Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Getting Into Kinsella's Head

Stephan Kinsella is out with another blast in regard to the upcoming Wenzel-Kinsella IP debate.

I frankly don't understand all this pre-debate trash talk. I must be getting into Kinsella's head.

In this latest outburst from Kinsella, he attempts to defend his calling me a clown:
As for saying “what a clown”—as any functioning modern English speaker will know, this is an informal way of scoffing at the implicit argument he seemed to be making: that my predictions about the Ronpaul.com dispute have some kind of bearing on the IP debate we are allegedly going to have. 
Again, as I pointed out at the time, there is nothing in the post Kinsella is referring to that tied his prediction about the RonPaul.com dispute into our IP debate. NONE. Kinsella is just reading something into the comment that isn't there. This was my response to Kinsella at the time:
 You are reading much too much into the post. I had no intention of linking your lawyerly skills and your skill on IP theory. I have no understanding of your skills as a lawyer. As you know, I have questions about your views on IP theory. 
I merely presented the post as a tiny bit of human drama. Nothing more. You stepped up and gave your opinion on the likely outcome of Ron Paul's suit, if it goes to court. I just found it interesting. No linkage to your IP theory, that is an incorrect jump on your part. Nothing in my post indicates I am attempting to do that.
Anyone can go back to the original post and read for himself, I do not in anyway suggest that Kinsella's handicapping of a RonPaul.com  legal decision has anything to do with his views on IP. In fact, I make clear in the first and second sentences of the post that there is a distinction between the IP debate and the legal opinions in decisions.
 I have a major philosophical disagreement with Stephan Kinsella over his views on IP, which we will debate in early April. However, I am not an IP attorney and hold no strong opinions on how current IP law is interpreted by various legal and other ruling bodies.
Thus, Kinsella just misunderstood the post completely. I wasn't implying anything, in fact, right from the start, I separated the two.

He then makes this odd statement:
[...]he has delayed the debate already what seems to me to be an inordinate time. 
He invited me to debate on January 26th, I immediately responded:
What does your schedule look like for a date. February is very tight,  but
March is pretty open for me, except for the period I am going to be at Mises
for the Austrian Economics Research Conference 2013
On January 30th, I wrote:
 As for a date, unfortunately, the more and more I look at my schedule,
it is going to have to be April. I am heading to the East Coast a
couple of weeks before AERC and I am jamming in as many meetings as
possible. I could squeeze our discussion in at some point, but I
really want to be fresh for the discussion, which means April,
especially since Chris Rossini  is, in addition, double booking me for
my regular Sunday show, because he will be heading to Florida for
And we booked April 1. It simply, turned out that I tried to book a few things in March before booking the debate with Kinsella and I realized there were many more people I needed to see on the East Coast, in New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. (In addition to the lecture at the Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama). I am meeting venture capital people in NYC. Chris Rossini outside Philly, a television producer in DC, people on the Hill, K Street people and assorted others. It's a very tight schedule. So what I initially planned to be a one week trip on the East Coast is turning into a three week trip and I consider this debate important. I wanted to have plenty of time to re-read Kinsella's Anti-Intellectual Property book and some of his other papers. As anyone knows, travelling for business can be very hectic. I just wanted to give myself enough quiet time to read Kinsella's stuff and even more quiet time to think about how I want to juxtapose my view against Kinsella's. It is simply bizarre for Kinsella to read anything else into it. Indeed, I thought I was pretty clear to him. I repeat what I wrote to him:
 I am heading to the East Coast a couple of weeks before AERC and I am jamming in as many meetings as possible.I could squeeze our discussion in at some point, but I really want to be fresh for the discussion, which means April, especially since Chris Rossini  is, in addition, double booking me for my regular Sunday show, because he will be heading to Florida for vacation.
So why Kinsella wants to read more into this is beyond my understanding. It appears clownish (taken in the Kinsella sense of the term, of course).

