Internet

Bork says DOJ has strong case

The Netscape consultant issues a white paper in which he calls the antitrust case against Microsoft "rock solid."

Judge Robert Bork calls the antitrust case against Microsoft brought by the Justice Department "rock solid."

Bork, who is a consultant to Netscape Communications, wrote a white paper on the issue that was released by the Redmond rival.

In it, he argues that the legal precedent is another antitrust case, Lorain Journal vs. United States. Bork argues that "Microsoft possesses monopoly power," employs "exclusionary practices to retain its monopoly," and that "the Court of Appeals consent decree decision in no way forecloses the separate government suit" against the software giant.

Microsoft has denied any wrongdoing.

The arguments voiced by Bork are not new for him or for Netscape. But the so-called white paper does reveal a stepped-up lobbying effort against Microsoft. It comes as the software giant outlined its defense in legal papers filed yesterday. (See related story)

"Microsoft's exclusionary war proceeds along two lines," Bork said. "First, it has built its browser, Internet Explorer, into its Windows operating systems and will not allow computer manufacturers to remove it. Second, Microsoft employs a complex web of restrictive agreements designed to block the entry or growth of rivals.

"The purpose of both these tactics is to prevent what is now an incipient threat of competition for Windows from becoming a full-blown reality."

The white paper went on to say: "This is not a unique case. Devotion to the principles of a free market requires support of the Justice Department's case. The result for consumers will be lower prices and many more competitive sources of innovation."