Tag Archives: Oren Paisner

How Geographers Look at Economic and Social Development.

Oren Paisner

Professor Bullen

Final Project

12/2/2013

How Geographers Look At Economic and Social Development

            One of the most amazing things that modern society offers is the convenience of goods. Goods were not always this easy to come by. As a matter of fact, before the industrial revolution if you wanted a new winter jacket you had to make it yourself. That is why it is important to know how economic and social development works and how it is measured since it influences the quality of life for people who are subject to it. Geographers correlate economic and social development to the production of services, concentration of global cities, and concentration of assets from other countries.

It is interesting to see how the percentage of GDP from services plays into determining whether a country is economically and socially developed. Countries like Japan, USA, Australia, Great Britain, etc. are by most people’s standards very economically and socially developed. One thing they have in common is that 70% of their GDP comes from services (Rubenstein, 431). It is safe to say that countries with economies derived mostly from services are more economically and socially developed.

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Another characteristic that many developed countries share is that they either have global cities within them or are near a large concentration of global cities. It is interesting to note that the highest concentration of global cities is in Western Europe (21stcentech.com). Western Europe happens to be one of the most highly developed regions in the world. Investors and businesses are attracted to such a region because they have to do business there in order to successfully compete with each other. The amount of money that comes with the onslaught of investors and businesses pouring into the region in return adds to the development of that country when the money that is being made gets taxed.

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A lot of countries that aren’t very socially and economically developed seem to attract a lot of investors looking to launder their money and get away with paying significantly less taxes. Offshore financial centers such as the islands of Montserrat, Mauritius, Seychelles, and others are countries that are almost entirely dependent on those kinds of foreign investors (Rubenstein, 444).  If those countries developed higher taxes and stricter banking laws, there economies would completely collapse.

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Social and Economic development of countries are comprised of a multitude of factors very often unique to each other. It is important to understand what makes up those factors to better understand any country.

Works Cited

http://www.21stcentech.com/society-politics-part-4-change/

Rubenstein, James M. The Cultural Landscape: An Introduction to Human Geography. Upper _____Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall, 2005. Print.

Edited by: Kyra, Ellie and Jacob

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Pop Culture: The Manna of Capitalism.

Oren Paisner

11/18/2013

Alex Bullen

Human Geography

Pop Culture: The Manna of Capitalism

            Since the invention of the Television, explosions and high stakes shoot outs have been reaching the masses. But even before television pop culture had been distributed by means of radio, newspaper, silent films, etc. Since then, popular culture has taken on new forms and has reached a whole new audience with the emergence of social media. Popular Culture has many ways of spreading its ideas and goods from one place to another.

One good example of how Pop Culture operates is to examine popular clothing styles. In most countries the clothes you wear is usually determined by your occupation or income. (Rubenstein, 116) A lawyer will usually have more stylish clothes then a toll booth operator in Baltimore, Maryland off of I-95. In the case of women’s clothing, (which is a very static complicated dynamic) the popular trend seems to change every year and whoever has more of a disposable income will be able to update their wardrobe accordingly. With the aid of advertising in magazines, television, and social media popular clothing finds its way to the consumer that can afford it.

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Taking a closer look into television one may notice that it is the major highway for diffusion of popular culture in the world. So much that many undeveloped countries and countries with totalitarian rule will censor a good amount of the television that is primarily produced by countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan. (Rubenstein, 130) Since a lot of these countries’ popular culture television programming is contradictory to many people’s folk culture values, the substitution for the blocked and censored programs would be ones that reinforce the folk culture values. Through the different values of other countries, we understand the limits of popular cultures diffusion through television.

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With the emergence of social media in the past decade, we see a whole new method for advertisers to reach their market and a whole new vehicle for popular culture to get to where it’s going.  Social media is unique in the way that it gives steam to the underdog. In other words, smaller businesses can better advertise what they are offering through social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook or Linked In.(cmswire.com) Beyond social media extending to the rest of the internet, even more steam is given to the underdog when small and medium size businesses can set up shop in the internet and reach customers from all over the world.

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Popular culture will continue to explode and consume a larger following of people than ever before. In return we will see a subtler presence of folk culture which I believe will truly never completely vanish. It is good to embrace change but at the same time we must preserve the traditions of the past.

Works Cited

http://www.cmswire.com/cms/customer-experience/how-smbs-can-improve-content-and-social-media-marketing-strategies-022226.php

Rubenstein, James M. The Cultural Landscape: An Introduction to Human Geography. _____Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall, 2005. Print.

Edited by:  Jacob, Shae and Kishan

Boulder: Where the Water Comes From.

