CHAMPS Charter High School of the Arts - Multimedia and Performing

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Assignments

Economics

Instructor
Bret Polish
Term
2017-2018 School Year
Department
Independent Study
Description

Welcome to Economics with Mr. Polish! Our class will meet every Friday from 1:19 – 2:19 pm and your attendance there is required. Because we only meet one day a week, it is important that you maintain communication with me by e-mail if you are having any issues with me, school, or the work. My e-mail is bpolish@champscharter.org and I check it every day so expect me to get back to you no more than 24 hours after you have messaged me.

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Past Assignments

Due:

Economics Final Project:  MY LIFE IN 2028

As a final project for this class, you will be given the chance to plan out the next 10 years of your life. Your life will drastically change over the next 10 years if you move out of the house, go to college, find a job and/or start a family.

With this final project, you will be able to plan out your dream life and figure out what you may need to do in order to achieve those dreams over the next ten years.

You will be creating a scrapbook.  Scrapbooks are visually pleasing and graphically organized, so put some thought into your project.  The instructions are included in the attached document.

Due:

Globalization:  The Corporation HW

From the book The Value of Nothing by Raj Patel

First, read over the packet, highlight the main points from each paragraph and define the following 17 words:  dissembling, DSM-IV, litigious, flouting, welching, pang, suppressed, capital equipment, externalities, soil degradation, clear cut forest, exorbitant, subsidies, eutrophication, desertification, commodities, and outsource.

Then, answer the following questions in two full sentences per question.  Be sure to support your answers with evidence from the reading.

  1. What is the chief motivation of corporations?  What did the movie The Corporation discover when analyzing corporations by the DSM-IV?
  2. What did Monsanto do to Anniston, Alabama? What was the company’s response to getting caught?
  3. How do companies keep profits high? Explain how McDonald’s uses externalities to its benefit.
  4. What is the carbon footprint of all the Big Macs sold in a year? What other social costs does McDonald’s cause?
  5. How does the government subsidize McDonald’s? How do American taxpayers subsidize McDonald’s?
  6. What is the public health cost of fast food? What are the costs of agricultural use of antibiotics and pesticides?
  7. If all externalities are considered, how much should a McDonald’s hamburger cost? What is the point of the different studies of the true costs of agriculture?
  8. What is the problem with China’s agriculture? Explain at least two of the problems created by this.
  9. What is the consequence of the low cost of wheat and other commodities? What is China doing because of this?
  10. What is the difference in value between conventional and organic agriculture? What is the problem with the free market when it comes to organic agriculture?
  11. What does the author mean when he says that the “systematic distortion in valuation is a direct consequence of profit drive markets”? What does the author have to say about the people who work for or run corporations?
  12. What happens to companies that respect the environment? What does the author argue that prices should reflect?
  13. What kinds of countries have to pay the biggest price for climate change and other environmental problems? How much money do third world countries owe rich countries?

Due:

Globalization Activity Questions
Answer the questions on the last page of the attached handout in at least two complete sentences per question.

Due:

In 2010, President Barack Obama signed into law the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act to directly deal with some of the causes of the 2008 subprime mortgage crisis and prevent another recession. One of Donald Trump’s major campaign promises was to dismantle this law and, in March 2018, the Republican Congress started to do this. At the heart of this debate is the question of whether or not the government should get involved in regulating banks to prevent another economic recession. Using entirely economic sources, your job is to take a position explaining whether banking regulation is good or bad for the economy.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CiOuqGPp7Yc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xqQNbHrOTo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBAAlHBB-wY

In these debates, you will be broken up into three groups: pro-Dodd Frank, anti-Dodd Frank, and Expand Dodd Frank (Break up the Big Banks). However, to adequately defend your group, you must know about the strengths and weaknesses of all three sides.

Due:

Origins of the Subprime Crisis HW

First, read over the packet and define all 35 bold words.

Then, re-read the packet and answer the following questions in two full sentences per question.  Be sure to support your answers with evidence from the reading.

Part 1:  Introduction

  1. What was causing “chaos” in the housing and stock markets in 2007?   What was George W. Bush’s solution and what was the problem with his solution?

Part 2:  What is Sub-Prime Lending?

  1. How did borrowers make money off of sub-prime lending?  Why was it so easy for sub-prime lenders to take advantage of poor people?
  2. What did sub-prime lenders do with the loans they made? What made this scheme work?
  3. What are two of the consequences when there are a lot of foreclosures in a neighborhood?

