Outbound traffic is much cheaper than inbound traffic. You can dump outbound traffic off at the nearest meeting point with its destination network. But you have to carry inbound traffic from wherever the source network gives it to you.
That's a half-truth.
At any connection with the source network, you advertise the destinations you're willing to accept traffic for. Nothing requires you to accept packets for your entire global network at every location where you interconnect; that's something you choose (or choose not) to do.
Sending packets for destinations you did not advertise has long been deemed a violation of any peering agreement, subjecting the transgressor to disconnection.
Likewise, most service providers respect the destination network's advertised priority for each of its destinations. If the "AS path" is "shorter" at the distant connection point, packets are sent to the distant interconnection, not the nearby one. When offered at the same priority from each interconnection point, the packets do of course travel to the nearer one.
The few networks who disregard these advertised priorities and just send to the nearest interconnect tend to suffer from greater malfunction and customer ire.
They might agree to not exchange any money so long as each of them carries about 50% of the packages across the ocean. But if the US post office carries 80% of the packages across the ocean, some money is going to have to change hands to keep it fair.
That's totally disingenuous. The postal systems are sender-pays systems. Of course a portion of that payment must be passed forward to each of the postal systems in the delivery chain.
The Internet is a meet-in-the-middle system in which both sender and receiver pay to reach any of the midpoints where packets are exchanged. Regardless of any ratios, the packets transiting those interconnects have already been paid for in both directions.
If you want to convert to a sender-pays system where everybody gets free gigabit fiber in their homes but Netflix has to pay for access then sure, your example would make sense.