Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Battle Over

Ron Paul  has filed,with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), a global governing body that is an agency of the United Nations,  an international Uniform Domain-Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) complaint against the owners of and He is asking the organization to turn over the web addresses and to him.

There have been some initial reactions to this move by Dr. Paul and they should be examined. However, I believe that the action by Dr. Paul requires a deeper analysis than the initial reactions, but let's first look at these early reactions.

The current owners of the web site criticize Dr. Paul for going to a United Nations organization to force them to turnover the web addresses. They even quote the negative things Dr. Paul has said about the United Nations while he was in office. But what Dr. Paul said about the United Nations and his current actions are not necessarily contradictory. He may not believe that the UN should exist or be an enforcing body, but if they are, that is the body he must appeal to. What is his alternative, to call the local sheriff in the county he lives in?

Second, the current owners write:
Back in 2007 we put our lives on hold for you, Ron, and we invested 5 years (close to 10,000 hours) of tears, sweat and hard work into this site at great personal sacrifice. We helped raise millions of dollars for you, we spread your message of liberty as far and wide as we possibly could, and we went out of our way to defend you against the unjustified attacks by your opponents. Now that your campaigns are over and you no longer need us, you want to take it all away?
But just because someone worked long and hard for Ron Paul doesn't mean he can take Dr. Paul's car, his house, his clothes or anything else he owns. In other words, the claim that the owners of the site worked hard for RP doesn't advance their right to control the web sites and They may have worked hard, with Ron Paul even allowing them to use his car during the campaign, but that doesn't mean after the campaign is over they get to keep his car.

So none of the above initial arguments solve the real problem of who has the "right" to the web addresses and

But does Ron Paul have more of a claim on the addresses just because his name is Ron Paul?  No. According to, there are 46 people in the United States named Ron Paul. Thus, the problem with awarding a web address to a person based just on his name is severely complicated by the fact that many people may have the same name.

For the most part, WIPO appears to allow web address registration on a first come basis, except in situations where intentional confusion may occur. For example, the web address, belongs to the retailer Macy's. If it was owned by someone else who sold Macy's type goods and who just started the business, then WIPO would likely step in and turn the Macy's address over to the world famous retailer. These are the rules of the road, so to speak. They are not "natural rights." They are designed rights, as I believe all "rights" are. You can argue about who should design rights, how they should be designed, but they are nevertheless designed rights.

So how does this apply to web addresses? For the most part it would seem that first come should apply in most cases, if we are thinking along the lines of a private property society. However, we must ask, can registration of addresses ever be considered improper in a private property society? Suppose I register the address, and put nothing on the web site other than the words "Please help" and a donation box. Would this be improper? If I am not in the emergency care business, I would certainly be knowingly misleading people. I would strongly be implying through my web site that I am THE Red Cross.

Some cases of misleading are more obvious than others. If I called up a concert auditorium and told them I represented Lady GaGa and was willing to book her in the auditorium for $1 million, got paid and showed up with a fat old lady that didn't know how to sing, but that I had renamed Lady GaGa, I would at least be sued and probably arrested. The auditorium owners and those who bought tickets would think they were misled.

The same goes, to a degree, with the web site If  a plumber with the name Ron Paul owns the site, than Dr. Paul would have no claim against him. The plumber wouldn't be trying to mislead. He would have just beaten Dr. Paul to the web address, without attempting to mislead and would be promoting his Ron Paul plumbing business. If two brothers named Ron and Paul  use the site to detail their adventures, then Dr. Paul would have no claim to the site against them. Indeed, if a person not named Ron Paul, registered the web site because he had developed a line of clothing called "Ron Paul" long before Dr. Paul became famous, he would not be attempting to mislead.  However, if the site is owned by someone that created the site after Ron Paul became famous and is selling Dr. Paul memorabilia and has images of Dr. Paul on the site, then we have a different story.

A google search for "Ron Paul" results in the web address showing up on the first page of search results. With the site not being owned by Dr. Paul, it is very misleading. It is as if there was a famous steakhouse in a town named Abe's Steakhouse, and I named a steakhouse in the same town Abe's Steakhouse and it appeared on all the maps, instead of the Abe's Steakhouse that everyone really wants to go to. I might even put a sign on the entry way "replica" but still people are going to end up at my location because of the misleading name. That's what the current owners of are doing. They are not named Ron and Paul. They are not selling their own products that are not associated with Dr. Paul. They are selling Ron Paul memorabilia to people who are most likely searching the name Ron Paul to learn about liberty. It is very misleading.

Thus, since I believe all "rights" are designed rather than natural, I could see a Private Property Society emerging where web addresses are acknowledged on a first to register basis unless it is outright misleading registration, without the registrar having any other reason to hold the address other than to mislead.

I would have no problem living in such a society---and current web registration law appears to be generally along these lines and thus I see no reason why Dr. Paul shouldn't attempt to gain the web addresses for his own use.


  1. Wenzel, I strongly disagree with your assessment. Rothbard's "homesteading" principal applies here. The owner of was clearly a "homesteader" of the property, the website was an actively managed property. I'm a huge fan of Ron, but he is not infallible and we should call it like it is. Ron Paul doesn't even need this site, everyone knows this is not his site. Anyone with two brain cells can find Ron's official site in seconds. I do agree with your point on the UN (along those lines, if my house was being robbed I would escape on government roads and probably call the government police).

    1. It doesn't appear that Wenzel holds Rothbard's "homesteading" view, so that argument wouldn't hold against him.

    2. The other day here at EPJ I thought we were discussing homesteading in relation to drones. I would like to hear Mr. Wenzel address the homesteading angle of this. I wonder what Rothbard would say about all of this.

    3. Robert Wenzel said:

      "He may not believe that the UN should exist or be an enforcing body, but if they are, that is the body he must appeal to. What is his alternative, to call the local sheriff in the county he lives in?"

      The UN is not a legitimate enforcing body IN THE SENSE THAT it has no authority to enforce jack; It is NOT an enforcing body. Governments conspire through the UN to violate private property rights.

      Therefore Ron Paul's appeal to them is him conspiring with property rights violators to violate someone's property rights.

      There is no right to control what other people do with their own property, and since each individual owns his own thoughts there is no such thing as intellectual property.

      Also, no one has a right to the perceptions of others, so Ron Paul doesn't even have a claim to the name "Ron Paul".

      Any problems with the Internet would be solved by getting rid of government's interventions in utility companies and land lines.

      No one is entitled to own a portion of space simply because he or his property passed through it, as Walter Block seems to maintain - he must work it, or it must be required for the operation of his actual property.

      Physically flipping switches on a wave-generating (and -receiving) machine requires the immediate area around it.

      And unless someone physically captures the space he intends to use to pass waves (such as by capturing the land underneath the path to lay the medium of those waves), then he is not entitled to restrict the waves from others' wave-generating machines from entering the space through which his waves first traveled.

      Frequencies cannot be owned because they are generated from individual machines; The owner of each respective machine has a right to generate waves at whatever frequency he likes.

      Looking forward to your discussion with Tucker about IP. Keep up the great work. Thank you.

    4. 1. Like it or not World Intellectual Property Organization is the governing body in the present world and the only one in the present world that RP can appeal to.

      2. Wenzel is not debating Tucker. He is debating Kinsella. Tucker is afraid to debate Wenzel. He is a weak theorist and has built his entire anti-IP theory based on a Kinsella paper.