And then we have this from Kinsella:
Who really believes Wenzel has a book coming out on IP? Of course he does not.
As anyone following the posts at EPJ knows, I have been thinking about IP and have expressed views that are different than those held by Kinsella and others. Kinsella in his head may not think this will lead to a book, but he has nothing to ground it on. There is a book coming. Kinsella is as wrong about this as he is about IP, as he was when he predicted I wouldn't debate him. I don't know how else to put this, but Kinsella has a lot of theories rattling around in his head that will be proved wrong:

Starting with this one:
What a clown. Antoher prediciton: he will not debate me. He will find a way ot [sic] weasel out of it, like a worm.
To be followed by this one:
Who really believes Wenzel has a book coming out on IP? Of course he does not.
And, of course, he will be wrong with this also:
  I have no reason to believe Wenzel will come out with any systematic case for IP
And, LOL, why the hell is Kinsella so worried about my "legions of fans"?:
The bottom line is Wenzel is wrong on IP, and even his legions of fans mostly realize this
To paraphrase Ayn Rand, I'm not writing for "my legions of fans," I am writing for myself.

As I explained during my recent interview at Daily Bell, I structured my life a long time ago so I could think independently and write independently, that is what I am doing.

Kinsella is as wrong about this as the other points I have outlined above. Bringing up my "legions of fans" is a very odd Ellsworth Toohey-like thing to for Kinsella to be doing.


  1. I hear what I want to hear. And then I often project my psychological shortcomings onto others. As do many of us.

  2. I had a lengthy discussion today on his facebook page about these things, and when he finally popped into the discussion, he immediately declared two of the posters (including myself) to be "incoherent" and that he is a "very important man with limited time". (Though I saw on his facebook feed (we are friends) that he was posting other links and replying to them)

    I supplied the definition of a "product" and suddenly the dialogue stopped. I wasn't taking sides between you two, just wanted to know "what is what", as IP is very important to my young business.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. when you say 'IP is very important to my young business', what you really mean is 'a government enforced monopoly that gives you the power to shutdown your competition and/or steal from them are very important to your young business'

    Youre so free market, johnny ringo.

    Pure austrian economics.

    1. If IP is important to your business it means that there's little actual market demand for what you produce.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. I can't take the whole day to get into the same debate I got into on his page. If you can view it, here it is:

    1. Cat fights, interesting idea Johnny. Where in Indiana? Best of luck with your venture.

    2. Thanks Mic! Lafayette. Not catfights so much, as it is real female wrestling, with a storyline, but the key is that our fans, nor us, know where the story will go due to the outcomes not being scripted.

  6. "I frankly don't understand all this pre-debate trash talk. I must be getting into Kinsella's head."

    No, the trash talking from anti-IP advocates is due to a complete disrespect for fake libertarian statist thugs masquerading as libertarians (pro-IP libertarians), who tend to spew the nonsense that anti-IP advocates are some sort of parasitical class of criminals who are violating other people's property rights.

    It's because anti-IP advocates have refuted the pro-IP excuses a million times over, and yet those pro-IP advocates calling themselves libertarians STILL continue to spew the same fallacies again and again as if they haven't been refuted a million times over.

    Claiming that one can own an idea and back that ownership up with force, is the same thing as claiming one can own the physical orientation of other people's brains, other people's material property, and that violence is justified against others merely by virtue of their brain orientations and their material property. No pro-IP advocate has even come close to refuting this basic point, let alone the myriad of other more detailed arguments that show anti-IP is the only ethic consistent with private property libertarian principles.

    Virtually every pro-IP claim boils down to a claim that one has a right to profit, a right to control other people's brains and material property, and other rights that are not rights at all, but privileges granted by other private property owners on a contingent basis.

    Pro-IP advocates always always always get their hats handed to them in every debate I have ever seen with anti-IP advocates. Yet the incredible thing is that some people calling themselves libertarians still believe they have these rights they don't actually have as libertarians.

    1. Hi there.

      In my case, I believe that video is a product, not an idea.

      As for this:

      Claiming that one can own an idea and back that ownership up with force, is the same thing as claiming one can own the physical orientation of other people's brains, other people's material property, and that violence is justified against others merely by virtue of their brain orientations and their material property. No pro-IP advocate has even come close to refuting this basic point, let alone the myriad of other more detailed arguments that show anti-IP is the only ethic consistent with private property libertarian principles.


