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Antitrust and Monopoly

socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/27/2012 6:47:19 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Just jotting down a quick thought that I haven't seen brought up too much. Antitrust laws are forwarded by supporters as the solution to economic monopolies. They're supposed to make the market more open to competition and thus closer to the neoclassical conception of pure capitalism. Now putting aside all the public choice objections stemming from the fact that antitrust laws have been historically controlled by corporations themselves, there is the looming problem of monopoly.

In order to break up an economic monopoly, society (or rather the corporations writing the laws) resort to a power monopoly. In order to make sure that so and so companies don't get too much economic control over markets or what have you, it is thought that an institution which is given an incredible amount of social, economic, and aggressive power must be created. This idea seems rather contradictory obviously (as in, if power is the problem with this institution, why would creating an even more powerful institution do anything but perpetuation the original problem) but there's a supposed solution I sometimes here.

We control the State. It's argued that we control the State via voting or some other methods and so keep it's power in line. So it's not analogous to powerful corporations since they still need to have their power kept in check. But do we have control over the State really? Do corporate interests not dominate public policy? Look at Big Pharma or Big Oil who have millions to spend on lobbyists in order to finance public policy. To say that we (whoever that refers to is generally ambiguous) really control the State seems to me to be pure fiction.

Furthermore, if one can even conceive of being able to get past these barriers to control over the State through whatever means (social or educational I'm guessing), why can't these same means be equally applied to the corporations who were originally conceived as needing control over in the first place? I mean, if one accepts that we can control the State and successfully wrestle power away from lobbyists and corporate interests, then why is it somehow impossible to do the same to those institutions with economic power? Surely the State is a more powerful institution than any corporation right?
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
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: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
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: I disagree.
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/27/2012 7:58:33 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
I actually think this point is a good one to make in response to really any statist response to an unbalanced power structure ins society whereby the forwarded solution is an increase in State power. I mean the point remains that the State is by far the most powerful organization in any given society and surely people do not become saints automatically by virtue of taking a government job. So it seems weird to me that we see these corporations who abuse their power and thus conceive that they require higher-order regulation by an institution which is not only many times more powerful than them and run by people just as vulnerable to greed and exploitative practices as those heading corporations, but it is an institution which we have voluntarily created and one which we for some reason think will be easier to check then the corporations themselves. The disconnect in people's minds between the relatively similar incentive structures and the larger amount of power given to the government simply baffles me.

Note I'm not trying to appear condescending, I just legitimately don't understand the logic behind statist reasoning in this case.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.
Lordknukle
Posts: 12,788
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6/27/2012 8:21:43 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
The only three monopolies created directly by the free market were: Imperial Oil, Standard Oil, and DeBeers. Only one of them is still in operation today.

All the other monopolies were created thanks to regulations which "protect the consumer," but instead turn out to stagnate competition.
"Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
ConservativePolitico
Posts: 8,210
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6/27/2012 11:00:32 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
I think anti-trust and anti-monopoly laws are actually anti-classical in ideology because in breaking up these corporations you've tampered with the market in a way that is unnatural. Tampering with the market in any way is bad to a classicalist.

If the market wants to create a monopoly so be it.
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/27/2012 11:08:45 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Yeah I don't really care for the "conservative" view on anti-trust. I was more looking for a response from someone who actually supports anti-trust. Circle jerks get boring.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.
DanT
Posts: 5,693
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6/27/2012 11:22:23 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
There are 4 types of economic monopolies;

Natural Monopolies

Natural Monopolies arise when the consumer values their service so much, that they refuse to use their competitors. As a result of their products' high quality, and low prices, they gain a monopoly, because their competitors go out of business.
A Natural Monopoly can only survive so long as they continue to provide superior quality and prices. If they raise prices too high, or the quality of their product degrades, than a competitor can pop up to challenge them. Natural Monopolies are extremely rare.

Geographic Monopolies

Geographic Monopolies arise when the conditions in a geographical location is so unsuitable for business, than no one else chooses to compete. An example of this would be a general store.

Technological Monopolies

Technological Monopolies arise when a competitors are unable to compete due to a technological advantage. This could be a patent or copyright, or it could be something like a secret recipe, or even a secret computer code. An example of this would be Standard Oil, who had a long list of government patents; those patents prevented competition. One such patent was the sole rights to mechanical fabrication of cans; this patent alone gave them a huge edge over their competition.

Government Monopolies

Government Monopolies are monopolies created through government charters. One example would be the British East India Company; another example would be the Bank of the United States, which was a private bank granted a 20 year monopoly in order to create a centralized banking system.

Monopolies only become destructive when the government intervenes. If government caused the problem, government is not the solution to the problem. If you look at anti-trust laws, they target and demonize the private companies, while the government who created the mess gets off scotch free. A better solution would be for the government t not grant monopolies; furthermore patents constitutionally should only be granted for a limited period of time, and congress should determine how limited that time should be in order to prevent monopolies.
"Chemical weapons are no different than any other types of weapons."~Lordknukle
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/27/2012 11:24:00 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Thank you for that oddly useless point of information DANT but how is it relevant to what I posted?
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.
DanT
Posts: 5,693
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6/27/2012 11:34:02 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/27/2012 11:24:00 AM, socialpinko wrote:
Thank you for that oddly useless point of information DANT but how is it relevant to what I posted?

I was pointing out the hypocrisy and idiocy of anti-trust laws.
"Chemical weapons are no different than any other types of weapons."~Lordknukle
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/27/2012 11:35:47 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 6/27/2012 11:34:02 AM, DanT wrote:
At 6/27/2012 11:24:00 AM, socialpinko wrote:
Thank you for that oddly useless point of information DANT but how is it relevant to what I posted?

I was pointing out the hypocrisy and idiocy of anti-trust laws.

Interestingly enough, two of those probably wouldn't exist without a government, including patent laws for the lulz since anarchists are generally no friend to them.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.
socialpinko
Posts: 10,458
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6/28/2012 3:02:53 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Bump.
: At 9/29/2014 10:55:59 AM, imabench wrote:
: : At 9/29/2014 9:43:46 AM, kbub wrote:
: :
: : DDO should discredit support of sexual violence at any time and in every way.
:
: I disagree.