This is the edited transcript of the Competition Lore podcast episode 17, "The Myth of Capitalism"?, with Jonathan Tepper.
You can purchase a PDF download of the complete transcript of this podcast for US$10.
“Capitalism without competition is not capitalism”. That is the fundamental and irrefutable premise of a new book by Jonathan Tepper and Denise Hearn, The Myth of Capitalism: Monopolies and the Death of Competition, named one of the best economics books of 2018 by The Financial Times.
Tepper and Hearn launch a stinging attack on high concentration and insipid competition in the US economy today, documenting and explaining its symptoms and side effects at length. This is a polemic that takes no prisoners. Dysfunctionality and capture of the political, regulatory and academic establishments are recurring themes and, not surprisingly, Big Tech is singled out for special treatment.
The book mounts an extensively researched and engagingly written case for an overhaul of antitrust enforcement to fix the problem. It's a call to arms, exhorting legislators and courts to ensure that antitrust laws play their part in administering the dose of reinvigorated competition that Tepper and Hearn argue is sorely needed.
Faltering productivity, stymied innovation, stagnant wages growth and rising inequality are not just concerns for the US, however. They are the preoccupations of economic policymakers and enforcement agencies in many countries around the world, making the book a valuable resource with international relevance.
In this episode, Jonathan shares the key insights from the book and defends its thesis against the arguments that most commonly feature on the opposing side of the debate.
While great care has been taken in the preparation of the transcript, there may be some minor errors.