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U.S. 'Injustice' Sold to Olin/Schaife

          A couple of members have posted reminders of the objective here,
  namely, to SOLVE the problem of the Microsoft monopoly.  Find a solution,
  then find a way to implement it.  Exactly.  And my reports on the
  pro-monopoly stance of the U.S. judges--including 8 of the 9 members of the
  Supreme Court--have been offered as a part of precisely that inquiry.  If we
  Americans find something to be demonstrably *unfair,* we confidently expect
  our judges to fix it.  'Justice' is guaranteed to us, is it not, by our
  founding documents--our luminous Declaration of Independence, our
  magisterial Constitution--and our glorious national tradition of 'equal
  justice to all'? My message here has been:  Won't work this time.  Our
  country's judiciary has, since roughly 1975, been firmly on the side of
  monopoly.  The side of injustice.  
          To walk into a U.S. court in 1997 with the idea of challenging a
  monopoly is to invite ridicule--not to mention bankruptcy.  'Fairness' is no
  longer an element in the antitrust calculus.  A 'level playing field' is
  considered a joke.  Battle to the death.  The last firm 'left standing' is
  the Darwinian 'fittest'--and he's entitled to the *spoils* of his victory,
  the right to loot the consuming PUBLIC (via monopoly prices) until he's been
  replaced in some distant future by an even more 'efficient' corporate
  predator.  Monopoly is 'efficent.'  Monopoly is 'innovative.'  Monopoly is
  'pro-consumer.'  Monopoly is GOOD.
          Now, back to the problem of 'fixing' the Microsoft monopoly.  The
  U.S. judges aren't going to do it.  They don't believe in competitive
  economic markets.  They consider them inefficient, wasteful, technologically
  backward, and a threat to America's future in the global economy.  Bill's
  legal team thus knows that it has virtually all of the country's 1,000
  judges in its back-pocket.  It also knows that  Justice's antitrust division
  (a) depends on a staff that basically agrees with the judges and (b) has,
  for some 20 years, been out of the business of trying cases and is therefore
  legally incompetent--even if it had the will and the political backing--to
  mount a serious anti-monopoly campaign against a corporate adversary with
  Bill Gates' $40 billion plus war-chest.
          If America's judges, as I maintain, are overwhelmingly on Bill's
  side, then what are the OPTIONS for those who don't like his monopoly?  Here
  are the ones that occur to me:
          (1)  Persuade the U.S. JUDGES that they're wrong.
          (2)  Persuade the U.S. CONGRESS that it should rewrite our antitrust
  laws-- taking them out of the hands of our federal judges or otherwise
  making them 'judge-proof.'
          (3)  Persuade the U.S. MEDIA that, notwithstanding their OWN
  monopolies,   Adam Smith was right in his conclusion that monopoly is
  generally a very bad idea, one that grievously impairs the 'wealth of
  nations' everywhere.
          (4)  Persuade the U.S. PUBLIC that its media, its national
  legislature, and its federal judges are all wrong in their 1997 embrace of
  economic monopoly--that, again as Adam Smith emphasized, it is simply a
  private 'tax' on the rest of society, an 'absurd' one that inevitably leads
  to corporate bloat, inefficiency, stagnation, and finally relative poverty
  for the citizens of the country that tolerates it.
          Monopoly versus competition.  A policy choice to be made by a nation
  but first by the many constituent groups that, together, create a country.
  An economy made up of 1-firm industries--or one composed on, say, Adam
  Smith's 20-firm model?  Which is BETTER for the world's 200 countries?
  Enter me in the Smith column.  But how to get there?  In a democracy, one
  needs 51% of the vote.
          Note that 'persuasion' is accordingly the task in all 4 of my cases,
  above.  To bring the Microsoft monopoly to heel, one would have to persuade
  either (1) the judges, (2) the legislature, (3) the media, or (4) the public
  at large.  It must, by definition, BE a 'persuasive' case--competition is
  better (for the citizenry) than monopoly.  There must be persuasive evidence
  behind it.  And, in the last analysis, one must line up persuasive ADVOCATES
  to present it.  
