GECON200(Non-Honors)-Topic #1 Public Goods, Private Goods, and Taxation (Redux)

Some goods that many people take for granted are considered public goods, in that they are nonrival and nonexcludable. Tyler Cowen discusses how the inability to charge free-riders for public goods, like national defense, often lead to the government providing the good because there is no private firm who would be willing to produce the good. Cowen also discusses how certain goods may be better off if they were provided by the private sector with a strong allocation of property rights. There are imperfections to both the public and private solution in many cases, since there may be market failures or failures to negotiate that the government might handle better. Situations where there are externalities or natural monopolies are also prime circumstances for government regulation.

Government activities are funded through the revenues gained from local, state, and federal taxes. Each of the different levels of taxation is used to pay for different government goods. Local taxes, such as property taxes, pay for things like public primary and secondary schools. State taxes help fund state roadways, state parks, and subsidize public university education (such as JMU). Federal taxes pay for national defense, Medicare, and interstate highways. In any case, if one level of government pays for a good that you use without paying your taxes, you are reaping a benefit without incurring an appropriate cost.

Politicians are currently jostling back and forth on either raising taxes or cutting spending. Elizabeth Warren, who is running for Senate in Massachusetts, recently stated:

There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear: you moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for; you hired workers the rest of us paid to educate; you were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory, and hire someone to protect against this, because of the work the rest of us did. Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea? God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.

President Obama echoed this statement when he said:

If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

Russ Roberts, an economist at George Mason University in Virginia, responded to Ms. Warren’s comments saying that the government should focus more on provision of public goods. Dr. Roberts says the government’s provision of public education is so bad that people should ask for refunds from the government, and notes that many of the governments subsidies for agricultural goods and fuels are not actually providing public goods. Presidential candidate Mitt Romney and other Repubicans took to the GOP convention with speeches focused on the “We Built That!” theme, criticizing President Obama’s statement.

You can learn more about government programs, including both taxes and spending by looking at it a few different ways. The Washington Post put together a nice display showing growth (or shrinkage) in taxes and spending since President Reagan through today.  In this graphic you can see that the budget deficit was only $300 billion in 2007, the last year before the crisis and recession began. Today, the government anticipates a deficit of $1.1 trillion. You should remember however, that this deficit is at the federal level only. The Center for Budget Policies and Priorities does a nice breakdown of where government spending goes today, but balancing the budget will continue to be a very difficult task. The Concord Coalition has created a tool to help you think about how difficult it might be to balance the budget. You can try to do it yourself, and while doing so try to think of the political difficulties of raising taxes or cutting spending on any individual group.

Questions you might want to answer:
I would like you to think about the government’s role in the economy when it comes to both taxes and spending. DO NOT try to answer all of these questions, just focus on one topic. Also, try to think about your comment from different angles. To write a brief comment, read the previous comments, compose your thought in a Word document, and paste it in the comment box below. The more original and factually supported your comment, the better your grade will be. Finally, your comment will appear ONLY AFTER IT IS APPROVED. Please don’t email me asking where it is, it often takes a while for me to get to it.

  • Do you agree with Ms. Warren/President Obama or Dr. Roberts regarding the government’s provision of certain goods? If you agree with Ms. Warren/President Obama or Dr. Roberts cite a concrete example, giving facts and numbers supporting your opinion. In particular, you might want to focus on one of the following:
  • Education: Do you believe the government should play a role in providing public education? At which level should most of this spending and planning occur? If you think education should be privately provided, and not subsidized or paid for by the government, how would most people be educated? Think of societies where all education is privately provided and compare them to the U.S.? Should the federal government have more or less control over the education system?
  • Taxes: Should the government try to manipulate prices through the tax code? By giving subsidies to oil, gas, and food producers, consumers are able to pay lower prices for their goods. Is this a proper way of motivating consumption and trade?
  • Defense: Should the government cut spending on the military? If so, how do you propose the government provides protection to their citizens. What have some said about how our safety would be harmed if less were spent on the military.
  • Roads and Construction: What should the government do about trying to increase spending on roads and bridges? Should the government continue to provide these goods to the public? Why or why not? Are there times when the government should consider privatizing roads and bridges?
  • Regulations: Do  you believe regulations like fire codes should be implemented by the government? Or should we let the free market decide how many exits buildings have and the number of smoke detectors in a building. Would a voluntary regulation make any difference in the economy? This example certainly extends beyond fire codes to include many other business regulations. Do you think the government should end regulations on environmental issues to help job (and therefore revenue) growth?

39 thoughts on “GECON200(Non-Honors)-Topic #1 Public Goods, Private Goods, and Taxation (Redux)”

  1. The government should have a very minimal role in the economy, including both regulations and taxes. Some regulations may be necessary, but overall, it is both costly to the government and the private sector. A 2009 article in The Detroit News shows that businesses spent over $1.17 trillion in 2008 to deal with federal regulations and the government spent an additional $49.1 billion to enforce said regulations (Crews and Young). Businesses are being hurt by these regulations it is becoming very expensive to run a business in a country that was once the “Land of Opportunity”. If businesses feel that it is too expensive to maintain and go out of business, it creates a cycle of layoffs, unemployment, and lack of economic growth.

    Crews, Clyde Wayne, and Ryan Young. “Stimulate Economy Through Deregulation.”
         Competitive Enterprise Institute. Competitive Enterprise Institute, 10
         July 2010. Web. 2 Oct. 2012. .

  2. The government should help provide public education for the youth through high school. While we are currently 14th in reading, 25th in math, and 17th in science compared to the other developed countries of the world, there are vast improvements that need to be made to remain one of the elite countries. The issue is not on how much money the US on education, but what the US is paying for in education. By “spending more on paying quality teachers and less on state-of-the-art school facilities, new textbooks, and administrators” (Koebler) the quality of the education received in public systems can drastically improve. By using the education systems of other countries, we may be able to improve our current scores. By improving the public education system, we are investing in the future of our country, and fix many of our current problems.

  3. Most roads and bridges in the United States are funded by state and federal taxes today, though it was not always this way. According to Gabriel Roth of the CATO institute, roads in the 19th and early 20th century U.S. (including interstate roads called turnpikes) were constructed by private firms that were funded purely by private capital from the use of tolls. (Roth). This seems like a viable method to revisit, and would increase market participation, potentially increase the number of jobs, and decrease tax rates associated with transportation. To bring up a point favoring public construction of roads, the government undoubtedly meets safety and consistency expectations across the country.

