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  5. "Yo trabajo para el gobierno."

"Yo trabajo para el gobierno."

Translation:I work for the government.

September 9, 2013

70 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/troy.taylor

...y estoy aqui ayudar


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Pastafarianist

For everyone like me who has no clue what's going on: this turns out to be a quotation from Ronald Reagan. The full version is:

The nine most terrifying words in the English language are "I'm from the government, and I'm here to help."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elissaf1

So said the man who believed that private corporations with no regulations would have the best interest of humanity in mind ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doc802085

Even though I am fully aware of the serious problems that stemmed from the Reagan administration (and all the other U.S. administrations that have come since then), that particular quote is very truthful.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/markgjensen

that's disgusting


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DeanG6

¡exactamente! (you beat me to it)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tessbee

... so trust me :). (The emoticon is part of the statement, and I don't know the emoticon for a grinning face)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tessbee

Haha! Thanks!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tedsmoker

work? for the government? This sentence makes no sense. ;-)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArvindPradhan

There are people in the government who work. I just don't know where they are hiding.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rewm
  • 548

I guess there's a difference between working IN and FOR the government


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JDBreeze1

But this speaker is the only one who'll admit it :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dtturman

does anybody else notice that "b"s are pronounced like "v"s and vice versa?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/awesome24712

Yes. In Spanish both v and b are pronounced the same way, with the sound being like a mixture of the two english sounds.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackstewart2

What I've always have been impressed with has been when I've pronounced a v like a v when it should be like a b, and the blank expression the person I'm talking to has as he/she doesn't understand what I'm saying. In English, we are use to pronounciations that are in the ball-park. But in Spanish, as least for some words, it has to be precisely correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KickyKat

Haha, how true about that blank look. I once thought I told a gentleman "I will see you next Thursday" (Jueves), but I had actually said "I will see you next eggs" (huevos). Unfortunately "eggs" is slang for testicles in Spanish, so he might have thought I said, "I will see next your testicles." That is when the blank look tactfully appeared instead of a horrified look, lol.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackstewart2

Oh gosh! I read one book on Spanish slang and the main thing I got out of it is don't use Spanish slang until you are really, really good at speaking Spanish and know absolutely for sure what you are saying.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Majklo_Blic

First tip: If you are at a restaurant or supermarket and want some eggs, the correct expression is, "¿Hay huevos?"

If you are daring your friend to do something dangerous or stupid, that's when you might say, "¿Tienes huevos?"

Las más que sabes.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KickyKat

That is good advice indeed!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AchyuthanS

Yes, but it's been happening since the first lessons. I'm used to it now. Besides, it happens in a number of languages.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HarpoChico

... but then nobody's perfect...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BeedleBoo

So, why para and not por?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackstewart2

The difference is between for and in behalf of. In behalf of the government would not necessarily involve a government employee. I keep these straight with the sentence, Yo compro un regalo para mi madre por mi padre, where in behalf of my father, I am buying a gift for my mother.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kirakrakra

Yes Jackstewart2, I have this Thumbrule:

  • O PARA A; the object O moves to A and STAYS there, (the present ends at the father).

  • O POR A; nothing stays at A, it is just a MEDIUM (the present does not end at mi madre, she was only a cause, something intermedient)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidMoore622957

With respect, neither of the explanations offered by Jackstewart2 or kirakrakra will help you out here. Frankly, I don't find any of the simple "rules" or "tips" to be of use in this particular case. I think it's just easier to memorize the fact that working for (i.e., employed by) someone or some organization is expressed using "para." That's distinct from working for someone on their behalf, such as filling in for a co-worker.

There's an example from SpanishDict (https://www.spanishdict.com/guide/quick-tips-for-understanding-por-and-para) that tries to elucidate the differences in this precise situation. Read the section titled "Understand Cause vs. Effect." Personally, I consider it a great example of just how lousy such explanations can be.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not completely against adopting any rules of thumb. Many are quite helpful for many sentences. However, don't think you can boil it all down to a couple of simple contrasts. Here's a link to a very useful page that drills the differences and includes a more complete list of the distinct differences in usage (unfortunately, without any real elaboration):

http://www.spanishnewyork.com/automatic/porpara.php


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wontlookdown

This is a great chat up line...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/old_aztek

can somebody explain me why the continious form "i am working" was marked as incorrect here?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kirakrakra

Duo wants continuous present to be a translation of presente continuo (here: estoy trabando) only, not of Presente. This is not always the best. Maybe it is for pedagogical reasons


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/old_aztek

that's what i thought, yeah. but since etar + participle is only an infinitve construction i guess we should be allowed to use continous forms in such cases.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kirakrakra

An infinitve construction? What do you mean neither continuous present nor Presente continuo: Estar + GERUNDIO (gerundio is not a participle cannot be used as an adjective) use any infinitives.

