The New Politics of Antitrust
This thesis argues that fundamental changes in the technological and geopolitical landscape will lead to the new politics of antitrust. This is a novel argument for several reasons. First, for many decades antitrust has denied its political nature; it was taboo in the antitrust community to speak of the “politics of antitrust.” Antitrust has been long considered a largely apolitical exercise of settled legal and economic precepts. Contrary to this view, the thesis argues that the political nature of antitrust is returning to the surface after being denied for decades. Second, it is only by accepting that antitrust enforcement was never a value-neutral exercise that we can begin to tackle the normative challenges that antitrust must now address. Thanks to a changing technological and geopolitical landscape, the field is livelier today than it has been in decades. The future of antitrust will be shaped by how policymakers respond to the new normative challenges they face. Naming and situating these challenges is a much needed step for the antitrust community. This thesis offers a new understanding of the politics of antitrust.