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Analysis of Argument: Please critique and provide you inputs

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Analysis of Argument: Please critique and provide you inputs [#permalink] New post 08 Apr 2010, 23:26
HI members,
Please critique on following analysis of an argument essay and provide me any inputs/suggestions.My exam is in 10 days and this would be of great help

The following appeared in an article in a health and fitness magazine:

"Scientific research has shown that Clear-One Bottled Water has many minerals needed for good health and that it is totally free of bacteria. Residents of the town where the water is bottled get sick less frequently that the national average. Even though Clear-One is higher priced than the other bottled waters, it is a good long term investment in your health."

The argument claims that Clear-One bottled water is a good long term investment in health for consumers even though it is highly priced. To support this claim, the argument cites a scientific research which has shown that Clear-One
bottled water contains many useful minerals and is free from any bacteria. Further to prove its point, the argument illustrates that the frequency of getting sick for the residents of the town, where the water is bottled, is less than the
national average. Though the claim do have some merit, but stated in this way it fails to mention some key factors on the basis of which it can be evaluated. The conclusion is based on questionable assumptions for which there is no clear evidence.
Therefore the argument is rather weak, unconvincing and flawed.

First, the argument basis its conclusion on an anonymous scientific research claiming that Clear-One bottled water is bacteria-free and has many minerals good for health. There are no specific research details provided in the argument like how this research was conducted, which scientific agency did this research, how it was funded etc. It may happen that the research was funded by Clear-One itself or was conducted by some unrecognizable agency having vested interests in the output of the research. In that case this research will not show the complete picture and would be biased. So in absence of all the details related to the research, it would be premature to conclude anything.

Second, the argument's illustration, regarding the wellness of residents of the town where water is bottled, is inherently flawed because no correlation between the health of the residents and the bottling of Clear-One water is mentioned. Mere
presence of the Clear-one factory in the town does not suffice this claim. The residents of the town may be healthy because of many other reasons like they follow healthy food habits, they exercise regularly etc. They might even not be drinking the
water bottled by Clear-one but rather bottled by some other company whose products are of higher quality. So this illustration is without any solid ground and is unconvincing.

Moreover, the argument goes on to conclude that Clear-One bottled water is a good long term investment in health without providing any relevant evidence. Clear-one will not be a good investment in a person's health if there are other companies
in the market which provide the same or better quality bottled water at a cheaper price. It is mentioned that Clear-one water is priced higher but that does not mean that the quality of water is also better compared to that of its competitors.
So the conclusion cannot be drawn in absence of the relevant facts regarding the comparison of both price and quality of water bottled by Clear-one vis-à-vis its competitors.

In sum, the argument is flawed and unreasonable. It could be considerably strengthened if it provides all the relevant facts supporting the scientific research conducted along with the exact reasons for the good health of residents of the town.
Also it could have been helpful to draw a concrete conclusion if the argument had provided a comparison between the quality of bottled water by Clear-one and by its competitors in the market. Without all these contributing factors the argument does not hold good.
Analysis of Argument: Please critique and provide you inputs   [#permalink] 08 Apr 2010, 23:26
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