(WASHINGTON) -- Vice President Joe Biden is a passionate guy -- even when it comes to the importance of protecting intellectual property.
At Friday’s Creativity Conference, organized by the Motion Picture Association of America in partnership with Microsoft and ABC, he wondered out loud about the difference between stealing physical objects as opposed to intellectual ones.
“What the hell? What the heck’s the difference?” Biden asked rhetorically.
“They’d never steal a shipment of a thousand automobiles,” he said in reference to intellectual property pirates. “What they’re stealing is much more valuable than the commodities we ship.”
A self-proclaimed “White House optimist” when it comes to innovation, Biden also spoke about America’s historical ties to innovation and what policy makers should focus on to maintain the country’s creative culture.
According to the vice president, an “overwhelming and constant stream of immigration” is a crucial part of the American “black box” of innovation.
Biden also demonstrated his own creativity by referring to the poem, “Easter,” by Irish poet W.B. Yeats in allusion to the changing global economic relations.
“All’s changed, changed utterly,” he said, quoting Yeats. “A terrible beauty has been born.”
Biden also poked fun at his penchant for the poem, which he also quoted upon receiving the Diplomatic Leadership Award in 2013, by explaining that he frequently quotes Irish poets “because they’re the best poets.”
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