AP Comparative Government Homework


Homework 27 We move on to Mexico!  The Economist did a special report on our southern neighbor in 2012--please read the first section.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

North Korea said to remove major obstacle to denuclearization.

Sweden's violent reality is undoing a peaceful self-image.

Erdogan's election surprise in Turkey.

 

 

-Due Monday, April 23rd

 

ALSO

 

MINI-PAPER 2: In exactly three  pages, I want you to compare some aspect of Chinese government to some aspect of Russian government.  Go crazy--choose whatever you want!

 

 

-Due Tuesday, May 1st

 

 

Optional Stuff

Super slo mo of a compact disc shattering, representing the death of my youth.


Homework 27: Please read Project Syndicate's piece "Confronting China's Digital Challenge,"--a series of essays on the rise of Chinese tech.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Iran's real enemy in Syria.

The tragedy of Thailand.

Ethiopia:  A land in need of a new story.

 

-Due Thursday, April 19th

 

Optional Stuff

Watch a Youtuber try British rations from 1899. Are they still edible?


Homework 26: Please read pp. 322-329 in this excerpt. Please also read "Good President, Bad Emperor," a bunch of nuanced takes on Xi Jinping's recent power grab.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

"They eat money." How graft enriches Mandela's heirs in South Africa.

Why the Trump-Kim talks will fail.

Modi's long silence as women in India are attacked.

 

-Due Wednesday, April 18th

 

Optional Stuff

Don't trust adults!


Homework 25: Please read pp. 322-329 in this excerpt. Please also read "Good President, Bad Emperor," a bunch of nuanced takes on Xi Jinping's recent power grab.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

"They eat money." How graft enriches Mandela's heirs in South Africa.

Why the Trump-Kim talks will fail.

Modi's long silence as women in India are attacked.

 

-Due Wednesday, April 18th

 

Optional Stuff

Don't trust adults!


Homework 24: Please read pp. 312-322 in this excerpt. Also read this hilarious story about the Chinese government's attempt to rein in its army of 100 million dancing grannies (here's a video about the phenomenon). Also, here's an interesting piece about how the Chinese government uses nationalism to increase its popularity from the Brookings Institute.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

How to ensure Africa's bold free trade area propels industrialization.

First they came for the Rohingya...

Europe's new "Eastern Bloc."

 

 

 

-Due Tuesday, April 17th

 

 

Optional Stuff

Is the black hole at the center of our galaxy a gigantic quantum computer?


Homework 23: Also check out this story about the increased effort of the Chinese government to oversee nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). And, in Moscow, a special highway helps the privileged avoid traffic.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Four years ago, more than 200 girls were kidnapped by Boko Haram in Nigeria. Today, the New York Times has an excellent piece on those who returned.

Australia, Vietnam, the diaspora and generational change.

Bitcoin is eating Quebec.

 

 

 

-Due Friday, April 13th

 

 

Optional Stuff

Amazing photographs of waves.


Homework 22: Please read pp. 302-312 in this excerpt  Also here's an interesting piece about the Chinese trend of gay men marrying lesbians to conform to societal norms.

 

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Does the jailing of former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva show that Latin America is approaching the end of its corruption era? Or does it send a dark message to the poor?

Israel tries to expand its power in Africa.

High-level corruption threatens Moldova's European aspirations.

 

-Due Thursday, April 12th

 

 

Optional Stuff

Really cool graphic on the NYT--albeit from 2015. Also an amazing "Come Together" cover on the gayageum.


Homework 21: Please read pp. 291-302 in this excerpt.  Also, please read this Economist special report from 2016 on the rise of China's new middle class. And here it is: The Secret Document that Transformed China!

 

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

The West's defeat in Syria is complete.

Orban poised to tighten grip on power.

Does Black Panther's Wakanda represent a possible escape from the resource curse

 

-Due Wednesday, April 11th

 

 

Optional Stuff

Fantastic piece in the New Yorker on how South Korea has become the plastic surgery capital of the world.  Here's a GIF showing how similar the faces of beauty pageant contestants look. Here's 30 startling before-after pictures of Korean plastic surgery.


Homework 20: Please read pp. 280-91 in this excerpt. And why, exactly, did Kim Jong Un visit China?

 

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

It's time for the EU to get real.

Was the Arab Spring a black swan event?

The Afghan quagmire: corruption persists.

 

 

-Due Tuesday, April 10th

 

 

Optional Stuff

A bit late, but here's a cool article on Pi.


