Free market think-tank the Adam Smith Institute has been split into a dozen competing Adam Smith Institutes as a result of a ruling by the Competition Commission which found that the Institute, as the only one with that name, was exercising an anti-competitive monopoly.
A Commission spokesperson said: ‘We believe in giving consumers a wide range of choices when it comes to reports advocating free market solutions to social and political problems. In fact we were disappointed that the Institute had not realised this contradiction itself. We have therefore acted to break it up so that now every researcher is his or her own Adam Smith Institute. They will all be able to produce competing reports and consumers will be able to pick the ones whose conclusions they like best.’
The issue may not yet be over. Peter Forbes, CEO of Adam Smith Institute No.5, has applied to the Competition Commission to rule that it has acted anti-competitively by being the only Competition Commission.