PT 59 S2 Q8

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swtlilsoni
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PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby swtlilsoni » Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:42 pm

Okay it's questions like this that get me really frustrated. The answer was apparently B but I truly believe that B is irrelevant. This is why:


Argument's conclusion: people are increasing calcium intake from cheddar rather than ice cream.

All the argument is saying is that there was a decline in ice cream sales, and an increase in cheddar sales, thus, people these days are getting their calcium from cheddar rather than ice cream. It doesn't matter WHY ice cream sales decreased! Whether they decreased because of cost considerations, or decreased because cheddar has more calcium, or decreased because everyone hates the ice cream guy, the fact is that they decreased so people are getting their calcium from cheddar instead. If the argument tries to say that people are choosing cheddar for a particular reason, then B would make sense. But all it is saying is that people are choosing cheddar for their calcium intake, it doesn't specify why.

For example, say ice cream sales decreased because people are boycotting ice cream. Okay. So ice cream sales decreased. Cheddar sales increased. And nowadays to get their daily calcium intake people are using cheddar instead of ice cream (because of the boycott) the conclusion (people are increasing calcium from cheddar instead of ice cream) still holds.

Now say ice cream sales decreased because people just started hating ice cream because it tasted bad. Ice cream sales decreased, cheddar sales increased, people are getting calcium intake from cheddar rather than ice cream (because of taste this time). The conclusion (that people are getting calcium from cheddar vs ice cream) still holds.

So either way, no matter what the REASON for people to stop buying ice cream is ....the conclusion still remains that people are getting calcium from cheddar instead. The reason is irrelevant!

I really do not see why B is right here does anyone know?

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RCinDNA
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby RCinDNA » Tue Nov 29, 2011 8:45 pm

I think you might have read the conclusion as 'People are choosing to increase their intake of calcium by eating...' and cut off the first part. The author's conclusion is more so about trying to present a theory as to why people are purchasing one item versus another - the conclusion is 'More and more people must be choosing to increase their intake of calcium by eating cheddar rather than ice cream'. While doing so, s/he proposes that people are consciously making this choice due to calcium, but we don't even know if the customers are aware of the difference in calcium, so this might not have been an important factor in their purchasing decision at all. The premise doesn't even mention how the two items compare as calcium sources - it just gives an unquantified description that ice cream is an 'excellent source'.

This is how I approached this question (I got this one right). Going through the answer choices, I eliminated A (statistical evidence is not needed since we can assume the information in the argument is true), C (there is no indication that the farmers think cheddar is stealing their business - they just reported a decline in sales) and D (because the issue of which is a better calcium source never came up until the conclusion, and it is the author's opinion - not necessarily the reason the switch happened) right off the bat. E is also irrelevant because regardless of whether they still eat cheddar, ice cream sales have decreased.

This left B, which I was confident picking because it made sense compared to the other choices. When I look at your post, I get a deja vu moment in reverse, because I thought of all of those other reasons you had listed. Since this was a weaken question, we aren't trying to prove the conclusion is correct - we are trying to find a way to attack the conclusion so that the premises don't necessarily lead to it. Basically, this answer seems correct because there are a host of other possibilities as to why people are buying more cheddar and less ice cream, which weakens the author's conclusion by suggesting an alternative to his theory.
Last edited by RCinDNA on Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

revahp00
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby revahp00 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:07 pm

This is a Flaw in the Reasoning question. So we accept the stimulus as true, and the answer choices are under suspicion.

Now, the question stem says "... reasoning above is MOST vulnerable to criticism...."

Of all the answer choices, B is the best answer choice and here is why i think so:

Now, the first prephrase that comes to mind after reading just the stimulus and question stem would probably lead you to believe that the correct answer will say something about correlation not implying causation. But that answer isn't there, so moving on....

The stimulus is taking two simultaneously occurring events and CONCLUDING that the only possible explanation for the decrease in ice cream sales and the simultaneous increase in cheddar cheese sales is that more and more people are "choosing to increase their intake of calcium by eating cheddar cheese rather than ice cream..." In other words, the author thinks that the ONLY REASON (singular,1, nothing else) why ice cream sales went down and cheddar cheese sales went up is because people are choosing to get their calcium from cheddar cheese instead of ice cream.

Answer choice B points out that the author is at fault for assuming that the ONLY REASON why people are switching from ice cream to cheddar is that they want to get their calcium intake from cheddar. It could be ice cream became prohibitevely expensive, or that ice cream has no positive nutritional value, or that people simply prefer the taste of cheddar over ice cream.

