“Because it was Apple that got sued for violating the Sherman Antitrust Act, not Amazon, the federal judge who decided the case last July was able to ignore the facts on the ground,” Philip Elmer-DeWitt reports for Fortune.

“Namely, that: Amazon had monopoly control of the e-book market; Amazon kept competitors at bay by pricing publishers’ bestselling e-books below cost; [and] Amazon ruthlessly enforced its control. When challenged in 2010 by Macmillan, one of the big five publishers, Amazon simply pulled the ‘buy’ button off Macmillan’s books,” P.E.D. reports. “Apple tried to raise these facts in its defense, but U.S. District Judge Denise Cote, in the ruling that found that Apple had conspired with five publishers to raise the price of e-books, dismissed them.”

P.E.D. reports, “Her remedy, Judge Cote wrote, would ‘restore competition’ in the e-book market. This week, we got to see what restored competition looks like. To extract concessions from Hachette, the fourth largest publisher, Amazon has begun delaying delivery of some Hachette titles, removing others from its online bookstore, and in some cases — including J.K. Rowling’s new novel — refusing pre-orders altogether.””

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Once again, we repeat:

Wonderful job, inept U.S. DOJ, you’ve emboldened an abusive monopolist to run amuck, you clueless wonders.

To paraphrase Scott Turow, the president of the Author’s Guild: The irony of this bites hard: our government has killed real competition in order to save the appearance of competition.

The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help. – Ronald Reagan, August 12, 1986

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