Who Would Protect Ships at Sea?

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Without a collective Armed Forces, who would protect people and assets (ships, planes, plants, homes, buildings, harbors, electric lines, etc.)?

The answer is that owners of the assets would protect them, or pay for their protection themselves. Homeowners buy insurance to protect their homes. They bear the costs, apart from government interference. The same system would work for all sorts of assets. The owner of a utility plant would bear the cost of protecting it, and so would all business owners for the assets they own. They’d have to recoup the cost in the price of the good or service. The cost would then be paid by users (or more accurately be expected to be paid). We’d see collectives and associations form voluntarily for protection where they were economic. Owners of ships would protect their ships, or pay for the protection. There are already large insurance markets for shipping.

The existing system pools all government revenues and then creates a huge set of commons problems as everyone fights to gain access to the pool. This is both unjust and inefficient. The result is that larger companies with political pull get subsidies for protecting their goods and services. Oil companies get very large subsidies by having U.S. armed forces protecting the process every step of the way. All taxpayers pay, even those who consume fewer oil products or don’t drive automobiles or don’t use products derived from oil.

2:03 pm on August 20, 2013