Journey in Life: 09/21/20

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Monday, September 21, 2020

"Bữa tiệc trà" lịch sử ở Boston

"Boston Tea Party",

đêm 16/12/1773, một số cư dân Boston, tự xưng là "Những người con của tự do", đã cải trang thành những thổ dân da đỏ Mohawk, dùng xuồng nhỏ chèo thật nhẹ mà áp sát mạn ba chiếc thuyền buồm chất đầy những thùng gỗ đựng trà, vừa vượt Đại Tây Dương từ Anh sang. Họ leo lên thuyền và trong 180 phút sau đó đã ném tổng cộng 342 thùng trà xuống biển.

Sự kiện "Tiệc trà Boston" vẫn được tuyên truyền/dạy rằng là hành động phản đối Đạo luật Trà do Quốc hội Anh ban hành tháng 5/1773, thuế má quá cao,

thật ra, là thuế quá thấp, đặc biệt có lợi cho công ty đông ấn - như một phiên bản tập đoàn các chuỗi cửa hàng bán chè của thế kỷ 18 - công ty từ nay được bán trực tiếp tới thuộc địa, ko phải qua các thương nhân ở thị trường đấu giá, luật chơi mới sẽ đẩy các thương nhân nhỏ (trung gian) ra khỏi thị trường, họ sợ rằng những gì xảy ra ở bengal (hạn hán mất mùa, nhưng vẫn thu thuế cao, kiểm soát thương mại trong vùng) sẽ lại xảy ra ở xứ thuộc địa mỹ, sợ rằng ko chỉ dừng ở chè, rồi sẽ là kiểm soát cả các hàng hóa thiết yếu khác,

"buổi tiệc" này, cuộc biểu tình này là hành động chống lại sự độc quyền  của công ty đông ấn mà thôi ;)
...In the 1770s, the tea trade was a highly regulated (điều tiết chặt chẽ) global business (kinh doanh toàn cầu). The East India Company, founded in 1600, brought tea to London from China, but it wasn’t allowed to sell direct. It had to auction its tea to middlemen in London, who would then sell it in the colonies. As a result, there was a thriving colonial business of tea merchants, including many key political leaders in port cities across America - men such as John Hancock, who would later become leaders in the revolution (cách mạng). These merchants sold East India tea, but they also sold rival tea, sometimes smuggled (buôn lậu).

The East India Company was a stagnant (đình trệ, đình đốn) and corrupt monopoly (độc quyền). Insiders (người nội bộ) manipulated (thao túng) the company’s stock (cổ phiếu của công ty), and officers used their position in the company to retire with massive wealth, with nouveau riche (giàu xổi) named “Nabobs” buying seats in Parliament. The company was so systemically important to British finance that falls in its stock caused banking crises. It was a Too Big to Fail corporation. By 1772, it was borrowing from the Bank of England to stay afloat.

Prime Minister Lord Frederick North sought to foist the financial problems of this giant corporation onto the colonies with the Tea Act. He allowed the company to sell tea directly to the colonies, instead of on the London auction market. He also gave the corporation the right to ship its tea at a low tax rate, while imposing a tax on those who imported non-company tea. The East India Company would turn into a sort of 1770s version of a chain store.

This seemed like a perfect solution. Company tea would be cheap and irresistible to tea-loving Americans and meddlesome middlemen would get wiped out. What could go wrong? Who didn’t love cheap tea?

But colonists were afraid, because they knew what happened when the company monopolized a trade. In 1769-1770, just a few years before the uprising in Boston, there was a drought in a company-ruled province, the Bengal province in India. During the drought, the corporation continued to collect heavy taxes, control trade in the region and store grains for its own soldiers. Roughly a million people died in the resulting famine. William Bolts, an ex-company merchant, blamed corporate officers who, “after exhibiting such scenes of barbarity (hành động dã man) as can scarcely be paralleled in the history of any country, have returned to England loaded with wealth.”

