Tuesday, April 7, 2009
We recently asked our readers to submit possible topics for discussion, and we received numerous responses. We've posted six of them thus far. Here is the seventh:
"We have a number of anti-trust laws on the books, including the Sherman and Clayton Acts. However, quite a few private sector business monopolies or "near-monopolies" exist. In fact, some would argue that the Justice Department's enforcement of these laws changed in recent years permitting mergers of previously huge enterprises.
"Consider such things as local cable service; Microsoft's virtual monopoly on computer operating systems; and Monsanto's influence with respect to seed used for food (the article about which you can view in the comments to Post No. 96a). There is also some concern today about the few companies which control our media outlets, and the growing size of Google.
"Some have argued that by de-regulating certain industries, we allowed them to grow so large, and become so interwoven with the general economy, that they became "too big to fail' considering the potential impact on the US and world economies.
"Here's the question. Should government intervene at any point into the business dealings of private industry, and if so, at what point and to what extent?"
It must be kept in mind that there are some economic systemic arguments for monopolies.
We'd also appreciate an itemization of some other monopolies and "near-monopolies."
We'd also be curious to know whether your views on this subject have changed in the past year in light of what happened with AIG, our investment banks, and other financial institutions.
Opportunity to Serve as "Guest Author"
This forum was designed to be YOUR forum for the civil exchange of ideas by people with all points of views. We welcome the submission of articles by all of our readers, as long as they are in compliance with our Guidelines contained in Post No. 34. We look forward to receiving your submissions.