    Also, much of the focus seems to be centered on improving roads and general traffic flow in already well-developed urban areas. (Leduc & Wilson). While this would in fact increase the productivity in these “Hub-like” areas, the real need for improvement lies in the rural areas connecting the arterial roads and more efficiently bringing agricultural products into the main transport areas for further distribution.

    If the Government is to continue to provide roadways and bridges as a public good, it should only focus on areas that show consistent need for improvement in structure and safety and will benefit economic efficiency the greatest.

    “Federal Highway Funding.” Downsizing the Federal Government. CATO Institute, n.p. Web. June 2010.
    Leduc, Silvian; Wilson Daniel. “Roads to Prosperity or Bridges to Nowhere? Theory and Evidence on the Impact of Public Infrastructure Investment.” Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco: Working Paper Series. 27-28. Web. 4 October. 2012.

  4. The US government spends more on tertiary education (undergrad/ postgrad) than any other country in the world and only has the fourth highest percentage of population (of OECD countries) with such education. This would be acceptable if the quality of education was substantially more enriching and enhancing on its students in comparison to other countries. But in fact, the United States had a graduation rate of 77% in 2010, which trailed the OECD average of 84%.
    The country that was rated “the most educated” was Canada who rightfully deserved its place due to its 51% population with territory education (the highest amongst OCED countries) and a much larger graduation rate, while only spending 6.1% of its GDP on education, marginally less than the average. This demonstrates slapping money at the problem doesn’t solve much in education, like President Obama proposed in the debate tonight. Especially when there is no such thing as free money, the more the government provides money to the education system, the more mandates and rules involving grants come into place.
    OECD’s Chief Media Officer Matthias Rumpf in interview said, “Private spending on educational institutions relative to public expenditure is much larger in the countries with the highest rates of college-equivalent education.”
    In other words, the key to improving education is not raising government funding for education, rather removing the layer of government and letting the people who want education to take it upon themselves to become further educated. Frankly, the proportion of people who are unmotivated to learn beyond a high school degree won’t learn anyways and the required minimum is enough before they start their occupations. Referencing back to the debate tonight once more, the topic of Education was raised numerously and should continue to be a talking topic in the near future.

    *OECD- The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development
    (includes most major developed countries)

    Citation:
    Sauter, Michael, and Alexander Hess. “The Most Educated Countries in the World.” 24/7 Wall St. 24 09 2012, Web. 3 Oct. 2012.

  5. While the security of our country is one of the most important areas to invest in, the amount of money the United States government actually spends on protection is too much. In 2012, the government spent a little less than a trillion dollars on defense, and left every other country in the world below them in below them in the amount spent on defense. Because of the fact that our country is struggling economically, one would think that future spending in defense will be cut. Contrary to popular belief, defense is actually projected to have a 16% increase in spending per year by 2012. The government needs to realize that the United States is does not have to spend as much money as it does to on defense to still have the most dominant military in the world. Because our military is one significant advantage that the United States has over China, it is still a good idea to invest a large amount of money in defense. But having a strong military can only get a country so far. The government needs to spend more time and money to find a way to make the United States a dominant force in numerous fields. People should not be worried about their safety any more than they should at this current time because the United States will still have the strongest military in the world in we cut back on spending.
    Citation:
    “Always More, or Else.” The Economist. The Economist Newspaper, 01 Dec. 2011. Web. 06 Oct. 2012. .

  6. Before our federal government began insisting on expanding its powers, one of its main purposes was defense. I think most everyone would agree that this is vital to the survival of America. But when does spending become too much spending? The government never knows. According to a U.S. News article by David Brodwin, America spends nearly five times as much on defense as China. Not only that, but the article also mentions that we spend twice as much as China, Russia, The United Kingdom, and France all combined. Just under a trillion dollars seems to be a little much when it comes to keeping our citizens safe.
    As Ron Paul puts it, there’s no need to be the “world’s policeman” (Stossel and Kendall). We have military spread out across 130 different nations (Snyder). Is spending money on attempting to inflict our economic views on other countries really considered defense spending? Responding to attacks is understandable, but not all of these 130 nations have attacked us, nor do many of them have the means to.
    The view that America needs to be the world’s military powerhouse is also understandable. There are certainly countries that would attack us if we became too weak. But spending to the extent we do is just unnecessary.
    Works Cited:
    Brodwin, David. “How to Safely Cut U.S. Defense Spending.” U.S. News. N.p., 21 Jun 2012. Web. 6 Oct 2012. .
    Snyder, Michael. “Ridiculous Military Spending: 12 Facts That Show America Can’t Afford To Police The World Anymore.” Business Insider. N.p., 13 Dec 2010. Web. 6 Oct 2012. .
    Stossel, John, and Kristina Kendall. “Ron Paul Unplugged.”ABC News. N.p., 11 Dec 2007. Web. 6 Oct 2012. .

  7. If government didn’t provide education most of us “college students” wouldn’t be in school right now. Which would lead to business not having any employees or “skilled workers” to get the job done; leading to a chain reaction of demand going down for products because little to no one can afford them. According to the New York Times “one of the most important outcomes of a college education is learning how to learn, and they also are prepared to change careers as the world changes around them”.
    Not saying that the government should pay for all education such as elementary, middle school and high school; those should be paid for on the state and local levels. This would relieve the Government of some responsibilities and debt but definitely not all of it because the Government would have to cut back on many programs.

    Citation:
    Howard Cohen. (2003). The New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/ref/college/collegespecial2/coll_aascu_povcohen.html

  8. Government should play a role to regulate corporate firms; this will allow competition in our free market economy. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act is a governmental interference on financial corporations such as J.P Morgan. This allows government to force corporations’ top management to certify the accuracy of financial information so they don’t mislead the general public. According to an article by professors of public policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government of Harvard University, this “enforcement not only has major consequences for individual and corporate violators, but it also can affect the overall credibility of a regulatory system. Enforcement actions send a message to the broader public. They both deter bad actors and level the competitive playing field.” In another words without regulation, corporations could hurt the people who invest in their company by not having enough and accurate information.
    Corporations might not like the government to put a hand on their business, because this will cause them opportunity costs. With such regulation, they may have to publish their detailed and accurate financial status, which may cause to general public not to invest in their firms. As a result of this Act, some companies faced huge losses, says Lynn Turner, a former chief accountant of the SEC and now a professor at Colorado State University, “there’s hardly a comparison between the $63 billion lost by Enron common stockholders alone and, say, even a tripling of audit fees to $3.6 billion.”
    Yes, government regulation might hurt corporations, but it benefits general public by eliminating misleading information and creating competition among businesses.

