Analysts say Elizabeth Warren could break up big tech if she became president… so why isn’t Trump doing it?

Saturday, November 16, 2019
By Paul Martin

by: Lance D Johnson
Saturday, November 16, 2019

Does President Donald Trump have the executive power to break up Facebook, Amazon, Apple and Google? A Barclay’s analyst warns that democratic nominee Elizabeth Warren could break up Big Tech through executive order, if she is elected President. If the President has this power, why hasn’t Trump used anti-competition laws to break up these monopolies now?

President Trump has publicly called out Amazon as a “no-tax monopoly,” and he has directed the Federal Trade Commission to come up with a tech task force “to ensure consumers benefit from free and fair competition.” What is Trump’s long term strategy on this issue?

Candidate Warren is using the issue as a rallying cry for her campaign, but the solutions to the problem are more complex than a political sound bite. Simply breaking up big tech through executive order would not put an end to Big Tech’s unfair, discriminatory, and anti-competitive practices. Furthermore, how would breaking up these monopolies impact the market, investments, and harm 401ks? As Trump finds a way to protect Americans from Big Tech’s discriminatory practices, he must also ensure that the markets are kept stable, growing.

More importantly, there are ways to combat Big Tech’s discriminatory practices at the source. These solutions require Congressional approval. In order to hold Big Tech accountable, Congress could designate these companies as “platform utilities.” In this way, the tech companies would not own the platform or its participants and would not be able to share people’s data with third party companies. This would stop Big Tech from exploiting people’s data for their own gain.

“When you’re dealing with natural monopolies, you have to take away their ability to exploit their control over a marketplace,” says Barry Lynn of the Open Markets Institute.

Restore rule of law and hold Big Tech accountable

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