Page 1

Review the horace mann

Domestic - International - Features - Economics - Science & Technology

We the People

A Democratic Shift




Review The Horace Mann

A Journal of Opinion on Current Events, Politics, and Social Issues

Rebecca Segall Editor-in-Chief

Andre Manuel Mathieu Rolfo

Creative Executive Editor

Seth Arar Andrew Stier

Senior Production Supervisor

Alexander Daniel Emily Feldstein

Editorial Executive Editor HazaristanTimes

Changing the Democratic Formula

Our national identity will always be tied to the idea of democracy. Good vs. evil; democracy vs. the repressive and dictatorial forces in the world. Right now, though, the meaning of democracy is being redefined in real time. Around the world, our generation is challenging the idea of statehood, self-determination, and the role of the will of the people in the democratic system. This issue of The Review explores the changes our writers are witnessing in the relationship between a government and its people. The birth of the Republic of South Sudan this summer represents a turning point in our understanding of self-determination and national identity; now we anxiously wait to see how the future of the Sudanese people will unfold. Palestine’s bid for statehood and controversy over Israeli settlements in the West Bank also force us to question how representative government is organized. In may cases, political change on a national level comes from the bottom up, originating in the beliefs of the governed and not the government. Civil dissent in India and this summer’s riots in Britain, both topics explored in this issue, represent two ends of the spectrum of a people’s expression of injustice. Perhaps due to the efforts of activists and advocates around the world, we have become more aware of and sensitive to human and civil


rights law around the world. Democratic reform in China and Myanmar also comprise our Features section on the dynamic of statehood and political expression. At the end of our school’s subway line, in Zuccotti Park, another powerful message of dissent is gaining traction. One writer in this issue explores the significance of the Occupy Wall Street movement, reminding us that our own democratic process is a work in progress. In examining the way that governments around the world respond to the expression of their people, we come closer to defining our own ideals of freedom and civil discourse. Striving to understand global and domestic issues in order to challenge and define our own views is what we believe makes journalism powerful. The Review is open to all writers who wish to explore any current issue that makes them think. We are very excited to bring you Issue 2 and to continue to explore the events that are shaping our world. Sincerely,

Harrison Manin

Senior Editor - Domestic

Zoe Rubin

Senior Editor - International

Dorin Azerad

Senior Editor - Features

Jordan Berman

Senior Editor - Economics

Katherine Wyatt

Senior Editor - Science & Technology

Aramael Pena-Alcantara Jessica Bernheim Production Consultant

Senior Contributor

Spencer Cohen Benjamin Davidoff Treshauxn Dennis-Brown Daniel Elkind Maurice Farber Jacob Gladysz-Morawski Nicholas McCombe Stephen Paduano Alexander Posner Nathan Raab Elizabeth Rosenblatt Charles Scherr Junior Editor

Philip Perl Ryan Thier David Zask

Junior Contributor

Max Bernstein Harold Chen Vivianna Lin Samantha Rahmin Associate Editor

Gregory Donadio Faculty Advisor

Rebecca Segall Editor-in-Chief Volume XXI

The Horace Mann Review is a member of the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, the American Scholastic Press Association, and the National Scholastic Press Association. Opinions expressed in articles or illustrations are not necessarily those of the Editorial Board or of the Horace Mann School. Please contact The Review for information at

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


Domestic Bullying: A Closer Look

David Shapiro


Obama’s Fate

Neil Ahlawat


The GOP Flavor of the Month

Ryan Thier


Republicans Versus Democrats Can 9-9-9 Really Work?

Sahej Suri Kieran Birch-Desai

10 12

Sidestepping Progress

William Ellison


Coming Home

Jacob Haberman


A Victory for Women; A Triumph for Freedom

Vivianna Lin


A Turn for the Worst

Henry Luo


Libya’s Future in Doubt

Jay Rappaport



The Arab Spring & the Rise of Anti-Americanism Benjamin Greene


Features The March of Progress

Nathan Tillinghast-Raby


It’s Their Country

Jonathan Slifkin


London Riots

Radha-Priya Itwaru



Isaiah Newman


Hunger is the Way

Caroline Kuritzkes


A New Nation at Last

Jenny Heon


The Prospect of Settlement

Laszlo Herwitz


Voodoo Economics

Daniel Elkind


A New Look at Aid in Africa

David Hackel


The IMF: On the Brink of Collapse

Lauren Futter


Economics The Human Side of Economics: An HM Alumna’s Perspective


Science and Technology An Addiction to Instantaneous Information

Hannah Davidoff


Apple’s Next Big Bite

Matthew Harp


The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2






The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


A Closer Look


david shapiro

ecently in the media there has been increasing discussion on the issue of bullying in America. CNN’s Anderson Cooper conducted a special on his show titled “Bullying, It Stops Here,” while President Obama and First Lady Michelle held a bullying Conference in March. Our own school recently held back-to-back assemblies surrounding the subject of bullying, namely the Diversity and Gay-Straight Alliance assemblies. As bullying receives increased national attention, what should our own community be doing to decrease its burden on our student body? Bullying may seem like a trivial issue at Horace Mann, where there is rarely a physical confrontation between students. However across the nation, bullying statistics are daunting if not overwhelming. According to the National Education Association (NEA), 130,000 students stay home every day because of bullying, and 20% of all high school students have seriously considered suicide within the last twelve months. Known bullies are also six times more likely than the average student to be imprisoned by the time they reach age 24, and five times more likely The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

to have a criminal record. However, there is also some good news. When bullying programs are introduced, bullying is reduced by an average of 50%, according to Olweus, an organization that works to prevent bullying in schools. Schools with bullying programs tend to also be more drug free, and report higher grades on state exams. President Obama has encouraged the implementation of such programs throughout the country, and one day every public school in the nation may use a bullying prevention program. But while the nation takes a closer look at bullying in public schools, has our own community done enough to create a safe environment? Many view Horace Mann and other preparatory schools as very safe environments. However, teasing and hurtful words can take its toll among our own student body. We must consider the fact that because there is little-to-no physical confrontation at our school, there is bound to be some verbal bullying. National attention is just as high in terms of verbal abuse. According to the NEA and, verbal bullying and cyber bullying (verbal abuse over the internet) are cited more times as the cause of bully-related suicides than

physical bullying. The U.S. clearly treats verbal abuse just as seriously as physical abuse. This is seen in the fact that Olweus’ suggested bullying program is split into physical discussion as well as verbal discussion, highlighting that they are equally important. The long-term affects of verbal abuse are also gloomy. The NEA says that verbal bullying can lead to depression, health issues, and in rare cases multiple personality disorder. With these grim statistics, our school should look toward not only increasing awareness related to the long-term affects of verbal abuse, but also to take direct action, such as meetings about it in advisories. Assemblies that a good percentage of the student body ignores, and another good percent sleep through, are not effective means to stop verbal bullying. Direct and thorough action must be taken to lessen bullying’s toll on out students. As the nation steps back and takes an in depth look at bullying, maybe it’s time we at Horace Mann looked at bullying as a whole, and took direct action to reduce the burden it puts on our students in future years. HMR Sources: NYTimes/CBS, USA Today/Gallup, Associated Press/GfK Roper




neil ahlawat

Obama’s Fate

he 2012 election will ultimately come down to a contest between President Obama, and the future Republican nominee, Mitt Romney. The battle for the Republican nomination will be extremely contentious. Despite a crowded field, there are only three viable Republican candidates: Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, and Herman Cain, with Romney as the current favorite. If Romney is able to carry the favor of the base of the GOP, he will win. Let’s begin with Herman Cain, the CEO of “Godfathers Pizza.” While he was a long shot to win when he entered the race, he is now a Tea Party favorite and could possibly win the Republican primary. Cain is an inspirational and motivational speaker who grew up in the South, with his father working as a janitor, barber and chauffer, and his mother as a domestic worker. Through his hard work and work ethic, Cain was able to establish himself from the ground up and become a self-made man. Despite his life story and his oratory abilities, Cain has


struggled to create specific foreign and domestic policies. He famously blundered when asked about Palestinian statehood, and was slammed in the media when he said he wasn’t “comfortable” with having a person of Muslim faith in his Cabinet. Cain’s domestic policies are highlighted by his “9-9-9” tax plan. This means a 9% flat income tax, 9% corporate tax, and 9% national sales tax. The plan is as appealing as it is simple; it closes tax loopholes, and it eliminates the IRS. But critics say that this will end up hurting the middle class, who will have to pay more than what they pay now under the current tax code, and that it will not address the long-term federal budget deficit. Some experts say that under Cain’s plan, 85% of Americans’ taxes will increase. Lower income families will be hurt, as this plan eliminates Earned Income Tax Credits. However, top earners will potentially benefit, according to some economic experts. The second viable GOP candidate is the Texan Rick Perry, who entered the race as a front-runner, but lost early support soon after his weak showings in the

primary debates. His actions have wiped out his front-runner status and dropped him to third position in the polls. However, do not discount Perry entirely, as he has support of social conservatives, preformed more strongly in the last debate, and is still raking in campaign money. He recently proposed a bold idea for scrapping the current tax code and replacing it with a 20% flat tax in order to win back conservative support, as part of his ‘Cut, Balance and Grow’ plan. The advantage of a flat tax is in its simplicity; thousands of IRS pages and loopholes will be eliminated. However, since it’s “flat”, everybody will pay the same percentage of tax. Although this idea will not be popular, time will tell if Perry will regain his frontrunner status; so far he has lost his “mojo”, and it is clearly showing in the polls. The clear favorite to win the Republican nomination is former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. He is definitely the strongest candidate in the primary, with his experienced fundraising ability, proven track record in Massachusetts, and experience in the private sector. He The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Domestic has more than enough campaign money, and is the one Republican candidate who has the potential to earn a victory against Obama. Romney is a moderate Republican, which means he will get most, if not all, votes of independents, but the conservative base of the GOP is unlikely to give him its full support. Many independent voters are not happy with the job Obama has done in office, and many dissatisfied Democrats unconcerned with party loyalty will most likely vote for the moderate republican, Romney. As it stands right now, the unemployment rate is just over 9%, with the President’s disapproval rating hovering well under 50%. Americans are disappointed and frustrated with the job Obama has done in office. With a lousy economy and a soaring disapproval rating, Obama’s best weapon in the 2012 election is the Republicans themselves. Each Republican candidate appeals to a different “sector” of the Republican Party; Romney tends to lean moderate, losing the base, while Perry holds the base of the party, and Cain the support of the Tea Party and far-right conservatives. If Obama is lucky, the Republican voters will not come out to vote for the Republican nominee because

election. Rick Perry, the other conservative of the pack, doesn’t have the base of the GOP anymore; he lost it. It seems like Perry had already hit his ceiling right when he entered the race. There was just too much excitement around his entrance. Perry lost his groove after mediocre performances in debates, and controversies revived by his opponents, which resulted in a dramatic fall in the polls. Now the odds of winning the republican nomination for Perry are much lower. If Mitt Romney wins the nomination, we would have a whole different story. Unlike the other candidates, Romney is much more moderate, and would easily be able to win over the majority of independents, moderate republicans, and maybe even democrats; Obama’s support has waned among blue collar voters. Also, the youth vote, key for Obama’s 08 campaign, may not turnout because of his fading “Yes, we can” message. Not it sounds more like “No, we did not” looking at the current state of the economy. The Republican base doesn’t appear thrilled with Romney, but their voting turnout could prove decisive for him. It really could go either way. The election is a year away (a life-time in politics);

for Obama, it will be a very low turnout for Democrats, who would have neither Romney nor Obama. Obama can’t run on his “Change” message anymore; there was no change with him in office for the last four years. Count that as a win for Romney and a tough loss for Obama, with Obama going home and Romney heading to the Oval Office. HMR

“Obama’s best weapon is the Republicans themselves.” of the disparity between their views. On the flip side, if the Republican nominee is able to bring out the base of the party and unite the GOP with a message essentially saying that any Republican would be better than President Obama—something all Republicans agree on—they may have a large turnout, much like the Bush campaign of 2004. Obama has a clear path back to another four years in office if either Perry or Cain is the Republican nominee. Honestly, Herman Cain appeals only to Conservatives. His passionate and motivating speeches do not make up for his radical ideas, such as “9-9-9,” or his lack of knowledge on the complexities of foreign or domestic policy. Herman Cain would be thrashed and dismissed by Obama. Cain is at his peak now, a year before the The Horace Mann Review | Issue 12

Obama still has a year either to improve or to continue downhill, and Romney to either lose his front-runner status or pave a path towards the Oval Office. So we are basically looking at a Romney-Obama 2012 election showdown. The rest of the Republican candidates are just too weak, and Romney should come out victorious in the primaries. Obama should be anxious when it comes down to Election Day, because this time Romney is the man to beat. Romney will have to run on an anti-Obama campaign, to unite the GOP—not just those moderates, but the base too. With Obama’s approval rating so low, and the economy in the midst of a double dip recession, I can’t see how much better the climate will get when fall comes next year. Democrat voters simply aren’t going to go out and vote



The GOP Flavor of the Month

T ryan thier



m r edd


port .com


pot. com




lant ic



pot. com

he only constant factor within the GOP primary, thus far, has been its inconsistency. The primary’s outlook has changed radically almost every month. The culture of inconsistency and the constant anointment of an inexperienced, unqualified, but “celebrity” name as the savior of the party plagues the Republicans. The GOP will never be satisfied or content with one of their


“flash in the pan sensations,” and until the Republicans abandon that culture they will never find the right candidate. What do Michelle Bachmann, Sarah Palin, Donald Trump, Rick Perry and Chris Christie all have in common? They have all been the popular

names and proclaimed the saviors of the Republican Party at some point. They also have something else in common: they are not in first or second place in the Republican Primary polls. Bachman and Perry both got swept up in the hype and have now joined the fray, while, Palin, Trump and Christie were smart enough to see through all the hype and make the right decision to stay out of the race. If the struggles of Bachmann and Perry are not enough to definitively prove that a Presidential campaign needs to be fueled by more than just hype, and that running as the

refreshing, outof-nowhere candidate who can “save the Republican Party” is a fool’s errand, then one need only look at Fred Thompson’s candidacy. The 2008 Republican primary was a race without a star candidate. Rudy Giuliani was doing well in the polls but was not very popular with the base of the Republican Party; Mitt Romney had strong showings in many straw polls but was hard to swallow for conservatives; and John McCain lagged in the polls. With a large portion of Republicans unsatisfied with the field of candidates, there was a big vacuum for a Republican Party savior to come riding in on his or her white horse. Fred Thompson was convinced to join the race and was immediately declared the frontrunner and GOP savior. Despite joining the race late, Thompson as Dan Balz of The Washington Post said, “[Thompson] was still seen as a potentially big figure – a new Reagan! –about to shake up the Republican race.”