    Citation:
    Cary Coglianese, Thomas J. Haeley, Elizabeth K. Keating, Micheal L. Michel. “The Role of Government in Corporate.” Harvard University, 2004. Web. Oct 5, 2012.
    Fass, Allison. “One Year Later, The Impact Of Sarbanes-Oxley.” Forbes, July 22 2003. Web. Oct 5, 2012. < http://www.forbes.com/2003/07/22/cz_af_0722sarbanes.html

  9. It is important for the government to have some control over education. Although, the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), is not the best way of providing it. This bill has great intensions, but results in unintended consequences. The problem with NCLB lies within the required testing. When schools don’t meet specific score expectations, they are punished by lack of school funding while the schools who are already better off, get aided. This backfires on the schools that don’t preform as expected, without funding they will never have the resources needed in order to achieve such requirements of the government. The goal of NCLB is to reach 100 percent proficiency by the year 2014, which is nearly impossible. Each proficiency test is covered by the same material and is given to all students, both general and special education. It is unrealistic for the government to include the special needs students in this screening because they will never be able to comprehend the same material as the other students. You also have to consider the students that don’t put in any effort when taking these tests because they know it won’t affect their grade. Let’s face it, these are high school students and many of them just don’t care and will write off these tests since it has no direct benefit to them. Even though NCLB may be hurting our education system, the government should have some sort of control. Giving people the option whether to send their children to a public or private school is a great privilege. Public schooling allows children to receive an education no matter their income or race. Without this option many people wouldn’t attend school at all because the price of a private education is through the roof.

  10. I agree with the statements made above by President Obama and Ms. Warren. I believe that public goods are very important to the United States, specifically education. Although only 2% of the federal budget goes to education (Center for Budget policies and Priorities), I feel that this two percent is extremely important. Having free public education for children through high school gives children who come from not well off families the opportunity to be educated and successful. It gives them a way to get out of poverty, something they would not have if education was provided by private sectors. If education was not funded by the government, only people who could afford to get an education. The United States was built on the fact of the “American Dream” that anyone who wants to be successful has the opportunity to be. You could be the poorest person, but if you have the will to be successful, you have the opportunity. However, if public education is not provided, how could children who live in poverty and cannot afford this education have the opportunity to better themselves? The government has a role to provide education through high school so children who cannot afford to pay for education have the opportunity to go father in life. It is important for citizens to have proper education and this should be considered when deciding the education budget.

  11. Education is a prime part of today’s society, and a college degree is now crucial to a successful future. A study drawn up by the Alliance For Excellent Education shows that the unemployment rate of high school drop outs has risen to well above 15%, while the unemployment of those that graduated high school is at 9.4%. College graduates were found to be at only 4.4% unemployment. This study indicates that the further the education, the more likelihood of getting a job. So who is paying for education?

    Education is paid for by the federal, state and local governments. It covers over 14% of federal government spending (0.9 trillion dollars) and nearly 30% of state and local government spending. Need not forget that much of this (if not all of it) is paid for, in turn, by tax payers.

    Some people and economist view educational spending as a waste of time and money especially because after age 18, it becomes a choice to be educated. This thought, however, has been accounted for through incentives. The IRS offers tax incentives to those pursuing a higher education. There are also many scholarships and student loans available to pay for college, so those who simply cannot afford it can still get a higher education. There should be no such thing as financial advantage with regards to education and therefore it should be the government’s role in supplying and regulating it.

    If education was not provided for as a public good, many people would not choose to educate themselves. Therefore, the federal government should play a major role in funding education. Education will lead to higher employment which is exactly what this country needs to get back on its feet. State and local governments should also be very much involved with education. Without government involvement, many of us would not be in college, and some may not have even gone to high school. It is in higher education that one develops the skills to enter the working world so the federal government should bear most of the costs of higher education. This higher education is what leads to jobs, which is the foundation for economic growth. State and local governments, however, should have a primary responsibility in funding lower education, for this provides much of the basic knowledge and learning skills one must acquire to move to the next level. All in all, education funding should be a major role of the government at all levels. Education is not a part of the budget that should be cut in any means.

    Citations:
    Public Education Policy and Progress. Alliance For Excellent Education, 2009. Web.
    “Total Budgeted1 2013 Government Spending.” Government Spending in United States: Federal State Local for 2013. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Oct. 2012. .

  12. The government should continue to provide roads and bridges to the public but there are times when private roads and bridges are okay. To start off with those who say that if transportation infrastructure were cut, this would fix our budget problem are incorrect. According to “Policy Basics: Where Do Our Federal Tax Dollars Go?” transportation infrastructure only makes up about 3% of our budget. Some may argue that all roads and bridges should become private but what happens if workers of this private business were to go on strike or if the private company went bankrupt? Roads would become ruined and bridges unusable causing people not be able to get to work, causing people not being able to make money, causing money to not be spent, and finally causing the economy to suffer just from roads becoming non usable.

    An example of when private roads can be helpful is in Northern Virginia. The Dulles Toll Road allows for travelers to pay a fee that allows them to avoid traffic. According to the Washington Times the government could not afford to build another road so a private road in this case was successful. I believe the only time private roads should exist is when there is an alternate route on a public road that can be taken instead.

