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.
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.”
Open Markets Legal Director Sandeep Vaheesan published an article in the Maryland Law Review on how antitrust law protected capital and punished labor in the original Gilded Age and in the second Gilded Age in which we live. Although the specific doctrines and rules today are different than they were a century ago, antitrust is once again doing little to check corporate domination of markets and also preventing a significant fraction of the labor force from organizing.
Public Justice, the American Association for Justice, and Open Markets Institute filed an amicus brief on August 9 to the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in support of a consumer antitrust class action lawsuit against Qualcomm.
Welcome to The Corner. In this issue, we highlight a powerful dissent in the Federal Trade Commission’s settlement with Facebook, discuss why the Trump Administration’s new hospital pricing rule won’t fix American healthcare, and identify three key takeaways from last week’s House subcommittee hearing on Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google.
In the first part of a three-part series for Pro-Market, Open Markets Senior Fellow Matt Stoller explains why antimonopoly politics is experiencing a resurgence. “To understand how far we’ve come, we must understand what was,” writes Stoller. “I am going to try and help us reach back to the 1990s, before the financial crisis, Iraq War, Big Tech’s monopolization, before Nickelback jokes, and so forth.”