@DaveWill2: Technically, he's correct. Unfortunately the legal system being what it is, it all becomes a bit random. In the eyes of many who'd find themselves in a jury, the mere existence of a patent is seen as evidence it has some sort of validity (you wouldn't have even started the other thread if that weren't the case!) so the jury is more likely to find in favour of the patent holder than to dismiss it on the grounds the patent should never have existed.

The whole Eolas patent, for example, was something that should have been dismissed as obvious and invalid and yet that's not what happened when put in front of a jury.

Of course the more cynical amongst us might suggest that encouraging bogus patents by pretty much accepting anything is nothing more than a shameless attempt to bring in cash without thought for how that affects innovation. I'm sure the fact that the patent office clamping down on silly patents and rejecting them outright straight away would probably reduce submissions and thus income is entirely unrelated.