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 Sophia123
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#41018
Hi!

I am a bit confused about this question. I narrowed it down to both A and B and selected B because I thought if I were defending the punitive measure against someone in support of the remedial measure I would want to undermine their argument about harming the economy. I'm not sure if that was the best method of selecting an answer - could someone please explain why A was the better choice?

Thank you in advance!

-Sophia
 Eric Ockert
PowerScore Staff
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#41076
Hi Sophia!

You may be right that that strategy would be a more effective counter to the remedial measure, but that isn't what the question is asking. You want to stay focused on what you know about the beliefs of those who adhered to the punitive theory. Remember, Reading Comprehension is almost entirely an exercise in provability; it's about selecting answers you can prove from the text.

So here, the punitive defenders are advocating punishment for those who break this social contract. Answer choice (B) is really advocating for a deterrent to protect the economy. This does lean more towards the argument of those who would argue for the "public good" aspect of bankruptcy law. However, we really don't know the "punitive" advocates position on this issue.
 Littletiger1888
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#80134
Why is E wrong? It basically says that if the employees are as guilty as the owner, then the employees deserve the same punishment.
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 KelseyWoods
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#80168
Hi Littletiger1888!

Careful with the wording here. Answer choice (E) doesn't say that if the employees are as guilty as the owner, they deserve the same punishment. Rather, it states: "The employees of a large bankrupt enterprise should be considered just as negligent as the owner of a bankrupt sole proprietorship."

Answer choice (E) is just about whether they should be considered guilty, not what the punishment should be. It doesn't say "if the employees are as guilty as the owner...", it just says that they are as guilty as the owner. And, again, it tell us nothing about what the consequence of that guilt should be. Should they go to prison? Should they be allowed to keep earning wages so that they can pay off their creditors? The punitive theory of bankruptcy legislation is only about what consequences should be given out for bankruptcy, not how we decide who is guilty of negligence in a bankruptcy. So we don't know what supporters of the punitive theory would say in terms of whether the employees should or should not be considered negligent.

Hope this helps!

Best,
Kelsey
 KG!
  • Posts: 84
  • Joined: May 26, 2020
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#95959
Eric Ockert wrote: Tue Oct 31, 2017 6:07 pm Hi Sophia!

You may be right that that strategy would be a more effective counter to the remedial measure, but that isn't what the question is asking. You want to stay focused on what you know about the beliefs of those who adhered to the punitive theory. Remember, Reading Comprehension is almost entirely an exercise in provability; it's about selecting answers you can prove from the text.

So here, the punitive defenders are advocating punishment for those who break this social contract. Answer choice (B) is really advocating for a deterrent to protect the economy. This does lean more towards the argument of those who would argue for the "public good" aspect of bankruptcy law. However, we really don't know the "punitive" advocates position on this issue.
Hi! I'm still having trouble with why A is the better answer than B. I totally agree with the OP, that to defend the punitive position then you'd show how bankruptcy would hurt the economy. I understand that those of the punitive theory consider the social contract, however, I still think that they would have a defense like B. From my initial reading it just wasn't clear that we'd only have to focus/keep in mind the punitive theory's beliefs, so I'm worried about how'd I catch this next time in a problem.

Thanks in advance!!
 Adam Tyson
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#96172
The problem with answer E is that there is no evidence in the passage that the supporters of the punitive approach were concerned with the impact on the economy. This is a form of Must Be True question, so we need evidence taken directly from the text that supports the answer and shows those people would be likely to agree with it. Is it possible that those supporters of punishment might say this? Sure. Does it seem reasonable that they would agree with it, in addition to their stated position? Maybe. But is there evidence in the passage that they believe this to be true? No, none at all. That's a good enough reason to reject it.

But wait, there's more!

The supporters of the punitive approach believed that punishment was required because people who didn't pay their debts were, essentially, bad people doing bad things. If you asked one of those supporters "why do you want to punish them? Is it to prevent harm to the economy?", they would likely say "no, it's because they deserve to be punished for doing the bad things." The text makes clear that they aren't trying to prevent any harm, but are instead reacting to wrongdoing after the fact. Thus, there's actually evidence in the text that they would likely disagree with answer B!

Don't pick an answer just because it seems like maybe it could be true. Don't make assumptions about what the people being written about might also believe. You must base your answers solely on what the text provides. Any other approach violates the Fact Test. To put it in legal terms, answer B "assumes facts not in evidence," and that's not what we are supposed to do on the LSAT.

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