Saturday, December 22, 2012

UK Copyright Law to be Reformed in 2013: Government in the United Kingdom to Follow Hargreaves Review and Modernize Copyright Law, Permit Fair Dealing, Spur Innovation and Boost the Economy

The applicable response to the Hargreaves Review by Her Majesty's Government is found in Modernising Copyright: A modern, robust and flexible framework: Government response to consultation on copyright exceptions and clarifying copyright law, which writes:
"The Government will publish draft legislation for technical review in 2013. It intends to introduce the measures in the smallest possible number of statutory instruments to minimise disruption to stakeholders, make best use of Parliamentary time and ensure that the revised system is implemented in a clear and consistent manner. The intention is that measures will come into force in October 2013.
In line with the impact assessments for these measures, the Government will also publish an evaluation strategy that will set out how the Government intends to measure the impact of the policy. There will be a formal post-implementation review to review the benefits and costs of the reforms and see whether further change is needed."

Elizabeth Gibney at Times Higher Education in
Copyright changes 'should boost growth'

Mark Sweney at The Guardian in
UK copyright laws to be freed up and parody laws relaxed

Ben Kersey at the Verge in
UK copyright reforms will finally legalize private copying of content for personal use

Olivia Solon at Wired in
Government relaxes copyright framework to encourage innovation

Ewan Spence, hat tip for the story, has a short piece at Forbes in
Finally It's Going To Be Legal To Rip Your CD In The UK,
writing inter alia:
"Following on from the Hargreaves Review into UK copyright law, exceptions will be made in copyright law to allow individuals to copy works for personal use."
A host of other changes will be made as well to bring copyright law in the United Kingdom into the 21st century.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Internet of Things -- Devices Talking to One Another -- is Coming of Age in the Coming Year

The Internet of Things -- Devices Talking to One Another -- is coming of age in 2013 according to Clive Thompson at Wired Opinion in No Longer Vaporware: The Internet of Things Is Finally Talking.

Top 10 Strategic Tech Trends 2013 Topped by Mobile Device Battles

Eric Savitz at Forbes has the story in Gartner: Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends For 2013.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Mobile Phone Smartphone Industry Dominated by Monopolists

Work for a living?
No. "OWN the value chain."

We heard that a news reporter looking for a story allegedly once asked the late millionaire playboy, talented photographer and visionary art collector Gunter Sachs, who inherited a family automobile-based fortune and married movie star Brigitte Bardot, what he was "working on" at that moment.

Sachs allegedly replied in serious humor that he was "working" on nothing, because, as he had said, " you can't earn anything "working" ". And that is undoubtedly true, because we know a lot of working people who in fact earn very little, while those who earn the most do so by "not working", at least, not in the normal meaning of the term.

A modern version of Sachs might for example "do patents".

As they say at Matt Asay at The Register,
Apple and Samsung mobile monsters: 'We only eat RAW CASH'.

Also take a look at Asay's earlier writing:
Apple's patent insanity infects Silicon Valley: Patent trolls go nuclear

Facebook Subsidiary Instagram in Gigantic Attempted (?) IP Rights Grab of User Photos: Users Flocking to Instagram Alternatives

Facebook's Instagram in its new terms of service is apparently continuing a tradition, emphasized e.g. at the Apple firm, which is to rip off gullible consumers as much as possible. Jenna Wortham has the story at the New York Times in Facebook Responds to Anger Over Proposed Instagram Change.

The fact is that Instagram changed its terms of service effective January 16, 2013, so that arguably -- based on those terms -- user photos could be used by the company free of charge for advertising purposes. Savvy users have of course raised a firestorm of protest and many are shifting to alternative services.

The result of these protests and massive user concern is that the legalese in the terms of service is allegedly to be changed so that user photos can not used by Instagram for free in their advertising, which appears to this commentator to be clearly illegal anyway, even if the terms of service would provide for it.

Such broad, blanket appropriations of rights are sham contracts imposed upon users unilaterally for one party's benefit and should not be enforceable.

One way to tell companies that this kind of theft of intellectual property will not be tolerated is to move to alternative services.

See for example Craig Kanalley at the Huffington Post in
Instagram Alternatives: 11 Photo-Sharing Apps To Consider In Light Of New Terms Of Service.

This entire debacle should alert all Internet users to the reality that commercial enterprises are out there to make money for themselves -- at USER cost. People who use the Internet should stop bowing to all the ridiculous garble and hype thrown at them by the hawkers and should become better informed about what is actually going on in the real world.

The people who run these companies are not -- as often touted by the sometimes clueless mainstream press -- heroes or even "geniuses". They are common merchants viz. traders hawking their wares for personal and company profit. Consumers should view those people accordingly. Caveat emptor.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Trademarks by State Predict Voting in U.S. Presidential Elections : An Amazing Result

The Presidential Election Map for 2012 is virtually identical to the 2008 Presidential Election Map and both show the same veritably near correlation to trademarks by State.

Here is the 2012 Presidential Election Map at The Economisit -- go there for more information and data:

Here is our posting from 2008 at Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy and How Trademarks Predict Voting in Presidential Elections : The Amazing Result

The U.S. Department of Commerce
has just issued
its report on
"Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy".

Everyone will be commenting on that report but we found a unique Presidential-election-related characteristic in one of the maps in that report, Map 2: Trademark-Intensive Industries' Share of Covered Employment by State, 2010:

Now compare that map to the division of the United States into red and blue States in the Presidential Election 2008 (map via

Now that is a pretty good match.

So what do trademark-intensive industries share in common with voting behavior in Presidential elections?

The answer is pretty clear is it not?

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Has Apple Invented ANYTHING of Note is a Legitimate Question while Apple Samsung Patent Wars Continue in Koh Court:

Paul Elias has the story at Boston Globe's in Judge aims to resolve Apple-Samsung legal dispute. Does Koh have a clue? We doubt it.

Tech-savvy people like LawPundit are very unhappy with the Apple firm's claims that Apple allegedly invented things that actually OTHER people invented, so make sure you see THIS YouTube video -- ESSENTIAL! The video is not from us.

Has Apple Really Ever Invented Anything?
YouTube video by razetheworld

See also:

Apple haven't invented anything
Jean-Louis Gassée at the Guardian

What did Apple invent? Nothing.

What Did Apple Really Invent? (9 pics) by Xaniel at

We were at Stanford Law School in Silicon Valley before the seven-headed hydra Apple company saw the light of day and we saw then the digital era in its evolutionary beginnings before many of the primary inventions and discoveries that led to the modern era of PCs, tablets, pads and smartphones were stolen and wrongfully "patented" as proprietary inventions by a host of companies trying to monopolize obvious modern technological progress and development for their selfish, greedy private benefit.

This nonsense will end only when the courts start to come down hard on a patent law system gone wildly astray.

Crossposted from LawPundit.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

U.S. Supreme Court to Rule Whether Human Genes are Patentable Under the American Constitution

"Are human genes patentable?"

