Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 20th Nov 2013 18:07 UTC
Legal

On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee is scheduled to consider legislation aimed at reining in abusive patent litigation. But one of the bill's most important provisions, designed to make it easier to nix low-quality software patents, will be left on the cutting room floor. That provision was the victim of an aggressive lobbying campaign by patent-rich software companies such as IBM and Microsoft.

These companies also happen to have the largest lobbying corruption budgets. This is never going to change.

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Hang on a second...
by kwan_e on Wed 20th Nov 2013 22:57 UTC
kwan_e
Member since:
2007-02-18

Last week, IBM escalated its campaign against expanding the CBM program. An IBM spokesman told Politico, "While we support what Mr. Goodlatte’s trying to do on trolls, if the CBM is included, we’d be forced to oppose the bill."


Why should it matter to the government if IBM would be forced to oppose the bill? Is IBM a senator now?

Reply Score: 5

RE: Hang on a second...
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 20th Nov 2013 22:59 in reply to "Hang on a second..."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

"...we'd be forced to oppose the bill, and cut funding on your or your party's campaign coming elections, redirecting said funds to your rival instead."

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE: Hang on a second...
by saso on Wed 20th Nov 2013 23:30 in reply to "Hang on a second..."
saso Member since:
2007-04-18

Why should it matter to the government if IBM would be forced to oppose the bill? Is IBM a senator now?

Yes, I would see how intuitively a person not familiar with US politics would think this, but since in America money equals speech (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buckley_v._Valeo), political life has become so centered on campaign contributions that pretty much anything having to do with the spirit of democracy has been erased. Your surprise here is quite understandable, as anywhere else in the world people still recognize this as blatant bribery (and many in America still do as well, which is why significant amounts of money are spent on keeping this little tidbit off of the evening cable news cast).

Edited 2013-11-20 23:30 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Hang on a second...
by kwan_e on Thu 21st Nov 2013 01:03 in reply to "RE: Hang on a second..."
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

I'm not surprised that it happened. I'm surprised it was said so openly, and it is openly understood that campaign bribery is what they meant by it. I'm further surprised that there's no real backlash against politicians cowering in the face of such blatant threat and bribery.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE: Hang on a second...
by blitze on Thu 21st Nov 2013 01:45 in reply to "Hang on a second..."
blitze Member since:
2006-09-15

Why should it matter to the government if IBM would be forced to oppose the bill? Is IBM a senator now? [/q]

Given the state of Politics in the West, why not have IBM and other corporations elected representatives. Cut out the middle man and save in bribes, cough, I mean campaign contributions.

Nothing like a good honest government providing governance for the benefit of society as a whole....

I go now to a corner and weep for humanity.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Hang on a second...
by Soulbender on Thu 21st Nov 2013 05:15 in reply to "Hang on a second..."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Why should it matter to the government if IBM would be forced to oppose the bill?


Because it would mean that IBM would stop bribing senators. Oh wait, sorry, did I say bribe? I mean "support their campaigns" because we all know that lobbying is absolutely not, in any way at all, legalized corruption.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Hang on a second...
by lucas_maximus on Thu 21st Nov 2013 09:53 in reply to "RE: Hang on a second..."
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

However lobbying is probably the only way that someone outside of politics (since it is now a career) is likely to change how the system works.

Unfortunately it is tied to money, which is why the system is broke.

Edited 2013-11-21 09:54 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3