For too long, tax-payer funds have been used to create aggressive weapons build-up, surveillance systems and more troops. This creates a lethal positive feed-back loop that begins to get worse for humanity over time as the ‘other’ builds the same in-kind.
In the 21st century we must seek to, in a Sagan-like manner, to work on behalf of all humanity. This will only happen when Nation States begin to use tax-payer funds to build collaboration tools. One example was the international space station. This was a collaboration system between nations. There could be many others. We could do this cheaply and it would provide a safe back channel should tensions flare.
Smart, sane, rational people would build these systems first.