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# Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike

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Magoosh GMAT Instructor
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Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  20 Jul 2012, 10:30
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Difficulty:

25% (low)

Question Stats:

73% (02:08) correct 26% (01:56) wrong based on 79 sessions
Quote:
Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike if management does not meet their demands for an immediate 5% pay raise and a paid lunch break. Further, workers are insisting that the company rehire 12 employees who were laid off for complaining about substandard wages and working conditions. It is well-known that Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports. We believe a strike is inevitable.

Identify an assumption required by the journalist’s argument

(A) The workers would likely be willing to compromise with respect to the paid lunch break.
(B) Facsum is unwilling to negotiate with the workers.
(C) The majority of the losses were due to a significant decline in profit margins.
(D) The 12 laid-off employees were not laid off for any performance-related reasons.
(E) Facsum likely does not have sufficient cash flow or cash reserves to support increased expenses.

Can someone explain why B) is incorrect? Thanks

Dear Voodoo Child -----

So, an assumption is the invisible bridge, the link, between the evidence and the conclusion. Here, we have:

Evidence: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike if management does not meet their demands for an immediate 5% pay raise and a paid lunch break.
Evidence: Further, workers are insisting that the company rehire 12 employees who were laid off for complaining about substandard wages and working conditions.
Evidence: It is well-known that Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports.
Conclusion: We believe a strike is inevitable.

Let's take a business-oriented look at this argument. In business, the #1 priority is the bottom line. That third sentence of evidence is, in business terms, screaming loud. A giant alarm should go off in your head when you read that sentence When I read that, I immediately thought -- no wonder there are complaints about higher wages! Facsum can't afford a dime more for anything if they have been operating in the red! That business-minded sense (which, I point out, will be hugely important in any MBA program!) leads directly to the OA.

Why is (B) wrong? Well, first of all, the argument says nothing about how willing or unwilling to negotiate Facsum is. We get no evidence in that direction at all --- no statements about workers asked for negotiations and Facsum refused, no statements from Facsum about unwillingness to negotiate. It's easy to imagine a scenario in which Facsum management is perfectly willing to negotiate --- each week, they sit down with union representatives and say, "So, we have no money because the entire company is under water, and therefore we can't afford spending a single penny more than we spend now. In fact, we will have to make significant cuts soon. Given that constraint, we are more than happy to discuss any possibilities. What would you like to see?" They could be 100% willing to negotiate ---within the crushingly tight constraints --- and it still wouldn't avert a strike.

Admittedly, the piece of evidence about firing worker who complained suggests that management-labor relationships aren't the very best, so yes, it is probably the case that, in addition to the other problems, the management is also unwilling to negotiate. That is probably true.

The thing is --- they have no money. They can't afford any raises because they have no money. That is 100% definitely true. That's why the OA is much much stronger than (B).

Does all this make sense?

Mike
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Last edited by mikemcgarry on 25 Jul 2012, 09:55, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: strike threatened [#permalink]  20 Jul 2012, 10:57
Mike,
Thanks for your reply. However, when we say that "Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports", doesn't it automatically mean that the company doesn't have sufficient cash flow to support additional expenses? I thought that E) is a restatement of the Premise, and hence is a premise booster. Thoughts?
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 1614
Followers: 373

Kudos [?]: 1445 [0], given: 24

Re: strike threatened [#permalink]  20 Jul 2012, 12:37
Expert's post
voodoochild wrote:
Mike,
Thanks for your reply. However, when we say that "Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports", doesn't it automatically mean that the company doesn't have sufficient cash flow to support additional expenses? I thought that E) is a restatement of the Premise, and hence is a premise booster. Thoughts?

Well, on the GMAT, anything inferred (like an unstated assumption) is going to stick very close to the text. When they tell us "Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports", they are definitely telling us that cash-flow is a problem at Facsum. To say from there, "Facsum likely does not have sufficient cash flow or cash reserves to support increased expenses" --- this is an assumption --- it's almost the same, it's almost an unavoidable conclusion, but it is slightly different. In particular, we know they were in the red for 3 of 4 quarters, which by definition is a cash-flow problem, but technically we have no information about their cash-reserves ---- technically, they could have lousy cash-flow but robust cash-reserves. Now, in practice, of course, that would never happen --- any real-world company would draw from any available cash-reserves to offset a cash-flow shortfall, so it didn't have to report a quarterly loss to the SEC. Reporting even quarterly loss is disastrous in the stock market, and multiple quarterly losses are the kiss of death. Stocks can lose more than 90% of their value because of such news. So, yes, in just about any real world company, multiply quarterly losses would suggest not only a cash-flow problem but also a lack of sufficient cash-reserves, which otherwise would have allowed the company to mask the problem. In practice, the evidence statement in the text is just about the same as (E), but again, that's often the case on the GMAT, on CR and RC --- what you need to infer is only a micro-separation away from what is stated in black-and-white. It's never wrong for being too close.

