Journey in Life: 08/27/20

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Thursday, August 27, 2020

"The jewel in the crown" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by: Alissa De Leva on Unsplash

"The jewel in the crown" = viên ngọc trên vương miện -> nghĩa là phần tốt nhất, có giá trị nhất.

Ví dụ
They eventually (cuối cùng) found each other and forged a powerful doubles partnership. In 1956, they won the French Championships and Wimbledon, the jewel in the crown of a sport that had hardly welcomed them.

The jewel in the crown of this property is the location (địa điểm), as it is second to none (ý nói là gần nhất, không ai gần bằng) with nearby public and private schools, Lake Wendouree at your doorstep and shops all within a short walk.

Louis Vuitton, the jewel in the crown of LVMH, the world’s largest luxury group, is venturing into new territory. The company, founded as a trunk (quần sooc) maker in 1854 and known today for its high-end handbags, has created a pro model skateboarding sneaker.

Ngọc Lân

Bài trước: "Heavy lies the crown" nghĩa là gì?

"Heavy lies the crown" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by: Jared Subia on Unsplash

"Heavy lies the crown" = hoàng thượng khó ngủ -> nghĩa là quyền lực/quyền hạn càng lớn, càng nhiều căng thẳng, lo lắng, hoài nghi.

Ví dụ
Heavy lies the crown for the individuals (cá nhân) who declares :"I see myself not only a football player, but an entertainer and icon (biểu tượng)."

Heavy lies the crown, and Jones has made no secret that the time is finally right for a move to heavyweight (đô vật). He vacated (bỏ trống) the Light Heavyweight Championship on Monday, tweeting the equivalent of telling Miocic to sleep with one eye open and grip his pillow tight.

Martin Scorsese is king of the gangster picture, but heavy lies the crown.

Ngọc Lân

"Leave him at the altar" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by lucas law on Unsplash

"Leave somebody at the altar" có altar là đền thờ thánh trong thánh đường, nơi mà cha đứng dưới đó để làm lễ cho cô dâu và chú rể trong đám cưới -> cụm từ này nghĩa là hủy hôn ngay trước đám cưới.

Ví dụ
We know from the second season trailer Gentille is open to giving her ex-fiance Brian a chance after she made the split-second (rất nhanh) decision to leave him at the altar, but will she actually decide to entertain the idea of getting back together with Brian?

“Didn’t technically leave him at the altar but 10 days before the wedding I found out he was sleeping with someone else. Took me two days to decide not to get married. Then over the next three weeks I discovered he was a sex addict and had been seeing other people for the entire nine years we were together. Got real close to being stuck in that nightmare. Thankful every day that I didn’t go through with it.”

Eli (Lamon Archey) and Lani (Sal Stowers) finally reunited after more than a year apart, after she finally exposed what Gabi (Camila Banus) had done to her to force her to break up with him and leave him at the altar on the NBC soap. Since then, the two have been focused on rebuilding their bond with each other and also trying to get some form of revenge on Gabi for what she did, after she managed to avoid prison for her crimes because she donated bone marrow to baby Mickey/Rachel.


Thảo Nguyễn

Bài trước: "Those three little words" nghĩa là gì?

Chống lao động cưỡng bức

theo đạo luật SFBCA mới ra đời, thì khó hiệu quả lắm, vì phạt chuỗi cung ứng "mờ đục/tối tăm" chứ ko phải bản thân 'lao động cưỡng bức/nô lệ thời hiện đại', hai nữa là giao trách nhiệm/đặt lên vai các công ty/tập đoàn lớn, cụ thể là tgđ của các tập đoàn đó (chứ ko phải là cơ quan nhà nước/công quyền ra lệnh cấm/trừng phạt) thì họ chỉ việc ko mua của nhà cung cấp có 'lao động cưỡng bức' là xong (né tránh vấn đề, vấn đề còn nguyên)
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The Slave-Free Business Certification Act of 2020, introduced last week by Republican Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri, sounds unobjectionable, maybe even worthy. As the U.S. engages in a worthwhile and necessary reassessment of the role of slavery in its history, the bill would force large companies to investigate and report on forced labor in their supply chains.

In fact, the net effect of the bill — contrary to its stated intent — might be to increase slavery worldwide.

As a general principle, companies should cut off commercial relations with any known sources of slavery. Yet this law calls for mandatory corporate investigation and auditing, backed by CEO certification and with significant penalties for non-compliance. The investigatory process is supposed to include interviews of both workers and management in the supply chain.

Such a get-tough approach has a superficial appeal. Yet placing an investigative burden on companies may not lead to better outcomes.

