Irish Liberty Forum

The [Myth of the] Standard Oil Monopoly

with one comment

In an excellent video, Lawrence Reed debunks the case of Standard Oil as monopoly.

The monopoly concept is seriously misunderstood. Rather than sticking to the classical definition; “an exclusive grant to sell given by government”, some believe that it’s something to do with market share.

In the video, Reed cites the recent example of the US FTC, which decided to take on five evil cereal manufacturers on charges of “shared monopoly”. What the hell is a “shared monopoly”? Who knows, but anyway, it’s apparently not cool if five competitors have 80% of the market share of ready-to-eat cereal. But isn’t cereal in competition with fruit, toast, pancakes and bacon?

Also, it was apparently not cool that Standard Oil once fleetingly held 90% of market share, despite having 66 other competitors ready to pounce when Standard slipped up.

The lesson: monopoly has nothing to do with market share as the definition of “market” can be whatever the hell you want it to be.

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to FurlAdd to Newsvine


Written by 20000miles

April 29, 2009 at 11:22 pm

Posted in economics

One Response

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. […] property ownership were historically regarded as the most altruistic and charitable. In addition to providing really cheap kerosene to Americans, John D. Rockefeller  was a prominant philanthropist. Socities where forced altruism […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: