Monday, December 14, 2009

Thesis Paragraph

Over the past decades, the United States government maintained a certain foreign policy towards other countries in an attempt to benefit themselves. Debates have been made towards the policy that the U.S was using to control other nations, but it wasn't an obstacle for the U.S government. The U.S government has been taking advantages of other countries in need, to make profits for themselves. Many of the countries suffer a relapse after being involved with the United States; Jamaica's economy is no exception to what the United States have done to be rich. The United State's connection to Jamaica began in the 1960s (with Jamaica's immigration. After the Jamaicans became poor, they ran out of business and needed some money, so they Jamaican government went to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for help. And afterwards, they couldn't payback the debt, and kept borrowing from the IMF and agreeing to the policies placed by the U.S government on the IMF loans.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

First Paragraphy

Once upon a time, in a country where the main business and source of income was by agriculture (banana plantation), the people ran out of money, and they needed some help, so they ran to a second country for help. The second country saw how bad the first country needed help and decided to take advantage of them. All these started in the early 1900s, and the first country is Jamaica, while the second country is the United States. The U.S relationship to Jamaica has been a relationship of culture, as well as economic dominance. The U.S have been living on the principles of "social Darwinism" which is basically "survival of the fittest", and the United States decided to take advantage of Jamaica and live off them. As a result, Jamaica was in the midst of being heavily indebted to the United States. And when the U.S government saw that the Jamaicans still needed some more money for their economy, they let the Jamaicans borrow money from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), on the account that they would agree to the terms and conditions of the U.S which was that the Jamaicans would let the U.S compete with them in the market, and let the U.S sell cheaper products than them, and the Jamaicans shouldn't accept any subsidies from anyone. In the film Life and debt, the director Stephanie Black explained and gave vivid accounts of what had happened when the United States took over Jamaica's economy. She said how the U.S made were unfair, and made the Jamaicans go out of business by selling cheaper products than them (in order to eliminate competitions, and raise the prices of their products when there are no Jamaicans to compete in the economy with them). The United States used many methods of manipulation to achieve their aim, and there was nothing the Jamaican government could do about it, instead they kept lending some more money from the IMF. The IMF (headed by the United States) would lend money to countries, and add some

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Annonated Biography

(1) Klein, Naomi. "The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism." New York: Henry Holt, and Company 2007. Print.

The author talks about how the U.S government either puts a country in a situation of "shock" (meaning disaster or conflict) and takes advantage of the country to get whatever the United States wants out of that country. The author also describes the strategies used by the government on other countries to justify it's actions. Klein also says how the method started by the economists and it was later adopted by the American government and used as a policy towards other less-privileged countries.

(2) Life and Debt. Dir. Stephanie Black. Music by Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Sizzla, Buju Banton,Ziggy Marley etc. New Yorker Films Artwork. 2003. DVD.

The film shows how Jamaica kept being indebted to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the debt kept increasing the Jamaicans had to agree to the terms and conditions of the U.S government if they still needed more money from the IMF. The film also shows how the U.S government took over the economy of Jamaica and made the Jamaican products less valuable, thereby making the Jamaicans run out of business and loose their jobs. The Film has samples from "A small Place" and the narrator Jamaica kincaid also talks about the life in Jamaica as a tourists, and how the tourists won't really know what's wrong with Jamaica and the economy.

(3) Thomas, Deborah A. "The Emergence of Modern Blackness in Jamaica." Deborah A.
Thomas: Modern Blackness. NACLA Report on the Americas. Nov/Dec2005.
Vol. 39 Issue 3 p30-35. 6p, 3 bw. Print.

The article focuses on the emergence of modern blackness in Jamaica. Jamaica is famous for it's plantation economy, and after World War II, Jamaicans have had many different colonial experiences. Great Britain took control of Jamaica from Spain. The article is firmly rooted in the experiences of the majority of Jamaica's population. It also talks about how the "ghetto women" are being treated, and how the Jamaican Prime Minister decided to re-instate Proclamation Day
as holiday, and how many Jamaicans think their culture influenced the American culture.

(5) "Jamaica to seek more than a billion dollars from IMF." BBC Monitoring Latin America Caribbean Media Corporation news. July 22, 2009 Wednesday.

