Common goal: The Tipline for 1 June 2020

Questions of inequality play little role in modern competition case law, but civil rights law and antitrust have not always been mutually exclusive. In 1982, the US Supreme Court unanimously reversed the Mississippi Supreme Court’s finding that 130 black residents of Claiborne County, Mississippi, had violated state antitrust law by boycotting the businesses of white merchants in the area. “History teaches that special dangers are associated with conspiratorial activity,” Justice John Paul Stevens wrote for the majority. “And yet one of the foundations of our society is the right of individuals to combine with other persons in pursuit of a common goal by lawful means.”

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