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Complete Question Explanation

Assumption. The correct answer choice is (D)

This advertisement concludes that to be smart, one should choose Clark brand-name parts. This conclusion is based on the following premises:
  • Premise 1: The Clark parts satisfy the world’s toughest standards—our government tests.
    Premise 2: With foreign parts you may get poor construction that will necessitate repairs.
    Conclusion: To be smart, choose Clarks.
Although the ad does not specify the government standards, the assumption must be that the Clark parts which pass the government tests are better than foreign made parts.

Answer choice (A): There is no reference or implication to Clarks’ being available exclusively in this country, so this is not in assumption on which the ad relies.

Answer choice (B): The ad does not make the claim that foreign made parts are unsuitable—just that they may be poorly constructed.

Answer choice (C): The author does not claim that there are no foreign parts which satisfy our government standards, but just that with foreign parts, one runs the risk of poorly constructed parts that will lead to the need for repairs.

Answer choice (D): This is the correct answer choice, reflecting the prephrased answer presented in the discussion of the stimulus above. If the ad is to base its conclusion on the premises presented, then the author must assume that Clark’s parts are better constructed than foreign made parts.

Answer choice (E): The ad claims that foreign parts may be poorly constructed—just because a part is made for a car that’s made here, that doesn’t keep it from being a foreign part. So those described in this answer choice, according to the ad may be of questionable construction as well. Thus, this cannot be an assumption on which the ad’s conclusion relies.
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Hi Powerscore,
I was able to narrow the answers choices down to D and E, but I'm still having trouble understanding exactly why E is wrong. Could someone please explain the difference?

 Adam Tyson
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Sure thing, Michelle! Answer E is mixing up what is meant in the stimulus by "foreign-made parts". The stimulus is talking about parts that are made outside this country - the parts themselves are foreign. Answer E, in contrast, is talking about the cars for which those parts are made! It assumes that if a part is made for a domestic car, then the part itself must also be domestically made. But that's not required by the stimulus, and in fact the stimulus may even assume the opposite!

The ad wants you to buy Clark parts, because they are apparently made here (not foreign) and they pass this government's tests. It cautions against foreign made parts - parts made elsewhere. But those parts could be for domestic cars, like Chinese manufactured transmissions for Detroit-built Chevys, or German airbags for Teslas made in California. See the issue? A part made for a domestic car could still be a foreign made part, and could still be poorly made.

That should eliminate E for you, leaving D as your only contender, and it's a winner!
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Can someone explain why C is wrong?
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 Dave Killoran
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Hi Ser,

The problem with (C) is that it goes too far. The advertisement doesn't claim or require that no foreign-made parts satisfy our government standards, just that some don't.

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This question really tripped me up. I tried the negation technique on D and E and the both seemed to weaken the argument after negating the answer choice. What is the approach here when two Acs seem to work with the assumption negation technique? Is there something else i should have done? I'm still not entirely sure why E is wrong even after reading the thread above. Please help!

 Adam Tyson
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The negation of answer E would be "parts made for cars manufactured in our country could be poorly constructed." That actually strengthens the argument, Julie, because the author thinks some foreign-made parts may be poorly constructed. The negation of answer E does nothing to weaken the claims that Clark parts are the only ones to pass those tough tests, and that they are therefore more reliable than others.

But the negation of D is "parts that satisfy those tests ARE as poorly constructed as foreign parts", and if that's the case then there is no reason to prefer Clark parts. The argument completely falls apart.

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