Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Current Event: April 8, 2011

Happy 4th Quarter in C&E. We have finally entered the Economics portion of the class. This week, I would like you to read a current event and post your summary/analysis on an article relating to economics. Feel free to focus on the United States or search internationally, but make sure that your article is on the money. :) Find something that interests you and share your knowledge with you classmates.


  1. Brinklee Bailey
    Current Event
    This week my current event is about a Republicans making four trillion dollar cut in the budget over the next ten years in order to remove some of the debt in our country. With this cut they are planning to reshape some of the more helpful programs that assisted American citizens. They are planning to monitor very closely the way the government is spending money. This plan is suppose to lower the debt and let the future generation not have any debt or else not have any debt. Republicans are planning to cut automatic spending in agriculture, treasury and justice department program, this will cut down the budget by nearly $33 billion. However the Democrats and Republicans do not agree on these cuts. Democrats think that more money should be spent on military and homeland security. They think that some of the cuts will affect necessary programs such as scholarships for students and scientific research, both of which have created jobs over the years.

    I think that this budget issue will take a really long time to resolve. In order for the U.S. to even get out of debt a little bit Democrats and Republicans will have to form together to make a productive budget. Until a compromise is made between the two sides the debt could build up even more and just get out of control. It’s strange to me that we let our country get this out of hand with spending and borrowing. I don’t think the debt will be resolved any time soon; it’s going to take a lot of strategic planning to turn this countries economy around.

  2. Yay, Brinklee. Way to post on a Monday. :)

  3. Shane Sater
    April 4, 2011

    BP, the oil company operating a drilling rig in the Gulf that exploded less than twelve months ago, killing ten workers and contaminating a region spanning several states with oil, has recently asked the government to allow it to start drilling in the same region again. BP proposes to agree to stricter safety standards in exchange for permission for further drilling. The corporation has been forced to compensate for economic losses related to the oil contamination, and has so far allocated 40 billion dollars for that purpose. However, they state, in order to pay these claims they must be able to drill further in the Gulf; without this they will not have enough capital to pay damages. The Obama administration faces a politically difficult decision in granting this drilling permit. Although they have committed to increasing drilling safety in the face of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, Obama has also promised to develop domestic oil resources to offset foreign oil purchases.
    I think that it is irresponsible for BP to threaten not to pay claims if it is not allowed further access to the Gulf. Even if the corporation agrees to higher safety standards, this comment raises serious questions for me about their responsibility. If BP is not able to pay for damages from this disaster, and uses that possibility to persuade the Obama administration to grant them drilling permits, these permits should not be granted: the corporation is obviously ill-suited for further drilling in the Gulf if they may not be able to pay damages for this disaster. If another such spill were to happen, BP might be unable to compensate for resulting losses, making them unsuitable for the risk of further operations in the Gulf.

    Kendall Simms 6th pd.

    With the start of the debate over future 2012 cuts, House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan will propose his 2012 budget resolution. Ryan’s budget will be an indicator of how Republicans hope to approach the levels of spending and revenue in 2012. They hope to do this by, “cutting spending, reforming entitlements, and growing the economy.” They believe that entitlements such as Medicare and Medicaid are one of the biggest causes of future debt. Ryan is the first Republican to come up with a solid budget resolution. Generally budget committees from both the House and the Senate submit budgetary proposals. Needless to say, representatives on both sides of the aisle are still debating the finalized budget resolution. The GOP is not expected to ask for any substantial reform Social Security, as that is still a controversial topic to say the least.

    The strategy of allocating some of the spending that goes towards Medicare and Medicaid into other areas is something that I can agree with. Especially since it has been proven that the continuance of current spending in those areas will negatively impact our future debt. Overall the GOP’s plan to drastically slash spending will definitely be modified in my opinion. It’s unrealistic to expect Democrats to just roll over when some of their priorities are to create jobs and to push healthcare reform. On top of that not even all of the Republicans are on board for the massive spending cuts that Ryan’s proposal calls for. Hopefully reps on both sides can come up with a productive plan that will leave us in less financial trouble next year.

    Sam Freedberg
    6th Period

    It's been a volatile first quarter, but that's not deterring Wall Street experts, who expect stocks to continue trending higher for the remainder of the year.
    Most market strategists are calling for the benchmark S&P 500 (SPX) index to rise an average of 4% over the next three quarters to end 2011 near 1,400, according to a survey. That would leave the market up about 11% for the year.Even a good number of the experts who were cautious with their initial forecasts back in December are more upbeat.
    "Stocks have withstood all of the external shocks much better than anticipated, including poor weather earlier this year, high oil prices with turmoil in the Middle East, the earthquake and nuclear crisis in Japan and debt problems in Europe," said National Securities chief market strategist Donald Selkin, who raised his forecast by 20 points to 1,370.

    The fact that stocks are going up is really good news for America. Despite all thats happened to us, we're not as in the hole as we may think. Experts are also predicting even more rises. Even with the earethquake in Japan and all the nuclear fears, people are predicitng that stocks will be up 11% by the end of 2011. Hopefully, America won't still be in trouble by the end of the year.


    This article talks about the impact bats has on our economy. Bats are one of natures natural pesticide, its said about a single colony of 150 brown bats can eat 1.3 million insects per year. They play a vital important role in agriculture, because without them the insects that usually consume crops would run amok. A new article in science also states the importance of bats in agriculture, one worth at least 3.7 billion. The population of bats have recently been decreasing due to white-nose syndrome, which is a white fungus that appears on the muzzle and other body parts of hibernating bats, WNS has killed at least one million bats, mostly in the northeast, and death rates among some affected winter colonies can be as high as 70%.
    I think that this problem should be dealt with soon, if this continues, then we’ll have more to worry about than just health care. Usually problems such as this goes unseen or unheard of until it escalates to a point that people are willing actually take notice. But if this problem goes on until its too late, we will have to turn to the idea of having a genetically enhanced crops. We may not entirely like bats but we do need them otherwise it’ll come back to bite us with a hefty some to fix the damages created.


