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#20 - James: Chemists have recently invented a new technique

LSAT Master
Posts: 113
Joined: Thu Jul 06, 2017 12:14 pm
Points: 112


Why is (D) the credited response? I struggled between multiple choices:

(A) seems to make sense, because James's claim that "the use of nuclear power is a cleaner environment" is show by Marta to not be true. The technology hasn't been implemented anywhere, so it's not accurate to say it's contributing.

(C) seems possible too, because James is assuming that the technology is contributing to a cleaner environment when in fact it is not. This seems like a class LSAT assumption: unstated, James thinks that just because something exists that it's being used. So he's assuming the truth of the conclusion (that nuclear power is contributing to a cleaner environment) that he wants to establish.

(D) makes sense too, because James does not take into account the fact that the technology is not actually being used.
Jennifer Janowsky
PowerScore Staff
PowerScore Staff
Posts: 91
Joined: Sun Aug 20, 2017 11:58 pm
Points: 91

In the case of (A), James's conclusion is questioned by Marta, not his claims. His claims that rhodium can be extracted from waste and that these power converters that clean are not questioned, however Marta does question his conclusion that nuclear power is therefore contributing to a cleaner environment.

For (C), this answer choice describes circular reasoning, in which James would use his conclusion as evidence for itself. However, he presents other claims in support of his conclusion, so this is not the case.

As you said, (D) is correct because James failed to take into account the fact that the technology he described is not actually being used to clean the environment.

I hope this helps!