Consider the hypothetical case of a U.S. retailer buying a shipment of seafood routed through Vietnam. It fears that some of the seafood may have come from Thailand, where there are credible reports of (temporary) slavery in the supply chain. How does it find out if those reports are true? Asking its Vietnamese business partner, who may not even know the truth and might be reluctant to say if it did, is unlikely to resolve matters.

It is unlikely that businesses, even larger and profitable ones, will be in a position to hire teams of investigative journalists for their international inputs. Either they will ignore the law, or they will stop dealing with poorer and less transparent countries. So rather than buying shrimp from Southeast Asia, that retailer might place an order for more salmon from Norway, where it is quite sure there is no slavery going on.

…for every instance of slavery today there are many more opaque supply chains that will be damaged and disrupted if the burden is on large companies to root out labor abuses.


1. The law penalizes opaque supply chains rather than slavery per se. That is unlikely to be an efficient target.

2. Judgments about slavery are put in the hands of businesses rather than the government. Why not just have the U.S. government issue sanctions against slavery-supporting countries when sanctions are appropriate and likely to be effective? What is the extra gain from taxing businesses in this way?

3. There are many forms of coerced and exploited labor, and it is not clear this legislation will target slavery as opposed to simply low wages and poor working conditions as might result from extreme poverty. You also don’t want the law to tax poor working conditions per se, since FDI, or purchasing flows from a supply chain, can help improve those working conditions. You might however wish to target employment instances where, due to the nature of the law, additional financial flows toward the product will never rebound to the benefit of foreign labor. This law (which I have read all of) does not seem to grasp that important distinction.

Có cần nguồn ngân sách từ quốc phòng đâu?

cứ nói sự phát triển của máy tính được tăng tốc/đẩy nhanh là do có ngân sách thời chiến,

từ 1945 trở đi, hòa bình, ko cần bí mật nữa, sự phát triển này còn càng nhanh hơn, vì các nhà khoa học tự do trao đổi ý tưởng, sử dụng thiết bị để làm nhiều công việc có ý nghĩa hơn chỉ là tính quỹ đạo đường đạn hay giải mã thư tín của kẻ thù...
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trích dẫn hôm nay… is from page 196 of Matt Ridley’s excellent new (2020) book, How Innovation Works: And Why It Flourishes in Freedom:

The development of the computer is always supposed to have been accelerated (tăng tốc, đẩy nhanh) by wartime funding (ngân sách thời chiến), but the counterfactual of what would have happened if war had not broken out (in 1939 for Britain and Germany, in 1941 for America), is hard to discern (phân biệt). By 1945, without war, there would undoubtedly (rõ ràng, chắc chắn, không thể tranh cãi được, không bị hoài nghi, không bị thắc mắc) have been devices that were electronic, digital, programmable and general purpose. Indeed, without the need for secrecy (bí mật), they might have evolved faster, as separate teams shared ideas faster and used their devices for other purposes than calculating (tính toán) the trajectories (quỹ đạo, đường đạn) of artillery shells (đạn pháo) or decoding (giải mã) the secret messages (thư tín bí mật) of enemies (kẻ thù). Had Zuse, Turing, von Neumann, Mauchly, Hopper and Aiken all met at a conference in peacetime, who knows what would have happened and how fast?

3 khuyết tật của CNTB

- coi trọng vật chất hơn các giá trị khác,
- tạo ra người thắng vs kẻ thua,
- xói mòn cộng đồng,

luôn có thể chỉ trích cntb vì 3 khuyết tật này, nhưng để "loại bỏ" những khuyết tật này mà ko gây ra vấn đề tồi tệ hơn thì còn khó hơn nhiều...
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Russ Roberts writes,

I think a lot of people are attracted to socialism because they believe it means capitalism without the parts they don’t like. How to get there from here is left unspecified.

I think that this critique needs to be made more often. When Marx says “from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs,” (làm theo năng lực, hưởng theo nhu cầu) how does that play out? Who becomes a sanitation worker (công nhân vệ sinh) and who becomes a movie actress (nữ diễn viên điện ảnh)? If we all take turns doing everything, not much will get done. Without specialization (chuyên môn hóa), economic activity (hoạt động kinh tế) will collapse (sụp đổ). But if we choose our specialties (khả năng đặc biệt, năng lực) voluntarily (tự nguyện), based on our preferences (ưa thích, sở thích) without regard to market forces (lực lượng thị trường), we will have a surplus of movie actresses and a shortage of sanitation workers.

