A Weberian statement from the Econosophy blog:
To me the most fascinating justifying myth of all is the Myth of Free Markets. In this myth markets are Not-State; they are egalitarian; open; tolerate no elitism, no class, no snobbery; they are for Every Man. The myth, woven by elites of the state, says, ‘Work hard, and ye too can be as rich as the richest.’ This is the same as, ‘Be good on Earth, and ye shall have your reward in Heaven.’ I doubt there is a story anywhere told by any elite to any subjugated people that has a different dynamic; sacrifice now and later … who knows? The trick this time around is notionally to hive off part off the hierarchy and call it egalitarian, whereas it is in fact a resource-exploiting system as hierarchical as can be.
From a longer post on hierarchy and resources, well worth reading. I’m finding lately that a combination of functional systems and resource dependence can go a long way in theorizing about patterns of risk movement in the food crisis so I’m particularly drawn to this sort of thing at the moment.