Charles Koch Network Attacks Shelter-in-Place Policies


AMERICANS FOR PROSPERITY, the pro-corporate pressure group founded and funded by billionaire industrialist Charles Koch, wants employees to return to work despite desperate pleas from public health officials that people should stay home as much as possible to help contain the spread of the coronavirus.

Source: Charles Koch Network Attacks Shelter-in-Place Policies

Anti-Gay Views Caused Andy Biggs to Vote Against Coronavirus Stimulus


ARIZONA REPUBLICAN Rep. Andy Biggs, one of the 40 lawmakers who voted against the coronavirus stimulus bill, said he did so in part because the legislation included paid sick leave benefits for domestic partnerships.

Source: Anti-Gay Views Caused Andy Biggs to Vote Against Coronavirus Stimulus

Firm wielding Theranos patents asks judge to block coronavirus test [Updated] | Ars Technica

Back in 2018, the disgraced biotech company Theranos sold its patent portfolio to Fortress Investment Group, a division of Softbank. Now two of those patents have wound up in the hands of a little-known firm called Labrador Diagnostics—and Labrador is suing a company called BioFire Diagnostics that makes medical testing equipment.And not just any medical testing equipment: BioFire recently announced it had developed three tests for COVID-19 using its hardware—tests that are due out later this month. But Labrador is asking a Delaware federal court to block the company from using its technology—presumably including the new coronavirus tests. As Stanford patent scholar Mark Lemley puts it, “this could be the most tone-deaf IP suit in history.”

Source: Firm wielding Theranos patents asks judge to block coronavirus test [Updated] | Ars Technica

Volunteers 3D-Print Unobtainable $11,000 Valve For $1 To Keep Covid-19 Patients Alive; Original Manufacturer Threatens To Sue | Techdirt

Business Insider Italia explains that even though the original manufacturer was unable to supply the part, it refused to share the relevant 3D file with Fracassi to help him print the valve. It even went so far as to threaten him for patent infringement if he tried to do so on his own. Since lives were at stake, he went ahead anyway, creating the 3D file from scratch. According to the Metro article, he produced an initial batch of ten, and then 100 more, all for free. Fracassi admits that his 3D-printed versions might not be very durable or re-usable. But when it’s possible to make replacements so cheaply — each 3D-printed part costs just one euro, or roughly a dollar — that isn’t a problem. At least it wouldn’t be, except for that threat of legal action, which is also why Fracassi doesn’t dare share his 3D file with other hospitals, despite their desperate need for these valves. And if you’re wondering why the original manufacturer would risk what is bound to be awful publicity for its actions, over something that only costs one euro to make, a detail in the Business Insider Italia article provides an explanation: the official list price for a single valve is 10,000 euros — about $11,000.

Source: Volunteers 3D-Print Unobtainable $11,000 Valve For $1 To Keep Covid-19 Patients Alive; Original Manufacturer Threatens To Sue | Techdirt

Gaetz Voted Against Florida Paid Sick Leave. He’s Using It in Congress.


REP. MATT GAETZ, R-Fla., decided to self-quarantine this week after coming in contact with an individual who tested positive for a novel coronavirus, which causes the disease Covid-19, at the Conservative Political Action Conference late last month.But Gaetz’s decision to take time away from his job at Congress without the fear of losing pay or being fired is a right few Americans share. In fact, Gaetz voted to prohibit Florida residents from sharing that right.

Source: Gaetz Voted Against Florida Paid Sick Leave. He’s Using It in Congress.