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#54: John Quincy Adams, a Man Raised to Serve

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Welcome to THE MAKING OF A NATION - American history in VOA Special English.

John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams

John Quincy Adams was sworn in as president of the United States on March fourth, eighteen twenty-five. A big crowd came to the Capitol building for the ceremony. All the leaders of government were there: senators, congressmen, Supreme Court justices and James Monroe, whose term as president was ending.

1825年3月4号宣誓就职。国会大厦举行盛典,参众两院议员、最高法院法官和即将离任的总统詹姆斯.门罗全体出席。

This week in our series, Steve Ember and Shirley Griffith talk about John Quincy Adams, the sixth president of the United States.

VOICE ONE:

John Quincy Adams spoke to the crowd. The main idea in his speech was unity. Adams said the Constitution and the representative democracy of the United States had proved a success. The nation was free and strong. And it stretched from the Atlantic Ocean across the continent of North America to the Pacific Ocean.

亚当斯发表就职演说,演说的主题是国家团结。亚当斯说,宪法和美国的民主代表制度经过实践检验,证明是成功的。如今美国自由强盛,从大西洋横跨北美大地,直到太平洋。

During the past ten years, he noted, political party differences had eased. So now, he said, it was time for the people to settle their differences to make a truly national government. Adams closed his speech by recognizing that he was a minority president. He said he needed the help of everyone in the years to come. Then he took the oath that made him the sixth president of the United States.

亚当斯说,过去十年,政党分歧出现缓和,所以大家现在应该集中精力,建立一个真正意义上的国家政府。亚当斯在讲话结束前表示,他知道自己没有得到多数选票,因此在今后的日子里,更需要所有人的帮助。讲话结束后,亚当斯宣誓就职,正式成为美国第六位总统。

The birthplace of John Quincy Adams in Quincy, Massachusetts
The birthplace of John Quincy Adams in Quincy, Massachusetts

VOICE TWO:

John Quincy Adams had been raised to serve his country. His father was John Adams, the second president of the United States. His mother, Abigail, made sure he received an excellent education. There were three major periods in John Quincy Adams's public life. The period as president was the shortest.

报效国家对于约翰.昆西.亚当斯来说,是与生俱来的。他的父亲是美国第二位总统约翰,亚当斯,母亲阿比盖尔让他接受了最好的教育。约翰,昆西,亚当斯的政治生涯可以分为三个阶段,担任总统是其中最短的一段。

For about twenty-five years, Adams held mostly appointed jobs. He was the United States ambassador to the Netherlands, Germany, Russia, and Britain. He helped lead the negotiations that ended the War of Eighteen Twelve between Britain and the United States. And he served eight years as secretary of state. He was president for four years after that. Then he served about seventeen years in the House of Representatives. He died in eighteen forty-eight.

亚当斯政治生涯的头25年,被委派过很多职务,包括美国驻荷兰、德国、俄罗斯和英国的大使,并协助谈判结束了英美1812年战争。随后,亚当斯当过八年国务卿。亚当斯四年总统任期结束后,又做了17年国会众议员。1848年去世。

VOICE ONE:

As secretary of state, Adams had two major successes. He was mostly responsible for the policy called the Monroe Doctrine. In that policy, President James Monroe declared that no European power should try to establish a colony anywhere in the Americas. Any attempt to do so would be considered a threat to the peace and safety of the United States.

亚当斯担任国务卿期间,有两大重要成就。第一,提出了门罗主义。根据这一政策,当时的詹姆斯.门罗宣布,任何欧洲强国都不能在美洲大陆上建立殖民地,任何以此为目的的行动都将被视为对美国的和平与安全的威胁。

Adams's other success was the Transcontinental Treaty with Spain. In that treaty, Spain recognized American control over Florida. Spain also agreed on the line marking the western American frontier. The line went from the Gulf of Mexico to the Rocky Mountains. From there, it went to the Pacific Ocean, along what is now the border between the states of Oregon and California.

亚当斯的另外一大成就是跟西班牙达成的跨洲协议。根据协议,西班牙承认美国对佛罗里达的控制权。西班牙还接受了美国西部的边界线,从墨西哥湾到落基山脉,一直延伸到太平洋,大致就是今天美国俄勒冈州和加利福尼亚州的州界。

VOICE TWO:

John Quincy Adams did not care for political battles. Instead, he tried to bring his political opponents and the different parts of the country together in his cabinet. His opponents, however, refused to serve. And, although his cabinet included southerners, he did not really have the support of the South.

