Senator Elizabeth Warren’s simple solutions, like breaking up Apple, won’t work

“You get points in politics for pointing out a problem that we are concerned with, or especially one that we can be made to think is particularly bad. You then get more points for proposing a solution, because we would all like to think there are answers to problems,” William Gallagher and Andrew O’Hara write for AppleInsider. “And then if you, as a politician, can move the burden of doing something about the problem on to someone else, you win the jackpot.”

“Just for political expediency, the one big technology company that is championing user security would then get the same treatment as the firms that are repeatedly and intentionally profiting from breaking our privacy,” Gallagher and O’Hara write. “When your aim is to get votes, you can keep it simple. When you get the votes and you are in power, then you have to deal with the realities. Senator Warren wants to avoid talking about those now, unless pressed to do so, because reality is complicated.”

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) (photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) (photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
“Consequently she has made no comment — because no one’s really pressed her on it yet — about how Apple makes iOS and macOS, how it runs the myriad iCloud services, and how it locks users into all of those. Just as Google locks you into its own walled garden of services and apps,” Gallagher and O’Hara write. “Instead, and again only when pushed to say it, she gives up the App Store. Break Apple away from its App Store and apparently, everything is fine. That is, everything is fine except for the loss of security that users will get hit with as a result. Take Apple out of its own store, and you end up with the same kind of mess that the Google Play store is. ”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: In Apple’s case, there is no monopoly (which is legal by the way), much less monopoly abuse (which is explicitly impossible given the nonexistence of a monopoly). You cannot abuse a monopoly and therefore face antitrust action when you do not have a monopoly. Duh.

Worldwide smartphone OS market share, February 2019:

• Android: 74.15%
• iOS: 23.28%

Again, it’ll be very interesting to see the breakdown of political donations out of Silicon Valley this cycle.

As for the App Store “antitrust” case in the U.S. Supreme Court: The U.S. Supreme Court should uphold existing legal precedent by finding in favor of Apple which is not a distributor that sells iPhone apps directly to consumers. App developers sell iPhone apps directly to consumers.

Setting aside the security implications, the Ninth Circuit decision should be overturned simply because Apple’s App Store customers are the app developers, not the app consumers.

Apple owns the shopping mall. The developers pay Apple for space within. The end customer buys their apps from the developers. Indirect purchasers of goods or services along a supply chain cannot seek remedies over antitrust claims.

See Illinois Brick Co. v. Illinois. — MacDailyNews, October 31, 2018

SEE ALSO:
Senator Elizabeth Warren wants to break up Apple, too – March 11, 2019
Trump administration backs Apple in U.S. Supreme Court over App Store antitrust suit – November 26, 2018
Apple defends App Store fees in U.S. Supreme Court – November 26, 2018
Apple defends App Store fees as U.S. Supreme Court weighs consumer suit – November 23, 2018
Apple wants U.S. Supreme Court to undo previous decision regarding an antitrust suit – October 31, 2018
U.S. Supreme Court will decide if Apple’s App Store is an anti-competitive monopoly – June 19, 2018
U.S. Supreme Court to consider Apple appeal in antitrust suit over App Store prices – June 18, 2018
US DOJ sides with Apple over App Store antitrust allegations in Supreme Court brief – May 10, 2018
Harris Poll: Corporate reputations can become politically polarized – February 9, 2017
9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals revives antitrust lawsuit against Apple – January 13, 2017
Silicon Valley donated 60 times more to Clinton than to Trump – November 7, 2016
99% of Silicon Valley’s political dollars are going to Hillary Clinton – October 25, 2016
Apple’s politics may be hurting its brand – June 29, 2016
Apple refuses to aid 2016 GOP presidential convention over Trump comments – June 18, 2016
Apple and Silicon Valley employees love Bernie Sanders. Donald Trump? Not so much – May 6, 2016
Apple among top employers of Bernie Sanders donors – April 20, 2016
Apple App Store antitrust complaint dismissed on procedural grounds by U.S. judge – August 16, 2013
Apple employees donate $15 to Obama for every $1 to Romney – July 27, 2012
Apple, other tech firm employees’ contributions favor Democrats over Republicans, Obama over Clinton – April 14, 2008
Apple CEO Steve Jobs: ‘I’m going to just stay away from all that political stuff’ – August 25, 2004

31 Comments

    1. But she is perfect specimen of todays Democrat. She and AOC and Ilhan Omar and Beto – they all know so much more than the people who run companies. They all intend to tell American companies and American citizens who to do. We really need super smart people like her to give orders. She was able after all to convince Harvard she was a Native American. Because of her cheekbones. She is brilliant.

