Capitalism is the most powerful engine for prosperity in the history of humankind. Though imperfect, as are all human constructs, the free market is still the most effective antidote to poverty and, what’s more, it’s the most moral method for allocating scarce resources. As we were reminded by the late Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple, titan of industry and unapologetic capitalist, it’s pretty darn cool, too.
The free market is really nothing more than free people - consenting adults - who, unleashed from coercion, are allowed to voluntarily exchange their ideas, efforts and property when it benefits them to do so, assuming it harms no one else in the process. Each person’s rational self-interest ultimately serves not just the individual, but society as a whole because to achieve sustainable success in the free market - in other words, to satisfy your own wants and needs - you must first satisfy someone else’s. This forms the moral basis of capitalism, and Jobs did this amazingly well.