Krugman - Erroneous - But I Repeat Myself

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Posted on : 3/01/2011 05:12:00 PM | By : Dann | In : , ,

In a recent column, Paul Krugman, the NYTimes' Nobel Laureate columnist, attempts to make the point that less government is a bad thing.  To illustrate his point, he suggests that Texas is in deep trouble as indicated by high school drop out rates and child poverty rates.

Mr. Krugman apparently lacks the nuance needed to evaluate exactly by Texas has a problem with childhood poverty as he neglects to discuss any factors beyond government spending...such as a porous border and a flood of illegal aliens...that might contribute to childhood poverty.

However, it is true that childhood poverty is a problem in Texas.

Trouble arises when one takes a closer look at the high school drop out data.  Bryan Preston of the PJ Tattler links to a couple of credible data sources to make the point that at least on the subject of high school drop outs, Texas isn't exactly in the worst of conditions.  Mr. Preston is careful to point out that the data is from adjacent years, so the comparison isn't perfect.

However, Mr. Krugman's argument is significantly undermined when you look at actual drop out rates and state spending per pupil.