    Peters, Eric. “The Free Market: Private Roads.” The Free Market: Private Roads. Washington Times, n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .
    “Policy Basics: Where Do Our Federal Tax Dollars Go?” Center on Budget and Policy Priorites. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

  13. Cut government spending, because we are already a powerhouse and the only feasible option to reduce funding to is the military, right? Being the largest spender, there is no reason to continue to develop our military further. While some have proposed this as the proper perspective, the innovations and security supported by military funding have clearly not been considered. Declared by President Eisenhower, “We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence.. the potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this… endanger our liberties or democratic processes.” Kennedy stated that US military spending is used to help other countries, not just our own and with “your help man will be… free and independent.” Even though defense spending has risen, “the increases are not funding a lot of new technology, but rather existing weapon programs and health care requirements. ‘When you get through all of that, the actual increase in defense spending is around $10 billion.’” Ten billion dollars is considerably less than other countries are spending on military. If spending is reduced, Buck Mckeon vowed, “”I will not be the Armed Services Committee chairman who presides over the crippling of our military” and the President’s own defense secretary fears the US will become a paper tiger, “a person or thing that appears threatening but is ineffectual.” Currently we are spending the most overall on military spending, but this benefit wards off other countries from attacking us and causes us to have a higher status. This status should be protected. Another consideration is that $1 goes a lot further in other countries and “that as a percentage of GDP the Saudi’s are way out front in military spending,” of 8.7%, while the USA spends just 4.7%. Another forgotten development funded by military spending is the internet. The internet was “designed to share mainframe computing power and to establish a secure military communications network… The internet owes its very existence to the state and to state funding.” Without spending allotted to the military, such an invaluable invention would not have been possible. If we reduce spending, more invaluable creations may never be designed. It is necessary to increase military funding to increase security, improve technological developments, and protect other countries. Just as Congressman Bartlett stated, “I understand that we want a balanced budget. I understand there are other priorities, but if we don’t do this right, no other priority matters.”

    http://mises.org/daily/2211
    http://www.nationaldefensemagazine.org/archive/2002/June/Pages/Congressmen4060.aspx
    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/paper+tiger
    http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2011/12/defence-spending
    http://www.harisingh.com/newsYouTubeJFK.htm
    http://www.fluther.com/149190/why-does-the-usa-need-a-defense-budget-so-large/

  14. The government needs to focus more on the future of our nation and allocate more of its spending towards education. This would improve the state of our nation in more facets than people may think. First off, by improving the quality of individuals intellectually and socially, it would put us at an advantage over other nations in rates of entrance in elite schools and universities. In turn, it would greatly increase the cognitive ability of individuals coming from the U.S. Certain students who are highly accomplished in comparison to their demographic are still getting rejected from elite universities because academically, they’re not equal to students from areas of higher affluence (Easton, 2012). In many areas where socioeconomic status is low, there is a correlation with increased crime rate and a low overall standard of living. With the help of the government, improving the education system of our nation would increase jobs for teachers and improve the quality of the individual in many aspects not just academically.
    The Congressional Budget Office estimated last year that the cuts to the federal budget in 2013 would take away $590 million from spending on the Head Start Program. The National Education Association said these cuts would eliminate 80,000 of the 962,000 slots for children and more than 30,000 jobs of teachers, aides and administrators in the program (Emmanuel, 2012).

    Sources:
    Easton, Billy. “Albany’s Unkindest Cut of All.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 26 May 2012. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .
    Emmanuel, Adeshina. “Head Start Fears Impact Of Potential Budget Cuts.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 27 July 2012. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

  15. The National Security budget for 2012 is an estimated 881 billion dollars, about 24% of our yearly expenditures. This, in my opinion, is far too much money to be spent in this area. One solution would be to increase the usage of Unmanned Aircraft Systems, more commonly known as drones. Drones are aircrafts controlled by pilots on the ground or pre-programmed to carry out a specific mission. The usage of drones would cut spending in certain areas of national security and complete dangerous tasks so human lives could be saved. On the other hand, many are suspicious that drones are inaccurate and many of the problems pertaining to them are kept hidden. Drones do seem to be a better alternative than sending soldiers in sometimes. Even though there are drawbacks (aren’t there to everything?) drones seem like the best idea to utilize when thinking about cutting spending on national security. The cost of spending less on national security and using drones is the unintentional killing of innocent civilians in the process. Because it is hard to gather specific information about just how many unintentional deaths drones have caused, it is hard to determine the exact danger of using them.

    Cole, Chris, and Jim Wright. “What Are Drones?” Drone Wars UK. N.p., Jan. 2010. Web. 07 Oct. 2012.
    .

    Foust, Joshua. “Targeted Killing, Pro and Con: What to Make of U.S. Drone Strikes in Pakistan.” The
    Atlantic. The Atlantic Monthly Group, 26 Sept. 2012. Web. 07 Oct. 2012. .

  16. I believe it is important that we continue to provide a free education for everyone instead of changing education to be private only. If we had to pay for an education many would not have the funds to be able to pay for the education. This would lead to a decrease in the amount of people that graduate high school and also the national literacy rate. Also, the US is known as a big exporter in the world and if we got rid of the public school system we could potential lose that status over time. We will have to outsource more jobs to other countries because we won’t have enough people with a high enough education to do all of the jobs needed to produce a certain good.

  17. The government should increase spending on roads and bridges. President Obama said he would use the money“we’re no longer spending on war to pay down our debt and put more people back to work – rebuilding roads and bridges; schools and runways. After two wars that have cost us thousands of lives and over a trillion dollars, it’s time to do some nation-building right here at home.” So many construction workers have been laid off, so if the government was to continue providing these goods to the public, it would benefit us because it would provide more jobs as well as provide safer roads for the public.

    Today, many states are leasing their roads to private companies, and even allowing private companies to build new roads. “United States Public Interest Research Group warns that while privatization may seem like a quick fix, it can lead to higher tolls for drivers, lost revenues for states, and loss of control over transportation decisions by the public. The deals attract states with the promise of up-front cash, and relief from having to maintain and operate roads.” Even though the report warns that privatization often has long-term costs. “Some companies that have leased roads for 75 years or 99 years could recoup their investments in less than 20 years, the report noted — shortchanging states of future revenue.” Some of the states have promised not to build new roads near the private toll roads, or “to compensate the operators of the private roads for lost toll revenues” if they do build new roads because it prevents drivers from using those roads. I think that even if the states want the short-term cash, they still wouldn’t agree to bad deals that would hurt their state in the long run. Today’s society is the perfect time for the government to privatize roads and bridges. “Many private companies and investors are gearing up for more privatization deals, sometimes called public-private partnerships. And many states are ramping up their efforts to attract more outside investment.” There are great benefits to privately financing toll roads, particularly new roads that need to be built. For example the Ohio Turnpike,” is a road that could use “major reconstruction in the next decade or two…. Given that the toll road industry has a very good track record of financing and building,” I believe that privatization is acceptable for this situation.

