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Write an abstract of the text. 10.3 Read the text about corruption in the U.S




 

10.3 Read the text about corruption in the U.S. Customs Service. Suggest your considerations about combating with corruption in the Customs Service

 

Text B

From the very beginning of the U.S.Customs Service existence there have been a lot of problems, corruption being the major one. No one likes to pay taxes and a good number of citizens try to take the law into their own hands, bending the system in the pursuit of increased profits. The reality is that with a small number of inspectors, thousands of miles of hard-to-protect borders, and unscrupulous entrepreneurs willing to fill almost any demand, the Customs Service has always been something of an underdog.

Two years after the War of 1812 had begun, for example, the Governor General of Canada wrote the British foreign office in London that "two thirds of the army in Canada are at this moment eating beef provided by American contractors, drawn principally from the states of New York and Vermont."

Although Customs seized some of the contraband, its task was obviously impossible. "Like herds of buffaloes they [the smugglers] pressed through the forest, making paths for themselves," a general wrote the American Secretary of War. "Were it not for the supplies, the British force in Canada soon would be suffering from famine, or their government would be subjected to enormous expenses for their maintenance."

These inherent conflicts, and the vast profits to be realized from contraband, have meant that the Customs Service has been required to wage an almost continuous battle against corruption. A report from the solicitor of the Treasury Department in the middle of the Civil War concluded that Customs Service clerks in New York with annual salaries of $1,000 began an eight-year tour of duty with nothing and left government with what at the time was "a fortune of $30,000" or more.

While the adoption of the income tax in World War One would lessen some of these pressures, the national ban on the sale of liquor during most of the 1920s Prohibition created an economic dynamic in which businessmen and gangsters serving a thirsty nation were all too willing to set aside some of their vast profits to assure that those guarding the borders looked the other way.

When the nation's war on drugs picked up steam during the Nixon, Reagan, Bush and Clinton administrations, drug organizations from every corner of the world presented a new challenge to the integrity of enforcement officials at all levels of government. The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy estimates that federal agents in 1998 seized 120 metric tons of cocaine and 1,580 kilograms of heroin. But this is known to be only a small fraction of these two drugs that were smuggled in the country that year. While corruption is only one of many factors explaining the continuing success of the smugglers, historical record is clear: bribery is a continuing concern.



In 1998, for example, Congress became sufficiently worried about such problems in the Customs Service that it ordered the Treasury Department's Office of Professional Responsibility to undertake a special study of corruption within the service and the efficacy of service's internal affairs system to combat it. In February 1999, in a little noticed report, the office concluded that while organized networks of corruption had not been uncovered within the Customs Service, that the massive flow of drugs into the U.S. places "Customs and its employees at great risk to corruption." OPR also found serious weaknesses in how the Office of Internal Affairs "sought to detect and combat corruption."

10.3.1 Give the initial forms of the following words and state what parts of speech they belong to:

continuing weakness maintenance unscrupulous

existence smugglers undertake uncovered

10.3.2. Give English equivalents of the following words and collocations:

платить налоги, неудачник, генерал -губернатор, проложить тропу, огромные прибыли, эффективность, запрет, обойти систему, голод (истощение), взяточничество, малая часть.

10.3.3. Say whether the following statements are true or false:

 

1) Corruption has been the major problem for the U.S.Service.

2) Everybody likes to pay taxes.

3) The reality is that the Customs Service has always been something of an undercat.

4) If it had been not for the supplies, the American force in Canada would have suffered from famine.

5) The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy estimates that federal agents in 1998 seized 120 metric tons of cocaine and 1,580 kilograms of heroin.


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