Angličtina - USA II.
Autor: Tomáš Vostrý
Situation: The USA is situated on the south part of North America and covers more then 9,3 million square kilometers. It is the fourth largest state in the world. USA has population of about 260 million people and borders with two states: Canada on the north and Mexico on the south. East coast is dipped by the Atlantic Ocean and west coast by the Pacific Ocean. The United States of America is federal state with 50 states, 48 are on the continent and Alaska with Hawaii is situated out of continent. There is also one district, District of Columbia – so this territory is not state, it is area of capital city Washington.
Geography: We can divide US area into several territories. The first is the Appalachian Higlands, which interferes from Canadian area on the north to Atlantic lowlands on the south. It is long stretch of mountains. The second is the Mississippi Lowlands on the south, along the Gulf of Mexico. It is place, where the Mississippi River runs to sea. The third territory is the Great prairies in the central part of USA. In this territory lie also five big Canadian lakes: the Superior Lake, the Michigan Lake, the Ontario Lake, the Huron Lake, the Eire Lake, which create a natural border with Canada. Next is the Cordilieras – the largest mountain in America continent. There are the Cascadian mountain, the Rocky mountain and the Sierra Nevada – the highest mountain with the highest peak Mt. Whitney (4418 m). Last territory creates Coastal Range along west coast.
The surface: So we can say, that surface in the USA is various, there are lowlands on the east and south, prairies in the central park and mountains are mainly on the west.
The climate: The USA lies in the moderate climate zone and there is climate determinate by ocean. Only in central part is mostly a continental climate with great temperature differences between summer and winter or day and night. There are too differences between east cost with more rainy weather and west coast with dry and hot weather and soft winters.
The rivers: The longest river is the Mississippi River, which flows from north to south. Next important rivers are for examples the Rio Grande, which forms natural border with Mexico, or the Colorado, the Missouri, the Snake, the Yukon in Alaska.
The people: The United States of America is home for more then 260 million people, density is about 26 people per 1 sq. kilometer. Around 79 per cent of inhabitants live in urban areas. The biggest of them is called megalopolis, there are for example megalopolis from Boston, throw New York, Philadelphia to Washington on east coast and San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego on west coast. The most of people are European origin, so they are children of first settlers. But there lives a lot of Afro-American, Hispanics, or Asian people. So we can say, that the USA is a cosmopolitan country. At last time a lot of people from dictatorial Cuba want to emigrate to USA, so they had to tighten up immigrantion rules.
The towns: The capital city is Washington D.C. It is seat of the government and president. A lot of American institutions and offices have a seat there. The largest city is New York with 18 million inhabitants including agglomeration. Next famous cities are: Chicago – called the Wind City with one of the highest buildings Sears Tower, Detroit – called city of automobiles, where is seat of General Motors company, Philadelphia – it was the first capital city of US, Pittsburgh – steel heart, Boston – center of the Harvard University, New Orleans – town of jazz, Salt Lake city – town of Mormons, Winter Olympic Games in 2002 were held here, Los Angeles – city of films stars and centre of film industry, the biggest ZOO in the world is there, San Francisco – with Golden Gate bridge, University of Berkeley, and Seattle – city of computers, Florida – centre of tourism, Houston with NASA centre, it is important cosmic base.
The Political System: American constitution went into effect in March 1787, so we can say, that USA is quite young democratic state. The political system has three main parts or branches: the first of them is the legislative branch, which is made up of elected representatives. They make the Congress – its seat in the Capitol (Washington). Congress has two parts: House of Representatives with 435 lawmakers who are elected according to the population of each state for two years. Second part is The Senate, which has 100 members (2 from each state voted for 6 years). Congress makes federal laws or bills.
The executive branch: is represented by the President and 13 executive departments. President is chosen in nationwide elections every 4 years and can be voted only two-time. President has quite strong position and wide authorities. He is Commander-in-Chief of Armed Forces, he represented own country abroad, he has right veto to refused bill, grants somebody pardon. The Vice-President, who came from same political party as the President is the chairman of the Senate.
The departments: State, Treasury, Defense, Justice, Interior, Agriculture, Commerce, Labor, Health, Education, Energy, Transportation, Human Services, Housing and Urban Development.
The judicial branch is made up of Federal Districts Courts, 11 Federal Courts of Appeals and at the top is the Supreme Court.
Political Parties: There are two powerful political parties, which struggle about real power in state. The Democratic Party is more liberal, they support social and economic programs.
The Republican Party supports individual initiative. Today President George William Bush junior is a leader of Republicans.
The Economy: USA has the biggest economy of the world, so we can say, that is the richest country of the world. It has good market conditions, strong business position in the world. There are produce of engines, automobiles, ships, electronics and computers. There are big companies such as General Motors, IBM, Coca-cola, Nike, Motorola, Apple Computers, Microsoft etc. The biggest trade partners are neighbouring Canada and Mexico and Japan.
Natural resources: There are extensive minds of black coal, which is used in heavy industry, petrol mainly in Texas and along southern coast, gas, gold, zinc, magnesium etc. For agriculture are important mainly corn and wheat in central part, cattle breeding, cotton, sugar wheat etc.
Slovní zásoba: dipp – smáčet, out of – mimo, run – ve sm. ústí, tighten up – zpřísnit, into effect – v platnost, made up – tvořit, according to – podle, to refuse – odmítnout, treasury – státní pokladna, interior – vnitra, labor – práce, Supreme Court – nejvyšší soud,¨extensive – rozsáhlý, cattle breeding – dobytkářství, cotton – bavlna,