesitate to invest too heavily in research.
Still, seems a little odd / slippery slope-y to me. On the one hand, I understand and, to some extent, agree with the need to protect / profit off what you've developed. On the otherhand, USPTO is pretty bad at biological patent screening and I can see a huge landrush to patent bacteria for no good reason.
(Full disclosure, I am in the process of patenting a modified natural product made by a bacteria)
It just seems like the wrong mechanism. Isn't the goal of restricting copying of your engineered organism better suited to the copyright system, rather than the patent system? Patents are for processes, right? But an organism is a thing, not a process. Isn't making an illegal copy of that thing a copyright violation?
They aren't patenting the organism per se, they're patenting the processes they've developed that make use of the organisms as the scaffold/factory. In the case I outlined previously of a yeast making a drug, you would want the patent on the cellular machinery that you've built to make the drug, which is the process.
This is pretty much the definition of how patents differ from copyright law, if I word-for-word write come up with the same work as you and I can prove that I didn't copy yours, it's not covered by copyright law.
With patents it doesn't matter that I came up with it on my own, you own the rights to the end result.
Discussing exactly how bad the temporary bad result is informs discussion of when that trade-off is worthwhile. And this is true whether or not your conclusion is that patents are never OK or only sometimes OK.
It is a poor time to discuss trade-off generic to all patents. Focusing on them shifts the discussion away from the issue at hand, and toward a political stance that people have already heard.
avar's post does the latter.
Just like in a topic about whether to vote for a specific tax levy, it's inappropriate to talk about whether property taxes as a whole should be abolished.
Making the argument that a given problem is recurrent is very constructive: consideration of the generic problem can provide arguments for prioritizing your problem as it relates to X. This is especially true when present instances of a problem affect future probability of the same problem occurring.
This is notably the case in law where jurisprudence makes laws progressively more difficult to repeal.
> That's an argument against patents existing at all.
It's not an argument for or against patents, I'm pointing out that @aroch is wrong about them "patenting the processes".
That's not true for most of these patents, they're patenting isolated organisms, compounds or genes. I.e. the end result, not the process.
What incentives we should give individuals and corporations to advance biotechnology is another matter.
Organisms and genes are machines. There's nothing new about patenting specific machines.
Could they really get a patent on "bacteria that secretes X" that would stop you from doing it in a completely different manner?
But if you insert the same gene into the same bacteria using different equipment, that's no better than making the same patented gear with a different manufacturing method.
To give an analogy, if somebody invented and patented the reciprocating piston engine, and then somebody else came along and invented a rotary engine, such as the wankel engine, the inventor of the former wouldn't have a claim against the latter because, while the result is the same (a drive shaft gets turned), the mechanism is different. Sure, it's possible that the inventor of the former could threaten the inventor of the former, as many patent trolls do, but legally they wouldn't have a leg to stand on.
Now, if the gene itself is the critical part of the 'invention', and not the organism, then taking that same gene and inserting it into a different organism still leaves you open to patent infringement. But that assumes the gene itself has been engineered, as opposed to having been found in an existing organism.
Again, I'm not sure how I feel on whether it should be patentable or not. But, at least as I understand it, their intent is protection for something they've spent millions/billions developing -- no different than the process patents we have now.
How would you feel if your body, consciousness, and everything you were was patented?
There are an awful lot of ethical and legal considerations when custom-designed intelligent organisms become possible, I'm not sure if IP is high on the list.
As much of the utility in modified organisms is that they do copy themselves without your help, it seems as though the patent system would be much better suited, because there the enforcement burden is to prevent a human from using the organism to accomplish a specific purpose.
People sometimes forget that laws are pointless if they are not enforceable.
Or worse than pointless; actively harmful.
Is this about "free trade" or about profit-maximizing and guaranteeing for some big corporations?
Very dangerous, and sounds more like "Empire – Colonies" than "Equal partners in trade"
Unbelievable, that the EU does really accept all this! Only explanation: Those politicians are already bought.
> The TPP means that America will write the rules of the road in the 21st century.
It very much sounds like they’re treating the rest of the world as colonies.
It doesn't seem to me that the intellectual property provisions of the agreement are all that important to the overall stated goals of the TPP. Yet they are so fucking regressive and antagonistic that there is some chance (I guess? Again, echo chamber...) that they will sabotage the rest of the agreement. After SOPA, etc., if it were me and I wanted to be sure that the TPP passed in enough Pacific Rim countries to make it effective, I would keep anything remotely like SOPA as far away from my precious treaty as I possibly could.
