Reply To: PT 52-1-10

January 5, 2016 at 12:22 pm #1193
dannypearlberg
Participant

I can’t speak for Mr. Kim of course, but here’s how I would approach this question.

First, make sure you can identify the conclusion and the reasoning used to support the conclusion. Here’s how that would go on this question:

Conclusion: When the mayor’s plan is first implemented, payment of the downtown driving charge will not be effectively enforced. [From what you wrote above it isn’t clear to me whether or not you identified the conclusion precisely- the key part here is that payment of the charge will not be effectively enforced when the mayor’s plan is first implemented]

Reasoning: (i) Payment of the charge will be enforced using a highly sophisticated system, without which mass evasion of the charge will result. (ii) The highly sophisticated system won’t be ready until the end of next year.

Now ask yourself: Is it possible that everything in the reasoning is true, and yet the conclusion is false? The answer will always be yes for these questions. Your job is to figure out how even if everything in the reasoning is true, the conclusion doesn’t necessarily follow. It can be helpful to try to put yourself in the shoes of whoever is making the argument- why do they think that the conclusion must follow from the reasoning? On this question, even if it is true that the highly sophisticated system won’t be ready until the end of next year, since we don’t know when the mayor’s plan is going to be implemented, we don’t know whether or not the highly sophisticated system will be ready by the time the mayor’s plan is first implemented. Given the information in the stimulus, it is surely possible that the when the mayor’s plan is first implemented, payment of the charge will be effectively enforced- perhaps the mayor’s plan won’t be implemented until the end of next year!

So why does the author of the argument think that the conclusion must follow from the reasoning? It must be because they are assuming that the mayor’s’ plan will be implemented before the end of next year, i.e. before the sophisticated system will be ready. Therein lies the flaw: The conclusion only follows from the reasoning if the mayor’s plan will be implemented before the end of next year, but the passage doesn’t tell us that the mayor’s plan will be implemented before the end of next year.

The part about the mass evasion is telling us that the sophisticated system is necessary for effective enforcement of the plan, because without the sophisticated system, mass evasion of the charge will result.

Hope that helps!