          The issue in every monopoly case is an 'economic' one.  Supply and
  demand.  Get control of the supply--a chokehold somewhere along the way--and
  (if the consumer demand is there) you can inflate the price, causing your
  profits to soar--a la Bill Gates and his $40 billion plus private fortune.
  Since the issue is one that turns on the hydraulics of economic forces--and
  because the task at hand is to create a CHANGE in one of these group's
  economic opinions--which discipline would you especially like to have on
  your side?  Sociology?  Physics?  Political science?   Lowly economics?
          Of course.  To persuade our 1,000 federal judges, our 535 members of
  Congress, our several thousand media executives, and our 270 million
  citizens--on any economic question--one's first necessity would seemingly be
  to win the support of the professional ECONOMIC community, particularly (in
  this instance) the part of it that specializes in antimonopoly policy.  A
  yea vote from a majority of the estimated 100,000 economists worldwide would
  be, it seems to me,  an unambiguous plus here.   Do America's (and the
  world's) economists come down on the healthy trustbusting side?  By a
  roughly 85% majority, according to the only polls I'm aware of.
          I've repeatedly urged Ralph to seek the aid of those of the
  country's antitrust (industrial-organization) economists, if any,  who
  haven't sold out yet to the long roster of our corporate monopolists--who,
  if asked by him, might be willing to speak up on behalf of Adam Smith's
  competitive economic markets.  
          I've also urged the members of this list--particularly those with
  expertise in either antitrust law/economics or computer technology--to
  exercise their democratic right (and duty) to share their evidence and
  opinions on the Microsoft monopoly with the attorney general (Janet Reno),
  with the members of Congress, and with the media.  It's called democracy.
  The response to my suggestion there?  Zilch.  Nada.  Let George do it.
  Monopoly trumps democracy, presumalby because all believe, at bottom, that
  the monopolist is going to win--and that opposing him will be personally
  costly in the end.
          Again, put your money on Bill's legal team.
          If you're curious as to how America's power structure--its 1,000
  judges, 535 members of Congress, and its media sages--was seduced by the
  peculiar notion that monopoly is 'pro-consumer,' the following is one of my
  earlier posts on how the right-wing foundations (Olin, Schaife, et al) used
  their virtually unlimited millions of dollars to kill U.S. antimonopoly
  policy in the late '70s and early '80s, how they managed to be so
  'persuasive.'  They bought the national forum--and closed it to all
  competing voices.  D. McCullaugh tells us that 'only leftists' are 'allowed
  to hold seminars for judges.'  In my 39 years in the antimonopoly field,
  I've never heard of any such 'leftist' judicial training program for federal
  judges.  He has in mind the Olin and Schaife programs?  Besides, he says,
  'if Charles had half a clue, he'd know George Mason's law and economic
  schools are not particularly conservative, but are instead free-market and
  libertarian.'  The latter, he assures us, 'are not pro-big business.'  
          'Free-market and libertarian' isn't 'conservative'?  Not 'pro-big
  business?'  Libertarians--e.g., Ayn Rand's disciples--are trust-busters?
  GMU's law/economics 'seminars' for the U.S. judges are an ongoing scandal.
  They're operating full-tilt at this very moment.  Bill Clinton's nominees to
  the federal bench, like their Reagan/Bush predecessors, are promptly invited
  to attend--to spend 2 weeks at a luxurious Key Biscayne or other warm
  tropical resort in mid-winter listening to a $500 per hour Chicago theorist
  explaining why Monopoly Is Good.  
          After their 2 weeks of indoctrination in the sun, an endless stream
  of Chicago literature follows them back to their chambers in the north.  The
  result?  All antitrust cases are summarily killed.  Complaints dismissed out
  of hand.  Summary judgments granted before trial.  Directed verdicts for the
  monopoist during and after trial.  Pro-monopoly jury instructions that leave
  juries no choice but to find for the monopolist.  Overturned jury verdicts.
  Bottom line:  Repudiation of the ancient right to jury trial under the 7th
  amendment to the U.S. Constitution. 
