Written by Erika Morris on February 24th, 2009

“The complex interactions – the food webs, dispersal systems, and mutual interdependencies – that thread through the rain forest are the true essence of tropical nature.” And so it is with the global market system. It was interesting to me to draw parallels between the natural phenomenon found in tropical nature, and the nature of the free market. For example, the idea that rainforest plants and flowers have grown and adapted to create alluring colors and attractive patterns to those they are trying to draw another creature. It is the same with those creating goods trying to expand it’s market; they create attractive advertisements to draw customers in. Another interesting part I thought was a quote from chapter10: “To a naturalist who understands natural selection, it is a dramatic embodiment of the notion that adaptation is not a simple matter of efficiency. All is compromise.” I never thought of the natural selection in nature as “compromise;” it was always to me, the survival of the fittest. I felt the same way about the free market system. Those that were weak or could not compete, were over taken by a new product or service, but as partakers of the free market system, that was a risk the participants were willing to take. As Schumpeter said, we all go into the game, knowing we will at some point lose. But it is a compromise. Although we may lose, there is always a new opportunity that we can take advantage of. It is a give and take system, one that involves compromise.

When I try to envision a free market system, I see a tangled, intricate, and extremely complex structure that extends beyond one person or one group of people. Not many things are as complex as this global system, but it can compare to the interdependecy and complexity that is observed in the tropical rainforests of South America.

– Erika


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