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Business - IP, Imagination, Drugs, Gorman and Warhane.docx

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Western University
Philosophy 2074F/G
Michael Herbert

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS, MORALL IMAGINATION AND DRUGS – GORMAN, WARHANE  This paper will focus on the last challenge. It will weigh two seemingly opposing values: the value of IP protection and the value of increasing access to antiretroviral drugs for HIV/AIDS to indigent infected patients  Thus there evolved a set of patent and copyright laws that protect some or most products of the human mind for varying periods of time, against use by others of those products in various ways  Despite the legal treatment of IP rights as time limited protected claims in most Western countries, these rights are sometimes assumed to be perfect rights, a view that violation or destruction of copyrights, trademarks or patents are always wrong without exception  Rand contends that IP rights are the most basic rights; without them all other rights are threatened  There are a number of strong arguments for the protection of intellectual property from a utilitarian point of view  Many inventers and companies argue that they have rights to patent protection to control access to that process and product because without such protections there will be few incentives for new product or idea development  Patients and consumers would be the ultimate losers, companies contend  This is because with lower revenues, pharmaceutical companies could not put as much money into the research and development that is critical for the development of new products  Thus, lack of IP protection, by discouraging investment and development will widen the gap between the developed and developing counties  Without strong and effective global intellectual property rules, the gap between developed and developing countries will only grow in the future  Rather, we focus organize, select and censor even our simplest perceptions so that our experiences are framed by complex socially learned mind sets or cognitive schema  This conclusion is based on a commonly (although not universally) held assumption that human beings deal with the world through mindsets or mental models. Although the term is not always clearly defined, mental model encompasses the notion that human beings have mental representations or cognitive frames, that structure the stimuli or data with which they interact and these frameworks set up parameters though which experience or a certain set of experiences, is organized or filtered  The traditional intellectual property rights model is one way to frae our thinking, a mind set or mental model, a social construction of experiences that predominates in developed countries  Control, or not, of what one has patented is clearly linked to ownership and exclusive control of what one has discovered or created depends on exclusive ownership rights  IP phenomena are not single or even corporate creations; they are results of buildup of research and exchange of ideas  Discovered DNA – the discovery could not have been possible without the contributions of thousands of researchers, foundations, dollars and companies and a long history of overlapping and interrelated research  Recognizing how IP develops from a complex web of interrelationships tracks its causal origins. At the same time the nature of these relationships might helps us in recrafting our normative views about what kind of property  By law, IP rights are time-limited conventions. If IP rights are not the most basic rights that can trump others, they can be overridden in life thre
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