Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Copyrights and Patents

The topic of discussion for this Constitution Monday comes from Article I.8.8: "The Congress shall have Power … To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries." Under this provision, authors and inventors have exclusive rights to their creative projects by law for a designated length of time.

"One of the most important factors contributing to the unprecedented development of inventions and advanced industrial techniques in the United States is this provision of the Constitution. It has also contributed to the most elaborate and comprehensive publishing enterprise in the world. American books, American songs, and American machines have dominated most of the world because of the advantages and profits accruing to those who do creative work and function under the protection of this provision of the American charter" (W. Cleon Skousen, The Making of America: The Substance and Meaning of the Constitution, p. 430).

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