I understand your frustrations. But LSAT world is not the real world. When an author of a logical reasoning question makes a conditional statement, he/she is always automatically assuming that his/her argument is airtight and unobjectionable. hope this helps.

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swtlilsoni
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby swtlilsoni » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:11 pm

RCinDNA wrote:the conclusion is 'More and more people must be choosing to increase their intake of calcium by eating cheddar rather than ice cream'. While doing so, s/he proposes that people are consciously making this choice due to calcium


That's where I'm confused. I don't see where the author proposes that they made the choice DUE to calcium. It seems like the author is just saying that they made the choice.

It's like the following sentence:
" more and more people are choosing to get their daily exercise from running instead of swimming."
It is simply saying that they are choosing running over swimming but it is not saying why.

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RCinDNA
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby RCinDNA » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:17 pm

swtlilsoni wrote:
RCinDNA wrote:the conclusion is 'More and more people must be choosing to increase their intake of calcium by eating cheddar rather than ice cream'. While doing so, s/he proposes that people are consciously making this choice due to calcium


That's where I'm confused. I don't see where the author proposes that they made the choice DUE to calcium. It seems like the author is just saying that they made the choice.

It's like the following sentence:
" more and more people are choosing to get their daily exercise from running instead of swimming."
It is simply saying that they are choosing running over swimming but it is not saying why.


To me, it is hidden in plain sight, in the first part of the sentence (more and more people MUST be choosing to increase their intake of calcium...). The author is assuming that calcium figured into people's decision to eat more cheddar instead of ice cream, which is where the flawed reasoning comes into play.

I hope that makes sense.

It would be like me saying: "More and more people must be choosing to treat depression by getting their daily exercise from running instead of swimming." I've introduced a theory trying to prove causality that is vulnerable to criticism.
Last edited by RCinDNA on Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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swtlilsoni
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby swtlilsoni » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:19 pm

revahp00 wrote:The stimulus is taking two simultaneously occurring events and CONCLUDING that the only possible explanation for the decrease in ice cream sales and the simultaneous increase in cheddar cheese sales is that more and more people are "choosing to increase their intake of calcium by eating cheddar cheese rather than ice cream..." In other words, the author thinks that the ONLY REASON (singular,1, nothing else) why ice cream sales went down and cheddar cheese sales went up is because people are choosing to get their calcium from cheddar cheese instead of ice cream.


Hey that makes sense. The author is stating that 'people choosing cheddar over ice cream' is causing the sales to fluctuate. So it is saying that their choice is causing the fluctuation of sales.

I interpreted it wrong I guess, I didn't think the author was saying that their choice was the cause of the sales drop. I thought they were saying that the sales drop is evidence of their choice. So the conclusion was "they chose cheddar ---> sales drop". I thought the conclusion was simply "they chose cheddar" and the sales drop was just evidence to support that.

Is there anything I can do to prevent this from happening again? Were there any giveaways that I missed, that indicated that the author is claiming that their choice is the cause of the sales drop rather than that the sales drop is evidence of their choice?
Last edited by swtlilsoni on Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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RCinDNA
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby RCinDNA » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:23 pm

revahp00 wrote:This is a Flaw in the Reasoning question. So we accept the stimulus as true, and the answer choices are under suspicion.

Now, the question stem says "... reasoning above is MOST vulnerable to criticism...."

Of all the answer choices, B is the best answer choice and here is why i think so:

Now, the first prephrase that comes to mind after reading just the stimulus and question stem would probably lead you to believe that the correct answer will say something about correlation not implying causation. But that answer isn't there, so moving on....

The stimulus is taking two simultaneously occurring events and CONCLUDING that the only possible explanation for the decrease in ice cream sales and the simultaneous increase in cheddar cheese sales is that more and more people are "choosing to increase their intake of calcium by eating cheddar cheese rather than ice cream..." In other words, the author thinks that the ONLY REASON (singular,1, nothing else) why ice cream sales went down and cheddar cheese sales went up is because people are choosing to get their calcium from cheddar cheese instead of ice cream.

Answer choice B points out that the author is at fault for assuming that the ONLY REASON why people are switching from ice cream to cheddar is that they want to get their calcium intake from cheddar. It could be ice cream became prohibitevely expensive, or that ice cream has no positive nutritional value, or that people simply prefer the taste of cheddar over ice cream.

I understand your frustrations. But LSAT world is not the real world. When an author of a logical reasoning question makes a conditional statement, he/she is always automatically assuming that his/her argument is airtight and unobjectionable. hope this helps.


