Tuesday, June 25, 2013

White collar crime
at the Bradley Manning trial

The prosecution wants to introduce the pay rates of various military grades. Why? They want to say Bradley stole something, and the something was worth over $1000 dollars, and hey buddy that's felony territory. You are in big trouble now. Using the labor theory of value, they want to say that data cost x hours at y dollars per hour to create, and x times y is $102,000. Guilty.

Yes, there is a difference between stealing a baseball and stealing a baseball signed by the New York Yankees; namely the replacement cost is higher. But Bradley did not steal the data in that sense; it is closer to copyright violation type of stealing. And the value of a pirated copy of Michael Jackson's Black or White CD does not depend on the pay rates of the studio musicians.

Ellsberg at least stole copy paper.

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