How can the answer be anything but NO?

As posted by Dennis Crouch of Patently-O, Supreme Court has Granted Cert in the Myriad Case, Question: Are Human Genes Patentable.

Timothy B. Lee also has the story at Ars Technica in Supreme Court to rule on patentability of human genes.

We posted previously at LawPundit about this sordid legal farce of greedy companies trying to cash in commercially by claiming "patent" ownership of your genes and mine, as if the two halves of a cleaved orange would be an "invention"':
It is time for the U.S. Supreme Court to put an end to this nonsense.

The Almighty, whoever that might be or have been, in whatever shape or form, according to whatever religion you preach or not, "invented" the genes, whether via evolution, or creation, or intelligent design, whatever you believe,

it makes no difference,

but the inventor was NOT some human in a laboratory.

We hope the Supremes get that and make it clear to the recalcitrant judges on the Federal Circuit who think everything is a human invention worthy of monopolistic ownership for the profit of the few.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Man of Steel in 2013 Cinema : plus Superman Comic Book Animations Remastered : The Never-Ending Battle for True Justice : Comic Cartoon Villian Reminds of Going Thermonuclear on Android

Superman, The Man of Steel is returning to cinema in 2013 (see official trailer), and, perhaps in order to create market interest for the coming film, some remastered early Superman comic book animations have been released officially by Warner Bros.

Superman is a fictional hero virtually made for legal professionals.
Superman's comic book role was to fight
"the never-ending battle for true justice".
With emphasis on the true.

But in reality, Superman, like similarly IP proprietarily-caged Tarzan,
has long been an IP-endangered species, neglected by the masses,
and emasculated by "rights owners" for the profit of a few.
IP = intellectual property.
See Crypto-Neith, Holy Kryptonite and Superman and the Law.

Monopolistic IP law has over the years chilled interest in these cultural icons.

Andrew Webster at The Verge has a noteworthy posting and video at Watch this: Superman cartoons from the 1940s,
citing to Lauren Davis at -- "We Come From the Future" --
in You can now watch the 1940s Fleischer Studios Superman cartoons online:

As Davis writes:
"These films are in the public domain and have been available on the Internet Archive (as well as other corners of the Internet) for quite some time, but now Warner Bros. has officially released the remastered initial nine from its DVD collection on YouTube."
The above video finds the villain going "thermonuclear" on the world for private gain. Sound or look familiar? Sort of like the expressed idea that:
"I want to control the technology".

The real-life problem of society is that there are no Superman clones available to help society fight "the never-ending battle for true justice" against those trying to monopolize the world's riches for their exclusive personal profit.

See how many things you can find in these and similar comic book animations that patent trolls later "patented" via clueless patent offices as allegedly "non-obvious" "novel inventions".

Novel? NO. Obvious? YES. Obvious, years ago.

Look, for example, at displays and their controls.

Below is an example of a display screen with multi touch toggle controls, snipped from the first Superman video as based on the comic book, and having a screen that enables an embedded view of distant objects.
Hey this is in 1941.

Below is a display screen from the Superman video Electric Earthquake (1942) upon which an image is "bounced back" and forth from left to right:

One monopolist recently got a "billion-dollar" judgment for alleged violation of its claimed "invention" of a display screen "bounce-back" -- something apparently already envisioned by Superman animators more than half-a-century prior to that. Pretty obvious. Definitely not novel.

And so on.

P.S. We would be thankful to readers out there to send us links to comic book or movie credit animations or anything similar that you know about that shows pages being turned or flipped by film, photograph or clip art animation. Thank you. We are interested to find out how far back in time page-turning animation or flipping can be traced.

Crossposted from LawPundit.

BBC-Related Libel Case Expands to Twitter Tweets

Eric Pfanner has the Story at the New York Times
in Libel Case That Snared BBC Widens to Twitter.

There is substantial need in society to go after online libelers.
The Internet is not a law-free zone.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Typeface instead of Facebook? Absolutely Delightful Interactive Video from Pentagram - What Type Are You?

Enjoy this interactive video presentation from Pentagram at
What type are you?.
Absolutely delightful.
And make sure you look at the other types too.

Thanksgiving Day in America! Thoughts About the Economic Outlook for the European Union (EU), the Euro Zone, the USA, and the Rest of World: We Have a Lot to Be Thankful For

Happy Thanksgiving!

Everyone might consider sitting down today to make a list of all the things that each person has to be thankful for in our modern world -- and which nearly everyone takes for granted.

Compare your present status with those of people who populated our planet just 100 years ago.

The average life expectancy in the United States, for example, was 47.3 years of age in 1900-1902, according to the  Bureau of Census.

In 2012 life expectancy is estimated at 78.49 years, and a similar POSITIVE development is found in many of the countries of the world (see this link).

The truth is that most people today live in a "better" era, when compared to all of the previous ages of humanity. Of course, the world is still full of many wrongs, and many bad events, but things can be improved, and are improving.

Yes, I am thankful this Thanksgiving,
is a posting by Zachary Karabell at The Edgy Optimist
where he reports that:
  • U.S. housing is on the mend.
  • The euro zone crisis has receded. 
  • China is resuming its growth trajectory.
  • Unemployment has crested in the United States.
  • There is a consensus about what needs to be done.
  • People outside the media and the Beltway are going about their lives.
There is no denying that there all also many problems to be solved, but that is ALWAYS the case. On average, however, modern life is much better than it used to be, when Thomas Hobbes in the year 1651 wrote in the Leviathan that life was "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short". It surely was, in his era, for much of the population, and we still have this problem for some today too.

Thankfully, much has changed since the days of Hobbes, whose political philosophy is well worth reading to see how far we have advanced forward.

Hobbes, for example, opposed the "separation of powers" in government, a primary element of Constitutional legal systems of many political systems of modern Western Civilization today. Man has progressed since Hobbes.


Most of us can indeed be thankful on this "day of thanks" for our legal, economic and political system -- which permits us to live life as modern men and women, enjoying freedoms that were unprecedented throughout much of human history.

Things may not be "optimal", but they are "better" than they were.

We always like to point out that Henry VIII of England had SIX wives, six "Queens Consort" as it were, and NONE of them lived to be older than 50 years of age (Catherine of Aragon, his first wife, survived the longest).

How about being a "Queen Consort" in that era?
Just imagine what life was like in the society "below" the royals THEN.

Charles Dickens wrote about his Victorian era 300 years later, when things were already somewhat better in his day, but not much (Wikipedia):
"Dickens's novels were, among other things, works of social commentary. He was a fierce critic of the poverty and social stratification of Victorian society. In a New York address, he expressed his belief that, "Virtue shows quite as well in rags and patches as she does in purple and fine linen".[101] Dickens's second novel, Oliver Twist (1839), shocked readers with its images of poverty and crime: it destroyed middle class polemics about criminals, making any pretence to ignorance about what poverty entailed impossible.[102][103]
And if we go back to the Pharaohs, the mightiest rulers of ancient mankind, we find that their society was, for example, plagued by health problems in a world marked by short lifespans. See BBC History and Joyce M. Filer in Health Hazards and Cures in Ancient Egypt.

