AP Comparative Government Homework

Homework 10: Please continue on in the textbook. Please read pp. 136-45. Please this piece on Jeremy Corbyn--arguing that his far-left politics have driven the Labour party into a crisis.


Check out an example of Prime Minister's Questions from February 13th--note that Question Time starts about at about the 4:26 mark on the video. "Question 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. .  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. And he's a short clip showing the best of Bercow, the much put-upon Speaker of the House. Here's another medley of Bercow hits.



-Due Monday, February 25th



"Why are these professional war peddlers still around?" asks Tucker Carlson.

Nigeria's militarized democracy faces a test at the polls.

After 40 years, Iran needs another revolution.



Optional Stuff

This person does not exist. AI generated faces that (usually) look uncannily real.


Try this dialect quiz from the New York times to which sort of British/Irish accent you have!  Hint: probably none.


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

Homework 9: 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, please read Our World In Data--some amazing charts here.



Iran's grand illusion turns 40.

Murder of Iraqi novelist stirs fear and outrage.

Empowering the African Union.



-Due Friday, February 15th


Optional Stuff

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; placed here because of its strong emphasis on the United States.


Ten not entirely crazy theories explaining the great crime drop.

Homework 8: 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 14th



A new Americanism--given the enduring strength of the nation-state, should we focus our history teaching on it?

A united Ireland now looks like an increasing possibility.

Angela Merkel quits Facebook--and raises concerns.


Optional Stuff

Are you ready for microscheduling?

Is this really the most satisfying video in the world?

Homework 7: Please continue on in the textbook. Please read pp. 102-114.  Also, please check out the BBC's invaluable guide to Brexit here.


-Due Tuesday, February 12th



How Venezuela turns its useless bank notes into gold.

Iran's revolution turns 40.

Europe?  It does not exist.



Optional Stuff

If you donít speak Japanese but would like, momentarily, to feel like a linguistic genius, take a look at the following words. Try to guess their meaning from the two available options

1. nurunuru (a) dry or (b) slimy?
2. pikapika (a) bright or (b) dark?
3. wakuwaku (a) excited or (b) bored?
4. iraira (a) happy or (b) angry?
5. guzuguzu (a) moving quickly or (b) moving slowly?
6. kurukuru (a) spinning around or (b) moving up and down?
7. kosokoso (a) walking quietly or (b) walking loudly?
8. gochagocha (a) tidy or (b) messy?
9. garagara (a) crowded or (b) empty?
10. tsurutsuru (a) smooth or (b) rough?

These If you want to learn more about this phenomenon, check out this really interesting article about ideophones.


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 6: 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 11th



India will rise, regardless of its politics.

The right wing pundit "hashtag triggering" France.

The "tired" Taliban fights on as the US is desperate to leave Afghanistan.



Optional Stuff

The crime rate perception gap.

Repulsion, disgust and political orientation.

Homework 5: We're going to take a break from the textbook so I can catch up!    Here's a short piece arguing that we shouldn't worry too much about future tech--the case against techno-pessimism.


-Due Wednesday, February 6th



Venezuela's very normal revolution.

Demography has become the biggest story on the planet...and the world might actually run out of people.

China couldn't dominate Asia if it wanted to.


Optional Stuff

This new map of Beringia opens your imagination to a vanished landscape.

Buzzfeed failing--what went wrong in digital media?

Homework 4: Please continue on in the textbook.  Please read pages 54-80.  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--please watch it in full.


-Due Monday, February 4th



America never gave Afghan women a chance.

Is Huawei a pawn in the trade war?

The EU needs a Brexit endgame.


Optional Stuff

Pogo remix!

Did early humans tame themselves by killing off aggressive males?

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.  Both pieces are from 2017, but are still very relevant.


-Due Friday, February 1st



How is President George Weah doing in Liberia, one year after his election?

The EU cannot rescue Britain from Brexit chaos.

The whales have won--even as Japan sharpens its harpoons.



Optional Stuff

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


Ranking all 52 Superbowls.

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, January 31st



A brotherly takeover: could Russia annex Belarus?

The Trump Doctrine?

Mexico is bleeding. Can its new president stop the bleeding?



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!




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 7th period AP Comp Gov class, the folder would be entitled: Patrice Lumumba, CG7. 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!




Please check out this famous article by Harvard prof (and Stuy alum!) Samuel Huntington from Foreign Affairs--a counterpoint to the utopian philosophies that emerged around the time of the end of the Cold War.  Later this was turned into a book. 



The Pessimist's Guide to 2019.

The Left keeps getting Venezuela wrong.

The Chinese railways remolding East Africa.



-Due Wednesday, January 30th


Optional Stuff

How good are you at recognizing foreign languages?  Test your skill with Name that Language!

Those of you as obsessed with Chipotle as I am will find this oral history of Chipotle very interesting.

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