Across the British empire, including in the far-flung outpost of North America, colonists feared that what happened in Bengal could as easily happen to them. First tea, then more vital materials. But beyond fears over national security, there was more to the resistance to a monopoly organized around cheap tea. Trade, money, and corporate power, was the center of colonial politics.

Bài trước: Lớn chuyện rồi

Cứ tưởng chuyện đương nhiên

sau 3 năm tranh đấu, giờ phụ nữ Afghanistan mới được ghi tên mình trong... giấy khai sinh của con...

Using the hashtag #WhereIsMyName, campaigners pushed for the right of women to be named on official documents including children's birth certificates, which previously named only the father.

The President signed the amendment after Parliament had delayed passing the changes, which were scheduled for discussion last week.

"I feel like a bird in a cage whose door has just been opened (chim xổ lồng), achieving the dream of flying in the sky," said activist Sonia Ahmadi, who joined the campaign when it began in 2017.

"My feeling of happiness may seem ridiculous (buồn cười, lố bịch) for women in other countries, but when we live in a society where women are physically and spiritually excluded, achieving such basic rights (quyền cơ bản) is a big and difficult task (nhiệm vụ lớn lao/khó khăn)."

Chuẩn bị như thế nào cho cái chết của mình

nếu còn ngần ngại viết di chúc, thì suy nghĩ tới di sản mình muốn để lại là gì, hiến tặng cho tổ chức từ thiện (có ý nghĩa) v.v...
Hi, Dan.

We all know that we’re going to die one day, but most people don’t prepare wills (di chúc) or make guardianship (trách nhiệm bảo vệ, trách nhiệm giám hộ) plans for their children. Is there a way to motivate people to take estate planning seriously?

Making a will forces us think about an event that we don’t want to imagine, to make complex decisions (quyết định phức tạp) we prefer not to deal with, and to plan for something that feels very far away. All these factors encourage us to procrastinate (trì hoãn). But while we experience painful feelings when we think about estate planning, the pain for our survivors is much larger if we don’t make a will.

My research lab at Duke works with a startup called GivingDocs that tries to overcome these obstacles (rào cản, cản trở). Before making a will, it asks people to think about the legacy they want to leave behind and the causes they care about, then helps them to plan bequests (sự để lại (bằng chúc thư)) to the charities (từ thiện) that matter to them. This general approach—combining a painful act with distant results, like creating a will, with something that’s immediately meaningful, like donating to charity—is a good way to get people to overcome their tendency to procrastinate.

Suy nghĩ về thực trạng đạo đức xã hội hiện nay

ko phải cứ theo đạo thì ít hành vi phi đạo đức và tội phạm hơn đâu, tôn giáo chỉ là một nhân tố, còn trường học và các tổ chức cộng đồng nữa...
Dear Dan,

Religion (tôn giáo) is supposed to make people behave (cư xử, hành xử) better, but do more religious societies actually have less unethical behavior and crime?

I wish it was that simple. Research suggests that religion can play an important role (đóng vai trò quan trọng) in fostering ethical behavior, but its effects aren’t consistent across the board. A recent paper in the journal Psychological Science examined crime data from 1945 to 2010 for over 170 countries and found that as religious affiliation went down, homicide rates (tỷ lệ tội giết người) tended to go up—but only in areas with relatively low aggregate intelligence scores. How causation works among these variables isn’t clear, but I suspect that areas with higher intelligence scores are more likely to have institutions such as schools and community organizations that help to foster ethical behavior. So while religion isn’t the only factor, some kind of strong social institutions are crucially important for curbing our worst impulses.

Giải pháp hạn chế túi nilon

cửa hàng hoa quả nên thưởng tiền cho khách tự mang túi của mình, chứ đừng tính tiền túi giấy (tự bán) nhé...
Dear Dan,

I shop at two different grocery stores. One charges a nickel for paper bags, while the other gives me a nickel when I bring my own bag. Which approach is more likely to reduce paper-bag use?