Things have improved since then, and they keep improving, even though progress is always a process of "two steps forward, and one step backward".

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Pinterest Photos Predicted U.S. Presidential Election Outcome

Susan Moeller has the story at "The Blog" of the Huffington Post in How Photos on Pinterest Predicted the Election.

The outcome of things is often "written on the walls" beforehand, if we just look.

It is a bit like Supreme Court oral arguments. If Justice Scalia asks a lot of questions of a given counsel, that side is not likely to get his vote.

U.S. Economy in Best Shape Since 1997 Says Bill McBride of Calculated Risk at Business Insider

Pioneer economics blogger Bill McBride at Calculated Risk has gotten it right for years now where others have been so very wrong, and warned of the housing bubble already in 2005, long before it happened, but he now tells us that things are on the upswing:
"I'm not a roaring bull, but looking forward, this is the best shape we've been in since '97."
Joe Weisenthal has the full exclusive story at the Business Insider Money Game in The Genius Who Invented Economics Blogging Reveals How He Got Everything Right And What's Coming Next.

McBride has posted his own comment to that article at Calculated Risk here.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Liberalization, Conservatism, Investment: China in Transition under Xi Jinping

Via J.J. Gould at the Atlantic
and the Washington Ideas Forum,
James Fallows speaks
with David Rubenstein,
co-founder of private equity giant Carlyle Group,
about investment in the People's Republic of China
in China's Power Transition
under Xi Jinping.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Planned Obsolescence and Modern Digital Devices

Planned obsolescence is an essential aspect of the economy.

A Cupertino company has shown it can be done successfully over decades,
exploiting a greatly flawed IP and patent law system, monopolising an intentionally "proprietary" system which attempts to exclude competition, and designing products for planned obsolescence.

Nick Bolton has it right at the New York Times in Disruptions: You Know You Can’t Live Without Apple’s Latest Glass Rectangle: Apple's New iPads and Planned Obsolescence in Devices.

But there are limits. See Austin Carr at Fast Company in Acer Execs Admit Innovator's Dilemma, Question How Long Apple Remains Apple.

One man's glass rectangle
is another man's protected patent
and the possible road to immense wealth.
But for how long?

The general developing realisation of the business and consumer public that it is being outsmarted via abuse of the patent and design laws is not stopping companies from developing new methods of planned obsolescence, such as incompatible plugs. Quite brilliant, actually. Such a simple scam to force users to buy the newest products.

We are gratified to see, as in Bolton's article above, that increasing numbers of people are realising that the patent wars are waged as minimally camouflaged product marketing, as corporations not only try to extract additional money by patent trolling, but stifle competition with temporary injunctions against competing product sale, etc.

When the patenting of allegedly "new" rectangles fails, new products that are incompatible with old ones are of course the simplest means to enforce "planned obsolescence", by forcing consumers to "upgrade" or "update", even if they otherwise would be quite comfortable with using what they already have.

Windows 8 anyone? How about Surface?

"Progress" has its price and the biggest rewards go to those who are clever at designing ways to exploit the widespread weaknesses of their fellow men, and these are infinite.

See Matt Braga at Tested
in Planned Obsolescence: Is Modern Tech Built to Last?

See e.g. Kyle Wiens at Wired in Copyright and Planned Obsolescence: The Shady World of Repair Manuals.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

A Blueprint for an America Built to Last and the Example of the Marshall Plan for Europe after World War II

The 2012 U.S. Presidential Election, Tapping the Political Center and A Blueprint for an America Built to Last: The Example of the Marshall Plan for Europe (See Slideshare for An America Built to Last)

The final popular vote in the 2012 Presidential Election in the United States is going to be something like 61 million for incumbent President Barack Obama and 58 million for the challenger Mitt Romney. Republicans retained control of the House of Representatives, and Democrats retained control of the Senate, though their small gain does not give them the super-majority they need to get anything done without Republican Senatorial cooperation.

Not only are 61 million votes a lot of people on one side of the ballot, but 58 million votes are also a lot of people on the other side of the ballot.

That fairly balanced division of votes suggests that there could be an identifiable political center around which the votes congregate.

But where is that political center and whose center is it?
We at LawPundit are political centrists, the "swing vote" as it were, so we were thus interested to read that immediately after the election, Kentucky Republican Senator and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, vexing author of filibustering obstructionist strategies during Obama's first term, had issued a challenge to Obama.

Although McConnell had stated prior to the election that his own partisan top priority was to keep Obama from winning a second term, McConnell, given little choice, but showing leadership, now challenges Obama to move toward the political center in order to facilitate joint work in a divided government, stating:
"To the extent he [Obama] wants to move to the political center, which is where the work gets done in a divided government, we'll be there to meet him half way."
Senator Mitch McConnell was a student body president in his youth, went to law school, and is obviously competent in law and legislation, which is the job of Congress. We do hope McConnell is abandoning harmful obstructionism.

We think that McConnell's "centrist" approach is pragmatic, and pragmatism was long the hallmark of the GOP, but lost in recent years. We also see that the Heritage Foundation has given McConnell a 75% "conservative" Senate vote rating. McConnell himself is thus not "the political center" he seeks. That center would appear to be to the left of McConnell. So where is it?

An American "political centrist" in any case is a far different figure than a European "political centrist", while a "political centrist" in California or New York State differs greatly from a moderate in the Southern states or even in the Midwest. The cultures and values are different in the regions identified by the Bureau of Census as America's four main geographic regions: West, Midwest, South and Northeast.

So what is the unifying "political centrist thread" that could be found there?  Could one posit that it is the consensus of a common pragmatic purpose more than a common ideology? We think so. We think that politics should focus on solutions rather than problems, on results rather than theories.

We ourselves definitely support freeing national politics as much as possible from the political extremists on the left and right political wings, whose politics are those of destruction, rather than reconstruction. They claim noble motives, but we see only destructive results. America does not need extremists destroying what has taken so many people, resources and lives to build up over hundreds of years. What America needs is a land from shining sea to shining sea filled with politically sensible and moderate citizens who share a consensus about a positive American future. Hence, the correct political path would seem to be a centrist-guided reconstruction of America.

As an example, America needs to rebuild at least 25% of its road and highway bridges. That is not a political issue -- it is a pragmatic issue. The cost is estimated at ca. $2 trillion dollars. Who else, but taxpayers, can pay that amount? and is that too much money? As well shall below, it CAN be done, and the amount is not out of this world.

