Time will tell. But universal public education still stands as one of America's most successful government programs.
America's public schools have taken their share of criticism, and some of it may be warranted. But given what we expect them to do--meet the needs of students who come from very different economic, social, and cultural backgrounds and often act as caregivers to those students--our public schools do a pretty good job.
Pointer from Phil Izzo. The publication gives a litany of all the government activities for which we should be thankful.
You might as well read the whole thing. You paid for it.
Back in the 1960s, about one-third of all federal spending was devoted to building up these various types of capital. Now only half that share of federal spending goes to these purposes, and the Third Way report projects that public investment spending may be headed for just 5% of all federal spending in a few decades. Conversely, entitlement spending was only about 15% of all federal spending back in the 1960s. Now it's more than half of all federal spending, and the share is rising. The main functions of what the U.S. government actually does are shifting before our eyes.
Similarly, I think that the share of state and local spending going to current services is falling, while the share going to pay pensions to retired government workers is rising. At some point, Democrats who want to see effective state and local government are going to have to back pension reform for government workers, which creates another collision course, in this case with public sector unions.