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back to article The Pirate Bay admits links with right-wing benefactor

A spokesman for the Swedish torrent tracker The Pirate Bay, has admitted on Swedish tv that their servers and broadband bandwidth were financed by Carl Lundström, one of the alleged sponsors of Swedish far-right political party Sweden Democrats. "We needed the money," spokesman Tobias Andersson told Bert Karlsson, a former …

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Anonymous Coward

Not surprising

The 'far-right' (who tend to differ from 'the right' by being left-wing in everyway except their policies of native preference) tend to be supporters of free speech and free communication, arguably because in most places they aren't given a platform.

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The Pirate Bay have always been open with this

At least for Swedish file sharers, this is not news. TPB admitted this more than a year ago, and they probably didn't try to hide this fact from anyone before that either.

Note that Bert Karlsson is a right wing nut, a luddite, and a record label owner that frequently makes stupid statements about patents and copyright. To try to link The Pirate Bay (which are largely synonymous with file sharing, and positively so by the Swedish public) with right wingers (which are negatively regarded by the majority) is one of his favourite stupid statements. Again - the Sweden Democrats are far more left than Bert's own old party, New Democracy.

The bottom line is that from whoever TPB accepts money, it doesn't really change them. Many of the people behind TPB are commies. Some of them have a history in left wing movements, and some of them have changed opinions and became rightwingers, but NONE of them are nationalist or racist.

There.

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Right-wing, left-wing, chicken-wing, whatever!

I don't care if TPB is supported by Daleks. They oppose the MPAA and RIAA, and that makes them an ally in the fight against pigopolists.

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Anonymous Coward

A Little Reasearch

Who cares where our piratey friends' allegiances lie, as long as they keep providing the sweet, sweet warez?

It's not like they're forcing any opinions on us.

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Silver badge

Nationalist =/= racist!

I'm always put on edge when people equate nationalism with racism, even if it's only unintentional or very slight. Nationalism at its core is the belief in the soverignty of the nation state and the rights of the people to determine that state's destiny. none of this is racist by any definition. Of course it's true that nationalism can be used as a base for racism, but then so can socialism, or capitalism, or internationalism, or any other ism you care to mention. Some people will use just about anything as an excuse for being petty and bigoted.

Being politically right-wing is rather an interesting experience some days. Rent-seeking, which is what the *AA and their ilk seek, is anathaema to the libertarian right and the free-market capitalist. A free market will not survive in the face of a rent-seeking monopoly and the idea of paying multiple times for the same 'item' makes most libertarians reach for their guns (though that probably isn't saying much). It's perfectly logical for both groups to support file sharing and freedom of speech in general, because both groups have a vested interest in reducing the power of any monopoly in order to increase the relative power of the commons.

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Extremists?

I think it's fair to say that all the people at The Pirate Bay qualify under that title. Doesn't make it a bad thing.

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Erm

While I admire the robust pro-TPB sentiments here, I have to say it would bother me quite a bit if they actually did turn out to be backed by Daleks.

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Re: Extremists?

Extreme? Maybe. Insane? Probably. Awesome? Definately.

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Idealists

Any kind of nutter or extremist who supports your own prejudices is actually an idealist. The world needs more idealists.

As for Nationalism, defending your home and values used to be an admirable calling, before so much of the world had to to it against America.

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Anonymous Coward

Yes, extremists.

Sverige Demokraterna are an extreme-right party, with links to various fascist & neo-nazi groups in Sweden.

(have a quick look at the pic at the bottom of this page: http://www.antifa.se/index.php?p=1&id=123 )

Without knowing what (if anything) was the other end of the deal, it's difficult to make any conclusion. Appears to be because of an former work connection, and I agree with mirshafie about TPB members.

"The 'far-right' (who tend to differ from 'the right' by being left-wing in everyway except their policies of native preference) tend to be supporters of free speech and free communication"

Accept for blacks, jews, gays, trade union members, etc. etc. (I don't believe someone posted this comment) When the extreme right complain about freedom of speech, what they're complaining about is that they can't spout their racist, homophobic, holocaust-denying hate. A quick flick through history shows what happens to freedom of info when the extreme right (or other authoritarian groups) take power...

"Who cares where our piratey friends' allegiances lie, as long as they keep providing the sweet, sweet warez?"

