Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Election 2016 Lessig

Lester Lawrence Lessig III, a fifty four year old Harvard Law Professor withdrew from the Democratic Primaries. An interesting man, his political interests include copyright law and the extent to which the internet should be controlled by the powerful. Not even going to pretend to understand the legal details, but I think his point is that the internet would serve democracy by being a less, rather than more regulated place. His other concern is a reform of the rules and regulations that surround the financing of political parties and their politicians. In short Lessig wants a more equal playing field. It's a popular position until a person becomes powerful.

There might have been a time when your political correspondent would have given more thought to a man whose name appears on the Scientific American Top Fifty Visionaries list and who has written a book about how to make art and commerce thrive in the hybrid economy, which is a mixed economy such as public/private, military/industrial. Sadly I'm not a big fan of any kind of top ten list, let alone a top fifty list. And once art thrives in any kind of economy, it's no longer art, it's a product with all that product entails. Which means his book should have been subtitled how to turn art from a thing of joy into drudgery. Given the theme of Election 2016 on these pages which is skeeviness, have to think Lessig III might not be.

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