It is the job of the legislators we now have in Congress to get reconstruction legislation passed, on both sides of the political ledger. Bridges are neither Republican or Democrat, but are bipartisan, or better, non-partisan. We saw that in the Minnesota bridge disaster of 2007 (Popular Mechanics).

Reconstruction will greatly help to take care of current unemployment problems throughout the country. It is the job of Congress to see that such reconstruction is properly financed. Although many people of means oppose taxation for nearly any purpose, the fact is that those who have the money have always financed such necessary reconstruction work and those who do not have the money are paid to do the actual required physical and mental work, and it has always been that way.

We could of course require that the "not haves" finance the work and that the "haves" do the actual work of reconstruction, but, really, have you ever seen the Trumps of this world working on construction crews? No? Neither have we.

One job of politicians is to get US citizens and legislators to understand the following basic economic truth: upturns in the economy can only be achieved if people have money in their pockets to spend, and they can only obtain that money if they work, and they can only work if the people who control the money in society provide that work, either through private enterprise -- for many the preferred vehicle in capitalism, or via government programs and financing. There is no other way. None.

Let us take one recent example of reconstruction in America, in Nebraska.

We visited Nebraska last year for the first time in 25 years and were pleased but amazed to see Interstate 80 between Lincoln and Omaha being reconstructed and expanded, more than 50 years after Eisenhower, part of what was later named the "Dwight D. Eisenhower System of Interstate and Defense Highways". Only now is Nebraska starting to get a highway that will be comparable to a standard Autobahn in modern Germany, which has many of them, not just one. Many are masterpieces of engineering and design. If a small country such as Germany can build such magnificent roads, what, except for the failing will of leading US personages and the stinginess of its citizens, keeps a much larger America from reconstructing its roads and highways?

Indeed, almost all roads in Germany are paved and have underground drainage systems. Less advanced, open drainage trenches, ditches or gullies are frequent in the USA and can be found in the United Kingdom. Similarly, in view of frequent power blackouts in the USA due to power lines down in storms, many power lines in Germany run underground, not above ground as in the USA, thus greatly reducing storm-caused power blackouts.

But how is it possible that America lags so far behind Germany? After WWII, most of Germany was destroyed and everything had to be rebuilt from the ground up. How was it achieved? Is there a lesson here for politicians from both political parties in the USA? We quote here at length from the Wikipedia article on the Marshall Plan, which of course is taken from numerous sources:
"The Marshall Plan (officially the European Recovery Program, ERP) was the American program to aid Europe where the United States gave monetary support to help rebuild European economies after the end of World War II in order to prevent the spread of Soviet Communism.[1] The plan was in operation for four years beginning in April 1948. The goals of the United States were to rebuild a war-devastated region, remove trade barriers, modernize industry, and make Europe prosperous again.[2]
The initiative was named after Secretary of State George Marshall. The plan had bipartisan support in Washington, where the Republicans controlled Congress and the Democrats controlled the White House. The Plan was largely the creation of State Department officials, especially William L. Clayton and George F. Kennan. Marshall spoke of urgent need to help the European recovery in his address at Harvard University in June 1947.[2][3]
The reconstruction plan, developed at a meeting of the participating European states, was established on June 5, 1947. It offered the same aid to the Soviet Union and its allies but they did not accept it,[4][5] as to do so would be to allow a degree of US control over the Communist economies.[6] During the four years that the plan was operational, US $13 billion in economic and technical assistance was given to help the recovery of the European countries that had joined in the Organization for European Economic Co-operation. This $13 billion was in the context of a U.S. GDP of $258 billion in 1948, and was on top of $13 billion in American aid to Europe between the end of the war and the start of the Plan that is counted separately from the Marshall Plan.[7] The Marshall Plan was replaced by the Mutual Security Plan at the end of 1951.[8]
The ERP addressed each of the obstacles to postwar recovery. The plan looked to the future, and did not focus on the destruction caused by the war. Much more important were efforts to modernize European industrial and business practices using high-efficiency American models, reduce artificial trade barriers, and instill a sense of hope and self-reliance.[9]
By 1952 as the funding ended, the economy of every participant state had surpassed pre-war levels; for all Marshall Plan recipients, output in 1951 was at least 35% higher than in 1938.[10] Over the next two decades, Western Europe enjoyed unprecedented growth and prosperity, but economists are not sure what proportion was due directly to the ERP, what proportion indirectly, and how much would have happened without it. The Marshall Plan was one of the first elements of European integration, as it erased trade barriers and set up institutions to coordinate the economy on a continental level—that is, it stimulated the total political reconstruction of western Europe.[11]
Belgian economic historian Herman Van der Wee concludes the Marshall Plan was a "great success":
"It gave a new impetus to reconstruction in Western Europe and made a decisive contribution to the renewal of the transport system, the modernization of industrial and agricultural equipment, the resumption of normal production, the raising of productivity, and the facilitating of intra-European trade."[12]
Consider that the Marshall Plan described above constituted ca. 5% of American GDP and that another $13 billion in aid was given prior to the official start of the Marshall Plan, making it 10% of US GDP.

The GDP of the USA currently is about $15 trillion, so that a comparable plan today for America itself would have a price tag of $1.5 trillion, which is near to the amount required. Could it be done? Of course it could. Why are Americans unwilling to do for themselves what they once did for Europe?

When America instituted the Marshall Plan to reconstruct Europe after WWII, that took a lot of money, US taxpayer money, and it worked. America got a tremendous return on that money, a massive yield which brought "the American way of life" to Europe and started a long-term European peace, not to mention the opening of new markets and a new kind of globalization via NATO and the transatlantic alliance, which reduced global dangers. Those advances should be continued.

However, the job of politicians today in America is to get Americans to put their money back to work in their own country, rather than financing growth elsewhere.

Moreover, when you put people to work, you must have them doing something that is constructive and sensible, rather than what is destructive or degenerate.

The American system has enabled the wealth of those "who have" the money today. It is THEIR responsibility to sustain that America.

The proper standard is:
If you take out of the pot or have taken out of the pot,
then you must put back in what you have taken or take, plus interest.
That is the only way a nation can be sustained over time.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

American Presidential Election Day: The Winner 2012 Will Be? Do the Odds Tell Us?

On this Election Day, U.S. Presidential Election betting odds at OddsChecker make the incumbent President Barack Obama the prohibitive favorite to win the election, as President Obama goes off at ca. 1/6 odds to win, while challenger Mitt Romney goes off at ca. 4 to 1 odds to win.

You can calculate what that means at Conversion and Calculation of Betting Odds. Betting odds of 1/1 would mean even money. 1/10 means essentially that you would have to put up €100 to win €10, i.e. a return of 1 for 10.

In places where betting is legal, for the above Presidential election odds:
  • if you were to put up €60 and Obama won at 1/6 odds, you would only win €10 plus the return of your €60 bet
  • if you were to put up €60 on Romney, you would win €240 plus the return of your €60 bet.
Of course, betting odds are just that, and they merely calculate percentages based on what is known at the time. No one ever really knows how voters will actually mark their votes in the voting booth, since that is secret.

