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RE: GPL & commercial software, the critical distinction (fwd)

> James A. Donald wrote
> [oddly irrelevant stuff about Satan skipped]
> > A big company has no monetary advantage over a small company.
> > Suppose Firm A controls 90% of the market and firm B 
> > controls 10% of the market.  Artificially low prices cost the 
> > big firm nine times as much as the small firm.  Under 
> > capitalism, the small company can duke it out on equal
> > terms with the big firm, and with great regularity, 
> > that is exactly what they do.
> Sometimes. And sometimes they don't. Sometimes half-a-dozen big boys just
> gang up on the smallest. 
> Anyway, your example ignores cross-subsidy whcih is the usal way to do
> this. 
> And bigger companies precisely *do* have a financial advantage over small
> - they can borrow money at lower rates and they have more ways of hedging.
> When they  operate in more than one part of the world a certain amount of
> hedging is built in.  In general economies of scale aren't, but finance is
> one area where they do work.
> There are more forms of competition than a price war Also if it comes to a
> *legal* slugging match the total amount
> >> Garbage (what we call rubbish over here) collection  is
> >> different again. It's not at all a nutural monopoly and
> >> there is nothing stopping anyone offering to do it as a
> >> business. But it is a natural for social ownership,
> > You mistake the political adventures of your local elite for
> > universal laws.  
> Just like you Americans do when you drivel on about guns in ways that most
> other people either don't care about or find repulsive?
> Anyway, I wasn't talking abou the  elite but  the majority. 
> > In some parts of the world rubbish collection is private.
> Yes, I know that. In some parts of this coutnry also. Anywere genuinly
> rural for a start. What's that got to do with what I said? 
> > There is no "natural monopoly" that is not somewhere 
> > a private industry, and often it is a private industry in a
> > place that is otherwise quite socialist.  Public and private
> > ownership reflect the accidents of politics and history more
> > than they reflect the natural characteristics of the industry
> > in dispute.
> I agree with this completely, but I don't think it invalidates anything we
> said. You are confusing 3 quite different questions:
> - social ownership versus private ownership
> - competition versus monopoly
> - free trade versus protection
> Ken Brown