    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/09/06/obama-sets-goals-lays-out-differences-with-romney-in-acceptance-address/?iref=allsearch
    http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/01/going-down-the-private-road-route/
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/16/toll-road-privatization_n_878169.html?page=2

  18. In order to achieve the maximum market efficiency, the government should have less involvement to the market. The example that I would like to mention about unsuccessful government intervention is called the “Cash for Clunkers” program. It was popular among the car dealers but most of them are foreign cars and trunks, only half of them are made in the US. This program revealed that “taxpayers ultimately paid $24,000 per car sold under the cash for clunkers program.” In the end, Cash for Clunkers was officially shut down on September 30, 2011. Unfortunately, the results of this program showing “only 31,000 jobs were created from the $16 billion spent.” From this example, we can see that government intervention in economy does not play a positive influence on economy.

    Works Cited
    Chaddock, Gail Russell. “Cash for Clunkers Is Popular, but Is It Truly a US Stimulus?” Axessnews. World City Press., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .
    GIBBS, NANCY. “Cash for Clunkers: The Bribery Stimulus.” Time. Time, 27 Aug. 2009. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

  19. While the security of our citizens is very important, the US spends an exorbitant amount on defense/military, and the government should cut spending in the military. In the area of defense, the US spends six times as much as the next-biggest military power, China, and the US composes 58% of the world’s top ten military spenders (Wing). Defense spending was 20% of the total budget in 2011 and with a defense budget of 718 billion dollars, it is not likely that citizens will no longer be safe due to some cuts in defense spending (“Policy Basics: Where Do Our Federal Tax Dollars Go?”). This amount of spending exceeds the point of defense and crosses into the area of “world police” power. The U.S. military has a total of about 700 military bases around the world and is in nearly 130 different countries (Michael). This “world police” military budget can no longer be supported with the deficit climbing rapidly, and some cuts need to be made. It is more than plausible for the US to cut some spending on the military and apply that money to other fields where needed, or simply save the money and cut the deficit by that much more.
    Works Cited:
    Michael. “16 Reasons Why The United States Can No Longer Afford To Be The Police Of The World.” 16 Reasons Why The United States Can No Longer Afford To Be The Police Of The World. N.p., 2 July 2011. Web. 08 Oct. 2012.
    “Policy Basics: Where Do Our Federal Tax Dollars Go?” Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. N.p., 13 Aug. 2012. Web. 08 Oct. 2012.
    Wing, Nick. “Fact Of The Day #8: U.S. Defense Spending Dwarfs Rest Of The World.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 06 Aug. 2012. Web. 08 Oct. 2012.

  20. I believe that the government needs to implement more environmental regulations. There is no debate that more regulations add to the costs of businesses. However, I believe we have a moral obligation to protect the environment, and government regulations are one of the only ways to restrict companies from adversely affecting it. According to the Washington Post, “Economists who have studied the matter say that there is little evidence that regulations cause massive job loss in the economy, and that rolling them back would not lead to a boom in job creation.” As industrial pollution continues to increase, government regulations need to address the health and safety effects of environmental pollution. Societal benefit outweighs the cost incurred by companies to adjust to new regulations.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/does-government-regulation-really-kill-jobs-economists-say-overall-effect-minimal/2011/10/19/gIQALRF5IN_story_2.html

  21. As a political science major, it’s ironic that I’m more of a purist who believes in limited or no government. But I work with what I’ve got and in regards to defense, in which the United States holds the crown in for most spending, I say the United States should remove their troops from every nation around the world, cut the defense budget from $703 billion to $300 billion, making for a 43% budget cut, and they should consolidate the branches, thus providing for an entire national defense in which the soldiers are compensated through the taxpayers. The tax will amount to roughly $20 a year per employed citizen, which funds the jobs for the soldiers and the appropriate military equipment to ensure we’re an unobtrusive nation of domestic defense and foreign aid when called upon. However, free trade and interaction with other nations shouldn’t be impaired by these cuts and changes in military strategy; if anything, it should stimulate free trade and foreign policy.

    Safety is a serious concern when considering a nation of such size and reputation on the world stage. While some may say a reduction in the size and spending of the military may lead to greater threats of harm or potential attacks on our well being, it has yet to be determined as to whether a moderately isolationistic approach to foreign military interaction would benefit the well-being of Americans. There is potential that if we vacate ourselves from foreign nations and remain a neutral nation of cautious national defense and aid, we would appear more favorable in the eyes of other nations, and thus the threats of attacks may decline or even subside entirely. However, such a method hasn’t been implemented in all of American history, even all the way back to the establishment of Jamestown when the military was still an oppressive force, claiming already owned land for themselves. We’re creatures of habit, and perhaps it’s time to take a different approach.

  22. The United States government spends more money on defense than any country in the world. We actually spend more on defense than the next thirteen governments do combined. In 2011, the federal government spent $711 billion on defense spending, which is equivalent to about 20% of all the spending on that level of government (Peter G. Peterson Foundation). Our military has been seen as the strongest in the world for many years, but the amount of money we put into it is outrageous.
    Much of our money goes to conflicts in faraway countries, as opposed to our own defense (Michael). We have seemingly become the world’s protectors, and spend much of this money on transportation and equipment for these battles in foreign countries. There are U.S. military bases in most of the world’s countries and yet we continue to worry that we will be attacked. However, if we lower defense too much, some believe we will be the subject of assaults by many terrorist organizations. Despite this belief, in this economic climate that the world is facing, we should be focusing on local issues, and cut military spending by backing out of some of these foreign countries that have little to no impact on us.
    Although as Americans we have always felt a sense of duty to help out those in need, we need to worry about our own problems as well. We can afford to cut a few billion dollars in order to help lower the deficit to prevent us from falling too far into debt.
    Citations:
    Michael. “16 Reasons Why the U.S. Can No Longer Afford to be the Police of the World.” End of the American Dream. The American Dream, 2011. Web. 8 Oct 2012.
    “U.S. Defense Spending Compared to Other Countries.” Peter G. Peterson Foundation. Peter G. Peterson Foundation, 2012. Web. 8 Oct 2012.