    5. Ron Paul does not have a right to the name "Ron Paul".
      If he did, he could stop others from naming their own son Ron Paul. "Ron Paul" is not his property. It is just his label. Did his parents ask anyone permission to name their son Ron Paul? No. They just went ahead and gave him the name, because it ISN'T OWNED by anyone. I'm sure there were others that "homesteaded" (in 'property' vernacular) that name before Ron Paul's parents did, and i'm also sure they didn't violate any copyrights when they chose that name for their own son.

      Furthermore, if another man named Ron Paul steps in and gives the owners of the domain "Ronpaul" permission, what then?

      All of this is just absurd mental gymnastics to justify the currently not substantiated I.P. You people cannot even help contradict yourselves if you believe "Ron Paul" is truly some kind of intellectual property.

    6. It RW makes clear that ANY Ron Paul that grabs the web address is entitled to it. No Mental gymnastics.

      But that anyone whose name isn't Ron Paul that grabs the address to drive traffic away from "our" Ron Paul is misdirecting traffic. No mental gymnastics here, it is a fact.

    7. whatever the legalities and technicalities pf the issue, one thing is crystal clear. the operators of the site are not supporters as they claim to be. This is not 'supportive.' As a supporter, I would give up the site for a penny. They've already made money off of doctor paul and seemed to be promoters, if they wanted to continue being promoters now, they give up the site for free or cheap, if they want to continue the gravy train, they fight, there is no middle ground here. they are enemies, regardless of the past. Whether they are legally right or libertarianly right, they are not morally right. They are misleading, they should at least come clean, we don't support ron, but we like money.

    8. Domain name ownership does not equate to land ownership. The subject being addressed is the allocation of network/database resources owned and operated by ICANN, which is delegated the authority of maintaining domain names. You are not required to query ICANN's root servers to resolve the "" domain, you could very well run your own root servers and keep your "" domain. Only issue for you would be to convince others to use your root servers instead. Because ICANN complies with trademark/intellectual property law, the WIPO is granted the ability to arbitrate disputes related to these issues.

  2. excuse me Mr. Wenzel but this is the most bullshit defense I have read. it clearly stems from your false IP stance and your tendency to raise certain individuals a cult.

    and the following quote is NOT an appeal to authority, just to give some more substance to my text:

    "Moreover, more novel extensions of trademark, such as
    rights against trademark dilution or against certain forms
    of cybersquatting, cannot be justified. Just as a trademark
    holder does not have a right to his mark, neither does he
    have a right against his mark’s dilution. The law against
    cybersquatting is simply based on an economically ignorant
    opposition to “scalping” and arbitrage. There is, of course,
    nothing wrong with being the first to acquire a domain
    name and thereafter selling it to the highest bidder."

    ~ Stephan Kinsella, Against Intellectual Property, page 59

    1. So Wenzel held his views on IP before the controversy came up, but in your view this is Ron Paul cult activity because Wenzel is being consistent with his views, which he held before the dispute. Nice logic. Typical of the anti-IP crowd.

    2. can you even read?

      "it clearly stems from your false IP stance *AND*
      your tendency to raise certain individuals a cult."

    3. I agree Georgiv. And what is this superior righteousness from the previous reply about 'typical anti-IP crowd'. And, of course, the pro-IP crowd is simply illogical and wrong!

    4. @ The Cleaner

      I have yet to see any consistent logic out of you. Don't throw stones in a glass house.

    5. Brilliant argumentation via non-argument, I will have to use it if I am ever boxed in during an argument, which has never yet happened to me,

    6. @TheCleaner - You misread or misinterpreted the original comment to a LARGE degree. So, your response was of no substance. Then you say that you have never been boxed in by an argument...riiiiiight. We are to believe you have never posited a false line of reasoning in your life? Are you older than 13 years old?

      However...I guess that it's hard to say that your original comment was even an argument since it didn't address anything OP actually said. So, maybe you are right. Maybe you've spent your whole life responding to people randomly with no worry about what they actually said. That's a good way not to get boxed in. You sound just like Wenzel when he defends "IP."

  3. Whoa! You're a libertarian (and I believe that, of course) and you don't believe in "natural rights"!?!?!?!?

    Please explain, RW.

    1. Hi Capn,

      Yes, my book will be titled, "Why I Am a Libertarian Even Though There Are No Natural Rights."

      It would be difficult to go into detail in a blog post, much less a comment, it requires book length treatment, but that is my view.

      The book should be out this summer.

    2. Cool, Bob, I look forward to it!!

    3. Robert, I agree with you on "designed rights." I've even argued that there is no quantum-mechanical property that makes physical property able to be owned over intellectual property. Property rights are axiomatic. My socialist friends don't believe we have a right to own anything and we exercise agression when we claim a right to property.

      I do, however, think there are natural rights in the sense that some things are so engrained in our psyche through evolution, God, or whatever mechanism creates it that it's a "natural" state of existence. We feel a need to defend ourselves. We also feel a need to own property. One of the first things a child learns to say is "mine!" (a need to own property is not the same as how that property is defined -- I think people generally also feel violated when a piece of their IP is stolen from them -- socialists feel violated when they don't own a piece of everything -- but the right to property is engrained in our souls). We feel a need to move around relatively freely, and we rebel when we're caged.

      So the specific definition of property is man-made, however the need to own property is innate (which is why we bother to define it).

    4. Really, my opinion is Kinsella, Tucker, and Gordon have much better intellectual argument on IP and CR. After just reading RW's poor analogous examples defending them in this post and many others, really makes me question whether his book is just going to be a big waste of time.

    5. And just where have you read Gordon's view on IP?

      Forgive me, but you are just picking things out of your ass. Point me to Gordon supporting Kinsella and Tucker on anti-IP. No way never happened.

    6. See David Gordon's article, "Patents and Copyrights Should be Repealed "

      Now swallow. Way, dude.

    7. Sounds like you are little boxed in, cleaner

  4. As I was reading this I was seething a little bit. Then I remember Wenzel has been consistent on this issue. How does Lew Rockwell square with this? Paul's action is clearly not Rothbardian. And frankly whether you agree with IP or not the owners or have earned compensation. The put up a lot of money to get this site and deserve to be paid.

    1. I'm sorry, but when has Paul ever been a Rothbardian? Paul has never publicly called for the abolition of the state. Though he's made throw-away lines about preferring the Articles of Confederation, he has a LONG and consistent track-record of promoting the US Constitution, which is not at all a libertarian document or something that Rothbard would promote.

      Paul is not a libertarian, nor a Rothbardian (I don't conflate the two, but am addressing "clearly not Rothbardian" part).

    2. I've seen that video before. Nonsense. The man has a very long history of public life where he's had a consistent message. A few out of context quotes, that are intentionally misinterpreted doesn't change that mountain evidence.

      First, Ron Paul is neither a voluntarist NOR a minarchist. The Constitution, or even the AOC are not minarchist documents. The Constitution describes a government MUCH larger than the minimal night-watchman state, and the AOC was a compact between States, none of which could honestly be called minimal (heck, state-sponsored religion was a common theme of at least some of them).

      His comments on private security could easily be agreed to by Constitutionalists. In the context of his lifelong message, it's the CURRENT "security system" that's flawed, not the theoretical "Constitutional" one.

      His comments on taxation as theft are intentionally taken out of context to the man's consistent message. Ron Paul is referring to INCOME taxation, which he consistently denounces, and yes, has on several occasions called theft. When has he ever made similar statements about the taxation described in the original Constitution? He's even favorably spoken in of "direct taxes" (head count) since they're not "redistributive".

