Over the last century, the government has used antitrust law to prosecute and punish some of the most productive and innovative companies in history. It has subjected companies like Standard Oil, General Electric and Microsoft to endless trials, massive fines and destructive breakups—on charges that they harmed worthy competitors and helpless customers by engaging in so-called anticompetitive behavior.
In this provocative lecture, Dr. Gary Hull argues that the targets of antitrust are not criminals but victims. Their much-reviled monopoly power is not coercive or destructive; it is the life-giving power to produce products that are incredibly appealing to customers and far superior to those of laggard competitors. Antitrust law, argues Dr. Hull, is fundamentally unjust: it throttles, punishes and sacrifices America’s best producers for the sake of their inferiors. This evil is not merely in any specific case or application of antitrust, but inherent in the law, as such. Antitrust cannot be “fixed” or redeemed. It must be abolished.