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Reviews of Books ment is more skillful and more capable than public management, the com munity must forego some portion of the advantages of complete public con trol. Consequently Professor Wyman's view that public regulation is preferable to public ownership is sound. He per haps makes the over-confident assump tion that public regulation can offer an ideal solution of the trust question; in fact no perfect solution is possible at the present time. We cannot accept Professor Wyman's opinion that the law of monopoly and fair competition does not need to be set down in statute form. We have codi fied other branches of commercial law, and a uniform monopoly statute which could be adopted throughout the country in federal and state jurisdictions, is something toward which the modern business world is tending. But the times are hardly ripe for a model state statute, nor is it certain that much sub stantive law has not yet to be created. The first thing to do is to codify federal law and replace the Sherman act with a more specific statute. When a man who believes in competition so genuinely as Professor Wyman maintains that existing law is unobjectionable, it is not vain to hope for an agreement as to the terms of a statute legalizing monopoly under proper conditions. "It is not unlikely, in my judgment," writes Professor Ripley, "that the final solution of the so-called trust problem in the United States, whether for good or ill, may ultimately contain as one important feature the determination by governmental authority of reasonable prices for such prime necessities of life as milk, ice, coal, sugar, and oil, when produced under monopolistic condi tions." We hope that price-fixing will be long deferred. In efficiently man aged industries, where costs approach


a minimum, the prohibition of unreason able profits would alone keep prices at the proper level, and artificial stabil ity of price would check the effort for higher productive efficiency. In less skillfully conducted industries, a fixed price would perpetuate stagnation by virtually subsidizing inefficiency. But it does not follow that the Government, while not fixing prices, should not define a range through which prices may fluctuate, and should not determine whether a given price is within this range of reasonableness. From this standpoint the Government ought to fix maxi mum and minimum rates for railway traffic, through the orders of the Inter state Commerce Commission, but should not determine absolute rates. It is to be hoped, therefore, that if Professor Ripley's premonition of regulation of prices in other fields than that of trans portation should come true, the analogy of railway rates would be correctly ap plied. Professor Ripley has written a notable work treating of the history of American freight transporation since early in the nineteenth century, the history of ratemaking by the carriers, and the vicissi tudes of federal rate regulation. His book, which is to be followed by a sec ond volume treating of railway finance, represents the scholarly and able per formance of a large undertaking, and is likely to retain undisputed predomi nance as the standard authority in its particular field of economic history. . A suggestive solution of the problem of regulation of monopoly prices is offered by James M. Beck, in the paper printed with other valuable articles on the subject of "Industrial Competition and Combination," read last year before the American Academy of Political and Social Science. After advocating civil rather than criminal procedure under