Monthly Archives: October 2009

Swine Flu, a National Emergency?

President Barack Obama declared the swine flu outbreak a national emergency, giving his health chief the power to let hospitals move emergency rooms offsite to speed treatment and protect noninfected patients. (10/24/09 ABC News, Philip Elliott) … Read Article

1. Discuss the specific purpose of the presidential emergency declaration.

2. “The national emergency declaration was the second of two steps needed to give Sebelius extraordinary powers during a crisis.” According to the article, what was the first step taken to grant the Secretary of Health and Human Services power to act during a crisis?


What’s AARP’s Stand on Health Care Reform?

AARP, which has lost tens of thousands of members over its support for efforts to revamp the health care system has embarked on a new campaign aimed to retain members worried about cuts to their Medicare benefits.(9/2/09 ABC News, Mimi Hall) … Read Article

1. Who is Ted Campbell? Why is AARP trying to retain him as a member?

2. Discuss the content of AARP’s new national campaign.

Colleges Prep for Swine Flu

Colleges across the country have stepped up efforts to combat the swine flu as the first few weeks of classes brought outbreaks to some campuses, and a few deaths. (9/15/09 ABC News on campus, Matthew Nojiri) … Read Article

1. What did Emory university do to protect its student population from  swine flu?

2. Discuss the specific role the Syracuse university mascot will play in the school’s effort to combat the swine flu.

America’s 10 Poorest Cities

From the South to the West, these are the places where people are the poorest. (10/19/09 ABC News, Joshua Zumbrun) … Read Article

1. What, according to Mike Perez, accounts for the pocket of poverty in the metropolitan statical areas?

2. What is responsible for the emerging poverty in the industrial Midwest?

(Video) – President Obama Says Health Care Reform Cannot Wait

The President calls on Congress to seize this opportunity one that may not come again for decades and finally pass health care reform: Its about every family unable to keep up with soaring out of pocket costs and premiums rising three times faster than wages. (7/18/09 The White House)

1. Discuss what President Obama say is the argument of the opponents of health care reform.

2. Discuss some of the benefits of health care reform according to President Obama.

(Video) – Republican Response to President Obama’s Speech on Health Care Reform

Dr. Charles Boustany (R-LA), representing the Republicans, responds to President Obama’s speech to a Joint Session of Congress on September 9(9/9/09 ABC

1. What are the four areas of agreement mentioned by Dr. Boustany?

2. Discuss the areas of disagreement between the Republicans and Democrats, according to Dr. Boustany.

Polisci Students’ Opinion on Obama’s Nobel Peace Award

In one of our recent polls we asked MPSL students if President Obama deserves the Nobel Peace Prize. The result: 43% of the students believe he deserves the award; 47% said no; while 10 said they don’t know. In a related nation-wide poll by Gallup, the President’s job approval rating increased to 56% in the days following the Nobel Prize, from 50% a week before and 53% three days before the award. For the full poll result visit  Results were retrieved on 10/18/09, 8:00 PM PST.

Some critics believe that President Obama does not deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. What do you think?