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A Great Antitrust Web Site

          John Bowen of Ripon College in Wisconsin has finally let us in on
  the secret (below) that he has an antitrust Web site, one covering no less
  than 72 antitrust decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court over roughly 100
  years.  And that he has had this site for about a decade!
          If I understand his format correctly (after a preliminary visit), he
  picked these 72 cases--which you'll notice average just under 1 per
  year--via a single criterion, namely, that one or more of the 9 justices
  DISSENTED from the Court's (majority) decision, thus creating a "debate"
  situation.  The opposing sides are presented via excerpts from the
  conflicting opinions, majority-versus-dissent.  It's obviously a marvelous
  pedagogical device:  John's economics students (and those of other
  academics) can choose sides and bring the argument into his classroom.
          Not being a lawyer (as I understand it), John has presented his site
  without a line of commentary--not a clue as to what he thinks of the
  "economics" in these 72 cases.  
          For those interested in the history of U.S. antitrust law--in the
  year-by-year shaping of the country's "industrial policy" by our Supreme
  Court--this is a splendid resource.
          For those of us who are focused on the future--on antimonopoly
  policy for the world's 200 countries in the years and decades ahead--he
  needs to make a small addition:  He should share with the rest of us the no
  doubt rich policy debate that goes on in his classroom--and in those of all
  the other economics professors who use his 72 cases.  In other words, he
  needs to set up an online discussion group, one devoted to the pros and cons
  of the "economics" the Supreme Court has favored the country with (or
  inflicted on it) in its antitrust decisions of the past century.  His
  student "debates" here should be presented online--and thus shared with the
  rest of the world.  
          The U.S. has roughly 1,000 federal judges.  9 on the Supreme Court,
  150 or so on the 13 appellate courts, and some 800 at the trial (district)
  level.  Each of them has 3 to 5 "law clerks," recent graduates of the
  country's most strenuous law schools who do the actual writing of our
  nation's antitrust opinions.  Those 1,000 judges-- and their 4,000 or so
  youthful ghost writers--all have computers on their desks and doubtless also
  have Internet connections.  Would they "listen in" as John's students --and
  others--debated the "economics" of the 72 precedents they're relying on in
  their day-to-day work of raping sound antimonopoly policy?  Does water run
          There can be no serious antitrust reform--in any country--until the
  judges have been persuaded to embrace it.  Or have been stripped of their
  crippling role here.  Until then, Ralph is, I fear, whistlin' Dixie.
          Charles Mueller, Editor
  At 10:59 PM 12/3/97 -0500, you wrote:
  >I've put my collection of excerpts from Supreme Court antitrust opinions,
  >covering 72 cases from 1895 through 1993 in which the Court "debates"
  >antitrust economics issues, on my Web page:
  >	http://www.ripon.edu/faculty/bowenj/antitrust/INTRO.htm
  >Comments, questions and suggestions from members of this list are welcome.
  >John Bowen
  >Ripon College