We Americans Were The Intellectual Property Thiefs Of The 18th And 19th Centuries

Jan 2016
56,372
53,046
Colorado
#1
Americans get very angry at the Chinese for stealing our intellectual property these days. Intellectual property rights are one of our biggest sore spots with the government of China. But Peter Andreas, Professor at Brown University's Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, and author of Smuggler Nation: How Illicit Trade Made America, says that our "righteous indignation and finger-pointing should be tempered by a historical reality check". Back in the day, WE were the intellectual property thiefs of the globe, and our first Treasury Secretary, Alexander Hamilton, was actually encouraging and subsidizing the theft of British industrial secrets!

This is a longish article, but well worth reading!

In trade wars of 200 years ago, the pirates were Americans
 
Jul 2011
35,107
2,948
Tennessee
#3
Americans get very angry at the Chinese for stealing our intellectual property these days. Intellectual property rights are one of our biggest sore spots with the government of China. But Peter Andreas, Professor at Brown University's Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, and author of Smuggler Nation: How Illicit Trade Made America, says that our "righteous indignation and finger-pointing should be tempered by a historical reality check". Back in the day, WE were the intellectual property thiefs of the globe, and our first Treasury Secretary, Alexander Hamilton, was actually encouraging and subsidizing the theft of British industrial secrets!

This is a longish article, but well worth reading!

In trade wars of 200 years ago, the pirates were Americans
Along with everyone else in the world at the time.
 
Jan 2016
56,372
53,046
Colorado
#6
So you are saying chinese ripping off intellectual property is ok......
Nope, not at all. I'm just pointing out that WE used to do it. A LOT. Maybe SOME of us need to know that we don't exactly have any kind of moral high ground here. We're merely defending our interests. We can't tell the Chinese that they shouldn't be doing this because we've never done anything like it, now can we?
 
Jul 2011
62,002
12,513
“Stay Down”
#7
Nope, not at all. I'm just pointing out that WE used to do it. A LOT. Maybe SOME of us need to know that we don't exactly have any kind of moral high ground here. We're merely defending our interests. We can't tell the Chinese that they shouldn't be doing this because we've never done anything like it, now can we?


So if you beat your wife in the past, that means you can never stand against spousal abuse?
 
Mar 2012
57,437
39,029
New Hampshire
#9
Nope, not at all. I'm just pointing out that WE used to do it. A LOT. Maybe SOME of us need to know that we don't exactly have any kind of moral high ground here. We're merely defending our interests. We can't tell the Chinese that they shouldn't be doing this because we've never done anything like it, now can we?
The US has a long history of "do as I say not as I do." A Canadian friend of mine just reminded me of this recently saying how often we interfere in other countrys elections and how many rulers we have murdered or ousted worldwide.