  23. Education as a public good is a crucial part of the United States. Without government spending on public education, far more people would not even bother with it. Many people cannot even afford college tuition, so privatizing education would make it that much more difficult. According to an article on NPR, “The average college senior in the U.S. now carries $25,000 in student loan debt at graduation.” If the government were to cut spending on public education, student loan debt would be even more tremendous. Some may argue that the more debt a student has, the more they are motivated to find a better job to pay it off, but the availability of jobs for college graduates is not where it used to be. The Baltimore Sun issued an article stating that “Over the last year, unemployment has averaged 9.4 percent for college graduates under age 25” and that people in that 19 percent of people in that age range are underemployed in 2012. A lot of the times this is due to the fact that graduates are simply unqualified. Making higher education more affordable would be a huge move to bettering the country for generations to come. According to an article issued by Forbes, “More than 25 percent of U.S. students fail to graduate high school in four years; for Hispanic and African-American students, the number approaches 40 percent.” If students feel unmotivated for college because they know they cannot afford it, dropping out seems to be their only choice. Unless the government makes extensive education reforms, the United States is going to continue declining economically. The smarter our citizens are now, the smarter the government and future generations will be in the future.

    Citations:

    Crotty, J. (2012, March 3). 7 Signs That U.S. Education Decline Is Jeopardizing Its
    National Security. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/ jamesmarshallcrotty/2012/03/26/7-signs-that-americas-educational-decline-is-jeopardizing-its-national-security/

    Mirabella, L. (2012, May 12). Life After College: high unemployment and depressed
    wages. Retrieved from http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2012-05-12/business/bs-bz-jobs-college-grads-20120512_1_college-degree-college-grads-job-market

    NPR. (2012, June 26) What’s Driving College Costs Higher? Retrieved from
    http://www.npr.org/2012/06/26/155766786/whats-driving-college-costs-higher

  24. I agree with President Obama and Dr. Warren’s statement regarding the usage of public goods and how people can not be where they are today without government spending on these type of goods. However, I do believe the government could cut spending on certain things to reduce our current deficit. One way we could cut spending and remain to be a top country is to increase our efficiency in spending in our education systems as well as our military spending. We could do these things by training teachers to be better and increase wages for teachers but not have as many teachers to increase the competitiveness of the industry. With these better teachers, not only will the leadership in our country increase in quality but our national deficit will start steadily decreasing rather than increasing.

  25. The government should lower taxes while increase spending when the economy is struggling. The government provides many people benefits without reaping an actual cost such as funding for schools, national defense, and the construction of public roadways. These benefits are positive externalities. The government also plays a role in preventing negative externalities such as pollution and certain safety regulations. In order for the government to do all this, they must hire a large amount of people and these jobs are all funded by government spending. By lowering spending, this will cause the government to layoff many people that have government jobs and increase unemployment.

    The government should also lower taxes so people will have more disposable income and in return feel wealthier. And when people and businesses have more money, they are willing to spend more. According to Keynesian economics, government spending and decreasing tax rates are the best ways to stimulate aggregate demand and help economic growth.

  26. I absolutely disagree with the President and Ms. Warren. Has anyone else read “Atlas Shrugged” by Ayn Rand? If you find yourself in agreement with their opinions you need to read the book to see how it ends. It was written in 1957, but the entire premise is the end of all innovation and creativity due to society adopting these principles. When I read the book years ago I thought, “that is way too stupid to ever really happen”, now I get cold chills when I hear or read things like this from our leaders. I think the “social contract” is fulfilled by a company paying its taxes, paying its employees, obeying the rules that govern business and ethically conducting its business.

    The other topic I’d like to comment on is the reduction in defense. In the recent Presidential debate, President Obama was quite clear on his intention to reduce defense spending. An article in the Huffington Post discussed the outrageous amount spent on defense, saying, “The United States spends 58 percent of the total defense dollars paid out by the world’s top 10 military powers, which combined for $1.19 trillion in military funding in 2011. With its unparalleled global reach, the US outspends China, the next-biggest military power, by nearly 6-to-1.” 965.7 billion dollars spent in 2012 alone on defense? Is that necessary? We spend 20 billion on nuclear weapons a year, another 6 billion on disposing of nuclear waste and cleaning the damaging effects, 79.1 billion in 2008 alone on “research, development, testing and evaluation”, and billions more on weapons and vehicles that have not yet even been put into use. The statement that “the increases are not funding a lot of new technology, but rather existing weapon programs and health care requirements” used in another comment by the National Defense Magazine is completely incorrect. If billions or trillions of dollars were spent to prevent 9/11 part II, who would say that was a bad investment? But the fact is that these billions are not focused on this security. The amount of spending used in defense that is not truly for the security of our nation must be reduced. A complete evaluation of military spending must be a priority if any kind of reduction or increase in budget can be debated.

    Wing, Nick. “Fact Of The Day #8: U.S. Defense Spending Dwarfs Rest Of The World.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 06 Aug. 2012. Web. 06 Oct. 2012. .

    “Military Budget of the United States.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 10 May 2012. Web. 07 Oct. 2012. .

  27. Education is fundamental to the growth of our economy and nation. It is essential, especially at younger ages, to create a foundation of basic education and learning so that our youth may be adequately equipped to make future personal learning decisions. By providing education as a public good from kindergarten to 12th grade, the government can encourage the progression of learning in its youth and ensure that the rate of consumption of this good is higher than it would be if education were a private good. If general education were a private good that students had to pay full cost for, “people would under-invest in their own education . . . , because they would not choose to foot the bill for the benefits shared by all member of the society.” Education as a private good would lack incentive for students to pay high costs and would minimize benefits. However, keeping higher forms of education from being wholly defined as a public good keeps education from become devalued by students. The real benefit of learning cannot be gained unless some sacrifice is made by the consumer and an appreciation of the value of education is created.

    Baum, Sandy and Michael McPherson. “Is Education a Public Good or a Private Good?” The Chronicle of Higher Education. The Chronicle, 18 Jan. 2011. Web. 8 Oct. 2012.

  28. It is impossible for the government to have absolutely no regulation in our society today. With that being said I don’t believe it is a question of having regulation or not, but instead how limited their power of regulation should be. According to James F. Davis from Accuracy in Media, “governments should do only those things that cannot be done more efficiently by the private sector”. I completely agree with this statement. The government was created to provide things for the public that they could not create for themselves. For example in the Preamble it states that the government is responsible for providing for the common defense. Not only would it be costly for the states to provide their own defense, but it would also be incredibly ineffective. Instead of one unified front, there would be fifty different states, all with different capabilities and resources, trying to achieve the same goal: protecting each other. In this situation government regulation and interference is entirely necessary, for the state governments would be unable to effectively provide defense.

