Our government certainly creates issues with the way it inserts itself into commerce, but the European Commission’s involvement with Microsoft puts our central planners to shame:
The European Commission has said it will “closely monitor” the impact of Microsoft’s soon-to-be-launched Vista operating system on the market.
But in a statement the EC said that while it has been “informed” of Microsoft’s plans it has not given a “green light” to Vista’s delivery because “Microsoft must shoulder its own responsibilities to ensure that Vista is fully compliant with EC Treaty competition rules and in particular with the principles laid down in the March 2004 Commission antitrust decision concerning Microsoft”.
I’m sure Microsoft will be presumed innocent of any anti-socialist behavior until the EC proves that Microsoft is breaking the rules. I’m not serious about that belief because the phrase I highlighted says everything. (The rest is instructive, as well.) In a free market, which Europe clearly isn’t, customers get to decide if they like a company’s product. Instead, the EC stands in the way telling Europeans whether or not they’re allowed to like it. The European Commission is stupid.