The House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust Subcommittee this week released the 400-page findings of its 16-month investigation into the “state of competition in the digital economy.”
The predetermined results cited a “clear and compelling need” to “strengthen antitrust enforcement and consider a range of forceful options, including structural separations and prohibitions on anticompetitive conduct” against the likes of Facebook, Amazon, Apple and Google.
The use of the word “force” is telling, given the voluntary nature of markets and consumer choice.
Antitrust regulation is a prominent illustration of how unhinged and concentrated hyper-regulatory power, not just spending authority, enables and encourages massive compulsory transfers of wealth by government. Every generation or so we go through the motions of “modernizing” antitrust only to invent complex new rationales reviving it for every major new frontier sector because, this time, we really mean it, it’s really different and government needs to step in.
Market actors today find themselves accused by so-called trustbusters of being too big, reducing consumer welfare, raising rivals’ costs, and—in the latest iteration—of doing other bad things like interfering with free speech.
In a release accompanying the new report, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nader (D-New York) proclaimed, “As they exist today, Apple