Walkerteach Econ
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Walkerteach Econ
An online classroom resource for Mr. Walker's AP Economics class.
Curated by Luke Walker
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Krugman's Economics for AP* -- FREE STUDENT RESOURCES

Krugman's Economics for AP* -- FREE STUDENT RESOURCES | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
Luke Walker's insight:

Go to this link to access FREE and OPEN RESOURCES related to our course textbook.

*Note* There are some materials on this website that cannot be accessed without authorization, however a great deal is just FREE!

You can browse by chapter, review with flashcards, surf to related web links, you can even register to take online self-test quizzes!

I highly recommend you check this out. Remember, practice makes better! 

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Capitalism: A Love Story (Youtube).

Luke Walker's insight:

The film is presented in its entirety in English with non-English subtitles. I didn't post it to youtube, I'm merely passing it along for those of you that are curious about the film and its topic.


Enjoy. 

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Michigan takes over Detroit in "Olympics" of restructuring

Michigan takes over Detroit in "Olympics" of restructuring | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
DETROIT (Reuters) - Michigan Governor Rick Snyder on Thursday announced a state takeover of Detroit's finances and appointed as manager a corporate bankruptcy expert who took a can-do attitude toward turning...
Luke Walker's insight:

"More than a third of Detroit residents are officially classified as living in poverty, and it has an unemployment rate of 18.2 percent, far above the U.S. jobless rate of 7.7 percent, according to government figures." (Think Macro everyone).

This article is very telling of the economic crisis that exists in parts of the United States. Detroit is poised for a restructuring takeover as it has declared bankruptcy, making it the largest municipality in the U.S. to do so. 

This decision lays out a certain type of future that Detroit residents may come to expect in the months ahead. For a good idea of what changes might be made, and what the future holds for Detroit we only need to go a few miles over to Pontiac, MI now in its 4th year of bankrupctcy restructuring:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/14/us/lessons-for-detroit-in-pontiacs-years-of-emergency-oversight.html?pagewanted=all 

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Historical Inflation Rates: 1914-2013, Annual and Monthly Tables - US Inflation Calculator

The table of historical inflation rates displays monthly and annual rates from 1914-2013. Rates of inflation are calculated using the Current Consumer Price Index published monthly by the Bureau of ...
Luke Walker's insight:

Still curious about US Inflation rates? GOSH I KNOW I AM!

Then click on over to the US Inflation Calculator. Here you can find a great resource for one of the major indicators of US economic performance. Compare it to what you have learned about intervals of unemployment, recession and expansion and major historical events such as the Great Depression, wars, etc.

neat stuff. 

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Viral Video Shows the Extent of U.S. Wealth Inequality

Viral Video Shows the Extent of U.S. Wealth Inequality | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
The matter of wealth inequality in the United States is well known, but this video shows you the extent of that inequality in dramatic and graphic fashion.
Luke Walker's insight:

An eye opening representation of the inquality of wealth distribution in America. Think back to your Lorenze curve. According to what you see here in this video, what would that banana look like?

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Luke Walker's comment, March 3, 2013 7:40 PM
I think the most eye opening part of this was the comment on investment. Half of the country is incapable of investing as a result of their lower status in wealth distribution. Think about the larger impact upon the US macroeconomy as a result of this.
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Daily Show: Merge Overkill

Daily Show: Merge Overkill | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
Merger mania infects Wall Street.
Luke Walker's insight:

The latest trend on Wall street is the merging of large corporations. But what does this mean for the consumer, competition in the market place, and the role of government should problems arise?


Think back to your microecon concepts (market firm structures and failures of the market). 

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sourcemap.com -- Snickers Bar

sourcemap.com -- Snickers Bar | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
Luke Walker's insight:

Ever wonder how the global supply chain works? Check out this website to see how the global economy works. This gives some insight into where the various parts of global market products come from and where they are manufactured. The only piece of this that isn't shown is where they shipped off to be sold.

This particular sourcemap shows off where snickers bars come from.

Interesting to think about the global market, the power of globalization, and international trade. 

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Can vegans stomach the unpalatable truth about quinoa?

Can vegans stomach the unpalatable truth about quinoa? | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
Joanna Blythman: Ethical consumers should be aware poor Bolivians can no longer afford their staple grain, due to western demand raising prices
Luke Walker's insight:

Supply and demand analysis raises an ugly truth about a popular health food grain.

