Paul Krugman’s Cannibalize the Future makes several points related to the local issue of Reasons to Vote for a School Tax Increase and also related to material I’ve posted on Anthropology and Government Planning.
The really common theme here is how ideas of responsibility, making the “hard choices for the future,” and affordability should often be turned around. The harder and more responsible decision may actually be to spend toward the future–because in some ways we cannot afford not to.
As Krugman poignantly points out, “America used to be a country that thought big about the future. Major public projects, from the Erie Canal to the interstate highway system, used to be a well-understood component of our national greatness.”
The same goes when we make a plan for our schools: we need to think locally, but we also need to think big.