Capitalism will never be perfect. In Three Problems with Capitalism, I wrote,

Capitalist societies have three problems:
They elevate material values over others.
They create winners and losers.
They undermine communities.

You can always criticize capitalist societies on these grounds. But getting rid of these problems without creating worse problems is a lot trickier.

"Those three little words" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by Ali Yahya on Unsplash

"Those three little words" là muốn nhắc đến 3 từ "I love you" - 3 từ nhỏ nhắn nhưng diệu kỳ.

Ví dụ
He says “I love you” after two weeks, moves in quickly, and proposes marriage faster than you can repeat those three little words back to him. Then, as soon as the women say “I do,” they’re heartbroken and literally broke. All they have left are questions: What just happened?

Then she says that she’s keeping it tight because he won’t say those “three little words.” This is DARK. When Karen made a weird toast at Candiace’s one-year anniversary party, I didn’t realize that it was this bad. I didn’t realize it was “making sexual noises while working out to provoke your husband into saying ‘I love you’” bad. Thankfully, Karen is only 45 and still has her whole life ahead of her.

In Lucifer season 5, what Chloe Decker (Lauren German) truly desires is to hear Lucifer Morningstar (Tom Ellis) say those three little words - so why can't the Devil say "I love you"? Lucifer returned from Hell in season 5 after he learned his identical (y hệt nhau) twin brother, the Archangel Michael, was posing as the Devil as part of a sordid revenge scheme. But Chloe quickly sensed something was off about Michael and the detective soon realized he was a doppelganger. After Lucifer returned to Chloe's side, they finally became a romantic couple but, for some reason, the Devil can't (or won't) reciprocate Decker's declaration of love.

Thảo Nguyễn

Bài trước: "Drop like flies" nghĩa là gì?

"Pack on the pounds" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by: Jamie Brown on Unsplash

"Pack on the pounds" -> nghĩa là tăng cân, thường tăng với số lượng lớn. 

Ví dụ
You do not weigh yourself. To stay on track (theo dõi), weigh yourself once a week at the same time to ensure continued success. Research shows that people who do not keep track of their weight tend to pack on the pounds.

We hunt the corn late in the season when deer (con nai) shift (dời) from those remaining sources of high-carb “hot” foods, which help them pack on the pounds for the long winter ahead.

The end of summer and fall are crucial (quan trọng) times for bears because they need to eat constantly (liên tiếp) in order to pack on the pounds before hibernation (ngủ đông). With fruit ripening on our trees, they are attracted to these food sources.

Ngọc Lân

"Pack a gun" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by: Josh Danyliw on Unsplash

"Pack a gun" -> nghĩa là có súng trong tay, được trang bị vũ khí. 

Ví dụ
It's just absolutely unbelievable and it's a dishonor and disservice (báo hại) to all the men and women that pack a gun every day, put themselves in harm's way while they're trying to keep our borders (biên giới) safe.

These girls pretend they work at an ice cream parlor (cửa hàng) but instead, they pack a gun and chase down bad guys. Young, impressionable (dễ bị ảnh hưởng) children really shouldn't be learning how to create an alias (bí danh) and evade their parents in this manner, especially if they're too young to adequately separate facts from fiction when exposed to TV.

Experts remind travelers the right way to pack a gun is to make sure it’s unloaded (không có đạn) inside of a hard case with a lock.

Ngọc Lân

Khó cưỡng

giáo sư Jed Rubenfeld của trường luật Đại học Yale bị cáo buộc quấy rối tình dục sinh viên (chắc các em ấy đẹp quá)...
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On Monday morning, members of the Yale Law School faculty received a terse (ngắn gọn; súc tích, dùng ít từ (văn); cộc lốc, cụt ngủn, ít lời) message from their provost (hiệu trưởng) informing (thông báo) them that Professor Jed Rubenfeld “will leave his position as a member of the YLS faculty for a two-year period, effective immediately (hiệu lực ngay lập tức),” and that upon his return, Rubenfeld would be barred (bị cấm) from teaching “small group or required courses. He will be restricted in social gatherings with students.” As of Tuesday morning, he was no longer listed on the Yale Law faculty site.

Three people familiar with the investigation that led to Rubenfeld’s suspension said it stemmed from the university finding a pattern of sexual harassment (quấy rối tình dục) of several students. The allegations (cáo buộc), which spanned decades (kéo dài hàng thập kỷ), included verbal harassment (quấy rối bằng lời nói), unwanted touching (động chạm không mong muốn, sờ soạng), and attempted kissing (ép hôn), both in the classroom (lớp học) and at parties (tiệc tùng tại nhà riêng) at Rubenfeld’s home.

