Sunday, August 28, 2011

What Role Should the Government Play?

With Irene sweeping up the East Coast, we all watch in amazement and awe at Nature's fury and wish well to all those caught in the storm. However, who is responsible for the cleanup? Is it any of our problem that there are people left without homes? Should the federal government assist in victims of natural disasters? The same example applies in our state: should Californians receive federal aid after an earthquake hits? In these times of budget deficits, should the federal government help earthquake, hurricane and wild fire victims?

What do you say about those who chose not to purchase natural disaster insurance? Do we have an obligation to assist those who suffered through these disasters? If so, how much help do they deserve or need? Who should decide?

Essentially, what role should the government play? What would Marx and Smith say? Would you pay more in taxes to help these people? Or would you be willing to cut other government programs to offset the help?

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Downtown Arena for the Kings?

As many of you know the Sacramento Kings almost left for Southern California this spring. The Kings' ownership is seeking a new downtown arena and when the Sacramento City Council failed to provide a plan for one, the team seemed destined for Anaheim. The Maloof's pulled the plug on the move at the last minute claiming that they will keep the team in Sacramento one more year but promise to move next year if a new arena deal is not in the works. The city of Anaheim has already approved a $75 million bond to provide the Kings with a new home. The Anaheim City Council claims that corporate backing and revenues from the Honda Center will pay for the bond and that no city tax dollars will be spent on the deal. However, what will happen if corporate backers fail to develop or revenues from the arena fall short of expectations?

Sacramento has some interesting questions to answer. How much city tax dollars should be used to fund a new arena? Would a new downtown arena provide enough tax dollars and new jobs to cover the costs? Should governments be in the business of enticing sports teams to move to their cities and provide tax incentives to do so? A new 70-member commission named "Here We Build" will release a report in September outlining the feasibility of a new downtown arena.

  1. Should Sacramento try to keep the Kings with a new downtown arena?
  2. Should tax dollars be used for the new arena?
  3. In general, do cities and states benefit from having sports franchises and, if so, what should they do to keep them?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Your Next Choice (Post #2)

Within the next couple of months you will be making some critical decisions. Do you want to attend college? If so, why? Can you afford it? Does the military appeal to you? Why? How about finding a job? As you see below, the more college you complete, the greater earning potential.

But as you can see, the cost of college is increasing rapidly.

Soaring College Tuitions

The military offers some incentives for you to join.

What are the trade-offs and opportunity costs of these decisions? Which one makes the most sense for you? Why? Our in-class debate on Friday will deal with this topic.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Welcome Back to School Class of 2012!

Take this opportunity to tell us what your plans are for your senior year. What are your academic and extra-curricular goal? Do you plan on getting a job? What do you see yourself doing in one year? College? Military?

Also, don't forget to brag about your summer plans the past couple of months. What exciting adventures did you participate in?