Thursday, September 29, 2011

Republicans, Republicans, Republicans!

You have 10 minutes at the start of class to make sure that you have saved your PowerPoint to the correct location on the Y: drive. After that your project is late.

Don't forget to study for your quiz tonight!

Republican Presidential Candidates
Here they are!
  • Michelle Bachmann
  • Herman Cain
  • Newt Gingrich
  • Jon Huntsman
  • Gary Johnson
  • Ron Paul
  • Rick Perry
  • Mitt Romney
  • Rick Santorum
And, of course
  • Sarah Palin
Over the remainder of this semester, you will get to know one Republican presidential candidate very, very well. You will work on assignments related to this candidate throughout the Republican candidate selection process.

Your first assignment, and the project we will spend the rest of this quarter on, will be to build a dossier for your candidate. You'll start today by answering a series of questions. Type your responses in an MS Word document and print it out. The document is due in my hands before the end of this class period.

For each question, paste the link where you found your information after your answer.
  1. Name your candidate and paste the link for his/her official website.
  2. What is a Republican? What values does the Republican Party stand for?
  3. Is your candidate a specific type of Republican (i.e., Tea Party, Libertarian, etc.)? Explain.
  4. Where does your candidate fall on the political spectrum? Explain.
  5. What state does your candidate come from? What can you find out about his/her background in that state?
  6. What past experience does your candidate have?
  7. Does your candidate's past experience prepare him/her to be President? Explain.
  8. What issues does your candidate seem to care most about? Explain.
  9. Why is your candidate running for president?
  10. Free Space: Anything else? Explain.
20 points.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Writing the Annotated Bibliography

An annotated bibliography lists the sources that you plan to use in a research paper.  List these using proper MLA format (as if you were typing a Works Cited).

After each citation, you include a brief description of the source.  The purpose is to cite the relevancy of each source.  The annotation should summarize important information in the source, perhaps the central theme of the source, evaluate the authority of the author, compare and contrast this source with another source, and/or remark on how you plan to use this source in your paper.

While the length of the annotation can vary with each assignment, the annotations for this assignment should be a paragraph (5 sentences).  The first three sentences should summarize the information in the source, and the last two sentences should state your interpretation and how you plan to use the source. Remember -- you will need at least 4 total sources for this project.

Example: (Notice: do not indent the first line of the entry. Indent all others. Single space each entry. Blue text represents your summary of the source. Red text represents your evaluation of the source.)

Greenhouse, Linda. “THE SUPREME COURT: Animal Sacrifice; Court, Citing Religious Freedom, Voids a Ban on Animal Sacrifices.” New York Times. 12 June 1993. Web. 5 November 2009.
        This article by 
Greenhouse overviews the Lukumi Babalu Aye v. City of Hialeah case. It takes out some of the more technical information included in the actual court case and replaces it with more summaries about the opinions of individuals involved in the case. The article also includes a brief history of the religion of Santeria, the religion of the church in question. Since it includes quotes from people involved in this case other than those of statements from the actual court document, this article is very important to use. These quotes add a little more depth to both sides of the argument and also to the final ruling.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A Different Constitution

While we think about the Preamble to the United States Constitution during our "We the People" project, it is interesting to think about the way things might have been. During the Civil War, the Confederate States of America had its own Constitution. It was in many parts identical to the U.S. Constitution, but had some key differences.

We The People: A Project!

According to George Washington, the Articles of Confederation were "...little more than shadow without substance." They did not form an ideal government for the country. In fact, they barely formed ANY sort of government at all.

The country needed more. They needed the Constitution. This document opens with one famous, nearly run-on, sentence: The Preamble.

The Preamble text:
“We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

Today, we will begin working on our first project. In the project, we will examine the Preamble and evaluate whether or not it still has relevance to modern life, government and politics.

Your annotated bibliography, with a minimum of 4 sources, is due Monday, September 26, 2011.

The final project is due Thursday, 9/29/11.

Examine the introduction to the project. 

Then, open your book to p. 68 and examine the breakdown of the Preamble phrases.

