[時事英文] Positive News

[時事英文] Positive News

希望主流媒體能多播放正面的新聞, 讓我們能專注於各界人士的努力和對世界的貢獻。同時我們觀眾也該做個有判別力的閱聽人,多看多種類的新聞建立更廣闊的視野。

今天就讓我們大家一起欣賞僅僅10歲的梅紐因小提琴比賽冠軍李映衡(Christian Li)與11歲的蔡珂宜(Chloe Chua)對於音樂的熱情、專注和不懈的努力! 他們兩位是我的英雄!

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[時事英文] Lottery, a Tax on the Poor? 彩券是一種窮人稅?

[時事英文] Lottery, a Tax on the Poor? 彩券是一種窮人稅?

最近看到多家媒體報導鼓勵大家支持「公益」彩券和運彩,就聯想到之前看過的一些彩券的報導。雖然每個國家的彩券發行的法律、收益的分紅和管理規範都不盡相同,還是可以參考以下美國多家知名報社關於美國彩券的社論和關鍵英文詞彙,希望可以提供同學關於此議題的另一個觀點。

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1. political corruption 政治腐敗
2. raise revenue 提高收入
3. Powerball 強力球,是美國境內發行的彩票
4. dream of wealth 財富的夢想
5. more likely to 更傾向於

The lottery is a particularly awful example of political corruption. Here government is raising revenue by selling the Powerball dream of wealth without work. Studies in a number of states have shown that lottery ticket sales are concentrated in poor communities, that poor people spend a larger portion of their income on tickets and that the poor are more likely to view the lottery as an investment.

–The Washington Post

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6. relatively more 相對更多
7. most avid buyers 最狂熱的買家
8. go out of one’s way 特地
9. punitive taxes 懲罰性的徵稅

Lotteries are (1) regressive taxes on poor people, in that a ticket costs relatively more for a poor person than a rich person, and (2) punitive taxes on the poor and uneducated people who are the most avid buyers. The people who can least afford it are throwing away on average 47 cents on the dollar every time they buy a ticket. And the government, which relies increasingly on the lottery for funding, goes out of its way to tell them it is a good idea.

–BusinessInsider

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10. a 12-figure tax 一個12位數的稅
11. the least fortunate 最不幸的
12. worth of… 值得…
13. dish out 祭出,拿出
14. What if…? 如果(尤指糟糕的情況出現)會怎麼樣?

What if I told you there was a $70 billion tax that the poor pay the most. You’d probably say that isn’t very fair. But that’s exactly what the lottery is: an almost 12-figure tax on the desperation of the least fortunate. To put that in perspective, that’s $300 worth of lottery tickets for every adult every year. Researchers have found that the bottom third of households buy more than half of all tickets. So that means households making less than $28,000 a year are dishing out $450 a year on lotteries.

–The Washington Post

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15. historical data 歷史數據
16. feel desperate 感到絕望
17. get a big windfall 獲得巨額、意外的收穫

Historical data implies that when the economy goes bad, lottery revenues go up, because “when people are feeling desperate, they are more likely to stop by the gas station and buy five lottery tickets, hoping they get a big windfall."

–ABC News

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18. height of the recession 經濟衰退的高點
19. set sales record 創下銷售記錄

In 2008, during the height of the recession, at least 22 of the 42 states with lotteries — including New York, New Jersey and Connecticut — set sales records.

–The New York Times

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20. a de facto tax on the poor 實際上是一種對窮人徵收的稅
21. overall income 總收入
22. economic disparity 經濟差距
23. below-average incomes 收入低於平均水平

Lotteries are sometimes criticized as a “de facto tax on the poor," according to Matheson. “The poor spend a much higher percentage of their overall income on lotteries than the rich, and they can afford it less," he said.

John Spry, a finance professor at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, has also studied the economic disparity among people who play instant scratch-off games. About three out of four instant game tickets sold in Minnesota are purchased by people with below-average incomes, according to Spry. He also cites research that shows that in South Carolina, 60% of instant lottery tickets were purchased by people with very low incomes.

