[ExI] libertarian (asteroid) defense

Damien Sullivan phoenix at ugcs.caltech.edu
Tue Mar 1 02:51:43 UTC 2011

On Mon, Feb 28, 2011 at 07:11:48PM -0700, Kelly Anderson wrote:

> As the government ceases to take care of things that really need to be
> taken care of, charities will pop up to meet those needs. In fact,
> that is how things used to work in the United States. Orphanages were
> supported by donors at one point, now they are supported by the
> government (albeit in the modified form of foster care) and nobody
> with money would even consider donating money to support a US
> orphanage today because they "already gave at the office". If the idea
> is that it's the government's job to pay for asteroid protection, then
> nobody would consider donating. If, on the other hand, it was not the
> government's job, then the Red Cross could launch a campaign to raise
> money to find rogue asteroids, and I think people would donate.

Some probably would.  But do you raise as much through individual
donations individually decided upon as you do through "mutual coercion,
mutally agreed upon"?  Would you raise enough?  What of the free rider
problem, and what do economic experiments tell us of willingness to keep
on donating for non-excludable goods?

Historically, how did orphanage funding quantity and orphanage quality
change between pure private and mostly public funding?

-xx- Damien X-) 

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