I think that the whole "restatement of the premise" idea is going to hurt you more than it will help you. Many assumptions on GMAT CR are going to look very much like the premise, and times, might be virtually indistinguishable from a premise. The only time a statement that sounds a lot like one of the premises would not be the assumption would be if it doesn't really provide any meaningful link between that premise and the conclusion. Here, the way (E) is phrased makes it abundantly clear that it is part of the causal sequence --- cash-flow problems ---> no cash for raises ---> no raises ---> strike is inevitable. Be extremely suspicious of the CR strategy of rejecting possible assumptions because they sound like restatements of the premise. In fact, if you completely blot that strategy out of your mind, on average, you will probably be much better off.

Does that make sense?

Mike
_________________

Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Manager
Joined: 16 Feb 2011
Posts: 197
Schools: ABCD
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Kudos [?]: 17 [0], given: 78

Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  22 Jul 2012, 16:54
mikemcgarry wrote:
Quote:
Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike if management does not meet their demands for an immediate 5% pay raise and a paid lunch break. Further, workers are insisting that the company rehire 12 employees who were laid off for complaining about substandard wages and working conditions. It is well-known that Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports. We believe a strike is inevitable.

Identify an assumption required by the journalist’s argument

(A) The workers would likely be willing to compromise with respect to the paid lunch break.
(B) Facsum is unwilling to negotiate with the workers.
(C) The majority of the losses were due to a significant decline in profit margins.
(D) The 12 laid-off employees were not laid off for any performance-related reasons.
(E) Facsum likely does not have sufficient cash flow or cash reserves to support increased expenses.

Can someone explain why B) is incorrect? Thanks

Dear Voodoo Child -----

So, an assumption is the invisible bridge, the link, between the evidence and the conclusion. Here, we have:

Evidence: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike if management does not meet their demands for an immediate 5% pay raise and a paid lunch break.
Evidence: Further, workers are insisting that the company rehire 12 employees who were laid off for complaining about substandard wages and working conditions.
Evidence: It is well-known that Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports.
Conclusion: We believe a strike is inevitable.

Let's take a business-oriented look at this argument. In business, the #1 priority is the bottom line. That third sentence of evidence is, in business terms, screaming loud. A giant alarm should go off in your head when you read that sentence When I read that, I immediately thought -- no wonder there are complaints about higher wages! Facsum can't afford a dime more for anything if they have been operating in the red! That business-minded sense (which, I point out, will be hugely important in any MBA program!) leads directly to the OA.

Why is (B) wrong? Well, first of all, the argument says nothing about how willing or unwilling to negotiate Facsum is. We get no evidence in that direction at all --- no statements about workers asked for negotiations and Facsum refused, no statements from Facsum about unwillingness to negotiate. It's easy to imagine a scenario in which Facsum management is perfectly willing to negotiate --- each week, they sit down with union representatives and say, "So, we have no money because the entire company is under water, and therefore we can't afford spending a single penny more than we spend now. In fact, we will have to make significant cuts soon. Given that constraint, we are more than happy to discuss any possibilities. What would you like to see?" They could be 100% willing to negotiate ---within the crushingly tight constraints --- and it still wouldn't avert a strike.

Admittedly, the piece of evidence about firing worker who complained suggests that management-labor relationships are the very best, so yes, it is probably the case that, in addition to the other problems, the management is also unwilling to negotiate. That is probably true.

The thing is --- they have no money. They can't afford any raises because they have no money. That is 100% definitely true. That's why the OA is much much stronger than (B).

Does all this make sense?

Mike

Mike,
This question is a bummer. Both of us agree that E) is a premise booster. However, every book that I have read "prescribes" to be wary of such answers. However, I am still not sure why E) is necessary assumption. I see why B) COULD be a necessary assumption. In real world, strikes happen when the parties are unwilling to negotiate. Hence, given the financial conditions, if the strike is inevitable, then it is necessary, but not sufficient, to assume that there mustn't be any strike.

I am still not following because -ve profits automatically mean insufficient reserves to support expenses. I am not sure what other gaps I am missing.....

Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 1614
Followers: 373

Kudos [?]: 1445 [0], given: 24

Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  23 Jul 2012, 11:20
Expert's post
voodoochild wrote:
Mike,
This question is a bummer. Both of us agree that E) is a premise booster. However, every book that I have read "prescribes" to be wary of such answers. However, I am still not sure why E) is necessary assumption. I see why B) COULD be a necessary assumption. In real world, strikes happen when the parties are unwilling to negotiate. Hence, given the financial conditions, if the strike is inevitable, then it is necessary, but not sufficient, to assume that there mustn't be any strike.