Now, a collection of rubrics:

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Your Notes

Here are the notes you presented in class today. Remember: I will take quiz questions from this material. I did not have time to format or edit any of this, so make sure you double-check it all against your reading:

The Revolutionary Roots of the Constitution
  • ·    Defines the basic structure of the government
  • ·    Divides the government into 3 branches: judicial, legislative, executive
  • ·    Describes power of branches
  • ·    Relationship btwn govt and states
  • ·    Makes itself supreme law of the land
  • ·    Written in 1787 for agric. Society
  • ·    Prevents anarchy

Freedom in Colonial America
  • ·    Land owners control property at own will
  • ·    No payments to support church
  • ·    No ceiling on wages or guilds on professional associations (no labor unions)
  • ·    Almost complete freedom of speech, press, and assembly
  • ·    Foot English bills through taxes

The Road to Revolution
Disliked treatment from British Gov’t
Britain taxes too steep
No taxation without representation
Protests from colonists:
      Sons of Liberty (men)
      Daughters of Liberty (women)
      Consumed American foods and made       American goods to avoid taxes
Boston Tea Party
Colonists dumped tea in Boston Harbor
Intolerable Acts
      Response to Boston Tea Party
      Harsh taxes on colonists
      Quartering of British troops
      Colonists decided it was time for a REVOLUTION!
Revolution Action
1775 a movement that the colonist were calling a revolution had begun b/w Massachusetts who was fighting the British at Concord, Lexington
Second Continental Congress remained in session served in government of the colony states.
On June 1776 the continental congress met to resolve that America declared independence from Britain.
Group of 5 men appointed to plan confirmation for reasons of independence

Declaration of Independence pt 1
·    Jefferson listed many deliberate acts of gov.
·    Jefferson denounced king for enslaving people
·    SC and Georgia dropped paragraph about slave trade in 1st draft of declaration
·    Thomas Jefferson drafted proclamation
·    Proclamation was edited by congress

Declaration of independence pt. 2
2nd continental congress  approved on July 4, 1776
Reps. Felt that some languages should be changed
Jefferson felt that it would change his plan
Signed by august
Catholics were in a tough position
2 choices, Join revolutionaries or be loyal to England
The war lasted longer than expected April 19 1775
Yorktown, Virginia October 19 1781
Greatest percentage of deaths than any other war
Britain had to send many supplies over

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Classroom Constitution

As promised, here are the resolutions passed during our Class Constitutional Convention. Use them to assist you when you are completing your homework.

As a clarification, remember: these are the resolutions you voted on in class when you were role-playing the parties involved in the real-life Constitutional Convention.

  1. Be it resolved that slavery will be legal
  2. Be it resolved that the slave trade will not be abolished
  3. Be it resolved that livestock and cattle can be used to pay off debts
  4. Be it resolved that bonds will be paid off in full
  5. Be it resolved that white bankers and white landowners should be able to vote

As a bonus, here are the issues the republican candidates talked about in the Tea Party sponsored debate on CNN:

  1. Texas job growth
  2. Is Social Security a Ponzi scheme? Perry said it was.
  3. HPV Vaccine, Merck, and Perry's executive order
  4. Immigration

Friday, September 9, 2011

Fri. 9/9/11 Homework: The Banality of Evil

Mohammad Atta
This morning, National Public Radio (NPR, WBEZ 91.5 FM Chicago) aired a story titled "'The Banality of Evil': Following the Steps to September 11. Listen to the story at WBEZ's website.

The story runs about 9 minutes. Part is transcribed at the link you can visit, but you need to listen to the story to get the whole thing.

When you're done, answer the questions below on loose leaf paper. They are worth 16 points total (2 points each), and are due on your desk at the start of Monday's class. Include at least one specific piece of information from the story in your response.

Don't forget to bring your handouts and question responses for our mock Constitutional Convention!

  1. Who was Mohammad Atta? Why is he the focus for this story?
  2. Who is Richard Clarke? What was his job?
  3. How did "luck and focus make all of the difference" in the events leading up to the September 11, 2001 attacks?
  4. Why does the report say that Al Qaeda was "lucky"?
  5. What difficulties did Clarke face when attempting to focus the government's attention on Al Qaeda? Consider both the Bush and Clinton administrations in your response.
  6. Why does one speaker refer to Atta's plot as "the banality of evil?"
  7. What were the attackers required to do on the night before September 11?
  8. When you're done listening to the story, think about the Obama administration. Imagine that you are Richard Clarke. Is the Obama administration in any way distracted? Explain.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Liberals and Conservatives

Today we will use the internet to find out information about some important politicians in the United States. Here they are:

1. Michelle Bachmann
2. Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas OR Elena Kagan
3. Rick Perry
4. Mitt Romney
5. Harry Reid
6. Timothy Geithner

For each individual, complete this information below in an e-mail to me. It is due before the end of this class period. 

Include the link where you found each piece of information. 

(5 points each, 30 points total for the e-mail)

a. Who is this person? Why is he/she important?
b. Is this person a liberal or a conservative? How can you tell?
c. What political party does this person belong to? Does he/she play any special role in that party?
d. Why has this person been in the news recently?
e. Based on what you've read, what is your personal opinion of this person? Explain, using information from your research.

You may find your own sources. However, if your source is not a reputable one, you will not receive credit for your response.

If you finish early, you can take a look at the book at this link: Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States.

Read the chapter titled "Columbus, the Indians and Human Progress".