      Is Ron Paul a man of integrity or a politician with the "ends justify my lies" ethos like the rest? Because that's the contradiction "Ron Paul is a libertarian" supporters propose. If he's a true libertarian, then he has outright LIED, many times over. One quick example off the top of my head:

      Jon Stewart: But surely there is some role for government?
      RP: protect us from force, from fraud.

      I think he had a similar exchange with Colbert and maybe even Maher. He has made so many OUTRIGHT statements on the "proper role" of government, that the only explanation given is "well, he has to say that to get elected....if he came out in favor of abolishing the state, he'd never get anywhere...but that's his true belief".

      How's that any different than the apologists for EVERY SINGLE OTHER POLITICIAN? "Obama really is pro-peace, he just needs to say and do hawkish things to make sure he gets a second term"

      Plus, it's a big insult to the man's integrity. I don't agree with Ron Paul's philosophy, but I do admire that he's been 100% consistent in abiding by it and speaking it. Clearly IN SPITE of the harm it's done to his political career. Seriously, Ron Paul was the most impotent member of congress. He didn't really get ANYTHING accomplished. That's not an insult, that's a compliment, because it's a result of him sticking to his principles. And he didn't do so with some sort of big political end game. Do you really think that for 30 years he was being consistent to a fake set of principles as part of a long term scheme of "I'll set a track record of integrity, based on a lie, so that I can run for president eventually and people will listen to me because I was so consistent to a message that is still JUST AS FOREIGN AND UNTHINKABLE [strict adherence to the Constitution] to the VAST MAJORITY of voters as my supposed real philosophy of complete non-aggression [?!}"

      Are we to believe that a man who has put principle above pragmatism in such a

    3. ....continued

      Are we to believe that a man who has put principle above pragmatism in such an admirable way was really just playing the game of politics? To what end? Again, he had no idea he would end up on the national stage in such a big way. I really have to conclude the man was just doing it from integrity, which outright contradicts claims that the message he's lived by was really just a compromise for the purpose of political gain. You insult the man to suggest otherwise.

      Sorry, based on the overwhelming amount of evidence, I can only conclude that Ron Paul is NOT a libertarian and truly is a statist of some stripe (again, not even a minarchist, if those actually exist). A few quotes pulled here and there, ignoring their context (again, prime example is the clear distinction he's made regarding the income tax), does not convince me otherwise. It does strongly support a conclusion that the cult of personality is so strong, that some people are desperate to project something onto the man they love/admire that he himself has never boldly, openly proclaimed (as he has so courageously done with his true philosophy).

  5. And why, pray tell, did Ron Paul not make an issue of this immediately?
    Why did he allow the use of this domain to go on until he was good and ready to use outside force (from the UN, no less) to get his way?

    Was it maybe because he did not want to alienate people that were willing to donate and vote?

    Sure, we can discuss the technicalities (without resolution as i've yet to hear any satisfactory argument pro-IP yet some people are sticking with it), but the question is not if he CAN do this; SHOULD Ron Paul do this from a moral standpoint?

    By the way, there is a big difference concerning Ron Paul between the state and the UN. Ron Paul has always maintained the constitution should be respected, which means he believes in the state. However he has NEVER acknowledged any right the U.N. would supposedly have. So it is utterly hypocritical to use the U.N.
    He is not using it because it is unavoidable, as in using roads or using police after aggression had taken place. He did not have a problem with this domain up til now, and wants to force them out using a body that has NO authority whatsoever in any libertarian view (minarchists DO believe in the state and the police). There is no "necessity" here. Nothing was stolen; He is not impeded on using his property since his so-called property "Ron Paul" (which Wenzel admits cannot even justifiably be called his "property" since others share it) can still be used (e.g. I see a lot of hypocrisy here.

    Goes to show; do not worship any person.

    Ron Paul is going to do himself more harm than good. Already there are people who see a double standard in condemning the U.N., and then using it to strong arm good people out of something they justifiably registered.

    1. I'm not so sure it's that clear cut. The constitution provides that treaty law has the same status as domestic law, assuming it was confirmed by 2/3rd of the senate. If the US entered into this agreement, not only does this become under international law the proper forum, but it also becomes that forum domestically. Therefore, assuming that the US is party to such an agreement, then there is no distinction here between US domestic law, IE state system law, and it's obligations under international law. The idea that you can believe in the state system but not agree with the UN is a bit of a jump, because the post Westphalian state system provides that agreements and treaties, entered into voluntarily by the appropriate state negotiators, and ratified by appropriate internal processes, have the same status as domestic law, and that status can not be changed accept by agreement between both parties (states).

      In other words, if you endorse the modern state system, you must endorse one of it's most basic elements, treaty law, therefore you endorse the UN which was created by treaty, and you also endorse then this regulation regime, which is also treaty law. There's no legal argument to the contrary that would hold water.

    2. Phil, the Constitution is a delusion. Read Lysander Spooner's "No Treason: The Constitution of No Authority"

      It's available free online.

    3. That's clearly not the point I'm making, I agree with Lysander, whom I've read. However, RP can't be considered someone who would abolish the state, although I think he secretly agrees with the idea. What he's said is he supports the constitution, and through that, all the things I spoke of flow.

    4. @ Phil

      So basically, what you're saying then, is that Ron Paul is not a libertarian to begin with, even in the minarchist sense of the word?

    5. I suppose I can't know what's in the man's heart, but politically he's always been outspoken to limiting the government within the confines of the constitution, and described himself as a "Constitutionalist". Perhaps that was just a political way of concealing his belief that the state should be abolished altogether. As far as I know, he's never issued such a statement.

  6. This post is an utter embarrassment. Full of kowtowing apologia and hero cult worship to excuse what is obviously an act of aggression from Ron Paul (of whom I admired greatly up until this pathetic incident).

    Ron Paul does not "deserve" to own a website that is titled "". Just because it's his legal name in the title, it doesn't mean he gets to own what someone else created.

    1. You are on the right track but RP does not want the website, just the domain name. Bur RP should buy the name from the owner and it was his own fault he did not procure it earlier for himself.

  7. Wow,

    I thought this was a libertarian blog, a free market capitalism blog, a property rights blog. I was wrong.

    In wenzel's statist anti-property rights opinion.. If someone owns property and you want it, its ok to go to the government and request they use force to take that property and give it to you.

    Wenzel is a fraud.

    1. Yes Wenzel is a fraud, but not the people who are gaining traffic from using Ron Paul's name.

      Brilliant logic, you should design the next space shuttle.

    2. How are they a fraud? Are they claiming to be Ron Paul or even claiming to be his official site? They are not, and they clearly state this. Ron Paul has no claim to their property.

      However, Wenzel does claim to be pro-property rights, pro-free markets, and an austrain. He is not, his claims of what his website is is a fraud...

    3. The "people who are gaining traffic" are not representing themselves to be Ron Paul.

      When you walk into a McDonald's owned by Steve Grabowski, do you cry: "Fraud! The sign right outside CLEARLY says "McDonald's"!! Do you not see the apostrophe?? FRAUD! Fraud I say!"

  8. Wow, I actually found something that I disagree with RW on. LOL, Ron Paul using the UN for an "imminent domain name" theft...and Lew (Jim Demint's biggest fan) Rockwell on crowd control....

    Pathetic....pathetic on stilts! i've heard said...

    great chance for someone to grab the baton from RW as the most principled voice in the movement.

    i can't wait to hear from Block...I bet he sees things a bit more clearly.

