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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • If you put your tin foil hat on just right, you may think that stem cell research could be the biggest area of financial gain in the field of medicine.

    And, you wouldn't want to spoil that by mixing in federal funds and possibly having to put the findings into the public domain.

    Taking the federal money out of the picture makes it a nice... um... "investment opportunity".
    • Backing up in general and ignoring the ethical issues ... that's the way I think it should be, anyway. The government should never fund stuff like this, because then it sets itself up in competition with private business. We should let private investment drive the space program, the educational system, disease research, etc. And I promise you that things would continue to be funded ... witness all the breast cancer marathons and such. In fact, I'm personally pledged that if the government quits taxing m

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      J. David works really hard, has a passion for writing good software, and knows many of the world's best Perl programmers
      • That is a nice theory, and it would most likely be better than what we have going on right now... if it worked.

        I'm not sure it would... here is why:

        As an investor, I would not want a cure for Aids... or a cure for Cancer. (for example)

        Instead, I would want a drug that allowed you to live a somewhat "normal" life (and in the casee of Aids, I would want you spreading the disease) for as long as you bought and paid for my "cure". This solution would bring a much higher rate of return than a solution that actually cured the disease.

        To make matters worse, I would actually try to find the cure... and then "back out" of the cure just enough to get the above product... one that does not totally cure the disease.

        Then, patent the non-cure... but make sure that it contains enough of the important part needed to cover the cure. So, you effectively block that known cure from being developed. Then, run the product for the life of the patent.

        Then, when the patent is very close to expiring... file another patent that covers the other elements of the cure. And, begin another period of time where you can monopolize the market and continue pumping the revenue stream.

        So... we are talking about two patent cycles before anyone gets a chance to produce a cure that isn't monopoly priced. That is, two cycles *after* finding the cure.

        As a moral person, that idea is not optimal to me.

        I can't see depending on the free market coming up with the optimal solution on this one.

        As an aside, for your idea to work... there would have to be a high incentive to the investor that they would get thier return on investment. That has directly lead to the patent laws, and abuse of those laws that we currently have. IMHO.

        I don't think that is optimal either.

        I think that *sometimes* society has to solve problems, and not leave it up to "the market". I don't think that should be often tho... and definitely not a rule of thumb.

        In the end, I think of the market as a "tool" to be used to solve problems. It is not an end to itself. And not all problems can be solved with the one tool.
        • Here's why I don't agree with you:

          As an investor, I would not want a cure for Aids... or a cure for Cancer. (for example)

          As an investor WITH AIDS, I would want a cure for AIDS.

          As an investor with relatives WITH AIDS, I would want a cure for AIDS.

          As a member of the public with some money that can be pooled in various charitable uses, I would want a cure for AIDS.

          I think if the public cares enough to vote dollars out of people's pockets for a given cause, then they care enough that they would dona

          --
          J. David works really hard, has a passion for writing good software, and knows many of the world's best Perl programmers
          • Did you or did you not see in my first post where I talked about breast cancer charities?

            Yes. And, I'm not trying to do a point-counter point discussion. I think that there is too much overlap for that... and, I'm not up to it.

            I do see merit in your ideas, I also see merit in my own. I don't think either would work. Mainly because they aren't flexible enough. I tried to allude to that with my last paragraph.

            Is it moral for you to insist that your way is the only way and use the threat of force to take