NYTimes: Is Obama Punking Us?


 The problem is not the sense that the game is rigged, but that Americans are waiting for our institutions to give us power.

 This is true of republicans and democrats alike.

 And it assumes something akin to fascism, where all the power is vested in the institutions of state, and doled out to people, often on a patronage basis.

 The reality is that there is no institution to give us power. We all have that power. The question is whether we'll each learn to exercise it - and use it well.

You have no right...

BusinessWeek/TechCrunch reporter Sarah Lacy went on a rant against the RIAA's DRM policies and attempts to crush a range of popular start-ups trying to circumvent them (this on this morning's episode of "press: here" on KNTV, NBC's San Jose affiliate).


Her contention, so popular these days, is that the RIAA has no right to control the industry so tightly and they should give up their control to serve these young companies. Her reason? America us all about free enterprise and freedom of expression.


She contended that the RIAA "has no right" to maintain their stanglehold on the music business.


Did she forget freedom to run your business as you see fit? I don't agree with what the RIAA does (and it's a great example of how to mistreat your customers), but they have every right to run their business as they please. And the music publishers have every right to go along with them.


What's important and often forgotten is that consumers have every right not to buy music containing RIAA restrictions. And if consumers exercise that right, and music companies see sales dropping, they'll look for ways to salvage sales. And these music companies will find that parting ways with the RIAA will be profitable. And the RIAA will either change it's ways or lose it's influence.


But all of the rants, pontificating and protesting don't matter. Until we change our buying patterns, nothing else will change.


So, Ms. Lacy, may I suggest you start talking with your wallet, and maybe use your voice to help show the rest of us how to do so also?