Thank you for explaining it more clearly than I could!

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swtlilsoni
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby swtlilsoni » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:41 pm

I FIGURED OUT why this question is so confusing!

Because it is not possible for there to be any other explanation for the sales drop other than people choosing cheddar.
It is just not possible.

Can you think of one other possible reason for the sales drop?
How about .... prices went up for ice cream? Well ..... even if prices went up, people are ultimately making a choice of what to buy. The prices influenced their decision but it is still their decision. So even if cheddar cheese is a dollar and ice cream became 1000 dollars, people still chose cheddar over ice cream. So them choosing cheddar over ice cream will be the only cause of the sales drop no matter what.

cheddar costs less ----> people choose to get calcium from cheddar instead of ice cream ---->sales drop
cheddar tastes better -----> people choose to get calcium from cheddar instead ----->sales drop

some reason X is causing people to choose to get their calcium from cheddar instead of ice cream which causes the sales drop.
No matter what X is, it is causing people to choose cheddar as the source of their calcium which in turn causes the sales drop.
So no matter what X is, the peoples' choice of cheddar always causes the sales drop.

revahp00
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby revahp00 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:02 pm

swtlilsoni wrote:
revahp00 wrote:Hey that makes sense. The author is stating that 'people choosing cheddar over ice cream' is causing the sales to fluctuate. So it is saying that their choice is causing the fluctuation of sales.

I interpreted it wrong I guess, I didn't think the author was saying that their choice was the cause of the sales drop. I thought they were saying that the sales drop is evidence of their choice. So the conclusion was "they chose cheddar ---> sales drop". I thought the conclusion was simply "they chose cheddar" and the sales drop was just evidence to support that.

Is there anything I can do to prevent this from happening again? Were there any giveaways that I missed, that indicated that the author is claiming that their choice is the cause of the sales drop rather than that the sales drop is evidence of their choice?


I take no credit for what I've just related to you. If it wasn't for the powerscore bibles I wouldnt have been able to provide that explanation.

There are a few things you can do to prevent this from happening. Look for language that indicates causality. In this case the language is tricky, so your next resort is to look at the stimulus as a whole. Like i said before, in the stimulus, two events are occurring at the same time and the author is drawing a conclusion based on those events occurring at the same time. So, the author makes a causal statement based on the simultaneous occurrence of events..... So the conclusion is causal.....Also, the stimulus says "... more and more people MUST be choosing to increase...." Words like MUST indicate that the author believes that the only reason for the decline in ice cream sales and rise in cheddar cheese sales is because people MUST be choosing to get their calcium from elsewhere. Nevertheless, based on the correlation that the stimulus has provided, the author is not entitled to use MUST and thats why B is correct. If the author said PROBABLY instead of MUST, then it would lessen the degree of strength of the conclusion. But here the conclusion says MUST, so the degree of strength is it its absolute highest. hope this helps.

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RCinDNA
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby RCinDNA » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:06 pm

swtlilsoni wrote:I FIGURED OUT why this question is so confusing!

Because it is not possible for there to be any other explanation for the sales drop other than people choosing cheddar.
It is just not possible.

Can you think of one other possible reason for the sales drop?
How about .... prices went up for ice cream? Well ..... even if prices went up, people are ultimately making a choice of what to buy. The prices influenced their decision but it is still their decision. So even if cheddar cheese is a dollar and ice cream became 1000 dollars, people still chose cheddar over ice cream. So them choosing cheddar over ice cream will be the only cause of the sales drop no matter what.

cheddar costs less ----> people choose to get calcium from cheddar instead of ice cream ---->sales drop
cheddar tastes better -----> people choose to get calcium from cheddar instead ----->sales drop

some reason X is causing people to choose to get their calcium from cheddar instead of ice cream which causes the sales drop.
No matter what X is, it is causing people to choose cheddar as the source of their calcium which in turn causes the sales drop.
So no matter what X is, the peoples' choice of cheddar always causes the sales drop.


It's very possible to think of other reasons for the sales drop - you gave examples of some of them. I don't think you can really say that cheddar is causing the sales drop in the examples you had given. For example, if people just started buying sorbet instead of ice cream for frozen snacks while sales of cheddar increased due to a recent successful marketing campaign, there would be a correlation between ice cream sales going down and cheddar sales going up, but no causal link between them.

revahp00
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Re: PT 59 S2 Q8

Postby revahp00 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:11 pm

If you have any other questions, I'd be glad to help you through PMs




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