We will only know after the votes are counted.

Friday, November 02, 2012

In Effect Throughout the European Union: Samsung Galaxy Tab Does Not Infringe Apple Registered Design On Rectangle With Rounded Corners: High Court of England and Wales Orders Apple to Post Text On Its Website to Make That Clear

For more than a year, we have been posting at LawPundit about the absurdity of the court injunctions issued against Samsung Galaxy Tab products in favor of Apple, and we can now report to have -- again -- been juridically right all along.

This posting discusses a court-ordered notice required of Apple by the High Court of Justice of England and Wales, with the image of the newspaper version of the notice linked from The Next Web:


As can be read above, the Apple company was ordered by the High Court of Justice of England and Wales to post a statement on its website that the High Court had found that Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1, Tab 8.9 and Tab 7.7 do not infringe Apple's EU registered design No. 0000181607-0001 on a rectangle with rounded corners.

See the judgment, which is applicable throughout the entire European Union.

Apple, apparently thinking it is above the law, did not leave it at that in its court-ordered website posting but added extraneous text alleging Samsung infringements of Apple products in other countries -- inclusion of which was clearly improper, since the court decision in question ONLY involved the question of whether Samsung's Galaxy Tab infringed upon the EU design registered by Apple, which the Court in the judgment written by Sir Robin Jacob found it clearly DID NOT (we excerpt the judgment):
  1. "So this case is all about, and only about, Apple's registered design and the Samsung products. The registered design is not the same as the design of the iPad. It is quite a lot different....

  2. Other disputes between the parties in other countries have concerned other intellectual property rights. We are not concerned with any of them....
The Netherlands
On June 27th 2011 Apple applied for a preliminary injunction in respect of all three Samsung tablets. It was refused at first instance and on appeal. Apple has an outstanding petition to the Supreme Court on a point of law. On 8th September 2011 Samsung issued a claim for a declaration of non-infringement which is on-going.
Samsung issued a claim for a declaration of non-infringement on 8th September 2011. The claim is ongoing. Apple are challenging jurisdiction. How far that can get is perhaps questionable given that before it did so it entered a defence on the merits. It may well be that the proceedings have now been overtaken by events in that there is a European-wide declaration of non-infringement granted by HHJ Birss and upheld by this judgment. No preliminary injunction has been sought in Spain and none is in force. [emphasis added by LawPundit]
On 4th August 2011 Apple applied ex parte for a preliminary injunction in relation to the 10.1. It was granted without Samsung having an opportunity of being heard. Moreover it was granted on a pan-European basis. The defendants were SEC ["SEC"=Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd] and its local German subsidiary. Subsequently the injunction was restricted to Germany as regards SEC. [bracketed material added by LawPundit]
On 24th October 2011 the Landgericht Düsseldorf granted a pan-European injunction (excluding Germany) which included the 7.7 but not the 10.1 against SEC's German subsidiary but refused such an injunction as against SEC in respect of the 7.7. Apple appealed the decision to refuse pan-European relief against SEC.
The registered design injunctions in respect of the 10.1 and 8.9 were set aside on appeal in January 2012.... [emphasis added by LawPundit]
In the Californian proceedings where a number of patents (both design and invention software patents) were in issue, we were told the jury held that Samsung's products did not infringe the design patent corresponding to the registered design we are considering ("design patent" is the US terminology for what in Europe is called a "registered design"). The laws as to infringement differ somewhat.

6. The upshot of all this is that there is now no injunction anywhere based on the registered design or its equivalent....[emphasis added by LawPundit]
The High Court has now given Apple 48 hours to put up proper text and take down the improper text it previously posted. Apple has alleged that putting up new text in that time period could not be done:
"Apple was required to alter and change the positioning of its statement from a small linked page, to an apology on the front page of its website, which needs to be printed in 11-pt Arial font."
See Tech Crunch and Apple Removes "Incorrect" Legal Statement From U.K. Website Following Court Order In iPad Vs. Galaxy Tab Case.

As Natasha Lomas writes there:
"... Sir Robin Jacob ... is reported to have added: "I would like to see the head of Apple make an affidavit about why [compliance with the order] is such a technical difficulty for the Apple company." " [text in brackets added by LawPundit]
NO ONE is above the law. Also not the monopolist Apple.

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Eurozone Map: Outstanding Graphic Detail at The Economist

This is a MUST HAVE.
One new chart, map or infographic per working day
at Graphic Detail at the Economist.

See this absolutely outstanding blog
at Graphic detail | The Economist.

Below are three examples:

Inequality and Our World Economy: The Economist Reports on For Richer, For Poorer

For richer, for poorer ... where are YOU?

The Economist has picked up the cause of inequality under the banner of "True Progressivism" at Inequality and the world economy: True Progressivism, writing inter alia:
"... as our special report [For richer, for poorer] this week argues, inequality has reached a stage where it can be inefficient and bad for growth."
That special report writes, inter alia:
"The democratisation of living standards has masked a dramatic concentration of incomes over the past 30 years, on a scale that matches, or even exceeds, the first Gilded Age. Including capital gains, the share of national income going to the richest 1% of Americans has doubled since 1980, from 10% to 20%, roughly where it was a century ago.

... the economics establishment has become concerned about who gets what. Research by economists at the IMF suggests that income inequality slows growth, causes financial crises and weakens demand."
Read both the article and the report
to get a good grasp of the present world situation
and what may need to be done to get things back in balance.

Copyrights, Property Ownership, Differential Pricing and the First Sale Doctrine in Law and Capitalism

The landmark copyright case Kirtsaeng v. Wiley will be argued today at the United States Supreme Court. Joe Mullin at Ars Technica has a nice write-up at How a Supreme Court ruling may stop you from reselling just about anything.

This is a non-political issue so that we expect a unanimous Supreme Court decision -- with the ratio decidendi in the opinion to run something like this:

"Differential pricing is a luxury of capitalism afforded to sellers of goods and services in the United States and all over the world. In fact, our antitrust law generally prohibits price-fixing among competitors in the offer of sale of any given product [Apple and consorts to the contrary]. Sellers engaging in potentially lucrative practices such as differential pricing in different markets must also be prepared to suffer the risks that such differential pricing encompasses, among these being the likelihood that someone could buy a given product cheaper HERE and sell it more expensively THERE. That, in fact, is the ESSENCE of the capitalist market system, and always has been.

In terms of the copyright law, the Constitution was not drafted to provide special privileges or advantages to authors in the manufacture or sale of their products, whether in domestic or foreign markets, but ONLY to protect their sole right to exploit their works, which has been interpreted by the courts to mean that the law will protect authors from unlawful copying by others, so that authors can sell their works themselves.

