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    Economic Evolution

  A Living along the Orinoco River that borders Brazil and Venezuela are the Yanomam people, hunter-gatherers whose average annual income has been estimated at the equivalent of $90 per person per year. Living along the Hudson River that borders New York State and New Jersey are the Manhattan people, consumer traders whose average annual income has been estimated at $36,000 per person per year. That dramatic difference of 400 times, however, pales in comparison to the differences in Stock Keeping Units SKUs, a measure of the number of types of retail products available, which has been estimated at 300 for the Yanomam and 10 billion for the Manhattans, a difference of 33 million times.

  B How did this happen? According to economist Eric D. Beinhocker, who published these calculations in his revelatory work The Origin of Wealth Harvard Business School Press, 2006, the explanation is to be found in complexity theory. Evolution and economics are not just analogous to each other, but they are actually two forms of a larger phenomenon called complex adaptive systems, in which inpidual elements, parts or agents interact, then process information and adapt their behavior to changing conditions. Immune systems, ecosystems, language, the law and the Internet are all examples of complex adaptive systems.

  C In biological evolution, nature selects from the variation produced by random genetic mutations and the mixing of parental genes. Out of that process of cumulative selection emerges complexity and persity. In economic evolution, our material economy proceeds through the production and selection of numerous permutations of countless products. Those 10 billion products in the Manhattan village represent only those variations that made it to market, after which there is a cumulative selection by consumers in the marketplace for those deemed most useful:VHS over Betamax, DVDs over VHS, CDs over vinyl records, flip phones over brick phones, computers over typewriters, Google over Altavista, SUVs over station wagons, paper books over e-books still, and Internet news over network news soon.Those that are purchased “survive” and "reproduce" into the future through repetitive use and remanufacturing.

  D As with living organisms and ecosystems, the economy looks designed—so just as humans naturally deduce the existence of a top-down intelligent designer, humans also understandably infer that a top-down government designer is needed in nearly every aspect of the economy. But just as living organisms are shaped from the bottom up by natural selection, the economy is molded from the bottom up by the invisible hand. The correspondence between evolution and economics is not perfect, because some top-down institutional rules and laws are needed to provide a structure within which free and fair trade can occur. But too much top-down interference into the marketplace makes trade neither free nor fair. When such attempts have been made in the past they have failed—because markets are far too complex, interactive and autocatalytic to be designed from the top down. In his 1922 book, Socialism, Ludwig Von Mises spelled out the reasons why, most notably the problem of “economic calculation” in a planned socialist economy. In capitalism, prices are in constant and rapid flux and are determined from below by inpiduals freely exchanging in the marketplace. Money is a means of exchange, and prices are the information people use to guide their choices. Von Mises demonstrated that socialist economies depend on capitalist economies to determine what prices should be assigned to goods and services. And they do so cumbersomely and inefficiently. Relatively free markets are, ultimately, the only way to find out what buyers are willing to pay and what sellers are willing to accept.

  E Economics helps to explain how Yanomam-like hunter-gatherers evolved into Manhattan-like consumer-traders. In the Nineteenth century French economist Frederic Bastiat well captured the principle: “Where goods do not cross frontiers, armies will." In addition to being fierce warriors, the Yanomam are also sophisticated traders, and the more they trade the less they fight. The reason is that trade is a powerful social adhesive that creates political alliances. One village cannot go to another village and announce that they are worried about being conquered by a third, more powerful village—that would reveal weakness. Instead they mask the real motives for alliance through trade and reciprocal feasting. And, as a result, not only gain military protection but also initiate a system of trade that—in the long run—leads to an increase in both wealth and SKUs.

  F Free and fair trade occurs in societies where most inpiduals interact in ways that provide mutual benefit. The necessary rules weren't generated by wise men in a sacred temple, or lawmakers in congress, but rather evolved over generations and were widely accepted and practiced before the law was ever written. Laws that fail this test are ignored. If enforcement becomes too onerous, there is rebellion. Yet the concept that human interaction must, and can be controlled by a higher force is universal. Interestingly, there is no widespread agreement on who the "higher force" is. Religious people ascribe good behavior to god's law. They cannot conceive of an orderly society of atheists. Secular people credit the government. They consider anarchy to be synonymous with barbarity. Everyone seems to agree on the concept that orderly society requires an omnipotent force. Yet, everywhere there is evidence that this is not so. An important distinction between spontaneous social order and social anarchy is that the former is developed by work and investment, under the rule of law and with a set of evolved morals while the latter is chaos. The classical liberal tradition of von Mises and Hayek never makes the claim that the complete absence of top-down rules leads to the optimal social order. It simply says we should be skeptical about our ability to manage them in the name of social justice, equality, or progress.

  Questions 1-5

  Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1?

  In boxes 1-5 on your answer sheet, write

  TRUE if the statement is true

  FALSE if the statement if false

  NOT GIVEN if the information is not given in the passage

  SKUs is a more precise measurement to demonstrate the economic level of a community.

  No concrete examples are presented when the author makes the statement concerning economic evolution.

  Evolution and economics show a defective homolog.