      No "pro-IP" advocate would debate on such silly grounds. Claim the physical orientation of other people's brains?

      Again, I think most libertarians agree that "ideas" are for the taking.

      "Products", such as online video, music, books, we deem as "leased" property in a sense. And, I don't think any Pro-IP advocates (of which I'm still in neither camp as I'm still trying to figure all of this out) advocate violence against others.

      I think what they ask for is......."what is the recourse if someone steals, re-distributes, or profits off materials that they busted their ass to produce?

      Please answer that Mr. Anti-IP. Without the insults if you can handle it.

    2. Dude, the pre debate trash talk had nothing to do with the arguments for or against IP at all. they had to do with whether wenzel was writing a book and whether he's delaying the debate and other tidbits like that. That has nothing to do with the actual argument at hand. I'm actually on Kinsella's side, but this trash talk is ridiculous. just wait until the debate and then make your case against wenzel's position.

    3. I just want to throw this out there as a possible scenario.

      Imagine an ancap world with three major protection agencies. All three agencies offer copyright registration for their clients and provide an enforcement service to which a client can subscribe to go after plagiarists of copyrighted works. Any client, as part of a protection subscription, signs a contract that includes a clause that if they plagiarize a registered copyrighted work, they are liable. May be this clause evolved out a demand from their customers, because the majority of the population believes that plagiarism is wrong.

      Now assume the three protection agencies also have agreements with each other. The majority of the population subscribes to one of these three protection agencies and thus can be liable for plagiarism. Thus, the majority of the population can be held liable. There will be a minority of the population that will, of course, not be liable, such as anyone that is not a customer of the three major providers. This is comparable to the current situations, where a minority of the population violates copyright.

      I keep saying that we just don't know how these kinds of issues would be handled in an ancap world. But I maintain that the private law would reflect the sentiments of the majority of the population, and if the majority of the population believes that a plagiarist should be liable, the law will probably evolve to reflect that.

    4. @Johnny Ringo

      " think what they ask for is......."what is the recourse if someone steals, re-distributes, or profits off materials that they busted their ass to produce?"

      That you busted your ass is completely irrelevant to whether you have a property right and thus whether you can make a claim of theft.

      You could steal someone's block of marble, bust your ass to produce an amazing statue which is an original work of art, and yet you still don't own the statue because you stole the marble. In fact, you are a thief, or a least a vandal (if you don't move the marble from their land). Neither the amount of effort you put in, nor the "original" idea you had, count for anything in deciding who owns the marble (which has been configured into the shape of a statue).

      A lot of the pro-ip arguments seem to rest on this kind of flaw. The idea that effort is somehow a determining factor. This also involves a variant (of sorts) of the labor theory of value. The idea that the amount of work you put in has something to do with the value of a thing. This is completely wrong. Value is an opinion, subjectively held by each individual. It is true that YOU may value something more if you work hard, but it doesn't follow at all that other people value something based on how hard you work.

      A part of this false thinking is also the attitude that working hard entitles one to compensation. But as we see with the stolen/defaced marble situation, your hard work has no bearing on what you're entitled to. No one would say that you didn't work hard to shape the marble. But you didn't own the marble, so your amount of effort and/or creativity matter for nothing in deciding what you're owed (or in this case, what you owe since you're actually a thief).

      In the case of your video: If your video is on a CD/DVD/Blu-ray/some physical medium, then the issue is cut and dry. If someone takes the physical medium from you without your consent, they have stolen.

      There's no disagreement on that between pro/anti IP.

      This question is, what about the content of the physical medium? What about digital (internet ) distribution?

      And here, I think it's important to realize that the copying of information is simply the reconfiguring of one's own property to a pattern.