How they sell them is their choice, which is a question of authors' individual talents or those of their publishers, advertisers and marketers. But once sold, they are sold, and the deal has been done. The compensatory copyright rights are extinguished for the work sold because the author has been compensated for that particular work. Period. End of story.

That is all a part of how capitalism functions. Choices and results.

Authors who choose not to sell their works at ONE uniform price, but to engage in potentially more profitable or otherwise more desirable differential pricing in local, regional or world markets, can hardly expect the law and the courts to finance the risks involved in such a choice. Courts are not the handmaidens of traders or hawkers of wares. Moreover, the public via the legal system should not have to pay the bill to guarantee the success of marketing choices. That is outside the scope of copyright law.

If a copyright holder sells a copy of his or her copyrighted work in ANY form at ANY price in ANY place, it is considered sold, and, under the first sale doctrine, unless otherwise prohibited by law, it can be sold again to ANYONE at ANY price ANYWHERE. Our capitalist system tolerates nothing more and nothing less."

International Trade and Constitutional Law in the USA: Non Article III Courts Encroaching Upon Essential Attributes of Judicial Power Contrary to U.S. Supreme Court Precedents : ITC and Patents

There is no question that the U.S. International Trade Commission or ITC has the power to ban imports of devices to the USA that it sees as threats to domestic trade because of patent infringements established by Article III courts. It is equally clear, however, that the ITC has no Constitutional right to itself determine whether one or more patent infringements have occurred, as this is the legal domain of "real" Article III courts under the U.S. Constitution. Contrary to Supreme Court precedent, "essential attributes of judicial power" are being encroached upon by non-Article III-courts.

We are political centrists and some people mistakenly think we are in favor of excessive government powers. Nothing could be further from the truth, and that is why we are staunchly in favor of a massive reduction of so-called administrative law "courts" such as the ITC, or octopus-like agencies such as the USPTO, as these are increasingly encroaching upon the territory of the real courts, in violation of the U.S. Constitution.

The most recent ITC decisions in the patent field are one example of that.

The ITC is in fact at it again, trying to wreak economic havoc in the patent field. See Samsung infringed four Apple patents, ITC rules, by Hayley Tsukayama at the Washington Post, and Samsung loses another big patent case to Apple, this time at ITC, by Joe Mullin at Ars Technica.

One of the patents found infringed there by the ITC is not even being "practiced" by Apple and can hardly be a threat to domestic trade.

What is the legal basis for having so- called "administrative law judges" in America, where "real" judges are specifically provided for by the Constitution?

So-called "administrative judges" or "Article I judges" are not real judges under the U.S. Constitution but are simply normal civil servants for some agency under the executive or legislative branch of government, people who are increasingly exercising judicial functions in a nation governed by a Constitution that vigorously applies the separation of powers doctrine via Article III, Section 1 of that U.S. Constitution, expressly delegating any and all "judging" authority to the judicial branch of government as follows:
"The judicial power of the United States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behaviour, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services, a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office."
There is an implicit understanding here that the Supreme Court of the United States -- and inferior courts to it IN THE SAME judicial system, of course -- constitute the American Judiciary, and NOTHING ELSE. Any rational reading of that clause EXCLUDES any inferior courts being created within the auspices of either the legislative or executive branch, since that would contravene not only the above provision but would be contrary to the separation of powers doctrine which serves as the foundation of the U.S. Constitution.

Past Supreme Court precedent on this issue is unnecessarily permissive and has led to confusion, such that administrative courts now regularly overstep the major limitation set by the U.S. Supreme Court, which is that the "essential attributes of judicial power" must stay with Article III courts.

In fact, plaintiffs are increasingly bringing cases before administrative courts precisely to evade "real courts" because those administrative courts are wielding "essential attributes of judicial power" and doing so with impunity, while Supreme Court Justices are busy writing books on law, supporting their spouses in political movements, or traveling the country on lecture tours, rather than doing what they are supposed to be doing, which is overseeing the nation's judiciary and promoting order in the precedents of the legal system, especially in the modern jungle of intellectual property law.

Here is what the Wikipedia writes about Supreme Court dictates on Article I and Article IV courts (we cite to the Wikipedia not for its legal authority but because it poses fewer intellectual property rights issues due to quotation):
"Supreme Court rulings limiting the power of Article I and Article IV tribunals

The concept of a legislative court was first defined by Chief Justice John Marshall in the case of American Ins. Co. v. 356 Bales of Cotton, 1 Pet. 511 (1828), which is sometimes referred to as Canter, after a claimant in the case. In this case, a court in what was then the Territory of Florida had made a ruling on the disposition of some bales of cotton that had been recovered from a sunken ship. This clearly fell into the realm of admiralty law, which is part of the federal judicial power according to Article III of the Constitution. Yet the judges of the Florida territorial court had four-year terms, not the lifetime appointments required by Article III of the Constitution. Marshall's solution was to declare that territorial courts were established under Article I of the constitution. As such, they could not exercise the federal judicial power, and therefore the law that placed admiralty cases in their jurisdiction was unconstitutional.
Tenure that is guaranteed by the Constitution is a badge of a judge of an Article III court. The argument that mere statutory tenure is sufficient for judges of Article III courts was authoritatively answered in Ex parte Bakelite Corp.:[5]
... the argument is fallacious. It mistakenly assumes that whether a court is of one class or the other depends on the intention of Congress, whereas the true test lies in the power under which the court was created and in the jurisdiction conferred. Nor has there been any settled practice on the part of Congress which gives special significance to the absence or presence of a provision respecting the tenure of judges. This may be illustrated by two citations. The same Congress that created the Court of Customs Appeals made provision for five additional circuit judges and declared that they should [370 U.S. 530, 597] hold their offices during good behavior; and yet the status of the judges was the same as it would have been had that declaration been omitted. In creating courts for some of the Territories Congress failed to include a provision fixing the tenure of the judges; but the courts became legislative courts just as if such a provision had been included.
In Glidden Co. v. Zdanok, the court made the following statement regarding courts in unincorporated territories:
Upon like considerations, Article III has been viewed as inapplicable to courts created in unincorporated territories outside the mainland, Downes v. Bidwell, 182 U.S. 244, 266-267; Balzac v. Porto Rico, 258 U.S. 298, 312-313; cf. Dorr v. United States, 195 U.S. 138, 145, 149, and to the consular courts established by concessions from foreign countries, In re Ross, 140 U.S. 453, 464-465, 480.
Ever since Canter, the federal courts have been wrestling with the division between legislative and judicial courts. The Supreme Court most thoroughly delineated the permissible scope of Article I tribunals in Northern Pipeline Co. v. Marathon Pipe Line Co., 458 U.S. 50 (1982), striking down the statute that created the original U.S. bankruptcy court. The Court noted in that opinion that the framers of the Constitution had developed a scheme of separation of powers which clearly required that the judiciary be kept independent of the other two branches via the mechanism of lifetime appointments. However, the Court noted three situations (based on historical understanding) in which Congress could give judicial power to non-Article III courts:
  1. Courts for non-state areas (U.S. territories and the District of Columbia) in which Congress is acting as both local and national government.
  2. Military courts (or courts-martial), under the historical understanding and clearly laid out exceptions in the Constitution.
  3. Legislative courts established under the premise that, where Congress could have simply given the Executive Branch the power to make a decision, it has the lesser power to create a tribunal to make that decision. This power is limited to adjudication of public rights, such as the settling of disputes between the citizens and the government.
The Court also found that Congress has the power under Article I to create adjunct tribunals, so long as the "essential attributes of judicial power" stay in Article III courts. This power derives from two sources. First, when Congress creates rights, it can require those asserting such rights to go through an Article I tribunal. Second, Congress can create non-Article III tribunals to help Article III courts deal with their workload, but only if the Article I tribunals are under the control of the Article III courts. The bankruptcy courts, as well as the tribunals of magistrate judges who decide some issues in the district courts, fall within this category of "adjunct" tribunals. All actions heard in an Article I tribunal are subject to de novo review in the supervising Article III court, which retains the exclusive power to make and enforce final judgments.