I do. Probably lots of other people do too. You should too.

@ Graham: Nation states are intrinsically racist. Unregulated market economies (what you refer to as "free"-market) leads to monopolies and beasts such as the RIAA. Aren't all you 'libertarian' right wingers supposed to be hiding in your survival bunkers?

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Anonymous Coward

Have you ever wondered...

Have you ever wondered what sort of music Daleks listen to?

This has concerned me a lot, at least since they became secret intergalactic financial backers of TPB.

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Anonymous Coward

I can't believe some of you people...

Some of you posting here are just insane. I mean it is just incredible how compromised the morality of some people is. You'll accept help from any source, even from the far-right, so you can go on breaking copyright. Actually on reflection it seems consistent, that since you have absolutely no regard for the property of others it seems only logical you'll accept money from neo-Nazis. You seem to forget that it's only the left that has ever seriously argued for any reform of property rights. The fact that pirate bay are the biggest collection of scumbags on the planet, hiding behind free speech bullshit to make money from piracy, just shows how naive and stupid some people are.

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Ben
Silver badge

RE: Have you ever wondered...

Val Doonican sings Napalm Death ?

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Political Circles

The old left-wing / right-wing thing is highly misleading. As has been pointed out before me, in reality the so called "extreme left" viz. anarcho-syndicalist and "extreme right" viz. libertarian viewpoints have a lot in common.

Most people would put my politics somewhere to the left of Tony Benn; my best mate on my Politics degree course was Henry Mayhew, son of the then Attorney General, whose politics were somewhat separated from my own on the traditional scale; in reality we met up around the back of the political circle, agreed on a number of matters and used to delight in seminar terrorism, ganging up on all the lily-livered wets of whichever persuasion, meandering around convictionless in the centre.

Whilst "Mayhem" and myself have undoubtedly led fuller, funner lives (despite his doing his best to kill us a couple of times when I was teaching him to drive in an old Austin A40), unfortunately it's the other lot that have ended up running the country ;)

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Extremists?

"@ Graham: Nation states are intrinsically racist. Unregulated market economies (what you refer to as "free"-market) leads to monopolies and beasts such as the RIAA. Aren't all you 'libertarian' right wingers supposed to be hiding in your survival bunkers?"

While I can see the point, albeit very far-fetched, you make about nation states, I am left wondering how you propose regulating any market without them. Sure, you could argue that the whole world should fall under one government (Trotzkist, by any chance, are you?) but this would only mean that there's now but one nation state and it has full monopoly, probably with the abuses to match.

How a free market would lead to government-mandated and supported "beasts" to regulate the market is beyond me. Perpaps that is why you used parentheses around "free", in which case however you are using a straw man argument; Libertarians do not propose a "free" market but a free market.

As for survival bunkers; since I live three meters below sea-level, I have given up on the idea of living in a hole in the ground. I would reccommend you do the same.

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Lies, damn lies, statistics and Antifa

While witholding judgement about the parties involved, I would caution against believing too much of what the Antifa posts. They are a politically (Left-wing) motivated group with a thinly-veiled socialist agenda. Try, if you are so inclined, to join them in their fight against Fascism and state your motivations to be of a Libertarian nature... You will find out quickly that to them being a non-racist, non-fascist (just for those who dont know their political movements) Libertarian s paramount to being a racist and fascist in disguise, Capitalism, to them, equates to all those things and they will grapple at any straw to find links and connections.

In the past their reporting has cost people their jobs (in some cases because they chose the very narrow medium of the employer's telephone connection as their avenue of choice for said reporting) while it was fairly easy to figure out that the accusations levelled were actually baseless.

An example; Performing in the same line-up at a three-day festival with a band that has printed a quote by Julius Evola in their liner notes was enough to get a gig cancelled using threats of violence.

Not a credible source, therefore.

But even liars get it right sometimes, so, like I said: I am witholding judgement.

Meanwhile: Stealing deffinitely is NOT in line with Libertarian beliefs, anmd Libertarians who support thefth are misguided. (Just to counter some remark earlyer on this forum.)

I think the Pirate Bay is on thin ice, morally. But hey; sweet sweet warez, right? (sarcasm intended.)

