Apple CEO Tim Cook meets with U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch in Washington D.C.

“Apple CEO Tim Cook visited at least one Capitol Hill lawmaker while in Washington this week,” Julian Hattem reports for The Hill. “Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) met with Cook on Tuesday to discuss the veteran senator’s technology agenda, his office said.”

“Hatch has been a supporter of tech-focused policy issues in Congress and has tried to prioritize a number of items ahead of next year’s GOP takeover of the Senate,” Hattem reports. “For one, that means dealing with patent “trolls,” which companies claim buy up vague patent licenses with the intent of filing lawsuits against others to extract costly settlements. The suits lead to an estimated $60 billion annual hit to the economy, critics argue.”

Hattem reports, “Hatch was a driving force behind the Senate’s effort to pass patent reform earlier this year, and the issue seems likely to emerge early next year.”

Read more in the full article here.

19 Comments

    1. Senator Hatch is a mainline Reagan Conservative and in fact spoke frequently during the 1980 Republican Primaries as the personal request of Ronald Reagan himself. RINO? not in a million years.

      As a young College student our US Government Professor was either the state Republican Chair or Treasurer and offered us extra points on our semester grade if we went to observe the caucus up close which was being held on a Saturday a couple of blocks off of campus.

      I got to meet (later President) GHW Bush, Dubya, Jeb, Howard Baker, Orrin Hatch, Congressman John Anderson, Governor John Connelly, Congressman Phil Crane and others. Not bad for an afternoon’s work. Senator Hatch was there on behalf of Ronald Reagan who was scheduled to speak, but had to cancel at the last minute.

      Ronald Reagan did not ask RINOs to speak to Republicans on his behalf. I am no conservative, but Senator Hatch- while a highly partisan Republican- is unlike the tea baggers and actually tries to accomplish government in concert with all of the membership. He is not anyone I would vote for, but is a decent and honorable man.

  1. “The suits lead to an estimated $60 billion annual hit to the economy”.

    Spin, spin, spin.

    How can anything be a “hit” to the economy. Is that a bad thing? By definition, economy means circulation of money. Patent trolls, evidently, contribute to the circulation of money by taking it out of one pocket and putting it into another.

    I wonder how big a “hit” the government is to the economy?

        1. It does. The money goes in the pockets of worthless patent trolls who prevent worthwhile companies from cashing in on their achievements and using that cash for further R&D.

        2. When a corporation spends money on goods and services it creates profits and jobs for businesses that supply the goods and services. When a corporation spends money to settle a patent dispute it does not create jobs or legitimate profits for patent troll. The troll has done nothing to earn those profits, and it probably employs very few people. Such a settlement serves only to concentrate wealth in the hands of non-productive people. In that sense it is a hit to the economy. Dollars spent for goods and services resonate throughout the economy. A dollar spent in that fashion is multiplied many times over as it bounces around from business to business and individual to individual. A dollar spent to pay off a patent troll is dead money going nowhere.

          1. When *anybody* spends money on goods and services, it creates profits and jobs for the economy. In that sense, the patent troll is no different than you or me when I get a paycheck. We save some and we spend some. It certainly isn’t dead money going nowhere – any more than it is when you and I squirrel money away, something Apple does, too – to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars.

            I’m no fan of patent trolls, and the settlements they receive certainly isn’t as productive in their accounts as it would be in the hands of innovative producers, but I wouldn’t go so far as to call it “dead money”.

            1. Both: The money is taken from the industrious and given to the indolent, from the producer to the parasite, from the brilliant to the bilious, — and I’ll bet a fair part of that swag EXITS the US economy, headed to Switzerland, Barbados, etc. (at least the part of the swag that doesn’t find its way into East Texas judicial robes)

        3. In this context, I believe “hit to the economy” refers to the unproductive use of money that must nevertheless be spent by innovative companies, such as Apple, to defend themselves against essentially baseless lawsuits, or what some might call “lawsuit lotto” — if you win, you win big.

  2. Before dealing with Washington politicians, lobbyists, judges like Koh and Cote etc Tim Cook should brush up by watching “Board Walk Empire” . You learn more about how things get really done than a Harvard law degree…
    🙂

    (seriously, google which makes one third apple’s profits spent 4 times Apple on political lobbying in 2013 … )

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.