Oren Paisner

11/13/2013

Alex Bullen

Boulder: Where the Water Comes From

            As quoted by Ben Stiller in the movie Zoolander, “water is the essence of moisture, and moisture is the essence of life.” Although it’s a silly quote, there is some truth to it. Water is said to be the most valuable natural resource to humans. Without drinkable water, it is safe to say that the human race and all life would become extinct. Here in Colorado we are lucky to be in a threshold of fresh water that comes straight from accumulated snow in the Rocky Mountains. The town I currently live in, which is Boulder, gets its water from multiple sources.

40% of Boulders water comes from the Barker Reservoir which is fueled by the Middle Boulder Creek (biggreenboulder.com). The Barker Reservoir is situated right in the town of Nederland. Using google maps I followed the trail of the Middle Boulder Creek all the way to the continental divide at the base of Mt. Neva, where there are two other reservoirs which Google Maps failed to provide the names of (googlemaps.com).

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Another 40% of Boulders water comes from the Silver Lake watershed (biggreenboulder.com). This watershed originates at the base of South Arapahoe Peak and is also an accumulation of snowfall that gets trapped into a series of lakes and reservoirs via the North Boulder Creek one of them being Silver Lake. The North Boulder Creek goes South-east from that point until it meets up with the Boulder Creek which simply goes down the Boulder Canyon into the city of Boulder.

The last 20% of Boulders water comes from the Boulder Reservoir which is supplied by the Boulder Feeder Canal (biggreenboulder.com). The Boulder Reservoir encompasses nine square miles and is used for storing drinking water, swimming, fishing, boating, etc. The Boulder reservoir was built in 1955 along with the construction of the Boulder Feeder Canal by the Colorado Big Thompson and Windy Gap projects (bouldercolorado.gov).

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Water is the most sacred limited resource on earth to us humans and it is important that we protect it. That is why it is useful to understand where our water comes from so we can also be able to spot the warning signs of something negatively affecting our drinking water. It takes citizens like you and I doing their part to ensure a safer, healthier community.

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Edited by: Nathan, Kyra and Jenna

How Political Movements Form Around Language and Ethnicity.

Oren Paisner

Professor Bullen

Final Project

12/2/2013

How Political Movements Form Around Language and Ethnicity

            Throughout the history of human kind there has been struggle between different cultures and ethnicities. A good example of this, the ethnic cleansing that took place in Kosovo, demonstrates exactly what happens when there is a clash of political ideas in a country. Political movements form around language, ethnicity, and religion because of the beliefs that are associated with them.

Religion seems to be a strong motivator for political movements in a lot of countries. When China invaded Tibet in 1951 and installed a communist dictatorship in 1953, they destroyed many monasteries and temples. They did this to the Tibetans to show them who was boss. In this case, the political movement of the Chinese communist regime formed from the belief that Tibetan Buddhism was a religion that cultivated opposition to Chinese interests.

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Political movements can also form around language. In the Canadian province of Quebec there is a separatist movement trying to make Quebec an independent country. A significant reason for this is that the main language in the province of Quebec is French. In the rest of Canada, English is the primary language.  Jane Jacobs, an American-Canadian journalist comments that “Canadians who are indifferent to the question of Quebec separatism are likely either to identify primarily with their own province, such as Newfoundland or British Colombia, or else to identify with a Canada which -for all they care emotionally- may or may not include Quebec.” (Excerpt of the Question of Separatism) This idea ties in with political movements forming around language because the Canadian provinces that are indifferent to the Separatism are dominantly English speaking provinces.

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Ethnicity can be and often is a huge motivator for political movements. Kosovo underwent ethnic turmoil after the breakup of Yugoslavia which resulted in lots of violence and many deaths. “At its peak in 1999 Serb ethnic cleansing had forced 750,000 of Kosovo’s 2 million ethnic Albanian residents from their homes, mostly to camps in Albania.” (Rubenstein, 251) This clearly demonstrates how the desire for less ethnic diversity can motivate a political movement to try and reach that goal by means of violence.

Ethnicity, religion and language don’t only cause political movements to do unspeakable things, but often they bring people together in their differences. One of the things I never take for granted is living in a country where people actually bond over the differences they have instead of fighting over those differences. That is why it is important to understand how Ethnicity, Religion and Language influence political movements so that we can do our part as individuals to make sure that those influences are positive.

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Works Cited

http://www.historyguy.com/kosovar_serb_warfare.html. N.p., n.d. Web.

Jacobs, Jane. “Excerpt of The Question of Separatism: Quebec and the Struggle over             ____Sovereignty by Jane Jacobs.” – Independence of Quebec. N.p., 12 Apr. 2011. Web. 02 Dec. 2013.

Rubenstein, James M. The Cultural Landscape: An Introduction to Human Geography. Upper _____Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall, 2005. Print.

“Where Is Tibet?” YoWangducom. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2013.

Edited by: Ellie, Jacob and Kishan