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Assignments Economics

Econ Reading: Defriending Facebook

A light read on Facebook – and back to the idea of choices, costs, and benefits. Read, reflect, and leave your comments below.

Students – please read the short article, then add your thoughts as a comment. There are no specific questions for this reading, rather I’d like for you to reflect on the information, and comment effectively upon said material. As usual, your answer needs to be substantial and well formulated in order to qualify for credit. The reading, and your comments, are due before class on Thursday, February 17th, 2011.

Reading:

Defriending Facebook

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History

This Day In History

  • February 15, 1898: The Maine explodes

    A massive explosion of unknown origin sinks the battleship USS Maine in Cuba’s Havana harbor, killing 260 of the fewer than 400 American crew members aboard.

    One of the first American battleships, the Maine weighed more than 6,000 tons and was built at a cost of more than $2 million. Ostensibly on a friendly visit, the Maine had been sent to Cuba to protect the interests of Americans there after a rebellion against Spanish rule broke out in Havana in January.

    An official U.S. Naval Court of Inquiry ruled in March that the ship was blown up by a mine, without directly placing the blame on Spain. Much of Congress and a majority of the American public expressed little doubt that Spain was responsible and called for a declaration of war.

    Subsequent diplomatic failures to resolve the Maine matter, coupled with United States indignation over Spain’s brutal suppression of the Cuban rebellion and continued losses to American investment, led to the outbreak of the Spanish-American War in April 1898.

    Within three months, the United States had decisively defeated Spanish forces on land and sea, and in August an armistice halted the fighting. On December 12, 1898, the Treaty of Paris was signed between the United States and Spain, officially ending the Spanish-American War and granting the United States its first overseas empire with the ceding of such former Spanish possessions as Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines.

    In 1976, a team of American naval investigators concluded that the Maine explosion was likely caused by a fire that ignited its ammunition stocks, not by a Spanish mine or act of sabotage.

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Economics News

Econ Test Chp 2 Results

Students took the chapter 2 test the other day, and here are the results:

1 student scored 100%

Class Average: 78%

Nice work! Keep the average above 75%, and everyone’s happy! Well, almost…

You know what they say – half of the doctors in Med school scored below average on their exams… Question is, which doctor do you go to?

Categories
Assignments History

USHIST: Chapter 13 Materials

Chapter 13 materials have been posted, so please make sure you head over to the chapter resources pages to download whatever you may need. You’ll get the homework sections in class today (the yellow sheets), and the first one is due tomorrow, February 15th. Also, check the class calendar for the next few weeks regarding assignments, etc.

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History News

Cheating on Study Island

So, apparently some students spend some time figuring out how to cheat on Study Island, the preparation software we use to get ready for the Ohio Graduation Tests in March. Here’s my response to that, as lifted from some chat room on the net a few years ago…

Let me get this straight, you want to *cheat* a system designed to prep you for a state learning assessment exam? Whatever for? Are you training yourself to cheat on the assessment exam itself? That seems to me to be the wrong way to go about it since the actual assessment exam won’t allow you to hack HTML code to cheat it. So while you will learn to cheat StudyIsland, you won’t learn how to cheat your assessment exam. Similarly, knowing the answers to practice exam questions won’t help you on your state exam unless they are the exact same questions and you are memorizing all of them.

Cheating sucks. At the end of the day, it’s easier to learn the frickin’ material.

Now, I’m okay with code, and looking at the “cheat”, it seems you spend and enormous amount of time getting the right answers, as opposed to actually doing the work… It’s all about priorities, I guess.

Categories
History

This Day In History

  • February 14, 0278: St. Valentine beheaded

    On February 14 around the year 278 A.D., Valentine, a holy priest in Rome in the days of Emperor Claudius II, was executed.

    Under the rule of Claudius the Cruel, Rome was involved in many unpopular and bloody campaigns. The emperor had to maintain a strong army, but was having a difficult time getting soldiers to join his military leagues. Claudius believed that Roman men were unwilling to join the army because of their strong attachment to their wives and families.

    To get rid of the problem, Claudius banned all marriages and engagements in Rome. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret.

    When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death. Valentine was arrested and dragged before the Prefect of Rome, who condemned him to be beaten to death with clubs and to have his head cut off. The sentence was carried out on February 14, on or about the year 270.

    Legend also has it that while in jail, St. Valentine left a farewell note for the jailer’s daughter, who had become his friend, and signed it “From Your Valentine.”

    For his great service, Valentine was named a saint after his death.

    In truth, the exact origins and identity of St. Valentine are unclear. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, “At least three different Saint Valentines, all of them martyrs, are mentioned in the early martyrologies under the date of 14 February.” One was a priest in Rome, the second one was a bishop of Interamna (now Terni, Italy) and the third St. Valentine was a martyr in the Roman province of Africa.

    Legends vary on how the martyr’s name became connected with romance. The date of his death may have become mingled with the Feast of Lupercalia, a pagan festival of love. On these occasions, the names of young women were placed in a box, from which they were drawn by the men as chance directed. In 496 AD, Pope Gelasius decided to put an end to the Feast of Lupercalia, and he declared that February 14 be celebrated as St Valentine’s Day.

    Gradually, February 14 became a date for exchanging love messages, poems and simple gifts such as flowers.

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Assignments Economics

Econ Reading: State of the States

This week we’re discussing the role of government in the economy, as we explore the American Free Enterprise system.

