Ok,I see your point.So my question becomes:Was or was not this country operating under the rules of free market capitalism back in say,1930,when there were all sorts of barriers,both from unions and businesses,that excluded blacks from certain types of jobs?
I would say,”no”,under the defintion you give.
When you used the word 'mindless' in describing what I have called 'arbitrary discrimination' (and appropriately so) it made me think about motivation. Most businessmen are motivated by production, profits and quality service. The businessman who is mindful of that will discriminate in hiring on substantive issues like education, experience and talent. The businessman who allows personal prejudices to affect his decisions will not be competitive. Thus racism, sexism and the like become self-limiting practices.
That kind of philosophy is progressive in practice not in name unlike the regressiveness of Progessive (communist) philosophy which promotes reverse racism as a remedy.