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Ron Paul Asks UN For Help Geting Control of RonPaul.com Domain From Fans 611

Posted by samzenpus
from the strange-bedfellows dept.
First time accepted submitter thoughtfulbloke writes "Ron Paul has gone to the United Nations' World Intellectual Property Organization to seize control of the RonPaul.com domain from the fans that built it up, rather than purchase it. From the article: 'The proprietors of RonPaul.com say they reached out to the retired politicain and offered him RonPaul.org as a free gift, but if he "insisted" on owning RonPaul.com then they would sell it to him. There was a catch, though. It would be part of a "liberty package" with the site's 170,000 person mailing list for... wait for it... $250,000. They think the price is totally worth it: '"
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Ron Paul Asks UN For Help Geting Control of RonPaul.com Domain From Fans

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  • by theedgeofoblivious (2474916) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:42AM (#42858617)

    Free market, my ass.

    You hypocrite.

  • by Telecommando (513768) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:44AM (#42858639)

    They're all for "free market" economics until it actually impacts them personally. Then suddenly they want government intervention and special treatment.

    What a hypocrite.

  • by Redmancometh (2676319) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:45AM (#42858647)
    I actually liked Ron Paul right up to the point of reading this. Anyone who preaches smaller government, less control, more personal freedom, and a truly free economy and does this...Well that person is a hypocritical 2 faced..politician.
  • by vlm (69642) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:49AM (#42858679)

    Property rights are the foundation of all rights in a free society unless the property we're talking about are domain names that you feel are yours

    I think this is unintentionally very funny because the domain name is his name, which is presumably his property. Now if he was trying to steal "campaignforliberty.com" that would be an interesting argument assuming they weren't just domain squatters who registered well after the PR campaign started.

    If there is a lesson, don't start up a 3rd party site with a name consisting of nothing but the 1st party name. Even "unofficialsupportforronpaul.com" would have been more morally justifiable than just taking the dude's name and slapping a dotcom on the end.

  • by sumdumass (711423) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:52AM (#42858707) Journal

    Just because the function of ridding domains of squatters is at the UN does not mean the rest of the UN's operations or conduct is legit.

    Look at the LA cop thing in California in which the have shot up 3 separate scenes and wounded several completely innocent people trying to execute a criminal instead of arresting him and going to court for justice. I can talk about how much of a thug the cops are, how they are completely incompetent scared little bitches ignoring the constitutional right of due process hell bent on inflicting personal revenge on the ex cop who killed one of their own and claims to have information proving they were in the wrong for his termination and acted abhorrently in several criminal cases, but I would still call them to report my home was burglarized. That wouldn't be some giant conflict of interest or reversal of anything else I stood for..

  • by 10101001 10101001 (732688) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:52AM (#42858715) Journal

    Don't worry, Ron Paul is just demonstrate that he's a true Republican. Sure, he takes principled stands..until money is involved and he can get/save money. Of course, such was clear when your idea to make a smaller government is to join that government and do nothing effective for decades to actually shrink government. Maybe joining was some sort of a protest? Well, RMS protests against proprietary software and as much as people give him slack, they still see how it tries very hard to live by his code. But the simple truth is, a true sign of character is holding to your principles precisely when it's hardest to do so. But, that doesn't give one carte blanche to ignore them on one of the most unimportant things one can imagine, his vanity plate for the internet.

    So, I salute you, Ron Paul, for showing just how much you care about your facade.

  • by Soluzar (1957050) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:54AM (#42858731) Homepage
    At least one famous person shares my name. Which one of us owns the dot com rights?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:54AM (#42858733)

    Property rights are the foundation of all rights in a free society unless the property we're talking about are domain names that you feel are yours

    I think this is unintentionally very funny because the domain name is his name, which is presumably his property. Now if he was trying to steal "campaignforliberty.com" that would be an interesting argument assuming they weren't just domain squatters who registered well after the PR campaign started.

