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Rand and Marx

I wrote an Objectivist friend the other day, "No matter what your stance on IP, surely you must wince to read Rand write: "patents are the heart and core of property rights." I mean... COME ON!"

Her reply: "Rand's view is a variation of the Communist view that a worker owns what he worked on for having had some kind of productive contact with it."

I had never thought of it this way; but he has a point. This helps explain why Rand focused on the necessity of IP as a way of ensuring that the innovator profits from his intellectual creativity. (I critique Rand's IP views in Against Intellectual Property; see text at notes 45 and 51 for the quoted line above and a related quote.)

Author:

Stephan Kinsella

Stephan Kinsella is an attorney in Houston, director of the Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom, and editor of Libertarian Papers.