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I've posted this in the CMT thread also, but thought some readers of the e-reader thread might find it interesting.
You might want to read a forum discussion from last April on what readers were doing in retaliation of the rise in prices after the Agency War.
I've noticed new releases are down to $12.99 in most cases when the hardback comes out, but the other prices dropped back down.
They can set the prices to what ever they want, like anything else, but they also have to suffer the problem of lost sales.
Of course, I do think the older publishers would love it if ebooks went away, as well as used book stores as well as sites like this. They'd love to be the only source of books!