So everyone has been blogging the story of the Digital Choice and Freedom Act, a bill designed to protect consumers fair-use rights. I don’t know whether the bill will ever get anywhere, but it is nice to see someone seeing the problem at least. But I want to point your attention to the very end of the article:
Lofgren’s bill aims to restore what Congress thought it was doing — preserving fair use for people who have lawful rights to use stuff,” said Paula Samuelson, a law professor at University of California-Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law
Think about it for a minute, Congress thought it was protecting fair-use rights when it created the DMCA? Could they have been any more wrong? This is why I am an advocate for a do-nothing Congress, because for every perceived ill they think they are correcting, they create 5 more, and don’t actually correct the one they are trying to correct in the first place. If this isn’t enough to convince you, take a real good look at Homeland Security and airport security measures since 9/11, you’ll see the same pattern. In fact, you’ll see it in most government programs, because they are career politicians and not experts at anything that might actually be useful. You want an interesting perspective, try and find out how many US Reps and Senators have any educational background in Economics, or Foreign Policy, or Military History, or even business. Not very many, most of them have backgrounds in politics and law, and that’s it. Yet they are the ones who get to decide economic, military and foreign policy on a daily basis. Are we really surprised then that they get it wrong more often than they get it right?