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Front Page » March 11, 2014 » Opinion » Monopoly money for all of us?
Published 137 days ago

Monopoly money for all of us?


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By RICHARD SHAW
Sun Advocate publisher

The world constantly changes, and sometimes you just have to say no.

That means us as individuals and the government too.

It is time we started looking at monopolise in business in a serious way.

The recent announcement that Time Warner and Comcast are going to merge will make it so a large portion of the cable television networks in the country are controlled by one company.

In the meat industry two or three corporations are dominating the market. One has such vertical integration within its operation with its chain of supply that they can put a farmer out of business in only a couple of months if they want to.

In the computer industry, Microsofts software is so dominant in the general market that it is almost impossible for a newcomer to get into the business. And in specialty software Adobe has dominated the market in the same way.

There are lots of places where companies control the market. But domination and complete control are very different things. General Motors was the largest maker of cars in the world for 70 years, but others (obviously) were able to get in and take some of that market.

In the cell phone industry Verizon and ATT have a huge percentage of the market and are slowly driving out the competition. Who knows one day? They might become ATT Verizon.

There have been many science fiction stories written about other planets where the "company" is the dominant law of the land and the peoples government is just a shadow. I believe we may be facing that now. I am no economist but I know that total domination of one industry nationally is a bad thing.

We faced this with the railroads and big oil in the late 1800s. The government stepped in and new laws were enacted to break them up.

Now those laws and the spirit of those laws are being ignored by regulatory agencies.

We can't stop this unless some things change. The money from lobbyists in Washington is too powerful, too alluring for representatives whose only goal it is to get elected again and again.

We need to get the money out of our political system. We need to overturn the Citizens United decision by working toward changing the constitution if need be.

Around here people often speak of the days when coal was produced by companies that owned everyone that worked for them lock, stock and barrel. It was a difficult time for people; company housing, company stores, company script.

If we aren't careful those days could return, and return on a national scale, taking away all the middle class has built.

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