“Oh, we just need to do away with intellectual property rights of all kinds, in order to bring about the panacea of a sharing economy where everybody gets everything for free.” There’s your argument, carried to its absurd conclusion. If an author’s work is earning money, who should participate in that happy event? The author, her heirs and assigns, or someone completely uninvolved who hasn’t in any way contributed to the value of the work? Peddle that seltzer somewheres else, I’m a social capitalist.
Also in his day, if you adjust for inflation and substitute corporate sponsorships for the royal patronage of Paganini’s era, he still made more money than Eddie Van Halen, (maybe not more than Valerie Bertinelli) but he was the very prototype of the modern rock star; lionized by men, adored by swooning, fainting women. His performances so passionate, people tried to have him banned. He was, not to put too fine a point on it, bigger than Elvis. Why do people insist on using the most unimaginably atypical musicians as examples? Paganini is irrelevant to today’s blue collar musicians who today are being offered the same $300 for the same bar gig in the same bar as in 1977, when a single $300 gig could keep a six piece band on the road for a week. Today it’s $600 a day to keep a band on the road, and that doesn’t include per diem and a vegan meal for the drummer.