Gov’t: 04/23/18 Homework and Notes

April 23, 2018

Copy and answer questions 1-15 and 21-22 on page 386 to review Chapter 13. Due on Thursday, 04/26/18.

Chapter 13: The Presidency

Section 5: The Election

Origins of the Electoral College

The Constitutional Convention considered several possible methods of selecting a president.

One idea was to have the Congress choose the president.
• But such an arrangement would upset the balance of power between the legislative and executive branches of the federal government.

A second idea was to have the State legislatures select the president.
• This idea could erode federal authority and thus undermine federalism.

A third idea was to have the president elected by a direct popular vote.
• But the Framers feared that without sufficient information about candidates from outside their State, people would naturally vote for a “favorite son” from their own State or region.
• At best, the most populous States would always decide the choice of president with little regard for the smaller ones.

The Presidential Election Process
1. Each political party chooses nominee for presidency during late summer conventions.
2. Voter cast ballot for president every four years on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. In reality, the voters are actually voting to decide how the electors in their state (Electoral College) will vote.
3. The party whose candidate receives the most popular votes in any state wins all electoral votes of that state even if the margin of victory is only one popular vote.
4. The presidential candidate must have at least 270 out of 538 electoral votes (the number of representatives and senators plus 3 for D.C.)
5. In December, the electors from the Electoral College cast their official vote for president and vice president. This occurs on Monday following the second Wednesday in December.
6. On January 6, both houses meet in the House of Representatives to open and count the ballots. Congress will officially declare the winner of the election.

Electoral College Issues

Winner takes all
• It allows a candidate who loses the popular vote to win the electoral vote because a candidate can still get more electoral votes even after getting less popular votes.

Third-party candidates
• A strong third-party candidate could win enough electoral votes to prevent either major-party candidate from receiving a majority of the votes unless his party bargains to release electoral votes to either major-party candidates.


Election by the House
• Candidate needs 26 out of 50 states votes to win presidential election, all state has same weight. If representatives cannot agree on a candidate, the state loses its vote, if House favors the third-party, it would be hard to win.

The District Plan
• One idea is to choose electors from congressional districts where each state will have two electoral votes and one vote for each congressional district candidate. Whoever won the most district votes would get the two electoral votes.

The Proportional Plan
• Another plan is the presidential candidates would win the same share of a state’s electoral vote as the popular vote. It can cure the winner-take-all problem but it would make the election process more complicated.

Direct Popular Election
• If the people directly elected the president and vice president, it would undermine federalism because the states would lose their role in choice of a president, and candidates would concentrate their efforts in large cities.

National Bonus Plan
• Keep Electoral College System intact, but award 102 electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote.

538 + 102 = 640

321 Electoral Votes is needed to win the election.


Econ: 04/23/18 Homework – Due on Wed, 04/25/18

April 23, 2018

Translate the notes posted below.

Ch.12 Gross Domestic Product and Growth
Sec.1 Gross Domestic Product

Gross Domestic Product: the dollar value of all final goods and services produced within a country’s border in a given year.

Final goods are finished goods such as cars, refrigerators, and computers.

Intermediate goods are parts that are used to complete the final goods. Examples: engine parts such as pistons and engine blocks, brake rotors and pads.

Define within a country’s border:

A Honda Civic produced in Ohio?
YES, because it is produced in the U.S.

A Chevrolet Cobalt produced in Canada?
NO, it is produced outside of the U.S.

2 ways that GDP can be calculated:

1. Expenditure Approach:
The amount spent by consumers on durable and nondurable goods and services.
2. Income Approach:
This is done by adding all the incomes together in the economy.
In theory, the total for both approaches should be the same, but in reality, because people tend to spend less than their total income.

Therefore, the income approach is the more accurate and is the preferred approach by economists.

A country’s GDP can be used to gauge the living standards of its citizens, but the best indicator is GDP per capita.

Explain how each of these goods and services can contribute to the GDP:
Car, computer, Washing machine, High definition TV.

Critical Thinking:

1. What is the difference between Nominal GDP and Real GDP?

Real GDP is measured in constant unchanging prices while nominal GDP is measured in current prices. (Real GDP does not take inflation into account, so it is better for making comparisons).
2. List a few things that you do that can be considered as a nonmarket activity.

