Public policies structure markets in ways that can make them open and competitive at one extreme or closed and cornered at the other. The most familiar example are anti-trust laws. But competition policy also includes patent laws, occupational licensing requirements, prohibitions on price discrimination, “net neutrality” regulations, and other policies that set the terms of competition within any market.
Prof. Sanjukta Paul and Sandeep Vaheesan published a piece on The Nation asserting that the response to the next recession should put economic power back in the hands of the people. “Rebuilding antitrust law is an essential element of the progressive economic policy agenda,” they write. “Antitrust should be part of a suite of reforms in the Green New Deal—something that we sorely need, no matter when or how hard the next recession hits.”
The Open Markets Institute filed an amicus brief in support of PNE Energy Supply in its lawsuit against Eversource Energy and Avangrid, Inc. on October 25, 2019. The two energy corporations are accused of abusing their monopoly power to gouge prices for consumers in New England.
Simon & Schuster published Open Markets Fellow Matt Stoller’s new book, Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Populism on Tuesday. The book details how Americans once understood the connection between corporate monopolies and authoritarianism and successfully opposed both through antitrust and other competition policies.
Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller publishes an adapted excerpt of his book “Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy” on the Wall Street Journal. He asserts the loudest complaints against today’s monopolies come not from Occupy Wall Street types but from leaders of firms seeking freedom of commerce.
Gerald Berk reviews Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller’s new book Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy on The American Prospect. He writes that Matt Stoller’s ‘Goliath’ seeks to recover and explain the anti-monopoly tradition of the 20th century, at a time when it is urgently needed in the 21st. “Democrats who seek to revitalize their party would do well to study Matt Stoller’s Goliath and incorporate—in a complex and thoughtful manner—its central teachings,” Berk says.
On October 3, Open Markets Institute joined a group of public interest groups and one union to file a petition before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to put the T-Mobile/Sprint merger on hold. This petition was filed after the FCC said that Sprint had misled the FCC and claimed that 885,000 subscribers were low-income and thus Sprint needed money from the FCC to serve them.
Open Markets Legal Director Sandeep Vaheesan argues on The American Prospect that corporate power can be neutralized if federal agencies simply used the prodigious authority they’ve been granted. “The president already has extraordinary authority under decades-old statutes,” Vaheesan writes. “The question is will he or she appoint officials—to the Department of Justice (DOJ) Antitrust Division, Federal Trade Commission (FTC), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and other agencies—determined to tame corporate dominance of our economy and politics.”