Business: Second-Hand Code

Up to last week when John Citizen decided to buy a new car, he would ask his dealer what allowance he would get on his old one. Armed with an offer, he would shop around among other dealers in the same price range until he got a higher bid. Back he would march to the first dealer, who, hating to lose a new-car sale, would be likely to boost his first offer. If John Citizen were shrewd, he could play one dealer off against another until he got an allowance far higher than his...