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Domestic Robert Novak, also of The Washington Post, added that Thompson had “vaulted from nowhere into the top tier of Republican candidates without running an ad, spending a dime or giving a speech.” However, the excitement did not last, and Thompson’s campaign turned out to be a huge disappointment. He ended up winning only 9 delegates in the primaries and never came in better than third in any caucus or primary. The hype did not last. The hype never lasts. It did not last for Fred Thompson, it has not lasted for Rick Perry, and it wouldn’t have lasted for Chris Christie. If the Fred Thompson experience in 2008 did not make it clear enough that declaring an unknown ‘flavor of the month’ candidate as the savior is not an effective strategy, then just watch as Rick Perry slides further and further in the polls. Chris Christie was right to stay out; if he had entered late (like many called for him to do) he would have enjoyed the same fate as Thompson did in 2008. It is really fun to pick a new, chic candidate and anoint him or her as the party’s savior. It is nice to think that there

is always a hero lying in the weeds, ready to burst onto the scene and save the day right when you need him or her. However, that person rarely, if ever, actually exists. The Republicans’ constant reaching out to outsiders and celebrities is just desperation. They just throw the sexiest, coolest, and most well-known names they can on the wall, heap hyperbolic praise upon them and hope something (someone) sticks. It’s an incredibly irrational system. The reason these ‘flavor of the month’ candidates are not viable and won’t be able to beat Obama is because their simplicity is fool’s gold. Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 tax plan is a perfect example of the simplification of issues by the GOP. America’s economic woes and tax structure are two incredibly complicated topics and are without simple, easy solutions. If the economy were easy to fix, it would have been fixed a long time ago. Cain’s overly simplistic 9-9-9 plan, which he concocted during a long flight, is not the type of plan America needs. The 9-99 plan epitomizes the problem with these ‘flavor of the month’ Republican Candi-

dates: they all claim to have a simple, rudimentary solution to fix America’s most sophisticated, complex problems. The reality, however, is that there are no easy answers to the hard questions. There isn’t always a perfect candidate just waiting in the wings, ready to save the day. So, fun as it may be, anointing heroes left and right is not conducive to actually winning elections. While Mitt Romney isn’t a fun or ‘popular’ name, he is the most rational and plausible candidate with the best chance to beat Obama. He has his flaws, but he’s experienced and has a history of political success. Republicans actually hold the fact that we know Romney is good against him. Because we know Romney is formidable, we also know that he’s not perfect. And the Republicans prefer to look at unproven candidates and speculate how amazing they might be (even though they haven’t actually done anything) rather than accept Romney for the solid candidate he is. If the Republicans are serious about winning in 2012, they need to grow up and stop searching for a savior and get behind their most viable candidate, Romney. HMR

Daniel Elkind ‘13 The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2




the people have been taxed excessively and that the U.S. government needs to continuously cut down on spending. With these movements, Republicans and Democrats have pointed fingers as to whose fault the economic recession was, and which party should be held accountable for bailing out the corporations. While on the surface it may seem as if the Democrats were the ones who advocated for the 2009 stimulus package, aside from groups such as the Tea Party, Republicans also supported it, including GOP presidential candidates Mitt Romney, Herman Cain, and Rick Perry.

A group antagonistic toward the stimulus package was the Tea Party. The movement was revived recently after hostility broke out amongst the American people; while many citizens fervently supported having corporations bailed out in order to retain their jobs, others began to question whether it was fair that their hard-earned money should be spent to cover up mistakes that big business made. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, the stimulus package increased employment from 1.4 to 3.3 million. However, disregarding this reality, both parties turned against each






he Republican and Democratic parties have taken political shots at each other at the cost of the American people, leading to not only a divided Congress, but also a people taking unprecedented national action. This action has been exhibited through movements such as Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party. Occupy Wall Street is a protest to big corporations that have failed, that with the American people’s tax dollars, have been bailed out by Congress. The Tea Party formed as a radical faction of the Republican Party under the basis that


The Tea Party Movement the current major political parties, those of the Republicans and Democrats to get back to their agendas. As the demands of the Tea Party reconstructed the Republican Party, Occupy Wall Street will perhaps transform the Democratic Party. Republicans were slow in 2008; they did not effectively utilize social media to focus in on the key, young demographic. They were seen as sluggish and in some regards hypocritical, because minutes after consequential debates or speeches, their opposition could quickly send out a Tweet of statistics or even bills introduced in Congress that refuted the claims made. Instead of dropping the


party and creating a new party entirely, the Tea Party called for more action and reform within the Republican Party. This included the norm that each member of Congress should maintain an active Facebook page, Twitter account, and websites to demonstrate the change they are making and the action that they are currently taking. While many of their constituents are using social networking as a form of keeping up with recent news about friends and family, candidates and members of Congress can be added to a more personal level of constituents when they are active on their News Feeds. According to a recent study by the New York Times,

“House Republican members have more than twice as many followers as their Democratic counterparts — about 1.3 million versus roughly 600,000 — and are far more active on Twitter with more than 157,000 individual Twitter messages, versus roughly 62,000 for Democrats.” Another change that occurred after the revival of the Tea Party was the addition of diversity- whether it is racial, ethnic, or religious. Florida Senator Marco Rubio and Congressman Allen West had received support amongst minority groups. Instead of the white, Christian, male image of the Republican Party, the addition of diverse groups were gained by the Tea The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI









Ve rs


other because the economy did not fully al debt that continues to rise. According and online discussions they repeatedly recover and the national debt increased to Marc Fisher of the Washington Post, share many of the same frustrations, as tremendously. We are currently in anoth- “They [The Tea Party and Occupy Wall well as a classically American passion er recession that has left Americans frus- Street] start out with different views about for fixing the system.” The reality, howtrated. As a result, the Occupy Wall Street the role of government, but in interviews ever, is that Occupy Wall Street remains protests have spread to a bottom-up movement cities across the counto which not much sup“House Republican members have more than twice try. This raises the quesport and funding has as many followers as their Democratic counterparts tion as to what the main been given. On the con— about 1.3 million versus roughly 600,00 — and are differences are between trary, the Tea Party was far more active on Twitter with more than 157,000 the Tea Party and Occuwell strategized using py Wall Street, as both individual Twitter messages, versus roughly 62,000 for various media outlets parties were formed in to advance its agenda. Democrats.” retaliation to economic Both movements are slowdowns and nationlooking to revitalize

Party. All of this positive change for the Republican Party was due in part to the criticism of the Tea Party, and it seems as if Occupy Wall Street will do the same for Democrats. According to a Time Magazine survey, 86% of Americans believe that Wall Street has too much influence in Washington. In the same poll, 79% of people believed that the gap between the rich and poor has grown to such a considerable extent that it should be reduced. Expect the Democrats to go in the direction of stressing the importance of the middle class, which can include more tax cuts. However, they will have to broaden The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

Occupy Wall Street their outlook to be more conservative in that they will have to cut spending and compromise with Republicans. What is clear is that Democrats have been winning the battle of foreign policy with their recent victories. It will be tough for Republicans to criticize Obama for being weak or an ineffective leader because of the military achievements he has made. It will be interesting to see how the Democrats and protestors reach an agreement; however, only time can tell. George Washington, in his Farewell Address to the nation, stated that political parties should not get in the way of the interests of the people. Through cer-

tain actions that he took while president, Washington intended to maintain a government that was democratic and not anarchic. He stressed that there is a fine line for the nation to be productive, and we must continue on that path. Whether there is a change in leadership, or the current party garners more support, it is clear that the addition of political movements has caused bumps in the road for both Democrats and Republicans. The race to end, however, is characterized by whoever can adapt to this new and unknown environment better. HMR



Can 9-9-9 Really Work?


kieran birch-desai

erman Cain, former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza and long time businessman, has garnered wide respect for being a “problem solver.” His straightforward, no-frills 9-99 plan to save the American economy, which includes a 9% sales tax, a 9% corporate tax, and a 9% federal income tax, catapulted him to the lead of the Republican race. His persistent and almost comical repetition of “9-9-9” in response to every question on the economy seemed to convince right-leaning voters as to its plausibility. Now that the plan’s initial catchiness has worn off, a meticulous examination of what the plan actually entails reveals that it is, in fact, an oversimplified proposal to fix a massive and decidedly complex economy that has been slowly infected over years. Whether people want to


believe it or not, the economical disaster is so global and widespread that there is no singular “fix” that can be implemented successfully in one presidential term. To begin with, Cain’s plan has drawn extensive criticism from both parties because it includes the idea of “expanding

“According to Roberton Williams of the Urban Institute, Americans with an income over $1 million pay an average of 18% federal income tax. Under the 9-9-9 plan, their rate would be halved.” the base” – a euphemism for an increase in taxes on the already struggling, vastly underemployed lower class and a substantial decrease in taxes for the wealthy. A tax system which breaks the backs of

lower class will be just as inefficient as one that taxes the wealthy to an extent where there is little incentive to create jobs and start businesses. Currently, 47% of Americans do not pay federal income tax. Under Cain’s plan, those nearly 150 million people will have a 9% tax increase. In addition, Cain’s 9% sales tax severely affects the lower class, since most of their income is put towards purchases rather than savings. Conversely, the upper class would be rewarded with an elimination of estate taxes and capital gains taxes. According to Roberton Williams of the Urban Institute, Americans with an income over $1 million pay an average of 18% federal income tax. Under the 9-9-9 plan, their rate would be halved. With these precedents, can it really be said that this is a “fair” tax plan? Besides forcing the lower class to The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Domestic shoulder more of the tax burden, Cain’s plan has one blaring omission, aptly pointed out by fellow Republican Candidate Michelle Bachmann in one of the Republican debates. Due to the nature of his standard 9% corporate tax, companies do not get a tax exemption from the wages paid to employees. This has two major implications for the economy. For one, it discourages the hiring of new workers, which is the last thing that the U.S. needs at time when there is a 9% national unemployment rate. Secondly, it in effect creates a Value Added Tax (VAT) similar to that in Europe, paid for by the consumer, due to the fact that companies must pay 9% in sales tax at every step of production of the item. What we now see is a tax increase for the majority of Americans due to a 9% sales tax, 9% VAT, and 9% income tax. The final overarching question we must consider is whether this new tax code will provide the funds necessary to

return the US to solvency, irrespective of its fairness. Rough estimates from the Washington Times and the University of New Mexico’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research determine that Cain’s plan would generate around $1.8 trillion, or $360 billion less than what it taken in currently. So vague and open-ended is this policy that the application of a few minor assumptions about the economy leads to a wide discrepancy between revenue estimates. For example, the Center for American Progress, a think tank dedicated to “developing new policy ideas… to 21st century challenges” estimated that the business-related portion of Cain’s plan would only raise $112 billion (in comparison to the $862 billion he claims it would raise). In an attempt to ameliorate what is clearly an unfair tax system, Cain has identified “empowerment zones” (areas where a significant amount of the population is below the poverty line) that can

be revived through corporate tax credits. Giving companies tax credits in these areas should induce them to hire more employees. Adhere to Cain’s insistence that you go to his website and learn his plan for yourself, and you will find that areas will be designated “empowerment zones” if and only if there is an elimination of minimum wage and unions. While optimistic, it is highly unlikely that the liberal government that tends to pervade such areas would allow the implementation of such conservative laws. On a more national scale, it seems highly implausible that the entire tax code of the U.S. could be scrapped, rewritten, and passed within one presidential term. Putting the pieces together, we have a proposal that taxes the population unfairly, that brings into question its ability to raise adequate revenue, and that is overly optimistic in a huge piece of legislature in one presidential term. HMR

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2






he Palestinian Authority’s attempt to declare unilateral statehood at the United Nations demonstrates once again that Israel does not have a partner for peace; indeed, it proves that the Palestinians do not accept the Israeli and American hope for a Jewish State and a Palestinian state living side by side in peace and security, an outcome that can only be achieved through direct negotiations. Instead, it should show the world that Palestine is looking to do what it has always done: erode Israel’s right to exist to the point that one day, Israel will not exist at all. It would seem confusing to the casual observer why a two-state solution has been so difficult to achieve, considering it has been the public international consensus for a long time. In fact, the two-state solution was first formally proposed by UN Resolution 181 in 1947, which moved to divide the British Mandate into sideby-side Jewish and Arab states. However, the Arab world rejected such a proposal and chose instead to invade and attempt to destroy Israel. Since 1947, the essential element for ending the conflict has not been acknowledging the necessity of two states for two peoples, but rather the Palestinians’ finally recognizing the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish State. By declaring statehood at the UN, Palestine is attempting to circumvent this obligation. Although at first glance it may seem


william ellison

as though the Palestinian bid for statehood at the UN is an attempt to shift the democratic process from the international level into the hands of the people of Palestine themselves, in reality the move is a problematic attempt to sidestep democratic bilateral negotiations. As a result, it will lead only to more frustration and violence. Why? Only negotiations - not UN resolutions - can create real nations as per customary international law; unilateral statehood, however, implies an end to negotiations. The Palestinians are effectively ending the peace negotiation process that has been going on for decades by trying to create a state by declaration that does not exist in reality - they are claiming that their state exists without acknowledging their obligations to the international community that come with it, including their obligation to respect Israel’s right to exist. They are rejecting everything the Israelis and Americans have been trying to accomplish through mutual compromise. Thus, the unilateral UN declaration attempt is nothing more than a public relations ploy by the Palestinians to try and force this issue onto the world stage with the aid of the world media rather than actually negotiating with the Israelis. This is also an underhanded tactic to force countries to take sides and to pressure countries to prematurely establish actual diplomatic relations with Palestinine. After all, the UN does not have the power

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

International International Why Palestine’s unilateral United Nations bid for statehood is a step backward for peace in the Middle East - and will mean more fighting between Israelis and Palestinians.

to create states. Thus, there is no reason other than publicity - to press the issue in the UN, instead of the productive forum of negotiations. The Palestinian Authority turned to the General Assembly to seek a unilateral declaration of statehood since the US indicated it would veto any effort to do so in the UN Security Council. The Palestinians automatically have a majority in the UN General Assembly as a result of the Arab League (22 members), the Islamic Conference (56 members) and the NonAligned Movement (118 members). So, basically, no matter what the Palestinians suggest, they will have a majority of support from the UN because of these voting blocs. It is the responsibility of the UN and the international community to reject the attempted UDI (unilateral declaration of independence) because the UDI is rejecting Israeli-Palestinian agreements and UN mechanisms for creating peace. A critical United Nations resolution in 1967 revealed the necessity of negotiations. UN Security Council Resolution 242--which is widely accepted as the basis for Israeli-Palestinian peace within the international community--stated that the Israelis and Palestinians will try to bring forth peace through land-for-peace negotiations. Direct negotiation is the agreed upon method for peace, not underhanded unilateral moves in the UN General Assembly. Moreover, endorsement of

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 12

Palestine in the UN would show UN support for the terrorist organization Hamas, which controls the Palestinian government in Gaza. Hamas is a genocidal terrorist group committed to eliminating the State of Israel and the Jewish people. Furthermore, the UDI’s passage wouldn’t even help the Palestinian people themselves. There is a great danger that if a Palestinian state is declared in the UN, the situation on the ground will dangerously deteriorate--although the Palestinians would initially be overjoyed over their new status, that attitude would quickly turn to anger that the reality of conflict would not change. This anger would likely lead to unrest and create a great danger of violence. The forces of democracy unleashed by the “Arab Spring” should be channeled constructively, not destructively to inflame the situation on the ground. The chaos that would ensue would probably turn the Palestinian state into another, larger and more threatening Gaza. Gaza is controlled by Hamas, which regularly launches rockets into Israel and deploys terrorists to kill and terrorize Israelis in order to meet their aim of destroying Israel. Hamas terrorists in Gaza regularly use innocent Palestinian civilians as human shields in order to try to convince the world that Israel is at fault when Israel’s attacks on Hamas militant targets (responding to Hamas attacks on Israeli civilians) tragically, accidentally

sometimes kill Palestinian civilians. Perhaps, if the Palestinians wish to seek recognition by the international community, they should terminate their alliance with Hamas, which is recognized by the United States, the EU, and others as a terrorist organization. Or are the Palestinians just trying to make a state that would be a larger and more accepted Gaza, which would turn into a terrorist base like Gaza did? Most Americans and Israelis back the establishment of a peaceful Palestinian state that coexists with Israel, but not a state that would turn into another Gaza, controlled by Hamas. The Arab Spring has encouraged the Palestinians’ attempt at unilaterally declaring statehood. However, if statehood is accomplished in this way, it will exacerbate the situation in the Middle East and potentially lead to more violence in this volatile part of the world. By going to the UN, the Palestinians are trying to create a state without resolving the main issues to achieve a two-state solution: borders, security arrangements, Jerusalem, refugees, and settlements. The Israeli people and government support the creation of a Palestinian state and recognize that there will need to be difficult negotiations and sacrifices on both sides. The Palestinians have repeatedly rejected negotiations and compromise. Four consecutive Israeli Prime Ministers – Ehud Barak, Ariel Sharon, Ehud Olmert, and Benjamin Netanyahu – have presented



an antisemetic agenda the security council has passed

0 resolutions critizing china, which is known to imprison peaceful dissidents

0 resolutions critizing russia, which throws critics of the government in jail

0 resolutions criticizing nigeria, which,

according to the state department, has a history of

“serious human rights abuses”

7 resolutions criticizing north korea, which has pursued an agressive course of nuclear proliferation and mistreated its own citizens

18 resolutions criticizing sudan, which actively encourages racially based terrorism and turns a blind eye to the resulting rape and murder


233 resolutions critizing israel,

which has done nothing but respond to attacks from those who want to land of all jews.”


