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Re: [OT] The record industry, RIAA and US law

On Thu, 10 May 2007 10:40:55 +0200
Johannes Wiedersich <johannes@physik.blm.tu-muenchen.de> wrote:

> Hash: SHA1
> Celejar wrote:
> > On Tue, 08 May 2007 22:07:52 +0200
> > Joe Hart <j.hart@orange.nl> wrote:
> > 
> >> Hash: SHA1
> >>
> >> Curt Howland wrote:
> > [snip]
> > 
> >>> The Democrats have held a majority in Congress for 182 days. I stopped 
> >>> holding my breath a long time ago.
> >>>
> >>> It doesn't take being an anarchist to know that there isn't any 
> >>> difference between "Republican" and "Democrat". It's all just 
> >>> carefully crafted false ideologies designed to "divide and conquer".
> >>>
> >>> I wouldn't trust any professional politician to change my tire without 
> >>> trying to steal the lug nuts, regardless of party or nationality.
> >>>
> >>> Daniel Webster - "In every generation, there are those who want to 
> >>> rule well - but they mean to rule. They promise to be good masters - 
> >>> but they mean to be masters."
> >>>
> >>> Why is the RIAA still able to get away with their fear tactics? 
> >>> Because they know who to bribe. Centralized power creates a "target 
> >>> of opportunity" for corruption. Europe is learning this the hard way 
> >>> now, too.
> >>>
> >> Yes, I agree with you.  One of the reasons I am no longer in the United
> >> States, although it isn't the main reason.  I live in a country that
> >> still maintains some bit of freedom, although that is eroding thanks to
> >> the EU.  I voted no to the EU Constitution, as did the majority of the
> I am talking about Germany, but for what I say, there is not much
> difference between Germany and the Netherlands. On details, I would say
> that the Netherlands are more liberal than Germany.
> > I don't know much about the Netherlands' laws, but you are stating that
> > there's substantially more freedom there than in the USA. Can you give
> > examples? 
> Lots.
> > Whose gun control laws are stricter? 
> Europe's. But despite all the big claims, 'guns to everyone' has nothing
> to do with freedom. It gives the freedom to kill others to people, but
> it is far better not to give that freedom and have less people killed,
> like in Germany/EU. The people who get killed due to 'too many guns
> around' loose all their freedom and more.

You concede that we are freer WRT guns, but you argue that in a greater
sense you're freer, since the victims stay alive. But by that sort of
sophistry, you can call lots of things freedom; the 'McCarthyism' that
Joe and Curt detest is actually 'freedom', since would-be victims of
the would-be terrorists remain alive and free. The point is that we
measure freedom by what a law-abiding citizen may legally do, and by
that straightforward definition, we're freer than you WRT firearms.

> Even the police and military have less 'freedom' to use guns in Germany
> as compared to the US. Again that's a good thing.

Even if we concede that it's a good thing, that doesn't equal freedom.
It's just that sometimes a curtailment of freedom is good.

> > Which country has
> > stronger protections for freedom of speech? 
> Arguably, Germany. The only exception to this rule is that it is illegal
> in Germany to tell lies about the Nazis. It is also illegal to tell
> offending lies about other people. But this is actually protects the
> freedom of others.

Can I tell offending *truths* or expres offending opinions about
others? Can I say "I hate Jews / Arabs / Asians / blacks / homosexuals
and I think that they should be stripped of their civil rights and
incarcerated"? Again, even if one believes that it's right to prohibit
such things (and I don't concede the point) it's incorrect to call that

How is selling Nazi memorabilia and expressing fondness for them
telling lies about them? Fallaci had trouble for writing thing like
"the sons of Allah breed like rats". Was she accused of falsehood, or
of mere offensiveness?

> Also, no Western-German or unified German government after WWII has ever
> carried people to offshore islands, denying any rights for legal counsel
> or legal defence. As said above, government, police, military have less
> powers in Germany to take freedom away from people.
> > As I said, I don't know
> > much about the Netherlands' legal climate, but I'm surprised to hear
> > that it's a much freer country. I have heard that they're more tolerant
> > WRT moral issues, such as euthanasia, drugs and prostitution. Is that
> > what you mean? What about economic freedom? One way or another, I'm
> > genuinely curious to see a comparison of the two countries' respective
> > freedoms.
> What do you mean by economic freedom? If you are talking about the
> ability of companies to sack people in order to save their salary, then
> the US is indeed more liberal.

Yes, the ability to hire and fire at will is called freedom of
contract. Why should the government tell consenting adults what sorts
of economic arrangements they can make among themselves :). And once
again, even if you believe that government should regulate such things
(and I do agree with some regulation of economic activity), it's still
a curtailment of freedom.

> If you are talking about the freedom to copy a CD you bought to a
> cassette in order to play it on your 10 year old car's stereo that won't
> play CDs, than Germany has more freedom. Many of the EULA clauses
> limiting your rights are void in Germany. (Of course that implies that
> companies have less freedom to hassle their customers).
> If you are talking about the possibility of using 'one-click' buttons on
> your web site without fear of patent infringement, then Europe has more
> freedom.

You have completely failed to show that Germany is freer than the US.
You have shown that some things are freer there, but many are freer
here. You just insist on denying that any of our freedoms are really
> Johannes

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