In a phone conversation Tuesday, Rubenfeld told me, “I absolutely, unequivocally (không lập lờ, không mập mờ; rõ ràng), 100 percent deny that I ever sexually harassed anyone, whether verbally or otherwise. Yes, I’ve said stupid things that I regret over the course of my 30 years as professor, and no professor who’s taught as long as I have that I know doesn’t have things that they regret that they said.”

He added, “Ironically, I have written about the unreliability of the campus Title IX procedures. I never expected to go through one of them myself.”

In 2014, for example, Rubenfeld wrote an op-ed for the New York Times that said that the university that puts in place affirmative-consent standards “encourages people to think of themselves as sexual assault victims (nạn nhân của vụ tấn công tình dục) when there was no assault” and that it is “illogical” (phi lý) to claim “intercourse (giao hợp) with someone ‘under the influence’ of alcohol is always rape (hiếp dâm).”

Chiến tranh thương mại không phải bắt đầu từ Trump

manh nha từ thời obama, hillary cũng không ưa gì toàn cầu hóa rồi,

khi tranh cử, obama đã nhắc đến đàm phán lại nafta, hillary phản đối tpp,

với một chính trị gia, tranh cử trên "cương lĩnh" phản đối toàn cầu hóa dễ hơn là ủng hộ, vì rất nhiều cử tri có xu hướng coi nước ngoài là mối nguy đối với thịnh vượng mỹ, hơn là một đối tác tiềm năng...
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Hostility (thái độ thù địch) to globalization (toàn cầu hóa) did not, of course, begin with Trump. It may be hard to remember now, but when Obama was a senator (thượng nghị sĩ), he opposed (phản đối) many free-trade initiatives (sáng kiến) advanced by the administration of then U.S. President George W. Bush, such as the Dominican Republic–Central America Free Trade Agreement. When Obama ran for president (tranh cử tổng thống) in 2008, he spoke about the need to renegotiate (đàm phán lại) NAFTA, although he quickly put that goal aside after moving into the White House. Similarly, during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont made hostility to free trade a central tenet (nguyên lý; giáo lý; chủ nghĩa) of his platform (cương lĩnh). So popular did that position prove among Democrats that he managed to pressure the Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton into opposing the Trans-Pacific Partnership—the very trade deal she had backed as secretary of state (bộ trưởng ngoại giao) during the Obama administration. The bottom line is that for a politician seeking election, opposing free trade is a lot easier than supporting it. Many voters are more likely to view foreign nations as threats (mối nguy, nguy cơ) to U.S. prosperity than as potential partners for mutually advantageous trade. Economists have a long way to go to persuade the body politic of some basic lessons from Econ 101.

To be fair to Trump and other anti-globalization zealots, amid all their mis-information and bluster (tiếng ầm ầm, tiếng ào ào (gió, sóng); sự hăm doạ ầm ỹ; tiếng quát tháo; sự khoe khoang khoác lác ầm ĩ) is a kernel (phần trung tâm hoặc chủ yếu (của một chủ đề, kế hoạch, vấn đề...); phần cốt lõi) of truth. The United States produces a lot of intellectual property (tài sản trí tuệ), including movies, software, and pharmaceuticals. The failure of countries, especially China, to enforce the copyrights (bản quyền) and patents that protect intellectual property constitutes a loss to the United States similar to outright theft (cướp trắng trợn). The Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property puts the loss at up to $600 billion per year. If Trump were able to negotiate trade deals that solved this problem, the accomplishment would be significant. But in light of how much other nations benefit from not protecting U.S. intellectual property, a negotiated solution won’t come easy.

Trump hứa giảm thuế

để thúc đẩy kinh tế mỹ ư?

giáo sư mankiw cho rằng thuế suất ở mỹ còn thấp hơn mức "tối đa doanh thu từ thuế" -> có lẽ cần nâng lên mới đúng...
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The debate over taxes reflects a classic, ongoing disagreement (tranh cãi, bất hòa) between the left and the right. In 1975, Arthur Okun, a Brookings economist and former adviser to President Lyndon Johnson, wrote a short book called Equality and Efficiency: The Big Tradeoff. Okun argued that by using taxes (thuế) and transfers of wealth (tái phân phối thu nhập/của cải) to equalize (làm cho công bằng) economic outcomes (thành quả kinh tế), the government distorts (làm méo mó, biến dạng) incentives (động cơ)—or that, to put it metaphorically (phép ẩn dụ), the harder the government tries to ensure that the economic pie is cut into slices of a similar size, the smaller the pie becomes. Based on this argument, the main priority of the Democratic Party is to equalize the slices, whereas the main priority of the Republican Party is to grow the pie.

