Some people have been conditioned to want what is scarce. Such conditioning is possible, and it is not necessary.
We are on the cusp of a robotics revolution that will see all forms of labour become universally abundant. The rate limiting factor is energy. Solar photovoltaic energy production has been on a steady exponential for over 40 years, and is currently delivering about 1% of current demand, or 14 years from meeting 100%. But that is a misleading figure, and most people would use a lot more energy if they had it available. Ensuring that every individual had 4KW continuous energy available would take 18 doubling, 36 years on current exponential – or three years if we decided to take it out of the realm of “market forces” and adopt it as a none market goal, and delivered a 2 month doubling time.
Why should any of us concern ourselves with what others want – surely that is their business – unless it involves us, at which point it becomes a matter for conversation and agreement.
What is of concern to all of us is what impacts we each have on the environment we all share (all aspects of environment – human, biological, and physical). So there is a test of reasonableness, and we can expect there to be considerable local variation on what groups consider reasonable, and within limits we need to accept such diversity.
Markets are all about exchange.
What happens when we all have the machinery and energy and matter we require to deliver what we want?
We don’t exchange anything for air now.
Air is arguably the single most important thing for any human being.
Automation makes possible the delivery of any good or service in similar such abundance.
Exchange fails in the face of such abundance.
Markets fail under such conditions.
There does exist the possibility of going beyond markets.
I agree, that historically, markets have done a lot to get us to where we are now.
Just as I noted that the anaerobic bacteria that once totally dominated this planet did a lot to get us to where we are, but are now found only in a restricted subset of environments.
Evolution does things like that, from time to time.
Evolution is not about grand balances – it is much more about dispositional complex systems which periodically adopt multiple stable state equilibria, and then moves beyond them into new possibilities.
A big part of freedom comes from security – and there is no security for the vast majority of humanity in our current market system.