    With more budget cuts looming on the horizon, many women fear that they will be impacted significantly more than men. Government voting on cutting funds for Planned Parenthood and other family planning programs has made some women apprehensive. In addition, the fields that our government is planning to defund are primarily in the sectors that women are more likely to work in, such as office and secretarial jobs, education, and health care. In New York alone, over 100 senior centers where women work and elderly women live will lose partial funding, and many public schools where 60% of the students are female will need to function on a lower budget. In a nation where equality is stressed, our future budget cuts disproportionally under represent women.

    I have never thought of budget cuts in relation to gender issues until now. It is true that our government plans to partially defund many public institutions and programs in which the majority of jobs are held by women. However, I think that most of these cuts are very logically thought out, and for the most part, very necessary. The fact that more women will be losing jobs than men will be is more of a symptom of our trying to recover our fallen economy than it is a backhanded gesture of gender discrimination. We talked about how the government is in a huge hole of debt, so I think our nation should adjust the national budget however it can to decrease the rate of our borrowing. In the situation we are in, even the important issue of gender discrimination should be second to the national budget.

    Jessica Gao
    6th Period

    This article is about President Obama failing to break a deadlock between the Democrats and Republicans which would threaten a partial shutdown in the government. Some lawmakers hoped that they could finalize a “long- delayed” budget to try and avoid government shutdown before the funding expires this Friday, April 8th. Obama said the there is no reason that Congress couldn’t come to a common deal within the next few days and that Americans wanted them to “act like grownups”. The deadlock in the budget will threaten hundreds of thousands of lost jobs. This is the worst recession since the 1930’s.

    This is sad to me that Congress cannot come to a common agreement on a solution to expand the budget to last until the end of still. To me it seems like Congress isn’t aware of how many people will be affected when the budget will fail. I just don’t understand how Democrats and Republicans can’t agree really on anything. I think that they need to put their personal opinions aside and agree on what is best for the country. Many Americans are unaware of the budget failing and I think they have the right to know where the economy is.

  9. The gap between the rich and poor is growing, but for a variety of reasons Americans aren't noticing the disparity in wealth. The richest 20% of people own 84% of the country's wealth, but most Americans believe the figure is 59%. They wish the percentage was even lower than that: 32%. One of the reasons for this misinformation is that the problem is often masked by credit cards, which allow people of "zero net worth" or even "negative net worth" to appear as though they have more money than they do. Another major factor is the unwillingness of the less privileged class to be in favor of taxes for the wealthy because of the hope that they or their children will one day be a part of that upper class group.

    I think this is an extremely interesting issue because I never would have guessed the disparity was so high. Coming from a fairly well off family in a very wealthy town, I don't think I've ever fully grasped just how privileged I am. There are a lot of people in this country with so much less, and I think they have a tendency to get overlooked, both by the rich and - perhaps even more often - by other people who have as little as they do. We need to figure out a way to fix this problem, otherwise the gap will just continue to widen.

    P.S. I like the new background =)


    Kate Boyd
    7th pd

    Due to the earthquake crisis in Japan, Toyota is being forced to temporarily shut down all of its US factories, due to lack of parts and materials. Because there are no resources available, their production is at a complete stnad-still. This will affect approximately 25,000 employees, but right now Toyota is saying they do not plan to fire anyone. There isn't a current estimate on when they will restart production, as they don't know when their suppliers in Japan are running again. Currently there's a shortage of cars made in Japan, and it's expected that consumers will have to pay more for them because they are in short supply.

    I think it's awful how much the crisis in Japan is affecting everyone. Not only are people suffering due to the destruction and radiation, there's also economic impacts as well. Obviously these don't compare to the destruction and loss of lives, but it's just adding to the tragedy. It's a good thing that there aren't plans to lay anyone off yet, but if production doesn't start again, some people will have to go.

  11. Julie Wulforst
    Period 6

    Many Americans, as well as non-Americans, are angry and frustrated with the government for getting involved with the corruption in Libya. The key question is, can we afford it? The simple answer is "yes." The defense budget is greater than $500 billion a year, so technically the Pentagon has the money to pay for Libya. The problem is, in past years the government hasn’t been very smart about military spending and has paid for wars through supplemental bills, or just let the money situations spin out of control. The costs have added up. To date, the total bill for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has reached $1.5 trillion.

    I think we really need to start focusing on domestic issues before we go overseas and spend money over there. In the above article, it states that "some researchers place the average bill as high as $1 million per troop per year in Afghanistan and more than $600,000 in Iraq." Although one million dollars may not seem like much in terms of the government’s budget, it all adds up. The cost of deploying 100,000 troops in Afghanistan this year will amount to over $100 billion. It's a shame that we put money towards foreign affairs when are domestic economy is extremely shaky. I know that JUST cutting back on defense spending won't cure our problems, but if we cut back on other things, such as Medicaid and Medicare spending as well, we may be able to make a big dent to lessen our national debt.


    House Republican Paul Ryan unveiled a shocking new budget that would drastically reduce the long term debt of the United States. Ryan’s budget proposal would cut $6 trillion in spending over the next decade. It is estimated that the budget proposal would decrease the federal debt held by the public to 48% by 2040 and to 10% by 2050. This would be a significant drop from the estimated 62% that the public is currently holding. The Congressional Budget Office projects that the debt would climb to 200% by 2040 if the budget continues on its current path. However, this budget proposal comes at a steep price. Medicare and Medicaid would both be overhauled. New restrictions would apply and some critics say that these new plans would cause greater financial risks for its beneficiaries. The funding for Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security would be reduced from 12% of the GDP to 6% by 2022. Other programs like food stamps and unemployment benefits would also receive heavy budget cuts.

