With enough money and pull, you can probably obtain a Playboy even in Iran. It’s easier for most American teenagers to get a dime-bag of pot than it is to get a six-pack of beer. I’ve heard stories (no doubt, some were exaggerations) of what the former Soviets would willingly exchange for the latest American rock album, or Levi’s Jeans. ad nauseum.
Black Markets exist everywhere that Free Markets are prohibited by legislation. This alone suggests the resiliency of markets, that co-operation and desire for mutual benefit cannot easily be slain. Recognize that the voluntary, or Black market, has existed probably as long as we’ve had legislation that would prefer to (and often does) put the proverbial wrench in the conveyor belt. Even in light of the staggering amount of legislation, restriction, impediment or other constructs of homo legislati, can you find at least, the most basic workings of people struggling to exist and intercourse freely.
Every oppressive regime that attempts to make the market its bitch has realized that the she does not “go gently into that good night,” and meets oppression at every turn with the ruthless determination of men and women who know infinitely more about their desires and how to satisfy them than any bureaucrat, anywhere, ever.
The truly amazing matter in all of this is not the repeated successes of the market throughout the centuries, but rather that there still exists any significant opposition to freedom.
Later: The “Crazy Roger and the Conveyor Belt” story.