Walter Williams makes a good case that the war on poverty was making things worse in 1985. This was a PBS documentary now available to all of us through the wonders of the Internet and Youtube. I recommend watching all 28 minutes.
Here’s Walter Williams home page to see more of his work. I recommend adding his weekly column to your normal reading rotation. You will learn a lot.
Thanks to Wally & Mike for — as usual — a good and productive discussion in the comments.