“cleanse the

compromises to reach a negotiated two state solution, but every effort they made has been rejected. The Palestinians have had many chances over the course of over 60 years to have their own sovereign nation; however, time after time they reject even the most generous Israeli compromises. Historical facts provide an essential context to the current situation. In 1947, the UN General Assembly recommended separating the British mandate into two separate states, one Jewish and the other Arab in Resolution 181, because both Jewish and Arab people had been living in the British Mandate. While the Jews accepted this offer, the Arabs rejected it. A day after the British Mandate of Palestine ended on May 13, 1948, David Ben Gurion decreed the establishment of the State of Israel, while the Arabs did not attempt to make their own state even though the UN encouraged them to do so. Instead, immediately after the declaration of the State of Israel, surrounding Arab countries (including Jordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Yemen) attacked Israel for the purpose of destroying Israel and spreading Islam, while the Palestinians, who were actually just the Arabs living in the former British Mandate, as they did not really name themselves “Palestinians” until the 1960s with the establishment of the PLO, decided to stand back and not even try to make a state of their own, instead hoping their Arab allies would wipe Israel from the face of the Earth. After Israel miraculously won this bloody war, it was recognized as a state by leading members of the international community, including the US and Russia, and in 1949 Israel became a member of the United Nations. Israel has always wanted peace more than anything, even at the cost of relinquishing land that it acquired for justified strategic reasons when attacked again by Arabs in the 1956 Sinai War, 1967 SixDay War, and 1973 Yom Kippur War. Israel withdrew from the Sinai Peninsula in 1979 in order to achieve peace with its violent neighbor Egypt, even though the Egyptians had started the attacks that ended up in Israel’s possession of the Sinai. In order to further the peace process, in the 1990s, Israelis withdrew from Palestinian population centers, despite the

incessant terrorism of the Palestinians. In 2000, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and U.S. President Bill Clinton presented the Palestinians with a very generous two-state plan. The Palestinians rejected it without even offering an alternate plan. Very soon after, in the Second Intifada, unjustified Palestinian terrorism towards Israeli civilians increased. In 2005, also in order to further the peace process, the Israeli government completely withdrew from the Gaza Strip in southwestern Israel, forcing many Israelis to leave their homes and move elsewhere, so that the Palestinians could have the opportunity to create an autonomous state in Gaza. This proved futile, as Gaza soon turned into a terrorist base controlled by Hamas for launching attacks against Israel. In 2008, Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert offered an even more generous offer with another two-state plan, in which almost 100% of the West Bank was included in a would-be Palestinian state. The Palestinians again rejected it. Most recently, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suggested another munificent two-state solution, pausing Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank for a whole ten months in order to try to achieve progress, but the Palestinians still refused to negotiate and instead began to pursue their UN strategy. As Abba Eban, an Israeli diplomat said nearly 40 years ago, “The Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.” Currently, the Palestinians’ scheme for a one-sided declaration of statehood is under consideration in the UN, while attempts are being made by the “Quartet” (the USA, the UN, the EU and Russia) to restart direct negotiations. Israel has already accepted resuming negotiations without preconditions, while the Palestinians are holding out, maintaining that certain demands of theirs must be met before negotiations can resume. Hopefully, the impasse will be broken, negotiations can start, and peace can finally be achieved. Either way, it should be clear that peace will not come through universal declarations of statehood. HMR

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


COMING HOME The deal to free Gilad Shalit was heartwarming. But was it a good move for Israel?


jacob haberman

n 1985, in a maneuver widely con- tween 2000 and 2011. It seems perplex- tal is that Hamas—a group known for its sidered by politicians and histo- ing, at best, to risk the safety and security militant opposition to the Jewish state— rians to be a lethal blow against of the citizens of Israel so wantonly by has seen appreciable increases in supIsrael’s efforts to fight terrorism, releasing convicted murderers right back port from the Palestinian people. With the Israeli government agreed to into the general population. the continued support of its patrons Iran release 1,150 prisoners in exchange for Some in the media have claimed that and Saudi Arabia, which is likely, Hamas three Israeli commandos captured in Leb- the swap will strengthen Israel’s stance will use its newfound vigor to continue its anon by the Palestinian Militant Front. in the Middle East by increasing both violent attacks on innocent Israelis. One might have hoped that the Israeli the chances of peace between Israel and And finally, this swap sheds unwantgovernment would have learned from its Palestine and dialogue between Israel ed light on Israel’s policy towards terrorpast mistakes – but sadly, it ists. By freeing more than was not to be. On October 1,000 extremists in return 28, 2011, in a deal closely “Terrorists released by the Israeli govern- for one Israeli soldier, the paralleling the one made in government has made it 1985, Israel returned 1,027 ment in previous deals murdered over clear that the lives of their one hundred and eighty Israelis between convicted Hamas terrorists soldiers and citizens are of to Palestine, receiving one 2001 and 2011. It seems perplexing, at the utmost importance – Israeli soldier—named Gibut Islamic extremists are lad Shalit—in return. Shalit best, to risk the safety and security of sure to use this knowledge was seized in a cross border Israelis by releasing convicted murderers against Israel by using more raid by Hamas and other into the general population.” Israelis as leverage to spring Palestinian militant groups more killers from jail. Thus, in June 2006, when he was the safety of Israeli citizens 19; he has been held captive and the state of Israel is by Hamas without any contact with the and other Middle Eastern countries, but once again in jeopardy. As Yitzhak Navon outside world ever since. Although many those claims are just that: claims. Not a stated perfectly after the 1985 deal, we Israelis were overjoyed by the news of his single spokesperson from any Middle have shown “our enemies that for them release, the swap will prove to have been Eastern country has pointed to the Shalit the best deal is to kidnap soldiers and a bad move for Israel. deal as a step forward for peace. Palestin- citizens. We must have the strength to Israelis fear that the release of over ians, however, have pointed to the deal as tell the families of the captive soldiers -a thousand convicted terrorists threat- a step forward towards their end goal of there is a line that a nation cannot cross.” ens their continued well being, leading “cleansing the land of Jews, liberating JeFour hundred and fifty war prisoners many families of terror victims, as well as rusalem, and uniting Palestinian ranks.” were freed on October 18, 2011; in two some members of the Israeli government, Indeed, residents of Gaza crowded into months, the rest of the prisoners will be to object to the deal on those grounds. the streets in celebration of the exchange; released. Gilad Shalit, a hostage for more Their claim that the deal is “a great vic- at a public rally following the announce- than five years, has returned home to his tory for terrorism” is an accurate one: ment of the deal, Bahaa al-Madhoun, a family and native land. It is a triumph for terrorists the Israeli government freed in Hamas official in Gaza, proudly declared: the Shalit family, to be sure. Sadly, it is previous deals murdered 180 Israelis be- “Our resistance has won.” The sum to- less of one for the citizens of Israel. HMR The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2



A Victory for Women; A Triumph For Freedom


by vivianna lin

he choices for the recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize this year shocked the entire world, which had not seen a female laureate since 2004. The three recipients of the prize, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia, peace activist Leymah Gbowee, and democracy activist Tawakkol Karman of Yemen, were awarded “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.” This year, the Nobel Peace Prize was given as a symbol of female empowerment and the acknowledgement that woman need to have the same opportunities as men. The Peace Prize signals a step forward in bringing to light the achievements of women in promoting democracy and peace. Though sharing the same prize, the three women have contributed to society in vastly different ways. President Sirleaf is the first female president of Liberia,


becoming active in politics after Samuel Doe’s military coup in 1986. She became an outspoken critic of General Doe’s regime and after escaping persecution in the United States, won the election in 2005 to become president. One of her first acts as president was to establish the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which would investigate the decades of civil conflict in Liberia. President Sirleaf also oversaw the reduction of the country’s national debt, which had made Liberia eligible to participate in the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries initiative in 2008. By 2010, the country had reached the completion point of the initiative. President Sirleaf ’s story is atypical from the start; as an outspoken critic of her own country’s government, she went into exile and began work in America. She could have continued leading a comfortable life in America, but instead decided to return for the sake of her war-torn country. “My conviction is very strong…I find a way around the obstacles and try to

overcome them,” she said in an interview. President Sirleaf has helped the country put its worst behind it, but there are many more challenges for the country to overcome. There is record unemployment, record illiteracy, and a fragile infrastructure with little electricity - but Sirleaf has put Liberia on the road to fixing those problems. Sirleaf believes the greatest success is the change in outlook towards Liberia and a brighter future for the children. President Sirleaf ’s role in transforming the struggling nation and overseeing its healing is vital. Her strength as a leader and the care she has for her country is admirable. As one of the most powerful women in the world, President Sirleaf is a symbol of change, hope, and courage for men and women alike. The prize also illustrates that women, as well as men, are promoters of peace and social change. The achievements of women have been always been overshadowed and overlooked in this still male-dominated society, but the prize in and of itThe Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


This year’s Nobel Prize went to three African women - Ellen Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee, and Tawakkul Karman - for their work promoting equal rights and democracy in some of the poorest countries on Earth. What does that mean for the future of the Prize, and for the future of women’s rights? self signifies the acknowledgement of this fact. The women of Liberia lived destitute lives during the 15 years of civil war, and President Sirleaf is determined to include women in Liberia’s reconstruction. The message is clear; the women of the world are just as important in bringing about change, and according to Sirleaf, democracy must present equal opportunities in all aspects to women. Leymah Gbowee, President Sirleaf ’s fellow campaigner for women’s rights and peace activist, organized the non-violent Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace movement in 2003. The peace movement was responsible for bringing in end to the civil war that had ravaged Liberia for so long. Gbowee united the Christian and Muslim women of Monrovia to pray for peace and protest. The women forced President Charles Taylor to attend peace talks and were able to bring about a resolution. That Gbowee had the ability to orchestrate such an overhaul demonstrates just how large of a role women play in The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

peace activism. Though the thousands of nameless women who participated in the movement go uncredited. Gbowee acts as the face for female empowerment. The Nobel Peace Prize highlights the roles of two women who have changed a devastated country for the better. The third recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize was Tawakkol Karman of Yemen. She is an outspoken opponent of President Ali Abdullah Saleh who became an active leader in Arab Spring and inspired many to join the protests against their oppressors. Called “The Mother of the Revolution,” Karman is a contentious figure who has drawn criticism for her share in the prize - some claim that she is an Islamic extremists, or aids and abets the rise of Islamic extremism. In reality, however, Karman is quite moderate. In Karman’s case, the Prize is a symbol of hope for the future, and Arabs around the world applauded her reciept of the prize. Her selection as a laurate will have the largest impact of the three

recipients; it will force the world to reevaluate the definition of Islamists. Karman, who is a leading member of her country’s largest Islamist group, Islah, embodies Islam, activism, and feminism all at once. Perhaps this prize will be the catalyst to change people’s perception of Islamism and the Middle East - it shows that Islamists are capable of leading positive social change as much as anyone else. The Nobel Peace Prize awarded to these three influential women can be viewed as a catalyst that sparks change in perceptions; people who see Islam and women’s rights in the Middle East and Africa from afar often have a murky understanding of the true aspects, their eyes clouded by stereotypes and prejudice. This prize not only suggests a step forward in the recognition of women’s rights; it is the acknowledgement that we must make efforts to understand foreign cultures to advance international harmony. HMR




A Turn for the Worst

Iran’s Assination Plot Deconstructed

O henry luo

n October 11, 2011 FBI Director Robert Mueller and Attorney General Eric Holder announced a shocking piece of news: officials within the Iranian government were plotting to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the United States. In addition, bomb attacks were being planned on the Israeli and Saudi Arabian embassies in Washington DC. It has become increasingly evident that members of Iran’s government were directly involved in the plot, although the Iranian government has disputed these claims; a spokesman for Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called the claims a “fabrication.” However, Iran’s involvement in the scheme is a clear and blatant abuse of international diplomacy and etiquette. The order to assassinate


Al-Jubeir can be considered an act of war against both Saudi Arabia as well as the United States. Peter King, the Republican Chairman of House Homeland Security Committee, stated that the “flagrant and notorious plot was an act of war.” Various other politicians have expressed similar points of view. To retaliate and punish Iran, the U.S. is considering several possible courses of action, including military action, an oil blockade, and sanctions. However declaring war against Iran is not the right path to follow. Even though Iran’s actions are extremely troubling, the U.S. cannot afford to be so aggressive and attack Iran directly with the ongoing war in Afghanistan. Doing so would put countless lives at an unnecessary risk. From an economic standpoint, military intervention would be costly and something that


the U.S. cannot afford. The economy is already in a fragile state and with the U.S. deep in debt, spending money on an attack on Iraq would be foolish. The next possible way to retaliate would be an oil blockade. An oil blockade would essentially place an embargo on Iran’s oil. This would decrease the amount of trade done with Iran and subsequently decrease the amount of money Iran makes off of oil. 65% of Iran’s profits are from oil sales; an oil blockade would minimize the profits made by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, the branch of Iran’s military that was involved in the assassination plot. However, such a measure would threaten and weaken the international oil markets. Banning the sale of Iran’s oil could lead to a major increase in oil prices as the supply of oil to the U.S. would decrease substantially. At a time The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

International “If the US wishes to stop Iran from hatching further plots, it must be harsh and unforgiving.”

when the global economy is already unstable, an oil embargo would cause far too many problems and solve too few. The last possible course of action would be to impose sanctions on Iran by gathering international support. Sanctions would curb trade and isolate Iran financially, hopefully curtailing some of its more nefarious activity. Moreover, such measures would help to punish Iran in a manner that would not seriously damage the global economy. The U.S. has already imposed sanctions against Iranian airline Mahran Air; its U.S. assets have been frozen and the airline will lose a large piece of its business as the sanctions will restrict any U.S. businesses from interacting with the airline. The U.S. is planning further sanctions against Iran’s central bank, Bank Markazi. This could cause major issues in Iran, slowing down its economy to a significant extent. However, Obama must go through with his threats against Iran’s central bank. Iran has made its loyalties completely clear; it has engaged in terrorism with its plot to kill the Saudi Arabian ambassador. If the U.S. wishes to stop Iran from hatching further plots, the punishment must be harsh and unforgiving. The international community must understand that terrorism is not condoned and that any country that engages in such activity will be punished severely. Before the assassination plot was discovered, Iran was already labeled by the U.S. as a supporter of terrorism and a disturber of the peace because of its pursuit of nuclear weapons. The discovery of the plan to kill Adel Al-Jubeir and bomb various embassies reinforces what we already know: Iran is a threat to the safety of the United States and the Middle East. While some may urge a more aggressive course of action, our military is not the panacea to concerns about Iran. Instead the world should aim to limit Iran’s activities with sanctions on businesses integral to Iran’s economy. Perhaps Iran will finally cease to be a supporter of terrorism. HMR The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

How Can the U.S.


