It's not their image but new research is showing a Hayekian bent to the little buggers:
"One key to an ant colony, for example, is that no one's in charge. No generals command ant warriors. No managers boss ant workers. The queen plays no role except to lay eggs. Even with half a million ants, a colony functions just fine with no management at allat least none that we would recognize. It relies instead upon countless interactions between individual ants, each of which is following simple rules of thumb. Scientists describe such a system as self-organizing."
It's called "swarm theory." Spontaneous order, anyone?