Bribery crackdown profits lawyers & hurts business, The Oracle of Silicon Valley

May 17th, 2010 | By | Category: This morning's reading

Morning Reading, selected articles of interest from various publications.

How Federal Crackdown on Bribery Hurts Business And Enriches Insiders –
[…] A former prosecutor, to be sure, does not work on the defense of the same case he had as a government lawyer. But there is nothing to stop prosecutors from ginning up cases that will feed the lawyers who used to have their jobs or from looking forward to a payday in the private sector that will be made possible by their busy successors at Justice.

Many of the 150 pending cases will probably end with so-called deferred prosecution agreements. These involve the government threatening to bring an indictment against a company–which could effectively put the firm out of business–unless it agrees to adhere to certain practices. This hammer gives the feds immense power–for one thing, they don’t have to prove their legal theories of bribery in court. […]
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Lina’s comment: Amazing tale of ridiculous regulations, insane litigation and loss of common sense – all hurting business and prosperity.

Tim O’ Reilly, The Oracle of Silicon Valley –
[…] O’Reilly never raised outside capital; he funded his projects through profits. “There is a wonderful rigor in free-market economics,” he wrote in an early company manual. “When you have to prove the value of your ideas by persuading other people to pay for them, it clears out an awful lot of woolly thinking.” Just in case anyone was worried the boss had lost his touchy-feely touch, he went on to compare free-market economics with the poetry of Alexander Pope.

Like almost everything O’Reilly Media has done since, the fortuitous decision to enter the book business — which coincided with the rise of the personal computer and, therefore, an explosion in the market for computer books — happened thanks to the founder’s observational acuity and a series of happy accidents.[…]
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