Below, we have provided the full transcript of the interview with Joshua Wright, Professor of Law at George Mason University, recorded on September 24, 2021.
This interview was done as part of the Antitrust Brainstorming Board created by CPI with the support of the CCIA.
Thank you, Prof. Wright, for sharing your time for this interview with CPI.
A video of the complete interview is available HERE.
Do you think the current antitrust framework works for consumers?
I think the current antitrust framework largely does work for competition and consumers. The historical arc of antitrust is such that the current framework, usually we think about that as being encompassed by the consumer welfare standard. We took 70, 80 years of trial and error and getting a lot of things wrong to get here. While there are some tweaks in the system, no system is perfect. I think the U.S. system that we’ve adopted over that 70 or 80 years, until we adopted the Consumer Welfare Standard in the late seventies to current, largely works well by deterring anti-competitive behavior while still allowing consumers to benefit from competition that improves their lives.
Do you believe the vertical merger guidelines need to be changed?
Well, they’re largely gone now, right? Recently, with the vertical mergers being withdrawn at least by one agency, no doubt some changes are coming. But I’m happy to talk about what I think both about the guidelines that the FTC rescinded, and also w…