libertarians generally accept that the free market is the foundation of human prosperity. though the free market is generally considered capitalistic, it doesn't rule out the voluntary collectivism (usually on a smaller scale) of ideologies such as communism or syndicalism.
the free market is generally misunderstood by those lacking in economic education and is often confused by those with political agendas as regulated or managed markets. the market is nothing more than the sum of transactions between individuals. all transactions of which are perceived by the participants as beneficial, otherwise they wouldn't happen. for example: when we go to the grocery store to buy bread, we voluntarily exchange money for bread. this occurs because we value the bread more than we value the money it took to buy it - typically because we have much more money than bread. on the other hand, the grocery store has more bread than money and values your money more than the bread. the exchange occurs and everyone benefits. are mistakes made? of course, but this is an unavoidable consequence of human nature. with freedom comes the inevitable burden of responsibility.
when the market encounters regulation (the initiation of force to alter the trade habits of individuals) it is distorted. the efficiency of the market is reduced by the regulator inhibiting two or more parties from engaging in mutually beneficial trade, for whatever reason. one might protest: "don't we need regulation in order to protect individuals from fraud?" in short, "no". there are numerous problems with this idea -
1) because it is a fact of economics that value is subjective, meaning that different people are willing to pay different prices for the same items for various reasons, regulation can never be consistent. it will always overprotect some and underprotect others, because it can never know the subjective valuations of market participants.
2) the idea of regulation assumes that market participants are unable to decide for themselves what they should or shouldn't be doing or who they should or shouldn't be trading with. the market is a self-regulating entity. participants must be honest and strive for value, or risk losing their ability to prosper by having their reputations ruined or being undercut by competitors. because risk tolerance is different among market participants, no regulation can ever determine what is the correct amount of risk one can assume in any given transaction.
3) in order to establish such compulsory regulations, one must assume the right to subject the person and property of others to the ideals of the regulator which is contrary to the functioning of civilized society. because all humans have the same rights, if it is acceptable to subject one to the whims of another, then it must also be acceptable for all to subject all to whim and ideology, creating the hobbesian "war of all against all" with the strongest parties becoming de facto "governments".
because of the inherent benefit of transactions on the market to all participants, the free market is a virtually unlimited machine of growth and prosperity, bridging the gap between classes and lifting all participants to higher qualities of life. not only does the free market, in practice, create greater standards of living for all participants, but it also is inherently anti-authoritarian. freedom is not only a great luxury, but is also the best way for individuals to prosper.