    1. RW was the most principled voice? Since when?

  9. I'm anxious to read your book on designed rights vs. natural rights.

    But I'm in disagreement here too. Though I agree that Ron acts legitimately when he "attempts to gain the web address for his own use," petitioning a government body to apply the use of force to do so is illegitimate. The current owners have applied their resources in an entrepreneurial fashion to a previously unowned resource (the website and have therefore homesteaded the property. Property über alles.

    Even if it could be shown that the owners of the site did not homestead the site by mixing their labor with it, and even if it could be shown that the users of the site have acted fraudulently--which in a free private law society would draw legitimate claims against the owners--it does not follow that Ron Paul, former Congressman, should be the one to receive ownership rights currently held by the non-Ron owners. Perhaps Ron may have some claim to the site, then some transfer of ownership form the (alleged) fraudsters to Ron could occur. However, even in a private law society, there would be some arbitrage about this. Perhaps there is a third person, Bob, who the current owners encouraged to make the site and was then subsequently pushed out of any profits. Bob too would be a victim of fraud and would have a claim, that, similar to Ron, he would pursue through some private law arbitrage process. It certainly does not follow that Dr. Ron Paul SHOULD have THE claim over all others in the event that the current owners acted fraudulently.

    And one has to wonder, if there is fraud, was it just now uncovered? Look, if in 2007 or 2008, people went to and were tricked into believing the site was representative of the man himself, rather than a fan and support page, why didn't Ron try to repossess the website then? No, it is obvious that there is no fraud here, that the individuals who currently own the site are legitimate owners, and that no one, not even Dr. Paul himself has a right to petition a violent third party to confiscate it.

    That said, Ron is legitimate in applying all his public, non-violent efforts to attaining the site. The owners of the site now may be displeased that their icon wants their site because of its name, but this alone does not constitute a threat of or actual aggression, and is therefore legitimate. Even if every Paul supporter came to hate the current owners of the site, never again visited it, withdrew their names from the mailing list, and stopped buying the site's products, this would still be a legitimate libertarian boycott.

    I've read the current owner's little response. In it they seem to imply that Lew Rockwell is somehow behind the attempt to petition the UN. This is a very stupid accusation, or at least seems to be so as the site owners offer zero evidence. They make the ridiculous statement that Lew's recent blog posts over the subject have been "slanderous." This is nonsense. Slander is slander only if it's untrue. Lew hasn't said anything untrue. It's not slander. It's important here that both sides of this debate retain their principles. And hopefully, in the end, the two parties can come to a mutual agreement without involving the likes of some world government.

  10. Thank goodness you own! The truth is Ron should have secured this domain name long ago but yes, he's made the complaint and is entitled to do so as are the 46 other "Ron Paul's" but they haven't.

  11. "great chance for someone to grab the baton from RW as the most principled voice in the movement."

    Don't be ridiculous.

  12. I seem to remember that RP made an offer (which I assume still stands)for the URL. They wanted a lot (which is THEIR right).
    So maybe this is just a little negotiation shuffle which is completely legit in MY lib. world.
    So let's all chill and see if there's a settlement to everyone's gain.

  13. Wow, this is awful. First you attack Tucker, now you defend Paul. How much longer will it be before you start defending Obama? God protect libertarianism from some libertarians!

    1. Yes, we must protect Tucker and attack Paul!!

  14. I have read each and everyone of the comments here and I think everyone needs to re-read Wenzel's post. I don't think anyone gets the point. It is not a simple give Ron Paul argument, but an argument tied to rights and how they should be constructed.

    Commenters are assuming that Wenzel is denying a natural right, when he advocates be given to Ron Paul, but Wenzel is saying there are no natural rights. In a way, Wenzel has undermined every comment here, if it has not addressed Wenzel's foundational point against natural rights.

    1. I think that was quite apparent. What is not apparent is how he arrives at this conclusion; I guess we'll just have to wait for the book. I for one am not expecting much besides it being ripped apart by David Gordon, which I am looking forward too ;)

    2. Wenzel HAS NOT MADE a foundational point against natural rights.

      If someone says Ron Paul is right because "unicorns exist and they agree with Ron Paul", would it be fair to assume that he has only undermined himself? I think so.

      If you make ANY statement, you better back it up with solid logical arguments. Not "I don't believe in X, so Ron Paul is right. Why don't i believe in X? Wait for my book."

      And even if the book arrives, beforehand odds are at least 50/50 that his arguments are flawed and invalid.

    3. You continue to be dense. Wenzel says there are no "natural rights" that sounds pretty foundational to me.

      What is your argument that he is wrong?

  15. This is more serious than Wenzel and Rockwell realize.

    1. My confidence in these principled libertarians has just taken a big hit. I think this is serious because I'm probably not alone. They are advocating state violence to confiscate a "cyber-homesteaded" domain?? WFT??

    2. I'm not sure on Lew Rockwell's position but Wenzel has been hardcore in favor of IP for as long as I can remember and I have been coming to EPJ for almost two years.

      So based on that I think Wenzel is sticking to his principles.

    3. Lew Rockwell is pro-I.P. He cannot escape that.

      Otherwise he'd be a humongous hypocrite for siding with Ron Paul.

      And if he is pro-I.P., he should side with anyone that sues Ron Paul or his parents for using a name without asking permission from those who previously held it. The name Ron Paul was likely "homesteaded" long before he was named that way, and i don't remember anybody ever asking permission to use a name.

    4. Maybe I'm missing something.

      Has anyone on the RW, RP, LR side of this issue explained how the two EXTREMELY COMMON names qualify IN ANY WAY as intellectual property?

      Both names existed before Ron Paul. The full name "Ron Paul" existed before was born. How on earth can he claim the right to it?

      I bet I'm not missing anything. I bet these faux libertarians are showing their ugly side. Showing us that they love the state as long as it does their bidding.

      It is impossible to argue that Ron Paul has the sole rights to the use of two names that were around hundreds of years before he was born.

  16. Question: Does it matter at all that the current owner of the site is trading in Ron Paul's name? All that stuff that is being sold is about Ron Paul.

    I do agree with the earlier comment about why RP didn't do anything about this sooner. RP and his team are savvy enough to have known back then (X years ago) that the url would be useful. Also, an earlier posting at least suggested that RP did own the url (either the .org or the .com or both) at one time. If that's the case, then this whole thing is even stranger.

    IMHO, the RP team would have achieved a lot more by running the .org url. The .com url isn't nearly as important to RP as it is to a business that is starting out. (The asking price of $250k for the .com is pretty silly.)

    1. "Question: Does it matter at all that the current owner of the site is trading in Ron Paul's name? All that stuff that is being sold is about Ron Paul."

      As long as they don't pretend to have anything to do with Ron Paul or pretend to have his permission, no.

      They own those products, obviously. And they have a right to trade in them.

      Oh and by the way, has Ron Paul paid back all the money he got as wages, to the taxpayers forced to pay him?
      He does believe in "property rights", doesn't he?

  17. Using Ron Paul's name, intentionally, to create content is incorrect, unethical, and a form of identity theft.
    I disagree with many things Dr. Paul has said and done recently, but he is fully within his rights.

    As RW correctly points out, the MOTIVATION here is to use the cache and reputation of someone else's name, intentionally.

    Very different from a site run by someone else called Ron Paul.