      Let's say you create a statue with your own marble (totally legit). I see your statue and then I take my own marble and carve it to look exactly like yours. Have I stolen from you? How? You own your marble and I own my marble. That's not in dispute. By copying your idea, I simply reconfigured my marble, which I own. For you to say that I stole from you is to claim that your idea gives you some sort of right to control how I may or may not configure my own marble. A right to control is the definition of ownership. So the IP claim is that since you have an idea, that gives you a partial ownership of the marble of others. This is clearly not just. Because the acquisition of ownership, against the consent of the prior/current owner is itself theft. You may say that you don't want to own the marble, but by decreeing limits on how my marble may be used, you are in fact asserting ownership. Since this is done without my consent, it is theft.


    5. ..Continued

      So back to the video. I own my harddrive, you don't. When I copy your video, what is really happening is that I'm configuring my property into a pattern. Your property (your harddrive) is still in your possession, configured into the pattern of your video. By copying, I've not taken any of your property. I've simply reconfigured mine. For you to claim that your idea (on how to configure harddrives - which is what the digital content really is) gives you the right to prevent me from configuring my property in any manner I want, is to infringe my ownership of my harddrive (I'm obviously using harddrive to mean any storage medium for digital content).

      Now, it is true that you could limit access to your server, which is your property. To hack into your server would be trespassing no different than breaking into your house. But that would be extent of my crime: trespassing. If I broke into your house, then left without taking anything, I've still violated your property and thus are liable for some level of crime against you. Hacking into your server would be the same. Since copying the content of your server is still just me reconfiguring my own harddrive, it would still not be theft. Assuming I didn't reconfigure your server (thus vandalizing your server - which is a crime/act of theft), but just downloaded files (copied the pattern of information to reconfigure my harddrive), your property is still configured the same way as before. Just mine is too now.

      For a pay-for-access server, you can provide a contract that states you will seek additional payment for breach of the contract, which may stipulate that the user must delete (reconfigure their harddrive) the content once viewed and may not copy it for others. But this is just a contract issue. Not IP. If someone broke the contract, they alone are liable for the damages specified in the contract (i.e., something they agreed to). A 3rd party that received digital copies of the content would not be liable because they were not party to the contract and they have only reconfigured their own property, not in anyway damaged/reduced yours.

      Now, this is all in reference to the just use of force. I.e., what can you defend with violence/threat of violence. This does not preclude social methods of "enforcement" based on a "moral IP" concept (as opposed to legal IP). That is, we can say the copier is a morally deficient person and organize non-violent sanction against them. No one is entitled to the acceptance of others, so if the rest of us choose to ostracize (not associate with, not conduct business with) a copier, that's perfectly fine. Plagiarism is already "enforced" this way (in addition to and separate from any legal IP enforcement). For the most part, a plagiarist is "punished" socially. Well at least some times, and maybe more in the past. Nowadays, they go on to write screenplays for Steven Spielberg.

      But the point is, you could organize with others that held your views on the "wrongness" of copying certain information. Create a digital "wall of shame" where violators of the norms you hold are listed and with whom those in your alliance will not do business with. If enough people share your views, and participate in a system like this, you could make life unpleasant for the copiers, without violating any of their property. Social acceptance is a powerful "force", so this may be enough to keep many people compliant. But if it's not, you still aren't justified in using/threatening violence against copiers, since they have not actually taken any of your property (your harddrive remains with you).

    6. I see a difference in using my marble and my hands to copy a statue (the accuracy of the copy depends on my sculpting skills) and taking a digit media and making and identical copy. A more accurate analogy would be to film a new video that attempts to copy the contents of the other video, would it not?

    7. No. IP is still all about the configuration of physical property. You're trying to introduce the concept of the effort involved as being relevant. It's not. The labor it requires you to develop accurate sculpting skills (those needed to make a copy) doesn't magically impart upon you the right to copy that is denied those who have just been lazy and rely on the perfection and efficiency of computers doing the work for them (such as video copiers).

