b) opposite to the ideas of
c) disliked by
d) accepted by
e) opposed by
5. The old tables were ... and replaced by the first reliable figures for air pressure on curved surfaces.
e) not used
6. The Wrights designed and built their own source of ...
a) force for moving forward
b) force for turning around
d) force to going backward
e) none of the above
Text № 16 From "K2: A Trek to Danger's Doorstep" by Graham Bowley, The New York Times, 2010
One day last June, I roped up to a porter and we leaped over crevasses until we reached the side of K2, the second-tallest mountain on earth and one of its deadliest. We scrambled up a few hundred yards to the Gilkey Memorial, a rocky, sandy promontory at K2 Base Camp that commemorates climbers who have died on K2's dangerous slopes.
The air was loud with the sound of ravens. Metal mess plates, punched with the names of some of the fallen climbers, tinkled gently in the breeze. About 12,000 feet above us, the top of the mountain was hidden by cloud; only its vast toes of black and brown rock were visible, stretching down onto the frigid boulder-strewn rubble of the Godwin-Austen Glacier a few hundred feet below.
It was just below freezing. Descending quickly, I tried not to look at the warren of rocks around me where some of the bodies, blasted by storms down K2's slopes, were
buried. Parts of some of the bodies were visible, and occasionally I glimpsed a piece of ripped climbing suit or an old boot, or smelled something sickly on the air.
The experience must have affected one of my Balti porters, Abbas. Later, around midnight, he ran barefoot over the dangerous crevasses back toward the memorial, my porters told me, screaming to the dead that he belonged with them. A couple of the other porters held him down and brought him back to the tent. Believing he was possessed, they read the Koran to soothe him, but he bolted again.
At 5 a.m. when I lifted the flap of the mess tent, Abbas was asleep on a mat on the cold, stony floor, his hands and feet trussed. When he awoke, he was untied, and he rubbed his wrists groggily. He shook his head 'no' when I offered porridge and green tea. He staggered outside to the porters' shelter, a circle of blue-tarpaulin-covered stones where half a dozen porters were throwing down gasoline, lighting wisps of purple flames to warm themselves in the clear, freezing dawn.
I had finally realized my goal of reaching the base camp at K2, in the heart of the Karakoram Mountain range in northern Pakistan. Situated on the western edge of the Himalayas, the range contains one of the highest concentrations of the world's tallest peaks. My goal was to research a book about the climbers who challenge these slopes and in particular an accident on K2 in 2008 when 11 people died, one of the worst disasters in Himalayan mountaineering history. At 28,251 feet, K2 is almost 800 feet shorter than Mount Everest, the world's tallest mountain. But while Everest has been largely demythologized by a seemingly constant stream of films, books and magazine articles, K2 - distant and reclusive — has retained an aura of mystery and danger. Among hard-core mountaineers its ascent is considered a far greater achievement than Everest.
The statistics support this. In the 2009 season, some 450 climbers reached the top of Everest while none summited K2. But K2 is not just more challenging; it is also more deadly. By the end of the 2009 climbing season, only 296 people had ever conquered K2, and at least 77 had died trying, a much higher casualty rate than for Everest.
I thought about this as I stood awestruck that cold morning, staring up at K2's stark face, and contemplated whether Abbas, in his frenzy, understood something intrinsic about this mountain and its reputation for death.
Mark the statements T (True) or F (False)
1. K2 is the tallest mountain in the world.
2. There is a memorial at the K2 base camp to commemorate climbers who have died.
3. The text suggests that the porter, Abbas, was frightened because of the many deaths that have occurred on K2.
4. K2 is located in the Himalayas in northern Pakistan.
5. The author's goal was to reach the summit of K2.
6. No one successfully summited K2 in 2009.
7. The author believes that Mount Everest is a more difficult climb than K2.
8. K2 is over 28,000 feet tall.
9. The author suggests that K2 is not as dangerous as Everest.
10. The author of the article is unimpressed by K2.
Circle the correct item
l. K2 is …
a) the tallest mountain in the world
b) the second tallest mountain in the world
c) the most famous mountain in the world
d) the name of a climbing competition in Pakistan
2. Why does the Gilkey Memorial exist?
a) To honor the first man to climb K2.
b) To mark the beginning of the ascent to K2's peak.
c) To serve as a shelter from bad weather.
d) To commemorate climbers who have died on K2.
3. In the rocks surrounding the base camp, the author sees …
a) if Abbas, his porter, had a good reason to fear the mountain
b) if people are too intimidated by K2
c) why so many people have died trying to climb K2
d) if he will be able to reach the top of the mountain
Text № 17 Bowling is one of the oldest and most popular indoor sports. More Americans compete in bowling than in any other sport. Every year in the United States, about 39 million persons roll balls down gleaming wooden lanes to try to knock down the 10 pins. Bowling is becoming increasingly popular in other countries as well, especially in Canada, Japan, and the Latin-American nations. In addition to tenpin bowling, many people enjoy other forms of the sport, including boccie, candlepins, duckpins, fivepins, lawn bowling, and ninepins.