  Martial actions might be taken to cross the borders if trades do not work.

  Profit is the invisible hand to guide the market.

  Questions 6-8

  Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D.

  Write your answers in boxes 6-8 on your answer sheet.

  6 What ought to play a vital role in each field the economy?

  A a strict rule

  B a smart strategy

  C a tightly managed authority

  D a powerful legislation

  7-8 Which two of the following tools are used to pretend to ask for union according to one explanation from the perspective of economics

  A an official announcement

  B a diplomatic event

  C the exchange of goods

  D certain written correspondence

  E some enjoyable treatment in a win-win situation

    Questions 9-13


  Complete the following summary of the paragraphs of Reading Passage, using no more than three words from the Reading Passage for each answer. Write your answers in boxes 9-13 on your answer sheet.

  In response to the search of reasons for the phenomenon shown by the huge difference in the income between two groups of people both dwelling near the rivers, several researchers made their effort and gave certain explanations. One attributes 9 to the interesting change claiming that it is not as simple as it seems to be in appearance that the relationship between 10 which is a good example of 11 , which involve in the interaction of separate factors for the processing of information as well as the behavioral adaptation to unstable conditions. As far as the biological transformation is concerned, both 12 and the blend of genes from the last generation bring about the difference. The economic counterpart shows how generating and choosing the 13 of innumerable goods moves forward the material-oriented economy.



  体裁 论说文

  题目 经济进化论

  结构 A段:Yanomam人和曼哈顿人在年收入及库存单位上存在巨大差异







    Question 1-13


    题号 定位词 文中对应点 题目解析

  1 SKUs A段第三句 A段提到SKUs库存单位,只是将Yanomam人和曼哈顿人在年收入和库存单位上的差异做了一个比较,并未说明SKUs是否能够衡量经济发展水平。

  因此,本题答案为 NOT GIVEN。

  2 Economic evolution C段第三句 C段第三句陈述了作者对于经济进化论的观点之后,接下来的内容都是举例,例如,VHS、DVDs、CDs、computer等等。


  3 Economics, evolution B段第三句 B段第三句提到economics和evolution之间的关系是analogous to each other,即两者之间是类比的、相似的,则说明二者有相同的缺陷或者优点。


  4 Martial actions, trades ,borders E段第二句 E段第二句明确提到where goods do not cross frontiers, armies will。其中goods、frontiers、armies分别对应题目中的trades、borders、martial actions。


  5 Invisible hand, market D段第二句 D段第二句提到经济是通过看不见的手自下而上进行选择的,此处的经济指的就是题目中的market,原文只提到有“看不见的手”在引导经济,但是并没有说明“看不见的手”是指什么。

  因此,本题答案为NOT GIVEN。

  6 Each field the economy D段第一句 D段第一句的第三个小分句提到,humans also infer that a top-down government designer is needed in nearly every aspect of the economy,此处的every aspect of the economy对应题干中的 each field the economy,故能在经济各方面都起到作用的是a top-down government designer,即一个由上而下精心设计的政府。


  7 Pretend, union E段第六句 E段第六句提到,they mask the real motives for alliance through trade and reciprocal feasting,该句中的mask对应题干的pretend,alliance对应题干的union。原句说他们掩盖真实动机寻求联盟是通过trade和reciprocal feasting,即这两种就是结盟的方式。Trade对应C选项的the exchange of goods.


  8 Pretend, union E段第六句 E段第六句提到,they mask the real motives for alliance through trade and reciprocal feasting,该句中的mask对应题干的pretend,alliance对应题干的union。原句说他们掩盖真实动机寻求联盟是通过trade和reciprocal feasting,即这两种就是结盟的方式。Reciprocal feasting对应E选项的some enjoyable treatment in a win-win situation。


  9 Explanations B段第二句 B段第二句提出 the explanation is to be found in complexity theory。

  因此,本题答案为complexity theory。

  10 Relationship B段第三句 B段第三句提出evolution and economics are not just analogous to each other,此处提到进化和经济之间不仅仅只是类比关系,对应的就是relationship。

  因此,本题答案为evolution and economics。

  11 Example B段第三句 B段第三句提到,but theyevolution and economics are actually two forms of a larger phenomenon called complex adaptive systems。该句的forms即对应example.

  因此,本题答案为 complex adaptive systems。

  12 Biological transformation, difference, blend of genes C段第一句 C段第一句提到,in biological evolution, nature selects from the variation produced by random genetic mutations and the mixing of parental genes。该句中的biological evolution对应biological transformation,variation对应difference,mixing of parental genes对应blend of genes。

  因此,本题答案为random genetic mutations。

  13 Generating and choosing C段第三句 C段第三句提到,our material economy proceeds through the production and selection of numerous permutations of countless products。该句中的production and selection对应generating and choosing。




  A 生活在巴西和委内瑞拉边界的奥里诺科河畔的Yanomam人,以打猎为生,他们的平均年收入大约为每人每年90美元,而住在纽约州和新泽西州边界的哈德逊河边的曼哈顿人,从事着贸易行当,他们的平均年收入大约是每人每年36000美元。然而,如果用库存单位SKU指标,该数量的类型的零售产品可用来衡量,这种400倍的戏剧性差异就显得微不足道了。预计在300年和100亿年的Yanomam为曼哈顿,一个差的3300万倍!

