Pluralistic: Is antitrust anti-labor? (14 Apr 2023)

Today’s links Is antitrust anti-labor?: tl;dr: no. Hey look at this: Delights to delectate. This day in history: 2003, 2008, 2013, 2018, 2022 Colophon: Recent publications, upcoming/recent appearances, current writing projects, current reading Is antitrust anti-labor? (permalink) If you find the word “antitrust” has a dusty, old-fashioned feel, that’s only to be expected – after all, the word has its origins in the late 19th century, when the first billionaire was created: John D Rockefeller, who formed a “trust” with his oil industry competitors, through which they all agreed to stop competing with one another so they could concentrate on extracting more from their workers and their customers. Trusts were an incredibly successful business structure. A bunch of competing companies would be sold to a new holding company (“the trust”), and the owners of those old standalone companies would get stock in this new trust. The trust would operate as a single entity, hiking prices and suppressing wages. If anyone tried fight the trust with a new, independent company, the trust could freeze them out, by selling goods below cost, or by doing exclusive deals with key suppliers and customers, or both. Once a trust sewed up an industry, no one could compete. The trust barons were rulers for life. The first successful trust was Rockefeller’s Standard Oil, which amassed a 90% share of all US oil. Other “capitalists” got in on the game, forming the Cotton Seed Oil Trust (75% market share), the Sugar Trust (85%). Then came the…Pluralistic: Is antitrust anti-labor? (14 Apr 2023)

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