Seriously, this morning was a waffle on Supreme Court for me. First, the upheld the first sale doctrine (the fact that if you buy something, you have the right to re-sale). Which was under threat by an interpretation that the Constitution only protected first sale of goods made in the USA. And international goods were not protected. Which considering how few goods are 100% made in the USA could have been catastrophic (basically every electronic device would have been prohibited from re-sale). So this was a no brainer IMHO.
So why am I fuming !@#$% mad?
Because the Supreme Court refused to even hear the case of RIAA vs Jammie Thomas. Who was fined $222,000 for sharing 24 songs – and at one point the award was in the millions. Now we can debate the morality of file sharing, downloading, etc. And if you want, let’s go at it in the comments. Because frankly, RIAA and the copyright cartel have engaged in more theft, abuse and fraud than anyone else.
But the simple fact is that those songs are 99 cents each. 24 songs and a $222,000 fine is basically a fine that approaches 100,000x the value of the stolen goods.
And in light of the Eighth Amendment – “Prohibition of excessive bail and cruel and unusual punishment. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted”; seems to me to be a direct violation of the Constitution.
And to most of us folk, it essentially boils down to a deep pocket lobbying group who has spent millions bribing corrupt legislators (Senator Hatch may you choke on tortilla chip). In order to protect an extinct and abusive business model.
Yes, this case should have been heard. And I’m not saying she isn’t guilty. I am saying that a 100,000x fine is disgustingly and unconstitutionally excessive – a $2,200 fine is what she should be fined.
Shame on the Supreme Court. Shame! SHAME! SHAME!!!