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"An indictment of our society"?  If one looks at history, this is merely a "necessary means" of most great innovators in the real world that is full of competitors.  Henry Ford was a tyrant to his employees and his vendors and subcontractors;  Edison was similar but not quite as bad.  Aside from the fairy tale stories about the "giants of industry", it takes aggressive, savvy people to succeed in this world . . . many try; but most fail.  Society just needs to set what are reasonable limits to business practices.  And with the sophisitication and compleixity of our modern world, (patent hoarding, etc., it is becoming increasingly diffiuclt for those like Gates or Jobs to succeed.  There are real wold realities for innovators of new products and industries.