    I think that Ryan’s proposal is excellent. It is true that the budget cuts proposed are drastic, but severe measures are needed. We cannot continue to spend money the way we do if all that it does is put us farther in debt. It does not benefit the country in any way. Excess spending just makes it harder for future generations to deal with. People are worried about the high deficit and how it will affect future generations. If the debt continues to grow, it will be almost four times as worse by 2040. I think that there will be long debates over what programs and benefits should be altered or abolished, but it is necessary in order to fix the growing problem of the national debt. Also, I doubt that Democrats will allow such drastic cuts to be made when their goals are healthcare and jobs. However at some point they have to realize that the budget cuts are crucial.

    Zach Visco
    April 6, 2011
    Period 6

  13. Jay Htut
    6th Period

    "800,000 federal workers in the dark"

    800,000 federal workers are in danger of temporarily losing their jobs. If a budget is not agreed by in Congress by Friday, then the government will not be able to function normally. The government will be forced to only keep "essential workers" who are vital to the running of our national government. The rest will be asked to stay home until a budget is agreed upon in Congress. Thus far, Congress has not yet released the list that will separate the essential workers from the non essential workers.

    This situation is very unfortunate. Hopefully, a budget will be agreed upon by Friday so that people will not have to worry about temporarily losing their jobs. However, if if not, hopefully the stalemate will not last long.


    Andrew Cohen
    7th period

    The United States debt is expected to hit the debt ceiling no later than May 16th. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said that the projections could change, but not in a way that would give Congress more time in which to act. If the debt limit is not increased before May 16th, the measures to prevent the United States from defaulting on its obligation would only buy us eight weeks. The United States has never reached its debt ceiling. If the debt ceiling were reached, the Treasury would prohibit United States borrowing. Unless lawmakers choose to raise the ceiling, borrowed money for this fiscal year will have to be obtained through spending cuts and tax increases. However, some lawmakers are threatening to vote against increasing the debt limit to show fiscal discipline.

    This is important because if the debt ceiling isn’t raised then the United States will have to implement major spending changes to prevent reaching the debt limit. Even if the debt ceiling is raised this is still a very important subject matter, and is the focus of our politicians as of late. We are trying to keep spending at reasonable levels without reaching the debt limit, which is a very tricky thing to do. This relates to what we are studying in class because it is about economics and how we can’t always get what we want. We can’t keep spending so much money, keep taxes low and continue to borrow money. I think that fiscal discipline is important and that we should not raise the debt limit nonchalantly. However, raising the debt limit will become inevitable due to the massive interest we have to pay. If we raise it sooner rather than later, and then work responsibly with the extra money, it will probably end up paying off more in the end.


    Recently, a new harsh budget plan was proposed by Paul Ryan of the Republican Party. This budget offers a mix of huge tax and spending cuts along with the shrinkage of the American safety net. His plan was to go beyond the bold packages recommended in December by bipartisan majorities and eliminate many income tax breaks to generate greater federal income. Overall, the budget would cut $5.8 trillion of spending in the 10 years through the year 2021. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office concluded that if this budget were inducted, by 2030, the average 65-year-old beneficiary would end up paying more than double for their health care than under today’s Medicare system. Using the new revenues, Ryan plans to lower tax rates to a maximum 25 %. This budget is definitely going to shake up this year’s already controversial budget debate between parties as well as next year’s presidential politics. Obama declined to lead in proposing the steps necessary to control the federal debt which is growing exponentially as the population ages and health care costs rise. Along with no presidential support with this supposed budget, huge political risks for Republican candidates for Congress in 2012 have been posed. Last year, after Republicans successfully campaigned in the midterm elections mostly through criticizing Democrats for cutting Medicare as part of the health-care overhaul, they now plan on eventually privatizing Medicare, contradicting one of their major policies.

    As we all know, the federal budget cannot be fixed overnight. In fact, it will take decades to substantially decrease the amount debt this country has accumulated. I believe that to overcome this budget crisis, a strict budget plan will need to be enforced. With that said, I’m not convinced that Paul Ryan’s suggested budget would be the most successful. Although I agree that the government should cut down on spending, I believe that Ryan’s budget is a little too harsh. If tax breaks aren’t given out, then there will be more disposable money for the government to spend on its citizens. In conclusion, there’s one thing that I’m sure about; democrats and republicans need to get their act together and make a compromise before the government gets shutdown.

    Cerys Humphreys
    7th period

  16. Geoff Thomason – 4/6/2011 – Period 7

    Stephanie Rennane and Eugene Steuerle recently took a closer look at the benefits of the new Medicare plan. When Medicare was originally founded in the 1960’s, the benefits easily exceeded taxes. They then began examining the total amount of money people pay in Medicare taxes over the course of their lives, as well as the total benefits they receive, to see if this is still true today. To do the calculations, Ms. Rennane and Mr. Steuerle, assumed that money saved by the government would earn a 2 percent annual return, after inflation. Even when they increased the rate of return to 3 percent (which is very high) they still got the same result. Americans receive more in Medicare benefits than they pay into Medicare, even after including the share of the tax paid by employers and even after including Medicare premiums.

    This is very good to know that if Obama’s Health Care Plan is put into action, then at least we know we are getting a good deal. If the results had come back that benefits did not exceed costs, then I don’t believe that many people would still be supporting these programs as thoroughly. This new report also increases my personal opinion about these Health Care Programs. My opinion is much higher now because I used to believe that the costs and taxes exceeded benefits nowadays. I think many Americans will feel this way too.


    David Morin, the founder of Path, a social network start-up, gave the signal and the company’s site and iPhone application went live. Within three hours, the site had tens of thousands of visitors. Since then, Path has walked away from takeover talks with Google for as much as $100 million, according to a person close to the company. The company has raised $11 million from 27 investors.

    It seems like this company, “Path,” and David Morin may go places. If Google offered one hundred million dollars for its takeover, this company definitely has a future. David Morin made the right choice by not selling his company to Google. It may seem like a lot of money right now, but I believe he could make a lot more if he sticks with his company. Who knows, this program may be the next leading social network.

    Chris Barth

  18. Government shutdown threat paralyzes contractors
    Many government workers are wondering whether or not their job is considered “essential.” Up to 2 million of them don’t know if they will even be paid or not during the potential shutdown. The company MicroTech has many federal employees, and is worried about whether or not the company can withstand an indefinite government shutdown. With budget negotiations going the way they are, MicroTech employees are attempting to prepare for a long “lockout.” MicroTech is not the only company in trouble either. In fact, many businesses with federal employees that are not large corporations are finding themselves in trouble.
    I think that the government needs to get their act together and decide on a buget. They have had upwards of seven months to come to compromise and still are having trouble doing so. Many people who have jobs without a direct link to the federal government wont notice the shutdown, but that doesn’t mean many peoples lives arent being affected in a bad way because of it. The longer the decision takes and the longer the shutdown lasts will only make things worse for Americans and it will be felt by more and more people the longer it takes. We can only hope that the shutdown is a wake up call for the people responsible for this strife in the first place.

  19. Discussions over this year’s budget have still it unsolved, although progress has been made. Right now the Democrats and Republicans are haggling over around $5 billion in cuts, a trivial sum compared to the grand total of money apportioned to the various arms of government. Negotiations include whether or not to prevent the government from giving payment to abortion providers and debates on limiting the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to restrict air pollution. Many believe that such ideological provisions should not be included on a budget bill. The shutdown is scheduled for Friday. There will be a meeting in the Oval Office Thursday night, which will hopefully resolve the conflicts.

    The government needs to not shut down. It would be very harmful for our country, especially in this time of economic hardship. It is not right for politicians to try and slide their political agenda into the budget bill when right now it is more important to have some government. Republicans should not be trying to stop abortion when we are facing losing many government services. I am sure that abortion spending is minimal when compared to the Pentagon’s budget or even to the total of the Congressmen’s salaries.

    Chiara Salemi

    Eric Plevy

    Most people have heard about the recent government shutdown and how it will affect us. What most people would not know is that this shutdown will actually cost money rather than save money. Government shutdowns may lay people off, but it also shuts down facilities that bring in revenue. For example, parks can bring in millions of dollars, but shutting a park down will cause us to lose this revenue. For each day that this shutdown continues, there will be money lost rather than saved. Until the Democrats and Republicans work out a compromise, certain sources of revenue will continue to be lost and expenses will continue to add up.
    In my opinion, this is absurdity. This whole situation is due to a disagreement about our budget. First off, this shutdown is serving the opposite of its intent. For everyday this continues, our nation will lose revenue. Second, there should be more motivation to create a planned budget due to the economic conditions we are suffering as of now. I am not taking sides here since both the Democrats and Republicans are to blame for not reaching a compromise about the budget, especially under the given economic conditions. A compromise needs to be reached urgently without disagreements upon just about every idea. Our government should be working together to help get our economy running again, and not splitting apart and arguing over separate ideas. This is important because for every moment this shutdown is occurring, we are losing revenue, gaining expenses, and increasing the unemployment rates. I thought this was appropriate since it has been a hot topic within the news and mainly because we have just started our unit on economics.


    The costs of Medicare is only going to go up and up as time goes on, due to a combination of steep increases for the costs of an individual enrollee coupled with the huge influx of enrollees as the baby boomer generation approaches 65. Medicare is already the most expensive part of our federal government's budget, and at the rate it's costs are increasing, the government will soon have money left for little else if nothing is done.

    Both parties are attempting to figure out what action to take against the looming issues with Medicare, but I don't think they are willing to take decisive enough action to really settle this issue. In all likelihood they won't until the Medicare system has gone too far and sapped our government of all its money.

  22. Leila Doerfer
    Period 6

    If there is a federal government shutdown, it would severely restrict the Food and Drug Administrations, FDA's, inspections. The FDA is an agency in the Department of Health and Human Services and it consists of nine centers and offices and employs 13,000 workers. It is not clear yet how many of these workers would be temporarily laid off. If there is a shutdown, the agency's Office of Regulatory Affairs, which oversees food inspections, won't operate at full capacity but it will have some inspectors on staff. This would mean that all inspections of food processing facilities and drug manufacturing plants would be prioritized by risk. If during the shutdown there happened to be an emergency situation, like if there were a food borne illness outbreak, the FDA would be able to call back the people who had been temporarily laid off. Right now the FDA is focusing primarily on monitoring food products coming from Japan for radiation. Also for higher radiation levels in existing food products that already in the market. These would not be affected by staffing changes. Some other FDA facilities that would operate at a reduced capacity would be Center for Biologic Evaluation, Center for Veterinary Medicine, Center for Medical Devices and Radiological Health.
    I feel like the FDA is too important for even some of it's workers to be temporarily laid off. They are the people that protect us from impure and unsafe food, drugs (medicine), and cosmetics. I know that i would be more worried about the stuff i eat if the FDA was one of the agencies to be partially shutdown. I honestly can't believe that out of all the things funded by the federal budget, they chose the FDA as one of them. I know things like certain museums would be affected but that's because they are sort of an accessory to the public. There isn't any way we could die without a museum but if we don't have people testing our food for bad chemicals and who knows what else, where would that leave us?


    This week I thought I could talk about medicare and what peolpe think is going to happen to the cost of it. Thiss artical from CNN money talks about. That in the futrue it will be really expensive. The more the years go by the more senors there is going to be inrolled. House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan's 2012 budget resolution turned the floodlights on Medicare, the health care program for seniors that is projected to take increasingly bigger bites out of the federal budget in the coming decades. Ryan's proposals for overhauling the program are dramatic. Democrats claim they will dismantle it. Ryan claims they will save it. Still the united states government are making a budget that will help those in need of medicare.It is financed through different things like, payroll takes and general revenue. They also said that by 2040, medicare will cover over 88 million people and cost nearly three time more that what it did in 2010. I really think that the united states is in big trouble because they don't have any money but people keep spending on differnet things.

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    If the government is to shutdown tomorrow, Friday, April 8, 2011, many government funded agencies will be affected. One of the agencies that will be affected is FDA. It is not said yet on how many employees will be furloughed. Since, FDA will not have all of their employees, the many centers and offices of FDA will not be able to operate fully. The only center that won't be affected by the shutdown is the Center for Tobacco Products because it is funded by the Tobacco Industry. Inspections of food and drugs will be restricted. Only plants that have history of serious safety concerns will be inspected first. However, foods that are being imported from Japan will still be inspected no matter what the shortages are. If there's a sudden outbreak of a food borne illness, FDA will be able to bring back their furloughed employees.

    It's terrible how the shutdown will affect so many people. These people who are going to be furloughed need their paychecks to live. It's not fair to them that they have to temporarily lose their jobs because the two parties cannot agree on anything or at least try to compromise. They cannot let this shutdown happen. The government is supposed to help us. This shutdown will do nothing but hurt us all. I cannot believe that the FDA is part of the agencies that will be affected. How are we supposed to trust what we eat now?

    Jenny Jin
    7th period


    Contrary to belief, a government shutdown might be completely terrible. In fact, it may have its benefits. For example, residents of the District of Columbia would have free parking, and state parks could potentially see more visitors and tourists. Approximately 40% of the civilian workforce, or 800,000 government workers, could be affected if a compromise isn't made among the democrats and republicans. However, psychiatrists could possibly be better off if a government shutdown takes place. Cappel, a psychiatrist, claims that emotions are contagious. In other words, a government shutdown will lead to depressed government workers, which will lead to more depressed people. Ultimately, Cappel predicts that these depressed people will visit psychiatrists. This article looks past the negative effects of a government shutdown and provides hope and optimism just in case a shutdown does takes place.

    I think that this article brings something important to residents of the United States: a positive perspective of a government shutdown. This is important because it will provide reassurance to people if a shutdown does occur. Additionally, it reinforces the idea that nothing can be completely bad. However, I do hope the democrats and republicans can reach an agreement and properly carry out their jobs. It's unfair for them to put the citizens of the United States in jeopardy due to their failure to communicate and compromise.

    Nicole Chang
    7th period

  27. Civics and Economics
    Busgirl Haque
    7th period

    The federal government is looking like it will lose roughly 800,000 members. Workers who are deemed, as non-essential will be asked to stay at home without pay if the budget is not agreed by in Congress by Friday. Lots of employs are hoping that there will be no shutdown. Employees who work through the shutdown get back pay as soon as lawmakers reach a budget deal, however, this is not the same for the non-essential employees. So far, no word has been released on who is essential and who is non-essential.
    I believe we discussed this issue in class. It’s a very bad situation. I sure hope that there will be an agreement by Friday on the budget so that hundreds of thousands of people don’t lose their jobs. This is a really tough time of the economy of our country and having 800,000 unemployed people will only make it worse.


    The signs of unemployment are dropping just like the number of people who are applying for benefits. This shows a sign that businesses are hiring more people and laying off less. The number of people seeking benefits dropped 10,000 all the way down to 382,000. This is the third drop in four weeks. The numbers have showed that there is s nearly 7 percent drop in the last eight weeks of people filing for benefits. But Toyota Motor Company has said they are shutting down some stores temporarily due to the shortage of parts coming from japan and this could cause for more people becoming unemployed. Along with tis information people have applied to borrow more money especially for car loans.

    I think that most of this information is a very positive step to get out of this mini recession or economic problems we are currently facing in North America. IT is very good to hear that businesses are starting to hire more people because this gets more people out of the lines to get benefits and gets them working, which is where they want to be. But with the news from Toyota saying they may be closing some stores due to the lack of products coming from Japan, it is not looking extremely positive for the next coming months. But although this is not the news everyone wants to hear people still need to keep their heads up and keep trying and trying to find suitable jobs and get out of those benefit lines.

    Leah Whitney

  29. Riley Hutchison
    7th period

    The president of the European Central Bank, Jean-Claude Trichet raised the benchmark interest rate on the euro for the first time since 2008. He believed that the only way to attack inflation, but economists think that this raise poses a threat to weaker economies such as Portugal, which recently requested a bailout. Ireland will now have to make higher payments on their mortgages, but Trichet simply says "benefits all, including, of course, those who have the most difficulty at the present". The actual increase is from 1% to 1.5%, and there is a possible increase in the near future. At the moment the Bank of England has its benchmark interest at 0.5%, although it has higher inflation. These rates all seem to have dire consequences for countries such as Greece, Ireland, and Portugal where they have problems borrowing money at a reasonable rate anyway. Some think that this is going to lead to a situation like what happened in the 1970s and 1980s when rates were increased because the price of oil was increased. The inflation of the euro area has risen from an annual rate of 2.6% in March and now is only at 2.2%.

    This seems like the solution to this problem will only lead to more problems in the long run. If interest rates are increased than the countries such as Ireland, Greece, and Portugal will be thrust into a deeper financial crisis. If the bank would keep the rates the same more people would be inclined to borrow money. If they are raised why will people come out if they will just have to pay more in the end. Economists seem to think that this won’t work as well as Jean-Claude Trichet thinks that it will. The country needs to find a different way of dealing with this crisis. A way that won’t jeopardize other countries financial stability.

  30. Ariel Gunn
    Period 7

    Tonight the third meeting on the budget fight took place. After the second meeting this afternoon, two of the leaders in congress stated that the discussions are moving negotiations and compromises forward. The main disputes are over things such as abortion and environmental issues, and they are currently fighting over about 5 billion dollars of the budget. Both sides are trying their hardest to do what they think is best for the people.

    I think this country may actually need the shutdown. People need to see that we still are in hard times financially. We need to see what could happen if we don't have enough money to keep our country running. I don't think the people in America realize what will happen when we can't make any more debt and we have to start paying it off, so I think that this potential shut down is a good thing for the people.

  31. Hannah Blackburn
    7th pd.

    Our debt to China is rising and rising because we keep importing goods. However, we are also exporting goods to China. From 2009 to 2010, the US sent 32% more exports to China. In 2010, we made a profit of $91.9 billion on exports to China. China has become the second largest importer, besides the US, and China is predicted to pass the US in imports in the next few years. The main exports from the US to China are computer components and automobiles, mainly from California, Washington, and Texas.
    It's great that we're making a dent in our debt to China. Whenever people mention China, they portray it as self-sufficient. It is a refreshing view to see that they need the US. China is running out of farmable land and other natural resources. They get a lot of crops from the US, which is the best kind of export for us because it will not return to the US in some form. Computer components are put in Apple products and then exported back to the US, which isn't very good if we want to lessen the debt. Although $91.9 billion is a lot of money, it cannot compare to the cost of our imports from China.

  32. Norman Archer
    Topic: Economics
    Government Shutdown Would Have Wide Ripples
    This article addressed the effects that a government shutdown would have. The impending government shutdown will have a large effect on the country because our government is connected to a wide spectrum of businesses in the economy. Things like National Parks, Museums, and Monuments will have to close because they will have no spending money. Our economy will be affected because businesses rely on statistics provided by the government to calculate figures (mortgage brokers and Wall Street analyst get their number from the gov). Government contracting companies will be put on pause because they will have no government to contract. Oh yeah, one more thing, 800,000 federal employees will go without pay.
    At first glance, the title, Government Shutdown, may seem like a terrible event (like the Great Depression or something). Although it is not to be taken lightly, Government shutdown is not the “be all end all” of the US. The shutdown will force the budget through, and that ultimately is what needs to happen. It isn’t the way we want it to happen, but it accomplishes what needs to be accomplished.

  33. Gavin Welch
    Per 7
    April 7th

    House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan released his budget resolution, a his proposal is to slash Medicaid by $1.4 trillion, cutting the program by over a third.The impact on would be very substantial on those who live off of medicaid. These people would take quite a big hit in their quality of life after these budget cuts. Equally worrying, however, is the expected job loss. Ryan estimates that his Medicaid proposal would cut the program by $207 billion in the next five years. This includes the elimination of the Medicaid expansion built into the Affordable Care Act as well as other cuts to the program. Because the program is a federal state partnership administered by the state, the cuts would be money right out of the state budgets while they are currently facing Over 300 Million dollars in cuts.

    I think that I can't really make a decision right now about this proposal. We are taking money from those who absolutely need it. On the other had I can completely understand where ryan is coming from. By taking money from people who aren't helping our economy one bit. This sounds harsh, but we can easily restore their funding after we fix our more time sensitive issues.

  34. Fishermen and the Gulf economy have been hit very hard since the BP oil spill a year ago. A controversy has arisen about the safety of the seafood caught in circumference of the spill. The FDA insists that the food there is completely fine for consumption and that there will be no health defects resulting from the food. Others believe that there is still oil in the coast but since our country’s economy is down, the government is trying to have more trade within the United States. A man named John Wathen decided that he was going to take aerial images over the Gulf and found remaining oil in the Gulf and fisherman fishing in it. Wathen realized those fishermen were faced with either not being able to pay the bills or fishing in murky waters.

    I feel like there are some slight exaggerations on both sides of this story. I believe that the FDA would not allow fisherman to export these fish if they had some serious problems, but I don’t find it hard to believe that if there were only small malfunctions that they would allow them to be sold. I don’t think that the oil is still covers the ocean like a blanket after a year but I do believe that there might be small amounts in the ocean. To allow bad fish to be sold to consumers as a way to stimulate the economy in the Gulf might help temporarily, but there would probably be some type of epidemic afterwards which would cost a lot more money and some lives. In the end, I don’t think the government is that cruel so I believe the fish are probably relatively safe.

    Jenny Vaughn

  35. Thomas Nguyen
    4.7.11 Period 7

    It looks like Greece and Ireland are alone in asking for an emergency bailout. Portugal's Prime Minister, Jose Socrates, said that he has asked for help from the European Commission to relieve Portugal's debt. Current estimates show that Portugal needs 75 billion euros, or about $106.5 billion to relieve their debt. However analysts say that Portugal may need 100 billion euros. Portugal did not say the exact date for the needed money. José Manuel Barroso, the president of the European Commission said that the Commission will give the money to Portugal in a very swift manner following regulations and rules. Last May, The Commission provided Greece 80 billion euros. Ireland recieved 85 billion in November.

    I am surprised another country in Europe has asked for an emergency bailout from the European Commission. At this rate, I expect at least 3 more countries to ask for an emergency bailout assuming that the global economy continues to plummet. I wonder what countries will ask help. The fact that the article says that the 75-100 billion euros is to provide a temporary relief from debt makes me think that Portugal's debt is extremely higher than that amount. I am astonished that there have not been any demonstrations, violence, riots or signs of government hatred in Portugal. There were riots everywhere in Greece last year. Maybe it is too early to tell. Another question I have on my mind is where the European Commission gets its money to bailout countries. I would assume it is part of the high taxes in Europe, but I am not sure.


    Mr Obama spent his third hour in the past 24 with republican and democratic representatives in order to attempt to ensure that a budget is passed. He has canceled his family vacation to Virginia and told the nation that if an agreement can be visably predicted by friday morning, he will begin preparations to close down the government. Democrats believe they came to an agreement at a 35% reduction however Republicans deny it and refuse to agree.

    i think that government will shut down on friday. how long the shutdown will last is to be yet determined. hopefully our senators and representatives will be able to put some sort of bill together quick enough to avert a major prolonged american abscence. Mr. Obama has had alot on his plate during his presidency and having the government shutdown during his recouperation for his re-election re run is not the way he wanted his first term to go. I hope that something will be able to evolve from this for the good of the american people.

  37. China and America have always been in some sort of a competition over what country exports the most amount. America recently has began to worry if jobs here will begin to move overseas and go to China. The only thing that we have hope for is that America has just exported thirty-two percent to China. In other words, it has achieved $91.9 billion. A stat of the United States' exports in the world are, Exports to China has risen all the way to 468%, and the exports to the rest of the world is only 55%. a study shows that, "China is now the fastest-growing destination for Americans exports." Most of the exports we are sending over there is from California, Texas, and Washington, and it is mostly parts like microchips, computer components, and aircrafts. It is expected that China will pass the United States and will be known as the world's largest importer. China has now began asking for more and more things from the United States, and this will keep going up.

    I have never really though about the competition in imports and exports between different countries. When I see most things, I mainly just think that they are from China. I never actually think about where they were imported from to make that object. I think it is really good news that we are making a lot of money off of our exports to China. Our nation is in a huge debt right now, and something like this can really loosen to stress on it. I hope China will keep asking for more, so we can begin to receive more and more money in return.

    The federal government shutdown will cause a lot of negative's not only estimating 800,000 federal employees.President Obama has warned that the looming shutdown could stall the already fragile economic recovery by choking off much-needed paychecks to workers and introducing another level of uncertainty in an already uncertain world. When the government shutdown for 20 days in the late 1995, the nation's economic growth was slowed by as much as a full percentage point in that quarter,according to some expertise, that the three moths that included the shutdown, federal spending fell 14.2% from the previous quarter, before rebounding 8.6% in the following quarter.
    The shutdown would also make it harder for lower-income families to get mortgage loans because the Federal Housing Administration would suspend its guarantee program.The F.H.A guaranteed about 21% of new mortgage loans in 2010,federal data shows.

    It seemed to be really short when I first heard that the government will shut down for only one week,if it must.But I have never thought about these lot of consequences, that it is like a chain, the control center, which is the federal government, stops working for some time, the rest of the chain have no difference with a broken string. A spokenman for the Bureau pf Labor Statistics, which calculates the unemployment rate, said that during a shutdown, the agency would not collect data,issue reports or respond to public inquiries, adding that the Web site might not be operational and would not be updated. I don't think shutting down the government that even though people don't have to go to work for a week, there will be a whole lot of going on during that week. I hope the moment I turn on the radio, it won't say the federal government is indeed shutting down.
    Jessica Yin
    7th period


    Apparetly, if the government shuts down, Congress will continue to be paid while federal workers will not. The House, currently under Republican control, blocked a bill to arrest these people's paychecks in a government shutdown
    I dont agree with this because it seems like through the whole ordeal, Congress is just being greedy and doesn't want not to be paid. Maybe I'm not understanding a bigger picture but even the author states that this is childish. I think there should be a way to at least somewhat cut Congressional pay, otherwise Congress might not fully understand the implications of the shutdown. I know this seems really absolute but this is how I interpreted the article.

    Jacob Harris
    7th Period

  40. White House faces a shutdown
    Maria Miggs

    Recently, our government has been moving closer and closer to a full shutdown where "unnecessary" costs will be cut. The white house has been working to avoid this option because of the consequence this action would have on the economy and the people whose jobs are affected by the shutdown. The predominant issue standing in the way of finding a solution is spending cuts. On Thursday there was a meeting to negotiate these cuts and a major point of discussion was restriction on money for Planned Parenthood. No agreements or progress has been made yet, but another meeting is planned for Friday.
    I think that we need to work as hard as we can to avoid a shutdown. Even with this eminent action looming, republicans and democrats can't agree on spending cuts. Hopefully at the meeting today the two parties can reach an agreement.

  41. Kim Rubish
    6th Period

    The nation is in panic at the moment because of the looming shutdown of the federal government. Republicans and Democrats have been unable to come to an agreement on the budget, but unless they manage to put aside their differences by the end of today, the federal government may very well shut down. This would means unpaid leave for many hardworking government employees. Obama has promised to bring both parties to the White House every day until the budget debacle is solved. Republicans are insisting on $100 billion in budget cuts, many of these cuts from programs that Democrats have deemed necessary. Multiple White House employees have said that if everyone agrees to be adults and have a little wiggle-room when it comes to the budget, they should be able to reach a rational agreement, avoiding federal
    government shutdown.

    I think that this is an extremely important issue. If the government shuts down, many hardworking citizens could end up unpaid for reasons they cannot help. While I understand that the Republicans would like to make large cuts to improve the budget, I think they need to be more willing to change. The Democrats have shown a willingness to work with the Republicans and come to a mutual agreement, but the Republicans won't take no for an answer in regards to their $100 billion budget cuts. Unless both parties learn to put aside their differences for the sake of the country, we will all suffer extremely.

  42. Economist say that A long term would harm the government and not produce the results to stimulate the economy. The deamge of the economy would fall on about 350 thousand workers that work for the national government. The totalt Loss of income for the federal workers would be around 6 million dollars.
    I think that the economy would not be stimulated just by shutting up the government. The government will not benefit form workers being shut out of jobs and homes. The downfall of this shut down is everthing and out come of it is ever;\y thing.


    According to this New York Times editorial, the forthcoming government shutdown is not actually about money. The approaching shutdown, which is a result of disagreements on the budget, is because republicans will not agree to the budget without the democrats (senate) meeting their demands. Republicans want three major cuts: to environmental protection, abortion, and to health care. As this author puts it: "Abortion. Environmental protection. Health care. Nothing to do with jobs or the economy... furloughing 800,000 federal workers, suspending paychecks for soldiers and punishing millions of Americans who will have to wait for tax refunds, Social Security applications, small-business loans, and even most city services in Washington." The democrats have already agreed to cut $33 billion from the budget so far. Thankfully, the white house and senate have said they will not give into these demands.

