In fact, I have an interesting comparison here, and I’m going to find it in one of these stacks, of just how long it took us to establish Germany, various aspects of the German society versus how quickly we’re doing it in Iraq. I’ll get to that here in just a second. But still, so we got maybe a grand total of $127 bill on Iraq. And the left demands to know every penny of it. The left is out there also demanding that this Medicare bill, $400 billion, new entitlement. Nobody is demanding an accounting, nobody is demanding to know when it’s going to end. Have you ever noticed that about an entitlement? Nobody ever asks when it’s going to end, nobody ever asks when will this program have worked? When will it have succeeded and we can stop it. You notice that was never a characteristic of any entitlement program, by definition, it’s supposed to be unending. It just extends out there to infinity. Never ends, and the initial price tag is never accurate, right? But nobody ever demands to know exactly where all the money is going. In fact, if you do, you’re said to be cold-hearted, cruel, insensitive, all of that.
Instead, we need to be spending money on education. Instead we are under-funding education, the education of our kids is getting second shift, we need to improve our spending and attention on education, they always say. How many of you have any idea what we spend on education in a single budget year? I’ll bet none of you do. I do because I’m host. It is my business to know this stuff, and I do know this stuff. This is amazing. And in fact it’s not even the central part, the central theme of this story. This story is actually oriented around the fact that we are number one in education spending, but not number one in scores. The United States spends more public and private money on education than other major countries, but its performance doesn’t measure up in areas ranging from haskrool graduation rates to test scores in math, reading, and science, according to a new report. There are countries, which don’t get the bang for the bucks. The U.S. is one of them, said Barry McGaw, education director of the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which produced the annual review of industrialized nations. The United States spent $10,240 per student from elementary school through college in the year 2000, according to the report. The average in other nations, $6,361 per student. This was studied over 25 other nations, and despite this, the U.S. finished in the middle of the pack in it’s 15-year-old’s performance on math reading and science in 2000 and it’s high school graduation rate was below the international average in 2001, figures highlighted, by the way, by the education secretary Rod Paige. The report was released Tuesday. It sets international benchmarks and identifies areas for improvement based on the education level. The report says the United States spends the most on higher education for every student and is a leading spender on primary and secondary education. The next time you hear that we are under-funded in education, I don’t care how you measure it, in real dollars, compared to other countries, or just compared to our past, it is a baseless assertion, a baseless claim.
Now, $10,240 per student is one way of looking at it. But there’s another way of looking at it, in relationship to all the other items I’ve given you, the war in Iraq, the $400 billion brand-new entitlement for Medicare, prescription drugs. Federal education spending has grown by $11 billion since President Bush took office. It includes spending beyond the first 12 grades, in fact, even increased money for elementary and secondary education does not cover the sweeping expenses that a new law has been passed on this requires. But what is the total dollar amount? What do you think the total dollar amount is, ladies and gentlemen, that we spend just as a wild guess?
Education expenditures rose to an estimated high of $745 billion in the 2001-2002 school year. Elementary and secondary schools spent about 61% of this total. College and universities accounted for the remaining 39%. Elementary and secondary schools and colleges and universities spent an estimated 7.4% of the gross domestic product in 2001-2002. $745 billion on education in the 2001-2002 year. We’re going to spend $127 billion in Iraq. We are going to spend $400 billion to start with on the new Medicare entitlement. We spend $300 billion a year on defense. The total budget is 2.2 trillion. 7 1/2% of it is education. And yet the Democrats continue to run around, and sadly, many of you do too, many of you become parrots, just running around, we’re not funding education properly. We need to spend more on education. The problem is we’re spending too much on it. We’re spending money on a bunch of people that have no impact in the classroom and what we are spending in the classroom is not being used properly because our kids are not educated at least on par with people around the world, which is just the way the liberals like it.
Another way to put this in perspective, I often uses these numbers, 1981, when Ronald Reagan assumed office, do you know what the total take to the treasury was in taxes? About $500 billion. In 1989, when Ronald Reagan left office after cutting taxes, do you know what the total take to the treasury was generated by tax revenue was? About $915 billion. In 1989, income taxes and other taxes generated $915 billion. 2001-2002, we are spending 745 billion on one item. Back when Reagan left office in 1989, the federal budget wasn’t even near a trillion. Today it’s 2.2 trillion. When Reagan left office the money take into the government was $915 billion. Today we spend $745 billion alone on education, over twice what we spend on defense. So the next time you hear somebody say we’re not spending money on education, that Bush has cut education, spending has gone up by $11 billion over budget requests because of the new tone and his desire to work with Democrats on this, as evidenced by his working with Ted Kennedy in the first year of his administration allowing basically Kennedy to write the education bill. It’s another reason I get fumed when I hear people say that we’re not spending enough on education. Democrats were authors of what we’re spending now. So it’s nothing more than an empty complaint, folks. By the way, the source for this is the National Center for Education statistics, an institute of education sciences from the U.S. Department of Education. So it’s U.S. government numbers, right here, $745 billion to educate our stupid, worthless kids who don’t know diddlysquat as a result. Evidence, the last call we had about this homeless problem in New York.