Homework 19: We are beginning to read Ethel Wood's section on China.  Please read pp. 270-280 in this excerpt. Also, check out this nice roundup from the NYTimes on the annual meeting of the National People's Congress, China's rubber-stamp legislature. And a secret summit between Xi Jinping and Kim Jong Un revealed! And Kim's private train secrets detailed! Finally... does a country need to have a viable manufacturing sector to remain rich?

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Victory for Kremlin as Nordstream 2 is approved by Germany.

Malaysia's dire democratic crisis.

The Mekong--more dams, more damage.

 

 

-Due Thursday, March 29th

 

Optional Stuff

Did culture kill the two parent family?


Homework 18 We are beginning China! Check out China's Great Leap Backward, an article from the Atlantic Magazine written by James Fallows--an American journalist who lived in Beijing for many years. The piece is from 2016, but foreshadows many of today's issues.  Also read this article from the New Yorker's Evan Osnos "Xi Jinping may be president for life.  What will happen to China?"  Finally, Handling Xi Jinping, China's "President for Life." Finally, check out this link: crazy smog in Beijing--click on images 2-4 to bring and dispel the haze.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Here's the piece I mentioned in class yesterday on the different types of conservative foreign policy.

Can it be?  Putin has actually united Europe in opposition to his shenanigans?
Why everyone loves Israel now.

 

Bonus for energy nerds: Is gas global yet?

 

 

 

-Due Wednesday, March 28th

 


Homework 17: Let's finish Russia! Thanks to Eric Li, we now have a MUCH better version of the textbook.  Please note that this PDF contains ALL the pages goes up to the end of China.  Here's the second half.  That being said, please read pp. 246-58. Vladimir Putin's most effective enemy--American businessman Bill Browder. And how much money does Putin have, exactly?

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Social media beats censorship in Iran.

New tension between China and Taiwan.

A Saudi son of the Iraq War.

 

 

-Due Tuesday, March 27th

 

 

Optional Stuff

Have you heard of "eephing"--also known as "hillbilly beatboxing"? Here's a sample.


Homework 16: More Russia. Please read pp. 238-46 in this section. "This is How the West Ends"--pretty dramatic stuff from Anne Applebaum, though the piece is a couple years old. Vladimir Putin is still a little man trying to prove that he's a big man, says Robin Wright.

 

-Due Friday, March 23rd

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

The battle over Nord Stream II.

The Middle East's age of innocence is over.

History hangs heavy over Hungary.

 

 

 

Optional Stuff

End the scourge of clock changing! Also, how well do you really know the NYC subway?


Homework 15:  Please read pp. 226-238 in this section. Shocker--Putin reelected by large margin! And now... post-Putin Russia?

 

-Due Wednesday, March 21st

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Requiem for the dead French political right.

Saudi Arabia has become a geopolitical loose cannon.

How a poor community in Mali became a trailblazer for tracking child mortality.

 

 

Optional Stuff

Fascinating graphic illustrating the world's nuclear stockpile. Also, rap stars and pre-16th century art resemblances?


Homework 14: More Russia! Please read pp. 215-226 in this section. Also, here's "Understanding Stalin," a review of Stephen Kotkin's biography of Stalin.  Kotkin was the author of the FA piece from last night's homework.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe under fire!

Was Egypt's bond sale a sign of hope or desperation?

China's influence looms as Sierra Leone heads to the polls.

 

-Due Tuesday, March 20

 

Optional Stuff

A weasel riding the back of a flying woodpecker?  Can it be real?  Can it be?

And on the subject of birds, why ravens and crows are Earth's smartest birds.


Homework 13: Deeper into Russia! Please read pp. 205-215 in this reading. Also, please read this fantastic article from Foreign Affairs about the rise of Vladimir Putin (Russia's nightmare dressed as a daydream).

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Russia views itself as the world's scapegoat (article by Polazzo alum Andrew Roth)

Will Italian populism save Europe?

The complicated politics of land appropriation in South Africa

 

 

-Due Friday, March 16th

 

 

Optional Stuff

Is cryonics just a scam?


Regarding Governor Kasich's Visit: At the moment, to the best of my knowledge, the event is on.  If you are in my 4th period class, please go directly to the theater.  If you are in my 3rd period class, please click here to print out the Stuy absence note.  Obviously you can only come if the teacher lets you go. Please apologize on my behalf to your teacher for the lateness of the request--I just got the go ahead at about 5:30pm. Thanks, and hope to see you there!

 


Homework 12: We begin our unit on Russia! Please read pp. 191-205 in this reading. Three years ago, reformist politician Boris Nemtsov was murdered in Russia. Thus far, the perpetrators have not been brought to justice--though it seems pretty certain that the culprit is Chechnyan strongman Ramzan Kadyrov.  Check out this fascinating New Yorker piece about him.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

The death of the center.

Kim to Trump: Let's make a deal!

Why I am running for president of Venezuela.

 

-Due Friday, March 9th

 

 

Optional Stuff

From 1995 in Newsweek--some people call this "the wrongest article ever written."


Homework 11: We are moving on to a new chapter in the textbook on supranational entities, focusing on the European Union--please read it: 167--186.  Also, please read this article from the 2015 Economist.

 

-Due Monday, March 5th

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Turkey is turning into the next Pakistan.

"I want my face back": anti-Mafia witness in Italy says.

Will Jordanians bear the burden of reforms?

 

 

Optional Stuff

Some great stuff from Francis Fukuyama on European identities.

 

This is an amazing machine!


Homework 11: We are moving on to a new chapter in the textbook on supranational entities, focusing on the European Union--please read it: 167--186.  Also, please read this article from the 2015 Economist.

 

-Due Monday, March 5th

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Turkey is turning into the next Pakistan.

"I want my face back": anti-Mafia witness in Italy says.

Will Jordanians bear the burden of reforms?

 

 

Optional Stuff

Some great stuff from Francis Fukuyama on European identities.

 

This is an amazing machine!


Homework 10: Please continue on in the textbook up to page 156.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Ethiopia's unrest invites global competition.

Two on Italy: (1) Why is Silvio Berlusconi back again? (2) A murdered journalist's last investigation into the shadowy 'Ndrangheta

Portrait of a Turkist novelist as prisoner.

 

-Due Friday, March 2nd

 

MINI-PAPER 1: In two to three  pages, decide which form of government is superior--that of the United States or that of Great Britain. A word of caution: It's okay to say that US Government works best for the US and British government for the Brits, but if this is your choice, be sure to elaborate... Couldn't the US be a unitary state?  Why not let the British regions be autonomous? You get the idea.

 

-Mini Paper Due Monday, March 5th.

 

 

Optional Stuff

Is the dreaded Rebound Effect making our gains in energy efficiency meaningless?


Homework 9: Please continue on in the textbook. Please read pp. 136-45. Please these two pieces on Jeremy Corbyn--one fearing him and his movement, the other advising that he embrace "soft" Brexit.

 

Check out an example of Prime Minister's Questions from February 21st--note that Question Time starts about at about the 2:28 mark on the video. "Number 1" is the traditional first question, to which the PM always gives the same response.  To read along, check out this transcript. Obviously, the star of the show is the Prime Minister, Theresa May and her chief inquisitor is Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the opposition Labour party.  Corbyn is an interesting individual--representing the old, pre-Blair Labour party. The men and women seated on the front benches are the government (on the Tory side) and the shadow government (Labour).

 

Note: when members stand after a point, it means that they are trying to get the attention of the Speaker to ask a question. Note that all of the comments of the Prime Minister are always directed towards the Speaker.  The Speaker calls for order (frequently) and also calls on members to ask questions. Also note at 5:40 when he lectures the whole body as if they were naughty schoolchildren.  The most frequent interlocutor of Theresa May is Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the opposition Labour party. The people sitting next to the Prime Minister are the members of the Cabinet and the people sitting next to Corbyn are the members of the shadow cabinet.

 

...and here's a clip of former PM David Cameron calling (since ousted) Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls a turkey.

 

 

-Due Wednesday, February 28th

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Xi Jinping makes his move--abolition of China's term limits.

How Iran's rise is remaking the Middle East.

What a chemical attack in Syria looks like.

 

 

 

Optional Stuff

You've always wanted to hear Tainted Love played on thirteen floppy drives and one hard drive, haven't you?


Homework 8: Please continue on in the textbook. Please read pp. 122-36. Also, check out this Economist article from 2010 about the (failed) Lib Dem attempt to change the voting system in the UK.  Also: this might be one of the most important (and depressing) articles about the state of the world that you'll read--Our Miserable 21st Century.  Contains some really mind-blowing stats.

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Meet Cyril Ramaphosa, the new president of South Africa.

Jonghyun and depression in South Korea.

Will Netanyahu's scandal impact Middle East security?

