From Don Boudreaux at Cafe Hayek:
Free markets are extraordinarily – tightly – ceaselessly – impressively regulated. And nearly all of this regulation is spontaneous; it’s the result of the competitive market order. Unlike that species of regulation called “government regulation,” the kind of regulation that remains dominant in markets is not designed by government officials; it doesn’t amplify collective manias; it doesn’t treat consumers, workers, or business people as morons; and it’s not able to be captured and corrupted by special-interest groups.
Don’s post includes a link to his opinion piece in Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
The unceasing rivalry that produces spontaneous regulation is not “perfect.” Untoward outcomes will go unanticipated. But once they occur they become anticipated, and market rivals react quickly to preserve their reputations.
My study of how prosperity is reduced when privilege-seeking interest groups gain ever greater footholds via political process is here. Assuming we want to prosper, it is process of competition, not politics, that is the regulator we can trust.