Are cruise ships a libertarian paradise?

The cruise ship Voyager holds more than a half-million gallons of fuel, five tons of meat, forty thousand eggs, and more than two tons of flour.  Its eight thousand passengers form a floating mini-city.  The cruise ship operator provides a large number of public goods.  Its laws are private, and imposed by contract.  Do not expect democratic procedures.  To the extent they treat you well, it is due to reputational concerns.  Many of the doctors and nurses do not have proper governmental credentials.  The laborers come from around the world, and the manual labor typically comes from very poor countries, such as Honduras or the Philippines.  Customers choose across a large number of cruises, and typically seek out similar demographics.  The sector is close to tax-exempt and encounters only minimal regulation.

Those facts are from Kristoffer Garin’s Devils on the Deep Blue Sea: The Dreams, Schemes and Showdowns that Built America’s Cruise-Ship Empires, an interesting new book.  By the way, this book claims that fraud and food poisoning are rampant on cruise ships.

Here is an article about seasteads as a means of realizing libertarian ideals.  Randall Parker proposes cruise ships instead of nursing homes

Outside of a brief Galapagos jaunt, I’ve never been on a cruise — I would not be able to stand the socializing, bland food, and forced confinement — so I am in no position to judge.  But if I were a libertarian anarchist, this is what I would be studying. 


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