Up until a few decades ago, our visions of the future were largely - though by no means uniformly - glowingly positive. Science and technology would cure all the ills of humanity, leading to lives of fulfillment and opportunity for all.
Now utopia has grown unfashionable, as we have gained a deeper appreciation of the range of threats facing us, from asteroid strike to epidemic flu and to climate change. You might even be tempted to assume that humanity has little future to look forward to.
But such gloominess is misplaced. The fossil record shows that many species have endured for millions of years - so why shouldn't we? Take a broader look at our species' place in the universe, and it becomes clear that we have an excellent chance of surviving for tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of years. Look up Homo sapiens in the "Red List" of threatened species of the International Union for the Conversation of Nature (IUCN) ,and you will read: "Listed as Least Concern as the species is very widely distributed, adaptable, currently increasing, and there are no major threats resulting in an overall population decline."
So what does our deep future hold? A growing number of researchers and organizations are now thinking seriously about that question. For example, the Long Now Foundation has its flagship project a medical clock that is designed to still be marking time thousands of years hence.
Perhaps willfully, it may be easier to think about such lengthy timescales than about the more immediate future. The potential evolution of today's technology, and its social consequences, is dazzlingly complicated, and it's perhaps best left to science fiction writers and futurologists to explore the many possibilities we can envisage. That's one reason why we have launched Arc, a new publication dedicated to the near future.
But take a longer view and there is a surprising amount that we can say with considerable assurance. As so often, the past holds the key to the future: we have now identified enough of the long-term patterns shaping the history of the planet, and our species, to make evidence-based forecasts about the situations in which our descendants will find themselves.
This long perspective makes the pessimistic view of our prospects seem more likely to be a passing fad. To be sure, the future is not all rosy. But we are now knowledgeable enough to reduce many of the risks that threatened the existence of earlier humans, and to improve the lot of those to come.
31. Our vision of the future used to be inspired by
[A] our desire for lives of fulfillment
[B] our faith in science and technology
[C] our awareness of potential risks
[D] our belief in equal opportunity
32. The IUCN’s “Red List” suggest that human being are
[A] a sustained species
[B] a threaten to the environment
[C] the world’s dominant power
[D] a misplaced race
33. Which of the following is true according to Paragraph 5?
[A] Arc helps limit the scope of futurological studies.
[B] Technology offers solutions to social problem.
[C] The interest in science fiction is on the rise.
[D] Our Immediate future is hard to conceive.
34. To ensure the future of mankind, it is crucial to
[A] explore our planet’s abundant resources
[B] adopt an optimistic view of the world
[C] draw on our experience from the past
[D] curb our ambition to reshape history
35. Which of the following would be the best title for the text?
[A] Uncertainty about Our Future
[B] Evolution of the Human Species
[C] The Ever-bright Prospects of Mankind
[D] Science, Technology and Humanity
On a five to three vote, the Supreme Court knocked out much of Arizona’s immigration law Monday-a modest policy victory for the Obama Administration. But on the more important matter of the Constitution, the decision was an 8-0 defeat for the Administration’s effort to upset the balance of power between the federal government and the states.
In Arizona v. United States, the majority overturned three of the four contested provisions of Arizona’s controversial plan to have state and local police enforce federal immigration law. The Constitutional principles that Washington alone has the power to “establish a uniform Rule of Naturalization ”and that federal laws precede state laws are noncontroversial . Arizona had attempted to fashion state policies that ran parallel to the existing federal ones.
Justice Anthony Kennedy, joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and the Court’s liberals, ruled that the state flew too close to the federal sun. On the overturned provisions the majority held the congress had deliberately “occupied the field” and Arizona had thus intruded on the federal’s privileged powers.
However, the Justices said that Arizona police would be allowed to verify the legal status of people who come in contact with law enforcement. That’s because Congress has always envisioned joint federal-state immigration enforcement and explicitly encourages state officers to share information and cooperate with federal colleagues.
Two of the three objecting Justice-Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas-agreed with this Constitutional logic but disagreed about which Arizona rules conflicted with the federal statute. The only major objection came from Justice Antonin Scalia, who offered an even more robust defense of state privileges going back to the Alien and Sedition Acts.
The 8-0 objection to President Obama turns on what Justice Samuel Alito describes in his objection as “a shocking assertion of federal executive power”. The White House argued that Arizona’s laws conflicted with its enforcement priorities, even if state laws complied with federal statutes to the letter. In effect, the White House claimed that it could invalidate any otherwise legitimate state law that it disagrees with.