    Although government regulation benefits the well being of American citizens in instances such as the one with defense, it can also work against citizens and create more costs than necessary. One of the most obvious cases of too much government regulation can be seen in our medical system. Government regulation has dramatically increased the medical costs in the United States. For example, Richard D. Jones was prescribed a brace for his bad back and a retail cost of $132.00; however, Medicare received a claim for $1,201.00, in which they approved $900.59 of it. At the end of the day Mr. Jones’ insurance company paid 84% more for the brace than it was actually worth, all because of the endless amount of government regulation and mandates.

    In moderation government regulation can do wonders for the American economy and its consumers; however they key word is moderation. When regulation becomes to heavy prices skyrocket and competition is destroyed. “Red tape” (aka government regulation) is preventing many entrepreneurs from starting their businesses because it is driving up the costs to do so. Without small businesses there is less of a pool that consumers can buy from, meaning competition slowly starts to dwindle down to one or two huge companies that are able to afford the time and money needed to tackle all of the government regulations they are met with.

    Davis, James F. “Too Much Government, or Too Little?” Accuracy In Media. N.p., 10 Aug. 2010. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

  29. Education in America is an aspect of our government that definitely needs more attention. The last thing we want to do is promote private funding of education with the dropout crisis that we are currently experiencing. As of 2012, according to the Washington Post, the graduation rate in the United States is merely 75.5%, still a whiles way from the 90% national goal (Layton, 2012). Private funding of education would simply provide the opportunity for kids to skip out on schooling and would pose a problem for those who cannot afford high quality education. I completely agree with Riley Green’s earlier comment about spending more on higher quality teachers and textbooks rather than state of the art school supplies. Although modernization is necessary, items such as electronic white boards and laptops for all students is simply a waste of good tax money. Focusing on the curriculum and teaching kids real world life solving problems is a more practical approach and should be the focus of our government.

    Layton, L. (2012, March 18). washingtonpost.com. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/high-school-graduation-rate-rises-in-us/2012/03/16/gIQAxZ9rLS_story.html

  30. Both Ms.Warren/Presdient Obama and Dr. Roberts make valid points. I tend to agree more with Ms.Warren and President Obama. Public goods are very important to the economy and help it grow. I agree with Obama when he states all of the success earned by someone is partially credited to other people helping them along the way. Dr. Roberts makes a substantial point in stating the public education system is really bad but, I don’t necessarily agree with the government refunding citizens for the bad public education. Let’s say the government refunds everyone for bad public education that would mess up our whole money system and economy. Public education should be aided and subsidized by the government. They should at least help with public education up until high school since that is more of the mandatory education. The Wall Street Journal stated, “Mr. Obama said that education reform isn’t enough, though, and must be accompanied by adequate public spending. On the campaign trail, he often mentions education as one of the areas where the nation should spend more to build for the future.”Investing and improving the education in America will help improve the knowledge of younger generations which in the end will improve our country and the economy in the future.

    Meckler, Laura. “Romney, Obama Clash Over Education.” Wall Street Journal, 25 Sept. 2012. Web. 8 Oct. 2012. .

  31. Saying that we should cut spending on national defense is a big joke. Sure national security takes up a huge chunk of that national budget but it is a necessity. Without government spending going towards the military, national defense would go into the hands of the private sector. There is no way that the private sector could come up with the funds or the resources needed to defend our country. Taxpayers should not complain about their money going towards national defense because it is what protects them and without it, they would have no protection against outside threats. I can see what people say about the amount of money that goes towards the building of the mass amounts of nuclear weapons that we have being a little too much but in this age, those are necessities to maintain our title as the world leader in power. According to about.com’s article How much money should be spent on national security? The amount of money from $600 million after 911, to $700 million in the war on terror to $893 million in 2012 and does not show any signs of going down in the future. With new technology and new threats come increased amount of money that needs to go towards national security but these price increases are necessary for the sake of protecting Americans.

  32. In terms of regulations, the government needs to implement full control over the standards and fire codes that go into businesses and buildings. If we were to allow the free market to decide their own fire codes, I project many people would likely get sick from unsanitary health conditions or get injured or even die from structural malfunctions. Many business owners would shift their focus away from expensive regulations and maintenance if there weren’t any standards to abide by. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries Charts, fires and explosions accounted for 3% of workplace fatalities in 2007 (osha.gov, 2008). Considering that this statistic is with government regulation, imagine the fatality rate of workers without it.
    By maintaining control over building regulations, the government sets a “golden standard” for safety and accessibility. This ensures that in the case of an emergency, any facility will have all precautions met and be ready to handle the situation. In a sense, this branches out to the topic of public safety and protection. The government should provide that protection and ensure the safety of the citizens as much as possible.

    Sources:
    “Safety and Health Topics | Fire Safety.” Safety and Health Topics | Fire Safety. United States Department of Labor, 2008. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

  33. I do agree with what President Obama and Ms. Warren were mentioning in their quoted excerpts. The idea of teamwork to me is the building blocks to every successful outcome. Whether one may actually see and appreciate all the efforts done to achieve a certain goal, it still occurs. Although America is relatively high on its percentages of education levels, there is still definitely room for much improvement. Seventy percent of eight graders can’t read proficiently. Sixty-five percent of convicts were high school dropouts. Forty-four percent of dropouts are jobless. Lack of education is a very important issue and ones learning ability can really change and impact whether they will later be successful in their future or not. The snowball effect of no education could lead to crime or to no graduates with college becoming less and less popular. That then will become an issue of no educated employers with the job market decreasing and no knew inventions and ideas into the new world.
    Citation:
    Moretti, E. “Statistics on American K-12 Public Education.”
    Statistics on American K-12 Public Education-The Broad Foundation
    . Broad Education, 2007. Web. 6 Oct 2012.
    .