This article of the newspaper shows how the Jamaicans were trying to get loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), despite being heavily indebted to them in the past years. The Jamaicans said they wouldn't borrow money from the IMF anymore since they couldn't pay back, but recently, they are still seeking help from the IMF by asking for loans (worth a billion dollars). The Jamaican economy is so low that they now depend on the IMF for survival.

(6). Thomas-Hope, Elizabeth. "Return migration to Jamaica and its development
potential." International Migration, 1999 1st Quarter, Vol. 37 Issue 1, p183, 25p, 3
charts. Article

This article discusses the need for the Jamaican government to recruit Jamaican workers living abroad, also showed that the return migration to Jamaica is associated with the existence and nature of some psychological linkages established between migrant workers and their home country. United States and Great Britain as top sources of return migrants. The article also shows the terms and conditions, and all the alluring programs that the Jamaican government implemented to get the Jamaicans living abroad to come back and start living in their home countries once again, even though adapting wouldn't be so easy.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

(Prewriting) Research Brainstorm

My Country: Jamaica

Why are you interested in this country and its relationship to the U.S.?
- I am interested in this country because I definitely would like to know how they were severly indebted to the United Stated, and how they were indirectly molested by the Americans.. Jamaica has always been a poor country, but as time passed, they debts were increasing, until the Jamaicans were certain that they could no longer pay back.

What has struck you about its history and relationship to the United States from our readings, and from other knowledge and experience you may have?
-What has struck me is what Naomi Klein revealed about the "shock doctrine", how the United States takes advantage of a country in a poor situation, and benefit from them. Klein gave lots of examples, and Jamaica is one of them. The Jamaicans foolishly accepted more money from the United States, thinking that the U.S govt. was lending it's money and trying to help them, but they (Jamaicans) had no idea it that they would become a victim of the shock doctrine.

Based on your reading and knowledge so far, do you think the U.S.'s relationship with this country supports the thesis "The United States is an imperial power"?
-HELL YAH, based on my readings the U.S were pretending to help the other country, but they ended up as a burden to the other country.

What dont you know that you want to find out?
-Why the Jamaicans could not sell thier products cheaper and boycott the american products in order to avoid imperialism, and I would definitely want to know if the Jamaican president was educated (cuz if they were given proper education, they wouldn't have folded their hands and watch their country end up in a state of shock).

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Our Brand Is Crisis

Latin American leaders have been targeted and accused of "anti-americanism" Mark Engler argued that ever since the United States came in power, they have been looking for enemies, and playing the "blame game" with the Latin American leaders.
According to "", "Anti-Americanism" is being opposed to the
government, official policies, or people of the United States. So what the U.S govt. does is to look for the leaders that could threaten their power, and try to get rid of them.In this case, accusing Evo Morales and other new leaders of Latin America of being anti-american is basically accussing him of hating anything that has to do with the United States.
Merriam-Webster dictionary describes "populism" as a member of a political party claiming to represent the common people. This means Morales would also favor the people (like granting them more job opportunities, less taxes, e.t.c), when he becomes president. He (Morales) was accused of representing a dangerous form of populism, which means he woulld probably neglect the people when he gets in power.. And the U.S government did it, just to paint a bad image of the Latin American leaders.
And thirdly, Wikipedia describes demagoguery as a strategy for gaining political power by appealing to the emotions, fears and expectations of the public. All these accusations paint a bad image of Morales, and shows that if he gets in power, he wouldn't fulfill his promises.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Revision Brainstorm

What is my thesis?- A fast Food restaurant can NEVER be a symbol of power, it could be a decoy, to distract people (protesters) from the real source of income (oil companies)...the so-called fast food restaurants are only famous and noticable, but they don't produce much of an income.

"If I hadn't written this, would I have convinced myself of this thesis? What would I be skeptical about?- If i hadn't written this, i would be skeptical about the fast food restaurants becoming the main source of America's succes and imcome. I would have convinced myself that the fast food restaurants are wildly known my the people, so there would also serve as the means of income.
If I hadn't written this, my thesis would have remained thesame, I still hold my arguement.

Does my evidence support my thesis?-.
My evidence severely supports my thesis. I contradict with any author that says fast food restaurants are the main source of income, because I can still prove that oil companies are.

