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Against Monopoly

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Monopoly corrupts. Absolute monopoly corrupts absolutely.





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Patents violate the consitution in discouraging innovation

Alex Tabarrok who blogs at Marginal Revolution has suddenly turned his attention to patents and their pernicious extension (or perhaps I have only just become aware of his interest) link here. He has written an e-book and cites a number of favorable reviews. He argues that patents have not only failed to encourage innovation but have instead slowed it down based on data over a period of years and citing the legal costs of patent suits decreasing the returns from innovation.

He returns to patents in a later blog where he comes down hard on one example: the extension of protection for the development of a new medical procedure link here. His example of choice has been much in the IP news recently as the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the granting of a patent on a method of determining how much of a medicine long since out of the reach of its original patent should be adjusted, depending on the patient's tests. He then does a riff on the general expansion of patent protection to such new fields as software.

Worth reading and thinking about.


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