Military Intervention




Oil Embargo



Libya’s Future In Doubt Q

jay rappaport

addafi is dead and NATO has withdrawn from Libya. The Libyan rebels have taken the country into their own hands in a revolution based on the principles of democracy and equality. For the first time in over forty years, from the Sahara in its southern region to the shores of Tripoli, Libya rings with freedom. But now we must ask ourselves some hard questions. What will Libya’s future really look like? Can this rebel government sustain itself, especially after killing its former dictator so brutally? These are just the questions about Libyan politics: the effect of Libyan uprising and the death of Muhammar Qaddafi reach far beyond Libyan shores. How will they affect the 2012 elections? How will they shape the history of Obama’s first term? What will their impacts be on future multilateral military operations? And what will they do to the worldwide struggle for human rights and democracy? It will be


years before we know the answers to all these questions, but here’s a start. Firstly, we need to examine the effect of Libya’s uprising (and Qaddafi’s death) on Libya. The rebels have sought democratic and representative government, a common goal in revolutions throughout history. America’s Constitution was embedded in these principles. These are but principles, however; implementation and sustainability are big question marks in Libya’s future. Counter-intuitively, Quadaffi’s death may enlarge those question marks. Regardless of how Qaddafi was killed, which is unclear itself, the fact that the rebels killed him contradicts their message of democracy and personal freedom. To stick by their message, they should have given him a fair trial with a jury of his peers, which would have reaffirmed their commitment to justice and made the rebel government’s effective implementation of said justice seem plausible and probable. It also would have garnered

great international respect, and made a retaliation from any Qaddafi supporters seem unreasonable. Lastly, it would have provided much needed stabilization to a volatile Libya, as it would have established the ways the new judicial system would conduct itself, even when dealing with their most abhorred defendant. In a sense, Qaddafi’s killing was another state-sponsored killing, exactly what the rebels were fighting against and projects a future streaked with instability for Libya. Moreover, the world is unsure as to how Qaddafi was ultimately killed. The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is conducting an investigation to discover what happened between the two videos that have been released about Qaddafi’s final moments of life: the first video shows him severely injured, but alive, and the second shows him dead. Rupert Colville, a spokesman for the UNHRC, said in an interview about Qaddafi’s death that there had been many versions of how Qaddafi died, some reporting it was in The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

International combat and others saying it was an extrajudicial summary execution. Colville went on to say, “According to the laws of war, if someone’s killed in combat, that’s acceptable in most circumstances… But a summary execution is never legal. It’s like torture; it’s always illegal.” So now the international community, which had supported the rebel uprising from the start and provided the means necessary for its success, may actually need to turn against them if the rebels committed an act illegal under international law. The international community’s souring would be a huge blow to the new Libyan government or to any government for that matter in the current age of international aid and intervention. Libya’s future is not all bleak, though. A growing democratic nation will almost always find assistance and make a place for itself in this world, as long as the United States, Great Britain, and France are permanent members of the Security Council – and the Libyans are clearly making progress on their own as well. Effective October 31st, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution to end the mandate for the military intervention in Libya. Libyan Deputy Ambassador, Ibrahim Dabbashi, said that while Libyans were grateful for the international community’s intervention and aid, they were anticipating the end of the NATO occupation and that they felt the mission had begun to appear to infringe on Libyan sovereignty. Libyan rejection of NATO troops says that the Libyans are ready to begin the long and arduous process of maintaining peace and security on their own. But the events in Libya also hit much closer to home, as American domestic politics will also be touched by this rebellion in North Africa. First and foremost, the success of the rebellion represents a great foreign policy victory for President Obama. It followed his political philosophy on foreign policy, articulated in his book The Audacity of Hope, in that it was multilateral and facilitated an already occurring uprising rather than imposing a new one. The American intervention was quick and there were few troops on the ground, which bodes well for current public opinion on Obama’s term as The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

commander-in-chief. But how well the new Libyan government fairs in the long term will dictate how history’s paint dries on Obama’s 2009-2013 term in office. Obama’s tests in Libya are not over: as the dust settles on the revolution, he will be tested to see how he deals with reconstruction, an issue that plagued George W. Bush’s White House. Moreover, as the 2012 presidential race heats up, everything Obama does from now until next November will be under scrutiny from his Republican opponents. Despite the fact that, as a New York Times article title put it, “In G.O.P. Race, Foreign Policy is Mainly a Footnote,” and that the majority of their presidential debates thus far have revolved around economic plans, Republicans have classically accused Democrats as not being tough enough foreign policy. Therefore Obama’s popular and successful track record in international affairs,

What will Libya’s future really look like? Can this rebel government sustain itself especially after killing its former dictator so brutally? based both upon the actions he took in Libya and his killings of Osama bin Laden and other high level al-Qaeda members, might prove a stumbling block for the Republican candidate for President. Libya will also have a profound effect on the international community at large. It obviously puts one more westernized, democratic vote in the United Nations General Assembly, which may allow for the passing of more resolutions favorable to the United States and its allies. Moreover, in intervening in Libya, the United Nations strengthened and reinforced the doctrine of Responsibility to Protect (RtoP), the concept that the people of a nation have the right to be secured from human rights abuses first by their own government, then through international aid and assistance, and lastly, if the first two methods fail, through international military intervention. RtoP, in principle,

was accepted by all UN member states at the 2005 World Summit Outcome. UN Security Council Resolutions 1970 and 1973, which impose sanctions and provide humanitarian aid and impose a no fly zone to and on Libya respectively, use RtoP as justification and reasoning. The impact of RtoP’s application is that it represents a monumental time that RtoP has been used successfully. This puts the pieces in place for the UN to intervene in other areas of humanitarian conflict in the present or future, perhaps in Myanmar, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the list goes on and on. Essentially, the role the international community and the UN played in Libya demonstrates the success of this multilateral, RtoP method. This means that the door for multilateral UN military interventions is more open since perhaps 2001 – which could be great for the future of the world, or terrible. The possibility to relieve human suffering is fantastic, and to go at it multilaterally would represent a great accomplishment of international diplomacy and probably be more effective in the end. History reflects the latter point if one compares the modest successes of the multilateral involvement in Afghanistan since 2001, as opposed to the failures of the less multilateral intervention that has been going on in Iraq since 2003. However, the expanded role of the UN could also dictate a return to colonialism, changing aspects of countries with less power if those with more do not like them. The UN should address this concern by keeping the decision about when and if to use RtoP in the hands of the Security Council, where permanent members China and Russia, wary of the possibility for Western colonization, will check any colonialist efforts from the West. So will the new Libyan government succeed? How will this affect the 2012 U.S. presidential race? What does this mean for the international community? This article does not have all the answers, but it tries to give a few decent explanations to the questions the world must ask. History’s the only story that can tell that truth, and we haven’t gotten there yet. HMR



The Arab Spring and the

W benjamin greene

ith the rise of the Arab Spring, anti-American sentiment has become increasingly prevalent. In a part of the world where the United States has historically faced difficulty in maintaining diplomatic relationships, instability in the Arab world should push the American government to think about the consequences any political change can have. Although many of the ousted Arab leaders oppressed their own people and subscribed to a policy of tyranny, they often maintained decent relationships with the United States. Take former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak for example. For over 30 years, he sustained positive relations with many American diplomats. In addition, current Yemen President Ali Abdullah Saleh has cooperated with the United States in its war on terrorism. In a region where terrorism has become more prevalent, it is essential that our government maintain good relations with the political leaders of Yemen. Therefore, instability in the Arab World, especially in the form of political and diplomatic unrest, could pose huge hurdles for the United States and other Western countries; not only would it eliminate well-established relationships, but it could also lead to the emergence of radical Islamic political groups that preach and spread anti-western ideology. As we look back on history, we see examples of leaders assuming power through a military coup or on the wave of some political turmoil and social unrest. In 1987, a coup d’état dismissed Libyan President Habib Bourguiba, and replaced him with Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, one of the tumultuous leaders who has been more recently ousted from power. The example of the 1969 coup d’état in Libya that removed King Idris and replaced him with Muammar Qaddafi also comes to mind. History indicates that


rebellions and sweeping political change do not necessarily bring about positive results; in fact, the outcome is often counterproductive. Qaddafi, who rose to power because of the failings of the previous Libyan government, was killed on October 20 because he too had become inept in representing his citizens. Qaddafi had always maintained strained tensions with the United States, especially after the horrific Pan-Am Bombing in 1988 that killed 270 people. The attack symbolized the sentiments of Arab hostility towards the United States and other Western countries. Political instability and change, especially in the Middle East and Northern Africa region, do not always benefit the United States. Moreover, such change has often posed an imminent threat to the safety and wellbeing of the United States.

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


Rise of Anti-Americanism Although some of the recent revolts have succeeded in removing oppressive leaders from power, the United States and other Western countries should definitely monitor the region’s political situation. In Egypt and many other Arab nations, there has been a sharp rise in a political group called the Muslim Brotherhood, which many Arabs view as the panacea to their political and social woes. Although the Muslim Brotherhood is by no means a public supporter of terrorism, there have been reports that the Muslim Brotherhood “has inspired more jihadists than any other,” as quoted by former United States attorney, Andrew C. McCarthy, who has had experience in working cases against alleged terrorists to our country.

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

This is not to say that any political group that pledges allegiance to Islam is interested in carrying out terrorist attacks. However, there is no doubt that some of these groups, or members of these groups, have displayed anti-American sentiment. These regions and their political situations should be monitored carefully. The key thing for the American government to understand is the need for increased awareness. However, even if we fully monitored a situation in one of these Arab countries and noticed arising anti-American sentiments, there is only so much we can do. It is important that we respect the national sovereignty of each independent nation. While the Arab Spring has brought about much good for the Arab people, the potential rise of anti-American sentiment is troubling. Political organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood subscribe to many anti-American beliefs and have often attempted to spread these beliefs throughout the Arab World. With our knowledge of history and the influence of certain political groups, it is fair to proclaim that this region is a part of the world that the United States must monitor. However, the United States can only do so much in each of these regions. We must respect the national sovereignty of each nation, the ability of nations to make their own decisions, and the independence given to each and every citizen . A rise of anti-American sentiments wouldn’t necessarily call for American intervention; such a move would simply make matters worse. The key is to be aware of our position in a region that has been known to nurture individuals who wish to harm the United States and its inhabitants. By monitoring the popular attitudes of each country we will be able to make smarter and safer decisions. HMR







ecent history in Myanmar has been a bleak one, with many false starts at reform with the intention of curing its militaristic government, ethnic discrimination and bad international relations. However now, recent changes in Myanmar have people wondering if, at last, Myanmar is on the verge of a major breakthrough. At first I didn’t believe it, but after learning that Myanmar had announced that it had cancelled the construction of a dam that would have displaced around ten thousand people and flooded an area roughly the size of Singapore, I too, became convinced, though others find it harder to relinquish old stigmas. Furthermore, while official estimates vary, it was reported that Myanmar has recently released between two and three hundred of its political prisoners and given amnesty to over six thousand people. Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize recipient and pro-democracy leader in Myanmar famous The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Features for burying the junta (the military generals of Myanmar) in a landslide election in 1990, to which the generals paid no attention, has been released and taken seriously by the government. Her recent talks about the change in the direction of Myanmar’s policy and the sincerity of the reforms proposed by the current president, Thein Sein, has further convinced me, and many others, that Myanmar is finally on the right track, especially since her numerous stints in Myanmar’s prisons should lead her to have a bias against the government of Myanmar. Her public record in Myanmar, with numerous ar-

international ploy to get rid of economic sanctions. However, the recurrent false starts do not mean that Myanmar is unable or unwilling to change, and like Ms. Kyi, I believe that reform is finally underway. To answer critics who say that Myanmar should have liberated more of its political prisoners: Myanmar knows that it has limited leverage in the form of promises of political reform that might allow the militant state to achieve international relevance, recognition and legitimacy. The nation is not going to get rid of a large portion of its leverage all at once; rather,

The recurrent false starts do not mean that Myanmar is unable or unwilling to change, and indeed, changes are finally underway. rests, condemnations by the government, democratic protests, and her spot in history as the only opposition candidate to beat the junta give her a credibility that is hard to ignore. Finally, foreign journalists have been allowed inside the country, and Myanmar’s notoriously harsh censors have announced revisions of the laws regarding censorship, possibly getting rid of them altogether. Despite all this, people are still wary of the Myanmar government, and for good reason: Myanmar does not have a good track record when it comes to reform. Many times before, Myanmar’s generals have talked of reform, and even granted amnesty and released political prisoners, but ultimately their efforts have failed due to their unwillingness to surrender their absolute authority. Also, as numerous human rights groups have pointed out, the two to three hundred political prisoners whom Myanmar has released is only a fraction of the people who currently reside in its prisons, around two thousand by some estimates. Ethnic abuses are still abundant in Myanmar, and freedom of speech is still suppressed, as yet another journalist was recently arrested. The dam that was shut down is merely one of seven that are currently under construction throughout Myanmar. Because of this, many people think that this is just another drawn out The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

it is going to dole it out slowly, in an attempt to get the maximum benefit from it. Fortunately, Myanmar seems to care about its international image for the first time, as demonstrated by its response when asked about why it cancelled the dam. In a great stride in the realm of public relations, a government official said the dam, “would go against the will of the people.” In addition, Myanmar does not truly need the lifting of the economic sanctions – it trades extensively with China and Thailand for its natural

gas – but rather wants to eliminate them, because it is getting increasingly wary of its increased reliance on just a few countries for economic support. Myanmar is hoping to branch out. This means that the government of Myanmar would truly have to reform itself. However, because it is not yet sure how the West will react, it does not yet dare to cut ties with China further, which is the reason why it’s keeping the other six dams under construction for the time being. 90% of the energy from the cancelled dam would have gone to China, its primary trading partner. The fact that they’re willing to antagonize China in a gamble for improved international relations shows they’re serious. Myanmar is aiming for true reform, but the West must encourage and reward Myanmar if it wishes these changes to come to fruition. First of all, the West must clearly and without ambiguity declare its support for these reforms, and say that it would very much like these reforms to continue. Currently, the common trend among governments is to say that they are disappointed that the government of Myanmar hasn’t done more. This will encourage greater reform by Myanmar. Next, the western governments should set up an action-for-action plan, in which the self reform of the government and its policies would merit rewards from the international, whether it be an easing of sanctions or some other benefit. Finally, in order to make sure that the government doesn’t revert back to its old ways, the West should make sure that they trade extensively with Myanmar, whether it be in natural gas or the like, so that anything that would cut off western investment would be avoided at all costs. Myanmar is finally on the right track. The west needs to make sure that it stays there. HMR

Aang San Suu Kyi, 1991 Nobel peace prize recipient and key democracy spokesperson in Burma 27


It’s Their Country



he accelerated rise of China as an economic power and world leader has focused much attention on the structure of its government. Groups promoting democracy and human rights, both inside and outside China, have condemned the autocratic authority of the Communist Party, and many have predicted that growing unhappiness with the suppression of free speech and political rights will soon lead to democratic reforms. However, the Chinese people do not share this sentiment. According to Pew Research Center polls, 87 percent of the Chinese public reported being satisfied with the direction of their country in 2010, and 74 percent expected their living standards and life satisfaction to rise in the near future (compared with only 52 percent in the US). Two-thirds of the public approve of


their government’s performance, and 77 percent believe that China is viewed favorably by the rest of the world. The 2001 World Values Survey found that only 5 percent of Chinese saw “people having more say in their jobs or their communities” as a national priority. Much to the disconcertion of democratic activists and Western governments, the vast majority of Chinese people see economic progress and social stability as more important than free and fair elections.

Currently, China has the fastest growing major economy in the world, with growth rates of about 10% for the past 30 years. This fantastic success is due in no small part to the stable and consistent planning initiatives of the Communist Party, presented in its “FiveYear Guidelines.” These guidelines contain detailed explanations of economic goals, including GDP and population targets, monetary policy, R&D spending, energy and environmental policies,




1989 2010

Mao Zedong establishes Mao Zedong launches the Chiese troops open fire China takes over as the People’s Republic of 5-year plan: “The Great on peaceful protestors in the world’s biggest Tiannemen Square exporter China Leap Forward”

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Features foreign investment, and public works projects. However, more important than the actual content of the guidelines is the consistency inherent in single-party rule. While the expression of different opinions is actively solicited by the Com-

cepts of human rights and democracy, they provide a strikingly poor argument in favor of establishing democratic governments in foreign countries. Democracy and human rights, while correlated in many societies, are philosophically un-

Gridlock causes agonizing uncertainty for the economy, epitomized by the recent fiascos over the US government budget and the debt ceiling. munist Party to decide key policy issues, once a decision has been made, the entire party, and thus the entire country, is unified around it. Businesses are then able to plan their activities accordingly, without worrying about sudden changes in, for example, their taxes and regulations. Such a situation stands in stark contrast to the American system: under a democracy, it is impossible to construct any type of long-term plan. Gridlock causes agonizing uncertainty for the economy, epitomized by the recent fiascos over the US government budget and the debt ceiling. And even if the parties in power manage to craft a policy, there is no guarantee that they will retain power long enough to see it carried out: the policy could be continued, expanded, repealed, or replaced in as little as two years. With so much undefined risk, businesses are, logically, less inclined to make investments or expand production. Thus, the consistency of autocratic rule serves economic efficiency far better than democracy does. This is not to say that governmental planning is superior to free market policies, but rather that stability and constancy in governmental action is superior to the erratic and unpredictable intervention to which a democratic system lends itself. While other countries, such as the US, might be willing to sacrifice economic certainty for political freedoms, a country such as China that is more interested in economic development could hardly be worse served by a democracy. Advocates of the American promotion of democracy overseas, both liberal and neoconservative, also tend to emphasize human rights as a leading concern. By conflating the entirely distinct conThe Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

related. In fact, individual rights are philosophically antithetical to pure democracy: they tell the majority that they cannot vote for what they want if it does not abide by certain legal principles. Thus, true democracies are no less liable to trample on human rights than are dictatorships. Many rulers that disregard human rights came to power through the democratic process, such as Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran, to name a few. Even the US, not a pure democracy but a liberal democracy, has a long history of human rights abuses. So what is the reason to believe that the introduction of democracy to China would solve human rights abuses there? After all, as previously stated, two-thirds of the Chinese public approve of their current government’s performance. Additionally, a Global Times survey found that 79 percent of the Chinese public have negative views of American criticism of China’s human rights abuses. These views are to be expected: how would we feel if a major foreign government were constantly attacking the basic structure of our society? Most of the Chinese people seem, quite naturally, to value social order over the rights of political dissidents, whom they see as unpatriotic. Thus, it seems very likely that a democratic China would continue to violate rights to free speech and political dissent. Moreover, not only would democracy not better the Chinese human rights situation, it would take away American and international human rights organizations’ main excuse for opposing the Chinese government. Human rights advocates should focus on more reliable tactics, such as pressure from the

international community, to encourage personal freedoms in China. Another argument often proffered in support of Chinese democratization is that a democratic China would improve foreign relations with the rest of the world. For example, Arthur Waldron of the Foreign Policy Research Institute has argued that “under conditions of freedom and democracy, China would move to non-belligerence toward the West, cooperation, and increasing openness.” Waldron claims that the Chinese people would not support the massive military expenditures and anti-Western actions conducted by the current regime. Such an argument is entirely mistaken. Despite all the complaints made by the US government about Chinese military actions and trade manipulation, Sino-American relations are much better than they could be. At least the Communist Party recognizes that an armed conflict with the US would be cataclysmic and that exports

Hu Jintao, Paramount Leader of The People’s Republic of China from China to the US are vital to both countries’ economies. The same cannot be said of the Chinese people. A 2007 Program on International Policy Studies poll showed that 77 percent of Chinese reject the role of the US as a world leader. The 2001 World Values Survey found that almost 40 percent of Chinese see strong national defense as the most important national priority, the same percentage that saw economic progress as the most important. The Council on



Mao Zedong, the first Chairman of the Peopleís Republic of China, pioneered the political ideology known as Maosim, which promoted the quasi-socialist state that he would succeed in establishing in 1949. The Maoist principles of engaging the masses to create a more egalitarian society have, to an extent, been abandoned as Chinese politicians have drifted away from what some may call Maoís original intentions. However, at the expense of an egalitarian society has come a global economic power with unprecedented and virtually unrestricted growth. This booming nation is often criticized by the international community for its focus on economic growth and indifference towards human rights.


Foreign Relations has reported that the majority of Chinese are fiercely patriotic and proud of their country and history, and that American criticism of their government, on issues ranging from Tibet to Taiwan to currency manipulation, has simply encouraged anti-American sentiment. In other words, the Chinese don’t like us very much, and, since they have had no experience in running a country themselves, they have been less exposed to the consequences of rash action. Are these really the people we want in charge of the world’s largest army and fifth largest nuclear stockpile? Indeed, the Chinese public is so nationalistic that they often impede the Communist Party’s attempts to gain recognition as a serious international leader. Additionally, many Chinese are understandably upset that their government focuses so much on encouraging foreign investment rather than providing social services. Democracy in China would expose the country to dangerous strains of nationalism and uneducated populism, which, similarly to the populist movements in the US, could encourage protectionist and militaristic policies, damaging the world economy and fundamentally destabilizing EastWest relations.

Of course, I do not mean to advocate against democracy as pertains to the US. Our system does not function as a true democracy, but as a republic, which essentially means that there are certain safeguards to protect individual liberty against a tyranny of the majority. I believe, rather non-controversially, that a republic is the best model for a society and is ultimately desirable for all nations. But a republic is characterized by more than a system of governance: it is predicated on a relatively informed, educated and participatory public, and it requires concepts such as civic responsibility, the rule of law, individual rights, peaceful transition of power, and respect for political dissent to be engrained into its culture. To this end, rather than the institution of national democracy, much less some kind of democratic uprising, China, as well as the rest of the world, would be better served by continuing its economic growth and modernization, placing more focus on education, especially in rural areas, cultivating a less confrontational foreign policy, and only gradually introducing the public to more democratic institutions, such as local elections and intra-party democracy. HMR

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI




a Itwaru iy r P a h d a R By


he Summer Riots in Britain this past August consisted of a multitude of uprisings among the younger generation. They occurred in many different areas, such as London and Manchester. A large portion of the rebellions took place in London, the country’s capital. Most of the rioters were below the age of twenty-five, leading us to look to the younger generation for perspective on recent events. The riots were a direct reaction to the deprivation, poverty, and hardships of the general public. The riots were also a response to the abuse of power exercised by the British authorities. This maltreatment from the government became a public issue after it was exposed to the public as a result of the murder of Mark Duggan. The youth activists believed the government’s power was being used for the wrong reasons and that they deserved to be treated with more respect. According to the rioters, one of the main reasons for the recent rampage was the blatant social division between the middle and upper classes. The exclusivity displayed by the elite towards the middle and lower classes was too excessive in the perspective of the young people. This select group of high-class individuals caused a major rift in structural

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

society and disturbed the peace amongst the middle and lower classes. The revocation of financial assistance for educational purposes in conjunction with the poverty experienced by those of the younger generation searching for jobs were the basis for the riots. The rioters believed revolt and thievery would solve their financial issues. In certain areas the riots were directly targeted against the police. In other places the people looted and demanded more money. In short, the purpose of the riots was to address the common concerns of the middle and lower class. The riots were completely unnecessary in that the involved youth exaggerated their misfortune out of proportion. Regardless of their financial status, rampaging throughout the city and causing complete chaos was not the most rational solution. The ideal resolution to ameliorating economic hardship would be taking steps towards personal financial security and overall systematic improvement. Wreaking havoc in these various cities was not the answer and certainly did not alleviate the economic distress. The idea that these riots would have an effect on the injustices of the police was absurd, and

also counter-intuitive. If the people had a conflict with their government’s policies, the correct way to deal with the issue would have been through use of the legal system. Rioters wanted to broadcast that they wanted peace; unfortunately, it was quite an ironic and adverse method which failed horribly. The apparent purpose of these riots was intended to bring greater peace to the nation by causing a scene that opened the eyes of the authorities and the upper class to the fact that the middle class needed help. However, through they won international attention, on a practical level, the rioters simply caused chaos. If the actual intention was to increase equality, then it would seem irrational to cause further damage and conflict between the government and citizens. The government of England should publicly address the concerns and fears of the common people, specifically those of the younger generation, in order to properly deal with the intolerable outbreaks. To ensure these eruptions do not occur in the future, the government needs to recognize the calls for help from the people and take into account their difficulties during their time of need. HMR






isaiah newman

ver a month has now passed since its beginning, and the occupation of Wall Street is showing no sign of ending. The protests, which began in the Financial District in New York City have now spread across the United States, and across the globe as well; and the protesters, it seems, are planning for the long term. In New York, where the movement

started under the banner “Occupy Wall Street,� many of the protesters have set up tents and provided themselves with the supplies necessary for living in them. Many of them fully intend to occupy Wall Street, and to stay the course with this new social movement. This public anger that these protests are expressing is absolutely rational, and these protesters are upset for good reasons; their financial

security and dignity have been broken by the regulations and practices of corporate America. They are aggravated by the way the corporate economy in America, and around the globe, has been regulated, including the loose regulations from which large corporations benefit. The system of economic regulation that we currently have in place is much too lenient towards wealthy people Bangor Daily News


The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Features and corporations, and gives far too little power to less affluent Americans. It taxes wealthy Americans at a lower percentage than is necessary, and taxes some poorer Americans a higher percentage than they may be able to afford, which is absolutely absurd. It allows large corporations to get away with deceiving average American citizens in order to make money, and it permits affluent Americans, despite their wealth, to not pay as much money as the poor. While it is not unreasonable to expect large, profit-driven, companies and people to be greedy in such a manner, it is also not unreasonable to expect our government to impose stricter regulations on the activity of such business and individuals, so that Americans are not as defenseless against the deceitful moneymaking tactics that some corporations employ. For these reasons, it’s absolutely

Americans are often defenseless against the deceitful money-making tactics employed by some corporations. necessary for the change that many of the Occupy protesters seek to be brought about in this country. American citizens should have more say in how they’re governed than economic giants, which is often not the case. Powerful corporations can afford lobbyists to represent their cause in Washington, and have much more money available to donate in elections than the average American. This

must be rectified, and the system must be improved. Many Americans and people around the world are angered, frustrated, or even infuriated with the current state of affairs that the Occupy movement seems to express.

to be its main ideas, but even those are overly long and broad, and can differ in several ways. Also, the movement doesn’t appear to have any sort of leadership or controlling group. The various events

The Occupy movement must start towards adopting more unified and understandable goals and towards having a centralized leadership structure. The message that is actually coming out of the occupation is much more garbled and confused, and the central idea that the protesters seem to want to convey is not, in any sense of the word, clear. As of yet, the movement has yet to clearly articulate, adopt, or publicize any main points, possibly because there is some disagreement on what exactly they should be. Many protesters are simply protesting different causes, and this leads to somewhat of a discordant environment. It can be hard to tell what a group of protesters wants, when some hold up signs expressing opinions about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan while others express frustration with the way medical insurance companies function. While there does seem to be a general idea, as expressed above, it’s impossible for it to fully reach all Americans and government officials when it is delivered in such a confused and incomprehensible manner. True, there are lists that can be found posted on the Internet by members of the movement that contain what they believe

F A ‘15. Davis Rittmaster

around the globe are not coordinated by a singular group of people, but rather by various citizens who are uninvolved with one another. The closest that any of these protests come to having leadership is the “General Assembly” that has been created at the New York home of the movement. However, even this General Assembly is leaderless, and is far from concisely articulating the protesters’ message in terms that they all can agree on. All of this takes away support from the protests that might otherwise be gained, and makes it harder in general for the protesters to achieve the social and regulatory change that they desire. If the cause was more unified and understandable, then it would be much easier to relate to the general public, and support for this movement could more easily grow to a point where it would be necessary for governmental officials to take note of it. If the protesters were more organized, then the government and the media might actually take them more seriously. The Occupy movement must start to adopt more unified and understandable goals and work towards having a centralized leadership structure. Otherwise, it will be almost impossible for them to achieve significant social change, and to coordinate themselves such that they will be taken notice of by regulators. Changes that are necessary in this country will not be made, and that is simply not acceptable. Before they can reform the government and the corporate economic system, the protesters must reform themselves, and soon. If they do not, then our country may very well continue down our current path towards economic ruin and the abandonment of the egalitarian values on which the basis of our nation was founded. HMR

lorida genda com

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2


Features Features

Hunger is the Way By Caroline Kuritzkes


The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Features Features


magine hundreds of protestors gathering outside a prison in New Delhi, India. Carrying posters with anti-corruption slogans and waving Indian flags, these demonstrators object to the arrest of the social activist, Anna Hazare. Although the protestors face the risk of being arrested themselves, they persist in the demonstration with the image of Hazare, a symbol of a corruption-free Indian government, on their minds. How could one man inspire so many citizens to take a stand against their corrupt government? The answer lies within a powerful strategy utilized by activists throughout the ages: the hunger strike. This method of striking is not new in India; in fact, the hunger strike as a tool of political change has a long history in Indian culture. Gandhi used the hunger strike as a peaceful way of showing his objection to British

nal backgrounds. In fact, government officials expect bribes from citizens just for performing everyday tasks like registering property, allowing individuals to apply for a passport or driver’s license, and receiving tax refunds. For those in poverty, India’s bribery is a fatal blow; how can India’s poorest citizens afford to bribe their government politicians just to fulfill responsibilities Americans take for granted? Ironically, some argue that Hazare’s fasts are “political blackmail” – that it is unjust for Hazare to use the hunger strike as a means of achieving his political goals and that instead, he should fight to change India’s government in a more democratic way, like running for election himself. In reality, India should not be concerned with the supposed “political blackmail” in Anna Hazare’s fast, but instead should focus on eliminating the

of Indians across the globe.” The hunger strikes have even persuaded India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to promise that his government would start to produce the Lokpal bill in the near future, and that his cabinet is working on an “exhaustive agenda to fight corruption and improve governance” according to a letter the prime minister wrote to Hazare. So why is the hunger strike such an effective method for Hazare to mobilize support in India? First, the fact that fasting harms Hazare, rather than India’s government itself, enables him to draw sympathy from many sources, including India’s citizens and the media. In turn, the media publicizes the hunger strikes worldwide, exerting pressure on India’s government to at least consider Hazare’s Lokpal bill. Thus, the public and the media are more likely to identify with his cause through guilt and sympathy, result-

Anna Hazare’s moden day fight against corruption in India rule in India and to persuade Hindus and Muslims to reconcile their differences in the 1930’s and 1940’s. In addition, this ancient practice is even found in The Ramayana, the ancient Indian epic, when Rama’s brother, Bharata, tries to convince Rama to return to ruling his kingdom after being exiled for many years. Currently, Hazare is “fasting unto death” in an attempt to rouse supporters and pass the Lokpal Bill, an anti-corruption proposal. More specifically, Hazare proposes that if enacted, the bill would create the Lokpal government body, a sector responsible for investigating suspected government crimes and corruption cases while protecting whistleblowers. He protests the fact that many senior officials in India’s government currently have crimi-

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 12

blackmail in its own government. Hazare’s fasting is not only justified but also unique, because the hunger strike is an effective strategy to mobilize support and ultimately change India’s government. In an interview with The New York Times, Hazare argues that the people elect politicians in parliament to “make good laws and take care of the treasury” and that if parliament is not fulfilling its responsibilities, Hazare has a right to protest. His protests are only encouraging India’s government to pass the Lokpal bill; he is pressuring, not forcing, the government to make a change. Perhaps government officials are so opposed to Hazare’s hunger strikes because they seem to be successful; according to the Times of India, Anna Hazare has “captured the attention

ing in India’s government succumbing to external pressures. The fact that Hazare is transforming India through a hunger strike is truly remarkable. Hazare has brought world awareness to the corruption in India’s government while encouraging actual political reform. Yet the hunger strike, the strategy Hazare has used to achieve his political goals, has endured throughout the ages. Perhaps the most unique aspect of Hazare’s protests is that he has successfully implemented an ancient practice to reshape the world’s largest democracy in modern times. From The Ramayana, to Gandhi, to Anna Hazare, the hunger strike is a legacy India will always embrace. HMR






n July 9, 2011, South Sudan finally gained independence and became the Republic of South Sudan. The achievement of independence was a huge accomplishment for the inhabitants of Southern Sudan, 99% of whom wanted to become a country independent from Sudan. The people living in southern Sudan did not suddenly decide to become independent; rather, they had been fighting for their independence since the second half of the twentieth century. Northern and southern Sudan differed from each other in too many ways for them to remain peacefully unified. Animists and Christians populated Southern Sudan, while Muslims and Arabs populated northern Sudan. Also, the people of southern Sudan opposed northern Sudan’s attempt to impose Islamic Sharia law on the whole country. In addition, due to lack of representation in government, there was The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


great inequality between northern and southern Sudan. Northern Sudan had cities and access to many luxuries, while southern Sudan had no cities and did not share in the luxuries northern Sudan enjoyed. Due to these unequal and tense circumstances, rebellions continued during the 1960s and 1980s in South Sudan after a failed attempt at independence. The government in northern Sudan responded to these rebellions by bombing villages, massacring civilians, and enslaving southern Sudanese children. All this fighting, however, was supposed to end after the 2005 Peace Accord. The 2005 Peace Accord granted

The joyous day of independence for Southern Sudan, however, was not worry-free for everyone.

the people in southern Sudan the right to secede and to be represented in the government. Due to military stalemates and the exhaustion of constant warfare, the agreement was signed. This was a significant turning point in the history of Sudan, as it marked the end of the civil war in Africa that had killed 2.2 million people. The issue with the 2005 Peace Accord was that North and South Sudan could not agree on the north-south border and the splitting of oil profits. Still, the people of northern and southern Sudan knew they would have to maintain peace as two different countries. Southern Sudan contains 75% of Sudan’s oil reserves, but northern Sudan has the refineries and pipelines. As a result, the economies of the countries directly rely on each other. However, this fact did not stop northern Sudan in raising tensions by claiming full rights to profitable oil deposits The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

in July of 2009. These oil deposits were located in the Heglig oil field, previously located on the border between northern and southern Sudan. Fighting broke out, as southern Sudan interpreted this action as a way for northern Sudan to secure as much land as possible before South Sudan’s independence was declared. More and more fighting occurred as Mr. Bashir, the president of Sudan and notorious his crimes against humanity, kept on claiming more land for northern Sudan. This caused 100,000 southern Sudanese to flee from the Abyei region. Clearly, the peace agreement was not working as well as planned. As a result, the joyous day of independence for southern Sudanese people was not worry-free for everyone. Conflicts arose soon after South Sudan seceded, including the continuation of fighting along the border and in the Nuba Mountains. In these mountains, cattle raids occurred between the Nuba people who support the SPLA (Sudan People’s Liberation Army) and the northern government. Also, fighting erupted along the border as a result of attempts to claim more rich oil deposits. South Sudan, now part of the UN, needs to develop an economy separate from North Sudan and create peace, or as much peace as possible. South Sudan has great economic potential. It has gold, cotton, and vast amounts of oil. If the independence of South Sudan is to succeed, the UN needs to support South Sudan and build refineries in South Sudan so the country is not as reliant on North Sudan. This way, even if the peace does not last, the economy of South Sudan will not plummet. The independence of South Sudan was a great accomplishment, but the country needs the UN’s help if it is to successfully stay independent. HMR

The recently elected Salva Kiir Mayardit, has taken leadership of the newly independent country of South Sudan. 37


THE PROSPECT OF SETTLEMENT Examining the impact of Israeli settlements in the West Bank



ettlements, who knew that one word could cause a long peace process to halt, alliances to become strained, and political stability to be tested. The reason a word like settlements has such a contentious background is because of the Arab-Israeli conflict. The settlements in question are the ones being built for citizens of Israel, mostly Ultra-Orthodox Jews, in the West Bank, which would be part of a Palestinian state, if one were created. The Palestinians pressured Israel into putting a freeze on the building of settlements during the start of the IsraeliPalestinian peace talks mediated by the U.S. After one year of getting nowhere Israel announced it would resume building the settlements. In response to this, the PA (Palestinian authority) refused to continue any talks until Israel extended its freeze on the construction of settlements, they have still not returned to the talks as of now. Palestine has used the


settlements to gain sympathy for its cause at the UN; the controversy has strained the normally ironclad alliance between the U.S. and Israel. I think that countries are forgetting that Israel also has valid claims to why they should be allowed to build settlements and that the issue of settlements should not be so much in favor of the Palestinians as it is now. First of all, The West Bank is still technically Israeli territory so Israel has a right to build there. While it is true that building settlements in the area is provocative and harmful to the peace process, it is not illegal. I think that the settlement building is not illegal but will lead to problems in the long run for Israel. It will cause problems because, when a Palestinian state is born in the West Bank, Israel will have to get rid of the settlements, which will force Israelis out of their homes, a concept that some people think is akin to Palestinians being forced out of their land when Israel invad-

ed. However I think these settlements are beneficial in that it helps Israel solve the problem of Hasidic Israelis. When I traveled to Israel two summers ago it seemed that, after Arabs, Hasidim were the next group that Israeli citizens found irksome. At first I was baffled at why this was but then our Israeli tour guide told us the reasons behind his dislike of Hasidic Jews. He disliked them because they wasted tax payer money by not working and living off the state as well as causing unrest by protesting when girls attended school or assaulting people who drove by in cars during the Sabbath. The communities allow these Hasidim to practice their ways in seclusion, which allows them to follow the customs they choose as well as allows Jews who are not as religious to practice their interpretation of the faith in their own way without being attacked by the ultra-religious. I believe that the opinion shared by many countries around the world that Israel is in the wrong about The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


Who knew that settlements could cause a long peace process to halt, alliances to become strained, and political stability to be tested? these settlements is unfair and flawed. Most people know that Israel has refused to stop building the settlements but many don’t know that during the one year settlement freeze the PA refused to negotiate and stalled until the settlement freeze expired. They stalled in order to turn public opinion against Israel and further their own case for statehood. In conclusion, the building of settlements by Israel is not illegal but will end badly for the Israelis when a Palestinian state finally is born. In the short run it is a useful way to allow ultra-orthodox Jews to practice their faith without antagonizing less observant Israelis. Finally, I think that the Palestinians have attempted to use the issue of settlements as leverage against Israel in the UN as well as purposely stalling during the settlement freeze to pressure Israel and to push their case for statehood. HMR

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

A great wall marks the West Bank, the area in which the settlements are built.The wall has become a symbol of the conflict between Israel and Palestine over the territory of the West Bank, a conflict that the settlements themselves have inflamed. 39


Economics The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little. -Franklin Delano Roosevelt


Voodoo Economics

Exposing the Myth of Trickle-Down



ess than four years after “trickle down” economics led to a huge concentration of wealth and the ultimate collapse of the nation’s economy under President Bush, Republicans are once again trumpeting the benefits of their economic theory. The Republicans claim that lavishing tax benefits on the rich and on corporations already flush with cash will reinvigorate the economy, stimulate employment, and somehow cause benefits to trickle down to the average worker and the middle class. But time and time again, trickle down (or “supply side”) economics has made the rich


richer and done little, or nothing, for the average worker. Moreover, the enactment of “trickle-down” policies has twice led to financial calamity for the nation’s economy and has played a major role in creating the enormous debts with which the nation now struggles. Through the years, the Republicans have stood by “supply side” economics with an almost religious devotion. They continue pass it off as an economic theory so proven by history that it is beyond question or debate. During the recent debt ceiling negotiations, Republicans demanded huge cuts in programs benefitting the lower

and middle classes, but they steadfastly opposed the elimination of tax breaks and loopholes benefitting the rich or large corporations. For example, they opposed the elimination of the “carried interest” provision of the tax code which allows hedge fund operators earning tens of millions of dollars to pay taxes at rates lower than the rates paid by their secretaries. In addition, they opposed the closing of loopholes that allow oil companies reporting billions in quarterly profits to pay reduced taxes and the elimination of deductions for the use of private jets. They also opposed a repeal of the Bush’s tax cuts for The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Economics the top 1% of the population, or those earning more than $250,000 per year, even though repealing the cuts would have returned the rates for the highest income earners to their levels during the Clinton years, a period when the economy prospered and produced more than 20 million new jobs. By insisting that they would not agree to eliminate any of these tax benefits for the wealthy and for corporations, Republicans killed any effort to reach a compromise with Democrats on a $4 trillion debt reduction plan. And, with the presidential election only a year away, Republican contenders are falling over themselves to prove their steadfast devotion to “supply side” economics. Ironically, Republicans have demanded “hands off ” any closing of loopholes or benefits for the wealthiest Americans or corporations at the very same time that they have opposed an extension of the payroll tax cut which has benefitted average workers. Republicans have also begun to agitate for a repeal of the earned income tax credit passed under President Reagan, which also benefits lower income Americans. Republicans present as a truism the theory that huge tax benefits for

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

the wealthy and for corporations will somehow benefit the average worker. But history demonstrates that “supply side” economics has never worked. There have been three great experiments in “supply side” economics over the nation’s recent history: the Bush years, the Reagan presidency, and the Roaring ‘20s. Far from benefitting the average worker, “supply side” economics has led to huge benefits for the wealthy and with little or no benefit for the average American; it has twice contributed to economic collapse (first, the Great Depression following the Roaring ‘20s, and, second, the collapse under President Bush); and it has produced huge budget deficits, including those created under Presidents Reagan and Bush.

The Bush Presidency


he most recent example of the failure of “supply side” economics comes from the Bush years. Under President Clinton, who raised taxes on upper income earners in 1993, the economy created more than 20 million new jobs and produced four consecutive years of budget surpluses between 1998 and 2001. Upon tak-

ing office in 2001, President Bush immediately pushed through Congress a huge tax cut, the largest tax cut in history, which provided an enormous reduction taxes for the wealthy. Bush proclaimed that “tax relief will create new jobs, tax relief will generate new wealth, and tax relief will open new opportunities,” and that “these tax reductions will bring real and immediate benefits to middle-income Americans.” The Bush tax cuts did just the opposite. The Bush tax cuts provided massive benefits to the wealthiest Americans and almost no benefit to anyone else. As was highlighted in a 2007 Congressional Budget Office report, between 2001 and 2007, the average pretax income of the top 1% of American households increased by a staggering $645,200, or more than 50%, while the average pre-tax income of the lower four quintiles of American families increased by only about 0.5-1% per year. Over the same six year period, the share of the national income of the top 20% of Americans jumped from 52.3% to 55.9%, and the share of the national income of the top 1% rose from 14.7% to a staggering 19.4%; at the same time, the shares of national income of each


Economics of the bottom 80% of American families dropped almost every year and the share of national income of the middle class (whom Bush had identified as the beneficiaries of his tax plan) dropped from 14.2% to 13.1%. Another study indicated that, by 2007, the top 1% of Americans held 34.6% of the total net worth in the U.S. and 42.7% of the financial wealth. As far as job creation is concerned, the Bush “trickle down” years prove that supply side does nothing for unemployment. In 1993, when President Clinton raised tax rates for the wealthy, Conservatives argued, as usual, that his tax increases would create massive unemployment. But, in fact, the Clinton administration created 20 million new jobs. By contrast, Bush slashed tax rates and created only 3 million jobs during his tenure, while the market crash of 2008 which ended his second term left many millions more unemployed in the years which followed his presidency. The annual rate of growth in the national job base during the Bush presidency was the lowest of the 11 presidencies of the post-war era. Finally, Bush “trickle down” economics created huge budget deficits, which are supposedly despised by Republicans. In contrast to the surpluses created in final four years of the Clinton administration, Bush produced accumulated deficits of more than $4 trillion, and he increased the national debt from approximately $5.8 trillion to approximately $10.4 trillion.

The Reagan Years

R 42

epublicans who believe in supply-side economics lionize

Ronald Reagan and cite his presidency as proof that their “trickle down” economic theories work. Yet the experience of the Reagan years indicates nothing of the sort and has been mischaracterized by Republicans to suit their economic theory. The argument that tax cuts were the true source of economic recovery during the Reagan years is doubtful at best. Nevertheless, it is a myth continuously perpetuated by Republicans. Moreover, the gains during the Reagan years were enjoyed principally by the wealthiest Ameri-

cans, while the average worker, once again, saw little benefit. Between 1976 and 1981, Mideast turmoil caused oil prices to triple, provoking a global economic recession and driving inflation rates in the U.S. above 13%. In the first two years of Reagan’s presidency (1981 and 1982), the country continued to suffer from a severe recession, and Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker drove interest rates as high as 20% in order to crush the soaring inflation. Once Volcker succeeded in breaking the back of inflation, he dramatically slashed interest rates in 1983, resulting in a sharp

turn-around in the economy and an end to the recession. As economist Paul Krugman has pointed out, this was a classic Keynesian response to the loosening of credit by the Federal Reserve. The recovery of the economy directly tracked Federal Reserve policy, not the tax policies of the Reagan administration. Moreover, the claim that Reagan cut taxes consistently throughout his presidency is highly misleading. In 1981, Congress passed the Economic Recovery Tax Act, which cut taxes by $264 billion over the term of Reagan’s presidency. However, between 1983 and 1988, Reagan signed into law 11 different bills that together increased taxes by approximately 50% of the tax cut in the 1981 legislation. There was no recovery in the economy until 1983, when the Federal Reserve loosened its grip on interest rates. In fact, in 1983, with unemployment still at a level of about 10%, Reagan actually raised taxes to reduce budget deficits, contradicting the tax cut mythology of present day Republican and Tea Party ideologues. And as Reagan raised taxes repeatedly between 1983 and 1985, the economy steadily gained jobs, also contradicting the Republican myth. One impact which Reagan’s tax cuts did have was to provide huge benefits to the wealthy, while providing little benefit to the average worker, and to bring about an enormous concentration of wealth in the top income group. According to a 2007 Congressional Budget Office Report, during the Reagan years, the average pretax income of the top 1% rose by approximately 80%, while the income of the The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Economics bottom 20% actually fell by nearly 3%. Over the course of Reagan’s presidency, the share of national income of the wealthiest 1% of society spiked from 9.1% to 13.3%, while the share of the poorest 20% dropped from 5.7% to 4.3% and the share of the middle quintile dropped from 15.7% to 14.9%. So, while the wealthiest Americans saw their incomes soar under Ronald Reagan, the average American actually saw his income go nowhere. Under Reagan, the top 1% also saw their share of total

cans equaled that of the poorest 42%. More than 60% of families earned less than $2,000 per year, the income needed for basic necessities. Forty percent of all Americans earned less than $1,500. Moreover, throughout the “Roaring 20s” the farm economy was in a depression. The result of all the economic inequality was that the average person lacked the money to purchase the goods that were being churned out in massive quantity from the fleet of

Champions of Trickle Down Wikipedia

Once the questions are asked, supply-side economic theory is like the emperor with no clothes. national household wealth grow from 33.8% in 1983 to a staggering 37.4% in 1989. Yet another harmful effect of the Reagan tax cuts was to cause a huge increase in the national debt. Under Reagan, the national debt tripled, reaching $2.8 trillion by the time Reagan left office.

The Roaring 20s


wentieth-century trickledown economics first emerged into public policy in the 1920s, when consecutive Presidents Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover promised a “return to normalcy” and an undoing of the progressivism of Woodrow Wilson. The “Roaring ‘20s” that ensued came to be known for spectacular economic prosperity and bountiful wealth. But this label of the 1920s and the supposed universality of the newfound wealth were largely illusory. The romantic facade of the “Roaring ‘20s” actually veiled a state of dangerous economic inequality that would contribute to the onset of the Great Depression. Just a small section of society benefited from the “Roaring ‘20s.” The increase in national income of about 20% from 1923 to 1929 was not at all distributed across the classes of society. During this period, the wealthiest 1% saw their incomes jump by 75%. The average income of the remaining 99% rose just 9% or an average of only about 1-1.5% per year. Inequality reached a peak in 1929, when the income of the wealthiest 0.1% of AmeriThe Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

American factories. A huge concentration of wealth meant a lack of consumers to purchase all of the goods that were being produced, leading to a dramatic decline in demand and huge overproduction well before the stock market collapsed in 1929. The huge overproduction that took hold as a result became a major contributing factor towards the collapse of the economy in 1929 and the onset of the Great Depression. The lesson was clear. If average citizens do not have money to purchase goods, there will be no demand. The “Roaring 20s”, like the Bush years, was an experiment in “supply side” economics that led to disaster. In his famous Fala Speech, President Franklin Roosevelt, responding to conservative Republican critics of his time, noted the conservative strategy based upon the belief that a lie would somehow become credible “if only you keep repeating it over and over again.” Today, the great lie is the claim that “supply side” economics works and that it somehow provides benefits to average workers. As history shows, each time “trickle-down” economics is given another trial run it leads to huge benefits for the wealthy, and no benefit for the average worker. The theory has led to huge budget deficits and two economic collapses. No wonder Republicans push “trickle down” economics as a truth beyond question. Once the questions are asked, their economic theory is like the emperor with no clothes. HMR

Herbert Hoover


Ronald Reagan Wikipedia

George W. Bush 43


A New Look at Aid in


here I come from, there is no food,” said Abdio Ali Elmoi, a Somali woman who lost three children to hunger. Growing numbers of the hungry are an ever more imminent problem in Africa, especially in light of rising food prices, falling crop yields, and extended periods of drought over the past two years. Furthermore, according to the Christian Science Monitor, only two percent of African farmers have an irrigation system, adding to the complexity of the problems. However, it is possible not only to help solve the hunger problem, but to help stimulate African economies while doing so. Economic and hunger relief can be accomplished through microfinancing and education in farming techniques. Starvation is a cruel way to die especially consid-


ering that it can be prevented with logical thinking and humanitarian efforts. An obvious solution to Africa’s food crisis would be to provide food directly to nations in need. One notable product called Plumpy’nut, a peanut-based nutritional supplement, has proven highly effective in preventing starvation in adolescents and children. However, the donation of food, while seeming logical, may not offer the best solution, as it does not solve the true problem in the long term. While accepted practice is giving Africa billions of dollars in aid to solve its hunger problems, it will actually exacerbate the problem at hand. The cash is used to buy imported goods, and as a result local farms are put out of business. Moreover, placing African nations at the mercy of benefactors is a highly precarious endeavor, as sooner or later, the cash stream

is sure to disappear. Thus, giving African nations direct monetary and food support is just another way to make the matter worse in the long run. One solution to this negative economic cycle is through microfinancing. Microfinancing consists of individuals around the world giving money on a small scale to subsistence farmers who would not qualify for loan; the small amount of money could be used to buy equipment that would help their farming. This helps the farmers to produce a better crop by letting them purchase the tools to do so while also improving the long-term profits for those companies providing the equipment. Also, along with producing a better crop, more of that crop can be produced, possibly resulting in a lower, more affordable, price. And lower prices, created by greater supply, could result in fewer deaths

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI


Famine Stricken



Flagpedia Flickr


from starvation, and a better quality of life for the continent. As farmers begin to make more profit, they will be able to reinvest in order to buy more equipment and supplies that will increase productivity on the farm, and will then themselves begin to hire additional laborers, thus improving the fortunes for all. This is all due to a small loan, the microfinancing, which enabled the farmer to purchase the necessary equipment. One of the major problems with food growth in Africa is the drought in eastern Africa. The United Nations ought to set up free vocational schools for the express purpose of training African farmers to be more efficient and educated in farming techniques, providing farmers with stronger seeds that are easier to grow in drier climates, delivering clean water. Without water, growth for crops is impossible. Drip The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2


Starvation is a cruel way to die especially considering that it can be prevented with logical thinking and humanitarian efforts. Irrigation systems are becoming more and more advanced. The drip irrigation should be installed into farms in Eastern Africa and placed into soil currently unfertile. In addition, this product helps in clean water delivery to the plants. Large hybrid seed companies, such as Pioneer, would have much to gain by stepping up their efforts in the region, with some help from micro financing. During the past year Mozambique began to look toward hybrid seeds to help with their food crisis to great effect. If we follow these measures: microfinancing, drip irrigation, and education—hunger in Africa will decrease. Giving large amounts of food and money, which sustains the problem, should be recognized as nothing more than an intermediary step as part of the real long term solution. HMR




Kenya 45


The IMF: On The Brink of Collapse lauren futter


he notion of “too big to fail” has proven to be false during the recession the world now faces. However, the saying “the bigger they are the harder they fall” has increasing relevance in the European Union (EU) debt crisis and in the IMF’s efforts to help the EU. Although the IMF has been trying to assist the EU, it is increasingly under attack for a variety of reasons. The EU is becoming increasingly wary of the IMF, and it has been suggested that the IMF might play an increasingly smaller role in the economy in years to come. In addition, the countries that fund the IMF have recently acquired large debts, which have caused these countries to question their commitment to funding the IMF, resulting in the diminishment of IMF’s funds.


The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Economics One of the many tasks of the IMF is to serve as a coordination mechanism between wealthy countries and countries in debt. The IMF also assigns economists to decide the best course of action for struggling countries. In recent years, the IMF has come under the scrutiny of the public and of the EU. While most of the countries in the European Union find themselves in some form of debt, Spain, Italy, Ireland, and Greece are especially indebted to the EU, the IMF, and other countries. Greece, in particular, has been in considerable debt since 2008 because it relies heavily on the tourist industry, which has slowed due to the recession. Recently, the G20, an organization consisting of 20 of the most influential countries in the world, met to reach a consensus on a possible stimulus package that the IMF has proposed for Greece. The stimulus package would allocate twenty billion dollars for Greece’s use. This package has been criticized because Greece has already been bailed out several times

Geithner has said that the U.S. will not increase funds for the IMF. What seems to be forgotten is that the IMF is an international organization made of countries, and it is only as effective as the countries that comprise it want it to be. If these countries are planning to abandon support for IMF, the organization may not exist for these countries to use when they are in need of a stimulus or economic support. All of this begs the question of what would happen if the IMF’s solution failed with the use of the stimulus package for Greece. Other than the implications the stimulus would have for the EU and countries around the world, the stimulus package would cause many of the countries that fund the IMF to lose faith in it. If the countries funding the IMF lose faith in it as an organization, then they might not allocate as much of their budgets for IMF purposes, thus reducing IMF resources. If the IMF’s stimulus plan were to work, however, renewed faith in the IMF would ensue. The publicity surrounding Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s forced resignation from the IMF, due to alleged sexual miscon-

What is the IMF to do when the countries that have previously served as its pillars are in need of financial help? yet its economy has not improved. In addition, many have questioned whether or not the Greek government is willing to implement the austerity measures that the stimulus package is conditioned on, such as reducing social security and welfare and raising the retirement age. While this issue has been debated by the G20 and the European Union, the IMF has taken the hardline approach and strongly urges that another stimulus package be given to Greece if Greece takes austerity measures, because if the nation fails, it will cause contagion and depreciate the value of the Euro. However, The U.S. has strongly urged against using the stimulus package, and other countries have been inclined to agree. The U.S.’ logic is that if Greece cuts several of its welfare programs, it will have more money to use for stimulating the economy. European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs Joaquin Almunia stated in 2010, “we don’t need to call the IMF, we have more then enough instruments in the [EU] treaty to tackle a situation like the one in Greece”. More recently, the U.S. Treasury Secretary Tim The Horace Mann Review | Issue 1

duct, weakened the credibility of the IMF. Although Christine Lagarde, France’s former finance minister and new president of the IMF, appears to be a worthy successor, many people are still wary of the organization. The success of the stimulus would be the first major accomplishment for Lagarde and would increase confidence in the IMF. Overall, the past few years have been difficult for the IMF. Now, the countries the IMF relies on for funding are increasingly finding themselves financially unstable. What is the IMF to do when the countries that have previously served as its pillars are in need of financial help? The IMF has been forced to think more creatively in order to help the countries that support it financially. Recently, at the Dublin Economic Workshops, deputy director of the IMF Ajai Chopra spoke of creating a European Resolution Authority, which would focus specifically on the roles of banks in the economy. While the world could use a large and powerful organization to help alleviate economic distress, it seems unlikely that this body will take shape as an expanded form of the IMF. There may be a call to create a more unified central overseer of the global financial system in order to help countries regulate their domestic economies. Alternatively, the IMF could collapse due to a lack of funding and the desire of the EU not to have an international organization attempt to rescue it every time it appears to be in trouble. However, this remains to be seen as the global economic crisis continues to unfold in ways never imagined. HMR



The Human Side of Economics: An HM Alumna’s Perspective Dr. Keyu Jin, alumna of the class of 2000, is an Associate Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics. Her academic focus is macroeconomics, with an emphasis on China’s economy and emerging markets around the world. She sat down with The Review on Friday, October 21st, to discuss globalization, mutliculuralism, and her unique perspective as an educator. Horace Mann Review: This is an interview with Dr. Keyu Jin, assistant professor of economics at the London School of Economics. Why don’t you tell me a little bit about what you teach? Dr. Keyu Jin: I teach an undergraduate course

with almost 300 students on international macroeconomics, but with a global perspective where we have countries that are linked financially and through trade. We try to understand some of these prevailing issues that we talk about in the real world nowadays, and how to think about these issues in a more theoretical framework. I also teach a six-student PhD class where we try to push further the frontiers of research in international finance. HMR: I understand you grew up in China, you attended high school in Riverdale here at HM, and now you’re living in London. Does your own personal experience with multiculturalism impact your global view of economics? Jin: I think that’s been most fundamental to all the choices I’ve made, not only my interest in global macro but also the perspective I brought with me in understanding economics today. This global perspective has become so crucial because of globalization; we


need to really understand each individual player like China, like India, like the US. Without this kind of multicultural perspective, we really can’t understand why certain countries make certain choices in terms of diplomacy, economics, and how they choose to engage in the international economic arena. I think that has been really crucial, and coming from China, I really understand the Chinese perspective and why history has played such a big role in China’s policy-making. A lot of these quibbles, even arguments, between China and other countries are really easy to understand once you have that perspective, going back to this cultural, philosophical underpinning of the country. Then I came here, and Horace Mann really opened up my mind, because I had studied in China, where the approach of the education was slightly more mechanical, slightly more about replication and less about thinking and questioning. When I got to Horace Mann, the entire way of learning was completely the opposite. Sitting in Mr. DeVito’s class, the first thing he does is to get rid of all your preconceived notions and question anything. We were never really allowed to ask questions back in China. It did give me a very good background for mathematics and I absolutely loved Mr. Jones’ math classes, because I was able to further my studies and also learn a little bit more from an outsidethe-box approach. And I really appreciate that. The The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Economics education system was completely different, but I think the most important thing was that the school taught me to think, both for myself and outside the box. Even for a discipline like economics, which a lot of people think is a lot more math and more rigorous and more mechanical, the best papers are the ones that have been creative. That’s really important. HMR: In a field that’s perceived to be more focused in the hard sciences, as an educator, how do you try to bring that global personal perspective into your classrooms? Jin: I think we all have to develop a passion in what we do and the way I try to elicit that passion for economics, especially for global macroeconomics, is to bring in real-world issues. My undergrad class would talk about global imbalances or sovereign debt defaults, currency crises, all these things which are really world-relevant. So I could bring in an article or quote from The Economist, and “let’s think about this; is The Economist right? How can we put this in more rigorous forms to evaluate whether this is a valid statement or not?” So first you want to elicit interest, give them a puzzle: why is the world really like this when intuition tells us it should be like that? Then give them the theoretical aspect: look, this is the beauty of economics and where mathematics becomes useful is that it can teach us a lot of counterintuitive things. We can’t always use common sense to judge everything. If we only rely on that, we make plenty of mistakes. This mathematical rigor can ultimately guide us to what is the right thing. To evaluate these real world issues, bring in the theory, and then evaluate this real world issue in that context and open up the floor again, that’s usually what I do. HMR: You’re also an accomplished writer and an occasional commentator on Bloomberg TV and other news shows. How do you try to explain these economic concepts to a more general audience as opposed to graduate students? Jin: The most challenging part now for academics is how to convey a very complex problem very simply and very intuitively, and that’s really a form of art. When I went on the job market for academics, my professors at Harvard told me, “Well you need to be able to give a one-minute pitch in an elevator

and make sure your grandmother can understand it.” So you want to be able to put it in a way that your grandma can understand these complex issues, and I think that’s really the challenge. And that’s where there could be a bridge between academics and the real world, in how to convey those complex thoughts. The first thing is I’m always interested by only things that motivate me from the real world-a real world phenomenon. Abstract theories are very elegant, but they personally interest me less because I want to go after the issues that are presented to us today. These real-world issues people can understand because they’re reading about them all the time in newspapers. How do you convey a complex idea simply? First of all, let’s think openly about what intuition tells us. Economics is still something where we can use a lot of intuition to help guide us. Then we say, “Is this really what is happening? Why is it or why is it not; especially why is it not?” And try to understand it, because ultimately it is about how agents behave— households, firms, governments. Down to the very basic notion, I think everyone can understand. It’s really in how you put the parts together in a logical manner that it becomes easier to comprehend. Down to the actual actions: why are houses borrowing so little, why are some agents choosing to behave that way? I think the great thing about economics is that you can actually convey it with very simple terms. HMR: So would you say there’re not really much grounds for the sensationalist fear that many Americans have towards China and emerging economies? Jin: I think there’s a lot of misunderstanding and miscommunication, and that’s really what’s driving all this mistrust as well. If we purely think in economic terms, it’s very healthy to let there be emerging markets which serve as competition for the US economy. That’s actually going to help the US economy, rather than steal away jobs or manufacturing. It’s a really great environment, especially with the ability to trade, to increase overall efficiency that could expand the pie globally, and not only favor some countries over others. I think it’s become a political issue as to which policies are made precisely because in an economy like the U.S.’, they are more interested in protecting certain sectors and not giving away jobs in those sectors for political reasons. That is against what is the most economic formulation. The interaction between

