How anti-Apple, pro-Amazon manipulations may have resulted in less competition and higher prices for consumers

Sometimes when there's smoke, there's just smoke. And sometimes there are Kindles full of fire. Following the Wall Street Journal's scathing opinion piece last month, another media outlet is now asking questions about the conduct of the Department of Justice, the judge, and the external monitor. Kathleen Sharp goes so far as to call Amazon's crusade "bogus" in her headline on Slate:

Which gets to the heart of this bizarre case: The numbers show that, far from hurting the market, the publishers' and Apple's agency model actually helped it. They allowed Barnes & Noble to gain a foothold in the e-book market, provided relief to the independent brick-and-mortar stores, and gave consumers lower rather than higher prices.

But none of this will surface in Monday's hearing. Instead, the court will weigh the hurt feelings and escalating tensions in this convoluted case.

Whatever Apple's behavior, and the interpretation of it, and the law, the entire proceedings seem so ludicrous now that a re-visitation seems not only warranted, but necessary to serve the public good. I buy from both Amazon and Apple, and I want to retain both options, and more.