New post at Policy Shop. Excerpt:
The lead analogy is a good one for purposes of policy construction. In response to learning that lead was messing up kids brains, we sought to eliminate exposure to it, e.g. by banning leaded gasoline, by banning lead paint, and by undertaking lead remediation projects. But we don’t do that for poverty, not really. Neither party is out there saying we need to eliminate poverty exposure. Instead, we’ve decided to keep in place the economic institutions that cause poverty to exist, and frantically construct policies that mop up part of the disaster that impoverishment then causes. It would be as if, instead of eliminating exposure to lead, we just kept poisoning kids with it, and created a bunch of Lead Charter Schools that were specifically targeted for the needs of lead-poisoned students.