Học tiếng Anh > Luyện Nghe > Listening 1 > Corruption


When an official of a government or business is acting dishonestly, we say that this
person is corrupt. Corruption is a serious problem in many countries around the world.
There are several different kinds of corrupt practices, including bribes, kickbacks,
nepotism, and embezzlement.
A bribe is a payment of money or some other benefit, in exchange for a decision that
would not otherwise be made. For example, an accused criminal might bribe a judge so
that the judge would make a decision of “not guilty.” Another example is that a business
owner might bribe a government official so that the official would allow the construction
of very unsafe buildings.
A kickback is similar to a bribe, except that the official receives some part of the money
in a dishonest business deal. For example, governments sometimes decide which
company should build a road. A company might offer money to the government official
who makes the decision, so that this company will be chosen, even if it is not the best
company for the job.
Nepotism happens when an official unfairly gives advantages to his or her relatives. For
example, a government official might hire a brother or sister to do a job even though
other people would be much better qualified for the job. Of course, all of us want to help
our relatives, but it is wrong to do this at the expense of the public.
Embezzlement happens when an official secretly steals some money from a company or
government. For example, a manager at a company might secretly move some of the
company’s money to his or her own bank account, or that manager might lie about his or
her expenses in order to receive more payment from the company.
Corruption has very bad effects on people, in several ways. Sometimes it can lead to
very dangerous situations. One example of this is when unsafe construction projects are
approved by officials who have been bribed. Another example is when criminals are
freed as a result of bribes. Also, a country’s economy can be damaged by corruption. For
example, if companies must pay bribes in order to do business, then they may decide to
leave the country. Also, if people’s tax money is stolen by corrupt officials, this makes
the people poorer. In addition, when company officials are corrupt, it makes the company
less able to compete with other companies.
How can corruption be stopped? An important step is for each person to decide not to
act in ways that are corrupt. People must agree to take this problem seriously. Also, each
company and each government must have strict rules about corruption. It must be very
clear to all employees-from the lowest to the highest-that corruption is totally