约翰.昆西.亚当斯不在乎党派之争。他曾试图启用自己的政敌,让内阁成员代表美国不同地域的利益,但是他的政敌拒绝加入亚当斯的政府。虽然亚当斯的内阁里包括南方人,但是他并没有得到南方的支持。

Senator James Barbour
Senator James Barbour

Others in his administration tried to use the political power that he refused to use. One was Vice President John C. Calhoun of South Carolina. Calhoun hoped to be president himself one day. He tried to influence Adams's choices for cabinet positions. Adams rejected Calhoun's ideas and made his own choices.

亚当斯政府里的其他人不肯放弃来之不易的政治特权,其中一位就是亚当斯的副总统的南卡罗来纳州的约翰.卡尔霍恩。卡尔霍恩希望有朝一日登上总统宝座,试图影响亚当斯对内阁要员的任命,但是亚当斯没有采纳他的意见。

Senator James Barbour, a former governor of Virginia, became secretary of war. Richard Rush of Pennsylvania became secretary of the treasury. And William Wirt of Maryland continued as attorney general. Adams thought he had chosen men who would represent the different interests of the different parts of the country.

最后,维吉尼亚前州长詹姆斯.巴伯出任战争部长、宾夕法尼亚州的理查德.拉什出任财政部长。马里兰州的威廉.沃特出任司法部长。亚当斯觉得,他选择的这些人代表了美国不同地域的利益。

VOICE ONE:

In his first message to Congress, President Adams described his ideas about the national government. The chief purpose of the government, he said, was to improve the lives of the people it governed. To do this, he offered a national program of building roads and canals. He also proposed a national university and a national scientific center.

亚当斯在向国会发表的第一次讲话中,谈到了他对联邦政府的认识。他表示,政府的首要任务是改善人民生活,要完成这一使命,亚当斯提出了一项修建道路和桥梁的计划。他还建议兴建一所全国大学和一个全国科技中心。

Adams said Congress should not be limited only to making laws to improve the nation's economic life. He said it should make laws to improve the arts and sciences, too.

亚当斯说,国会的任务不仅局限于立法改善经济状况,还应该立法推动艺术和科技的发展。

Many people of the West and South did not believe that the Constitution gave the national government the power to do all these things. They believed that these powers belonged to the states. Their representatives in Congress rejected Adams's proposals.

美国西部和南方的很多人认为,宪法并没有赋予政府这么大的权力。他们认为,这些权力属于各州,各州的国会代表因此驳回了亚当斯的提案。

VOICE TWO:

The political picture in the United States began to change during the administration of John Quincy Adams. His opponents won control of both houses of Congress in the elections of eighteen-twenty-six.

约翰.昆西.亚当斯执政期间,美国的政治版图发生了变化。亚当斯的政敌在1826年的选举中控制了国会参众两院。

These men called themselves Democrats. They supported General Andrew Jackson for president in the next presidential election in eighteen twenty-eight.

这些人自称民主党人。他们支持安德鲁.杰克逊参加1828年的总统大选。

VOICE ONE:

A major piece of legislation during President Adams's term involved import taxes. A number of western states wanted taxes on industrial goods imported from other countries. The purpose was to protect their own industries.

亚当斯执政期间的一项重要立法涉及进口关税。美国西部的一些州主张对进口工业产品征收关税,保护他们自己的产业。

Southern states opposed import taxes. They produced no industrial goods that needed protection. And they said the Constitution did not give the national government the right to approve such taxes.

然而,南方各州反对进口关税,因为南方不生产需要保护的工业产品。他们认为,宪法没有赋予联邦政府权力,让政府批准进口关税。

Democrats needed the support of both the West and South to get Andrew Jackson elected president. So they proposed a bill that appeared to help the West, but was sure to be defeated. They thought the West would be happy that Democrats had tried to help. And the South would be happy that there would be no import taxes.

民主党人需要西部和南方的支持,才能让安德鲁.杰克逊当选。出于这个原因,他们提出一项对西部有利的议案,尽管这项议案肯定不会通过。民主党人觉得,这样一来,西部和南方都会高兴,因为西部人觉得民主党人是在帮自己说话,而南方人则知道,进口关税不会变为现实。

VOICE TWO:

To the Democrats' surprise, many congressmen from the Northeast joined with congressmen from the West to vote for the bill. They did so even though the bill would harm industries in the Northeast. Their goal was to keep alive the idea of protective trade taxes.

