Railing about deficits gives the GOP a convenient excuse to hack away at the sorts of bogeymen they've been wanting to kill off for years. Public-employee salaries. And benefits. And bargaining rights.
The establishment of a "Summer of Service" rite for young Americans of all backgrounds could help them find a sense of purpose at a pivotal age, hone their civic engagement skills, and expose them to role models in the community.
[Sagawa's book] doesn't let government off the hook, but instead argues that there are some roles that volunteers and participants in national service programs can play more effectively than professionals.