[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: FSF : lackeys of their corporate masters

From: Bernd Jendrissek
Subject: Re: FSF : lackeys of their corporate masters
Date: Thu, 6 May 2004 06:54:45 +0000 (UTC)
User-agent: tin/1.7.1-20030918 ("Berneray") (UNIX) (Linux/2.4.18 (i686))

Hash: SHA1

In article <> Russ Allbery
<> wrote:
>Snuffelluffogus <> writes:

>>> So people don't have a right to choose what to do with their work, but
>>> they do have a right to a "fair living"?  Fair to whom? 
>> Setting the price of their labor at zero is unethical.
>I set the price of much of my labor at zero.  It would be a direct assault
>on my freedom to prevent me from doing so.  That would be akin to
>outlawing charity, an action that I believe is self-evidently evil.

What action, charity or outlawing it?

BTW I don't particularly like charitable giving (when done by myself):
all it really accomplishes, in many cases, is to provide a public good
at my personal expense.  I take it as axiomatic that I'm a good person
(who doesn't?), so by charitable giving I'd be harming a good person
(fewer resources to allocate to making a better world), and therefore
acting unethically.

Twisted, I know, and not very well thought through, but I hope it makes
the point that it's not as simple as "charitable giving" == "good".

In that sense, Snuffelluffogus's claim
>> Setting the price of their labor at zero is unethical.
needs argument to dismiss - we can't just appeal to obviousness.

Maybe the resolution is that the marginal cost of some labour *is* zero,
or closer to it than the currently prevailing non-market price?  I say
non-market because the price is set as much by monopolies (set up by
copyright, patents and trademarks) as it is by competition (multiple
providers of the same service).

That's why I think, in the long run, it's not enough to accept a status
quo of free software coexisting with proprietary software: proprietary
software exercises greater moral/ethical latitude, and will always be a
better vehicle for making profit.  We need to change the *rules* of the
game, not just the score.

>>> News flash:  In a free society, people are allowed to do things that
>>> other people consider unethical.
>> News flash; The USA is not a free society. It is ruled by corporations,
>> which are the only "citizens" that matter.  That is why we have DCMA, a
>> patent office gone wild, and scores of other ugly problems including
>> your friend Bush.

You have a very valid point here, Snuffelluffogus, in that in the US,
corporations really *are* citizens.  The only thing they can't do is
vote.  That whole corporate personhood thing is a corruption of what
your "founding fathers" wanted for the country they founded.

>Corporate  constitutional  rights  effectively  invert  the
>relationship  between  the  government  and the corporations.
>Recognized as persons, corporations lose much of their status as
>subjects of the government. Although artificial creations of  their
>owners  and  the  governments,  as legal persons they have a degree of
>immunity to government supervision. U.S.  corporations are endowed with
>the court-recognized right to influence both elections and the
>law-making process.

The big problem with giving corporations too many rights is that it's
difficult to impose responsibilities on them.  After all, you can't
exactly put a corporation in jail, can you?  <images of a jailhouse full
of golden arches>

>So you advocate making it worse by removing even more freedoms?  Hasn't
>that been tried before?

Should people be free to sell themselves as slaves?

>Evidence is mounting for "confused Marxist," I think.

Yes.  And 14 years of age. It has a very black-and-white view of things,
makes no allowance for the vast complexity of the real world.
Everything can be crystallized into "good workers" and "evil

- -- (f1084a555d2098411cff4cefd41d2e2a1c85d18c)
Seen in comp.lang.c:
> cody wrote:
>> The problem is that i believe that my assertions are correct.
> Yes, that is a problem.
Version: GnuPG v1.0.4 (GNU/Linux)
Comment: For info see


reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]