    If there is a lesson, don't start up a 3rd party site with a name consisting of nothing but the 1st party name. Even "unofficialsupportforronpaul.com" would have been more morally justifiable than just taking the dude's name and slapping a dotcom on the end.

    So you're saying there's only one person named Ron Paul in the entire world?

  • by h4rr4r (612664) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:54AM (#42858735)

    Why is this modded down?
    This is the absolute truth. He likes the free market until it impacts him. If he does not like the price he is free to not buy this product, but instead he wants some outside actor to force this person to give up their property.

    This is pretty common from what I see of libertarians.

  • by Sarten-X (1102295) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:54AM (#42858737) Homepage

    And that just about sums up my feelings, as well.

    Ron Paul's a populist politician. He's managed to paint the government as a corrupt agency of fat-cat Democrats, by ignoring the measurable good of government programs and focusing only on how much they cost. He's made the Federal Reserve a scapegoat for everything wrong with the economy, and thanks to the magic of psychology-driven Austrian economics, he can just forget about the economic problems before the Fed existed, because they were just so long ago.

    This is yet another chapter in the tale of Ron Paul's subtle hypocrisy. He'll complain about globalization and fight against having any global authorities interfering in private citizens' lives, yet he has no problem running to a global authority to interfere in other people's lives on his behalf.

    I'm thrilled the guy's retired (for now). Here's hoping it's permanent, and that his equally-populist son follows quickly.

  • by Jason Levine (196982) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:56AM (#42858749)

    How is the domain automatically his if it is his name? What if the domain was registered by someone else bearing the name "Ron Paul"? Would Politician Ron Paul be able to wrest control of the domain from the not-as-well-known Ron Paul based solely on name recognition? And what if not-as-well-known Ron Paul wanted to sell the domain name? Should he be limited in selling it to someone whose name is "Ron Paul" or can he sell it to anything (for example, a fan of politician Ron Paul).

    (Not saying that's what happened here. Just pointing out that having a name isn't the same thing as automatically having rights to a domain name with said name.)

  • by Brett Buck (811747) on Monday February 11, 2013 @10:58AM (#42858765)

    On the surface, Paul says a lot of things I would generally agree with. Once you dig for a while, you find a lot of stuff that is utterly loony/suicidal. The Pualbots are even more absurd.

            He loses for a reason.

  • by Kidbro (80868) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:09AM (#42858903)

    Not that I'm a libertarian (far from it), but I've never really gotten the impression that they hate trademark laws. This is (arguably) a trademark case.

  • by ceoyoyo (59147) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:13AM (#42858939)

    They're not squatters. They run an active web site which is about a public, political figure.

  • by pixelpusher220 (529617) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:15AM (#42858961)
    This isn't domain squatting. They've been actively using the site for multiple elections expressly to promote Ron Paul. These are *his* ardent supporters who did this on their own dime and if he wants to control the benefits of that...guess what, pay up. They aren't asking for millions, just a paltry 250K. Spread over 4 years over multiple people. It's hardly trying to 'cash in' on something.

    Ron Paul is both hypocritical here and right on the money. Which is that his libertarian views are that he's allowed to do whatever he wants...including suing people or running to governmental agencies for help.

    Libertarianism itself is hypocritical...and it's downright fun to watch the ardent supporters get a lesson in that...
  • by Chirs (87576) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:16AM (#42858973)

    He needs to control his brand, and to own it outright. Thus, he benefits not only from having ownership, but having his legal right made clear.

    Of course he benefits from having ownership...but that doesn't necessarily give him the right to take it away from the current owners. They bought the domain name, they built the site, they generated the traffic, and now he wants it arbitrarily transferred to him? That doesn't seem right.

  • by Sique (173459) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:18AM (#42859007) Homepage
    As Alfred Adler [wikipedia.org] once observed: It's easier to fight for your principles than to live according to them.
  • by h4rr4r (612664) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:19AM (#42859017)

    What you mean is he wants to use force to make someone give him their property.

