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Nation of Monopolies

The U.S.A. has become a nation of monopolies. Want to buy a ticket to an upcoming event? Ticketmaster. Put that $20 ticket in your shopping cart. And then, ‘Voila!,’ $13.50 worth of additional fees. The price nearly doubled by Ticketmaster! More on outrageous ticket fees here. Need to search something on the internet? That would be Google. Operating system for your computer? That’s Microsoft. And they have Excel and Word for you. Microsoft tried venturing into search as Google tried going into word processing. Then, did the 2 tech titans strike a ‘gentleman’s agreement’? Because now Google was left alone by Microsoft to own search… and browsers. Microsoft just abruptly destroyed its own browser, and recently sealed the news, story, by literally embracing Google’s browser technology). Meanwhile, Google has kind of gone.. soft.. on its ventures into software and operating systems.

Want to get on an airplane? Well, on the overall market share of the country we have, say, 4 or so major airlines (American, Delta, United, Southwest). But they each kind of own their own hub airports. So if you are in Atlanta, your monopoly provider is Delta, American has about 90%, ninety percent! of the traffic in Charlotte (which of course the WSJ here finds to be a good thing), etc. And so airline ticket prices are skyrocketing. Not to mention the “passenger bill of rights” legislation that (as with pretty much most major legislation these days) actually does pretty much the opposite of what it says. Basically ensures that the airlines can do whatever they want as respects cancelling flights, etc. When it comes to the technology titans, they too write up the legislation. Much of this comes after a manufactured crisis. Mark Zuckerberg famously went in front of Congress and then within a month every internet company was emailing us about their updated privacy terms. Do you think those updates were to help protect citizens and consumers? That’s the impression they give. No. They were to actually give the technology companies the permission to do even more than they were doing before.

Like the financial crisis. What do you do to solve a financial crisis? Congress gave the biggest banks that caused the crisis more power. And the government (ie. former bankers) got more power to regulate any banks trying to compete against those big banks. Read more about this topic in this book about vastly improving our economy, Financial Fair Hope.

A lot of what is happening in the United States of America today you couldn’t make it into a believable movie. Have we given up on competition? Read thoughts on that here. Drip by drip, like frogs in a boiling pot… 2019 here we are: in a… Nation of Monopolies.

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