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: A couple weeks ago while I was watching Enterprise, there was this horrible cheesy ad for some coalition of biotech companies. It had children describing what biotech means to them, or some such. Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel, but surely just before you resort to patriotism, you put children in your ads and see if that works.

I'm not a big fan of biotech companies, mainly due to their love of what amounts to software patents (in a realm, natch, in which the relevant information actually does want to be free, or at least widely copied). But when it comes to biotech as a concept, I am one of its biggest fans who doesn't work for a biotech company or on a farm (which is a sort of applied biotech company).

Which leaves me with a dilemma; I can find no real political way to express my dissatisfaction with genome patents without signing onto a general anti-biotech platform which, whether it leans politically left or right, regards it as unethical to change a genome through means of genetic engineering (though not through selective breeding, for the pragmatic reason that anything anyone eats is the end result of thousands of years of that). This is not always the stated policy of such political groups, but it's always the subtext, and I don't want to support that subtext. It's as though one could only mark one's opposition to software patents by joining a society that claimed that it was unethical to modify software.

I'm probably wrong and there's some like-minded group of technocrat hippies like myself who have formed a pro-biotech anti-genome-patent coalition. If so, I'll probably hear about it soon. I just hope it's not a front group for something.


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