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Blog o’ Blogs February 2014

 |  February 18, 2014

With the polar vortex assaulting the U.S. and rain drowning England, it seems only appropriate to highlight blogs about antitrust also being under attack. And, indeed, these articles not only question some standard answers to competition queries, but even ask what are the right questions to pose.

Asking the right questions

Too often we tend to assume that if we can write down a question-in a request for information-then business can write down the answer just as simply.

Kevin Coates (21st Century Competition)

End of the Reign of Europe’s Competition Enforcer

Many in Brussels are nostalgic for what they call the golden era of European competition policy under Mario Monti.

Paul Taylor (NY Times)

Bork and Microsoft: Why Bork Was Right and What We Learn About Judging Exclusionary Behavior

Had Bork undergone some sort of conversion that led him to see the need to protect small competitors from the depredations of dominant firms?

Harry First (Antitrust and Competition Policy Blog)

Apple Gets Half A Loaf Of Bread in “Losing” Appellate Challenge Of Antitrust Monitor

To the extent that Apple is seeking to convey to the Second Circuit an impression of overreaching by the district court and its monitor, Apple may well have furthered its ultimate objective with its “loss” here.

Allison Sheedy (Antitrust Today)

Barons of Broadband

When and why did we stop worrying about monopoly power?

Paul Krugman (NY Times)

Antitrust Rules Driving Board Changes

Governments are increasingly using antitrust and other regulatory powers for broader political and economic purposes.

Ben DiPietro (Wall Street Journal)

Abuse of dominance: no commercial gain, no abuse?

Is it necessary for there to be some commercial benefit to be gained by a dominant undertaking from its conduct before that conduct can be condemned as abusive?

Emily Neill (Competition Bulletin)

Health Law Goals Face Antitrust Hurdles

The decision in Idaho was significant for being the first about the acquisition of a doctor group.

Eduardo Porter (NY Times)

And the FTC replies:

Health Law and Antitrust

Enforcing the United States antitrust laws will not conflict with the goals of the Affordable Care Act. 

Martin Gaynor (FTC via the NY Times)

FTC Performs Balancing Act in Evaluating Health Care Provider Combinations

It appears that a small-and arguably semantic-difference will go a long way in getting combining parties out of the cross-hairs of the FTC.

Axel Bernabe (Antitrust Today)

FTC’s Antitrust Decision Hands Partial Defeat to …the FTC

For antitrust lawyers, the larger question is whether Thursday’s ruling reflects any sort of shift in the FTC adjudication of its own cases.

Brent Kendall (WSJ Law Blog)

Why the FTC’s McWane Opinions Raise More Questions Than They Answer

While the exclusion issue is more interesting to the antitrust thinkers, it is the missed opportunity to provide guidance on the collusion issue, faced by counselors every day,

Steven Cernak (Antitrust Connect)

State aid: you don’t know what you’re missing (+ thicko of the day award)

Despite all the fun, the legal complexity and the political and economic importance, State aid is not paid the attention it deserves by practicing lawyers.

Alfonso Lamadrid (Chillin’ Competition)

How a Brics Country Defeats EU Commission and the Rule of Law

Yet, after some diplomatic prodding and economic threats, the Commission now has changed its tune and is literally giving GAZPROM a “get-out-of-jail-free card.”

Andreas Stargard (African Antitrust & Competition Law News & Analysis)