  34. The government plays an essential role when deciding to provide a public good to its citizens. When deciding upon whether a project should be paid for by the government, the question which arises is whether the private sector can provide it more efficiently. In certain circumstances the government holds a comparative advantage over the private sector. When the government has the comparative advantage in a public good it is therefore more inclined to provide the service. Public sewage is an example where the government holds a comparative advantage and therefore provides the service. What the government should take into consideration before funding a project is whether it is justifiable in its cause. In certain cases the private sector may be able to produce a higher quality public good at a lower cost. “As a monopoly, public providers don’t have strong incentives to improve their value of services” (Peter Nelson). With competition present in the private industry the incentive to provide a better service causes the private industry to produce a better product than the government.
    With scarcity present the government should consider whether the construction of a public good will be beneficial. The government should only consider providing public goods when the cause is justifiable and in the long run not become a waste of resources. In some cases the “government creates a problem of “forced riders” by compelling persons to support projects they do not desire” (Cowen). This was the case in Alaska where a 400 million dollar bridge was constructed for a community of fifty people. The opportunity cost on building the bridge ended with a waste of resources and labor. The revenue from taxes is what pays for the public goods and “every dollar spent on roads, bridges, and stadiums is a dollar that has to be taxed from somewhere” (David Seymour). With people’s tax dollars being used to fund the projects the willingness to pay for the consumers should exceed the price of the project. The government should only intervene in building a public good when having a comparative advantage. This will help reduce the resources lost and in turn the government should support private markets when they offer better alternatives.
    Works Cited:
    Cowen, Tyler. “Public Goods and Externalities.” by Tyler Cowen: The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Oct. 2012.
    Nelson, Peter. “If the Private Sector Can Do It, Should the Government Get out of It? (Debate – 6/13-6/16).” N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Oct. 2012.
    Seymour, David. “Author Archives: David Seymour.” David Seymour. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012.

  35. Dr. Robert’s statement, “The government’s provision of public education is so bad that people should ask for refunds from the government,” is a strong way to say the government is doing a terrible job with providing public education. In my opinion, people asking for refunds from the government for public education is a bit of an overreaction, but something does need to be done. In order for a country to thrive, the citizens need to have some form of public education. It is the government’s job to provide a form of public education that is equal around the country, at least until the high school level. After high school I think the government’s only role in college level learning would be to regulate universities’ tuition rates to ensure they were fair for college students.

  36. The government should play a major role in public education. By the government playing a role in the public school system, it is investing in itself with allowing future workers to gain the skills necessary to eventually run the government. The government should focus its funds more on the secondary schooling and post secondary schooling; this is where the most of the skills ready for entering the workforce should come from. “Students are graduating from both high school and college unprepared for the world of work” (Wagner). Less than a quarter of students of employed from graduating after four years of college have “excellent” general knowledge and applied set of skills (Wagner).

    In Finland, the schools are very successful. They saw public education as their best option to economic recovery (Hancock). These students were successful, 93% of Finns graduated from n academic or vocational high school, that is 17.5 more points than the U.S. (Hancock). The U.S. could follow in Finland’s steps and see public education as a step to recovery and fund it. It would not happen right away, but over time like in Finland.

    The government should have more control over the public school system, it could create tighter standards and allow for students to be in classrooms and environments made for the student’s needs. This could allow for the students to succeed and give back to the government. This would increase government spending, but with more able skilled workers in the workforce then the government could reap the benefits of the investments it made and even gain back what it invested.

    Work Cited

    Hancock, LynNell. Why Are Finland Schools Successful? September 2011. Smithosian Magazine. 8 October 2012 .

    Wagner, Tony. The Global Achievement Gap. 2008. 8 October 2012 .

  37. Currently highway spending is carried out by the state governments, and according to Ashley Langer, of U.C. Berkley, the traffic congestion in highly populated areas cause about 3.5 billion hours of delays by 2000, a number that increases each year. When the Government considers increasing spending on roads and bridges it has to consider the population to which it is catering. If a new road is built in Northern Virginia in an area where a new road is truly needed and would decrease the level of traffic, the public would be more willing to support it and pay increased taxes to help with the increased government spending. If the government wants to increase spending on roads and bridges for the public, it has to focus on overcrowded areas in order to achieve the effectiveness and approval it is seeking, otherwise it should not continue to provide these services.

    The only reason the government should stop providing roads and bridges to the public is when there is no alternative. If the government cannot afford to build a new bridge or road that the public deems necessary, then the private sector should take the opportunity to provide this service. There are, however, some drawbacks to the private sector providing the roads and bridges that the public desires. Despite the benefits to communities, the road companies were often hamstrung by regulations on toll rates and toll collection (Roth, Federal Highway Funding). This means that it was difficult for the companies to keep find themselves organized and figuring out how to deal with government regulations. If the government is going to place regulations that hinder the development of private roads, then the government should be the sector that provides them. It is also extremely likely that in today’s current economic situation, people would avoid going on private roads that charge tolls to pass, which increases the likelihood that the private company would go out of business.

    Bibliography:
    Langer, Ashley. “THE EFFECT OF GOVERNMENT HIGHWAY SPENDINGON ROAD USERS’ CONGESTION COSTS.” FHWA. U.C. Berkley, Oct. 2004. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

    Roth, Gabriel. “Federal Highway Funding | Downsizing the Federal Government.” Federal Highway Funding | Downsizing the Federal Government. CATO Institute, June 2010. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

  38. The government should absolutely play a role in providing public education. However, the federal government should have less control over the education system. Sure, Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 made it possible for poorer districts to have increased funding, but it also made the US education system based on standardized tests that can not possibly accurately show a child’s performance in school. Many school districts were also taken over by the government and jobs were lost. The dramatic increase of the federal government’s role seemed to hurt our country’s education system more than help. So, maybe the state and local levels should be held more accountable for elementary, middle, and high school levels. However, it is still necessary that we keep a public education system so that every child is guaranteed an equal opportunity to go to school. Many of the country’s population would not be able to afford adequate schooling or be as interested in it if it was not forced upon us legally. On the other hand, the government would have to keep the amount of school districts up because smaller class sizes allow for better instruction. This may cost more money, but should be justified by better qualifications upon graduation.

    “The New Rules.” PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2012. .

  39. The government should be highly involved in educating its citizens. I believe more funding should be allocated towards education. It’s ridiculous how small of a percentage our governments funding is on education compared to other things. Knowledge is the key to our countries future and therefore there needs to be higher standards in the public school system. We are actually far behind other countries when comparing and math and sciences. This is sad due to the fact America is highly developed country. The government should want to educate American citizens as much as possible so it makes its own people in a higher demand. The more abilities a person has the better chance they will be able to find a job and help benefit the American economy. Increasing our intelligence would also hopefully stimulate more people to be able to go out and actually find a decent job. The poorer our education system gets, the poorer people are going to become. And eventually if the education system gets screwed up more than it already is even more people are going to depend on the government to take care of them. The more education a person receives the better chance that person will take the burden off the government. Therefore it is crucial for the government to allocate more money towards education.

    Who Pays for Education?
    http://www.ushistory.org/gov/12c.asp

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *