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2018年考研英语一真题——阅读理解Text4

发布于 2018-05-11 15:05  编辑:Ywen
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Section II Reading Comprehension

Part A

Directions:

Read the following four texts. Answer the questions below each text by choosing A, B, C or D. Mark your answers on the ANSWER SHEET. (40 points)


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Text 4

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) continues to bleed red ink. It reported a net loss of $5.6 billion for fiscal 2016, the 10th straight year its expenses have exceeded revenue. Meanwhile, it has more than $120 billion in unfunded liabilities, mostly for employee health and retirement costs. There are many bankruptcies. Fundamentally, the USPS is in a historic squeeze between technological change that has permanently decreased demand for its bread-and-butter product, first-class mail, and a regulatory structure that denies management the flexibility to adjust its operations to the new reality


And interest groups ranging from postal unions to greeting-card makers exert self-interested pressure on the USPS’s ultimate overseer-Congress-insisting that whatever else happens to the Postal Service, aspects of the status quo they depend on get protected. This is why repeated attempts at reform legislation have failed in recent years, leaving the Postal Service unable to pay its bills except by deferring vital modernization.


Now comes word that everyone involved---Democrats, Republicans, the Postal Service, the unions and the system's heaviest users—has finally agreed on a plan to fix the system. Legislation is moving through the House that would save USPS an estimated $28.6 billion over five years, which could help pay for new vehicles, among other survival measures. Most of the money would come from a penny-per-letter permanent rate increase and from shifting postal retirees into Medicare. The latter step would largely offset the financial burden of annually pre-funding retiree health care, thus addressing a long-standing complaint by the USPS and its union.


If it clears the House, this measure would still have to get through the Senate – where someone is bound to point out that it amounts to the bare, bare minimum necessary to keep the Postal Service afloat, not comprehensive reform. There’s no change to collective bargaining at the USPS, a major omission considering that personnel accounts for 80 percent of the agency’s costs. Also missing is any discussion of eliminating Saturday letter delivery. That common-sense change enjoys wide public support and would save the USPS $2 billion per year. But postal special-interest groups seem to have killed it, at least in the House. The emerging consensus around the bill is a sign that legislators are getting frightened about a politically embarrassing short-term collapse at the USPS. It is not, however, a sign that they’re getting serious about transforming the postal system for the 21st century.


(1).The financial problem with the USPS is caused partly by

A. its unbalanced budget.

B. its rigid management.

C. the cost for technical upgrading.

D.the withdrawal of bank support.

参考答案:B


(2).According to Paragraph 2, the USPS fails to modernize itself due to

A. the interference from interest groups.

B. the inadequate funding from Congress.

C. the shrinking demand for postal service.

D. the incompetence of postal unions.

参考答案:A


(3).The long-standing complaint by the USPS and its unions can be addressed by

A.removing its burden of retiree health care.

B.making more investment in new vehicles.

C.adopting a new rate-increase mechanism.

D. attracting more first-class mail users.

参考答案:A


(4).In the last paragraph, the author seems to view legislators with

A. respect.

B. tolerance.

C. discontent.

D. gratitude.

参考答案:C


(5).Which of the following would be the best title for the text?

A.The USPS Starts to Miss Its Good Old Days

B.The Postal Service: Keep Away from My Cheese

C.The USPS: Chronic Illness Requires a Quick Cure

D.The Postal Service Needs More than a Band-Aid

参考答案:D



Part B

Directions:

The following paragraphs are given in a wrong order. For Questions 41-45, you are required to reorganize these paragraphs into a coherent article by choosing from the list A-G and filling them into the numbered boxes. Paragraphs C and F have been correctly placed. Mark your answers on ANSWER SHEET. (10 points)


A. In December of 1869, Congress appointed a commission to select a site and prepare plans and cost estimates for a new State Department Building. The commission was also to consider possible arrangements for the War and Navy Departments. To the horror of some who expected a Greek Revival twin of the Treasury Building to be erected on the other side of the White House, the elaborate French Second Empire style design by Alfred Mullett was selected, and construction of a building to house all three departments began in June of 1871.


B. Completed in 1875, the State Department's south wing was the first to be occupied, with its elegant four-story library (completed in 1876), Diplomatic Reception Room, and Secretary's office decorated with carved wood, Oriental rugs, and stenciled wall patterns. The Navy Department moved into the east wing in 1879, where elaborate wall and ceiling stenciling and marquetry floors decorated the office of the Secretary.


C. The State, War, and Navy Building, as it was originally known, housed the three Executive Branch Departments most intimately associated with formulating and conducting the nation's foreign policy in the last quarter of the nineteenth century and the first quarter of the twentieth century-the period when the United States emerged as an international power. The building has housed some of the nation's most significant diplomats and politicians and has been the scene of many historic events.


D. Many of the most celebrated national figures have participated in historical events that have taken place within the EEOB's granite walls. Theodore and Franklin D. Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lyndon B. Johnson, Gerald Ford, and George H. W. Bush all had offices in this building before becoming president. It has housed 16 Secretaries of the Navy, 21 Secretaries of War, and 24 Secretaries of State. Winston Churchill once walked its corridors and Japanese emissaries met here with Secretary of State Cordell Hull after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.


E. The Eisenhower Executive Office Building (EEOB) commands a unique position in both the national history and the architectural heritage of the United States. Designed by Supervising Architect of the Treasury, Alfred B. Mullett, it was built from 1871 to 1888 to house the growing staffs of the State, War, and Navy Departments, and is considered one of the best examples of French Second Empire architecture in the country.


F. Construction took 17 years as the building slowly rose wing by wing. When the EEOB was finished, it was the largest office building in Washington, with nearly 2 miles of black and white tiled corridors. Almost all of the interior detail is of cast iron or plaster; the use of wood was minimized to insure fire safety. Eight monumental curving staircases of granite with over 4,000 individually cast bronze balusters are capped by four skylight domes and two stained glass rotundas.


G. The history of the EEOB began long before its foundations were laid. The first executive offices were constructed between 1799 and 1820. A series of fires (including those set by the British in 1814) and overcrowded conditions led to the construction of the existing Treasury Building. In 1866, the construction of the North Wing of the Treasury Building necessitated the demolition of the State Department building.


(1).____

(2).____

(3).____

(4).____

(5).____


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