    1. Identity theft would be claiming that you are someone who you are not. A website cannot claim anything, the website isn't Ron Paul. It's a website that promotes Ron Paul. There is a huge difference.

    2. Absolutely correct, juslen! Their is nothing from the site that is misleading, let alone fraud, or the absurd claim of identity theft.

  18. I don't see what the controversy is here. Ron Paul, the soon-to-be 77 year old, who is rarely on the internet himself, has many people working on his behalf with AND without his knowledge.

    Clearly, picking on a website owner via the UN is not in the interest of the man, personally, but instead is in the corporate, money-making interest of those running around in the man's name for profit.

    This debate should be about who will gain (like those people hiding Ron Paul's Rothbardian cute of libertarianism fir the sake of Rand's candidacy). This is not about a particular theory on rights (for sale this summer!?).

    1. RP is keenly aware of all of this, even Tom Woods can't post on facebook right now without someone bringin up the issue. Especially since the newsletter controversy, you have to think that RP is taking an active interest in anything that goes on in his name, and if someone filed suit (or a complaint in this case) in his name, you better believe he consented to it. Also, I think that may be the motivation for trying to get, as wenzel says, there's a lot on the site that lends the casual observer to believe that RP is in fact operating the site. They're selling t-shirts with his face on it, for instance.

    2. Unless they recently changed their website banner, it clearly says at the top "Fan Site." So why would people think that this is the official Ron Paul web page? When I type in Ron Paul on Google I is 2nd on the list below So if the casual observer thinks that Ron Paul is a fan of himself, then perhaps you would have a point, and those observers would be idiots.

  19. Clearing up all the muddle in IP would be a great help at this stage.

    1. Indeed. I'd be hard pressed to find a comment here that didn't in the same paragraph make both perfect arguments and the shitttttt-lousiest arguments I've ever heard right next to them.

  20. That was a poor argument, Wenzel. As someone has previously stated:
    "great chance for someone to grab the baton from RW as the most principled voice in the movement"

    I'm just thankful that hardly anyone is apparently agreeing with you.

  21. "A google search for "Ron Paul" results in the web address showing up on the first page of search results."

    Your comment makes it sound like the site owners have placed their site at the top of the search in order to impersonate Ron Paul. The site's ranking is not subject to the whim of the site owners. Google's algorithms determine site rankings based upon a number of factors, popularity, cross-links, content, etc. Of course, the name "RonPaul" in the URL affects the rank but it isn't the only factor.

    Would your argument stand if was ranked 200,000 in a search for Ron Paul?

    I think it would be tough to prove your other point, that the web owners are attempting to mislead people. The site says that it is a "fan site" all over the place, including the logo. Are they making money from Dr. Paul's name? It looks that way. Should that be illegal in a libertarian society? I'm not so sure.

    I appreciate your argument Mr. Wenzel. I have been waiting to hear arguments either for or against Dr. Paul's action. I'm not convinced you are correct. However, my mind is open.


  22. 'misleading' is not t.he same as fraud, theft, or breaking of reciprocal contracts. You have a lot of failures in your logic over IP and CR and horrendous in your examples. Ron should come to an agreement with the domain owner and purchase the the domain name or just use a different variation such, etc.

    1. I think an earlier commenters response applies here. The debate is way over your head. Wenzel is saying that if all rights are designed they do not have to be designed only to protect against fraud by contract. Thus, your argument against "misleading" behavior doesn't apply, it is best to think of it as "identity theft," as another commneter pointed out. Your contract analysis doesn't hold.

  23. Ron Paul uses the State to aggress on someone's property rights? Maybe Rand hasn't fallen far from the tree.

    I love ya Wenzel, but you and Dr. Paul are all wet on this one.

  24. They should turn over the website out of respect for Dr. Paul,

    I wonder how much money they made over the years profiting off of RP's name, selling merchandise, etc.

    I wonder how much they stand to lose. If there was no money at stake, why wouldnt they simply give Dr. Paul his domains, and buy a new domain like or something like that.

    1. Yeah, i'm sure it did Ron Paul a lot of harm to have fan sites out there.

      And i also wonder how much money Ron Paul has made over the decades from supporters and taxpayers. Especially in the last 2 years. I've heard he gave Jesse Benton a 1.1 million dollar salary. He much has he himself made off of people?

      Don't start talking about people profiting off of other people's work.

  25. I think freedom of speech is at stake here and so I do not support Ron Paul's position.

    Here is my response:

    1. asdf,

      You are getting more at the heart of the issue with DNS and freedom of speech. And with new top level domains coming out this is a futile exercise for Dr. Paul anyway. For those who are in-favor of the ability to seize a domain name; they are gravely overlooking important technical components of the Internet that impact freedom of speech.

      This is a prime example why projects like NameCoin need to be further developed so that DNS is decentralized away from ICANN. Then the domain name would be decentralized and censorship-resistant being subject to the laws of mathematics and cryptography instead of the laws of men.

      In this instance and in my opinion, Dr. Paul's use of intimidation and the threat of violence is extremely disappointing and a blot on his moral character. He calls for protecting a free and open Internet and yet contradicts that very notion with his actions. I suppose even Frodo fell to the Ring's power in the end.

      If Dr. Paul has taken overt steps towards and is willing to use violence against those that, for years, published political speech that was favorable towards him then just imagine what type of violence Dr. Paul may use against those who publish political speech that is unfavorable towards him.

      George W. Bush tried to do this to Zack Exley. Both Bill and Hilary Clinton did this to others. And many celebrities are doing it also. But that does not make it right, ethical or moral.

    2. So you would be in favor of others using the term Trace Mayer Bitcoin News etc.?

  26. This is anonymous from 2:33 PM. I continue to see commenters attack Wenzel from a natural rights point of view, when he says he does not recognize natural rights.

    Your arguments don't make any sense unless you attack that foundational point being made by Wenzel. Geez, is the libertarian movement filled with that many clueless, who don't know how to argue?

    Oh yeah, I forgot, there are a bunch of Kinsella groupies who think you can steal someone's intellectual work because you can't touch it.

    1. He makes a claim to argue from some moral relativist approach and then runs away from defending that and just assumes it. They are right to come back with a natural rights approach because it is the best theory out there.

    2. "I continue to see commenters attack Wenzel from a natural rights point of view, when he says he does not recognize natural rights."

      This argument has been answered. If he concludes B as a result of A, without logically proving A, then the argument is flawed or void until such time as A has been proven to be true. It's not our problem that he doesn't think this platform is proper to make this argument.

      "Oh yeah, I forgot, there are a bunch of Kinsella groupies who think you can steal someone's intellectual work because you can't touch it."

      You want to talk logical arguments making sense?
      The argument above is ad hominem (people who agree with Kinsella are "groupies" rather than people who agree because he is RIGHT), and aside from that you have failed to logically argue why they are WRONG, while insinuating that they are.

    3. You don't understand an ad hominem attack. Anonymous is saying there are a bunch of Kinsella groupies. This is a fact. Anonymous isn't saying A+B =Z because there are Kinsella groupies.

      This pretty much puts you in the clueless Kinsella groupies category.

  27. RW's only valid point has to do with fraud. If owners were fraudulently passing themselves off as THE Ron Paul (famous politician from Texas), they would be committing fraud.

    But the only people with standing would be those defrauded, NOT Ron Paul. Clearly Ron Paul would not be defrauded since he knows he doesn't run that site. He has no claim against them on grounds of fraud. Only a defrauded customer has a claim.

