Most people take the natural order for granted. Physics just works. Nobody argues with it. Biology happens. Is it good? Is it bad? Whatever. It works. Evolution is actually a pretty neat idea. It takes a long time, but at least you can see progress. It’s implemented through natural selection. The strong survive, the weak are gradually weeded out, and the fitness of each species increases over time.
Without the process of natural selection, none of the species we know today would have evolved. The species they replaced along the way would have eventually died out because they couldn’t adapt to the changing environment. Looking at it from a scientific perspective, it’s a remarkably functional design.
From a personal perspective, though, it seems rather harsh. After all, the strong survive at the expense of the weak. Is that right? Is that socially acceptable? Wouldn’t it be more “equitable” to require the strong to sacrifice so the weak could be indefinitely sustained?
What would become of a species if you were to eliminate the process of natural selection because it seems unfair to those who don’t make the cut? Eliminating the natural mechanism by which a species adapts and improves would result in its eventual extinction, the entire species having been sacrificed for the sake of preserving its weakest specimens.
The free market is the socio-economic corollary of natural selection. Products that fill a need survive, those that don’t fail. Products and services are constantly adapting to better fill the needs of the marketplace. The law of supply and demand is not something economists invented; it’s an observation of the way a natural law applies to the principles of economics.
Just as competition among species drives evolution, and competition within species improves the fitness of the species, competition among goods and services drives constant improvement and innovation that benefits the overall population. Just as tampering with the process of natural selection would inevitably lead to a decline in the fitness and sustainability of a species, so tampering in the free market necessarily works to the detriment of society.