          America's judiciary has disgraced itself it the antitrust area.  And
  having sold its honor there for 2 weeks in the sun--justice denied to 1500
  antitrust plaintiffs each year--the country now knows the petty price of
  judicial 'approval' in general.  The millions of Olin/Schaife dollars--and
  those of their fellow right-wing loonies-- have, sadly, made a mockery of
  our proudest national heritage, 'equal justice under law.' Antimonopoly law
  in the U.S. has been bought and sold--and gone to the highest bidders. The
  mechanics are elaborated below in one of my earlier posts on George Mason
  University's carrying on of a systematic 20-year indoctrination of the
  country's federal judges at its sunny Florida 'retreats.'  
          This scandal is a continuing one.  Has Joel Klein, Justice's
  antitrust chief, spoken up against it?  Did his predecessor, Anne Bingaman,
  make even one speech denouncing this ongoing miseducation of America's
  judges?  Has Robert Pitofsky, the FTC's chairman, uttered a public word on
  the subject?  Has Ralph Nader made a speech, or written a newspaper column,
  on the issue?  Why should he push Justice to bring a case against the
  Microsoft monopoly if he has no objection to the crippling operation of an
  ongoing right-wing propaganda mill dedicated to teaching the nation's judges
  that Monopoly Is Good?  
          I was interviewed a couple of days ago by a journalist representing
  a magazine in the computer industry with a reported circulation of some 1.5
  million.  Would 1.5 million letters complaining of Bill's
  monopoly--addressed to our judges, members of Congress, and newspaper/TV
  editors--solve that problem?  As I've inquired before, does water run
          Charles Mueller, Editor
          George Mason University (Fairfax, Virginia) hosts a high-price
  propaganda mill for the Fortune 500 and the corporate foundations they've
  spawned, via Henry Manne's 'Law & Economics Center' there, an operation that
  has been 'educating' U.S. judges in Olin/Schaife 'economic' notions for over
  20 years.   The central problem is that non-Chicago 'teachers' have always
  been excluded (Paul Samuelson was the 'token liberal' used--for a very high
  price--to give a phony color of diversity to a loaded agenda and then sent
          If this "Center" was offering a balanced presentation, with equal
  time to distinguished non-Chicago economists, I would of course have no
  criticism of its program for the judges, nor would anyone else.  It is
  precisely the ONE-SIDEDNESS that is the curse here, the evil that assures
  victory for the paymasters behind it, the rich corporations and their
  foundations.  If the opposing side was allowed to be heard in these
  "seminars," the latter would be worthless to their corporate sponsors and
  would be abandoned immediately:  
          The judges, being economically innocent but not stupid, would be
  quite unpersuaded by Manne's agenda for laissez-faire monopoly IF they were
  allowed to hear the other side at the same time, in the same forum.  The day
  he announces that distinguished non-Chicago economists will be allowed to
  share the podium on equal terms is the day his FUNDING will suddenly
  evaporate. Manne knows this only too well, which is of course why he won't
  allow non-Chicagoans to participate--or even allow me to attend with the
  judges as an observer. 
           EXCLUSION of opponents is thus the key ingredient in the "success"
  of this program that has so smoothly suckered its judicial and academic
  attendees.  This is of course the hallmark--as I pointed out earlier--of
  propaganda, not of a search for truth. We've seen its fruits over the
  centuries in countries where the prosecutor puts in his case and that's
  it--no rebuttal by the defendant is allowed.  The incumbent politician puts
  in his case via TV and that's it--his opponents aren't allowed into the
  studio.  The newspaper carries the party line and that's it--opposing
  parties are banned from its pages.
          The 'economic seminars' for U.S. judges sponsored by the
  libertarian/right- wing/conservatives at George Mason University are a fraud
  on the nation's citizens, a pro-monopoly scam bought and paid for by
  Olin/Schaife and other loonies of the far right.  Open these fraudulent
  judicial 'seminars' to leading economists of all persuasions and they'll
  fold within the week. 
          Charles Mueller, Editor