By Xinfajia 2017-12-01
Confucius hated monopoly; but monopoly was condemned before the time of Confucius. Some forms of monopoly, however, may be necessary for and beneficial to the society. To treat Confucius' theory in accordance with modern categories, monopoly may be classified first into two grand divisions, private and public; then public monopoly into fiscal and social, and private monopoly into personal, legal, natural, and business. Confucius opposes private monopoly, with few exceptions, though he is very glad to give special honor and wealth to men who possess extraordinary virtue or ability for the sake of society. According to the principles of Confucius, there is no reason why the government should grant legal monopoly to anybody except for a limited one, such as copyrights and patents, that is, for a limited time to those who contribute something to society, but not to those who are simply favorites of the court. As to monopoly acquired by natural advantages, Confucius positively does not allow any private person to hold it. Confucius does not permit private persons to have business monopolies, either. If such monopolies are unavoidable, however, a tax on the profits from them is necessary in order to equalize the distribution of wealth.