      The reason the analogy seems imperfect is only because of the technology involved. We're now in the age of 3D printers. I haven't been in the 3D CGI business for a while, but even at the turn of the century, image-based modeling was really starting to take off (a software technique that takes several reference images taken from different angles, and then computes a 3D model from just analyzing the imagery). So right now you think the analogy is inaccurate because it requires someone capable of eyeballing a statue and then accurately carving a copy by hand. But in a few years, it'll probably be reality that you could simply take pictures from a distance, feed those pictures into a computer, and have a computer-controlled robotic arm turn your blank chunk of marble into a precise copy in a matter of hours/minutes. The principle would be the same. Who owns the marble? If you own the marble that the copy is made from, you may configure it into whatever shape you want (if you can).

      Currently, the "pirates" own their harddrives. When they copy a video, they are not taking the video from anyone. The originator of the video still possesses the harddrives that are configured by the specific pattern of information. Now there are just more people who have configured THEIR harddrives to the same pattern. Whether they do this by hand, or with computer precision and speed, matters not to the principle at hand.

    8. It's quite possible I don't understand the full scope of the issue, and I will continue to study, but here is my current opinion.

      For one, I do not believe the marble is a good analogy. Nor is the analogy of what you copy to your machine.

      Why not copy digits in the computer from the Federal Reserve and copy them into your bank account? It's just "intellectual property", correct? No physical goods at all. Just patterns.

      If you don't think it's ok for people to do that, and copy it from their server, to their harddrive, up to their bank account, why would it be ok for someone to do the same with video, audio, or digital goods?

      I abhor force as much as any libertarian. Yet, libertarians agree that when a contract is involved, or stealing is engaged upon, that it is quite ok to use the government we have in place to help settle disputes.

      The same would apply for laws on the books.

      No, I believe, right or wrong, the majority is more on the side of........if you produce a video........you own the rights to the said video.

      Libertarians speak often of slippery slopes. It seems the world of "no IP rights" would be much more dangerous than the flawed system we have currently.

      I will continue to monitor the issue and try to learn more from it.

    9. Labour theory of value libertarians...

    10. Johnny, are you claiming to be some sort of libertarian? Because appealing to majority is not only a logical fallacy, but in stark contrast to any coherent philosophy. You abhor force, but because the majority of people support a fallacious idea, and there are laws on the books (what are laws but the opinions of politicians enforced through violence?), well..then it's ok?

      On what basis do you predict a no IP rights "world" is more dangerous? Spouting self-serving predictions with no explanation, evidence, or logic doesn't do much for your credibility nor indicate you're really seeking to learn.

      Marble is a perfect analogy. See, I can play that game too. Just stating "I do not believe [that is] a good analogy" without any explanation or counter argument just comes across as obstinant, not an indicator of good will or a desire for discovering truth and justice.

      Your Federal Reserve example is incoherent. No libertarian I"m aware of supports the enforced monopoly the Fed has in controlling the "money supply". We use this imaginary currency because it is forced upon us (legal tender laws). There's nothing just about the system at all. Nor is there anything real about it.

      Your question is nonsensical. I can't copy numbers to my computer and have it be recognized as money. That's just nonsense. You might as well ask me about IP laws for space aliens. The only way it would make sense is if I hacked into a bank computer and altered the numbers for my account. In other words, I reconfigured the property of the bank (the physical servers they own/contract for). And so yes, that's infringing on their property for the same reasons I've explained in depth. But even that's generously filling in a lot of gaps in your bizarre question.

      Seriously, maybe you need to do some more research before engaging people on this subject. You're clearly not well educated on the issues at hand. To paraphrase Rothbard, it's ok to be ignorant on a specialized topic of knowledge, but to vociferously advocate a position, while remaining in that state of ignorance is pretty irresponsible. Especially when it's clear that your position is far from unbiased since you seek to gain revenue from the violent enforcement of a property right that you have not defended logically, but instead have just asserted for clear personal gain. Couple with your continued reliance on the "labor theory of entitlement", I think you need to cover your fundamentals first.

    11. Johnny,

      I wrote another reply and then the stupid blogging login lost it.

      Saying something isn't a good analogy, without explaining why just comes across as obstinant.

