1985 was better overall
2015 is better overall
The 80's seem like a badass time, to me. From an outsider's perspective. Just seemed like an era where men were men, people had more balls.
The 90's too, to a lesser extent.
The 70's seemed like a time of weakness.
Today, everyone is a pansy. Everyone is so politically correct. Just straight up kicking ass is no longer done. Seems like you need to apologize for being good at something these days.
You seem to be confusing social stratification with meritocracy. I'm all for meritocracy, but not for having a system where it's harder (than it already is) for those at the bottom to climb.
Education should always be about the students, not the wealth of the families that they come from.
Being able to send your kids to a good private school is an incentive for people to work harder and be productive. I'm not in favor of removing that incentive. I'm in favor of pouring gasoline on it and ratcheting up the flames. We need more productivity, and less sucking at the government tit.