Understanding real English
We've heard from President Obama. Now practice your listening with his opponent, Governor Mitt Romney, in this excerpt from the first presidential debate.
Listening to Romney
You can hear President Obama by clicking here: http://bit.ly/WNjQ1j
The November 6 US presidential election is rapidly approaching and Republican candidate Mitt Romney is doing much better than many experts had expected. Since the US economy is the biggest issue in the campaign, Romney's business background is helping him. Listen to him explain how he plans to cut the US budget deficit.
opponent – someone who is competing against you ฝ่ายตรงข้าม
candidate – a person who is trying to be elected ผู้สมัครรับเลือกตั้ง
issue – a subject that people discuss or argue about ประเด็น
campaign – a series of actions intended to produce political or social change การรณรงค์
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 Governor Romney says. You should be able to get the main ideas. Then read the text as you listen.
Click button to listen to Romney and rightclick to download
Here are some of the words and phrases that you will need to know.
moral – relating to right and wrong and the way that people should behave ทางศีลธรรม, เกี่ยวกับความรู้สึกผิดชอบชั่วดี
frankly – in an open, honest, and direct manner อย่างตรงไปตรงมา
generation – a group of people in society who are born and live around the same time รุ่น (คนรุ่นต่างๆ)
massive – very large in size, amount or number ใหญ่โต
burden – a serious or difficult responsibility that you have to deal with ภาระ
interest – the money that a bank or other financial company charges you when you borrow money, or the money it pays you when you keep money in an account ดอกเบี้ย
principal – an amount of money that you lend to somebody or invest to earn interest (principal does not include interest payments) ต้นเงิน, เงินต้น
trillion – the number 1,000,000,000,000 แสนล้าน
rate – the level or speed at which something happens or changes, or the amount or number of times it happens or changes in a particular period อัตรา
encourage – to cause someone to be more likely to happy กระตุ้น
eliminate – to get rid of completely กำจัดหรือขจัดให้หมดไป
borrow – to take money from a bank, financial organisation, person, etc. and pay it back over a period of time ยืม
subsidy – an amount of money that a government or organisation pays to help to reduce the cost of a product or service เงินชดเชยที่รัฐเป็นผู้จ่ายให้
respect – a feeling of admiration that you have for someone because of their personal qualities, their achievements, or their status, and that you show by treating them in a polite and kind way ความเคารพ, ความนับถือ
moderator – a person whose job is to make sure that a discussion or a debate is fair ผู้ดำเนินการอภิปราย
PBS – Public Broadcasting System, radio and television funded partly by the US government
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
currently – at this time; now ในปัจจุบัน
state – government รัฐบาล
efficient – effective and well organized มีประสิทธิภาพ
attrition – the process of reducing the number of people who are employed by an organisation by, for example, not replacing people who leave their jobs การลดขนาดหรือจำนวน (แรงงาน, คน)
balanced – (of a budget) spending is not more than money received งบประมาณให้สมดุล
prior – before ก่อนหน้า
combined – counted together รวมกัน
I think it's not just an economic issue, I think it's a moral issue. I think it's, frankly, not moral for my generation to keep spending massively more than we take in, knowing those burdens are going to be passed on to the next generation and they're going to be paying the interest and the principal all their lives.
And the amount of debt we're adding, at a trillion a year, is simply not moral.
So how do we deal with it? Well, mathematically, there are three ways that you can cut a deficit. One, of course, is to raise taxes. Number two is to cut spending. And number is to grow the economy, because if more people work in a growing economy, they're paying taxes, and you can get the job done that way.
The presidents would – president would prefer raising taxes. I understand. The problem with raising taxes is that it slows down the rate of growth. And you could never quite get the job done. I want to lower spending and encourage economic growth at the same time.
What things would I cut from spending? Well, first of all, I will eliminate all programs by this test, if they don't pass it: Is the program so critical it's worth borrowing money from China to pay for it? And if not, I'll get rid of it. Obamacare's on my list.
I apologize, Mr. President. I use that term with all respect, by the way.
OBAMA: I like it.
ROMNEY: Good. OK, good. So I'll get rid of that.
I'm sorry, Jim (Lehrer, the moderator, who also works for PBS), I'm going to stop the subsidy to PBS. I'm going to stop other things. I like PBS, I love Big Bird. Actually like you, too. But I'm not going to -- I'm not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for. That's number one.
Number two, I'll take programs that are currently good programs but I think could be run more efficiently at the state level and send them to the state.
Number three, I'll make government more efficient and to cut back the number of employees, combine some agencies and departments. My cutbacks will be done through attrition, by the way.
This is the approach we have to take to get America to a balanced budget.
The president said he'd cut the deficit in half. Unfortunately, he doubled it. Trillion-dollar deficits for the last four years. The president's put it in place as much public debt – almost as much debt held by the public as all prior presidents combined.
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