When a great company, or even a great merchant, has twenty or thirty ships at sea, they may, as it were, insure one another. The premium saved upon them all, may more than compensate such losses as they are likely to meet with in the common course of chances. — Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations
Luckily, tens of thousands of pioneers wouldn’t have to be housed all in one starship. Spreading people out among multiple ships also spreads out the risk. Modular ships could dock together for trade and social gatherings, but travel separately so that disaster for one wouldn’t spell disaster for all, says Smith. When 10,000 people are housed in one starship, there’s a potential for a giant catastrophe to wipe out almost everyone onboard. But when 10,000 people are spread out over five ships of 2000 apiece, the damage is limited. — Sarah Fecht, How Many People Does It Take to Colonize Another Star System?
If you truly appreciate the importance of not putting too many eggs in the same basket… then you should really love the idea of allowing people to choose where their taxes go (pragmatarianism). People are naturally diverse… which means that demand is naturally diverse… which means that taxpayers really are not going to put too many tax dollars in too few baskets. Just like you and I really don’t put all the same items into our shopping carts.