    I disagree with the MikeRoweSoft.com thing even more. It was clearly nothing like microsoft.com. Anyone who would be confused by that would be too stupid to type.

  • by BasilBrush (643681) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:31AM (#42859165)

    But Microsoft isn't pretending to be a libertarian. This isn't about whether legislation or the power of the UN can get him the domain name without paying for it. It's whether Ron Paul is a hypocrite or not.

    And yes, he is being a hypocrite. He want's a governmental body to take someone else's property off them rather than buy it in a free market.

  • by moeinvt (851793) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:37AM (#42859229)

    "He loses for a reason."

    Several reasons. Most notable of which are the banking cartel, the MIC and their MSM mouthpieces.

    What distinguishes Dr. Paul from 99% of the other politicians out there is that he wanted the government and the executive branch in particular to be LESS powerful. He recognizes and embraces the fact that human beings are flawed. You might think he has some crazy ideas, but his primary idea is that people should not be able to force their ideas on you at the point of a gun.

    The only person you are going to agree with 100% of the time is yourself. What we should all agree on is that the power of government must be minimal in case some crazy guy or evil bastard gets elected.

    Instead, we have had a steady stream of people who have accumulated more and more power, thus creating the potential for catastrophic abuse. e.g. arbitrary detention and assassination of U.S. citizens.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:43AM (#42859297)

    While, yes, the counter argument, is a good one, as it's just his name and there was no other Ron Paul that they were representing.

    But even considering that, I don't know that we can side with Mr. Paul (whom I would love to share a beer with and discuss this issue). Domain name camping has been going on for some time with a few legal precedents and lots of gambling. In fact, with 170k mailing list participants one could argue the owners of this domain have considerable sweat equity in it. Under our existing capitalist system they deserve to be compensated for their effort.

    If they decided to oppose RonPaul in the coming election and inform their 170k following of his mistakes, would he then get the right to shut them down for not playing nice? When does the First Amendment kick in and the UN's rights become secondary? To the merit if his detractors "Old Ron Paul" would have said the First Amendment trumps any UN opinions. He should go back to being Old Ron Paul and write them a check and be done with it.

  • by NatasRevol (731260) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:48AM (#42859365) Journal

    Not that I'm arguing with the principle of what they're saying, but when your argument says:
    "And most people who remain in their right mind would have no problem doing a "whois" on the Domain Name..."
    don't really understand who 'most people' really are. Or why Ford (or anyone) might at least have a problem with what they did.

  • by TheSwift (2714953) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:50AM (#42859391)

    It would be foolish to judge the truths a man believes in by the apparent weakness or hypocrisy of that man.

    If a man claimed monogamy in marriage was good for society, but due to his own moral failure, had multiple partners, would we then conclude that adultery was best for all men?

    It would be best that we use our minds and experience to find truth and not look for the man who looks the best to decide what truth is best for us. Otherwise, we will just be sheep for the media to direct.

  • by LordLimecat (1103839) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:51AM (#42859407)

    Its modded down because its a broad generalization that cant possibly be made honestly unless he has actually see this behavior from a statistically significant number of libertarians. Its similar to BS like "All republicans are racist" (they arent), or "all Democrats are communist" (they arent), and should be modded down as such.

  • by nedlohs (1335013) on Monday February 11, 2013 @11:53AM (#42859431)

    How is it hypocritical for someone who proclaims that people should act in their own rational self interest to do something that is in their own self interest?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:14PM (#42859809)

    Because that's not what she believed, nor what the American right-wing Objectivists believe. It's a nice way of stating a subset of the actual belief, which is "screw everyone else, I got mine, and programs like Social Security and Medicare shouldn't exist at all".

    If you don't see the hypocrisy, then you are essentially a blind religious fanatic for this brand of extremist Libertarian thought.

