Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Monday, December 11, 2017 05:58:00 AM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Opinion

Love for income inequality

By
25th-Oct-2014       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

Joel Schlosberg and Thomas L. Knapp :
Paul Krugman's titling of his case against Amazon.com ("Amazon's Monopsony Is Not OK," New York Times, October 19) immediately rings alarm bells.
The Nobel laureate economist surely understands that monopsony entails a sole buyer, not merely "a dominant buyer with the power to push prices down" in a particular market. Whatever its other faults, Amazon is no sole buyer, nor even part of an ogliopsony (a small cartel of buyers.)
Publishers can sell books through any number of retailers: Barnes & Noble. Apple. Google. Powell's. Kobo. Countless independent eBook and print-on-demand shops. Authors can even publish on their own websites, selling directly to readers. Amazon is an immensely popular and lucrative option for authors and publishers, but by no means the ONLY option.
Krugman's pretext contra Amazon is its current feud with major publisher Hachette, which denied Amazon an increased cut of the action on its titles. He senses an ominous power play in Amazon's retaliation by "delaying their delivery, raising their prices, and/or steering customers to other publishers".
It ain't pretty, but brick and mortar businesses do the equivalent every day: Shelving the most profitable items at eye level while less lucrative items get bottom-shelf space if they get any at all.
 "It's not just about the money," writes Krugman, always a sign that it is just about the money. Although Hachette is not Krugman's publisher, if it surrenders in the price war, other big boys like Krugman's publisher, W.W. Norton, won't bother to fight. So yes, Krugman's own bottom line is at stake.
But Krugman's ultimate reason for picking Hachette's dog in the fight between two sectors of big business - and his real beef with Amazon - seems to be, of all things, that Amazon reduces the very income inequality Krugman famously specializes in condemning.
Amazon's existence lowers book prices for readers in multifarious ways, from selection competition to electronic editions to its online marketplace for used copies. Yet Amazon has simultaneously diminished the cost for anyone to publish and sell books and earn money. By offering an alternative to the genuine near-monopoly of capital-intensive big publishers, Amazon distributes those lower prices and that new revenue more evenly among readers and authors.
Hachette and Krugman know they can't turn back the clock that produced Amazon's burgeoning marketplaces, preferring to benefit from them, but are convinced Amazon owes them a walled garden, sparing them price competition with the rabble. They want Amazon to preserve their income inequality at the expense of its customers.
Contra Krugman's beloved historical myth that "the robber baron era ended when we as a nation decided that some business tactics were out of line," any potential robber-baron power Amazon wields depends on the very same uniform, artificially large-scale federal transportation and postal shipping infrastructure that locked in the profits of the Gilded Age business cartels. Dismantling those subsidies, not propping up publishing's Hachettes, would be the real way to keep Amazon honest.

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

International »

Chinese billionaire-in-exile wants regime change in Beijing


AFP, New York :Billionaire Guo Wengui, who is seeking asylum in the United States after accusing officials in his native China of corruption, wants "a change of the regime" in Beijing and the introduction of democracy in the world's most populous country."I want to try and to have rule of ...

Editorial »

Aman harvest has no effect on rice market


PASSING the Aman harvest, rice price has not come down as government leaders earlier said and rather gone up to the dismay of the common people all over the country. Though farmers are happy with higher price; although they have suffered production loss at many places due to late receding ...

Cricket »

Players of Comilla Victorians celebrating after dismissal of Chris Gayle of Rangpur Riders during the Qualifier-2 match of the AKS Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) Twenty20 Cricket between Comilla Victorians and Rangpur Riders at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in the city's Mirpur on Sunday.


Sports »

Members of Rongdhanu RDS, the runners-up of the Hedayet Hossain Memorial Night Cricket Tournament pose for a photo session at Bangladesh Ground in Old Dhaka recently.


Entertainment »

Gauhar makes to sexiest Asian list for fourth consecutive time


For the fourth consecutive year, Bollywood actress and model Gauhar Khan has been voted to the top 10 list of ‘50 Sexiest Asian Women list’ in the world. It is an annual UK poll, which has been released in London recently. The actress, who is known for her choice of ...

City »

Convenor of Nagorik Oikya Mahmudur Rahman Manna speaking at a discussion organised by 'Mayer Dak, a social organisation at the Jatiya Press Club on Sunday with a call to bring back forced disappeared people to their mothers' laps.


International »

Ex-Fox news anchor Huddy claims Trump kissed her


Huff Post :A former Fox News anchorwoman who accused Bill O'Reilly of sexually harassing her in 2011 is now claiming that Donald Trump kissed her on the lips in an elevator.Juliet Huddy said Thursday morning on the "Mornin!!! With Bill Schulz" podcast (which has a paywall) that it happened around ...

Editorial »

Dust pollution takes toll in cities’ air


PRESENCE of dust and pollution in the air of our cities has reached alarming levels. It's happening mainly due to chaotic construction works, poor management and protracted traffic jams. According to Air Quality Index Report of the Department of Environment's (DoE) "Clean Air and Sustainable Project" earlier this month, air ...

Sports »

Chanchal emerges unbeaten champion in Blitz Chess Championship


BSS, Dhaka  :Chanchal Kumar Ghosh emerged as unbeaten champion in the Blitz Chess Championship with 6.5 points after the 7th round game on Friday at E Commerce Club hall room in Uttara. Five players finished in second to sixth position with 5.5 points after the tie breaking system. They are ...

Sports »

First-place Nao Kodaira (center) of Japan stands with second-place Lee Sang-hwa (left) of South Korea and third-place Arisa Go (right) of Japan after the women's 500 meters at a World Cup speedskating event Friday in Kearns, Utah.


Entertainment »

Akshay to back out of Gulshan Kumar's biopic?


 Akshay Kumar, who has films like Padman and 2.0 lined up for 2018, has created a stir after rumors of him stepping out of the film titled Mogul came to the forefront. Mogul is a biopic on the creator of T-series, Gulshan Kumar. According to the rumors, Akshay Kumar and ...

City »

BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, among others, at a discussion organised on the occasion of 10th founding anniversary of Bangladesh Kalyan Party at the Jatiya Press Club on Saturday.


Editorial »

Mysterious theft of fertiliser from Govt depots


DESPITE fertile land loss, inclement weather and depleting irrigation water, Bangladesh's agriculture keeps contributing a fifth of the GDP each year. Along with other factors, government's policy support in the form of fertiliser subsidy plays a big part here. But misappropriation of the key agro input such as fertiliser by ...

City »

`National Committee for the Implementation of Prime Minister`s Approved Gazetted Salaries` formed a human chain in front of the Jatiya Press Club on Friday to meet its demands.


.

Entertainment »

Are Virat and Anushka getting hitched?


Over the past few days, there are some reports doing the rounds that ace cricketer Virat Kohli and Bollywood starlet Anushka Sharma are getting married. According to these reports, both these love-birds will tie the knot in Italy.  The manager of Anushka has already slammed these reports by saying these ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news