Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Property Rights

When you reflect upon property rights, do you locate them in natural law, common law or statutory law?

And then once you locate such rights in a legal theory, can you reconcile your view of property rights with that theory?

It is probably not possible.  If not, then they are to that degree whimsical, and if whimsical, not very important.

Feel free to forward this by email to three of your friends.


Anonymous said...


This patent lawyer says that patents are natural rights.

John Wiley Spiers said...

I know patent lawyers that would be perplexed to hear it... read Patry for better argument... it is the first book listed there on the left...

Anonymous said...

The above lawyer, Dale Halling, also asserts that patents are not a monopoly - I believe he is among a minority among patent layers that believe this:


Another big misconception about patents and innovation which helps to legitimize IPR in the minds among pro-IPR people I suppose: Belief in the lone (or sole) inventor:




(I'm not defending IPR. I believe that IPR should be abolished too.)

John Wiley Spiers said...

The surprising thing for me when I began to study IPR, is how many patent attorneys believe the system wrong, and how universally weak the pro-IPR arguments are, and how profound the anti-IPR arguments are... What is known in the trenches, IPR is destructive, is supported in theory. But there will always be monopoly defenders and rent-seekers.

Anonymous said...

I believe that entrepreneurs and businesses are forced to participate in the IPR system. They need to get defensive patents on their own products, so that others don't do it and sue them. Patents have been weaponized and are actively incorporated into business strategies to be a menace to competitors. A patent thicket can scare off competitors from working on a specific product or in a whole industry altogether. IPR is truly a scourge on American business, but it's great if you're a rent-seeking patent lawyer though.

If you write and publish a book, you get a copyright on it automatically whether you want it or not - but it's not as strong as if you actually registered the work at the Copyright Office. People, businesses, and libraries, will treat the work as having been copyrighted due to fear of legal issues and possible copyright infringement. Copyright law still affects the author, even though they may not have filed a copyright registration at the Copyright office. I think that authors can legally dedicate their work to the "public domain," and let anybody work with it or copy it, but I'm not sure of the procedure.