- Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:28 pm
Your analysis there is missing one crucial bit of information, lawadvocate!, and that is "for the sake of consistency" in the conclusion. The author doesn't just think Vernon should get his job back - he thinks that "consistency" requires that. But that fails to consider that there is another way to achieve consistency, which is to fire the other people who have behaved as Vernon did. That is a viable alternative to the one the author proposed that also achieves that consistency.
If Vernon's behavior was unprofessional enough to justify firing him, and others behaved the same way, that suggests pretty strongly that the behavior should override any other considerations. It doesn't matter how good an employee he is, or they are, or how much any of them contribute - his behavior was sufficient, so theirs should be too. Sure, those other folks might be valuable in some way that Vernon was not, but he also might have been valuable in some way that they were not. We just can't assume anything either way.
What we can do is look at the alternatives, and the author left out a fairly obvious one. Don't bring back the guy who was justly fired - fire the guys who were just as bad as that guy was!
Beware the False Dilemma here, where the author presumes that one particular choice must be made without giving proper attention to other potential choices. "It's not getting hotter, so it must be getting colder" leaves out the possibility of the temperature holding steady. "I won't drink Pepsi, so I have to have Coke" leaves out a whole world of other possible options, including other colas, sodas that are not colas, and all the non-soda options out there, as well as not having anything to drink. Both of these are variations on the False Dilemma flaw that we sometimes see on the LSAT.
Adam M. Tyson
PowerScore LSAT, GRE, ACT and SAT Instructor
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