On the top economic levels, the pressure toward innovation not infrequently erases the distinction between business-like strivings this side of the mores and sharp practices beyond the mores.  As Veblen observed, “It is not easy in any given case—indeed it is at times impossible until the courts have spoken—to say whether it is an instance of praiseworthy salesmanship or a penitentiary offense. The history of great American fortunes is threaded with strains toward institutionally dubious innovation as is attested by many tributes to the Robber Barons (1968, p. 195).