“I’m always interested by only things that motivate me from the real world-a real world phenomenon. Abstract theories are very elegant, but they personally interest me less because I want to go after the issues that are presented to us today” —Dr. Keyu Jin The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2


Economics economics and politics is the way of life, and we have to accept that. Despite what economic policies tell us we should do, we might not be able to accomplish that for those political reasons. But I think that a lot of it is just simple miscommunication. The threat of China, I can understand where it’s coming from, and I can say it’s good to be wary. But to let it influence economic policies today in such a way that it actually hurts consumers here in the US or in China is just going too far. If you look back at China’s history, it’s never really been so aggressive or very imperialistic, and never taken on that route. I really don’t see China doing that, no matter how strong it is economically. But one has to learn about Chinese history and really understand how the Chinese think to appreciate that. I’m not at all surprised that that’s difficult. We don’t really mutually understand each other deeply. Having emerging markets serving as competition and potential consumer bases will be enormously beneficial to everyone now. It’s just about ironing out these differences that will help us go further. HMR: What trends do you think we can look out for in emerging markets in terms of political and cultural understanding? Jin: I think one thing is the world will become even more globalized with more global linkages. Now you have effectively also the trends in emerging markets where they’re developing a huge purchasing power base, so that they can demand more of this stuff that’s produced in the U.S. and Europe. A lot of that stuff is not able to be produced in India and China, so there’s still a lot of comparative advantage in high skill-intensive, high capital-intensive, knowledge-based intensive products that America and Europeans are very good at producing and can’t be produced elsewhere. So as these consumers in emerging markets procure this wealth and purchasing power, they will start to demand more of these goods. So

that’s a great thing, because it will stimulate demand elsewhere in the world. So that’s one thing we’ll have out of emerging markets. Another is I think emerging markets will stand closer together to act as a counterbalance to the rest of the world, because sometimes we find in frustrating moments, like now, after crises and when the unemployment rate is high, we want to vent out that frustration on other countries. That can show up as the bill that was recently passed on China increasing tariffs on Chinese imports, as a manifestation of the frustration of the domestic economy. So now emerging markets might choose to stand together, that one day they might choose to stand behind one guy to become the IMF head. Just because they fail this time doesn’t mean they won’t be able to do it in the future. And to have this counterweight so there’s more fair competition, that there’s a check and balance in the whole world order, and that it’s not just what every other country tells them to do. So that might be an interesting and good trend to follow. Capital flows across emerging markets and developing economies are very interesting, because effectively now we have emerging markets being lenders of money rather than borrowers. They’re propping up their consumption; they’re financing the consumption in the rest of the world. How that will play out over time, one doesn’t know. It could be that more capital is going to flow to these emerging markets due to better macroeconomic governance, less corruption, which would attract much more investment into their countries, and eventually would reverse the flows of capital so they would be borrowers. It would be wrong, because of the frustration with the domestic economy, to say we will engage in protectionist policies and close up our economy. That would be the wrong policy choice. Unfortunately, because of political reasons, we can’t prevent that from happening. But it would be very sad to see that happen, because that would be bad for everyone.

“I think being very open and being ready to appreciate other perspectives is very valuable.” 50

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Economics “It’s very healthy to let there be emerging markets which serve as competition for the U.S. economy. That’s actually going to help the U.S. economy, rather than steal away jobs or manufacturing. It’s a really great environment, especially with the ability to trade, to increase overall efficiency that could expand the pie globally, and not only favor some countries over others.”

HMR: What do you see as a more logical course towards regrowth after crisis? Jin: We need to be ready to face up to the reality of globalization here in the U.S. and Europe, which is that a lot of sectors here are not competitive anymore. You can keep protecting them, but unemployment rate will still be as high because products are being produced more cheaply in China and India. If you face up to this reality of globalization, even to undertake or give lots of resources to retraining workers and moving them to sectors where Americans are really good at producing. That is being much more openminded and will help the economy much more than protecting inefficient sectors like automobiles in Detroit, for instance. That is because of political pressure. But if we are able to recognize that this is a truly global economy, given this context, how can we not merely enforce the American paradigm and not simply stick to what we have done in the past but really bring in change? I would see the economy more optimistically if they were ready to make changes and recognize the fact that no matter how hard you try to stimulate the economy through monetary and fiscal policies, a lot of them might be leaked out to other economies through these global linkages. The example I gave in the classroom is that you might want to stimulate the American economy and people to want more iPhones, but iPhones get produced in China, not here. That doesn’t help unemployment in the U.S. If we don’t want to face these challenges and the fact that this is a global reality, then we might be in a gridlock for a long time. HMR: On a different note, there’s a common perception that economics is a field generally dominated by men. Do you find any truth to this?

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 1

Jin: That’s certainly a fact; I was the only female in a seminar of sixty people. Looking at the graduate class of PhDs, there has been a fair amount of women. Not all of them stay, but I hope that is changing over time. It is a male-dominated field, however, I would say that women do quite well because it’s also a field where you have to communicate well. The art of articulation and communication and bringing even a very complex idea to something people can understand and appreciate requires many different kinds of skills, so I want to see that trend reversal in the future. HMR: We’re students, we’re continuing to educate ourselves; do you have any advice for us? Jin: Be incredibly open. In this new paradigm, to not be able to appreciate multiculturalism and to not be able to take up the perspective from other points of view would be a serious problem to understanding the world, and to be able to contribute to the world. I think that we’re in a great position here at HM to embrace this multiculturalism. And I think a lot of these countries make the wrong policies because they’ve been so inward-looking. If we really adopt this multicultural perspective, first of all there’s going to be less misperception and miscommunication, which is very unfortunate because it doesn’t do anyone any good. So I think being very open and being ready to appreciate other perspectives is very valuable, and will help a great deal in the future and really benefit enormously from that. Really develop passion as a student. No matter what you do, you don’t have to be good at everything. But it’s important to develop a passion, and passion is what will sustain the desire to learn and the desire to make a difference, because you’re really passionate about it. Lastly, learn from your peers. These are the three things I would recommend. HMR


Science & Tech.

Science &&Tech Science Tech.


acebook, computers, and cell-phones, especially smart phones, are a part of our daily lives. Walking through the halls of Horace Mann, you come across a large percentage of students walking while texting, talking on their phones, or looking at Facebook. These activities have serious positive and negative effects on our everyday lives. Electronics have a negative effect, as they can be bad for our health and distance one from real life by living life through the Internet. Despite this, they have the positive effect of making our lives easier and faster, and help us reach out to friends in different states or countries. Computers and cell-phones are serious everyday distractions for the average teenager. I personally can relate knowing that my Facebook, Youtube, AIM Messanger account, and I-Phone are all huge distractions for me. To the average teenager, there are bigger ‘dangers’ than the electronics that they adore so much.


Scientists, however, think differently. Research has shown that cell phones and computers release radiation that can be bad for our health over time. A large amount of radiation is emitted by electronics as simple as a pair of headphones. Headphones give off an amount of radiation that is harmful even at a distance, however; when they are on your head, their level of radiation is extraordinarily harmful for anyone’s health. Computer monitors also emit a large amount of radiation through their sides and back. Given the amount of time that an average person spends at his or her computer each day, this poses quite a health hazard. Doctors suggest that in order to reduce the amount of radiation that one’s body absorbs daily, one should sit at least 30 inches from a computer screen. Doctors also suggest to shut off one’s computer at night in order to reduce the amount of radiation absorbed daily. Health risks are not the only negative effects that result from excessive com-

puter and phone usage. The other, more obvious, negative effect is that electronics limit human interaction. With electronics, people do not need to interact physically in order to talk to each other. This practice distances us from people, and there is a growing fear that in generations to come people will only have computerbased interactions with each other. As apparent, the negative effects that come along with electronics are scary enough to sometimes override the positive effects. Computers and cell-phones, however, are not necessarily ‘bad’ things. They are actually quite useful and helpful for everyday life. Computers help us do things such as connect to people in different countries, write a history essay, and make things come alive. Programs such as Sketchpad help people turn math into objects and draw things that are nearly impossible to create by hand. Facebook is not simply an “addictive” website that purportedly helps students procrastiThe Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Science & Tech.

An Addiction to Instantaneous Information An analysis of the positives and negatives of humans’ access to instant information in the Age of Technology

hannah davidoff nate. It is a way to connect to people all around the world. I myself have friends in Israel whom I can only talk to through the use of Facebook or Skype. In addition to being social tools, the computer and the Internet are also personal encyclopedias. A computer gives one easy access to everything one needs, and is great for everything from researching for a history paper to searching for movie times. In short, computers are our present and our future. Perhaps computers might one day control everything humans currently do, and perhaps this will be for the better. Tasks will become quicker and easier to do, information will be quicker and easier to learn, and one’s social life will be easier to stay connected to. Recently, Apple released the iPhone 4S with the new ‘toy’ Siri, one’s own personal computer secretary. By speaking

into one’s iPhone’s microphone, Siri answers questions, plays music, and gives directions and weather updates, among other useful applications. Siri does not just complete the task at hand, but also speaks back to the user. Like any electronic device, Siri has many positive and negative effects. The negative effect of Siri is that it encourages obsessive use of the iPhone, which poses negative health risks. Despite the negative consequences of using it, Siri has many positive consequences as well, chiefly that of making daily organization and life easier. It delivers fast, easy, information that can help one in everyday life. Siri serves as a perfect example of the possible positives and negatives an electronic can have. Why, then, is Facebook considered so addictive? How come it is highly adored by people of all age groups? Research

has compared Facebook to alcohol or a drug on the basis that it has similar potential for being addictive. When one is addicted to alcohol or drugs, one’s dopamine senses are increased, leaving one to crave more. Researchers say that people’s addiction to Facebook works like that in many ways. Others say that Facebook’s attraction to people is stymied by a lack of physical social life or boredom. When one is bored, Facebook is a popular tool to help relax one and stimulate. Electronics can have positive and negative consequences. Computers and cell-phones can cause distant friendships and poor health. However, they can also create an ease of access to information and make long-distance relationships more convenient. Computers can be addictive and destructive, yet helpful and convenient at the same time. HMR

A Facebook World: The bright regions on this map indicate the volume of Facebook uasge around the globe.

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2


Science & Tech.

Apple’s Next Big Bite


matthew harpe

he opening of Apple’s Upper West Side Retail Store on 67th and Broadway marked the company’s fourth store located in Manhattan. It seemed monumental, representing the ever-increasing popularity of the brand and New Yorkers’ patronage and passion for Apple’s products. However, in a mere three years since the opening of the first Apple Retail Store in China, Shanghai just added its third store, joining the four preexisting ones that are spread between Beijing and Shanghai. More remarkable though, is the fact that these four stores are the four highest grossing and most visited Apple stores in the world, all of which surpass even Apple’s prestigious 5th Avenue Flagship Store. Apple’s Third Quarter sales in China this year amounted to $3.8 billion; 6-fold of what it was just one year ago. To put that in perspective, that’s more revenue than Motorola’s mobile phone and tablet division made in global revenue in the second quarter of 2011. What has enabled Apple to become a successful and powerful player in the Chinese market in only one year can be


How China has Emerged as Apple’s Second Biggest Market displayed in the following quote from Wang Shangyan, a quintessential example of Apple’s new Chinese customers. “I have many Apple products [but] I don’t have an iPhone but I’m waiting for the fifth generation. I will come to the Apple Store to buy it; it doesn’t matter how much it costs.” One of the major dilemmas companies in China have faced is counterfeiting, and Apple has certainty experienced its fair share of counterfeits, such as the

in 2009. Last year, however, the number of counterfeits halved, while the number of smartphones in use more than doubled. This increase in purchasing genuine phones, especially Apple products, is partly a result of the Chinese concept of face, comparable to that of the western idea of reputation. With the average Chinese citizen becoming wealthier and the price of smartphones only decreasing, many Chinese can now focus on having the most up-to-date, sleekest devices on

More remarkable though, is the fact that these four stores are the four highest grossing, and most visited Apple stores in the world, all of which even surpass Apple’s prestigious 5th Avenue Flagship Store. HiPhone 4. However Apple has been able to combat this problem of counterfeiting, as evidenced by both their sales growth and size, a success not many other companies have experienced. According to the Los Angeles Times, in 2007, approximately 48 million knockoff phones were ordered in China, compared to the 52 million active smartphones in China

the market. Furthermore, Apple is able to sell its products for double the price of a top-of-the-line competitor, such as Google’s Android smartphones. This is due to the largeappeal they hold because of their popularity in the Western world, thus making them a status symbol of sorts within the middle class. For the past 5 years, Google has

The Horace Mann Review | Vol. XXI

Science & Tech. tried, without success, to bring its Internet products to China. The Chinese government’s restrictions and a rough partnership have prevented Google from becoming a major player in the Chinese market. The Chinese government’s regulations have disabled many foreign companies from succeeding there. Apple, however, is an exception. The company doesn’t compete with any of China’s government-owned companies, and the iPhone is solely available on the government run service provider, greatly profiting the government. With few problems from the Chinese government, Apple has yet again escaped a predicament that holds back many other companies, such as Google, from enjoying the same success. Apple’s problems with counterfeits arose again recently when fake Apple stores, almost identical to the real retail stores, popped up around China in places where no licensed Apple stores exists. According to the International Business Times, almost half of the over one million iPads sold in China were from unauthorized retailers. These stores sell real Apple products that are smuggled into China, therefore evading trade tariffs and taxes. However, and luckily for Apple, the Chinese government has quickly responded in shutting down these illegal retailers. Apple’s foray into China has proved to be greatly successful. Apple has done what Google and Facebook cannot do: become No. 1 in China. The question now is: how much more successful can Apple be in China?

The Horace Mann Review | Issue 2

To start, Apple’s retail locations only exist in two cities, Shanghai and Bejing, even though China has almost 100 cities with a population of one million or greater. By comparison the U.S. has fewer than 10 cities with more than one million people, and yet almost 250 Apple retail stores exist nationwide; a representation of the untapped potential in China. And in fact, Apple is already planning many, many more stores in China, and this greater outreach will help in both crushing the counterfeit market and in increasing Apple’s profitability in China. Apple’s good fortune in China looks to continue for many more years. In

The success of Apple’s entrance into China can be used as a model for other emerging markets. According to Credit Suisse equity reports, last year, approximately 19% of Apple’s sales came from emerging markets, while this year almost 15% of sales came from China. Other than China, Apple has almost no influence in other emerging markets, while competitors such as RIM, Microsoft, Nokia, Sony, and Samsung all have greater sales exposure in emerging markets. By extending its reach into these markets, Apple could see its revenues skyrocket. If people with disposable incomes of $30 thousand or more, adjusted to the pur-

In short, even without the great mind of Steve Jobs to create and revolutionize the technological world, for Apple, life is still sweet. North America there are over 160 million people with disposable incomes of $30K or more, according to a report by Credit Suisse. Chinese with the same disposable income, spend almost 40% more per capita on Apple products than North Americans. Apple is already well on its way to making China one of its biggest markets, and the next step is to expand its reach and to wait for the Chinese middle class to become even wealthier. According to Credit Suisse estimates, Apple’s revenues from by 2015 will be approximately $28 billion, almost 2.5 times what this years revenues from China are expected to be.

chasing power rate, spent as much per capita as North Americans with the same disposable incomes did this year, Apple’s revenues would increase by $70 billion -more than Apple’s global revenues combined last year. The potential in numbers is staggering. In short, even without the great mind of Steve Jobs to create and revolutionize the technological world, for Apple, life is still sweet. Apple’s potential in China and other emerging markets is still enormous, and It is to no surprise that Apple was recently named Forbes’ most valuable company in the world. HMR


Issue 2 - A Democratic Shift