Half a year ago I warned of the potentially grave consequences of the EU pursuing its aggressive “anti-monopoly” policy against profitable American firms, particularly Microsoft.
Unfortunately, last week Microsoft voluntarily made the first step in that direction by offering to only sell Windows 7 without Internet Explorer in Europe–ostensibly to give consumers “choice.” Unsurprisingly, the European Union rejects this offer and insists on fining Microsoft for being a bad competitor.
Punishing a company from leveraging its competitive advantage is like punishing Baskin Robbins for selling BR ice cream! Microsoft’s offer to sacrifice its own natural position and begin at ground zero is extremely courageous. Why is Google allowed to advertise Chrome on its home page? Why should Microsoft IE be a distinct entity from Windows when Safari is obviously an integral part of Macs? Doesn’t Apple have a broader control of the entire hardware-software stack than Windows? After all, Microsoft doesn’t build the laptop chassis.
Obviously there’s a non-business reason behind the EU’s aggressive pursuit of Microsoft. It needs the money. It is effectively forcing each working American to “donate” 100 bucks to Europe.
Europe must stop its abuse of foreign companies. It’s forcing companies like Microsoft into dangerous directions where there will no longer be software suites or packages, just single-function programs that are completely non-uniform and disintegrated.
What do you say to that?