I don’t often have the occasion to link to a post fisking one of my own so I’m taking this opportunity to do so. In this very interesting post MountainRunner presents the case for military contractors.
In my own defense I can only say that MountainRunner attacks an argument somewhat different from the one I was actually trying to make. I wasn’t criticizing the use of private companies by governments. I do believe that such use is problematic but I think that the problems are ones that can be managed.
There’s a fine line between private military companies hired by governments and our own volunteer military. The choice, as has been pointed out, is between using a mercenary army and using a slave army. We have mercenary doctors, lawyers, teachers, and architects (in the sense that they take money for their services).
What I was opposing was private individuals’ hiring of mercenary armies for their own purposes, however benevolent.
Meanwhile, I thank MountainRunner for the clarity and informed opinion he’s brought to the discussion.