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Alex Kozinski

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For better or worse, we are the Court of Appeals for the Hollywood Circuit. Millions of people toil in the shadow of the law we make, and much of their livelihood is made possible by the existence of intellectual property rights. But much of their livelihood - and much of the vibrancy of our culture - also depends on the existence of other intangible rights: The right to draw ideas from a rich and varied public domain, and the right to mock, for profit as well as fun, the cultural icons of our time.
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Discussing the right of publicity issue raised in the case White v. Samsung Elec. Am., Inc., 989 F.2d 1512 (9th Cir. 1993).

 
Alex Kozinski

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I believe in property rights, but I believe in them as adjuncts to, and not as substitutes for human rights. I believe that normally the rights of property coincide with the rights of man; but where they do not, then the rights of man must be; put above the rights of property. I believe in shaping the ends of government to protect property; but wherever the alternative must be faced, I am for man and not for property. I am far from underestimating the importance of dividends, but I rank dividends below human character. I know well that if there is not sufficient prosperity the people will in the end rebel against any system, no matter how exalted morally; and reformers must not bring upon the people permanent economic ruin, or the reforms themselves will go down in the ruin.

 
Theodore Roosevelt
 

Property rights are not like other rights, contrary to what Madison and a lot of modern political theory says. If I have the right to free speech, it doesn't interfere with your right to free speech. But if I have property, that interferes with your right to have that property, you don't have it, I have it. So the right to property is very different from the right to freedom of speech. This is often put very misleadingly about rights of property; property has no right. But if we just make sense out of this, maybe there is a right to property, one could debate that, but it's very different from other rights.

 
Noam Chomsky
 

Overprotecting intellectual property is as harmful as underprotecting it. Culture is impossible without a rich public domain. Nothing today, likely nothing since we tamed fire, is genuinely new: Culture, like science and technology, grows by accretion, each new creator building on the works of those who came before. Overprotection stifles the very creative forces it's supposed to nurture."

 
Alex Kozinski
 

The "human rights" advertised by the imperialists are privileges of the rich, privileges to do anything on the strength of money. The imperialists do not recognize the right of unemployed people to work, or the right of orphans or people without support to eat and survive, for instance, as human rights. As they do not grant working people elementary rights to existence and as they pursue anti-popular policies and policies of racial and national discrimination and colonialism, the imperialists have no right to speak about human rights. The imperialists are the most heinous enemy of human rights.

 
Kim Jong-il
 

When you expand the civil-rights struggle to the level of human rights, you can then take the case of the black man in this country before the nations in the UN. You can take it before the General Assembly. You can take Uncle Sam before a world court. But the only level you can do it on is the level of human rights. Civil rights keeps you under his restrictions, under his jurisdiction. Civil rights keeps you in his pocket. Civil rights means you’re asking Uncle Sam to treat you right. Human rights are something you were born with. Human rights are your God-given rights. Human rights are the rights that are recognized by all nations of this earth. And any time any one violates your human rights, you can take them to the world court.

 
Malcolm X
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