Conservatives: Don’t Fall for the Left’s Trap on Anti-Trust

By: Jon Decker

Bashing Big Tech is quickly becoming Washington D.C’s most popular bipartisan game. While Biden’s Federal Trade Commission (FTC) just launched an unprecedented crackdown on Facebook, many on the right — justly frustrated by platforms that censor their speech or subject them to dubious “fact checks” by left-wing outlets — now find themselves in support of the actions taken by Biden’s bureaucrats. Before we grant Biden’s FTC new powers to meddle in American businesses, let’s throw out a caution flag to make sure we are not playing directly into the Left’s hand.

Taking a birds-eye view at this issue, isn’t it strange that a Republican Senator like Josh Hawley has found himself in agreement with a far-left socialist like Senator Elizabeth Warren when it comes to breaking up America’s tech companies? In case it needed to be said, both of these Senators have very different motivations for advocating this policy. For this reason, it behooves the Hawleys of this world to consider the Left’s endgame before making a devil’s bargain to assist them on their mission.

Perhaps the best place to start examining liberal enthusiasm for breaking up tech companies is Biden’s FTC Chair Lina Khan. Khan is undoubtedly the most radical appointee of the Biden administration to date. The media has well publicized her desire to break up Big Tech, but she has never seen an industry she didn’t want to break up. Khan has warned Americans that “Big chocolate is about to get even bigger,” she opposed airline mergers while pining for the old Civil Aeronautics Board, and Khan has even advocated for trust-busting poultry processors. Khan has already mobilized the FTC’s army of bureaucrats to take on McDonalds ice cream machines  (great use of our tax dollars!) and, even more concerning, Chairperson Khan has made it clear she wishes to block a new Lockheed Martin merger — a move which has critical national defense implications. The fact that Khan plainly hates all big businesses, regardless of industry, has not rattled conservatives nearly enough – likely because of frustration over the tech giants.

But Lina Khan has not sat idle since assuming the chair – she is pushing proposals that will empower the far-left tremendously. In the past, FTC staffers would author subpoena documents that would be presented to its commissioners at random. This was done to ensure that any subpoena was written in a bipartisan manner, and the FTC historically relied on a majority decision to decide whether a subpoena should be issued. Khan is now working to change FTC rules to make it so staffers could submit a subpoena to the commissioner of their choice. In practice, this would allow FTC bureaucrats to “doctor shop” subpoenas to like-minded commissioners. This would give any single, unelected commissioner the power to target any company it chooses. Lina Khan’s proposal is a threat to American businesses across the board – not just tech giants – yet her radical policy agenda has been assisted by some who have fallen for the Left’s trojan horse and are eager to hand the government more authority.

With the socialist Left, everything is about assuming more power and control over our lives. If liberals thought for one millisecond that breaking up Big Tech companies would give them less control over the flow of information, they would be completely against it.  That much conservatives should agree on and acknowledge. The Left believes that by making these companies smaller and weaker they will be able to dominate them better than they do already. Socialists like Lina Khan hate American companies – and under Biden’s administration, they are rapidly amassing new powers to attack them. Conservatives shouldn’t make it so easy.  

Jon Decker is the executive director of the Committee to Unleash Prosperity

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