What would our lives be like if college were as free and unquestionable as military spending is now, but military spending arrived as an optional bill?
Those who didn't want it could choose not to pay. Those who wanted a coast guard, a national guard, and some anti-aircraft weapons could chip in a few bucks. Those who wanted a bit more than that could pay a bit more.
And those who wanted troops in 175 nations, aircraft carriers in every sea, enough nuclear weapons to destroy life on several planets, and fleets of drones with which to traumatize and antagonize several nations at once -- well, they could pay their $3,822, plus of course another $3,822 for anybody opting out.
What a naive proposal! Left to individual choice, the commons would be destroyed, and our national defense would crumble!
Really? People in the United States give over $300 billion to charity each year. Nobody forces them to. If they believed weapons and wars were the most important cause to donate their dollars to, they'd do it. No nation on earth spends $300 billion or anywhere close to it on its military, other than the United States.
And with the government no longer funding the military in its socialistic manner, it might choose instead to fund many of the humanitarian causes to which private charity is now largely devoted. Private giving could take care of the Pentagon.
But if wisdom about the counter-productive results of militarism spread, if nonviolent alternatives were learned, if free college had a positive impact on our collective intellect, and if the fact that we could end global poverty or halt global warming for a fraction of current military spending leaked out, who knows? Maybe militarism would fail in the free market.
I just love the last statement.