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English Questions – Cloze Test 204

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Former US Treasury Secretary Larry Summers recently took exception to current US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin’s views on “artificial intelligence” (AI) and related topics. The difference between the two seems to be, more than anything else, a matter of priorities and ..(1)..[negligibility]. Mnuchin takes a narrow approach. He thinks that the problem of particular technologies called “artificial intelligence taking over American jobs” lies “far in the future.” And he seems to question the high stock-market..(2)..[valuations] for “unicorns” – companies valued at or above $1 billion that have no record of producing revenues that would justify their supposed worth and no clear plan to do so.
Summers takes a broader view. He looks at the “impact of technology on jobs” generally, and considers the stock-market valuation for highly profitable technology companies such as Google and Apple to be more than fair.
I think that Summers is right about the optics of Mnuchin’s statements. A US treasury secretary should not answer questions narrowly, because people will ..(3)..[amazed] broader conclusions even from limited answers. The impact of information technology on employment is undoubtedly a major issue, but it is also not in society’s interest to discourage investment in high-tech companies.
On the other hand, I ..(4)..[disregard] with Mnuchin’s effort to warn non-experts against routinely investing in castles in the sky. Although great technologies are worth the investment from a societal point of view, it is not so easy for a company to achieve ..(5)..[navigable] profitability. ..(6)..[extensive] , a treasury secretary already has enough on his plate to have to worry about the rise of the machines.
In fact, it is ..(7)..[profoundly] unhelpful to stoke fears about robots, and to frame the issue as “artificial intelligence taking American jobs.” There are far more constructive areas for policymakers to direct their focus. If the government is properly fulfilling its duty to prevent a demand-shortfall depression, technological progress in a market economy need not impoverish unskilled workers.
This is especially true when value is ..(8)..[edge] from the work of human hands, or the work of things that human hands have made, rather than from scarce natural resources, as in the Middle Ages. Karl Marx was one of the smartest and most dedicated theorists on this topic, and even he could not consistently show that technological progress necessarily impoverishes unskilled workers.
Technological innovations make whatever is produced primarily by machines more useful, ..(9)..[debar] with relatively fewer contributions from unskilled labor. But that by itself does not impoverish anyone. To do that, technological ..(10)..[advances] also have to make whatever is produced primarily by unskilled workers less useful. But this is rarely the case, because there is nothing keeping the relatively cheap machines used by unskilled workers in labor-intensive occupations from becoming more powerful. With more advanced tools, these workers can then produce more useful things.

  1. 1) meanness
    2) emphasis
    3) immateriality
    4) nihilism
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 2)
    Explanation : emphasis – special importance, value, or prominence given to something.

  2. 1) molehill
    2) inconsequentiality
    3) trifling
    4) atheism
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 5)
    Explanation : No correction Required.
    given word in the passage is correct hence, no correction required.

  3. 1) rigid
    2) extrapolate
    3) matter
    4) distrust
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 2)
    Explanation : extrapolate – extend the application of (a method or conclusion) to an unknown situation by assuming that existing trends will continue or similar methods will be applicable.

  4. 1) dubiety
    2) spurning
    3) ignore
    4) sympathize
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 4)
    Explanation : sympathize – feel or express sympathy. 

  5. 1) disapprove
    2) repudiation
    3) sustained
    4) triviality
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation : sustained – continuing for an extended period or without interruption. 

  6. 1) agape
    2) dubiously
    3) Presumably
    4) inconsequence
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation : Presumably – used to convey that what is asserted is very likely though not known for certain.

  7. 1) nothingness
    2) pettiness
    3) paltriness
    4) questionably
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 5)
    Explanation : No correction Required.
    given word in the passage is correct hence, no correction required.

  8. 1) derived
    2) doubtfully
    3) revealed
    4) rolling
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 1)
    Explanation : derived – obtain something from (a specified source). 

  9. 1) exclude
    2) ringent
    3) albeit
    4) vacated
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation : albeit  – though.

  10. 1) subsequently
    2) ensuing
    3) succeeding
    4) posterior
    5) No correction Required.
    Answer – 5)
    Explanation : No correction Required.
    given word in the passage is correct hence, no correction required.