    And yet, the accusation of fraud doesn't appear to be true about the site in question. I just went there for the first time, and it says clearly "Fan Site" in the header. I don't know if that's a recent addition or not since I've never been there before. But can someone with evidence please comment on whether has ever tried to pass itself off fraudulently as being officially affiliated with the man himself? If so, then those defrauded customers (meaning those who actually paid money for products they were falsely led to believe were from RP - texas congressman) should file charges. Still, RP has no standing.

    RW got serious points in my book for his speech at the NY Fed. My enthusiasm has waned since upon hearing his podcast. When he's got friends on, he's very agreeable. When he's got others on, he employs a very petty and transparent "gotcha" style of setup that is unnecessarily antagonistic and often laughably hyperbolic (e.g., his "gotcha" of Stephen Molyeneaux over using the term "profit" in the way that nearly ALL laypeople are familiar with).

    Still, I held out mild hope for the upcoming debate with Kinsella. I'm solidly convinced by Kinsella's anti-IP arguments, but was open to the possibility Wenzel would bring some new arguments to the table that would be worthy of consideration. This post about has pretty much ended that anticipation. Kinsella is wasting his time.

    1. You're an idiot. Wenzel never mentions fraud. That only limits debate in terms of a natural rights theory, which Wenzel rejects.

      If Wenzel argues that all rights are "designed" and a society says you can't mislead by naming a site in a manner that misdirects traffic to you, you need to address that point, which neither you, nor any other of the commenters so far have done.

      Wenzel's point is way over your head.

    2. I beg to differ sir. The question at hand is if an individual who has been laboring on this clearly identified "fansite" would justified in defending himself should ron paul and the State storm in with force to commandeer product of his entrepreneurship. All because RP doesn't want to buy at the "ASK" in order to obtain the domain name on the free market. I'm willing to bet that not too much flies "over the head" of the commenters 'round here...

    3. How are commenters supposed to attack the "designed" rights theory on which Wenzel is basing his argument when Wenzel has yet to explain the theory? Your comment might be less rude had you considered that first.

    4. The point is, though, that commenters are attacking Wenzel's argument as though Wenzel is applying natural rights theory, when he clearly states he is not.

      And if by "designed" rights Wenzel means a common sense interpretation of "design," then Wenzel may have a point that all the commenters are missing, since there are no natural rights and only "designed," why couldn't you have a designed right that says you can't mislead with a web site? Which Wenzel says are pretty close to World Intellectual Property Organization rules?

    5. We are attacking Wenzel's argument in so far as he has PRESENTED them. If he does not present a substantial argument that supposedly underlies his theory, it is as if the argument simply does not exist.

      If he does not want his *presented* arguments to be judged, he should not make the post at all.

      Furthermore, i find it laughable that just because Wenzel claims he has an anti-IP and anti-natural rights argument that he will explain at a later time, some people simply assume that even if he does present them, they would prove to be logically justified arguments that would refute his opponents.
      You people are already showing confirmation bias.

    6. BTW, for those reading my initial comment, when do I appeal to "natural rights" or assume RW is? Is "misleading", a term Wenzel clearly uses, not the same as "fraud"? Is "fraud" only a relevant term if natural rights are true? In a system of "designed rights" (designed by whom I wonder?), is fraud not an act of aggression, but "misleading" is?

      And again, could someone please provide evidence that owners are misleading anyone?

  28. I'm speculating here, but this complaint/claim could be a byproduct of certain publishing agreements (defense of copyright responsibility), speaking tour booking agencies, or even a requirement for certain kinds of potential employment.

    The system as it stands places a great deal of emphasis on maintaining the integrity of one's brand -- especially if that brand is to be acquired or licensed by another party.

    Welcome back to the productive sector Ron!

  29. Not surprising that Ron Paul would do this, or has everyone already forgotten about the "Chinaman Jon Huntsman" debacle where Ron Paul attempted to use trademark law to figure out who was behind the video? Ron Paul tried to use IP law to unmask anonymous dissenters. Great use of the State, Mr. Paul. Such a shame.

  30. I'm not sure I agree with Wenzel on his IP view, but he is being consistent and sticking to his principles. The controversy is just him applying his view in a practical application. Those who are attacking Wenzel for not being principled are way off.

    His debate with Kinsella is going to be interesting.

  31. One thing I like about Wenzel is that he posts what he believes and doesn't care where he gets flack from. He must have known he was going to get flack on this one, but he still posted it.

    I would rather have that then someone who just spouts the party line. Also, it is interesting that he is going against natural rights, which is a Murray Rothbard view. Wenzel isn't a cultist. If I am counting correctly, Wenzel has at least twice gone deeply against a Rothbardian view. First on entrepreneurship and now on natural rights. These aren't side points. Wenzel seems to be a big fan of Rothbard, but if he views something in a different way, he doesn't seem to shy away from saying so.

    Wenzel needs to elaborate on both entrepreneurship and natural rights and how his view differs from Rothbard, but calling him a cult promoter doesn't fit what he is doing.

    1. Good points. I am a subscriber to his EPJ Daily Alert and it seems he also has a definition of money supply that is different than Rothbard's. That makes three important points where he differs with Rothbard.

      Like you I wish Wenzel would elaborate more on these points in writing.

  32. Mr. Wenzel, you are using two different requirements for the two different cases.

    You state:
    "The plumber wouldn't be TRYING to mislead." (my emphasis)
    and later state:
    "[] IS very misleading." (my emphasis)

    So let's say we pick the latter requirement in choosing whether the so-called "designed rights" are proper. In the first case, it doesn't matter whether the plumber is trying to mislead or not. If he misleads individuals, then he doesn't have legitimate rights. Taken to its logical conclusion, I would think that as long as one individual exists that has been misled, the plumber would not have legitimate rights to do what he did.

    Let's say we pick the former as a requirement. Then in the case of, it doesn't matter whether the site owners -actually- misled anyone. It matters whether they -intended- to mislead anyone or not. Absent evidence that they did intentionally choose the name to mislead others, there would be no case against them. They should be presumed innocent until proven guilty. But of course, there is no true way of knowing someone's intentions. There is all sorts of reasoning that an individual could have in choosing a specific action. In fact, they could state they had one end in mind, but their end could really be something else. So there is no way to absolutely prove someone has specific intentions. Your argument would fail in this case as well to prosecute

    Ron Paul has been a beacon for liberty but he is a human being and is flawed himself. He is clearly incorrect in this situation if you look at it from a Rothbardian point of view. His actions are also incorrect from your point of view if #1 is your requirement, because intentions are impossible to prove. If #2 is your requirement, Ron Paul's actions are fine, but I think there are a number of situations even you would find logically absurd as I have demonstrated above. Even people named "Ron Paul" would have to give up the site to former Congressman Ron Paul. Of course, if you don't think that's absurd, your argument remains intact.

    Now, personally, I think Ron Paul should have just asked them peacefully to give him the domain name. I also think the website owners should have announced they were moving to new domain names and given the current ones to Ron Paul. But I do not think Paul has the right to use violence in a situation like this.

    1. Bharat read the World Intellectual Property Organization rules, they answer all your questions. It appears that RW is just applying those rules and definitions, which explain how to get out of the box you create.

    2. Link or quote? I am not interested in spending time searching through their rules.

      And yes, RW is applying those rules to a libertarian society. I am simply saying that RW is being inconsistent in applying those rules, and according to his logic, either 1) Ron Paul is still wrong, or 2) the rules lead to some absurd situations such as a plumber with Ron Paul's name not being allowed to own the website because Ron Paul is more famous and he may have intentionally OR unintentionally misled others.

