That's why it's important to fill out the forms accurately and be in touch with the people who interpret the regulations. I found that the process usually goes smoothly once the appropriate people are involved with the significance (or insignificance) of the product.
I dealt with ITAR all the time too last year. When you mentioned Germany, I am reminded of a funny situation. Like here, they also have strict export restrictions. For one item that was already imported from there and in our hands, additional paperworked needed to be filled out so it was proposed to ship the item back to Germany and then immediately import it back to the US.
It varies by the base, but the MWR of each base does provide that. A larger base might have a large DVD library (that can be lent), a decent number of Internet connected PCs (only seem to be Windows), Xbox360s (football & FPS games are popular), PS3s, TVs, novels, pool tables, etc. I haven't seen any ereaders but movie players were being sold at some of the commisionaries to watch DVDs (both legit and pirated).
Still, if you have your own movie player, it is much more convenient to have your own DVDs to watch in your tent or while waiting for something.
I'll give an example. Assuming your tax rate is a flat 20% and your income before taxes is $100,000, then your tax bill will be $20,000. If you donate $10,000 to a charity, the $10,000 is tax deductible and reduces your taxable income from $100,000 down to $90,000. At $90,000, your tax bill is $18,000. Therefore, your $10,000 tax deductible donation reduced your tax bill by $2,000.
You'll also need servers, a network infrastructure, and personnel to maintain the equipment. Plus, all that equipment needs to be replace or upgraded every so often. And that's only the general equipment. If the department goes into specialized fields within CS, they'll also need special equipment.
There's the costs of continuously upgrading to the latest high end computers as we can't have the students learning on outdated slow equipment. There's the costs of servers and network infrastructure as modern computer systems are all connected. There's the cost of software licenses for the software running on those computers and these can get expensive. There's the cost of a dedicated IT team to maintain all that equipment, assuming that it is seperate from the general campus IT. For some universities, there's the cost of specialized gear such as virtual reality systems, robotics systems, cameras for computer vision, fiber optics equipment such as lasers, etc. It's not just office space and electricity.
I'll reply to your ancedote with mine.
I brought 10 100W CFLs about 8 years ago. Of that, 9 of them are still in use today in 2 locations, each being used between 4 - 6 hours per day. They turn on instantly but does take about a minute to reach their full brightness.
My electric bill dropped from almost $40/month down to $28/month when I made the switch.
I am tempted to try new bulbs but alas, do not like retiring working bulbs.