FICTIONWell, it happened, it finally happened.
The U.S. Government Patent Office awarded a patent to a major pharmaceutical company for breathing, breathing being a function of health, and therefore subject to the field of medicine, and therefore the business of their company, Wheezing and Gasping Division.
This company now owns breathing and licenses it worldwide. If you breathe, you pay royalties or they revoke your license to breathe. It's in the contract and it's the law, thanks to The Supreme Court of the United States, Profit Division.
This was the culmination of a long trend beginning with owning certain strains of plants in a proprietary way, seed-selling and also ownership of breeds of animals.
Then, followed the ownership of land.
Then, of artworks.
Then, ownership of information. Secret information. Intellectual Property.
Then, followed ownership of the genome, of gene segments, alleles, traits, mad scientist experiments in the name of Free Enterprise.
It was a natural next step for a society bred to believe that everything has a price, that everything -- absolutely everything -- could be owned including including water, air, and the functions of the human organism.
Naturally, in service to the health of "the economy" (the interests of business and profit), The Supreme Court (Profit Division) ruled that the right of the individual to breathe is subordinate to the right of Free Enterprise and Business to take over the world and make a profit -- if they can do so within the law that business profiteers helped write.
The time to make breathing a profit-center had come and the attorneys knew how -- with a little help from their friends.
The ship is moving fast, the Captain is mad, and unknown shoals lie ahead.
Are Democracy's last gasps in the hands of demented monomaniacs?
Friends stay tuned.