  • by Sique (173459) on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:15PM (#42859845) Homepage
    No, it should belong to the Catholic Church, which does the most business under the "Madonna" label, by far exceeding the singer's revenue.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:17PM (#42859879)

    No one "fears" these hallucinations and masturbatory fantasies you call "ideas". We recognize them as the laughable fictions of the spoiled, the immature, and those with little experience with human interaction. Sometimes when you scream and cry to be taken seriously we find it upsetting and annoying and want to apply some constructive corporal punishment.

  • by pixelpusher220 (529617) on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:18PM (#42859899)

    are you saying it is internally inconsistent as a philosophy

    Yep, exactly what I'm saying.

    People who want small government don't understand that 'government' is how we resolve disputes between independent parties. Unless they're going to magically make the human race stop having 'disputes', government will always be around and be relatively large (assuming the populations that support them are likewise large).

    Desiring a more efficient/streamlined government would be reasonable, but mostly they aren't asking for that from what I've seen, both Libertarians and Republicans/Conservatives.

  • by Dishevel (1105119) on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:18PM (#42859905)

    The domain is being used exclusively for activities relating to Ron Paul the congressman from Texas. This is exactly the definition of cybersquatting.

    No.
    Cybersquatting [slashdot.org] is not what you think it is.

    From liked article.
    is registering, trafficking in, or using a domain name with bad faith intent to profit from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else. The cybersquatter then offers to sell the domain to the person or company who owns a trademark contained within the name at an inflated price.

    I do not see bad faith here. They created the site to help Ron Paul get elected. (Fail 1)
    They have a huge mailing list of people interested in hearing from Ron Paul. This list has value the asking price is probably not far from fair. (Fail 2)

    Ron Paul should stop being a bitch and work a deal with these people.
    Ron Paul runs to have something that people created to benefit him, that has inherent value that came from their work to be taken from them by an international organization that he believes is bad and should go away.
    Fuck Ron Paul.

  • by Gilmoure (18428) on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:25PM (#42860021) Journal

    Do as I say, not as I do.

  • by Gription (1006467) on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:32PM (#42860145)
    Back in the 90s the company owning the rights to the Archie comics went after "Veronica.org". A guy setup the site because he had a toddler named Veronica and he posted a couple pictures. It finally fell out in the guy's favor...
    http://news.cnet.com/2100-1023-220240.html [cnet.com]


    If being named the same as a site gave you rights, could you imagine the dust-up for johnsmith.com?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 11, 2013 @12:41PM (#42860269)

    Because she spent her entire life saying people who accepted help from the government (or anyone) were parasites.

    In the end, Ayn Rand because the kind of parasite she spent her life waging jihad against. Yet she never apologized or admitted she was wrong. She simply sponged up those Big Gubment welfare checks.

  • by tnk1 (899206) on Monday February 11, 2013 @01:03PM (#42860599)

    You know, if the government made me pay for a benefit, then I'm damn well going to use it. That doesn't mean that I think it should exist, but while it does and they are taking my money, I don't see what the issue is. Particularly since that benefit makes me pay them in lieu of what I might put aside for my own retirement.

  • by oxdas (2447598) on Monday February 11, 2013 @01:03PM (#42860607)

    The website clearly states that it is a "fansite" and not affiliated with Ron Paul. While they could do more to distance their site from Ron Paul, that is not what this dispute is about.

    On top of that, they are basically trying to extort money out of the man. Their motives are clearly to squat on the domain until they get a fat wad of cash.

    They have raised millions of dollars for Ron Paul and built him a supporter list of 170,000 people. He did not refuse the money when running his multiple campaigns despite knowing its origins. Did Ron Paul ask the website to cease its operations at any time in the last 5 years? Has Ron Paul offered to pay the costs to build and run the website and mailing list during that time? It sounds to me like Ron Paul knowingly benefitted from the site for a substantial period of time. I would characterize that as, at the very least, implicit consent.

    I think it is quite a stretch to call this situation cybersquatting.

  • by fermion (181285) on Monday February 11, 2013 @01:10PM (#42860739) Homepage Journal
    The possible irony has nothing to do with the free markets. It has to do with his view of the UN.