      Go back and read my other posts in this comment thread. You do not have the right to reconfigure the property of others. To reconfigure the bank server that contains your account info, would not only require hacking (trespass), but the manipulation of the actual physical medium on which that info was stored (server harddrives). Your question has nothing at all to do with IP. And it's quite bizarre and made up. How many people are capable of hacking into the Fed Reserve, and into their own bank, and covering their tracks enough to get away with it? And the Fed is a bizarre example for a libertarian to use, since the entire cartel it runs is due to criminal government enforcement of legal tender "laws".

      I've already covered contract. But again, contracts do not bind 3rd parties. And when you say "stealing", you're just begging the question. You haven't demonstrated why configuring my own property into a pattern that copies yours is stealing. When you insist on using that word, you demonstrate you're not interested in arguing honestly. Not until you establish that you have a property right in my harddrive.

      No, libertarians do not agree it's ok to use government to settle disputes. Or when there are "laws on the books". What kind of "libertarians" are you hanging out with? Laws on the books are just the opinions of politicians enforced through threats of violence. There is no validity to them at all and any libertarian worth the name knows that. Government arbitration involves the continued theft of the property of others. Mighty rich that you go around accusing others of stealing when you want to use stolen goods to fund your dispute resolution (and enforce your imaginary property rights).

      And then you appeal to majority opinion. Not only is that an instant logical fallacy, but for a libertarian especially it's...well it shows you haven't a clue what a libertarian is.

      And then, without any evidence or logic, you just assert that the world of "no IP rights" would be much more dangerous.... on what basis do you make that claim? You have so far demonstrated (and humbly admitted to) a severe degree of ignorance on these issues. So the obvious thing to do in that state of ignorance is to make predictions about a societal order you clearly haven't the first clue about?

      I advise you to keep learning. But I also advise you to take Rothbard seriously when he said:

      "It is no crime to be ignorant of economics, which is, after all, a specialized discipline and one that most people consider to be a 'dismal science.' But it is totally irresponsible to have a loud and vociferous opinion on economic subjects while remaining in this state of ignorance."

      Add to economics, IP, libertarianism, justice, and basic logic skills.

  7. Truth be told i've never heard of Kinsella before any of this silly nonsense...and I have no reason to look into who he is after his behavior. And I have been a regular at Mises.org and lewrockwell.com. He almost comes off as a little jealous...no? "legion of fans"? Who the hell even says that?

    -There's nothing wrong with holding an opposing view...be a man and debate the ideas...nothing else matters. Who cares whether or not Bob writes a book? Who cares about anything other than the debate? You have a date set up so be patient and prove yourself then. I never understood how someone can judge another human being based on one single issue? Many libertarians disagree on issues...yet I don't see them resort to the childish immaturity that Stephan has displayed. It's beyond strange to me how someone can act this way unless there was something we're all missing? Maybe, as I mentioned before...jealousy? Who knows (or cares) at this point.

    Stephan sounds like a man that is full of himself...with no real reason to be. No one's impressed.

    1. It's inconceivable that someone who claims to hang out around LRC and Mises.org has not heard of Kinsella.





  8. I'm agnostic on this issue.
    But I design stuff (software / hardware), and yes, it's copyrighted and/or patented.
    What happens to me and my livelihood if someone clones my work before I can amortize the expense of development.
    This is NOT labor theory. My labor has palpable value and IS property, else why would people PAY me for it?
    I respectfully read Kinsella's arguments and I must admit he's not an idiot. But, can he offer a way that ideas are allowed to be developed and be compensated for? (bad syntax, sorry)

    The small time inventor is a font of innovation. If he doesn't see a way to profit from his idea safely, he's going to shine it on, and we're all the poorer for it.

    1. You're not an agnostic. You're clearly using arguments from the pro-IP side. Don't pick a side and then say you don't have a side.

      Your body is your property. Your labor is an action performed by that body. It is not an additional property as it is not a thing. It simply the description of you using your body. You can own a swingset, but to say you also have additional property in swinging is nonsense. Swinging is an action performed with the swingset. Labor is an action performed with your body. It's not a separate thing.

      "People pay me for [my labor]" is just saying they are paying you to move your body to perform certain tasks. The issue of property is still just about your body.