    3. Great response you lazy bastard. If you would have taken the time to go to World Intellectual Property Organization site you would realize you are talking totally out of your ass, since it says the exact opposite of what you think it says.

    4. But I did...visit their website...

      I mean, look who's speaking, you're too lazy to give a link or quote them. I'll admit my skimming skills aren't too great, I wasn't able to find the information I was looking for within 2 minutes so I decided to ask you.

    5. The Cleaner,

      Bharat's post has nothing to do with the current rules of the WIPO. He is addressing the criteria set forth by Wenzel, whereby Wenzel outlines the theoretical constraints on a first come, first serve domain registration in a "designed-rights", private property society. Specifically, Bharat is addressing a very subtle problem with Wenzel's argument, viz.

      1) In the first case, the criteria Wenzel uses to judge whether a domain is properly registered is whether the registrant has "attempted to mislead"
      2) In the second case, the criteria used to judge is whether the registrant has actually mislead

      His critique has nothing to do with the current governing regulations at WIPO. Your continued criticism that Bharat has not read the rules at WIPO misses the boat entirely.

    6. Edward, you are almost as dumb as Bharat.

      Wenzel says in his post that WIPO rules are rule he could live under, which means it is all about WIPO.

    7. That an otherwise rational conversation can so quickly devolve into name-calling never ceases to surprise me.

      Wenzel's argument is not predicated upon WIPO. Indeed, the legitimacy of WIPO in a private property society is the very thing under debate. Wenzel concludes that WIPO's rules are just in a private property society BECAUSE THEY CONFORM TO THE CONDITIONS HE LAYS OUT. NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND.

      "I would have no problem living in such a society [a society in which 'web addresses are acknowledged on a first to register basis ... ']---and current web registration law [WIPO] appears to be generally along these lines .

      There is a subtle, but important (for this current debate), logical distinction between the two positions.

  33. OK, I've had it up to HERE with all you "Anonymous" people!!!!!
    Jeezuz, give yourselves SOME kind of name so I can suss out who's freekin' who!!!
    Anon 2:33 Anon 4:22 etc etc . What a lot of CRAP!! Just give yourself SOME kind of tag. Christ! do you think you can I.D. me, as a person from my name here (Capn' Mike)?
    OK, if one of you guys identifies me I will be like, totally CREEPED out. So give it a try!

    1. It's interesting you are crying out for an ID from anonymous posters and yet at the same time want to prevent Ron Paul from claiming, which is being used by non_Ron Paulers to promote Ron Paul gear.

    2. i second that cap...

    3. This is exactly the kind of debate where you shouldn't be putting an ID on your posting. If you have a business and comment on this thread without as much anonymity as you can muster, you're taking a big risk.

      Even though I'm on Robert's side in this discussion, I also recognize that the government screws up IP law -- especially patent law. The patent office is a rubber-stamp organization that mostly just rubber-stamps patents and lets the courts figure it out (with a minimum price tag of 7 figures). Anyone who builds software is violating patents -- patents that should have never been granted in the first place.

      Using consistant pseudonyms here would make it easier to trace your comments and have them fed back to you on the stand in a courtroom.

    4. @ Anonymous,

      Apparently you don't understand very clear differences.
      Ron Paul wants to take a domain currently held by others.
      Capn Mike just wants to know who the hell he is talking to so communication becomes easier (in other words, he does not want to take anything from anyone).

      Way to show your comprehension skills with such a stupid strawman argument.

  34. Wenzel is making a positive claim about whether or not domain names can be registered improperly in a private property society. My criticism of his claim need not rehash any arguments about natural vs designed rights. Indeed, I'm happy to assume he is correct in his assertion that there are no natural rights, only designed rights.

    Wenzel's claim is that certain domain names can be improperly registered in a private property society and thus can be forcibly returned to their proper owners. For the sake of argument, I'll grant this is acceptable within a libertarian society.

    How, then, can we tell whether a domain registrant has improperly registered a domain? If I read Wenzel correctly, it is if the owner has attempted to mislead people.

    I don't believe Wenzel has sufficiently demonstrated this assertion.

    He says that shows up first in a google search. This is not evidence at all that the owners are attempting to mislead. The reason their page is first on google is a testamant to their hard work promoting their site, the amount of content relating to Ron Paul, linkbacks to their pages, and a myriad of other factors that affect the google algorithm. Ultimately, however, Google controls who is ranked where. This example doesn't stand up to critical scrutiny as evidence that the registrants attempted to mislead.

    Wenzel then argues that in a private property society, domain registrations should be on a "first to register basis unless it is outright misleading registration, without the registrar having any other reason to hold the address other than to mislead."

    Does the registrar / site owner of have a reason to hold other than to mislead? Sure they do. They've been promoting Ron Paul for a decade. They are fans. They are supporting Ron Paul, spreading his message, etc. How many other reasons does a registrar need? (Indeed, Wenzel's assertion suggests that a registrant need only one reason, other than to mislead, to hold the domain to be considered properly registered.)

    Yet, by Wenzel's criteria, even outright critics of Ron Paul could "have [a] reason to hold the address," i.e. critique. Critique is a reason. The owners of could be hostile and yet still could have properly registered the site according to Wenzel.

    Clearly the theory needs some work before we can conclude that Paul is justified in using force to return the site to his person.

    1. is 2nd on my search results, 2nd to the Campaign for Liberty website. So I guess it depends on who is doing the search. That being said, the banner at the top of the page clearly says "Fan Site." Now.. all we have to do is figure out how long it has had "Fan Site" at the top of the webpage. But lets just say they recently added that. Unless it can be proven that they are purposely misleading people, I think its a non issue. I go to a website that is selling Ron Paul posters and shirts and I purchase one of them thinking that the site is owned by Ron Paul, how am I being ripped off? Because I thought my money was going to go to Ron Paul? Shouldn't I do my own due-diligence before spending my money? Websites that sell merchandise should have return policies, and if people start to discover that their money isn't going to Ron Paul they can return their products and the site owner now has an incentive to put a disclaimer at the top of the site. (Fan Site)

    2. Geezuz, can't you comprehend!

      Wenzel's point is not simply what is sold on the web sites but that when people search for "Ron Paul" the web site comes up on the front page which will drive traffic to that site versus a true Ron Paul page.

      It is not different, as he points out, from launching a steakhouse called Abe's Steakhouse, when there is already a famous Abe's Steakhouse in a town.

      It is done to misdirect people from what they are really looking for by someone who has not spent the time, years and effort that Ron Paul has to build up his reputation.

      The commenters here need to get a grip. The current owners of are benefiting from the years of hard work Ron Paul has put in, by using a domain name they know will show up on the first page of searches engines when people are searching to find out about the real Ron Paul. It is sleazy and dishonest.

      I say Ron go get them!!

    3. "The current owners of are benefiting from the years of hard work Ron Paul has put in, by using a domain name they know will show up on the first page of searches engines when people are searching to find out about the real Ron Paul."

      Would your argument stand if was ranked 201,354th in google instead of being on the first page? Would the owners still be "using a domain name they know will show up on the first page of searches"?

      What about What if the owners of were sophisticated internet businesspeople who knew how to get their page on to the top of Google's search engine? When someone typed in "Ron Paul," what if showed up at the top of the page. Would Ron Paul have a legitimate libertarian claim to expropriate as well?

      If not, given your position, why not?