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CZiogas's comment, February 26, 2013 10:34 AM
Thanks! Nice article for IB kids too!
Suggested by Jason Tsai
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Google 搜尋 http://jspivey.wikispaces.com/file/view/ipod-monopoly.jpg/75706817/ipod-monopoly.jpg 圖片的結果

Google 搜尋 http://jspivey.wikispaces.com/file/view/ipod-monopoly.jpg/75706817/ipod-monopoly.jpg 圖片的結果 | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

The cartoon clearly demontrates the hypocritical side of Apple Industry. Years before when Apple was a small company, it cried out that Microsoft was acting as a monopoly and limiting growth in other companies. However, when Apple gained more market shares, even greater than Microsoft today, it turned its head and sought to retain its dominance by filing copy-right law suits on companies like Samsung and HTC. Naturally, companies would want to be the dominant firm so that it can control its profit. But Apple's usage of its "bat" to strike its opponents are not always beneficial to the market and this is when government regulations need to step in. 

Luke Walker's insight:

It's a great example how technology can create a barrier to entry as well.

Nice find Jason. 

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Suggested by Gloria Sheu
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Negative Externalities

Gloria Sheu 11A
I find his videos VERY helpful--especially this one. In this video, Paj Holden brings out several "positive-externality" scenarios. He uses many examples; he mentioned a student going to college as an graduate rather than just a undergraduate. By getting a better job, he/she would be paying more taxes, which would bring in more revenue for the government, and finally, this would bring in more everyday facilities. Another example Paj Holden brought out is healthcare and vaccines. When a person gets a vaccine, he/she recieved such a treatment to increase PRIVATE benefits. In a sense, this would be an external social benefit, because it would lower the possibility of getting sick even if the "third-party" had not recieved vaccinations. He emphasized,however, that although these positive externalities are beneficial, these mark a significant kind of market failiure. There simply isn't enough of the goods/ services to match the market provided output. To put into simpler terms, the society wants more, but not enough is produced to match that demand.

 

Luke Walker's insight:

Nice find Gloria.

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Suggested by Michelle Li
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The Middle Ground

The Middle Ground | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

Like many other Calvin and Hobbes comic strips, this one also contains deeper meaning that may be interpreted. In this case, it seems that Calvin could be making a reference to how the market system works when he describes the possibilities of the imminent wild sleigh ride. With enough skills, Calvin could jump over the ravine and avoid death, such as that the only firms that have the skills to be efficient and innovate constantly can survive in today's competitive industries. These invaluable abilities are what keeps firms up and going, having a good time, instead of crashing and burning, going bankrupt. The harsh differences that Calvin suggested connect to the huge successes and failures that are determined by the choices of a firm (entrepreneurship included). Good decisions lead to great rewards from the market, while bad ones are dealt crippling and sometimes lethal consequences. These “punishments” require aid for the firms to even dream of living, which can be further connected to government bailouts that were given to many U.S. banks that made horrible decisions to make profits for themselves (hence, “intravenous liquids”). However, luck also plays a big hand in the playing field of the market. In the end, there are still middle grounds as Calvin later admits to Hobbes, and it may be the zero economic profits earned by most theoretical firms we've mentioned in class, enabling them to continue production, not too much or too little (not very exciting for a wild child like Calvin who probably wants to control a monopoly which would yield him a lucrative return). All in all, Calvin’s sleigh ride can be associated to the ways the market systems work.

Luke Walker's insight:

Undeniably this is a very abstract approach to understanding microenomics, but in some regards your analysis works.

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min_wage_copy.jpg (450x411 pixels)

min_wage_copy.jpg (450x411 pixels) | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

This cartoon argues for both sides regarding minimum wage. The business owner is shown as going broke because he is required to pay his workers a higher minimum wage while the worker is broke as well because the minimum wage that is supposedly increased is still no enough for him to get by. Not a biased cartoon because it backs up both the liberal and conservative views. Thus, it really gets one thinking, will increasing minimum wage really help the workers or the corporate owners? The economic problem should be solved from the source. Perhaps too much outsourcing or the lack of decent education could be possible problems to tackle instead of just raising the minimum wage. 

Luke Walker's insight:

Good work Dillon.

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Suggested by Eric Sun
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Minimum wage and its impact on the job market

Minimum wage and its impact on the job market | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

This comic portrays how raising the minimum wage would raise the bar for getting work. The rungs on the ladder marked "Job Market" shows how one may climb up and obtain higher paying jobs, however, as this comic argues, raising the minimum wage would make it harder to land a job; having a price/wage floor increases quantity while decreasing demand, and in the end resulting in less jobs availiable overall and more people competing. The "Dems" are shown patting the teen's back, as if doing them a large favor, but in actuality, the teen now gazes longingly at the missing rungs, facing a slimmer chance at actually getting work, now that the higher minimum wage has been established.

