Incremental collectivism is difficult to spot; it is sloth-like in its deliberation, but it does move and sometimes it helps to look back down the road to see how far it has come. Maybe that’s also the only way to see where it’s going.
Americans continue to think they live in a republic, but the republic is alive only when the Constitution is being faithfully read and adhered to, not when it is largely disregarded or interpreted into nothingness, especially where case law is considered “settled.”
What clause allows for an establishment of a Department of Education? Well, the “necessary and proper” clause, of course. Except that the necessary and proper clause only applies to those limited powers enumerated in the body of the Constitution. Same with the “Commerce Clause” they have used to implement all manner of collectivism.