  B 这是怎么发生的?经济学家Eric D. Beinhocker在他的相关著作《财富的起源》哈佛大学商学院出版社,2006年中发表了若干文章,认为可以用复杂性理论来进行解释。进化和经济之间不仅仅只是类比的关系,它们实际上是一种更宏大的现象——复杂适应系统的两种形式,该系统中的独立元素和部分互相作用,然后进行信息处理以使它们的行为适应变化的条件。免疫系统,生态系统,语言,法律和互联网都是复杂性系统应用的例子。

  C 在生物进化的过程中,自然选择产生于随机的基因突变和父母基因的组合所产生的变化。复杂性和多样性就是从这种累积性的选择过程中产生的。在经济高速发展,我们的物质经济收益通过不计其数的产品生产和选择的无数的组合完成进化。在曼哈顿村的哪些100亿的产品仅仅代表能够进入市场的变化部分,随之而来的是一个消费者在市场上对其最需要的产品进行累积性选择的过程。VHS代替了Betamax, DVD取代了VHS, CD取代了塑胶唱片,翻盖式移动手机取代了大哥大,电脑取代了打字机,谷歌取代了远景公司,运动型多功能车取代了旅行桥车,纸质书取代了电子书,网络新闻很快将会取代新闻广播,这些被购买的商品存活下来并且通过重复的使用和生产得以“繁殖”。

  D 就像是活的有机体和生态系统,经济看起来是精心设计出来的——就像是人类自然而然是出自一个严谨的智慧的设计师之手,可以理解的是,一个组织严密的政府几乎需要涉足经济的方方面面。但是也正是像活的有机体是通过自然选择自下而上的一样,经济也是通过看不见的手自下而上进行选择的。 进化和经济之间的对应性并不是天衣无缝的,因为需要一些组织严密的法则和法律来保障自由公平的贸易能够实现。但是太多的政府干预进入市场使得市场既不能实现自由也谈不上公平,以前进行的这种尝试就失败了,因为市场远比仅仅是组织严密要复杂得多,各种因素相互作用,自动催化。在Ludwig von Mises1922年所写的书《社会主义》中阐述了原因,其中最著名的要数在有计划的社会主义经济中的“经济核算”。在资本主义社会中,价格是不变也快速流动的,是由市场上自由的个体交换决定的,价格是人们用来指导消费选择的信息。Von Mises指出,社会主义经济依赖于资本主义经济来决定价格如何在商品和服务间分配。社会主义这种的价格决定方式是很累贅且没有效率的。相对自由的市场才是最终唯一能知道消费者希望花多少钱来购买商品和服务。

  E 经济进化论有助于解释Yanomam人作为采猎者是怎么进化成像曼哈顿消费贸易者的。十九世纪,法国经济学家Frederic Bastiat很好地总结了其中的原理:“在商品无法跨越的地方,军队会顶上去。”除了是强壮的战士,Yanomam人也是精明的商人,并且当他们越多地进行贸易,他们所要进行的争斗就越少。原因在于贸易是一个强有力的社会粘合剂,可以产生政治联盟。一个村庄的村民不能直接到另一个村庄宣布他们正在遭遇可能被第三个更加强大的村庄征服的消息——这样只会展示出自己的软弱。相反,他们通过贸易和互惠的活动掩盖了自己的想要结盟的真正动机。从而不仅得到了军亊保护还激发了一种长期增加双方财富和SKU 库存单位的机制的产生。

  F 自由和公平的贸易发生在社会中大多数人的方式交互提供互惠互利。必要的规则不是神圣的庙宇中的智者或是国会的立法者制定的,而是在写成法律前经过几代人演化从而被广泛接受和参与的。法律,没能通过这样的测试的法律将被忽略。如果执法过于繁重,就会有人反抗。然而人类必须交互这个概念必须也是可以由一个更高的力量来控制是通用的。有趣的是,人们没有就 “更高的力量”是什么得到广泛的共识。宗教人士认为是遵循神的律法的良好行为。他们不能想象这样一个有序的社会是无神的。世俗普通人认为这个力量是政府。他们认为无政府状态是野蛮的代名词。所有人似乎都同意这个概念,有序的社会需要一个无所不能的力量。然而,处处有证据表明事实并非如此。自发社会秩序和社会的无政府状态的一个重要的区别是,前者是在律法和一套演化过来的道德标准之下由工作和投资演化而来的,而后者是混乱。古典自由主义传统的冯米塞斯和哈耶克从未声称完全缺乏自上而下的规则会导致最优社会秩序,它只是说我们应该怀疑我们以社会正义,公平或进步的名义管理他们的能力。


  Version 19110 主题 经济进化论

  1 NOT GIVEN 2 FALSE 3 TRUE 4 TRUE 5 NOT GIVEN 6 C 7 C 8 E 9 complexity theory

  10 evolution and economics 11 complex adaptive systems 12 random genetic mutations 13 permutations