Luke Walker's insight:

Nice find Eric.

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Money Boo Boo - The Canadian Banking System

Money Boo Boo - The Canadian Banking System | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
Jason Jones compares American and Canadian banks.
Luke Walker's insight:

1) What's the connection between government regulation and economic prosperity?
2) Why do free-market minded economists/bankers disagree with Canada's practices?
3) Is John Tobacco the worst human being in the world? 

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Daily Show: Jon Stewart discusses the subject of Glass-Steagall Act and the failure to return to it (July 2012)

Daily Show: Jon Stewart discusses the subject of Glass-Steagall Act and the failure to return to it (July 2012) | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
Citigroup's Sandy Weill calls for a return to the same Glass-Steagall Act he helped repeal in 1999.
Luke Walker's insight:

Keep in mind, this is a comedy show. Spoiler alert colorful language is used in the jokes.

That being said this is relevant to our class discussion of Glass-Steagall, the recent economic recession, and shady banking practices that are reminescent of those used during the under-regulated roaring 1920s. 

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Friends of the Earth: Community: Tools: Measuring progress: Make your own ISEW

Welcome to Friends of the Earth's Index of Sustainable Economic Welfare pages
Luke Walker's insight:

So you say that GDP has its drawbacks. That it doesn't take into account externalities, or the fact that it approves of nasty divorce litigation over stable marriages. Well here's your chance to do better.

 

Ever wanted to design your own welfare index based on things that you deem important in society and the macroeconomy?

Have at it! 

 

 

note this was referenced in your anderson reading as part of your first HW packet.

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Daily Show: Merge Overkill - Greeb Is Good

Daily Show: Merge Overkill - Greeb Is Good | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
John Hodgman lauds corporate pioneers in the field of strategic over-largeness.
Luke Walker's insight:

A continuation of the previous clip regarding corporate mergers.

Keep in mind this show is all about satire, however there are some nuggets of truth beneath the jokes.

For those of you who have never seen the film Wall Street, Mr Hodgman is referencing a very infamous speech made by the character Gordon Gekko. The speech is about the merits of greed, the character is delivering the speech to a company's shareholder meeting in an effort to convince the shareholders to give him a controlling percentage in the company. In essence he wants to monopolize the company and sell it off for a personal profit. He does this by convincing the other shareholders in the room that greed for profits, achieved through a sole decision-making shareholder, is better than the current perfectly competitive amount of shareholders. The film takes place in the height of the 1980s when mergers among corporations were happening quite a lot, often resulting in a negative impact for the consumer.

The full speech from Wall Street can be seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PF_iorX_MAw

Anyways Stewart and Hodgman do a great job poking fun at how the recent trend is to merge for the sake of greed, without much concern for what it will mean for the American consumer and worker. Remember, mergers = less competition!

The too big to fail is a reference to a question of, what happens if these companies become too large and bankrupt in the future (it happened to the American auto and banking industries). Will tax payers have to bail them out through government intervention?

Enough, enjoy the clip. 

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Daily Show: Exclusive - Steven Brill Extended Interview Pt. 1

Daily Show: Exclusive - Steven Brill Extended Interview Pt. 1 | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it
Steven Brill investigates the origins of high medical bills.
Luke Walker's insight:

This interview deals with some very approachable economic topics. Ranging from basic concepts of choice and incentives (or the lack thereof), to consumer spending, the role of government regulation, failures within the market place and the macroeconomy.


If you have read Steven Brill's insightful look at the virtually unregulated medical costs that exist within the United States health care system then stop right now and have a look. The article is 26,000 words (over 30 pages when printed in Time magazine), but it's worth a read.

http://healthland.time.com/2013/02/20/bitter-pill-why-medical-bills-are-killing-us/


Jon Stewart's comparison of his reading experience to Chuck Yeager breaking the sound barrier (visibly shaking) is spot on.
 

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China's demand for cotton is helping give the global market for the commodity a boost

China's demand for cotton is helping give the global market for the commodity a boost | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

Via Seth Dixon
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Lauren Jacquez's curator insight, February 16, 2013 7:35 PM

Higher prices HUGGERS?

 

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 9:45 PM

If Chinese aren't producing cotton and Chinese aren't in a need for cotton what can go wrong? Investors can have something to do with that. The investors need to bet on the highest global cotton prices in order for them to get their supply. Since cotton prices are raising through the roof, China has been producing cotton like crazy.