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Silly and/or disingenuous

Let's see, silly or disingenuous?

> While I can see the point, albeit very far-fetched, you make about nation

> states, I am left wondering how you propose regulating any market without

> them.

This one is silly. I can only assume that you misunderstood his point, and probably not deliberately either.

He didn't say that nations should be done away with. He was arguing that nationalism, the idea that your nation is somehow better than all other nations, is a bad thing, because nations are inherently racist. This is clearly, to him, something to guard against. I would agree.

> How a free market would lead to government-mandated and supported

> "beasts" to regulate the market is beyond me.

And this is either disingenuous or you have no understanding of how markets work.

Totally unregulated (no patents, no copyright, no government protection of any kind) capitalism, of the kind that the libertarian fringe worship, leads almost immediately to huge monopolies. Any large company can, by and large, produce things cheaper than a small one, and thus any product created by a small business can be freely copied (verbatim, in this scenario) by any large business. Plus, of course, without various 'anticompetitive' (according to libertarians) laws and practices, large companies can very easily force smaller ones out of business. ('You may not sell raw materials to anyone without asking us first, or you'll lose us as a customer.' And so forth.)

There's your "free" market.

-fred

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Lies, damn lies and slogans

"Let's see, silly or disingenuous?"

Let's see: Ad hominem or ... let's stick with Ad hominem.

"This one is silly. I can only assume that you misunderstood his point, and probably not deliberately either."

If I misunderstood his point, then he should use more than one line to make it. But on the whole, I think I did get the point.

"He didn't say that nations should be done away with. He was arguing that nationalism, the idea that your nation is somehow better than all other nations, is a bad thing, because nations are inherently racist. This is clearly, to him, something to guard against. I would agree."

You get all that from that one line? Wow. All I got was: "Nation states are bad, mmmkay."

Anyway; If nations are inherently racist, which is far fetched but debatable, then either we do away with them or we accept this racism and by implication agree that not all racism is bad.

Given the context of the remark, I'm forced to conclude that he is proposing the former, not the latter.

"And this is either disingenuous or you have no understanding of how markets work."

Let us assume that I do know how markets work. Let us also assume that an Appeal to Ridicule sortof annoys me.

"Totally unregulated (no patents, no copyright, no government protection of any kind) capitalism"

a) The "no patents, no copyright" bit applies only to a portion of Libertarians, certainly not all.

b) Yes, there would be government protection of some kind; against agression and fraud. (At least, according to the majority opinion amongst Libertarians.) Agression meaning the whole gamut from theft to murder.

I hope you will forgive me for not debating a Straw Man.

"of the kind that the libertarian fringe worship, leads almost immediately to huge monopolies. Any large company can, by and large, produce things cheaper than a small one, and thus any product created by a small business can be freely copied (verbatim, in this scenario) by any large business. Plus, of course, without various 'anticompetitive' (according to libertarians) laws and practices, large companies can very easily force smaller ones out of business. ('You may not sell raw materials to anyone without asking us first, or you'll lose us as a customer.' And so forth.)"

You are begging the question here, big time. While there is some merit to your assertions, they are a gross simplification of economic theory, one conveniently geared towards proving your point. If this was all that it took, then why do corporations today resort to government aid such as having indigenous peoples removed from promising oil fields by the military or lobbying for stricter laws on file sharing? I would think they would have all this great power to simply outcompete their opposers, right?

It's going too far to debate a few centuries worth of economic and philosophical thought here, suffices to say that things are not as simple as you put them. Who would have thought, economics is just like any other field of science in this regard.

But to get back on track here; I never actually defended the free market, I pointed out inaccuracies and contradictions in statements. I will admit to being a free-market advocate, but that is not the point here. No matter how much you are trying to make this debate about me, I merely pointed out that the RIAA and such are not possible without a nation state (or simmilar construct) to back them up; no courts == no lawsuits.

"There's your "free" market."

I never proposed a "free" market. If I would propose any type of market, it would be a free market; without the superfluous punctuation.

David.

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Silver badge

Depends how you define nationalism, doesn't it?