  35. When was purchased it came under law governed by ICANN.
    There is no way avoiding this FACT even if one was in ignorance of the
    law at the time of the domain purchase.

    Read the complaint. Tim Martin is seeking undue enrichment, clearly, from the use of Ron Paul’s name. It really is that simple.

    When you register a domain, in accordance with ICANN policies, you
    warrant that you’re not infringing on the rights of a third party and
    also agree to arbitration if a third party submits a claim. This
    arbitration process is outlined in what’s called the Uniform Domain-Name
    Dispute-Resolution Policy, or UDRP, and includes certain criteria such
    as trademark infringement and “bad faith”, both of which RP seems to be
    focusing on in his UDRP complaint. The WIPO, a UN agency, is one of
    several organizations authorized by ICANN to offer this arbitration
    service for a fee.

    Ron Paul is the owner of RON PAUL U.S. trademark. Ron Paul has
    acquired rights in the mark by virtue of it’s use within the United
    States, including a large volume of sales of Dr. Paul’s books.
    The RON PAUL mark has achieved a secondary meaning associated with Ron
    Paul sufficient to establish common law trademark rights. RON PAUL has
    long been associated with Dr. Paul’s books, articles, public
    appearances, and political commentary.”

    On the 7th page of Ron Paul’s complaint. The fun part begins on the 7th page:

    If it’s true that he owns the trademark RON PAUL,
    he absolutely has the right to take back Do you think that
    if someone happened to buy before walmart had a chance to
    get it that they wouldn’t be able to get it back?

    And for those that are complaining about this whole UN thing.

    Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) is the standard
    international (since domains and .com can be purchased from anyone
    around the globe) means of re-acquiring domain names that business and
    individuals own trademark to. The fact that they are associated with the
    UN is a mute point.

    Name me another organization that works to give brand owners back the ownership of the domain associated with their brand.

    As a graphic and web designer, I am familiar with UDRP and had to
    submit a request with them for a client that needed a website back that
    they held the trademark rights to. So am I somehow evil for working with
    a group that is associated with the UN?

    In fact, a quick google search came up with this:

    “The UDRP is followed by ALL REGISTRARS of the following generic
    top-level domain (gTLD) names: .aero, .asia, .biz., .cat, .COM, .coop,
    .info, .jobs, .mobi, .museum, .name, .net, .org, .pro, .tel, .travel and
    .xxx. The UDRP has been adopted by all accredited gTLD domain-name
    registrars. Thus the UDRP is incorporated into every gTLD domain name
    Registration Agreement, which is the agreement between the accredited
    registrar and the registrant, providing for registration of a domain
    name. ”

    Emphasis added to ALL REGISTRARS and .COM.

    And as far as I can tell, there are no alternatives to using UDRP to
    recover domains names in disputes such as this. So to push back on the
    use of UDRP as somehow against free market or against Ron Paul’s
    character or integrity is a disservice to the man and the legacy he’s
    given us.


    Obvious future result is obvious…
    If you are claiming to have bought the domain only to keep the
    “enemy” from buying it, and then turn around and try to squeeze
    $250,000.00 (down from $800,000) from Ron Paul for it you get what you

    Lew Rockwell Says They Were Originally Asking $800,0000 claims this is untrue

    1. Well said purldriver. The comments at this post are turning into two groups, those who are attacking Wenzel on an ad hominem basis and those who have a deeper understanding of the debate, you fall into the latter category.

    2. hate to break it to you guys, you're not seeing things on a deeper level than anyone else around here. If anything you have it backwards, rw's blog post was a puddle-deep dissapointment. let's take it to the first priciple, all the way down to the bottom of the ocean. can you get deeper than that? Who is the aggressor here?

      see trace mayer's comment above...

    3. Purldiver siad: "If it’s true that [Ron Paul] owns the trademark RON PAUL, he absolutely has the right to take back "

      Whether Ron Paul owns the trademark RON PAUL or the extent to which trademarks are permissible in a private property society (a libertarian society) IS THE VERY ISSUE up for discussion (The "if" statement in your argument.) You need to sufficiently demonstrate these points before you'll convince anyone of your conclusion.

      Your appeal to the fact that the domain is governed by ICANN sidesteps this issue. Astute followers of this controversy are well aware of the current law. The question is whether Ron Paul is justified to appeal to this law given his philosophy of libertarianism and the non-aggression axiom. The question, therefore, as Wenzel has addressed, is whether domains can be revoked by force and under what circumstances.

  36. 1. If Ron Paul wanted the address, he should have purchased it a long time ago before he was popular. One cannot be free market only when it suits them.

    2. The entrepreneurs who recognized the opportunity, bought the name they thought might be profitable. Though it was legal for them to do it, it was unethical as they have profited off the back of Ron Paul. I find it funny one of the site bemoaning they think Ron Paul should be happy with their offer. Many comments on the site express unhappiness with the site. This bodes bad for business but, they were fools to expect a different outcome.

    So, two wrongs don't make a right.

    It would be in both best interest to come to a mutually beneficial agreement.

    If they cannot come to one, he would be well served to prevent them from using his property. That property is his likeness as he was born with it. Especially, after the fiasco over the newsletters.

  37. Ron Paul is wrong.
    Robert Wenzel is wrong.

    Sad to see.

    1. Great and powerful logic. Let me try it:

      You are wrong about Robert Wenzel and Ron Paul.

  38. Setting aside the "rights" debate, I assume these sites promoted Paul and his campaigns for President. They responded with their time, money and sweat when Paul asked for aid when he needed it. Now, just because as Rockwell says he is a private citizen, (read: no longer needs the campaign support) he wants the sites, it shows much ingratitude.

    As far as Wenzel's statement: Thus, since I believe all "rights" are designed rather than natural, I could see a Private Property Society emerging where web addresses are acknowledged on a first to register basis unless it is outright misleading registration, without the registrar having any other reason to hold the address other than to mislead.

    This is no insight here, it's simply his opinion without any justification. Perhaps his book would provide more detail, until then I say that I and everyone else can see private property society developing differently. I also second the comment that these big name libertarians do stray from principles on occasion. Maybe thats just human nature.

    1. provided free advertising and promotion for Dr. Paul. What Ron Paul paid that crook Jesse Benton he could have bought 10x over. It's sad to see Ron Paul marketing himself, more than likely to boost the political status of his statist son Rand. Like someone else said earlier, perhaps Rand Paul didn't fall too far from the tree.

  39. If was ranked number one in Google (a testament, for example, to the site owners' SEO prowess), would Dr. Paul have a legitimate claim to this domain as well? Imagine if,,,, etc. all appeared on the first page of every major search engine. Would Ron Paul have a claim in a private property society to each of these domains? If not, why not?

  40. has always clearly stated that is a "fan site", right in the header of the site. They are not trying to mislead anyone. If you can read you can figure out it is not the official page of Ron Paul.

  41. has always stated it is a fansite and not the official Ron Paul website. They have never misled anyone.

  42. "He may not believe that the UN should exist or be an enforcing body, but if they are, that is the body he must appeal to. What is his alternative, to call the local sheriff in the county he lives in?"

    In other words, it's all well and good to speak and work against the state, until the state can get you something you want easier than it would be to get it on your own. When the state makes up rights that you want, it's great; when it makes up rights that you disagree with, then it's authoritarian and totalitarian and anti-libertarian, and whatever else. If you follow Wenzel's opinions on intellectual property, then this sort of argument is not contradictory at all.