But, what is the state of our economy, and more specifically, what is the state of the states? This reading (very short) explores just how the states are doing in terms of economics, and how they’re feeling during the recent economic troubles.

Students – please read the briefing, then add your thoughts as a comment. There are no specific questions for this reading, rather I’d like for you to reflect on the information, and comment effectively upon said material. As usual, your answer needs to be substantial and well formulated in order to qualify for credit. The reading, and your comments, are due before class on Tuesday, February 15th, 2011.

Reading:

Briefing – State of the States

Categories
History

This Day In History

  • February 13, 1633: Galileo in Rome for Inquisition

    On this day in 1633, Italian philosopher, astronomer and mathematician Galileo Galilei arrives in Rome to face charges of heresy for advocating Copernican theory, which holds that the Earth revolves around the Sun. Galileo officially faced the Roman Inquisition in April of that same year and agreed to plead guilty in exchange for a lighter sentence. Put under house arrest indefinitely by Pope Urban VIII, Galileo spent the rest of his days at his villa in Arcetri, near Florence, before dying on January 8, 1642.

    Galileo, the son of a musician, was born February 15, 1564, in Pisa, Italy. He entered the University of Pisa planning to study medicine, but shifted his focus to philosophy and mathematics. In 1589, he became a professor at Pisa for several years, during which time he demonstrated that the speed of a falling object is not proportional to its weight, as Aristotle had believed. According to some reports, Galileo conducted his research by dropping objects of different weights from the Leaning Tower of Pisa. From 1592 to 1630, Galileo was a math professor at the University of Padua, where he developed a telescope that enabled him to observe lunar mountains and craters, the four largest satellites of Jupiter and the phases of Jupiter. He also discovered that the Milky Way was made up of stars. Following the publication of his research in 1610, Galileo gained acclaim and was appointed court mathematician at Florence.

    Galileo’s research led him to become an advocate of the work of the Polish astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1573). However, the Copernican theory of a sun-centered solar system conflicted with the teachings of the powerful Roman Catholic Church, which essentially ruled Italy at the time. Church teachings contended that Earth, not the sun, was at the center of the universe. In 1633, Galileo was brought before the Roman Inquisition, a judicial system established by the papacy in 1542 to regulate church doctrine. This included the banning of books that conflicted with church teachings. The Roman Inquisition had its roots in the Inquisition of the Middle Ages, the purpose of which was to seek out and prosecute heretics, considered enemies of the state.

    Today, Galileo is recognized for making important contributions to the study of motion and astronomy. His work influenced later scientists such as the English mathematician and physicist Sir Isaac Newton, who developed the law of universal gravitation. In 1992, the Vatican formally acknowledged its mistake in condemning Galileo.

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History

This Day In History

  • February 12, 2002: Milosevic goes on trial for war crimes

    On this day in 2002, former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic goes on trial at The Hague, Netherlands, on charges of genocide and war crimes in Bosnia, Croatia and Kosovo. Milosevic served as his own attorney for much of the prolonged trial, which ended without a verdict when the so-called “Butcher of the Balkans” was found dead at age 64 from an apparent heart attack in his prison cell on March 11, 2006.

    Yugoslavia, consisting of Croatia, Montenegro, Slovenia, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Macedonia, became a federal republic, headed by Communist leader Marshal Tito, on January 31, 1946. Tito died in May 1980 and Yugoslavia, along with communism, crumbled over the next decade.

    Milosevic, born August 20, 1941, joined the Communist Party at age 18; he became president of Serbia in 1989. On June 25, 1991, Croatia and Slovenia declared their independence from Yugoslavia and Milosevic sent tanks to the Slovenian border, sparking a brief war that ended in Slovenia’s secession. In Croatia, fighting broke out between Croats and ethnic Serbs and Serbia sent weapons and medical supplies to the Serbian rebels in Croatia. Croatian forces clashed with the Serb-led Yugoslav army troops and their Serb supporters. An estimated 10,000 people were killed and hundreds of Croatian towns were destroyed before a U.N. cease-fire was established in January 1992. In March, Bosnia-Herzegovina declared its independence, and Milosevic funded the subsequent Bosnian Serb rebellion, starting a war that killed an estimated 200,000 people, before a U.S.-brokered peace agreement was reached at Dayton, Ohio, in 1995.

    In Kosovo, a formerly autonomous province of Serbia, liberation forces clashed with Serbs and the Yugoslav army was sent in. Amidst reports that Milosevic had launched an ethnic cleansing campaign against Kosovo’s ethnic Albanians, NATO forces launched air strikes against Yugoslavia in 1999.

    Ineligible to run for a third term as Serbian president, Milosevic had made himself president of Yugoslavia in 1997. After losing the presidential election in September 2000, he refused to accept defeat until mass protests forced him to resign the following month.  He was charged with corruption and abuse of power and finally surrendered to Serbian authorities on April 1, 2001, after a 26-hour standoff. That June, he was extradited to the Netherlands and indicted by a United Nations war crimes tribunal. Milosevic died in his cell of a heart attack before his trial could be completed.

    In February 2003, Serbia and Montenegro became a commonwealth and officially dropped the name Yugoslavia. In June 2006, the two countries declared their independence from each other.

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History News

Study Island Report Week # 1

We’ve had our first day of Study Island – practicing and reviewing for the OGT.

So far, my students have spent a combined 55 hours, 45 minutes on Study Island! Wow!

To see the assignment, click here.