Washing your car, cutting your own hair, cleaning your house, cooking for yourself, and mowing your own lawn.

3. What do you need to do to figure out your disposable personal income?

Personal Income – Individual Income Taxes = Disposable Personal Income

4. What economic activities are not included in the GDP?

Activities such as private party transactions such as used car sale, sale of illegal goods, under the table wages, illegal earnings from gambling are not included.

5. If aggregate demand rises, what happens to Real GDP? What happens to price level?

The GDP and price level will rise as a result.

Gov’t: 04/16/18 Homework

April 16, 2018

Presidential Roles – Google Document

1. Summary paragraph of 5 sentences minimum to describe your assigned
2. Two actual examples under the Trump Administration.
3. A video example under any President in the 20th – 21st century.

Econ: 04/16/18 Homework and Notes

April 16, 2018

1. Copy and answer questions 1-18 on page 294-295 to review Chapter 11. Also translate your work.
Due on Tuesday, 04/24/18 on the day of your Chapter 10-11 test.

2. Translate the notes below…

Ch.11-2 Bonds and other Financial Assets

Bonds: loans or IOUs that the government or a company must repay to an investor.

Most bonds can be classified as a low risk investment.

When a bond is issued, the price you pay is known as its “face value.”

Once you buy it, the issuer promises to pay you back on a particular day — the “maturity date” — at a predetermined rate of interest — the “coupon.”

For instance, you buy a bond with a $1,000 face value, a 5% coupon and a 10-year maturity. You would collect interest payments totaling $50 in each of those 10 years. When the decade was up, you’d get back your $1,000 and walk away.

3 things to look for when buying bonds

1. Coupon rate: interest rate earned by the bond holder.
2. Maturity: when the bond is due for redemption, or when the payment is due to the bond holder.
3. Par Value: face value or the principal amount of the bond.

In some situations, bonds can be bought at less than the face value.

1. If the interest rate on the same bond is higher now.
2. If a corporation is not doing well financially.

A key difference between stocks and bonds is that stocks make no promises about dividends or returns.

When a business or a government issues a bond, however, it guarantees to pay back your principal (the face value) plus interest. If you buy the bond and hold it to maturity, you know exactly how much you’re going to get back

That’s why bonds are also known as “fixed-income” investments — they assure you a steady payout or yearly income.

Types of Bonds

U.S. Government Bonds
The bonds issued by Uncle Sam are called Treasuries. They’re grouped in three categories.

* U.S. Treasury bills — maturities from 90 days to one year
* U.S. Treasury notes — maturities from two to 10 years
* U.S. Treasury bonds — maturities from 10 to 30 years

Treasuries are widely regarded as the safest bond investments, because they are backed by “the full faith and credit” of the U.S. government.

Municipal bonds are a step up on the risk scale from Treasuries, but they make up for it in tax benefits.

Thanks to the U.S. Constitution, the federal government can’t tax interest on state or local bonds (and vice versa). Better yet, a local government will often exempt its own citizens from taxes on its bonds, so that many munis are safe from city, state and federal taxes.

Corporate Bonds

Corporate bonds are generally the riskiest fixed-income securities of all because companies — even large, stable ones — are much more susceptible than governments to economic problems, mismanagement and competition.

The lower the company’s credit quality, the higher the interest you’re paid.

The credit quality of companies and governments is closely monitored by two major debt-rating agencies: Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s. They assign credit ratings based on the entity’s perceived ability to pay its debts over time. Those ratings — expressed as letters (Aaa, Aa, A, etc.) — help determine the interest rate that company or government has to pay.

Corporations, of course, do everything they can to keep their credit ratings high — the difference between an A rating and a Baa rating can mean millions of dollars in extra interest paid.

But even companies with less-than-investment-grade (Ba and below) ratings issue bonds. These securities, known as high-yield, or “junk,” bonds, are generally too speculative for the average investor, but they can provide spectacular returns.

Chapter 11: Financial Markets
Section 3: The Stock Market

Top Things to Know About Stocks

Stocks aren’t just pieces of paper.
When you buy a share of stock, you are taking a share of ownership in a company which is owned by all the shareholders, and each share represents a claim on assets and earnings.

