I got inspired by this video explaining parts of the philosophy of Ayn Rand. It proposes that government should be financed with fees on contracts.
The example in the video was to pay fees to the judicial system for it to protect the contracts. Like an insurance.
The topic ‘Fees instead of taxes’ is something I would like to explore more. It is a very interesting topic. But there’s things I cannot understand. Would the courts stop protecting the rights of someone if the protection-fees were not paid in advance before a conflict arises? Would it be a recurring fee, annual? Would the fee be in proportion to the value of the protected property (contract)? Does this imply that all property would require an upfront fee for it to actually be considered yours in the legal system? Could you legally own anything without paying for the right to get legal protection in this social model?
What is the difference between ‘a voluntary annual fee on a property contract’ and ‘a property tax’? Except for the obvious, that the property tax also acts as a fee for police and fire protection. Would this be the simplest way of creating Ayn Rand -freedom, simply renaming the “property tax” to “fees on contracts”?
This relates closely to other articles I have found on steem:
Freedom in the form of ownership enforced by the legal system does literally cost money in the Ayn Rand model. Is this prefered? It is very similar to the line of thought of this piece:
Smart contracts on the blockchain, can they exist without a legal system enforcing them? Are the fees proposed by Ayn Rand also to be paid by Decentralized Autonomous Organizations?
I started to think about other fees compatible with a voluntary world.
A fee for using government currency, a transaction fee. Can it work if everyone always have the possibility to use other currencies? (Like we already do today. We can already pay all of our taxes using crypto currency because the government simply exchanges it into their preferred currency at the moment of your payment. Or you could exchange it yourself just before paying your fees. Same outcome.)
A fee for not circulating the government currency? A Demurrage fee. Would this be preferable to the inflation target that dilute the value of your government currency every year? Or would the voluntary use of the government currency be enough to transform the inflation tax into the equivalent of a voluntary fee on holding money out of circulation?
Well, I know we on steem are biased on this. We love inflation because it gives us zero transaction fees on this blockchain. This years dilution (inflation) of ~8% is no problem for us. So would a demurrage fee, limited to the the government currency, be a voluntary tax compatible with a voluntary world?
A fee for using the atmosphere, for hurting other people’s climate and their income? A fee on the carbon emissions in order to compensate the people hurt by climate change. Would this be compatible with a voluntary world? After all, it is voluntary to create emissions that hurt other people, a fee on something voluntary is voluntary.
Voluntary social security and voluntary healthcare.
With other words, if you actively opt out from the government insurances and the associated taxes, and don’t have a private insurance, you will not get treatment in case of an accident or illness. You will not get help if you lose your job without a private income insurance. Would this be enough to create freedom? (This solution is actually about giving everyone what they want. Government insurance to those that wants it by default, and no insurance to the people that prefer this way of living by actively opting out.)
And then the video goes into arguing that there would be a few freeriders in the Ayn Rand -social model. And to deal with these freeriders everyone should use a “whitelist” provided by the government when interacting with other people. A list containing the people that have paid their fees and “sufficient voluntary donations” to the government. People would then make social and economic sanctions against people that are not contributing to society, not in the list. Is this preferable to the current situation where governments are enforcing the economic sanctions as a service for all citizens? Is there really any difference?