 

 

-Due Tuesday, February 26th

 

Optional Stuff

Ten not entirely crazy theories explaining the great crime drop.


Homework 7: Please continue on in the textbook. Please read pp. 114-122.  Also, a primer on charismatic leadership--why we love tyrants. And, how worried should be be about undemocratic liberalism?

 

-Due Thursday, February 15th

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

The fetishization of Kim Yo Jong.

Mexico's drug war is no closer to an end.

Horror in Burma

 

Optional Stuff

Amazingly animated, the Eagleman Stag will blow your mind.

 

Is this really the most satisfying video in the world?


Homework 6: Please continue on in the textbook. Please read pp. 102-114.  Also, please read this Economist page about the implications of Brexit.

 

-Due Tuesday, February 13th

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

Mideast tensions get even worse.

China's cobalt conundrum in Congo.

Time to kick Turkey out of NATO?

 

Optional Stuff

These clips of early color motion pictures from 1922 are really haunting--some of the earliest use of color you will ever see.

 

Check out Li Hongbo's bonkers paper sculptures.


Homework 5: We are beginning our Britain unit!  To that end, please continue on in the textbook. Please read pp. 94-104.  Also, please read  these two articles from the Economist on Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) and personal liberties. Note that ASBOs have been superseded by new laws since 2015, but the basic elements survive in the legal code. Also, note that things have changed.  David Cameron is no longer Prime Minister and Britain has voted to leave the European Union.

 

 

-Due Monday, February 12th

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

How the populist right is redrawing the map of Europe.

Hijab protests expose Iran's core divide.

The truth about Poland's role in the Holocaust.

 

 

Optional Stuff

Some sobering details about the birth rate in China.

 

You might have already seen this amazing short history of Japan.  Definitely worth a watch!


Homework 4: Please continue on in the textbook.  Please read pages 54-80.  Also, the Economist argued in 2011 that California suffered from an excess of democracy. How can that be?  Please read this piece.

 

-Due Tuesday, February 5th

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

What happens when the water runs out in Capetown? Day Zero.

New president of Liberia and former soccer star George Weah addresses the nation for the first time.

In Afghanistan's unwinnable war, what's the best loss to hope for?

 

Optional Stuff

Pogo remix!

 

Those of you who have had me before know that I'm a bit worried about all humans being pushed out of the workforce.  This film elegantly explains why this is a threat: Humans Need Not Apply.


Homework 3: Please continue on in the textbook.  Please read pages 34-54.  Also, please read this report from the (libertarian) Niskanen Institute about the rise of two separate moral systems in the United States. And if you found it interesting, this piece in by Thomas Edsall in the New York Times reflects more on its conclusions.

 

-Due Friday, February 2nd

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

The resurrection of Silvio Berlusconi

Poland's holocaust law seeks to weaponize memory

East v. West: the new battle for Europe.

 

Optional Stuff

A super interesting read in Bloomberg about the rise of Uber and Airbnb.

 

This guy watched every single Superbowl and then ranked them.


Homework 2: This is the first excerpt from the textbook.   Please read pages 12-34.  Also, check out this piece written by Bill and Melinda Gates entitled "Three Myths on the World's Poor." 

 

-Due Thursday, February 1st

 

OTHER WORLD POLITICS NEWS:

The real purpose of Russia's presidential election.

African deportations cause religious controversy in Israel.

Romania backslides on corruption.

 

 

Optional Stuff

Best Simpsons opening sequence ever?

 

An amazing retrospective on National Geographic maps.


Homework 1: Please go to this form and enter your information!

 

ALSO:

 

You should do the following:

 

1) Make sure you have a Dropbox account.

 

2) Share a folder with me.  The format should be as follows:  If your name were Patrice Lumumba and you were in my 3rd period AP Comp Gov class, the folder would be entitled: Patrice Lumumba, CG3. Please do not omit the "CG" in front of your period number. My e-mail address for sharing is mpolazzo@gmail.com

 

3) Upload a headshot of yourself that (a) is not too large and (b) actually looks like you. Place it in the shared folder. Name it patricelumumba.jpg (substitute your first and last names).  Please note that all headshots should be in JPEG form!

 

4) All uploaded data is due by the start of the period that I teach you on Wednesday!

 

-Due Wednesday, January 31st

 

Optional Stuff

The Atlantic Magazine has an amazing photo blog called "In Focus."  Check it out here.

 

The Pessimist's Guide to 2018.