Pursuant to Congress’ authority under Article IV, §3, of the Constitution to "make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States;" Congress may create territorial courts and vest them with subject-matter jurisdiction over causes arising under both federal law and local law. But "the Supreme Court long ago determined that in the 'unincorporated' territories, such as American Samoa, the guarantees of the Constitution apply only insofar as its 'fundamental limitations in favor of personal rights' express 'principles which are the basis of all free government which cannot be with impunity transcended.'"[6]

The Supreme Court noted in Commodity Futures Trading Commission v. Schor, 478 U.S. 833 (1986), that parties to litigation may voluntarily waive their right to an Article III tribunal and thereby submit themselves to a binding judgment from an Article I tribunal.

The U.S. Supreme Court in the course of the opinion from Rassmussen v. United States (197 U.S. 596, 524) declared (p. 352, L. ed. p. 186, Sup. Ct. Rep. p. 1119):
'Alaska is one of the territories of the United States. It was so designated in that order [referring to the order of this court assigning to the ninth circuit], and has always been so regarded. And the court established by the act of 1884 is the court of last resort within the limits of that territory. It is, therefore, in every substantial sense, the supreme court of that territory.'
Article IV judges do not have the authority to decide petitioners’ appeals or be appointed to a United States Court of Appeals.[7] In Nguyen v. United States (2003), the Supreme Court ruled that a panel of the Court of Appeals consisting of two Article III judges and one Article IV judge did not have the authority to decide petitioners’ appeals."
The initial error was of course thus made by Justice Marshall in "Canter" [American Ins. Co. v. 356 Bales of Cotton, 1 Pet. 511 (1828)] where he used the trick of artificially drawing a distinction between Article III courts and other "purported" courts, whereas of course, he should have stated that there CAN ONLY BE Article III courts and no others. Ever since then, as a result, the "fiction" created by Marshall has been serving to help undermine the separation of powers, and has led to an administrative law system that is encroaching the "real" and legitimate Article III judicial system at all levels.

So-called administrative law courts and their so-called administrative law judges are in their function negative signposts on the road to tyranny, as correctly articulated online in The Fiction and Tyranny of "Administrative Law", by philosopher Kelley L. Ross, since such so-called "courts" permit one branch of government by itself to 1) make, 2) interpret and 3) enforce laws and regulations, which is completely contrary to the separation of powers principle, by which each of those functions is delegated to a different branch of government, i.e. legislative, judicial or executive.

It is time to start cutting administrative agencies and administrative law courts down to their correct Constitutional size.

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Price of American Inequality is a Heavy Burden on the US Economy Says Nobel Prize Winning Economist Joseph E. Stiglitz

For years, we have been posting at LawPundit about the inequality of wealth and income in America, and we see that Joseph E. Stiglitz has a New York Times article titled Some Are More Unequal Than Others, relating to his recent book, The Price of Inequality (2012), which made The New York Times best seller list.

As written at the Wikipedia, Stiglitz, currently a Professor at Columbia University, won the Nobel Prize for Economics in 2001, has served as senior vice president and chief economist of the World Bank, and is "one of the most frequently cited economists in the world".

Via Yahoo Finance, in an interview by Matthew Craft of the Associated Press in Nobel economist: Inequality weighs on US economy, Stiglitz is quoted as follows:
"[Question]: ... you make the case that income inequality is more important than ever. How so?

[Answer]: Because it's getting worse.... For two decades, all the increase in the country's wealth, which was enormous, went to the people at the very top.... Inequality has always been justified on the grounds that those at the top contributed more to the economy — "the job creators."

Then came 2008 and 2009, and you saw these guys who brought the economy to the brink of ruin walking off with hundreds of millions of dollars. And you couldn't justify that in terms of contribution to society.

The myth had been sold to people, and all of a sudden it was apparent to everybody that it was a lie.

Mitt Romney has called concerns about inequality the "politics of envy." Well, that's wrong. Envy would be saying, "He's doing so much better than me. I'm jealous." This is: "Why is he getting so much money, and he brought us to the brink of ruin?" And those who worked hard are the ones ruined....

The story we were told was that inequality was good for our economy. I'm telling a different story, that this level of inequality is bad for our economy."

Thursday, October 18, 2012

U.S. Presidential Election as a Choice for the President of Pop Culture?

Frank Bruni at the NYTimes has a thought-provoking take
on the Presidential Election in America
Pop Goes the President,
suggesting that:
"This presidential election will go down as the one in which the pop-culture pander reached its ludicrous apotheosis...."
[link added by LawPundit]
Bruni closes with the comment:
"I'm not sure if that says more about them [the candidates]
or about us."
and one opinion comment to Bruni's posting writes:
"Sadly, Frank, it says more about "us", the candidates just play to the "culture" of the moment to capture attention....

I just heard a Dick Cavett interview when he says something like we are a nation that is tending toward mediocrity. I think that's optimistic, as I think we are much further down the road to being another failed empire... and so it goes..."
A failed empire?

Those words seem a bit too harsh for us at the moment, but they are a warning for a nation torn by excessive polarization of interests, boundless greed and the absence of core values that once made the country great but today make the United States look more like the countries the immigrants once fled. United the nation may yet stand, but deeply divided it may surely fall.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Scotland Monuments in Kilmartin Are a Prehistoric European Sky Map of the Heavens

This is a posting about technological innovation in prehistoric Europe for all our readers who hail from Scotland, Ireland, Wales, England, or who have an interest in Europe's or man's history or that of Ancient Britain, broadly seen. Reposted from the Ancient World Blog.

Monuments of Kilmartin, Scotland Are a Sky Map of the Heavens

This posting announces my decipherment of the Kilmartin, Scotland monuments showing them to be a sky map of the heavens (at least 4500 years old). That decipherment was completed today, October 15, 2012, completing work initially begun in the year 2000.