-CNN

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24. utterly fail to provide 完全失敗
25. fail to provide 無能提供
26. adequate education and public services 適當的教育和公共服務
27. exploit the desperation of poor people 利用窮人的絕望
28. fund public services 資助公共服務
29. a regressive form of taxation 一種累退的稅收形式
30. sell a lie 賣一個謊言
31. vulnerable people 弱勢群體
32. mythical thinking 神話思維; wishful thinking 如意算盤;癡心妄想
33. fantasy of escape 逃避的幻想

Think on this a moment. In a place where government has utterly failed to provide adequate education and public services, government is using advertising to exploit the desperation of poor people in order to raise revenue that funds other people’s public services. This is often called a “regressive” form of taxation. The word does not adequately capture the cruelty and crookedness of selling a lie to vulnerable people in order to bilk them. Offering the chance of one in a 100 million is the equivalent of a lie. Lotteries depend on the deceptive encouragement of mythical thinking and fantasies of escape.

–The Washington Post

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34. moral cost 道德成本
35. better off 更好的
36. rising income inequality 成長的收入不平等
37. take from the poor to spare the rich 劫貧濟富
38. under the banner of 以……名義(進行某項工作)
39. voluntary entertainment 自願娛樂
40. a scratch-off ticket一張用刮的彩票

Some policymakers argue that the moral cost of lotteries is low. After all, the games are voluntary. And perhaps the money collected by the state is better off going to schools than to booze and cigarettes and whatever else.

In an age of rising income inequality, it’s pernicious that states rely on monetizing the desperate hope of its poorest residents. State lotteries take from the poor to spare the rich, all while marching under the banner of voluntary entertainment. Banning lotto games will not make our poorest communities suddenly rich. But these neighborhoods have lost enough lotteries in life even before they touch a penny to the scratch-off ticket.

–The Atlantic

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“政府發行公益彩券,在行政上有法令依據,是合法的行為,其販售權力也優先給予殘障弱勢者,每年所獲盈餘也多用在公益事業或挹注部分運動項目,不可謂沒有功勞。但彩券基本上就是一種賭博的行為,明知中獎機率極低,但每個購買彩券的民眾總期待自己是那千萬分之一的幸運兒,事實上,絕大多數人都只是又一次發現自己只是與獎無緣的失望者,而最大的贏家就是政府。

就整體而論,彩券的發行有諸多缺失。首先,彩券是藉公益之名,慷民眾之慨以補政府的不足,彩券盈餘所挹注的公益項目,都是政府原本就應照顧的族群,不應等待民眾簽注的盈餘才來做這些事。”

–TW Times

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國內運動彩券之評析
https://www.npf.org.tw/3/5099

運動彩券制度規劃之研究 – 教育部體育署
https://www.sa.gov.tw/wSite/public/Data/f1451377029007.pdf

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時事英文新聞 (Breaking News): http://goo.gl/3EnOO6

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Sources:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/refusing-t0-cheat-the-poor/2015/07/09/78154b9a-2670-11e5-aae2-6c4f59b050aa_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.55b

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/refusing-t0-cheat-the-poor/2015/07/09/78154b9a-2670-11e5-aae2-6c4f59b050aa_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.55bf29a1f446

https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2015/05/lotteries-americas-70-billion-shame/392870/

http://www.businessinsider.com/lottery-is-a-tax-on-the-poor-2012-4

http://money.cnn.com/2016/01/12/news/companies/powerball-lottery-games-poor/index.html

https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2015/05/lotteries-americas-70-billion-shame/392870/

http://www.twtimes.com.tw/index.php?page=news&nid=265281

[時事英文] Trump’s letter to Kim Jong-un

[時事英文] Trump’s letter to Kim Jong-un
 
最近在網路看到多家媒體報導「川普給金正恩的信錯誤連篇改得滿江紅」,川普的英文寫作能力詞彙受限、文法錯誤更是令人眼花撩亂,多位網友和老師給他的信件打了D甚至F的低分。

老師個人雖然對川普的英文書寫能力沒有太大的信心 (合理推論,他最多只有時間略讀幕僚撰擬的書信),但個人覺得就該篇公開書信而言並不至於有所謂文法錯誤連篇的問題。用另一個角度理解,該篇公開書信是川普使用了強對比去表達諷刺和強硬的態度,這種書信本來就無法完全使用文法來檢驗,而是為了讓收信者了解美國政府的「態度」,故基於目的性的考量有以下寫作方式,老師嘗試著分析如下,與各位一起分享心得:

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