Reflections on Jack London’s “The Iron Heel”

Economic History of the U.S. To 1900

When reading Jack London’s The Iron Heel, my high school days of music are brought to mind. I remember one of the more musically talented high school punk bands of the time: Picnic with a Gun. The singer/lyricist was a young man destined to be a politician. For reasons of stubbornness, over-certainty, and a strong belief in his propaganda, not too many people managed to win an argument against him (if they even bothered trying). One of his famous lyrics stated, “You say I’ve got a big mouth because I’m not afraid to use it.” He was a member of the upper middle class. He lived on the outskirts of Montecito. His parents were both lawyers. He was half-black and quick to bring up race distinctions. He believed that “socialism is the answer, and we’ve got to fight.” He was a fun person to listen to, and he came to mind when reading of Avis Everhard’s accounts of Jack London’s Socialist hero, Ernest Everhard. Their life histories are different, however, with Everhard having come from a poor beginning. But their target audience, a relatively homogenized, educated middle class, and their economic story of class struggles and socialist uprisings, were very similar.

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Sustainable Development and Economic Growth: An Interplay on an Evolving Globalized Stage

Introduction

The goal of this paper is to present the reader with a brief background of the global experience with sustainable development in the past fifty years. Considering the broad range of issues involved with sustainable development, I decided to divide the paper into ten interconnected sections, each of which would be worthy of extensive analysis on its own.

I will begin by introducing the notion of sustainable development and introducing some of the questions that arise from with our ever-changing “new world order.” Following this will be a brief discussion of the first development experiences, which started as development assistance to help Europe recover following World War II. The success here provided confidence to expand assistance in other parts of the world. The third section covers the changes in the organization of society that provided the environment in which Western wealth and growth originated.

With this basic background of growth and development, I will then begin to present some of the more current issues concerning sustainable development. The fourth section addresses concerns that globalization will result in the extinction of individual cultures, with the world’s cultures ultimately being standardized. Section five is focused around knowledge inequalities and the technology gap between the developed countries and the developing ones. Multinational corporations are often accused of not contributing anything (in terms of such things as transferring management skills and technological knowledge) to the countries in which they operate. Section six briefly looks at these concerns. Inappropriate approaches towards growth also have severe consequences on the environment. A few of the environmental problems stemming from growth are the topics of section seven. Section eight raises questions about the measurement of the standard of living and discusses some recent ideas for improvement. This is followed by a short discussion of a fundamental question that should be asked when analyzing development experiments: does growth help the poor? With that question asked, I will end the paper with the convergence theory—that is, that the incomes of the late starters to growth converge quite rapidly with those of the leaders.

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Reflections on Frank Norris’s “The Octopus”

Economic History of the U.S. To 1900

Frank Norris’s, The Octopus, is a novel which, on its simplest level, is the story which in Norris’s own words, “deals with the war between the wheat grower and the railroad trust.” There is much more depth to this novel, however. Norris’s novel also addresses issues dealing with capitalist “forces” along with the notion of justice. Ideas of one’s free will—choices versus determinism—are also present as strong undercurrents in the book. The Octopus also deals with issues concerning the strength of the individual—or what one can alternatively look at as a call for collective action. These alternate levels of The Octopus will be the foci of this paper.

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Reflections on Michael Shaara’s “The Killer Angels”

Economic History of the U.S. To 1900

Michael Shaara’s The Killer Angels is illustrative of the fogginess that often accompanies warfare. The novel covers the very brief period of June 30th, 1863 through July 3rd, 1863. It is a story of the Battle of Gettysburg, three years into the Civil War. The Killer Angels is also a story that at times questions what the Civil War was about.