      It is not Kinsella's burden to offer ways you can find compensation for ideas absent state coercion. Showing IP is unjust is all that he's required to do. If I prove that rape is wrong, you aren't justified in continuing to rape until I teach you how to woo a woman to gain her consent. If it's unjust, you stop. Figuring out how to achieve your goals without violating others is your job.

      But he HAS presented many examples. If you read his work, you know this. So why are you dishonestly stating he has not? He elaborates in depth on first-to-market advantage, live-performance vs recording sales, authenticity advantage (e.g., anyone can make a Harry Potter movie, but J.K. Rowling will be paid a lot for her endorsement/involvement with a specific one), the vibrant market before IP monopoly privilege, etc. I can only conclude stubbornness on your part for insisting that this is an unanswered objection.

      Your last sentence is pure conjecture and based on NOTHING. You do not have any basis for knowing "we're all poorer for it". You're simply making up words. And there's MOUNTAINS of proof that even without direct monetary compensation, people invent and innovate. Some purely for the joy of it. Some to improve the lives of others. Some to develop a reputation and portfolio. To say that "if he doesn't see a way to profit...he's going to shine it on" is contradicted by literally millions of counter-examples. This is WILLFUL blindness on your part.

  9. A few brief comments. I have always been one to speak my mind. Yes, I predicted Wenzel would find a way to get out of the debate, but if he doesn't, my prediction was wrong. Alert the media. Yawn.

    I also did not understand why he needed so long to prepare for an hour long debate. I can do it anytime. Since Wenzel has been publicly slamming my IP ideas for a few years now, I had assumed he was familiar with them and had already read Against IP. But his explanation that he wants time to read this and other works makes sense. Fine by me.

    I still think his earlier post about "we'll see how good his IP skills are" re my informal "guess" about the probably outcome of the RonPaul.com dispute was snarky, but whatever. Hey, it's a free country. Or it used to be. Or something.

    I see no real questions or requests here from Wenzel to respond to. It seems to me he's making a big deal out of nothing--wow, Kinsella is actually discussing in public things surrounding an upcoming event. Alert the media. Kinsella is being honest and frank. Alert the media. In my mind there is no rancor and I of course look forward to a civil and honest debate with Wenzel. Just because I have opinions and have the balls to state them does not gainsay this. And if you will look over the past posts and comments by Wenzel over the years you will see many examples of statements that are snide, inflammatory, snarky, veiled, whatever. So what? Everyone needs to hahden the fack up. I mean Wenzel and I are big boys, both libertarians and both interested in the truth. The IP issue is not easy, so it makes sense there would be confusion and disagreement on this. That's why we planned to discuss it--each to see if we could make headway with each other.

    As for the IP arguments in this thread--I've done this 500 times over, and am a bit tired of it. I've laid out a very clear, explicit, coherent, libertarian oriented case for it in plain English, and it gets a bit tedious to have initiates to this debate dive-bombing in and trotting out the same old stuff that has been explicitly responded to and debunked literally hundreds of times. Makes you think they are either ignorant, stubborn, or just plain insincere and not really interested in the truth. So I am glad Wenzel is boning up on the IP abolition case so that we can have an informed, intelligent discussion and I will not have to reinvent the wheel a dozen times.

    By the way, Bob, one final thing. If you believe I have done anything immoral, "inappropriate" (whatever that means), rude, offensive, or insulting to you, feel free to point out to me (either privately or publicly, I don't care) exactly what you feel this to be, and if you are right, I'll be happy to apologize. I really don't care about these issues so much--they are always used as distractions for getting to substance and truth. Which is my only concern here: whether IP is justified or not.

  10. One more comment: Bob writes: "And, LOL, why the hell is Kinsella so worried about my "legions of fans"?:
    'The bottom line is Wenzel is wrong on IP, and even his legions of fans mostly realize this'"

    ? Who said I'm "worried" about them? I'm pointing out one reason you must sense you are the underdog here, if even your fans largely support the anti-IP case.

    "To paraphrase Ayn Rand, I'm not writing for "my legions of fans," I am writing for myself."

