September 23, 2011

The Millionaire Tax & The Hikers Go Free

For all the fellows and ladies,
I'm that 80's baby,
With a better rating than Tom Brady,
A brainiac on the track, that's crazy,

All the bullies better autumn back,
If I make a milli (a milli) what taxes should I pay on that?
Obama says now the rich pay a lower rate,
Than the middle class, so he proposed to make,
Millionaires pay more, GOP says no,
They don't think more taxes are the way to go.
Don't tell Ichabod Crane,
But fewer pumpkins might be coming his way.
Hurricane Irene tore up the map,
And I guess the jack-o-lanterns got jacked.

At the air show in Reno, it was lethal,
A plane crashed in the crowd, killed a dozen people.
It's getting out of hand, a typhoon damaged Japan,
Where the tsunami already ripped up the power plants.
In the Middle East, new news everyday,
Citizens in Yemen? Yeah they stormed a base.
Palestinians want a state of their own,
But at the U.N. the U.S. will block the vote
Are Arab nations pleased? The answer's no,
But America and Israel are really close.

Don't Ask, Don't Tell is buh-bye,
Americans can come out and serve with pride.
Finally the hikers in Iran got freed!
They weren't spies, those charges were really weak.
A sixteen-year-old did something really sweet,
She hit the fairway, had all the other golfers beat.
Protesters got arrested down on Wall Street,
They say the system is rigged, it's all greed.

Now it's time for us to jet, knaw-mean?
For the win, Flocabulary on your team.

Tom Brady, quarterback for the New England Patriots, is already setting records just two games into the season. He has thrown for nearly 1,000 yards and has the highest QB rating in the league. Do you think Tom Brady will be able to maintain his rating for the whole season? Learn more.

President Obama is trying to increase taxes for millionaires to help close the national deficit. Currently, many wealthy Americans pay a smaller percentage of their income in taxes than the middle class. Warren Buffett, the third wealthiest person in the world, recently said that he wants to pay more taxes. Republicans in Congress, however, point out that the total amount that the rich pay is more than the middle class. They don't think tax increases are a good idea. Do you think Congress should increase the tax rate for the wealthy? Learn more .

Ichabod Crane is the main character in Washington Irving's story The Legend of Sleepy Hollow . He's a bumbling school teacher who thinks that he's being haunted by a headless horseman. After he thinks the horseman throws his head at him, Ichabod runs out of town, never to be seen again. But the next day, people just find a smashed pumpkin instead a severed head. So Ichabod might have been a little crazy... Read the original short story.

As a result of damages from Hurricane Irene, a pumpkin shortage might be coming this Halloween. Some pumpkin farmers lost their entire crop in the storm. So if you want to carve a jack-o-lantern next month, you may have to pay a premium. What are other long-term effects of Hurricane Irene? Learn more.

Tragedy struck at a Reno air race last week. A plane from the 1940s crashed into the VIP section of the stands. The crash left a dozen people dead and a crater in the ground. Though 20 pilots have been killed in the last 47 years of the race, this is the first time that spectators were killed. Considering the clear dangers of the sport, why do you think pilots continue to compete? Learn more .

A typhoon is the name for a hurricane that happens in the Pacific rather than the Atlantic. Typhoon Roke hit Tokyo on Wednesday, disrupting city life with blackouts and flooding. The storm moved on toward Fukushima, where a tsunami caused nuclear distruction earlier this year. But the typhoon isn't expected to cause further harm to the recovery efforts in Fukushima. How can major cities like Tokyo prepare for natural disasters? Learn more .

Protesters stormed a military base on Monday in an effort to gain power from the current Yemen government. Though the protesters were unarmed, government forces fired on the crowds killing at least 50 people and injuring 1,000. The international community denounced President Ali Abdullah Saleh's decision to fire on the protesters, and many believe that his regime will soon crumble. Why do you think protesters are willing to risk their lives to change the government? Learn more .

Palestinians are planning to submit an application to become a full member of the United Nations on Friday. If the U.N. approves their membership, Palestine will be one step closer to becoming an official state. A U.N. membership is unlikely, however, because the United States is planning to veto the application. The U.S. and Israel have argued that Palestine must negotiate directly with Israel to become a state. Do you think Palestine should become a state? Learn more .

The U.S. military ended its "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy on Tuesday. Before the repeal, gay and lesbian service members could be discharged from the military for revealing their sexual orientation. After years of fighting the discriminatory policy, gay and lesbian troops can now serve openly without fear of losing their jobs. Why do you think it took so long to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"? Learn more .

We've been covering this story for the last few Week in Raps, and we're happy to report that the two American hikers were freed from jail in Iran. They were arrested two years ago as alleged spies when they mistakenly crossed the Iranian border while hiking. After two years of political turmoil over their arrest and imprisonment, they were finally able to greet their families. The families said in a statement, "Today can only be described as the best day of our lives." What challenges do you think the two freed hikers will face in the days ahead? Learn more .

Lexi Thompson, a sixteen-year-old golfer, won the Navistar LPGA Classic on Sunday, making her the youngest LPGA tournament winner ever. But because she isn't yet 18, the LPGA says she needs to complete qualifying school to become an official member. Do you think Lexi Thompson should be required to complete qualifying school to gain a full membership to the LPGA? Learn more .

Hundreds of people swarmed Wall Street in New York City to protest connections between powerful financial firms and lawmakers in Washington, D.C. They believe that the firms' are unfairly able to influence laws that benefit the wealthy by contributing to congressional campaigns and paying for lobbyists. Seven protesters were arrested. Do you think that financial firms should be able to contribute to political campaigns? Learn more.
According to President Obama, what group of people should be paying more taxes?
What famous autumn crop did Hurricane Irene damage?
What happened at the air show in Reno?
A plane crashed into the crowd.
What type of storm hit Japan this week?
A typhoon
In what Middle Eastern country did protesters storm a base?
What region is petitioning the U.N. to become a recognized state?
Who can now serve openly in the military after the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"?
Gay and lesbian service members
The youngest woman ever just won an LPGA tournament. How old is she?
Where did hundreds of people protest financial firms' ties to the government?
Wall Street
What team is Flocabulary on?
Your team. (Of course.) Catch you next week!

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