Stock prices track earnings. Over the short term, the market is affected by enthusiasm, fear, rumors, and news. Over the long term, though, it is the earnings that determine whether a stock’s price will go up, down, or sideways.
If the price per share gets too high, the issuing company will split the stock to entice more investors.

Individual stocks are not a good representation of the market. A good stock may go up even when the market is going down, while a poor performing company can go down even when the market is booming.

A great track record does not guarantee strong performance in the future. Stock prices are based on projections of future earnings. A strong track record is encouraging, but even the best companies can falter.

You can’t tell how expensive a stock is by looking only at its price. Because a stock’s value is dependent on earnings, a $100 stock can be cheap if the company’s earnings prospects are high enough, while a $2 stock can be expensive if earnings potential is dim.

A smart portfolio positioned for long-term growth includes strong stocks from different industries (DIVERSIFICATION). As a general rule, it’s best to hold stocks from several different industries. That way, if one area of the economy goes into the dumps, you have something to fall back on.

It’s smarter to buy and hold good stocks than to engage in daytrading. The cost of trading has dropped dramatically to less than $10 a trade. But active daytrading requires paying up-to-the-minute attention to stock-price fluctuations.

Any returns (profit) will be considered as capital gains subject to be taxed. If an investor suffers a capital loss, that amount can also be deducted from your taxable income.

Gov’t: Two assignments due on Friday

April 12, 2018

1. Copy and answer questions 1-6 on page 340 and 346 in Cornell note format to review Chapter 12, Section 3 and 4.

2. Complete 3 pages of Cornell notes for Chapter 13, Section 1 from page 354-358.

Gov’t: Chapter 12-Section 3 and 4 Notes

April 11, 2018

Chapter 12: Congress in Action
Section 3: How a Bill Becomes a Law – The House

Step by Step Process of How a Bill Becomes a Law.

1. A bill is a…
proposed law presented to the House or the Senate for consideration.
2. The ideas for bills can come from…
private citizens, the executive branch, and special interest groups.
3. A resolution deals with matters that…
concern either house alone such as the adoption of new rules of procedure or the amendment of some existing rule.
4. A joint resolution is like a bill because…
it has the force of law.
5. A concurrent resolution deals with…
matter in which both houses must act jointly without the force of law.
6. At a first reading of a bill, the clerk…
numbers and names the bill and enters it into the House Journal and Congressional Record.
7. Five actions that a committee may take on a bill are… report it favorably, refuse to report it (pigeonholing), report it in amended form, report it unfavorably, or report a substitute bill written by the committee.
8. Due to the size of the House, no member can debate about a bill… for more than one hour without the unanimous consent of the House.
9. Four types of votes in the House are…
voice votes, standing votes, teller votes (rarely happens now, been replaced by electronic voting) and roll-call votes.
10. After a bill has been passed and signed by the Speaker, it is…
placed on the Senate president’s desk.

Chapter 12: Congress in Action

Section 4: The Bill in the Senate

Bills must be introduced in the Senate by senators. It gets assigned a number and a short title, read twice and then finally referred to a committee.
The Senate’s debate uses a style where all the Senators can argue for an unrestrained amount of time.
• This style opens the debate to a filibuster, which is a stalling method to delay and prevent senate action.
• The Senate has grown tired of these intentional prolonging of debates that they created a rule, which limits the time that the person can talk in a debate, called the cloture rule.
• The cloture rule is enacted when it has received three-fifths of the Senators approval.
Whenever the bill is passed through Senate and also the House, the bill will be passed on to the Conference Committee.
• This committee is basically a group of people who takes both versions from the house and the senate. It irons out the differences so that the bill is an agreeable copy for both.
Finally, the President may…
• The President signs the bill, it becomes law.
• Veto, which is to override the decision by refusing to put his signature on the bill.
• Congress, however, may choose to override “that” veto with a two-thirds vote from both houses (This is how the Congress can defeat the President’s veto).
• If the president does not act on the bill, it becomes a law after 10 days.
• There is another type of veto which is called the pocket veto. This happens if the President ignores the bill that has been submitted within ten days before the adjournment of Congress, the measure dies.

Attention: Gov’t Classes

April 10, 2018

The Chapter 10 and 11 test will take place on…
Wednesday for period 3 and 5 and Thursday for period 2 and 4.

The test will cover…
Chapter 10, Section 1,2,3
Chapter 11, Section 1,2,3,4