The deeper truths evoked by patent ships sailing an antitrust sea are three. First, free competition is the pervasive, baseline reality, the background norm; patent protection is the temporary, partial exception. Second, we grasp both patent and antitrust policy with a common science: economics. Third, although neither patent nor antitrust law doctrines are good tools for fixing fundamental problems in the other body of law, both bodies of law help us better understand the shortcomings of the other. I explore these ideas in turn, below.
Joseph Scott Miller, Patent Ships Sail an Antitrust Sea, 30 SEATTLE U. L. REV. 395 (2006).