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Freakonomics » The Absurdity of U.S. Air Travel: Baggage Fees

Freakonomics » The Absurdity of U.S. Air Travel: Baggage Fees | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

Many people have probably experienced the whole troublesome process of getting a simple luggage from the airport onto the plane. There must be reason for this whole time-consuming cycle, right? Yes, in fact there is a really important reason as to why tons of people have to face this dreaded ordeal every single day. If we look at this suggested article, we can see that baggage fees make up almost one half of the whole US Airline profit. Now that is a huge amount of money right there. Companies literally earn money off people's suffering.And as we all know, every decision comes a potential alternative decision, and through merely making a choice, people are forced to suffer consequences, the opportunity costs. So bying having US Airlines earn money off the luggage process, people will incur the opportunity costs that accompany that decision. That being said, the horrendous process of loading luggages is also for other causes such as customer safety. Employees weigh the bags to make sure the plane would be able to bear all the weight mid-air. Employees also put the luggages through metal detectors so that harmful things will be removed before the luggages enter the plane. So as a conclusion, even though companies are profiting off people by making them go through a troublesome process, people do indeed benefit through increased on-plane safety.

Luke Walker's insight:

Opportunity cost in the sky. Nice find Johnny.

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Suggested by Vivian Wen
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Minimum Wage

Minimum Wage | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

I chose this cartoon because it shows a clear message of the minimum wage issue in the US. The interviewee was hoping that she could maybe atleast earn some decent amount of income that can payoff living expenses. However, it's said that the only requirement for this job is to have the ability to live without money(meaning earning minimum wage). This cartoon delivers a message of how firms doesn't even consider their workers' skills but only if they're are willing to accept income at minimum wage. I think if the government don't increase minimum wage, not only is this going to bring the workers near poverty line, the distance between the rich and the poor is going to get larger. But on the other hand, it's most likely that if government increase wages, the requirement for jobs are going to increase too. This will ultimately cause a mass amount of unemployment to the US. 

Luke Walker's insight:

Nice find Vivian.

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Suggested by Viviana Cheng
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Stuck in Poverty

Stuck in Poverty | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

A monopsony can hire a large amount of workers and has the ability to manipulate them. In this cartoon, the man on normal ground represents the monopsony power or any large firm that has power over their workers. Workers working at minimum wage can't pull themselves out of poverty because they are already struggling to live with the little amount of money they earn, so if they stop working, they won't be able to support themselves at all. In this case, the worker in the cartoon is literally "stuck in poverty". Even with his boss(?) yelling at him to keep working in order to get out, workers like him are immobile in the market because they are trapped at the bottom of poverty with a minimum wage job as their least and only source of living.

Luke Walker's insight:

Nice find Viviana.

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Suggested by Timothy Yang
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Infographic: Straight Talk on Outsourcing

Infographic: Straight Talk on Outsourcing | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

This infographic is pretty interesting and might be helpful to better understanding outsourcing. It discusses the history of outsourcing and how it has changed over time, as well as several outsourcing models used. It also takes an interesting stand regarding the economic impact of outsourcing and proposes an unusually optimistic view regarding outsourcing, saying that it affects "0.2% of employed Americans." I am not sure if that 0.2% includes people who have already lost their jobs. Anyways, it also discusses the markets affected the most strongly by outsourcing, which was nice to know.

Luke Walker's insight:

A very objective look at outsourcing. Thank you Tim for finding this. It is important to realize that the job market is not a static entity, i.e. moving jobs overseas won't element all possible jobs, new jobs are created.

The grain of salt to take with that statement is, what jobs are being moved? Who is affected by outsourcing? If you look close enough it impacts certain segments of society, the question then becomes a matter of larger social questions about access (ability to get a new job, pay for new education/training, mobility, etc.), the role of government, and market failures. 

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Suggested by Annie Chang
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49.jpg (540x675 pixels)

49.jpg (540x675 pixels) | Walkerteach Econ | Scoop.it

The political cartoon depicts a scene where an employee thought he would be going to Mexico for his job but instead it is his job that has been outsourced to Mexico. It perfectly conveys the struggle of employment in the US. Many avaliable jobs or even old jobs are being taken away, thus, leaving the people unemployeed. Companies like this one try to maximize their profits by outsourcing to foreign countries where the minimum wage is lower. In the short run, the government would try to support those who are unemployeed by creating more jobs. However, could it be possible that these jobs may be outsourced in the far future? (Creating a never ending cycle.)

 

The article relates to some discussions on outsourcing we had.

Luke Walker's insight:

Nice find Annie.

Can you post a link to the article in the comments to this post? 

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