The general question you’re raising is whether punishment or reward is better at motivating (khuyến khích, tạo động lực) us to change our behavior (thay đổi hành vi). Punishments are very powerful for motivating people to do something that they only have to do once—for example, installing a smoke alarm in their house or immunizing their children.

But when it comes to repeated behaviors, positive rewards are more effective. In a study conducted in a New York hospital in 2011, researchers found that when physicians were given positive feedback for washing their hands regularly, compliance with the hospital’s handwashing policy rose from 10% to 90%. I suspect that the same principle would hold here: Offering shoppers a credit for bringing their own bag should yield better results.

Mệt với năm 2020 này quá

nhện cuồng sex "to bằng bàn tay" sắp tấn công nước Anh...

The colossal (khổng lồ, to lớn) creepy-crawlies (loài côn trùng kinh dị) are on the prowl (sự đi lảng vảng, sự đi rình, sự đi vớ vẩn) for sexual partners (bạn tình) and will be seeking out the warm and dry spots in your home.

The male house spiders can have a leg span of up to 10cm and are in the midst of the mating season (mùa sinh sản), which spans (trải dài) August and September.

Brits across the UK can expect to see more of the long-legged Lotharios in their homes, sheds and garages, as they hunt out females to be their mating partner.

Leading ecologist Dr Chris Terrell-Nield of Nottingham Trent University says the incredible creatures can "do zero to 60 in one second" and instantly disappear if you look away for a second.

Cảnh sát lại vất vả rồi

một phụ nữ mua túi đuôi gà hun khói, thì càng trông càng thấy miếng thịt giống... cu đàn ông -> tá hỏa gọi cảnh sát...
Lamia Singfield of Akron said she had purchased a pack of smoked turkey tails from the grocery store to cook for dinner. But as she was cooking them in beans, she said something didn’t look right.

...Her receipt says she bought turkey tails, she said. A photo of the label she provided says “smoked pork tails.”

...At first, she said she thought it was funny. But the longer she looked at the item, the more she became concerned the phallic-shaped meat could be from a human.

And so she called police.

Bài trước: Nhất rồi

"Have a panic attack" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by: Markus Spiske on Unsplash

"Have a panic attack" có panic là hoảng loạn -> cụm từ này nghĩa là trong trạng thái lo âu, hoảng sợ, hoảng loạn, thường có các triệu chứng như tim đập mạnh, thở dốc. 

Ví dụ
"For Dad to have a panic attack, that's super scary. You've got a lot of people watching you," Rachel said after the incident (vụ việc). "I can't imagine being him and like, if you're going through something difficult in public, you can't escape from that."

Whenever you have a panic attack start observing (quan sát) things around you. Like in an office room, you might see a laptop in front of you, a pen stand on your right, a bottle on your left, a blue board in front of you. The moment you start loudly naming the objects that are in front of you, you become aware of the present. This will make you realise that you are not in the future and your fear will slowly fade (phai nhạt) away.

Nearly anyone can have a panic attack, particularly if they’re suffering through a significant, difficult life change, like a divorce, a miscarriage (sảy thai), the death of a family member or close friend, the loss of a job, or another traumatic event. 

Once you have a panic attack, you start to associate the place with the experience, so much so that the subway (tàu điện ngầm)—or whatever the case may be—becomes something you try to avoid at all costs.

Ngọc Lân

"Any press is good press" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by: Markus Spiske on Unsplash

"Any press is good press" nghĩa là báo nào cũng tốt, báo nào chẳng được.

Ví dụ
Thorne’s behavior underscores (gạch chân) the evident (hiển nhiên) privilege of her wrongdoings (việc sai trái); these actions pulled her into the spotlight, but how far will the consequences take her career? At the end of the day, her Instagram and Twitter accounts collectively boast over 30 million followers, and, after all, any press is good press for most of the rich and famous.

