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free market, competition, oligopolies

Is the United States truly an economy that promotes competition? Think about the markets where major oligopolies exist, for instance soft drinks/fast foods and automobile manufacturing, is there really a free market place or do the oligopolies/major corporations of America dominate?

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Thanks for an excellent assignment. This is an important issue and is huge to me.
As you know, I cannot do the work for you. I can only give you some notes and sources. You do the paper yourself. That's what Brain Mass is all about.

Of course, the western world no longer has a free market, but is ruled by a centralized system of corporate giants that can be collectively called a "cartel."

As you realize, the US prides itself on its free market where anyone, so long as they have the work ethic and moral backbone, can become a success. However, the worst enemy of the market (and this specifically American ideology) is oligarchy.
Oligarchy, as you know, is the rule of the economy and market but also the rule of the country and society as a whole by the owners of productive capital.

This oligarchy is what Marx meant by developed or monopoly capitalism (see here: http://monthlyreview.org/2004/10/01/monopoly-capitalism).

Here is a good quote from that article that you can cite:

The answer to this question must be that there is no absolute limit to cartellization. What exists rather is a tendency to the continuous spread of cartellization. Independent industries, as we have seen, fall more and more under the sway of the cartellized ones, ending up finally by being annexed by the cartellized ones. The result of this process is then a general cartel. The ...

Solution Summary

Issues of American free market, competition, oligopolies are clearly evaluated in this solution.