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Government's Role in Regulating Monopolies like Microsoft

Government's Role in Regulating Monopolies like Microsoft

The economic system of the United States is modeled after the theory of capitalism. "Capitalism supports free enterprise - private business operating without government regulation (Janda 22)." The United States does regulate private businesses. Sometimes special circumstances arise which threaten to weaken the overall economic stability of the country. In order to sufficiently deal with these situations, the United States government has passed many laws granting certain groups the authority to bring attention to and to stop the threat. This is extremely important in terms of its effects on individuals. It protects the freedoms of individuals, maintains order and stability, and attempts to promote equality. One example of the ability of the United States government to interfere with the natural progression of the American capitalist society, is the existence of antitrust laws. These laws regulate certain actions of individuals, trusts, corps, and combinations of corps in an attempt to prevent or forcibly end a monopoly (Gilbert 21). Since 1989, Microsoft has been repeatedly accused of violating antitrust laws. Many times these accusations have led to an antitrust case being filed against Microsoft. These antitrust laws and law suits are extremely important. Despite the verdicts of the cases, antitrust laws served their purpose - to maintain the balance of the concepts of freedom, order, and equality. Freedom is one of the three main concepts that government must pursue for its people. Freedom has two main contexts in which it is used which are freedom of and freedom from. "Freedom of is the absence of constraints on behavior; it means freedom to do something (Janda 10)." These types of freedoms guarantee individuals certain liberties such as freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of the press, and all other civil liberties. These individual liberties are extremely important in a democracy. "Freedom from . . . suggests immunity from fear and want." Freedom from is also important in a democracy. It guarantees that certain things cannot be done to anyone (Janda 10). This is important because it places limits on the powers of the government. Another duty that government must pursue is maintaining order. Order is "the rule of law to preserve life and protect property. Maintaining order is the oldest purpose of government (Janda A31)." There is also a third aspect associated with the idea of order. This is a belief in maintaining traditional patterns of...

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