Instead, the IP portions of the agreement are basically the language that was in SOPA all over again, which pissed a whole lot of people off last time. It's really hard to take seriously the claim that the TPP is so important, when the people drafting it are including language that is pretty much guaranteed to stoke vigorous opposition, for reasons that are mostly orthogonal to their goals.
Either they know, that the other countries will follow anyway (because the politicians are (select one or multiple): incompetent, bought, blackmailed, Pro-US, incompetent, ignoring their own countries interests) -- or the things told about the importance of the treaties are not true, but it is just a vehicle to transport the antagonizing bullshit, because some big corporations want this to be installed.
In the EU (TTIP), my impression is, that at least at the high levels of politicians, the list above just must be applied. Many leading politicians are just hitting so hard to get this installed, that it seems they are mad, when I see what negatives they are ready to swallow. They let the US dictate the treaty and just don't seem to recognize, how the EU is hornswoggled.
What happens to colonies can be seen in the plenty of former colonies that still struggle to get out of poverty.
If the West is moving towards an information economy and is going to let the developing world take over manufacturing, the West wants to protect the information economy. The idea is we want to sell information for goods/services.
This is not about protecting own inventions, but about land-grabbing things that we did not invent, but nature!
The same thing, corporations try again and again. For example, once they copied cures of traditional Indian medicine, patented them in the USA and tried to forbid the free usage.
When this goes on this way, we all will soon have to pay a life-tax for having some type of DNA or bacteria in our bodies. Already, many cures are not invented, because to many patents on life building blocks make the creation to financially risky.
"In the first step by a developing country to stop multinational companies patenting traditional remedies from local plants and animals, the Indian government has effectively licensed 200,000 local treatments as "public property" free for anyone to use but no one to sell as a "brand"."
I believe that microorganisms patentability would indeed introduce a whole lot of problems for any human being. Starting with what's apparently already happening with plant patents -- see e.g. the story at:
How about not blatantly ignoring all the human misery caused by failed extreme free market experiments, such as Pinochet's Chile and 1990's Russia?
So if 1990s Russia and Pinochet's Chile are examples of extreme free market experiments, I'd take the human misery they cause over the human misery of extreme no-market experiments any day.
You're confused. They're examples of free market experiments, however the Pinochet's deaths had nothing to do with the free market and all with his political power.
If you want to see deaths caused by free market, look at e.g. homeless people who freeze on the street during winter.
Anyway, I don't think anyone excuses dictatorships in this thread.
What do you mean?
IIRC, this is not true. It's a contributor, certainly, but Russian life expectancy is substantially lower than other nations with similar alcohol consumption.
However, that doesn't say anything about validity of ideas of free market or communism. What does say a lot though is that some free market proponents have the need to advocate Pinochet.
That's not what ctlby said. Nor is it a reasonable interpretation of his/her words.
In other words, if someone is killing for individual reasons, he is not following any philosophy, because he doesn't need any; he's just crazy or psychopath. Killing for philosophical reasons always happens to protect some social order (albeit sometimes fictional).
If you don't agree, there is a simple solution. Just provide an example of philosophy that causes killing of people and is not in fact collectivist (by any definition you choose, it doesn't matter very much, and that's why I was able to do the bold claim I did).
Or to put it even simpler, it's contradictory to kill another human to fulfil any philosophy of individual freedom.
Hitler killed because he wanted to protect Germans from Jews, Pinochet killed because communists were danger to his social order, and so on. Even Winston Smith from 1984 was willing to kill in order to replace the social system (which is the passage in the book I really like, because it's one of the places that makes it actually morally ambiguous, just like real world).
Now you argue that killing another human being for philosophical reasons is always collectivist according to your [asgard1024's] definition. That does nothing whatsoever to make the quoted statement true.
[Edit: For that matter, I see nowhere where ctlby gave his/her definition of "collectivist", nor where he/she assented to yours definition.]
To your point in this post:
You are kind of arguing a tautology. If someone expresses a moral philosophy (no matter how twisted), but they are the only one who believes it or adheres to it, they're collectivist, because they're trying to motivate other people to follow their code. But if someone doesn't express their reasons as a moral philosophy, "he's just crazy or a psychopath". You dismiss any possibility that such a person is following an inexpressed philosophy. In fact, you have pretty much defined out the possibility of there even being such a thing. From that starting point, you argue that your position is correct, but in fact it was contained in your starting assumptions, so your argument is of no value.
What I said is true of (almost) any definition of "collectivist", including ctlby's.
> You dismiss any possibility that such a person is following an inexpressed philosophy.
