The Everyday Marvels of the Market

Written by Steven Horwitz for The Future of Freedom Foundation.

Those of us who live in largely market-based economies can too easily take for granted what we might call the everyday marvels of the market. We find ourselves with things that would have amazed and mystified people just a couple of generations ago. If we think of the marvels the market delivers, we normally think of technology, but fancy technology is hardly the only everyday marvel, or even the most important.

Even the most basic of human wants reveals these marvels. A simple trip through the grocery store in even the smallest of towns reveals a variety of fruits and vegetables that goes far beyond what was there even a generation ago in anywhere but the fanciest supermarkets in wealthy neighborhoods. Items I never even heard of as a child are commonplace in rural America. More miraculous is that these items are available in the dead of winter, having traveled in some cases thousands of miles to get there. Few of our ancestors, even 60 or 70 years ago, would have had access to that variety in the middle of winter.
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