An urgent and witty manifesto, Monopolies Suck “lucidly explains how monopolies threaten democracy, worsen inequality, and imperil the American Dream—and why it’s more important than ever to take action” (David Cicilline).
Something’s not right. No matter how hard you work, life seems to only get harder. When your expenses keep going up but your income stays flat, when you’re price-gouged buying medicine for your child’s life-threatening allergy, when you live in a hyped-up state of fear and anxiety, monopoly power is playing a key role. In Monopolies Suck, antitrust expert and director at the Open Markets Institute, Sally Hubbard, shows us the seven ways big corporations rule our lives—and what must be done to stop them.
Throughout history, monopolists who controlled entire industries like railroads and oil were aptly called “robber barons” because they extracted wealth from everyone else—and today’s monopolies are no different. By charging high prices, skirting taxes, and reducing our pay and economic opportunities, they are not only stealing our money, but also robbing us of innovation and choice, as market dominance prevents new companies from challenging them. They’re robbing us of the ability to take care of our sick, a healthy food supply, and a habitable planet by using business practices that deplete rather than generate. They’re a threat to our private lives, fair elections, a robust press, and ultimately, the American Dream that so many of us are striving for.
In this “accessible guide” (Zephyr Teachout, author of Break ‘Em Up), Sally Hubbard gives us an easy-to-understand overview of the history of monopolies and antitrust law, and urges us to use our voices, votes, and wallets to protest monopoly power. Emboldened by the previous century when we successfully broke up monopoly power in the US, we have the tools to dismantle corporate power again today—before their lobbying threatens to undermine our economy and democracy for generations to come.