Part 3:  Who Benefited and Who Got Hurt?

  1. How did mortgage brokers make money? How did Wall street investment firms make money off of sub-prime mortgages?
  2. What does it mean when the author says that the “bottom (fell) out of the sub-prime market”? What did this cause?
  3. Were major CEO’s hurt by the crash of the sub-prime market? Who was hardest hit by this crisis and why?
  4. Why did so many families lose their homes during this crisis? How did predatory lenders take advantage of many people?  Explain at least two ways they did this.
  5. Why were so many people easily victimized by unscrupulous lenders? How did some buyers try to take advantage of the subprime market?

Part 4:  Where do We Go from Here?

  1. What kinds of companies does the author believe the government needs to distinguish between? What kinds of people does the author believe the government needs to distinguish between? 
  2. What does the author believe were the good parts of the Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act of 2007? What ended up happening to this bill?
  3. What is the bolder action that the author believes Congress needs to take (and has not taken)? Explain at least two of the author’s recommendation?
  4. What example does the author give to prove that non-profit lenders are better than for-profit lenders? Why is this a successful example?

Part 5:  And it all Started with Deregulation

  1. Why did the banking system work between WWII and the 1970s?  What did the government require during this period?
  2. What did community groups discover about the government and major home lenders in the 1970s? What did the government do because of this?
  3. How did the government de-regulate the banking industry in the 1980s? What happened in the savings and loan industry because of this?
  4. What do free market ideologists believe about the government? What did Federal Reserve Board member Edward Gramlich warn about because of this?
  5. Who created the Bush administration’s mortgage plan? Why do you think the author brings this up at the end of the article?

 

Due:

The Stock Project
Please read the attached document and follow the instructions.

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Print and fill out the attached “Corporations, Mergers, and Multinationals” outline using the Economics textbook.

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Minimum Wage Debate Project

A minimum wage directly interferes with the forces of supply and demand in the labor market. Using entirely economic sources, your job is to take a position explaining whether a minimum wage is good or bad for the economy.

In these debates, you will be broken up into three groups:  pro-gradually raise the minimum wage, pro living wage ($15 an hour), and anti-minimum wage.  However, to adequately defend your group, you must know about the strengths and weaknesses of all three sides.

Due:

Print and fill out the attached “Labor and Wages” outline using the Economics textbook.

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Print and fill out the attached “Understanding Supply” and “Combining Supply and Demand” outlines using the Economics textbook.
 

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Print and fill out the attached “Understanding Demand” and “Elasticity of Demand”    outlines using the Economics textbook.

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Health Care Systems Debates Project

 The last time that the World Health Organization ranked the world’s different health care systems was 16 years ago. The United States ranked 37th, just ahead of Slovenia and Cuba, two countries that have a lot less money than the U.S. What kind of health care system should the U.S have? Though Republicans have been trying to get rid of it since 2010, they have only succeeded in ending the individual mandates of the Affordable Care Act (popularly known as Obamacare). Is Obamacare worth fighting for or should we try to set up a completely different kind of system?

 In these debates, you will be broken up into three groups to represent different three kinds of health care systems: single payer, the Affordable Care Act, and private insurance (also known as the Republican plan: the American Health Care Act). However, to adequately defend your group, you must know about the strengths and weaknesses of all three systems.

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Print and fill out the attached “Modern Economies” outline using the Economics textbook.
 

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Print and fill out the attached “Centrally Planned Economies” outline using the Economics textbook.
 

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Students will take a test on the vocabulary words from the attached document.  Use the textbook and your notes in order to find the proper definitions.

 

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Create flash cards for each of the vocabulary words from the attached document.  Use the textbook and your notes in order to find the proper definitions.

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Print and fill out the attached “Answering the Three Economic Questions” and “The Free Market”  outlines using the Economics textbook.
 

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In class, students will create mini-posters explaining their part of the definition of capitalism (an economic system based on private ownership of/the means of productions and resources/that are operated for the profit of the owners/under predominantly competitive conditions)

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Print and fill out the attached “Scarcity and the Factors of Production” and “Opportunity Cost”  outlines using the Economics textbook.
 

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In class, students will create mini-posters explaining their part of the definition of economics (A Social science concerned with/ the way society chooses to employ its limited resources/ to produce goods and services/ for present and future consumption)