Monday, January 9, 2012

Political Cartoon #5 Week of 1/9

1. How does this relate to what we discussed in class? What is pork?
2. Do you think Santorum is the only candidate to say things to please lobbyists?
3. How do lobbyists connect to pork?
4. What is this cartoon saying about Santorum? Do you think the author supports him?

Issue of the Week 1/5- Child Support Answers

 Who monitors child support?
      In each case, there is a judge who monitors child support payments. Behind the judge, there are also boards and commissions. 

How are the guidelines for each individual situation decided upon?
       "The guideline shall be based upon the reasonable needs of the child or spouse seeking support and the ability of the obligor to provide support. In determining the reasonable needs of the child or spouse seeking support and the ability of the obligor to provide support, the guideline shall place primary emphasis on the net incomes and earning capacities of the parties, with allowable deviations for unusual needs, extraordinary expenses and other factors, such as the parties' assets, as warrant special attention. The guideline so developed shall be reviewed at least once every four years."\

What is child support like in other countries?
       Every member of the United Nations has child support laws similar to ours based off of the 1992 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Can there ever be a change of circumstances?

      Yes, so very four years the situation is reassessed by the judge.\

What if a parent does not pay their child support? Are there any consequences?

      If a parent does not pay, child support offices enforce the following consequenes:

  • Driver's license suspension
  • Credit bureau reporting
  • Occupational license suspension
  • Passport denial
  • Tax refund intercept
  • contempt of court

        Saturday, January 7, 2012

        Left, Right, Center- Third Parties

        10-12 facts, details, opinions, and questions

        1. What would be the benefits of a third political party?
        2. The majority of Americans do not feel they relate to either the Democrats or the Republicans. 
        3. Our two political parties seem to be controlled by business and public finance. 
        4. If the third party is owned by billionaires, then we really aren't getting anything new.
        5. What kind of party would be formed?
        6. Political parties tend to break down.
        7. Americans feel the economic crisis is not being taken seriously by either of the two parties, which is why a third voice might be necessary. 
        8. What is the role of class in all of this?
        9. 58% of Americans oppose War in Afghanistan.
        10. 50%-60% support public healthcare. 
        11. Most Democrats fear that a third political party would be a disadvantage for their party and for Obama in the 2012 election.
        12. The only way to have a stable democracy is to move people out of poverty into the middle class. 
        13. Why do we need to define ourselves by political parties?

        Thursday, January 5, 2012

        Political Party Research: Refrom Party

        Reform Party: facts and details learned

        1. They want to pass laws with significant penalties, not rules.
        2. They want to eliminate the practice of keeping some programs off-budget.
        3. They want to give the President Line Item Veto.
        4. They want to stop government from raiding public trust funds.
        5. The Reform Party supports fiscal responsibility and accountability.
        6. The Reform Party supports fair taxation policies without prejudice or special interest exceptions.
        7. The Reform Party supports affordable and accessible healthcare based on informed decisions between doctor and patient.
        8. The Reform Party supports safeguarding our nation’s natural resources balanced with the need for economic development.
        9. The Reform Party takes NO STANCE as an organization on issues such as pro-life/pro-choice and gay marriage.
        10.  Each state is part of a Region, which has its own representative on the Reform Party Executive Committee.
        11. Andre Nigel Barnett is a member of the Reform party who is running in the 2012 Presidential election.
        12. The Reform Party supports energy independence from foreign sources.
        13. The Reform Party supports policies and programs that best guarantee the security of our national borders, the safety of our citizens and the economic interests of our country.
        14. The Reform Party supports equal access to and accountability for education.
        15. Congress should not get free meals and unfair access to luxaries.

        20 Truths About American Political System

        Truths about our political system and whether they appear to be positive, negative, or neutral aspects.

        1. The US Constitution, which lays the foundation for our country, appears to be a very stable document. (+)
        2. We use a separation of powers system. (+)
        3. Presidents are not elected directly by voters, but by the Electoral College. (-)
        4. Each chamber of Congress has certain exclusive powers. (+)
        5. Each of the nine Supreme Court Justices carries an equal weight. (+)
        6. Members of Congress are less constrained by party affiliation and freer to act individually. (+)
        7. In the US, religion is a factor in politics in a way unique in western democracies. (-)
        8. Most incumbents win re-election. (0)
        9. Popular sovereignty- the source of governmental power lies with the people. So, people are able to dissolve the government if they feel it is not representing them fairly. (+)
        10. The government must follow its own laws and it can only act using powers given to it by the people. (+)
        11. The government is increasingly responsive to special interest groups, not the public interest. (-)
        12. Citizens have the responsibility to understand and support the government, participate in elections, pay taxes, and perform military service. (+)
        13. American government is free from any official religious affiliation. (+)
        14. There are state and local governments. (+)
        15. Freedom of speech (+)
        16.  Third parties have less political influence in the United States than in other developed country democracies. (0)
        17. The federal government has been created by the states. (+)
        18.  Americans vote for a specific candidate instead of directly selecting a particular political party. (+)
        19. Supreme court cannot initiate a bill or law. (0)
        20. Media plays a huge role in politics. It is sometimes considered the fourth branch of government. (0)

        Tuesday, January 3, 2012

        Political Cartoon #4 Week of 1/3

        1. How do you think the author feels about the Iowa Caucus?
        2. Does this cartoon take an optimistic, pessimistic, or seemingly neutral view of the presidential campaign process?
        3. Do you think there is a better way to go about selecting presidential candidates?

        Monday, January 2, 2012

        Issue of the Week 1/5- Child Support

        Questions and thoughts on the issue of child support:

        1.  Who monitors child support?
        2. How are the guidelines for each individual situation decided upon?
        3. What is child support like in other countries?
        4. Can there ever be a change of circumstances?
        5. What if a parent does not pay their child support? Are there any consequences?