Ubisoft has been back in the spotlight (tâm điểm) as of late, and probably not for the best of reasons. For Ubisoft, any press is good press as their Elite Squad fiasco has brought them newfound attention. With all eyes on Ubisoft, the publisher has announced a new Ubisoft Forward event is taking place next week.

I called some townsfolk (dân bản địa) to find out. Charboneau, still awaiting her copy of the book, believes some locals may react poorly. “The truth hurts sometimes,” she says, but she trusts Grant. “Richard is not a sensationalist.” Still, she asks repeatedly about my impressions (ấn tượng) of the book, before concluding that, for a town reliant (nhờ cậy vào) on tourism, “any press is good press.”

There’s a saying – any press, is good press. The direct quote, attributed to Oscar Wilde in 1915, is ‘all publicity is good, if it is intelligent (thông minh).’ That was printed in the Atlanta Journal Constitution that year, with the thought that the only thing worse than being talked about, is not being talked about.

Ngọc Lân

"Pressed for space" nghĩa là gì?

Dưới đất chật quá thì lên đây cho thoáng vậy :D Photo by: NASA on Unsplash

"Pressed for space" có press là thúc giục, thúc bách -> cụm từ này nghĩa là có rất ít không gian/khoảng cách; chật hẹp.

Ví dụ
No matter the size of the project, having a workspace to accommodate (đáp ứng) it is of the utmost importance. You want to have enough room to spread out tools and supplies without feeling pressed for space. Workbenches emerge as the right workstations for professionals as well as DIYers, hobbyists, crafters, and tinkerers.

As we come to terms with (chấp nhận) the fact that we’ll be working from home for the foreseeable (dễ thấy) future, and for some, forever, it’s time to build a workspace you can feel settled in. But we know that’s difficult when you’re pressed for space. 

Nicely stained wood is everywhere, and you're not pressed for space, either. I'd say this is more suited for a weekend trip to the lake, though I happen to know a couple of adventurers who were driving from Argentina to Alaska in an extremely similar '50s Chevy before COVID disrupted (làm chậm trễ) their plans. 

If you’re pressed for space in your fridge, then items such as honey, garlic (tỏi), and bread do not need refrigeration. They are fine in a dry, ventilated (thoáng đãng) space.

Ngọc Lân

"The gutter press" nghĩa là gì?

Photo by: Tycho Atsma on Unsplash

"The gutter press" có gutter là rãnh nước/cặn bã, press là báo chí -> cụm từ này nghĩa là báo đăng nhiều tin giật gân về đời tư mọi người thay vì tin tức nghiêm túc hằng ngày; báo lá cải.

Ví dụ
Currently, the blame is being dished (áp dụng) out to four main groups: The CPS, for proceeding with a prosecution (bên khởi tố) against her in respect of the alleged assault on her partner Lewis Burton, even though Lewis Burton had withdrawn (rút khỏi) support for a prosecution against her. ITV for failing to support her following her decision to stand down from hosting Love Island. The gutter press, for hounding (săn lùng) her and writing a constant flow of negative, invasive and disparaging articles about her.

The shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, told activists he was preparing (chuẩn bị) for the “full weight, the whole kitchen sink of the media, the Tory press, the gutter press thrown at us”.

Not only were governments and embassies (đại sứ quán) opposed to his strategy, but he was forced to endure (cam chịu) criticism from the gutter press, such as the Sunday Independent. Several so-called journalists, who were not fit to lace his boots, wrote really awful, mostly biased, and quite unjustifiable articles about him.

But there was something else too, and this is the point of this letter: those of us who call ourselves liberals or socialists or democrats weren’t paying attention. Most of us didn’t notice that for working people conditions were becoming bleaker (trống trải, lạnh lẽo) every year. And we didn’t notice that the gutter press was relentlessly directing the blame for those conditions towards the victims – the immigrants, the poor, the social workers, the teachers, the foreigners…and most of all, the EU.

Ngọc Lân

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