让民主党人感到吃惊的是,很多东北部地区的国会议员加入了西部的阵营,投票支持议案。他们这些做,目的是让保护性贸易关税的想法继续存在,尽管贸易关税会对东北部工业造成伤害。

The bill passed in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. This left President Adams with a difficult decision. Should he sign it into law? Or should he veto it?

这项议案在国会参众两院都得到了通过,最后的决定落在了总统亚当斯的身上。这让亚当斯左右为难,不知道是应该批准还是应该否决。

If he signed the bill, it would show he believed that the Constitution permitted protective trade taxes. That would create even more opposition to him in the South. If he vetoed it, then he would lose support in the West and Northeast. Adams signed the bill. But he made clear that Congress was fully responsible for it.

如果他在议案上签字,就意味着他相信,保护性贸易关税符合宪法,这样就会增加南方人对他的抵制;如果否决,他就会失去西部和南方的支持。亚当斯最后还是在议案上签了字,但是他明确表示,国会是这个法案的始作俑者。

VOICE ONE:

There were other attempts by Democrats in Congress to weaken support for President Adams. For example, they claimed that Adams was misusing government money. They tried to show that he, and his father before him, had become rich from government service.

国会里的民主党人还通过其他手段,削弱亚当斯总统的支持率。比如说,他们指责亚当斯滥用政府资金。他们试图证明,亚当斯和他的父亲、前总统老亚当斯,都曾利用工作之便,中饱私囊。

Others accused him of giving government jobs to his supporters. This charge was false. Top administration officials had urged Adams to give government jobs only to men who were loyal to him. Adams refused. He felt that as long as a government worker had done nothing wrong, he should continue in his job.

其他人则指责亚当斯让自己的支持者担任政府要职。这一指控纯属捏造。亚当斯的政府高层都建议亚当斯委任自己的亲信,但是遭到了亚当斯的拒绝。他觉得,只要政府雇员没有做错事,就应该继续留任。

During his four years as president, he removed only twelve people from government jobs. In each case, the person had failed to do his work or had done something criminal. Adams often gave jobs to people who did not support him politically. He believed it was completely wrong to give a person a job for political reasons. Many of Adams's supporters, who had worked hard to get him elected, could not understand this. Their support for him cooled.

四年总统任期里,亚当斯只解除过12个人的职务,这些人不是玩忽职守,就是犯有重罪。亚当斯还委任过不少在政治上并不支持自己的人。他认为,根据政治原因任命官员是错误的。很多帮助亚当斯当选的支持者不理解他这样做的理由,他们对亚当斯的支持也因此逐渐冷却。

Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson

VOICE TWO:

The political battle between Adams's Republican Party and Jackson's Democratic Party was bitter. Perhaps the worst fighting took place in the press. Each side had its own newspaper. The Daily National Journal supported the administration. The United States Telegraph supported Andrew Jackson.

亚当斯领导的共和党和杰克逊领导的民主党之间的政治斗争十分激烈,在媒体上表现得最为淋漓尽致。双方都有自己的报纸。每日全国日报支持亚当斯政府,美国电讯报支持杰克逊。

At first, the administration's newspaper called for national unity and an end to personal politics. Then it changed its policy. The paper had to defend charges of political wrongdoing within the Republican Party. It needed to turn readers away from these problems. So it printed a pamphlet that had been used against Andrew Jackson during an election campaign.

起初,支持政府的每日全国日报呼吁大家放弃个人恩怨,促进国家团结,但是后来改变了政策,不得不为共和党内的政治错误进行辩护。每日全国日报需要转移读者的注意力,因此发行了在大选期间用来攻击安德鲁.杰克逊的一本宣传小册子。

The pamphlet accused Jackson of many bad things. The most damaging part said he had taken another man's wife. That will be our story on the next program of THE MAKING OF A NATION.

这本小册子历数杰克逊的种种罪状,其中破坏性最大的,是说杰克逊霸占了别人的老婆。

(MUSIC)

ANNOUNCER:

Our program was written by Frank Beardsley. The narrators were Shirley Griffith and Steve Ember. Transcripts, MP3s and podcasts of our programs are online, along with historical images, at www.unsv.com. Join us each week for THE MAKING OF A NATION - an American history series in VOA Special English.

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This is program #54 of THE MAKING OF A NATION

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作者:Alumni
could the affair of Jackson defeat him in next Presidential election?
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