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Fair Trade and Anti-Monopoly

  	Were it not for antitrust actions that compelled IBM
  	to respect our competitive markets, MS would be a
  	zero today.
  	Now, based on some merit and much aggressive
  	questionable practice, MS is a near monopoly in
  	significant markets.  It will get its day in court as all
  	of  us should.  
  	The story of the success of a small company reported
  	today that may be indebted to the standards the
  	market has seemingly adopted, is a fair one.  This 
  	appraisal of MS must take into account the need for
  	such standards to allow both consumers and small
  	producers to succeed.  
  	The current method of fighting it out in marketing to 
  	get standards out there, and then curbing abuse via 
  	fair trade and anti-trust, has its faults.  The best 
  	technology is not always the standard the market 
  	Some new systems may be in order that would balance
  	marketing by jury competitions, as in architecture.
  	Winners of jury awards might get large subsidies to 
  	allow them to catch up to inferior products that have
  	"caught on" -- especially when "catching on" is often
  	the result of marketing practices that only barely escape 
  	In all events, the Nader Appraisal has its work cut out
  	for it.  If it does not come up with solutions it can
  	sell to voters -- such as juries and large subsidy awards
  	-- we will make only marginal progress.  (Of course, 
  	MS will, I hope, be made to back down in the browser
  	tie-in to Windows.) 
  	Meanwhile, there is a good chance that in ten years a 
  	user friendly open system, with virtually no user futzing
  	required (VNUFR), served by 	many producers, none 
  	with dominance over all others, 	will emerge.  MS may 
  	even be the largest software writer for such open 
  	system. Or it may be only a lesser player.  
  	Our real need is for digital money to support 
  	democratic free enterprise, digital education on 
  	demand, and digitally enhanced law and politics to 
  	inform the public and serve its interest.  	If  MS 
  	doesn't supply these needs, and PBS does not,
  	and Disney, Sony, Turner, Murdoch, etc., do not, 
  	maybe NS (Nader Systems) will.
          John Gelles                   email  address: myturn@vcol.net
          http://www.myturn.org   ;    http://www.rain.org/~jjgelles/
          The Web addresses above argue for economic rights and
          wealth  creation,  and for individual and national  security,  
          to be financed by credit and protected against inflation by 
          full automation and  saving --  not  by  high  interest,  high 
          unemployment and high taxes.