Re: Ok, put it another way...
>Who will ensure these standards are kept current if no one will pay for them?
That's what you've got a "government" for. The purpose of the government is to lay down standards and enforce them. What's supposed to happen is that legislators decide the framework for laws ("we need standards to prevent ships from blowing up harbors") and the appropriate civil service department then organizes the standards, often coordinating with industry groups. Governments use international relations to negotiate treaties which can include determining international standards or reciprocal recognition of standards.
I know its fashionable these days to slag off 'government' and, especially if there's money to be made, to privatize its functions but the reality is that everyone needs it. Just take an everyday example of using and airliner to go from England to, say, the USA. Before ICAO organized all the international treaties and standards every international flight had to be licensed by the appropriate governments. There was no standards for aircraft design and testing, pilot training, flying practice, airport design -- nothing. Getting this organized took a lot of work. Since it does work everyone now takes it for granted ("so what do we need government for? Its just a waste of money...." Sounds familiar?)
What's likely to happen is that the price of legislation is going to be limited to the actual costs of publishing it.
BTW -- I resent the appellation "Freetards". Nothing is free, not even lunch.