When people point to a government success (don’t laugh) it usually comes with a call for more government. You might profitably think about the invocation of the “success” of deposit insurance (I disagree) being used to impose similar rules on the modern financial system.
However, when government fails I usually see these failures as a justification for more government. Look no further than your flailing public schools clamoring for more money right now.
What a fantastic gig the statists have going. Government success –> more government. Government failure –> more government. And gosh, you even hear folks arguing that stasis implies more government too (listen to any of the 2008 campaign speeches).
Again I offer my statist friends on the right and left, what would ever constitute support for a smaller government? I venture to say that you will not offer any such justification. That’s cool. But then let’s not try to be scientific when we are talking about the proper role of government.