Paul Krugman posted this chart on his blog this morning, which I find fairly convincing in proving his argument–that inequality has little to do with education, and a lot to do with our economy being a race to the top, where only a few win, and all winners win big.
It seems to me that David Brooks, and his defenders in this debate, would merely quip that this is a picture of the effect of “blue inequality,” and the real problems are the U.S.’s “stagnant human capital, its stagnant social mobility and the disorganized social fabric for the bottom 50 percent.”
For some additional context, I have included this graph, which shows U.S. math scores slipping below the international average (source):
I agree with both Krugman and Brooks, and yes, that is possible. Far from being mutually exclusive, the two positions come together to form a basic explanation that I embrace: Read the rest of this entry →