      1. Just a few points:

        Anybody who refers to women as “squaws” is an embarrassment to the human race.
        Elizabeth Warren cannot be an embarrassment to Native Americans because she is not a Native American. In order to be Native American, one has to be a registered member of a federally recognized Indian tribe. Sen. Warren is not registered, has never been, and has never claimed to be. She has, with some justification, claimed to have Native American ancestry, but that is something completely different. Her conduct does not reflect on actual Native Americans in any way.
        Ms. Warren was not hired by Harvard because of her cheekbones, but because she was a full Professor of Law at the University of Pennsylvania (after a distinguished career at the University of Houston and University of Texas Law Schools) and one of the three most cited writers in America by courts and legal journals in the fields of Commercial Law and Bankrupcy. She stood pretty much alone as a scholar on consumer protection issues. You can certainly disagree with her positions on those issues, but accusing her of being stupid is just… stupid.
        I think Sen. Warren is wrong about the Apple App Store, but only because I do not think she understands the fact issues. She knows antitrust and consumer protection law better than almost anybody in the country.

        1. Just TWO points:

          1- You do not a acknowledge the signed Warren documents claiming Native American status that she walked back and apologized for false entries.

          2- You do not acknowledge as a lying liberal in defense of EVERYTHING PC and Democrat Defense, you are NOT a straight conservative as you posted several times…

          1. … must we put up with a conservative idiot accusing non-conservatives of the sort of things conservatives are guilty of?
            THIS time, it’s “lying” – like The Cinnamon Caesar has done 9,000(?) times since taking office. How about the “voting fraud” charges spammed against “liberals” but carried out only by Republicans in NC.

        2. Ok, GeoB, let me explain this again for anybody who missed the first three times I explained it to you:

          The terms “Native American” or “American Indian,” like “German” or “Italian,” can be used in several different senses. Legally, you aren’t German unless you are a current citizen of the Federal Republic of Germany entitled to a German passport. However, we all know people whose ancestors came to America 150 years ago who still answer “German” when asked their ethnicity. We all know people who march behind Italian flags on Columbus Day or wear green on St. Patrick’s Day. Nobody suggests that any of those people are lying. We recognize that they are merely proud of their ancestry.

          The Indian Nations are real nations with subsidiary sovereignty and formal rules for membership. Legally, you aren’t Native American unless you are registered as a member of a federally recognized tribe. In the case of most Oklahoma tribes like the Cherokee and Choctaw, you can only be registered if you can prove direct descent from someone who was listed as a member in 1907. Nevertheless, there is a much wider group of Americans who have Indian ancestors who were not registered for one reason or another. They are just as proud of their heritage as the Germans, Italians, and Irish.

          Until fairly recently, it was considered acceptable for someone who had Native ancestry but not tribal membership to claim an affinity with their ancestor’s tribe, just as a German-American or Irish-American might. People like Elizabeth Warren or me would proudly assert their heritage. The Indian Nations no longer tolerate this—they oppose anyone who is not a registered member claiming any Indian affinity at all. You are either Indian or not, with no middle ground. That’s why they oppose anyone who is not registered claiming Indian ancestry based on genealogical research or a DNA test.

          Tribal membership has nothing to do with genealogy or genetics. Already in 1907, many registered members of the Civilized Tribes were of mixed ancestry; some were only 1/2048 of the full blood. I am not registered, so I am not Choctaw. Since my grandmother was on the 1907 roll, I could become Choctaw simply by filling out some paperwork. That would not change my genealogy (grandchild of a Choctaw with a 1/256 quantum of Indian blood) or genetic makeup in the slightest.

          Like Senator Warren, I cannot call myself Indian today without creating a furor, but a few weeks from now I could be a full member of the Choctaw Nation with the same rights as any registered member of the full blood. Being Indian is a legal status, not an ethnicity.

          The only difference between me and the Senator is that she cannot show that her Cherokee ancestor was listed on the 1907 roll. Registration with the Dawes Commission was voluntary and not terribly easy. Many, many people of mixed ancestry who were living in white society chose not to register because being an Indian carried a social stigma. Many of the full blood refused to register because they opposed allowing the white authorities to define who was a tribal member. If they or their descendants changed their mind after 1907, it was too late.

          Using DNA to show Native ancestry is even less reliable than genealogy. Apart from our sex chromosomes, we each get exactly 50% of our DNA from each parent, but the half we get is randomly selected. We will rarely get exactly 25% from each grandparent; it is unlikely to be as low as 0 or as high as 50, but either is remotely possible. Repeat that roll of the dice through several generations and all you can say is that somebody with distinctively Native American DNA markers had a Native ancestor. It is perfectly possible for someone who can document a fairly recent genealogical ancestor of the full blood to inherit no markers at all.

          So, GeoB, I DO acknowledge that the Senator claimed that she was Native American in the same way that Paddy O’Reilly whose ancestors fled the Potato Famine might claim he was Irish. That does not mean that she claimed tribal rights, any more than Paddy could claim the right to vote in the Irish Republic.

          I do NOT acknowledge that I am “a lying liberal.” In terms of every principle that American conservatives have supported through most of my lifetime, such as support for constitutional government, I am far more conservative than the former Manhattan liberal that you have erected into a graven image.

          1. Not interested in deflections. Fox News published Warren’s signature FALSELY RECORDED her ethic background. Caught, guilty and roundly criticized in the media she was forced to apologize. I really don’t care about your Democrat Defense post.

            Nuff said…

        1. WRONG.

          Read your own article. Senator Warren proposes that Apple modify its iOS app store. That is a good idea that will increase competition.

          NOWHERE HAS SENATOR WARREN EVER PROPOSED TO “BREAK UP APPLE”.

          This level of reading comprehension is expected when politics is the first thought on the minds of the posters here and MDN condones the lies.

  1. Who’s more stupid, The democratic liberal candidates (Naive Warren, AOC, Tulsi Gabbard, Mazie Hirono, Beto the zero, or the Foolish liberal snowflake people who vote for them? The media supports these freaks because that is what Soros and the DNC want, the total destruction of the constitution, If you’re voting Dem, you’re a fool. Trump, who has dealt with NYC unions, politics and banks his entire life is a genius, and trying to to something great. It’s a process and if the ridiculous Dems would hang up this FAKE Russia collusion witch hunt, and stop covering up for Hillary and actually compromise and do something with TRUMP, the nation would further prosper, but the left wants power. So you have Warren wanting to break up companies she knows nothing about. Like Obama, She’s never even run a lemonade stand. What a fool

  2. In what other industry can a mere distributor decide whether a product can even exist?

    This is a semantic argument, which will only be recast as a new lawsuit.

    1. Probably in any industry where the Ford Motor Company can prohibit its competitors from marketing substandard Genuine Ford Parts because consumers will blame Ford when their car breaks down.

      The maker of iOS prohibits its competitors from marketing iOS apps that do not meet iOS app standards because the consumers will blame Apple when their phone acts wonky.

      1. The Ford Motor Company can also limit the distribution by patenting every aspect of their parts, which they do. So they can impose monopoly rule.

        iOS Apps have no such patent restriction. Also in Apple’s case, they are (if they are to be believed) both manufacturer AND distributor. Regardless, the outcome to the consumer and the developer is the same anticompetitive harm.

      2. If I look in the milk case at a Safeway, I will see Lucerne and Borden products side-by-side. The Lucerne is generally cheaper because Safeway owns Lucerne, so it has no wholesale-to-retail markup. There is no Market Pantry or Great Value milk because Safeway will not sell Target or Walmart house brands. How is that different from the Apple practice that you and Senator Warren want to forbid?

        1. The imposition of a forced exclusive relationship that impacts developers and one billion users.

          Again, its semantics. The distributor is one with the manufacturer. Bundling. Worse bundling than MS with IE.

  3. How do idiots like her even fathom she as a fraction of knowledge it would take to even think of such BS.

    She should be more worried about Facebook’s data mining practices which are shameful!!!

    1. Today, we celebrate the first quarter glorious anniversary of the New Green Deal. We have created, for the first time in all history, a garden of pure ideology—where each worker may bloom, secure from the pests purveying contradictory truths. Our Purification of Thoughts Other Than Ours is more powerful a weapon than any fleet or army on earth. We are one party, with one will, one resolve, one cause. Our enemies shall talk themselves to death, and we will bury them with their own confusion. We shall prevail!

      Uhhh, nah….

  4. MDN’s argument of Apple not having a monopoly by giving smartphone market share as evidence misses the point. It’s like saying the pre-breakup AT&T was not a monopoly because Japan’s NTT existed.

    Within the confines of the ‘country’ (iOS world if you will) Apple has a monopoly through their App Store. No other company may sell 3rd party iOS Apps through a non-Apple owned App Store to a non-modified iOS device.

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