The Press: A License to Fix Prices

The power of the press is often exaggerated, but it was abundantly evident last week on Capitol Hill. Responding not to editorial thunder but to years of lobbying by publishers, the House passed a bill shielding the U.S. newspaper industry from antitrust laws. The vote was a lopsided 292 to 87. Since the Senate adopted a similar measure last January, 63 to 14, the legislation seems certain to become law.

The bills permit separately owned but jointly produced papers to pool profits and fix joint advertising rates that are not necessarily based on costs....

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