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Tuesday, March 13, 2001

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Property rights

I find the whole idea of Napster to be a good thing that has been warped into something bad. There is nothing wrong with sharing a CD with a friend or even a few friends, but sharing it with millions of people is wrong. CD sales have dropped dramatically since Napster became big and the people who put their effort into making the music are being robbed.

I can't believe the people who are whining about their rights being taken away. They have no more right to get free music than to get free food (clothes, books, name your thing). Now if some musician or musical group wants to give their music away, that's fine; and some do want to put their music out on the internet. Most have too much invested in it to hand it out free.

I enjoy finding freebies also but the freebies should be handed out by those who have the right to. I think the Gutenburg Project is doing a wonderful job at putting online books that are no longer under copyright. I enjoy seeing books that are published online but the writers are finding out that people aren't honest enough to pay if they can get it free. Stephen King stopped putting his book online because people did not pay.

From what I've seen countries that are the strongest at protecting property rights are also the most free. By this I mean countries that protect the property of everyone, not just the elite. No country is perfect at this but the countries that have the weakest tradition of property rights are also the least free. If a government can take my property and give it to you, they can take your property and give it to me, or more likely, keep both of ours property for themselves. Even Castro lives well.

If you want something, work for it. I agree with Rush Limbaugh that there is nothing that is truly free, you always pay for it somehow. The ones that think the world owes them a living usually end up miserable and whiny, and, quite often, they end up criminals because they feel the world owes them. Not that I don't use government services but I try to not take advantage of them. These come ons that say they will show you how to get free stuff from the government rub me the wrong way also. There are some things that are best taken care of by the government but that doesn't mean people shouldn't pay for them.

I also don't mean that a society shouldn't help those who need help, but that's different from people expecting society to take care of them. Sometimes people need help. I've needed help and been grateful for it, but it's wrong to think that you are owed something by society.

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Rachel Aschmann 2001.
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