Where am I being vague?-no me!

What have I left out?-. Absolutely nothing, I'm cool, I gave all the neccessary informations about what needs to be known....on second thought, I think I've left out mark Engler's argument, and how basically oppose it, and why I think his argument isn't true.

How can I make what I'm saying more interesting?- I can make whatever I'm saying more intersting by me giving more examples and stories, instead of just emphasizing on my arguments alone, so that my writing doesn't becomes less interesting.
And I would also be giving my works cited.

What parts of the text(s) are important that I haven't dealt with?-
I basically haven't dealt with the fact that U.S closed down about a dozen McDonald's in England, because they were scared of more protesting, and the U.S still struggles with Iraq over oil (even after the capture and death of Saddam Hussein).

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Revised Paragraph

Over the past decades, places that have been thought and seen as important keeps changing. Corporations and big businesses like oil companies have been the primary target for protesters to be rebelling against the United State imperialism. In "Latin America in Revolt," Mark Engler (the author) argued that fast food restaurants is a symbol of America's power, and the main source of income. But McDonald's was never a symbol of the American power. However, as protesters saw that
American fast food restaurants (Mcdonald's) were increasing abroad, they saw McDonald's was the new target for vandalism as a sign of their opposition to America's domination.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Video of Naomi Klein on the Colbert Report

-In this video, Stephan Colbert pretends to defend making money off disasters. Despite his jokes, Klein gets her argument across. Notice the connection she makes to Hurricane Katrina. How do you think this argument relates to our overall course theme of America's place in the world?

-Before answering the question, I would like to say Naomi Klein is freakin' cute...I was expecting to see some old lady. And she must have a lot of guts to expose the American government's corruption.

-That's what America actually do, they indirectly put people in shock, so they can get whatever they want from off the people. The American government sees that whenever people look unto them in the time of trouble, they have a chance to prove their authority, and take advantage to enrich themselves. This is an act of selfishness, and that's how America's place in the world is today. Every international affairs America involves itself with is for her selfish reasons.

Thursday, October 8, 2009


What was your experience in writing the first essay like? How does it compare to the kinds of writing you've done in or out of the classroom before? What do you think would help you become a stronger writer?

My first essay was freaking awesome, I my biggest problem is actually with the conclusion. I always have a hard time writing the conclusions. But whenever I write an essay, I really consider what my arguement would be about. But this essay was alot easier (we didn't' even have to list where our work was cited); in other essays, we had to get the details of where we got our information from.
To become a strong writer, I think I would need to read more essay very often, visit the writting center more often, and probably see Miss Tanenbaum. =)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Life and Debt

Life and Debt is a perfect example of colonialism. The Jamaicans were indebted to the United States, and these debts kept on increasing. The Americans lend some money to the Jamaicans, and gave them conditions that the Jamaicans wouldn't place tariffs on the American goods being imported to Jamaica, there should be no subsidies, and the Americans also gave some other conditions, so they're products would be cheaper than that of the Jamaicans.
The Americans did all that so they could get the upper hand in the economy, and then dominate the Jamaicans economically so that they could be a colony of Americans.
There are so many forms of colonialism, a country can have a colony through war (violence), while some can have a colony by threats. The most peaceful way to colonize is through the economy.

The Americans had the upper hand, because the Jamaicans were heavily indebted to the Americans, and they were too poor to pay back the money. So the Americans started imposing their own rules and regulations, in they economy. Eventually they gained complete control of the Jamaican economy and used it as a way to dominate the Jamaicans, and be incharge.
Part of the actions that the Americans took was to sell their products cheaper so that the Jamaicans would run out of business.
If the Jamiacans want to challenge it, they have two options: It's either they boycott all American products or they sell their own products cheaper.

The connections between this film and other cluster is "A small place" by Jamaica Kincaid. Some of the quotes in the story were also mentioned in the film, and for a second I thought it was the movies of the book.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

I really felt bad for the Mexicans, The whole thing was annoying, I mean why won't those Americans leave the Mexicans alone? worst of all, there was this fat lady who was just making racial speeches and I really felt that the lady Margret never liked none Americans. Since she's been in America her whole life, she doesn't know what it feels like to go to another country and be treated like sh*t.