Some powers do belong exclusively to the federal government, and control of citizenship and the borders is among them. But if Congress wanted to prevent states from using their own resources to check immigration status, it could. It never did so. The administration was in essence asserting that because it didn’t want to carry out Congress’s immigration wishes, no state should be allowed to do so either. Every Justice rightly rejected this remarkable claim.
36. Three provisions of Arizona’s plan were overturned because they
[A] deprived the federal police of Constitutional powers.
[B] disturbed the power balance between different states.
[C] overstepped the authority of federal immigration law.
[D] contradicted both the federal and state policies.
37. On which of the following did the Justices agree, according to Paragraph4?
[A] Federal officers’ duty to withhold immigrants ‘information.
[B] States’ independence from federal immigration law.
[C] States’ legitimate role in immigration enforcement.
[D] Congress’s intervention in immigration enforcement.
38. It can be inferred from Paragraph 5 that the Alien and Sedition Acts
[A] violated the Constitution.
[B] undermined the states’ interests.
[C] supported the federal statute.
[D] stood in favor of the states.
39. The White House claims that its power of enforcement
[A] outweighs that held by the states.
[B] is dependent on the states’ support.
[C] is established by federal statutes.
[D] rarely goes against state laws.
40. What can be learned from the last paragraph?
[A] Immigration issues are usually decided by Congress.
[B] Justices intended to check the power of the Administration.
[C] Justices wanted to strengthen its coordination with Congress.
[D] The Administration is dominant over immigration issues.
In the following article, some sentences have been removed. For Questions 41-45, choose the most suitable one from the list A-G to fit into each of the numbered blank. There are two extra choices, which do not fit in any of the gaps. Mark your answers on ANSWER SHEET 1. (10 points)
The social sciences are flourishing. As of 2005, there were almost half a million professional social scientists from all fields in the world, working both inside and outside academia. According to the World Social Science Report 2010, the number of social-science students worldwide has swollen by about 11% every year since 2000.
Yet this enormous resource in not contributing enough to today’s global challenges including climate change, security, sustainable development and health.(41)______Humanity has the necessary agro-technological tools to eradicate hunger, from genetically engineered crops to artificial fertilizers . Here, too, the problems are social: the organization and distribution of food, wealth and prosperity.
(42)____This is a shame—the community should be grasping the opportunity to raise its influence in the real world. To paraphrase the great social scientist Joseph Schumpeter: there is no radical innovation without creative destruction.
Today, the social sciences are largely focused on disciplinary problems and internal scholarly debates, rather than on topics with external impact.
Analyses reveal that the number of papers including the keywords “environmental changed” or “climate change” have increased rapidly since 2004,(43)____
When social scientists do tackle practical issues ,their scope is often local: Belgium is interested mainly in the effects of poverty on Belgium for example .And whether the community’s work contributes much to an overall accumulation of knowledge is doubtful.
The problem is not necessarily the amount of available funding (44)____this is an adequate amount so long as it is aimed in the right direction. Social scientists who complain about a lack of funding should not expect more in today’s economic climate.
The trick is to direct these funds better. The European Union Framework funding programs have long had a category specifically targeted at social scientists. This year, it was proposed that system be changed: Horizon 2020,a new program to be enacted in 2014,would not have such a category ,This has resulted in protests from social scientists. But the intention is not to neglect social science; rather, the complete opposite. (45)____That should create more collaborative endeavors and help to develop projects aimed directly at solving global problems.
[A] It could be that we are evolving two communities of social scientists: one that is discipline-oriented and publishing in highly specialized journals, and one that is problem-oriented and publishing elsewhere, such as policy briefs.
[B] However, the numbers are still small: in 2010, about 1,600 of the 100,000 social-sciences papers published globally included one of these Keywords.
[C] the idea is to force social to integrate their work with other categories, including health and demographic change food security, marine research and the bio-economy, clear, efficient energy; and inclusive, innovative and secure societies.
[D] the solution is to change the mindset of the academic community, and what it considers to be its main goal. Global challenges and social innovation ought to receive much more attention from scientists, especially the young ones.
[E] These issues all have root causes in human behavior. All require behavioral change and social innovations, as well as technological development. Stemming climate change, for example, is as much about changing consumption patterns and promoting tax acceptance as it is about developing clean energy.
[F] Despite these factors, many social scientists seem reluctant to tackle such problems. And in Europe, some are up in arms over a proposal to drop a specific funding category for social-science research and to integrate it within cross-cutting topics of sustainable development.
[G]During the late 1990s , national spending on social sciences and the humanities as a percentage of all research and development funds-including government, higher education, non-profit and corporate -varied from around 4% to 25%; in most European nations , it is about 15%.