Until 1950s, bowling was considered to be a sport for bowlers only. But today, major bowling tournaments attract thousands of spectators. In addition, bowling tournaments rank among the most popular sports shows on television.
People have competed in various forms of bowling for thousands of years. The earliest evidence of the sport dates back to ancient Egypt. Archaeologists discovered equipment for a game resembling bowling that had been buried with an Egyptian child about 5200 B.C. The ancient Polynesians played a game that involved rolling small balls at round, flat disks about 4 inches in diameter. They rolled the balls 60 feet, the distance used in bowling today.
Modern forms of bowling can be traced back to the Middle Ages. In Germany, village dances and celebration of baptisms included bowling. The Germans rolled or threw stones at nine wooden clubs. Bowling appeared in England as early as 1100’s. The game became so popular that English people began to consider it more important than archery. But archery had such a vital role in the defense of England that Parliament outlawed bowling for a time.
Bowling became increasingly popular in the United States during 1800s. But gambling on the sport became so widespread that bowling came to be considered a social evil. In 1841, the Connecticut legislature outlawed “bowling at nine pins.” Bowlers evaded the ban by adding a pin – and thus started the 10-pin game.
Mark the statements T (True) or F (False)
Bowling is one of the oldest and most popular outdoor sports.
More Americans compete in bowling than any other sport.
Bowling is becoming increasingly popular in other countries, especially in Canada. Japan and African nations.
Until 1940s bowling was considered a sport for the bowlers only.
But today, major basketball tournaments attract thousands of spectators.
The earliest evidence of the sport dates back to ancient Egypt.
The ancient Polynesians rolled the balls 70 feet, the distance used in bowling today.
Modern forms of bowling can be traced back to the Middle Ages.
The French rolled or threw stones at nine wooden clubs.
Bowling became increasingly popular in the United States during the 1800´s.
Circle the correct item
1. Bowling is one of the oldest and most popular … sports.
More Americans compete in bowling than in any other …
Bowling is becoming … in other countries as well.
more and more popular
Until 1950s bowling was considered to be a sport for …
Bowling tournaments rank among the most popular sports shows …
The earliest evidence of the sport dates back to …
The ancient Polynesians played a game that involved rolling small balls at round, flat disks about … inches in diameter.
Modern forms of bowling can be … to the middle Ages.
The game became so popular that English people began to consider it more important than …
Text № 18
Apple faces its ‘Nike moment’. Apple faces its ‘Nike moment’ over working conditions in Chinese factories
Apple contractor Foxconn raises wages by 25% after reports of long hours for the hundreds of thousands of staff in China.
Charles Arthur and agencies 20 February, 2012
Apple is having a “Nike moment”, a problem that Nike had in the 1990s when its use of cheap labour in the Far East was discovered, one of the inspectors of Apple’s Chinese suppliers has said.
Speaking to ABC News’ Nightline programme, Ines Kaempfer of the US Fair Labour Association (FLA), which is inspecting the Foxconn assembly plants used by Apple in China, said: “There was a moment for Nike in the ‘90s when they got a lot of negative publicity. And they weren’t the worst. It’s probably like Apple. They’re not necessarily the worst; it’s just that the publicity is starting to increase. We call it the ‘Nike moment’.”
Foxconn, which is one of Apple’s main contractors, said on Monday it had raised wages by up to 25% after some workers committed suicide in 2011. There were also reports of long hours for the hundreds of thousands of staff.
It is the second big salary increase in less than two years at the world’s largest electronics contract manufacturer, where workers’ conditions have been closely inspected.
Apple asked the FLA to carry out the inspection. The FLA aims to end sweatshop conditions in factories.
The continuing reports of deaths and distress at Foxconn have created a publicity problem for Apple. So far Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft and Dell, which also use Foxconn for assembly work, have not commented on their use of its factories.
Tim Cook, Apple’s Chief Executive, says that the company takes working conditions very seriously and that every worker has the right to a fair and safe work environment.
Foxconn, which has its headquarters in Taiwan, employs about 1.2 million workers at a small number of plants in China, which are run with almost military discipline. Staff work for six or seven days a week and for up to 14 hours a day.
The workers assemble iPhones and iPads for Apple, Xbox 360 video game consoles for Microsoft, and computers for Dell and Hewlett-Packard. Foxconn is one of China’s largest single private employers.
Since 1 February, Foxconn’s staff receive 1,800-2,500 yuan ($285-395) a month, the company said.
“This is the way capitalism is supposed to work,” David Autor, an economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, told The New York Times. “As nations develop, wages rise and life theoretically gets better for everyone.”
“But in China, for that change to be permanent, consumers have to be willing to pay more for their goods. When people read about bad Chinese factories in the paper, they might have a moment of outrage. But then they go to Amazon and only want to pay the lowest prices.”
Nike faced an outcry in the 1990s when independent reports revealed sweatshop conditions at a number of its suppliers. Continued protests changed its mind.
Foxconn also wants to limit working hours. The pay rises are compensation for workers’ reduced overtime, Company Spokesman Simon Hsing said in a statement. Foxconn said it was co-operating with the FLA inspectors, promising again to provide a safe and fair working environment.
