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Listening to Obama

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Practice your listenng with this short excerpt from the second presidential debate when President Obama criticises Governor Romney's tax plans. 

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Listening to Obama

You've been hearing a lot from the US presidential candidates lately and there is a lot more to come in the remaining days before the November 6 election. Let's begin with President Obama's attack on his opponent's tax plan during the second presidential debate. The big issue here is how Governor Romney can reduce the huge US government budget deficit and still cut taxes for the American people.

candidate – a person who is trying to be elected ผู้สมัครรับเลือกตั้ง
opponent
– someone who is competing against you ฝ่ายตรงข้าม
issue – a subject that people discuss or argue about ประเด็น
budget deficit – the amount by which the amount of money received and the amount spent  การขาดดุล

Try listening one or two times to see if you can understand at what President Obama says. You should be able to get the main ideas. Then read the text as you listen.


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Here are some of the words and phrases that you will need to know.

(tax) rate – the percentage of taxes a person pays on the income they earn from work, investments, etc. อัตราภาษี
across the board – involving everyone or everything รวมทั้งทุกคนหรือทุกอย่าง
eliminate – to get rid of completely กำจัดหรือขจัดให้หมดไป
estate tax – inheritance tax taxes paid on money, property, etc. when it is transferred from a person who has died, usually to his/her relatives ภาษีมรดก
corporate – involving large companies  บริษัทใหญ่
tax code – the systems of laws dealing with taxation กฎหมายภาษี
trillion – the number 1,000,000,000,000 แสนล้าน
wealthy – having a large amount of money, land, and other valuable things   ที่มั่งคั่ง ร่ำรวย
(budget) deficit – the amount by which the amount of money received and the amount spent  การขาดดุล
deduction – the process of taking an amount of something, especially money, away from a total, in this case taxes; the amount that is taken away การหักลบ
loophole – a small mistake in an agreement or law which gives someone the chance to avoid having to do something ช่องโหว่ในกฎหมาย, จุดอ่อน, ข้อบกพร่อง
take off the board – to not include something; to take away from consideration ไม่รวม, ไม่พิจารณา
capital gains – profits that you make from selling something, especially company shares or property กำไรส่วนทุน
specifics – the details of something รายละเอียด
Big Bird – a popular character on the children’s show Sesame Street which appears on government sponsored television, something Governor Romney wants to cut money for
funding – money given for a particular purpose  การให้เงินสนับสนุน
Planned Parenthood – a non-profit organisation providing help for parents in planning families and help with medical care for mothers and children
investor – a person or organization that invests money, i.e., uses money with the aim of making a profit from it, for example by buying property or buying shares in a company นักลงทุน
sketchy – not complete or detailed and therefore not very useful คร่าวๆ, ไม่สมบูรณ์,ไม่ครบ


Look, the cost of lowering rates for everybody across the board 20 percent, along with what he also wants to do in terms of eliminating the estate tax, along what he wants to do in terms of corporates changes in the tax code — it costs about $5 trillion. Governor Romney then also wants to spend $2 trillion on additional military programs, even though the military's not asking for them. That's $7 trillion. He also wants to continue the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. That's another trillion dollars. That's $8 trillion.

Now, what he says is he's going to make sure that this doesn't add to the deficit, and he's going to cut middle-class taxes. But when he's asked, how are you going to do it, which deductions, which loopholes are you going to close, he can't tell you. The — the fact that he only has to pay 14 percent on his taxes when a lot of you are paying much higher — you know, he's already taken that off the board. Capital gains are going to continue to be at a low rate, so we — we're not going to get money that way. We haven't heard from the governor any specifics, beyond Big Bird and eliminating funding for Planned Parenthood, in terms of how he pays for that.

Now, Governor Romney was a very successful investor. If somebody came to you, Governor, with a plan that said, here; I want to spend 7 (trillion dollars) or $8 trillion, and then we're going to pay for it, but we can't tell you until maybe after the election how we're going to do it, you wouldn't have taken such a sketchy deal. And neither should you, the American people, because the math doesn't add up.

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