This post is some kind of a response to the idiotic thinking in Hong Kong that all an individual needs to be successful in the society, as valued by the amount of income, are to work hard, accept what the market and whatever the system have to offer, have some but not a lot of talent (high intelligence, critical thinking, sensibility, social awareness and analytical skills are not required), not to complain and to work very very hard.
Here is Dani Rodrik:
…Adam Smith may have been right that “the propensity to truck, barter, and exchange” is innate to humans, but a panoply of non-market institutions is needed to realize this propensity.
Consider all that is required. Modern markets need an infrastructure of transport, logistics, and communication, much of it the result of public investments. They need systems of contract enforcement and property-rights protection. They need regulations to ensure that consumers make informed decisions, externalities are internalized, and market power is not abused. They need central banks and fiscal institutions to avert financial panics and moderate business cycles. They need social protections and safety nets to legitimize distributional outcomes.
Mark Thoma has this to say:
Those who are successful within these systems — those who pat themselves on the back and attribute their success to their own merit and then oppose taxes to pay for the institutions needed to have “well-functioning markets" — have a tendency to forget the contribution that society makes to their success.