How to Defend Army Privatization

Today some guy who heads the Israel Defense Forces, I forgot his name and I don’t care to look it up, had the great idea (really great idea, no sarcasm) of getting rid of Army Radio.  It’s causing a stir here because people here think it’s normal for an army to control the media. Literally. The army has its own radio station. On it, idiots blather about all the dumb nonsense that all the politicians say all the time.

Now, that an army should not manage a radio station is shooting fish in a barrel. It’s mainly there to stick unwilling draftees who don’t want to do anything so they sit at Galatz and doodle pictures of fish or something.

The harder thing is to argue for a private army. Some guy commented on a post I wrote a long time ago on why the IDF should be privatized. He said the following:

I thought you were cool.  A private army would make a lot more money just confiscating people’s houses than on the people’s generous donations.  That’s why there is an elected civilian making these decisions.

This is how I responded.

It’s hard to confiscate houses when there are competing companies that are equally armed, protecting their clients’ houses. It would start a war, and that would deplete capital, wouldn’t work. What could work though if they wanted to confiscate houses is they could all work together and form a single army and then there would be no competition. They could just take the houses then, but it would be more efficient if they just took a cut of everyone’s salary in a giant protection racket, letting them keep their houses so as to live off the production.

They could even rename the protection racket a “social contract” and call the theft “taxes” and everyone would cheer them and thank them too.

Gosh that sounds familiar.

Let’s all realize that we already are conquered by our own governments. The only way competing private armies could possibly take over your property is if they teamed up together as a monopoly. And the only way private armies would team up in a cartel is if a government forced it. They can and often do take your property, especially in Israel. Consider 2005 Gush Katif and the northern Shomron where the army destroyed an entire city and left 10,000 people homeless.

They can do it. They can do it with impunity. Because it is a cartel. They can do it because there is no competition. Just wholesale destruction and suicide.

If Gaza’s Jews had their own private army to protect them against the government’s IDF, the IDF would have backed down. They would not have risked a civil war with Gaza’s Jewish community. The vast majority of Jews would not have stood for it, and the invading IDF would have laid down its own weapons rather than slaughter Gaza’s Jews. In the end, nothing would have happened. It would have been a standoff, and then it would have been over, and Gush Katif and the North Shomron would still be standing.

Except in the current scenario, where the government has a monopoly on the army supply, the entire community has been destroyed.

So if you want the army to be able to just take your property and destroy it, make sure it is a monopoly army controlled by an elected official. Otherwise, go private.



4 thoughts on “How to Defend Army Privatization

  1. The main thrust of your post was the government’s confiscation of property, as in the case of the 2005 Disengagement. That was an exceptional circumstance, and is not representative of the Israeli government arbitrarily taking property “often” and “with impunity”.

    Furthermore, as a Feiglin supporter, I’m surprised that you dismiss the need of Gaza’s Jews for self-protection so callously. As any nationalist will tell you, the Arabs would attack Jews even without the excuse of Israel’s existence, as they have in the past. The purely rational Homo Economicus may have no ethnic or religious motivations, but Israel’s neighbors surely do.

    Finally, what makes you think that 8,600 Gazan Jews would have had more capital than Iran-sponsored terrorism? The combined value of their assets could not possibly have competed with their potential attackers.

    • I’m a Feiglin supporter, that doesn’t mean I agree with everything he says. Iran’s Jewish community doesn’t get attacked. Most Jewish communities in Arab countries didn’t either, most of the time. Not any more than they were attacked by Christian countries. Neither would Gaza’s if there were no government causing a mess.

      Money is property. The government takes it and gives it to its army. All the time, with impunity.

      Arabs may attack Jews, but much less likely if there is no government army stirring up hornets nests. For that, organized self defense is enough.

      I don’t agree with Feiglin’s nationalist views on things. I am not a right wing nationalist. The only reason I support Feiglin is that he is the strongest candidate on liberty with the best understanding of liberty of any candidate in Israel. And I trust him to follow his own red lines, even though mine are different.

  2. It’s hardly “often” and “with impunity” if it’s only happened a handful of times in 67 years of Israel’s existence.

    Nonetheless, let’s presume that the Gaza Jewish community had its own army, even in this fantasy world where their daily survival for the 30+ years prior was provided for by the IDF — i.e. taxes paid by the rest of the country. Let’s say Gush Katif would have seceded from Israel proper, so there would be no standoff, since Israel proper would have no vested interest in dealing with this splinter faction.

    Now, what would the defense budget of the independent state of Gush Katif have been, and how long could it have feasibly defended 8,600 Jews against over 1 million Arabs?

    • Richie –

      You’re writing with a slave mentality. The army openly kidnaps its 18 year old children into slavery for 3 years. That is stealing people, and people’s right to their own bodies is the foundation of all property rights. You think the army kidnapping kids for 3 years is normal and necessary, hence your slave mentality. You use an Orwellian term for it, the “draft”. I call it what it is. It is constant, done with impunity.

      The army also collects the largest portion of the money stolen from me by the government.

      Your slave mentality also conditions you to a war mentality, where you assume that everyone wants to kill you. If there were no government army, the Arabs of Gaza would have no reason to want to kill Jews in the first place. They hate Jews because a government army of Jews was constantly terrorizing Gaza. Get rid of the problem, and those million Arabs would be trading partners. There would be no need to fight.

      Private security could take care of the rest.

      But if we are to assume those million Arabs would still want to kill 10,000 Jews just because, well then the 10,000 Jews have more capital than the million Arabs and could easily defend against them. 10,000 Jews with no State to harass them would be much more productive than 1,000,000 Arabs living off of UNRWA welfare. They would be able to afford much better defensive weapons.

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