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 ShannonOh22
  • Posts: 70
  • Joined: Aug 15, 2019
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#70913
Dave Killoran wrote: I'm not sure how to respond to your post other than to say that this is how LSAC sees it, and so we really have no choice here but to try to understand why they see it this way. Trust me, I've been in the position of disagreeing with the LSAT before, but generally it's a losing battle (actually, it always is lol).

In this case, what we have is a first definition of anarchy as "the absence of government," and a later definition of anarchy as "chaos." That is a leap that I personally see as being too big since I wouldn't equate those two things (while they could ultimately turn out the same, there is no guarantee of that).
Hi Dave,

I appreciated your response to the other user in your above post, and had a quick follow up question. In your podcasts about Flaw, you mention certain Flaw questions in which none of the answers immediately jump out/seem to be correct. Would this question qualify as one of those? I thought each answer choice could have each applied, albeit in equally weak ways...

A) I kept this as a contender just because it was the first one and wasn't obviously wrong, but to be honest, I completely skipped over the fact that anarchy was actually defined in 2 different ways. Reading it back, I see it now. But obviously the goal is to recognize something like that WHILE taking the test! :)

B) if read a certain way, this could arguably be an example of yet another definition of anarchy - "laissez-faire capitalism taken to its logical extreme"...and although the argument doesn't exactly say it's "rejected", that idea is certainly implied by the context, and the sentence that follows "But these theorists' views ignore the fundamental principle..."

C) the truth or falsity of a view not being determined by the number of people who believe it is inherently a correct statement, no? And the argument does deal with numbers..."a few theorists", "some theorists", "one writer", etc.

D) I chose this answer, because I felt the argument did presume "an acceptable social philosophy must promote peace and order", as stated in the second-to-last sentence of the stimulus...but I see now the word "flourish" disqualifies this answer

E) Again, this is implied by the overall tone of the argument. The author starts out by classifying the view as "extreme", and then goes on to say "the theorists' views ignore the fundamental principle of social philosophy (interject presumption about successful society needing to be peaceful), and [that it] accordingly deserves no further attention."

I also get tripped up by the fact that "key term shifts meaning" is generally an incorrect trap answer choice. I know it's not ideal to generalize, but after umpteen thousand LSAT questions, I have fallen into that habit.

For the last 2 months of my study, I've been trying my level best to get "inside" the minds of the LSAT writers, but I'm having trouble differentiating between their version of "real", and a basic level of interpretation that comes from context and tone when reading a stimulus. Would you be kind enough to point out where I am going wrong on my interpretation of the answer choices as detailed above? Any insight at all (especially from you - or Jon, I haven't forgotten about Jon :) ) would be GREATLY appreciated!
 cmnoury1221
  • Posts: 21
  • Joined: Sep 11, 2019
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#71013
Hello,
Is answer choice D wrong because there is not conditional that frames "peace" and necessary? -- rather it is simply "promote peace and order" ?

Thanks!
Carolyn
 Paul Marsh
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
  • Posts: 290
  • Joined: Oct 15, 2019
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#71286
Hi Carolyn!

Answer choice (D) is wrong because Bowens never assumes in his argument that a peaceful society will flourish. For a Flaw question, our correct answer choice has to point to something incorrect about the way the speaker reached his or her conclusion. Bowens's conclusion is about why anarchist theorists are in the wrong; the idea that any peaceful society will flourish is not used as an assumption to reach that conclusion. So we can eliminate (D). Hope that helps!
 ericj_williams
  • Posts: 79
  • Joined: Jan 19, 2020
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#89224
Dave Killoran wrote: Sat Apr 27, 2019 4:14 pm
lsatretaker wrote:Hello,

I fail to see how the decision to describe anarchy as both "the absence of government" and "a social philosophy that countenances chaos" constitutes an illicit shift and how describing it as "a social philosophy that countenances chaos" constitutes a definition. As I see it, the author's argument is weak because he doesn't provide sufficient evidence that anarchy is 1. a social philosophy or 2. a social philosophy that countenances chaos. Does adding an unjustified description fall under the umbrella of the flaw of re-defining terms?

Further, something can be a "social philosophy that countenances chaos" while still being "the absence of government." And something can be described without being given meaning. This author simply describes the term at hand as one thing, then immediately moves into a discussion of a separate characteristic of the term, which includes premises and a conclusion based on the separate characteristic. How can we know when a term has been "defined"?

Thank you!
Hi Retaker,

I'm not sure how to respond to your post other than to say that this is how LSAC sees it, and so we really have no choice here but to try to understand why they see it this way. Trust me, I've been in the position of disagreeing with the LSAT before, but generally it's a losing battle (actually, it always is lol).

In this case, what we have is a first definition of anarchy as "the absence of government," and a later definition of anarchy as "chaos." That is a leap that I personally see as being too big since I wouldn't equate those two things (while they could ultimately turn out the same, there is no guarantee of that). At this point, I'm not sure what more to say about it? LSAC saw it as a problem, and you did not, but we have no choice but to accept their view here :/

You mention that, "This author simply describes the term at hand as one thing, then immediately moves into a discussion of a separate characteristic of the term, which includes premises and a conclusion based on the separate characteristic." I'd say that the term is defined at the beginning, and then at the end that term is again defined, but differently. The author stated what it was in each case, which is enough to constitute a definition in my eyes.

I'm not sure this helps much. You seem to clearly understand the flaw they are describing (which is awesome) but disagree that it's a flaw. At that point, it's a no-win situation unfortunately.

Thanks!
Yeah. I got this one wrong too and it's a good example of just giving the LSAT what it wants.

I mean I don't think I'm crazy in saying I can attribute another quality to a concept without there being an illicit term shift.

Anarchy is the absence of government. Quality one.

Anarchy also countenances chaos. If I introduce a second quality of a concept, is it a MUST that I also be illicitly shifting a term. No....I can introduce a second quality without necessarily "shifting," but that's LSAT for ya.
 Robert Carroll
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
  • Posts: 1008
  • Joined: Dec 06, 2013
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#89232
Hi Eric,

But those are two different definitions of anarchy, and if the author wants to disagree with those who use anarchy in one sense by using the other definition, it's not entirely up to the author which definition to use. It's like saying "You say that the lead in pencils is safe because it's actually graphite. But lead is a poisonous metal. So pencils are not safe." I'm allowed to use "lead" in different ways, but if I am arguing with someone who uses "lead" in one sense and bring in another sense that they haven't yet approved of, whatever I'm arguing against, it won't be them. And that'll be a flawed argument, on the LSAT and (as the LSAT is intended to model) real life.

Robert Carroll

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