Yes, because any inexpressed philosophies were not subject of the discussion; we can't assign killings due to inexpressed philosophies to any philosophy, since we don't know which one.
I mean, show me one non-collectivist philosophy according to which is OK to kill human (except in unavoidable self-defense). There is no such thing - all of them are collectivist.
No, your definition of collectivist is so expansive, everything fits. My reply is trying to communicate something to you, therefore my reply is collectivist (or else I don't understand your definition). But presuming I do understand, I reject your definition as being so broad as to be meaningless.
> I mean, show me one non-collectivist philosophy according to which is OK to kill human (except in unavoidable self-defense). There is no such thing - all of them are collectivist.
The Marquis de Sade had a philosophy. Since there is no God, whatever is, is right. And, hey, nature made man stronger than woman. Therefore man has the right to do to woman whatever he wants. I can't find any sane way to describe that philosophy as "collectivist", but de Sade lived out his philosophy to the extent of torturing women. (To my knowledge, he did not actually kill any, but certainly he was free to do so, according to his philosophy.)
Now, I will agree with you that collectivist philosophies (conventionally defined) are much more likely to say that it is OK to kill an individual, because those philosophies start from the group being important, and the individual not. (That's kind of the definition of collective.) From that starting point, it's really hard to find a way to stop short of "It's OK to kill an individual if it's for the good of the group."
Individualistic (as opposed to ethical or utilitarian) hedonism: if it brings the holder of that philosophy net pleasure to do a thing, it is right to do it.
Pretty much the most anti-collectivist philosophy possible.
I would like to see an example that would be useful to classify social systems, as ctlby attempted to do. But I don't see it. Once you put "social system" into it, killing happens for collectivist reason.
Life is not black and white. The hardline communists were awful. That doesn't mean that hardline capitalists can't also be awful. Maybe they're less awful, in a "rather be kicked in the face than shot in the head" kind of way, but that's not a positive recommendation.
This is not a rational historical comparison (if such a thing can really exist), these are just random numbers shouted in a pub argument, "My guy killed less people than your guy!"...
Chile and the Chicago Boys is a bit disingenuous to regard as outright failure, it's a controversial subject. Keep in mind that the Chicago School are a unique economic position, but they've been oversimplified to "free market" in common discourse.
If you want sources, just scan Brad Delong's blog; there's a decent chance he's making this point at any given time. There was a wonderful example I can't take time time to dig up right now in which an (Chicago-aligned) economist published a paper with outright deceptive priors and when confronted, explained that his goal was to promote an argument, and it was the reader's problem to make counter arguments. You can call that a lot of things, but academic inquiry isn't one of them.
Mariana Mazzucato's work on The Entrepreneurial State makes frequent appearances in these parts, typically in the shape of references to internet startups not really being innovative, because the internet/GPS/touch screens/Siri have roots in government research programs.
All the time: very often advocates of government action tend to predict an association between specific government actions and specific results, rather than ascribing bad results to "government" generally and good results to "the market", drawing both bad and good results from scenarios where government regulation shapes the market; while anti-government advocates like to pretend that there is a symmetry between their non-specific advocacy against government and some opposing advocacy for government, that's not actually the case.
I have literally never seen that kind of analysis of a government program, still less a group of them. But it's essential, so that we can tell whether the predictions of what the next program will do have any basis in reality.
I know this was a typo and you meant "free market", but it was a hilarious typo.
The notion of blaming the ills of 1991-1999 on free markets is absurd. Were free markets going to magically turn the nation of Stalin right around into a bastion of prosperity? Impossible.
You know what turned Russia's condition around? A debased US dollar and the high oil prices it caused. It wasn't Putin or central planning.
And as for Pinochet: a 17 year, violent military dictatorship in a free market. If that's your political system, what you inherently cannot have is a free market. The two are mutually exclusive.
"Government-controlled banks and the Indian public holding a 49.1 percent stake."
The government and public quite literally owned half of Union Carbide company at the time of the disaster. Fault can't really get more directly placed than that.
The hopes of private industry are that an entirely private corporation, in order to protect its brand's value, needs to avoid this sort of thing. Add government funding to the mix, and everything is up in the air. Lockheed's F-35 project is another example of a disaster, but of the financial sort instead. If funded by another private company, rather than the government, this project would have been shut down and Lockheed would have already been sued into bankruptcy. Instead, Lockheed continues to be paid billions, while their treasonous corporation holds our national security hostage.
Note: All content in this comment is my opinion only.
It's 2015, no-one believes this anymore.
c'mon... your glasses are so rosy it's not even funny.