In 2010, suicides at an enormous Foxconn complex in the southern boomtown of Shenzhen drew attention to the stress of many young workers.
At that time, the company denied that it ran assembly lines that were too fast and demanded too much overtime, but it soon announced two pay rises that more than doubled basic salaries to up to 2,000 Yuan a month.
In February, dozens of workers assembling video game consoles climbed to a Foxconn factory roof in the central Chinese city of Wuhan and some said they would jump to their deaths because of a disagreement with the company.
The New York Times reported that workers were happy about the pay rises and overtime limits, but some were unsure they would cause much real change.
Mark the statements true (T) or false (F)
1. Apple has the same business complications as Nike had when its use of cheap labour was discovered.
2. The ‘Nike moment’ is called the situation when the publicity is starting to decrease.
3. Foxconn had raised wages by up to 25% after some workers committed crimes under the influence of alcohol in 2011.
4. It is the second big salary increase in less than two years at the world’s largest electronics contract manufacturer.
5. After Apple had asked the FLA to carry out the inspection, the FLA aimed to end salary increase in factories.
6. Tim Cook was Apple’s Chief Executive who claims that every worker has the right to a fine and safe work environment.
7. Workers at a small number of plants in China are run with almost military control.
8. According to the article nation’s regress, wages rise and life theoretically gets better for everyone.
9. Every time when people read about bad Chinese factories in the paper, they might have a moment of an extremely strong reaction of anger and shock.
10. Dozens of workers wanted to commit suicide because of a quarrel with the company.
Choose the best answer to these questions.
1. Which bad business practices is the article about?
a) Cheap labour and bad working conditions
b) Suicides and stress
c) Capitalism and consumers
2. Which countries/ regions does the article specifically refer to?
a) India and China
b) the Far East and Europe
c) the US and China
3. What is the business relationship between Foxconn and Apple?
a) Foxconn’s products are put together at Apple’s factories.
b) Apple’s products are put together at Foxconn’s factories.
c) Foxconn supplies parts for Apple products.
4. Why is Foxconn being investigated?
a) Because there are too many workers in their small factories
b) Because workers haven’t been paid for the work they have done
c) Because working conditions in their factories are so bad that some workers have killed themselves
5. Which other global companies do business with Foxconn?
a) Nike and Dell
b) Dell and Microsoft
c) Nike and Hewlett-Packard
6. How are consumers to blame for the workers’ conditions at Foxconn?
a) We buy from Amazon and not directly from Apple.
b) We want to pay the lowest prices possible for our electronic goods.
c) We buy too many electronic goods
Text № 19
Billionaires ‘adding to poverty’. Billionaires’ fortunes hinder fight against poverty, says Oxfam
The huge fortunes made by the world’s richest 100 billionaires are increasing inequality and hindering the world’s ability to tackle poverty, according to Oxfam.
The charity said the accumulation of wealth and income often led to a reduction in secure jobs and decent wages for the poorest people. This made it more difficult for people who survive on aid or low wages to improve their situation and escape poverty.
Oxfam said the world’s poorest could be taken out of poverty several times over if the richest 100 billionaires would give away the money they made in 2012.
Without naming anyone, the charity argued that the $240bn made in 2012 by the richest 100 billionaires would be enough to end extreme poverty four times over.
It is unusual for charities to attack the wealthy, because they are usually seen as a source of money. Bill Gates and Warren Buffett are among a group of 40 US billionaires who have said they will give much of their wealth to aid projects, but there is little detail about the level of their annual donations. Russian, Middle Eastern or Chinese billionaires have not promised to do the same.
In the report, The Cost of Inequality: How Wealth and Income Extremes Hurt Us All, published just before the World Economic Forum in Davos, the charity asks world leaders to commit to reducing inequality to at least 1990 levels.
The report found that the richest 1% had increased their incomes by 60% in the past 20 years. And the financial crisis has sped up, not slowed, the process.
Barbara Stocking, Oxfam’s Chief Executive, said studies show that countries suffer low levels of investment and growth as workers are forced to survive on a smaller share of total incomes.
She said: “We can no longer pretend that the creation of wealth for a few will benefit the many – too often the reverse is true.”
The report said the issue affected all parts of the world. “In the UK, inequality is rapidly returning to levels not seen since the nineteenth century. In China, the top 10% now earn nearly 60% of the income. Chinese inequality levels are now similar to those in South Africa, which is now the most unequal country on Earth.”
In the US, the share of national income going to the top 1% has doubled since 1980 from 10 to 20%, the report says.
Members of the richest 1% are estimated to cause as much as 10,000 times more pollution than the average US citizen.
Oxfam said world leaders should learn from countries such as Brazil, which has grown rapidly while reducing inequality.
Stocking said: “We need to reverse decades of increasing inequality. As a first step, world leaders should formally agree to reduce inequality to the levels seen in 1990.”
She said closing tax havens, which hold as much as $31 trillion, or as much as a third of all global wealth, could collect $189bn in additional taxes.