Antitrust and the Supreme Court

By David Ramsey | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 4
Monopolistic Competition

“One of the central problems of twentieth century America has
revolved about the difficulty of reconciling a modern industrial order,
necessarily based upon a high degree of collective organization, with
democratic postulates, competitive ideals, and liberal individualistic
traditions inherited from the nineteenth century. This industrial order
has created in America a vision of material abundance, a dream of
abolishing poverty and achieving economic security for all; and the
great majority of Americans have not been willing to destroy it lest that
dream be lost. Yet at the same time it has involved, probably
necessarily, a concentration of economic power, a development of
monopolistic arrangements, and a loss of individual freedom and
initiative, all of which run counter to American ideals. Americans,
moreover, have never really decided what to do about this industrial
order…. And American economists as a whole have never reached any
real consensus in regard to the origins and nature of monopoly, its
effects, or the methods dealing with it.”

--Ellis W. Hawley,
The New Deal and the Problem of Monopoly

Following the Court’s dramatic decisions to break up the oil and tobacco trusts discussed in the previous chapter, one might expect that the Court then moved on to break up other notable concentrated industries. Indeed, soon after announcing its rulings in Standard Oil and American Tobacco, the Taft administration launched cases against J.P. Morgan’s United States Steel Corporation and the International Harvester Company. Though these cases would take years to reach the Supreme Court, it was immediately clear that the Taft administration was initiating a break with Roosevelt’s antitrust policies, which had

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Antitrust and the Supreme Court
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Table of Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Chapter 1 - The Business of the Roberts Court 1
  • Chapter 2 - The Common Law 13
  • Chapter 3 - The Rule of Reason 27
  • Chapter 4 - Monopolistic Competition 43
  • Chapter 5 - Workable Competition 59
  • Chapter 6 - The Harvard School 77
  • Chapter 7 - The Chicago School 93
  • Chapter 8 - Law and Economics at the University of Chicago 111
  • Chapter 9 - Law and Economics before the Supreme Court 141
  • Chapter 10 - Post-Chicago Antitrust 159
  • Chapter 11 - Antitrust Law and the Judicial Power 175
  • Notes 181
  • Table of Cases 238
  • Bibliography 243
  • Index 267
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