So, despite vast increases in spending, few would argue that students graduating from high school are better educated today than they were 50 years ago, and few believe that colleges have improved at the same rate that tuitions have gone up, if, indeed, they have improved at all in terms of education.

In this, interestingly, the Occupy movement may have unwittingly lent a hand to the Tea Party. Everyone who has followed the wall-to-wall news coverage has seen the sad stories of protesters who went deeply in debt for college degrees (admittedly, often degrees in things like Peace Studies, but nonetheless, still college degrees) and who now say they are unable to find work.

Faced with those stories, voters may understandably have concluded that more spending on colleges and schools was unlikely to do much to promote employment, regardless of what the political ads from the teachers’ unions and higher-education folks claimed.

If education is so great, after all, why are so many educated people unemployed and camping out in public parks?