A market is a place where people sell items. This is why it is called the marketplace. A free market is one in which people can freely sell what they want without anyone telling them what they can and cannot sell, how much they can sell it for, when they can sell it, or under what conditions they can sell it. Whenever anyone is made to comply with these or other similar requirements for the sale of their product, you do not have a free market.
The critics ask: What’s so great about having a free market and what’s so wrong with regulating the sale of items? The simplest answer is: Freedom! A longer answer is that managed economies have never worked.
America is the most prosperous nation in the world and the main reason why is because we are the freest people in the world. When people are free to do what they want they invent more things, invest more money, are willing to take more risks and, as a result, they end up in the long run, making more money.
On the other hand, people who can only do what someone else allows them to do are stifled in their imagination and they face greater risks that discourages rather than encourages the formation of businesses. Therefore, it isn’t surprising that such people often make less money which leads to a poorer economy, which then lowers the standard of living for everyone.
The critics argue that in a free market people can also go broke as easily as they can make money. While that is certainly true, in a free market people are also free to learn from their mistakes and start over again. Statistics show that the average millionaire has gone bankrupt three times before becoming successful.
The critics further argue that a free market leads to greed, corruption, and taking advantage of the customer. While that may be true of some companies, in a free market they don’t stay in business for very long. However, what the critics never mention is that greed, corruption, shoddy products, and false or misleading advertisement happens just as much in managed economies as it does in free markets, and sometimes more. Worse yet is that such companies can be prevented from going out of business by those who manage the market thereby allowing the greed and corruption to continue.
What the Tea Party wants is to live free, and that includes the marketplace because that’s what America is all about.