I think that the Spanish Presente simple often can be translated to continuous present but Duo does not.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HeavySpanvich

"I wasn't going to say that...I have something for you, Hogarth."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Danielconcasco

Para = for, meaning they employ me. If I had used por it would imply what meaning?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackstewart2

Possibly, in behalf of the government. I always think of the sentence to keep por/para straight, Yo compro un regalo por mi madre para mi padre. If you work in behalf of the government, perhaps you are a private contractor, or have been asked by the government to do something in their behalf.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/llibllens

Jackstewart2... "Yo compro un regalo por mi madre para mi padre"...this will be a great memory aid as soon as I learn whether the gift is bought at my mother's request for my father or at my father's request for my mother.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackstewart2

Interesting thought. I think that were por relates in behalf of, it would be on the mother's behalf, to be given to the father.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/llibllens

Jackstewart2 ... Gracias! Getting involved and bantering in a friendly manner with other DL learners is also a way of impressing ideas into our memories. I feel sure I will remember our dialog. I recommend to others less irritation with DL and more friendly involvement with the DL community. Best wishes in your Spanish studies.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackstewart2

Gracias por sus comentarios. I always think thst friendly, non put-down, is the best way to comment. It promotes learning and understanding. I've also done Duolingo enough that I can understand the frustration. Been there too. Duolingo has improved my Spanish and the comments by the students really promotes explanations and understanding that really helps everyone. It's one of Duolingo best features. Thanks again. Jack


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JBranch1998

It also means "in the place of."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackstewart2

Do you have an example?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidMoore622957

It's the same as you buying the gift on behalf of your mother to give to your father. You're working in her place.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Duomail

To me, "por el gobierno": because of, instead, for the sake of the government.
First, I'd think, otherwise he/she wouldn't have a job. Or he/she works instead, is doing what the government had to do. Or he/she works 'out of consideration of' the government.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DavidMoore622957

Given the political context, I would assume the use of "por" would indicate in support of the government's agenda. This is similar to what Jackstewart2 suggested (i.e., "in behalf of the government"). However, it wouldn't be as a contractor or agent, in my opinion. Rather, it would be someone who campaigns for or otherwise engages in activities that benefit the government.

Alternatively, and much more generically, "por" could be interpreted as "by" rather than "for." See the comment by Laragazza215994 elsewhere in this discussion for an example.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lamwaggi

In Spanish, aren't words like government, universidad capitalized? let me know!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ana295647

No, I do not believe that they are. My understanding is that only the beginning of a sentence and proper names are capitalized. A few for example: Señor Garcia, Real Madrid, Argentina.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kirakrakra

Yes, very little is capitalized. Titels are not capitalized, only their abbreviations. ¿Conoces al señor García? Sí, conozco al Sr. García.

http://www.spanishdict.com/answers/225670/i-didnt-know-that-rules-of-spanish-capitalization


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew122710

Why para and not por? I was taught to use por when working for an organisation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RogerJames5

Americans seem to use "government and "administration" as synonyms. In most European countries we would use "state". The "administration" would be unpolitical civil servants.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DarkVoice

We all do, about 1-3 days of the week.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AceTrainerGreen

I work for the government, and I'm here to help you.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TheAwesomeClair

...which is odd, because they don't even know I exist.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ClaireJentsch

Why not 'pro' ? I thought it was, for example, Yo trabajo por Sr. Hernandez; Yo trabajo por el mercado en Mexico...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laragazza215994

Please check: 1. The word is Por instead of PRO. Por is the preposition FOR, whereas PRO is to be in favor of. 2. The correct form is yo trabajo PARA el Sr. Hernández o para el mercado de México. 3. If you use yo trabajo POR el Sr. Hernández, you are saying that you are working instead of him ( trabajo por el Sr. Hernández mientras está en vacaciones). Now, if you say trabajo por el mercado de México could be interpreted as you work close by the México market. Hope it helps. (Sp. Native)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Adog759600

Mi tío trabaja para el gobierno. En el servicio forestal. Él construye senderos.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Vosfur

wouldn't this be "por?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HerrEktor

Damned bureaucrat


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Adog759600

waohoho watch the language man.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/guaipeqa

"para" means "for", not "in". it suggests this sentence is context-specific (i.e., that it'll always be "in the government") which is not the case.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Adog759600

That's actually really enlightening. Thanks.

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