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The Free Market Provides

In the course of human history no other construct has been as powerful a tool for
prosperity and economic mobility as the free market of goods and services.
Historically speaking, it has taken many decades and much bloodshed to progress to
the relative freedom that both producers of capitol and consumers of goods now
enjoy. Since the collapse of the Roman Empire, the majority of the population have
been peasants, or in the worst case, serfs, with their entire lives tied to the land,
which they worked for their liege-lords, the landed nobility.

As feudalism eventually gave way to constitutional monarchy and then to the


democratic-republic, the social contract between noble and vassal evolved into an
actual contract between employer and employee. This shift from agrarian trading
blocks into mercantilism began a chain of events that eventually resulted in the
seemingly shifting byzantine morass of fiat currency and trust-based value that we
know today.

Whatever the detractors on the left may decry as “income inequality” or “rampant
greed” capitalism remains the most effective vehicle for engineering scientific
progress at the national level and quality of life at the personal level. This is due to
the innate merit-based structure of the free market. If a product or service is
inefficient, or too costly, it will quickly be replaced with a better, cheaper version
created by a competitor. This economic Darwinism ensures a level playing field for
all participants, particularly new producers that previously stood at a disadvantage
to established producers.

Consumers vote with their wallets; purchasing the goods of those commercial
entities they wish to support and abstaining from those they do not. In this way,
democracy becomes self-perpetuating, percolating through the private sector in an
election of market share, where the constituents are consumers and the candidates
are corporations. After the west shifted to a free trade model the average quality of
life has increased dramatically, including the creation of a substantial middle class
that previously was unsustainable.

This new middle class is integral to the overarching ethos that capitalism brings, a
general spirit of innovation and competition that encourages ever improving
technology and devices. The marvels we enjoy today such as our smart phones
would have been incapable of conception in both form and price without the advent
of capitalism.
Every year the most determined in the lower class climb the ladder of the free
market to reach the middle and upper classes by grasping, rung by rung, ever
upwards in a quest for economic prosperity.

This can be contrasted most harshly by the effect of radical protectionism and the
abolition of private property in the former soviet and soviet satellite nations in the
20th century. Communism falsely claims that we are all equal, and that to be
different is to be condemned, the quashing of the very human spirit. Ultimately,
these two economic systems come down to the triumph of the individual on one
hand, or the alluring conformity of collectivism on the other. In retrospect we know
that communism and central planning has led to the intended and accidental deaths
of untold millions, crushed under the oppression of the iron curtain. Like the feudal
serfs of old, toiling dully for Bolshevik overlords in a grey, monotone existence.

Capitalism, like Democracy itself is not a perfect system; there are flaws with any
system that requires an informed electorate. There is also the matter of oversight to
ensure fair completion, which must be balanced to avoid over-regulation and
strangulation of growth. The fundamental truth to the matter is that capitalism
ensures and reinforces the property rights and level of market agency that allow for
the American ideal of prosperity.