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#16 - Editorialist: Some people propose that, to raise

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Complete Question Explanation

WeakenX. The correct answer choice is (C)

This stimulus begins with the presentation of a common sentiment: “Some people” propose that energy taxes should be increased. The editorialist’s conclusion: “Such a tax increase…would do more harm than good.”

This conclusion is based on the following premises:


    Premise 1: Such a tax increase would decrease our country’s competitiveness.

    Premise 2: Many families would be unfairly burdened.

    Premise 3: The tax increase would reduce the number of energy production jobs.

The stimulus is followed by a Weaken Except question, which means that the correct answer choice will not weaken the editorialist’s argument, and the four incorrect answer choices will weaken the argument in one way or another. We might weaken such an argument by showing benefit that the proposed tax increases would bring, or by effectively attacking any of the editorialist’s premises.

Answer choices (A) and (B) both show benefits that come with the proposed tax increases, thus weakening the editorialist’s argument, so both these answer choices are incorrect responses to this Except question. Answer choice (D) attacks the second premise, and answer choice (E) offsets the third premise; since both (D) and (E) weaken the editorialist argument, both answer choices are incorrect.

The only choice which does not weaken the argument is answer choice (C). The variation in the size of the tax increase does not weaken the argument presented in the stimulus, so this is the correct answer choice.
Blueballoon5%
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I don't understand how answer choice B would weaken the argument. The editorialist is not saying anything about the environment. He or she is more concerned with the greater harm of the tax increase on the country's competitiveness, high transportation costs, and jobs. The editorlist didn't say that there was no benefit to the tax increase; only that he or she thought these three reasons (competitiveness, transportation costs, and jobs) were more important to consider.
Stephanie Turaj
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Hi BlueBalloon,

Thanks for your question! I have moved your question to the thread that explains this question in detail. Take a look at the explanation above, and see if that helps. :-D

Also, all Logical Reasoning homework questions are already explained on the forum in the same format as above. There should be a subforum in each homework/lesson section that lists the links to all the explanations for easy finding (For Lesson 3 LR see: https://forum.powerscore.com/lsat/viewforum.php?f=1142).

Let us know if you still have any questions!

Thanks!
Blueballoon5%
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Hi Stephanie Turaj! I am still confused with my original question. Please let me know if you could help me. Thanks so much!!
Francis O'Rourke
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Hi BlueBalloon,

The Editorialist concluded that the energy tax would do more harm than good. We should thus expect four answer choices to weaken this claim by showing a benefit to the tax or by showing that a supposed harm is not present or less harmful than assumed.

Answer choice (B) shows a benefit to the tax. The speaker only spoke of the economic implications of the tax and concluded that the tax is on balance more harmful than beneficial. This answer choice points out an environmental, or non-financial benefit to the tax. The speaker never claimed that the economic factors are the only ones to consider. The speaker actually seems to overlook other considerations.

If someone argued that a tax is bad because it is economically harmful, we could object to that person's argument by pointing out that there are other considerations to keep in mind. This is exactly what answer choice (B) does by pointing to the environmental impact of the tax.

Let me know if this helps! :-D