Is nationalism merely the idea that your nation is indefinably better than everyone elses? I suppose if you want to be obtuse you can say that, and then rest on your laurels and get the adulation and praise of your coterie of like-minded chums. People who say 'nationalism is racism' and the like tend to sit in this little pile, but then so do people who genuinely believe that their country is better, right or wrong. You can believe that, or you could examine why some people believe their nation is better than others.

Now I, for instance, believe that great britain was once a great nation that produced and spread great ideas in science, engineering, democracy and philosphy amongst others. Often these ideas may have been born elsewhere, but they were nurtured here and spread out across the world much further than by any other country, by choice or accident. Therefore the ideal of this country, the ideas that are behind its existence, are what I believe in. It seldom lives up to those ideals anymore but the hope is always there.

Nationalism is also the belief in the sovereignty of the nation state. The idea that a nation should be able to define and extend its will at the behest of its demos, or the exercise of the will of the people of that nation. Unfortunately, as you may have noticed f you've studied history, such beliefs and even such language can be distorted to an amazing degree by Bad People, but that is not an exclusive artefact of nationalism by any stretch of the imagination. Ideas are powerful tools and can be abused when placed in the wrong hands. As the idea of nationalism was used as a crutch by the nazis and other fascists across the world, so was marxim used by lenin and stalin, pol pot and others. Shintoism, which is an all-encompasing system of beliefs and concepts far beyond our limited idea of 'religion', was abused by the japanese military junta during world war 2. Name any political system or idea and I can give you an example of people who used that idea to create hell on earth.

As for the libertarians, while I like thier ideals I'm not one, simply because I can't afford the mountain for my bunker. ;) But seriously, I expect I am more libertarian than I realise but less than others. Each to his own, but stay off my damn lawn while you're at it, y'hear?

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Anonymous Coward

Let's face it. The structures supporting (or controlling) our nations are no longer effective.

Gentlemen,

Let's face it. The current structures that have been supporting (or controlling) our nations are no longer effective.

Telephony: Instead of paying hefty phone bills from government linked companies, we pay Skype or call directly via the Internet. Even corporations are considering using such softwares.

Software: Instead of paying unreasonable amounts of money for applications, we are using more and more open source. We even threaten big playes with Open Source moves if we don't get good discounts on their products.

Religion, Muslims (I am one (obviously a non-terrorist one), sunnis and shyias seem to be killing each other for non religious reasons.

Social: In many sides of the world, people is voting for new leadership. they are looking for new ideas. Extreme right seems to have extreme left thoughts

Nukes, India, Pakistan, Iran and North Korea continue their Nuclear exercises...

MP3s. I've even heard that recording labels give less money to the artists when using MP3s than when using CDs. then who's stealing who? What about the recent Apple shif in music sharing strategy. What's the point of protecting a file when you can easily burn it into a music CD and then back to MP3? or what about only playing files? There is always a source and even if we have to plug the speakers back to a tape recorder, we will do it, it is in our nature. We always seek shortcuts and ways to bypass slow and complicated regulations that always seem to benefit one single party.

With the Internet, things are changing way too fast. Somehow I feel it is too late to stop change. It is time to embrace it or we will die fighting it.

Albert Eintein once said, "The significant problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them."

He was damn right!

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Anonymous Coward

This is not about free speach!

Anyone who associates Pirate Bay with free speach is being, at best, disingenuous (at worst, deceptive).

PB has bog-all to do with free speach. It exists for the sole reason of facilitating the theft of intellectual property.

Now, we can likely agree that the terms under which that property are officially distributed are troubling, restrictive, harmful, etc. BUT theft is not an appropriate response -- BOYCOTTING the material is one appropriate response, as is lobbying for legislative and judicial restraints on the producers.

[ The RIAA and MPAA etc may have more money than you or I, but they don't have more votes! ]

So what do we have here? We have a political organization funding people who facilitate and advocate theft. Yet if that organization was in power, they could establish regulations prohibiting unduly restrictive restrictions on intellectual property. Thus, the fact that they fund an accessory to theft suggests that they know they'll never be in power. Hence we can conclude that both PB AND Sweden Democracy are anti-establishment, reactionary, sociopathic organizations.

That said, it's not a particularly serious problem: PB will be closed down, because they've no legal or other leg to stand on, and Sweden Democracy will self-destruct, because they're not a credible alternative (they may be a credible non-alternative, but that's a different animal).

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