Democracy is only allowed when the voters vote "correctly" according to the ruling classes. "Wrong" decisions will trigger court rulings voiding the vote. Or we'll just keep voting until people get it "right."
"If the US and Saudi Arabia are particularly hesitant to retaliate against Iran it is because they know now, contrary to what they might have believed a year ago, that a counter-attack will not be a cost-free exercise."
A prudent strategy would be to demand an end to the US policy of using its enormous military to constantly threaten, invade, and coerce foreign nations. Fortunately, a military like that is unlikely to cost a trillion dollars per year.
We can't just assume "public goods" like national defense benefit everyone. They come with real costs, and all the "services" that fall under the category of national defense are certainly not of equal use or benefit.