In recent years, Americans have been increasingly concerned about a double challenge: revitalizing their economy and making their government work better. The economy has been performing poorly for nearly two decades, and the long-run outlook is discouraging. Moreover, the political system appears unable to take decisive actions, such as eliminating the federal deficit and improving education, that would brighten prospects for the economy.
In this book, Alice M. Rivlin examines the two challenges simultaneously and suggests that a key to meeting both of them may lie in restructuring the American federal system. She proposes a cleaner division of responsibilities between the state and federal governments in hopes of improving economic policy and revitalizing government at both levels.
Alice M. Rivlin is a senior fellow in the Brookings Economic