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Reflections on Harriet Beecher Stowe’s “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”

Economic History of the U.S. To 1900

Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin looks at slavery from the perspective of a Christian lady, and addresses the question of whether Christianity and slavery can coexist in a society we would like to call moral and humane. The question is a part of a larger one, one that is commonly referred to as “the problem of evil.” Stowe poses another question about the society of which she writes, and that is whether we are racially superior and whether this is any justification of acts of conquest. These questions will be discussed in brief in this paper, using specific character descriptions to help support the discussion.

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The Ancient Maya of Belize: A Review and Summary

The Ancient Maya

Dr. Anabel Ford’s The Ancient Maya of Belize: Their Society and Sites manages to successfully accomplish at least two things for an individual interested in Maya studies. First, it provides the reader with some useful background information on the Maya civilization and their sites, allowing for a more comprehensive contextual understanding of what one may observe as a visitor to the Maya region. Second, it presents the reader with slightly more detailed descriptions of 18 of the more major sites they may be interested in visiting in Belize. As such, this small booklet can be quite a useful addition to the backpack of a traveler wishing to observe the ancient Maya civilization.

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The Size of the World

Regulation of Economic Activity

I am a king in a time long ago. I have heard rumors that the earth is round. I feel that it is in my interest to find out whether or not this rumor has any truth, and I understand that great progress is often achieved when trying to learn with an open mind. As such, I have summoned my wizards and set upon them two tasks. The first is to find out what the shape of the earth is. The second is to estimate the size of the earth. Here is what they found.

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Vietnam’s Economy: Poverty and Prospects

Amy Mowl | Pham Phung | Darcelle Pruitt | Ananda Mahto
China/Vietnam | Study Abroad 1999

Foreword

In the 25 years since the American government withdrew financial and military support from the former South Vietnamese State the unified government of Vietnam has worked to recover from the destructive impacts of the war. In 1975 the Vietnamese government inherited a country on the verge of economic collapse. Through the progressive steps of central planning, agricultural reform, state owned enterprises, the economic restructuring of doi moi, and the steps taken toward opening up to global trade, Vietnam has sought a path to provide stability for its people.  Through a stable national policy, Vietnam hopes to create a harmonious national environment, equity within society, ensure social welfare, alleviate poverty, and balance citizen’s rights with their responsibilities.

In this paper we will address Vietnam’s economy after the war, the restructuring of the economy under doi moi, foreign policy implications, and the successes and failures of the Vietnamese government and foreign aid donors in achieving domestic policy goals.  In section one we will discuss in detail the situation after the war, the initial economic plans, and the beginning steps toward decentralized economic planning.  In section two we will introduce Doi Moi, discuss Vietnam’s hesitance to enter the free market economy, and look at some achievements of Doi Moi.  Section three will address Vietnam’s foreign economic policy, the benefits of foreign investment in Vietnam , the drawbacks for foreign investors, Vietnam’s trade imbalance, and the U.S. economic embargo.  In section four we will examine Vietnam’s domestic policy priorities using the education and health care systems to analyze the implementation of domestic policies, examine the overall effect Doi Moi has had in attaining public goals, and look at foreign aid donors as participants in reaching domestic policy goals.  Finally, in section five we will summarize our findings and make policy recommendations intended to further the economic and social development goals of Vietnam.

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The Things I Saw

Cultural Norms

Early in the morning of September 5th, 1999, I was saying goodbye to my mother and my co-worker at the Santa Barbara Airport. A short while later, I was in San Francisco, waiting with thirty other students, to leave for Asia. We had arrived at the airport quite early, but soon enough, we were on a plane to South Korea.

We got to South Korea on the evening of the sixth. We made our way through customs fairly efficiently, then made our way outside. It was warm, but drizzling. During the bus ride to the YMCA Hotel that we were going to stay at, I got a sense of how large Seoul was. There were many huge sky-rises with packed apartments. They were all inhabited, but they often seemed to take on the appearance of neglect. This turned out to be one of the most obvious observations throughout China, South Korea (Seoul at least), and what I have seen of Vietnam.

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Comparative World Religions Final Exam

Questions:

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