    I fail to see the relevance of this trite and obvious comment. I never suggested you are not. And of course none of this has any bearing on whether IP is legitimate, which is what we will discuss in our debate. We are not going to be debating all this irrelevant stuff.

    "As I explained during my recent interview at Daily Bell, I structured my life a long time ago so I could think independently and write independently, that is what I am doing."

    Good for you. I never implied otherwise. In case you are implying I did.

    "Kinsella is as wrong about this as the other points I have outlined above. Bringing up my "legions of fans" is a very odd Ellsworth Toohey-like thing to for Kinsella to be doing."

    Either you don't understand The Fountainhead or you didn't understand my comment. I'm happy your economic-Austrian and libertarian writing is popular. That's a very good sign of intellectual progress. As for Toohey, his character and relationship to Roark was revealed in the exchange when he said Tell me Mr. Roark what do you think of me? And Roark replied "but I don't think of you." In other words he is some psychological parasite and even nihilist. I fail to see how my pointing out that Wenzel is here championing an idea that is contrary to his own libertarian and Austrian ideas--as supported by the fact that even people who like his other writings are moving in the anti-IP direction--has anything to do with the Toohey character's significance in the Fountainhead. But then maybe my imagination is limited, and I confess I have come to greatly dislike The Fountainhead, which is a bizarre story of IP terrorism (Roark's bombing of Cortlandt homes based on his silly Randian IP ideas) and a narcissistic, impractical weirdo who doesn't want to give his customers what they want (as opposed to Atlas, which I recently re-read and think is amazing and great). In any case, this, too, is a distraction from the issue at hand: whether or not Kinsella is like Toohey is beside the point and has no bearing on whether IP is justified.

  11. "As for the IP arguments in this thread--I've done this 500 times over, and am a bit tired of it. I've laid out a very clear, explicit, coherent, libertarian oriented case for it in plain English, and it gets a bit tedious to have initiates to this debate dive-bombing in and trotting out the same old stuff that has been explicitly responded to and debunked literally hundreds of times. Makes you think they are either ignorant, stubborn, or just plain insincere and not really interested in the truth."

    Amen to that. It's like they all believe they're the first people to have these "insights", and then, to add insult to injury, to add to the fact that they are displaying proof that they aren't adequately interested in the ideas, they then accuse their interlocutors of dodging, avoiding, and other nonsense that they believe constitutes a counter-argument.

  12. There will always be new people to this debate.

    For instance, do you think most of the United States citizens are "Pro-IP" or against IP? Of course, all of them should go read a big treatise by Kinsella before asking him any questions.

    I understand Kinsella's view. He has debated these things and reached a conclusion. Fine. So has Ben Bernanke with the Federal Reserve. Maybe I should read everything Bernanke has to say if I want to "talk" about the FED.

    I can understand Kinsella saying, hey, I have put a lot of time into this issue, everything is written down, and if you want to go read it, here is the link.

    Instead, he snaps "I'm a very important man". Kinsella is no more important or less important than anyone else who writes here or takes the time to talk about this issue.

    I'm the most libertarian person I personally know in Indiana, yet, I'm not libertarian enough because I believe the fruit of my work does not have the right to be stolen and re-sold without my permission.

    Why build a video company when (In Kinsella's world) people can just download the content, create a similar website, name it what they want, and then use my female wrestling characters (who they don't pay, I do), and then profit from the works by selling at the same price, at a less price, whatever.

    I think most reasonable people see massive flaws with that. If I'm not smart enough to debate this, too bad. I guess I'm just another stupid American.

    Oh well. Labels. I'm starting to find that Kinsella's class of libertarian seems no different than those arrogant, rich, liberal types that always go "ughhhhh" at those "icky" libertarians.

    If you don't tow the line, you are "incoherent", or you haven't taken time to read all of their writings, etc. I welcome all of you to go read all of my writings before you debate me. Just don't talk to me anymore unless you have read everything I have put forth, because that is the double standard that seems to be required here.

    Remember, new people are always coming into this. Most, like it or hate it, just are not going to read really long winded writings. If you can't break this up into bits, and make it immediately understandable, you have a hard road.