    I think that the republicans should take the extremely near shutdown a little more seriously. It's not the time to be pushing you’re agendas; our government is in trouble! This should be more about money, fiscal matters, than abortion. I hope that both parties can come together soon, because millions of Americans will be in trouble if they don't.

    Jessica Batson


    Less than a year ago, one of BP’s rigs exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, causing a major oil spill. BP has recently released a petition asking for permission to resume drilling in the Gulf. This has proven to be a very controversial debacle for President Obama, who released a statement last week claiming that there will be a future reduction in the United State’s independence on oil. BP’s officials remain hopeful, even though they have yet to receive permission to resume drilling. They hope to resume drilling at 10 deepwater production and development drills, operating under new, tighter restrictions. The oil company has yet to pay off the costs of the oil spill and they claim that they need to resume drilling in order to obtain the necessary money.

    I know that BP has suffered immensly from the oil spill in the Gulf, but I am very surprise that they have asked to resume drilling so soon after the accident. It has been less than one year, and they have yet to finish paying for the claims submitted by federal and state governments. I understand that the drills will resume operation under tightened restrictions, but I believe that BP should finish cleaning up the mess they caused before reopening these drills. The financial stress caused by the spill is sure to have put the company under extreme pressure, but I doubt that they have no money left for the necessary costs and compensation they still have to pay.

    Maria Yao, 6th


    Two young entrepreneurs have made it big in their online bussiness. Vincius Vacanti and Jim Moran made an online bussiness that sends out emails for online deals that are better than what you would normally get. These coupons provide deals like half off on haircuts and deals on things like meals and yoga classes. This business, Yipit, has taken off ever since the recession with more people looking for good deals to save some cash. The co-founders met in college and started out their bussiness as a place to find, sell, and buy used furniture. After some more toying-around with ideas, the two friends thought to make lemonade out of lemons and create a bussiness that would prosper during this financial crisis in our country.

    I think that these two friends were awesome to think of this bussiness and it was a smart idea, too. This idea of online coupons to help people during the recession helps everyone save money. I wish the best for these two entreprenaurs and hope their bussiness stays successful.

    Tristin Van Ord

  46. Ryan Rainey
    Period 6

    People have recently stated that a economic shutdown could possibly boost Obama’s stock for a future reelection. They compared this year with 1995 were Clinton eased his way through a reelection after a government shutdown similar to the one we are struggling with now.Clinton’s approval rating and perseption as a leader looked up after the shutdown because he battled through it and ended up happy. Even thouh the Democratic Clinton won the reelection, the republican party held strong in the house and congress sugesting that a shutdown could improve our struggling government. This could be exactly what obama needs with his political view. He could improve as a leader and be looked at as a better leader. Although there are lots of struggling issues out there, Reelection has to be on the mind of Obama and his staff.


    Amidst the crisis of a potential government shutdown, many different activities prepare for the shutdown. In the last few days, a government shutdown has steadily becoming closer and closer everyday. THe republicans and democrats can not together agree on many topics, causing tyhis porblem in the first plac. One big problem with this is that the passport agencies cease to work. If you are planning on going to gt a passport renewed or apply for one, it may not be possible. However, it is still possible if you have one to leave th country. Those who work at the post offices in the passport agency are bnot even permitted to return to their desk during the entire govenrment shutdown

    This is important because it is putting many peole out of work. These people rely on their jobs to keep them living the way they are. Most likely, these jobs provide them with money for shelter, food, and clothing. Without this, many people will be affcted and have a much tougher life. As well, this would affect all of those people who are travelling, commercially or provatley. Without being able to obtan a renwal on your passport, or get one in the first place, you would be stuck here. This could be very detrimental to those buisness men who have importnat meetings and other work to attend to aoutside of the US.

    Cole Shoup
    Period 7


    Jackson Wright
    6th period

    This article is about the recent possibilities of a government shutdown. The article outlines the major issues that are leading to disagreements on the budget and a likely government shutdown. The issues in the budget are not on spending, but rather on ideological, liberal pushes that the Republicans refuse to budge on. Republicans refuse to pass the budget because it includes local funding for abortions in the District of Columbia, funding for abortions as foreign aid, funding to move towards socialized healthcare, and funding to regulate greeenhouse gases.

    I believe that the republicans are very in the wrong here. Even though I have liberal beliefs, I view these things as services that should be provided to everyone. Our government should support our choice, and not take away our personal freedom by disallowing abortion. Our government should try to save our Earth by limiting greenhouse gases. And our government should move towards free healthcare for everyone. I certainly support the liberals in their movement and hope they can save us from a government shutdown.

  49. Tanner Gardner-7th Period

    Protests that took place on March 26th in the UK in response to cuts for university, arts and social programs have resulted in 200 or more arrests of demonstrators. The number of protesters was estimated to be near 500,000. Such a large turnout reflects the people’s will to tax big business instead of taking it out on the masses, yet politician’s reminiscent of former Prime Minister Thatcher (infamous for increasing income taxes) seem to be ignoring that will. Most of the protesters arrested were participating in a sit-in at Fortnum & Mason, planned as a non-violent protest by UK Uncut. The media however chose to focus on the destructive portion of the protest instead of the peaceful.

    How predictable for the media to show only one aspect of the protest and disseminate disinformation. As Adolf Hitler once said,” If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” Another bit of disinformation currently being circulated by London authorities is that the protesters who caused property damage were all anarchists. Of course, the popular definition of anarchism is mayhem and destruction, but anarchist philosophy couldn’t be further removed from that. Anarchism, as a philosophy, must be separated from people who are simply vandals breaking windows and spray painting buildings. Spray painting an anarchist symbol on a department store window doesn’t make one an anarchist. The London authorities’ lies are insidious and smart: if you can connect the London protesters, all 500,000 of them, to the longstanding image of a bomb-chucking anarchist, it won’t take long to turn popular opinion against the trade unions and students who organized the protests.