Substantial progress was made in 2008 when friends invited my significant other and myself to spend some time at their home in western Scotland.

The monuments of Kilmartin cover a 6-mile radius of terrain and employ the hermetic principle, "as above, so below" in creating a mirror-image of the stars on the surface of the Earth. Kilmartin was a mammoth ancient "star" project.

As written at the home page of the Kilmartin House Museum:
"There are more than 800 ancient monuments within a six-mile radius of the village of Kilmartin, Argyll, many of them are are prehistoric. This extraordinary concentration and diversity of monuments distinguishes the Kilmartin Glen as an area of outstanding archaeological importance. It is one of Scotland’s richest prehistoric landscapes."
The beauty of my decipherment is that once one knows the solution to the monument puzzle, that solution is open to anyone who has or obtains a minimal understanding of astronomy and the stars of the heavens.

The key to the decipherment was the initial  identification of the stars of Cygnus, Draco and Leo. The rest followed. If the decipherment were correct, the other stars had to fit. They do, and ANY reader can check the solution. That solution is not perfect, and surely much will be done down the road to improve it, but its general correctness is without doubt

Of course, the ancients may not have made the same groupings of stars into constellations or asterisms as we do today, and it is unlikely they used exactly all the same stars, but the bright stars in the sky lend themselves to stellar organization and sky-mapping such as we find in our modern Zodiac.

The three images presented below are:
  1. Kilmartin Monuments Deciphered as Astronomy by Andis Kaulins, 2000 to 2012, as based on an Ordnance Survey map that maps monument positions at Kilmartin. Kilmartin (page x), An Inventory of the Monuments Extracted from Argyll, Volume 6, Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS), 1999.
  2. Sky map excerpts clipped from Starry Night Pro, the best software program out there for this kind of work,, showing how the stars actually looked ca. 2500 B.C.
  3. A combined image which combines 1 and 2 above, for comparison.
Image 1: Kilmartin Monuments Deciphered

Image 2: Starry Night Pro Clip,
Stars of the Sky for Top and Bottom of Kilmartin Decipherment

Image 3: Kilmartin Monuments Deciphered plus 2 Starry Night Pro Astronomy Software Image Clips to Show the Stars Depicted

Please be advised that the work above continues the basic research on ancient monuments, signs and symbols published by Andis Kaulins in:
The author has deciphered a similar map of the heavens on Earth in the case of Tanum, Sweden. See and for related works,

Saturday, October 13, 2012

US Federal Circuit Overturns Preliminary Injunction That Had Blocked Sale of Samsung Galaxy Nexus in the USA

We have been right all along in our postings on the Apple-Samsung patent litigation fiascos, but we were nevertheless quite pleasantly astonished at the recent Federal Circuit order finding an abuse of discretion by Cupertino's Judge Koh, who has been issuing preliminary injunctions in favor of the local Cupertino-based Apple firm.

That Federal Circuit order overturns Koh's injunction blocking the sale of Samsung's Galaxy Nexus in the United States.

The reasoning of the Federal Circuit in the order written by Circuit Judge Sharon Prost here should be instructive to judges around the world who are wrongfully and repeatedly issuing injunctions because of patent infringement claims under the theory of avoiding irreparable harm:
"[I]n cases such as this - where the accused product includes many features of which only one (or a small minority) infringe - a finding that the patentee will be at risk of irreparable harm does not alone justify injunctive relief. Rather, the patentee must also establish that the harm is sufficiently related to the infringement.... Thus, to satisfy the irreparable harm factor in a patent infringement suit, a patentee must establish both of the following requirements: 1) that absent an injunction, it will suffer irreparable harm, and 2) that a sufficiently strong causal nexus relates the alleged harm to the alleged infringement....

[A]lthough the irreparable harm and the causal nexus inquiries may be separated for the ease of analysis, they are inextricably related concepts. As this court recently explained:

To show irreparable harm, it is necessary to show that the infringement caused harm in the first place. Sales lost to an infringing product cannot irreparably harm a patentee if consumers buy that product for reasons other than the patented feature. If the patented feature does not drive the demand for the product, sales would be lost even if the offending feature were absent from the accused product. Thus, a likelihood of irreparable harm cannot be shown if sales would be lost regardless of the infringing conduct. Apple I, 678 F.3d at 1324.
In other words, it may very well be that the accused product would sell almost as well without incorporating the patented feature. And in that case, even if the competitive injury that results from selling the accused device is substantial, the harm that flows from the alleged infringement (the only harm that should count) is not. Thus, the causal nexus inquiry is indeed part of the irreparable harm calculus: it informs whether the patentee's allegations of irreparable harm are pertinent to the injunctive relief analysis, or whether the patentee seeks to leverage its patent for competitive gain beyond that which the inventive contribution and value of the patent warrant." [emphasis added by LawPundit]
We have emphasized that last sentence because it accurately describes the actual motivation for many patent infringement actions being brought today, asking for injunctive relief as a means to stifle competition far beyond what some minor -- and often erroneously granted -- patent would warrant.

Howard Mintz has the story at Samsung wins round in legal battle with Apple - San Jose Mercury News and links to the original order.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

ECB European Central Bank Bond Purchasing Considered Legal as Outright Monetary Transactions OMT under Article 18.1 of the Statute of the European System of Central Banks

Bond purchases by the European Central Bank ECB are considered to be legal as Outright Monetary Transactions OMT under Article 18.1 of the Statute of the European System of Central Banks

Gabi Thesing has the story at Bloomberg Business Week in ECB Says OMT Is Legal as Necessary Tool in Special Times.

See also Jana Randow at Bloomberg on ECB Rejects IMF Call for Lower Rates Citing Broken Transmission [transmission of the ECB policy].

See The European Central Bank
  • general index
  • legal framework index
    which provides inter alia:

    Article 17

    Accounts with the ECB and the national central banks
    In order to conduct their operations, the ECB and the  national  central  banks  may  open  accounts  for  credit  institutions,  public
    entities and other market participants and accept assets, including book entry securities, as collateral.

    Article 18

    Open market and credit operations
    18.1.    In order to achieve the objectives of the ESCB and to carry out its tasks, the ECB and the national central banks may:
    —  operate  in the  financial  markets  by  buying  and  selling outright  (spot  and  forward)  or  under  repurchase  agreement  and  by lending or borrowing claims and marketable instruments, whether in Community or in non-Community currencies, as well as precious metals;
    —  conduct  credit  operations  with  credit  institutions  and  other  market  participants,  with  lending  being  based  on  adequate collateral.

    18.2.    The  ECB  shall  establish  general  principles  for  open  market  and  credit  operations  carried  out  by  itself  or  the  national
    central banks, including for the announcement of conditions under which they stand ready to enter into such transactions."
    [emphasis added by LawPundit]

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