Yudhoyono sworn in for second term

BatikWhatever you think of the Indonesian president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono – or ‘SBY’, as people here call him – he’s here to stay. After winning the election last July, he is set to enjoy another five years in power. There was an interesting article about him and the challenges he faces on the BBC News website yesterday.

There was some great political vocabulary in the article that I would like to have a look at. The first piece is in the title:

Indonesia leader starts new term

In this case, a ‘term‘ is the time period for which someone works in a certain political position. We sometimes call it a ‘term of office‘, too. In this case, his ‘term of office‘ will be the next five years.

There were some great words in the first and second paragraph, too. We have seen all of them before on the World of Words. ‘Sworn in‘ was in this article, as was ‘polls’. We have also seen ‘clamp down on‘ before, meaning to eliminate or stop an activity from happening.

In the third paragraph, there is an interesting expression where the author mentions a ‘state body’. This expression means an organisation or agency run by the government.

Slightly later on, the expression ‘poverty line‘ is mentioned. The ‘poverty line‘ is the minimum income required to live adequately in a country. The current level set for the poverty line by the World Bank is about one dollar a day. If you earn less than this, you are below the poverty line, if you earn more you are above it.

There’s another really nice specific piece of vocabulary further into the article. Indonesia is described as an ‘archipelago‘. This means a chain of islands. There are thousands of islands in Indonesia and that helps make it a really diverse place. In fact, part of the national philosophy is ‘Unity in Diversity’.

This paragraph, slightly later in the article, is packed with great expressions:

Analysts have said President Yudhoyono must appoint technocrats and professionals rather than career politicians to his new cabinet in order to attract flagging foreign investment.

A ‘technocrat‘ is a real expert who is active in party politics, whereas a ‘career politician‘ is someone who is in politics to make a lot of money or just to become powerful. The ‘cabinet‘ is the group of politicians making up the main government. In this situation, ‘flagging‘ foreign investment means that foreign investment is decreasing or not developing to a satisfactory level.

The last interesting word in this article is right near the end where it is mentioned that some of the other candidates tried to have the election results ‘annulled‘. This just means that they tried to have them dared ‘not valid’.

Do you have a lot of ‘career politicians‘ in your country?

Today’s image is by B.S.K.

Google Chrome

I have mentioned before that I’m a bit of an computer geek and that’s why I was interested to see this article about Google’s ‘Chrome’ web browser on the Reuters website. I have already tried it on my PC at work and found it really fast and easy to use. It works really well with all the online Google applications I use for maintaining this blog, too.

There was some really interesting business vocabulary in the article, too. The first expressions I would like to look at are in this paragraph:

The deal could expand the reach of Google’s fledgling product which lags behind browsers offered by Microsoft Corp and the Mozilla foundation in market share.

A ‘fledgling‘ is a young bird that is learning to fly but when we use the word as an adjective, it means ‘new’ or ‘lacking experience’. To ‘lag‘ means to move slowly or make slow progress so to ‘lag behind‘ in this situation means to be less advanced than the other products.

In the next paragraph, the author mentions the ‘terms‘ of the deal. We use ‘terms‘ to talk about the rules and requirements agreed on in the deal. We often use it together with the word ‘conditions‘.

There is an interesting phrase in the quote given by the Google representative:

“We are in the process of testing one such channel with Sony,”

When the word ‘channel‘ is used here, it refers to a way of making Chrome accessible to more people as mentioned in the paragraph before the quote.

There’s another really interesting expression slightly later on when the author mentions ‘striking deals‘ with other PC makers. To ‘strike a deal‘ means to agree on the terms and conditions of a deal. Here are some more ‘deal‘ expressions:

  • to make a deal – to arrange a deal between two people or groups of people
  • to close a deal – when a deal is agreed on and finalised
  • to break a deal – to do something which is against the terms and conditions of a deal or to prevent a deal being made.
  • a done deal – a plan that had been agreed on and will definitely happen

What’s your favourite web browser? Why?