Yet Moore and Laffer aren’t willing to admit that making policy requires confronting such difficult tradeoffs. Laffer is famous (nổi tiếng) for his eponymous (thuộc về người mà tên được lấy đặt cho một nơi (hoặc một tổ chức..)) curve (đường cong), which shows that tax rates can reach levels high enough that cutting them would yield enough growth to actually increase tax revenue. In that scenario, the tradeoff between equality and efficiency vanishes. The government can cut taxes, increase growth, and use the greater tax revenue to help the less fortunate. Everyone is better off.

The Laffer curve is undeniable as a matter of economic theory. There is certainly some level of taxation at which cutting tax rates would be win-win. But few economists believe that tax rates in the United States have reached such heights in recent years; to the contrary, they are likely below the revenue-maximizing level. In practice, the big tradeoff between equality and efficiency just won’t go away.

Vấn nạn đạo đức trong nghiên cứu khoa học

china áp dụng "chấm điểm công dân" cho các nhà khoa học luôn,

những ai có hành vi không đúng đắn trong nghiên cứu khoa học sẽ không được vay ngân hàng, không được lập công ty, hay không được ứng cử vào các vị trí ở cơ quan công quyền... 
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Researchers in China who commit scientific misconduct (hành vi không đúng đắn) could soon be prevented from getting a bank loan, running a company or applying for a public-service job. The government has announced an extensive punishment system (hệ thống trừng phạt phạm vi rộng) that could have significant consequences (hậu quả đáng kể) for offenders (người vi phạm) — far beyond their academic careers (sự nghiệp học thuật).

Under the new policy (chính sách mới), dozens of government agencies will have the power to hand out penalties to those caught committing major scientific misconduct, a role previously performed by the science ministry or universities. Errant researchers could also face punishments that have nothing to do with research, such as restrictions on jobs outside academia, as well as existing misconduct penalties, such as losing grants (trợ cấp nghiên cứu) and awards (giải thưởng).

Bức tranh ở Nhà Trắng được Trump yêu thích

Câu lạc bộ đảng viên Cộng hòa, bởi họa sỹ Andy Thomas...
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It hangs in the White House, and Trump seems to like the picture. What about the image is striking? I can think of a few things (by prof. tyler cowen):

1. There are no Founding Fathers (tổ phụ lập quốc) in the painting (bức họa, bức tranh), or other references (dẫn chiếu tới) to the more distant past (quá khứ xa xôi), and so "Republicans" are presented as a distinct (riêng biệt, khác biệt) club of their own, above and beyond the broader American tradition. (On the far right, is that Theodore Roosevelt, Vernon Smith, or somebody else?)

2. The first George Bush (upper left), and Gerald Ford, are both denied a "seat at the proverbial table." Bush seems to look on with admiration (ngưỡng mộ). The second George Bush, on the left side of the table seated, appears run down and haggard (hốc hác, phờ phạc), defeated by the job. He looks a wee bit like a paler Obama.

3. Nixon, who had to resign (từ chức), drinks alcohol while Trump seems to have Coca-Cola.

4. Reagan is shown as Trump's only peer, while Eisenhower is the one "closest" to Trump, and the one most appreciative (biết đánh giá, biết thưởng thức). Of course many of Trump's policy preferences (ưu tiên chính sách) seem aimed at returning us to the Eisenhower era in some way (higher tariffs (thuế cao hơn), lower immigration (dân nhập cư ít hơn), less regulation (ít điều tiết/quản lý), etc.)

5. Trump is the only one with a tie, except for TR, and it is a striking red tie (cà vạt đỏ nổi bật).

6. Hoover, Harding, and Coolidge are in the distant back right.

7. It reminds me of a variety of "Last Supper" (bữa tối cuối cùng) paintings, though not Leonardo's. There are twelve of them.

8. The background, with its column and twinklings lights, is reminiscent (gợi nhớ) of late 19th century French impressionism (trường phái ấn tượng).

9. Who is the bearded figure in the foreground, with his back to us? At first I thought it was Mephistopheles, but it turns out to be Lincoln. He is a passive onlooker with weak shoulders, and with no commanding or influential (gây ảnh hưởng) presence of his own.

10. Andy Thomas, the artist, also painted the very different The Democratic Club. You could write a short book on the contrasts between the two paintings, for instance notice the Democrats are drinking beer and have a much wider and open background, with fewer columns.

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