Now that Vivendi and General Electric have struck a deal, cable giant Comcast is expected to to buy a controlling stake in NBC-Universal making it the biggest proposed media merger in recent memory. Comcast, the largest cable company and the largest residential Internet service provider in the US would be adding the NBC, Universal Studios, MSNBC, CNBC, USA Network, Telemundo, the Weather Channel, Hulu.com, 27 television stations and a host of other properties. In a era of monopolies that crush innovation, stifle competition, and lock new businesses out of the marketplace - and in particular when that marketplace includes an important part of our commons like the NEWS, why are we allowing such a merger to take place? Isn't it time to reverse Reagan's policy of ignoring the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, and, like with Jimmy Carter busting up AT&T, go back to bringing some of these transnational behemoths back down to size?
Last week New York based China Labor Watch put out a report that claims Wal-Mart’s five supplier factories in China subject workers to “illegal and degrading conditions.” The report also focused on Wal-Mart’s pricing structure. In the company’s attempt to keep prices low, the factories must manufacture goods with cheap labor and poisoned and unsafe workplaces that would be illegal in the US. Walmart's slogan is "Save Money. Live Better," they just didn't intend for that for their workers. At least Jefferson looked into the eyes of his slaves - we instead have outsourced our slaves so we don't have to see them.