Should the federal government have prevented Apple from releasing the iPod until there were enough competitors to make a "market"?
Actually, only one seller is required to make a market. It's unadulterated bullshit that, as the interventionists claim, "markets require competition." Even if there is only one seller of a good or service, consumers always have a choice: they can choose not to buy.
The only reason cable companies are "monopolistic" is because local governments give them the monopolies. Cablevision is the only cable company that Westchester County permits to operate, even though RCN would be more than happy to get my business (and I'd be more than happy to give it to them). Cablevision's service is atrocious enough, but I can't imagine how much worse it would be without satellite competitors.
I stick with Cablevision for its cable modem service, but even then it's recently given me so many problems that I'm about to get Verizon's FIOS. And there would be many, many more people offering high-speed connections of all types, if only government would stop sodomizing the market.
That's the best thing about government intervention: when you ruin the market with regulation, you can claim the market doesn't work and regulate further.
It's one thing when Rep Barney Franks tries to over regulate the mortgage industry at the start of a housing slump, his constituents expect that. Seeing a Bush appointee go this far is disheartening.
After I wrote that essay that lauded Michael Powell, he showed a regulatory streak on language and "wardrobe malfunctions" that I didn't cheer, but it was at least in character.