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Why Oh Why Are We Ruled by These Morons?

Hoisted from Comments: Dean Baker on Sources of Today's Great Fortunes

Dean Baker on the sources of today's great fortunes: luck, talent, workaholism--but most of all intellectual property protection.

He says:

Brad DeLong's Semi-Daily Journal: Luck vs. Talent vs. Workaholism: Luck, talent, industriousness? Hey, how about good old-fashioned protectionism? How much moey would Bill Gates have if the government didn't arrest people who made and distributed copies of Windows without his permission.

We can call it "copyright," but this word isn't holy water that can turn a monopoly into a competitive market. Copyright is a government granted monopoly that has allowed some people to get very rich. If economics focused on where the money is, we would have alot more people trying to devise more efficient mechanisms to foster innovation and creative work, and fewer people worrying about modest tariffs on imported shirts.