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Complete Question Explanation

Method of Reasoning. The correct answer choice is (C)

Contrary to the claims made in the newspaper article on Britain’s unions, the author concludes that the strength of these unions is not declining. Her rationale is that strong unions do not need to call strikes, which is why the decreasing number of strikes is evidence of strength and not weakness. Because the author relies upon the same evidence used in the article (decreasing number of strikes) to draw an opposite conclusion (unions are strong, not weak – as the article suggested), answer choice (C) is correct.

Answer choice (A): The author does not question the accuracy of the evidence used in the article (she never suggested, for instance, that the number of strikes in Britain is not declining). Rather, she used the same evidence to draw a different conclusion. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (B): Just because the article drew an incorrect conclusion from the evidence presented does not mean that its conclusion is outdated. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (C): This is the correct answer choice. See discussion above.

Answer choice (D): The author never suggested that the article’s writers had an ulterior motive for publishing their piece. There is no Source Argument flaw here. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (E): Even if unions and management do share some interests in common (such as profitable and humane working conditions), this is not the central premise of the author’s argument, and therefore ignoring it is not the newspaper’s main flaw. This answer choice is incorrect.
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I answered this one correctly. However, I am a bit unclear about B). It says that the analysis is outdated. Isn't it true? The evidences are correct, but the conclusions held by the newspaper articles are not correct. Can't we say that they are outdated?

When I read the argument, I was able to predict C). It saved a lot of time, but when I revisited the problem, B) started annoying me :( Please help me :(

 Adam Tyson
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Answer B talks about "detailing historical changes". Where was that in our stimulus? What were the historical changes? This is a Method of Reasoning question, which falls into our first family of question types and is subject to the "fact test". The bit about historical changes fails that test - it's not in the stimulus, so it cannot be in the correct answer choice.

One other thing - if the issue is that the analysis is outdated, it suggests that it may have been correct at some point but is no longer correct due to changes over time. Is there anything here to suggest that the author believes that the newspaper's analysis was at some point correct? I don't think so - it is instead saying that the analysis misinterpreted a set of data in drawing its conclusion. It's saying it was wrong from the very start.


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