    For example

    Its global planners fully intend to expand the UN into a true world government, complete with taxes, courts, and a standing army. This is not an alarmist statement;

    So the UN is trying to destroy the US. This is not alarmist, simple the facts

    we either follow the Constitution or submit to UN global governance

    If we follow the UN, we are not being faithful to the constitution of the US

    As such, the Charter is neither politically nor legally binding upon the American people or government. The UN has no authority to make “laws” that bind American citizens

    Even if the UN says the domain is his, the UN has no legal authority to make it his, at least in the US.

    Like any government or quasi-government body, the UN is rife with corruption and backroom deals. Worst of all, it serves as a forum for rampant anti-Americanism. Perhaps the time has finally come when more Americans will choose to rethink our participation.

    So by going to the UN, he might as well be asking Al Qaeda for help. He is hob nobbing with terrorist who are against America.

    Ron Paul is the worst kind of Texas Politicians. He will do whatever his friends want, no matter what it does to the budget. His friends wanted a million dollar bus stop so he gave it to them. His friends wanted a million dollar game room so their kids could play video games instead of train for the military like they promised, so he gave it them. His fishing buddies wanted the government to pay to advertise their seafood products, so, you guessed it, he passed a billed transferring tax money directly into their pockets. And of course when the nuclear energy lobby come a courtin', he is there to give them as much as they want, even though Texas ratepayers end up paying for everything all over again.

    As far as the free market, instead of letting firms decide what infrastructure is best for them, he mandates from washington what they need. He spent 2.5 redeveloping one the small towns in his district, instead of letting the free market decide if it was vialble. He spent 8 million redeveloping fishing pier instead of letting private firms take the risk and reap the reward. He spent 18 million on commercial waterways, instead of letting the private sector decide and pay for what it needed. And of course I believe an empty terminal for cruise lines is in his district.

    The reality is that if he were not such a crackpot none of this would matter. Just like everyone else he greedy and does not want to pay a reasonable price for property he considers to be already his. But he is a person who has used extreme language to win election and raise funds, over $40 million in 2012. That he would now validate the authority of UN is quite troubling.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 11, 2013 @01:33PM (#42861199)

    I think it's really coming to this for a lot of people, myself included. The system is broken, but eventually I'm the fool for not taking advantage of it like everyone else, especially when I'm paying into it. I used to say, "No, I won't take advantage of it." Now it's closer to, "Fuck it. Everyone else is getting some, why shouldn't I?"

  • by Joe Snipe (224958) on Monday February 11, 2013 @01:40PM (#42861305) Homepage Journal

    So that's fine, use it. And keep complaining about said benefits existence, it's a valid argument. But by taking those benefits, you can no longer argue that those who do take advantage of said benefits are a drain on our society without being a drain yourself.

  • by interkin3tic (1469267) on Monday February 11, 2013 @01:45PM (#42861385)
    If you speak out against something then partake of it, you're still undermining your own credibility unless you have a damn good reason why you're forced to.
  • by tnk1 (899206) on Monday February 11, 2013 @03:28PM (#42863199)

    Saying it over and over again doesn't make it true.

    If I beat you up for your lunch money, and then offered to give it back to you, would you go without lunch despite the fact that you are of the belief that you shouldn't have your lunch money taken away in the first place? Hardly.

    Of all the things to beat up Ayn Rand about, it seems like people like to flock to the weakest criticism just so they can use the word "hypocrisy". For that matter, hypocrisy isn't even a logical fallacy. You can be a complete hypocrite and still be correct with your assertion, it is just problematic to use yourself as an exemplar of your ideas in action if you are. If a killer preaches to you about the value of life, you'd probably think he was a hypocrite, but I doubt that you would then think that he's wrong about his assertion.

    Ayn Rand could be a poor Objectivist, which is debatable, but that doesn't mean Objectivism is wrong.

The unfacts, did we have them, are too imprecisely few to warrant our certitude.

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