I am still not following because -ve profits automatically mean insufficient reserves to support expenses. I am not sure what other gaps I am missing.....

voodoochild
First of all, I don't know what you're reading, but I must say, I am suspicious about it. There are many substandard GMAT prep books out there. On the GMAT, anything you are asked to infer (including the assumption of an argument) is going to stick relatively close to the black-and-white text of the argument. I would say --- never automatically reject a possible assumption just because it looks like an evidence booster. If an answer choice seems to strengthen a piece of evidence, then the next test is to negate the answer choice and see if that cripples the argument. If you can negate the statement, and the argument still survives, then what you have is not an assumption. That's the real test of an assumption. In one of the above entries, I did that with (B) to demonstrate that it doesn't necessarily destroy the argument --- that's proof that (B) is not an assumption.

You said: "In real world, strikes happen when the parties are unwilling to negotiate" --- or, when folks are willing to negotiate but, because of dire financial constraints, they come to the negotiation table with nothing to offer. Either can lead to a strike. So consider the two scenarios:

I) Facsum management would love to negotiate, but they have no money, nothing to offer the workers that the workers want

II) Facsum management are greedy self-centered moneygrubbers and simply don't want to negotiate with the workers

It's completely true --- either one of these would lead directly to a strike. The question is: which is supported by the text of the argument? The argument gives us concrete evidence that Facsum is running out of money, which supports (I). On the other hand, we have absolutely no indication of how willing or unwilling they are to negotiate ---- (II) could be true, but we have no basis for saying so. If two assumption choices do about the same thing to the argument, but one is anchored in the text and one isn't, always choose the one with a textual anchor.

Also, I'll say: be careful. You said, "I am still not following because negative profits automatically mean insufficient reserves to support expenses." What the argument literally says is: "Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports." Literally, they had more money going out, for costs, than coming in, as revenues. Yes, in all likelihood, that also means insufficient reserves. If I were a betting man, I would bet that this statement implies insufficient reserves. But technically --- profits could be off because, say, of a temporary increase in the cost of resources, or an odd fluctuation in the market as a whole, or some unusual thing like that. Technically, they could have a big pile of money in the bank as they simply watch their quarterly profits bounce up and down. As I indicated above, in the real world, any company experiencing a temporary dip in profits, for any reason, probably would yank some money out of reserves to mask that loss. The fact that Facsum had a loss that it couldn't mask certainly suggests that it doesn't have any financial reserves from which to draw. Quite likely, it's true, but technically, we don't know that Facsum has no money in the bank. That was not stated in black-and-white. It seems an ineluctable consequence of what is stated, but right there, we are getting into the stuff of GMAT inference --- what's not actually stated in black-and-white, but has a direct connection to what is stated? That's why (E) can be an assumption and not simply a restatement --- it's not identical to the information we have in black-and-white. This is a hugely important distinction. Again:

a) what is literally stated in black-and-white --- that can only be a restatement, never an assumption or inference

b) what is a virtually unavoidable consequence of what is literally stated in black-and-white --- this is the realm where inferences and assumptions live

It's tempting to conflate statements from (a) with statements from (b), but I hope you see, it's a vitally important distinction.

Does all this make sense?
_________________

Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Manager
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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  24 Jul 2012, 08:28
mikemcgarry wrote:
voodoochild wrote:
Mike,
This question is a bummer. Both of us agree that E) is a premise booster. However, every book that I have read "prescribes" to be wary of such answers. However, I am still not sure why E) is necessary assumption. I see why B) COULD be a necessary assumption. In real world, strikes happen when the parties are unwilling to negotiate. Hence, given the financial conditions, if the strike is inevitable, then it is necessary, but not sufficient, to assume that there mustn't be any strike.

I am still not following because -ve profits automatically mean insufficient reserves to support expenses. I am not sure what other gaps I am missing.....

voodoochild
First of all, I don't know what you're reading, but I must say, I am suspicious about it. There are many substandard GMAT prep books out there. On the GMAT, anything you are asked to infer (including the assumption of an argument) is going to stick relatively close to the black-and-white text of the argument. I would say --- never automatically reject a possible assumption just because it looks like an evidence booster. If an answer choice seems to strengthen a piece of evidence, then the next test is to negate the answer choice and see if that cripples the argument. If you can negate the statement, and the argument still survives, then what you have is not an assumption. That's the real test of an assumption. In one of the above entries, I did that with (B) to demonstrate that it doesn't necessarily destroy the argument --- that's proof that (B) is not an assumption.

You said: "In real world, strikes happen when the parties are unwilling to negotiate" --- or, when folks are willing to negotiate but, because of dire financial constraints, they come to the negotiation table with nothing to offer. Either can lead to a strike. So consider the two scenarios:

I) Facsum management would love to negotiate, but they have no money, nothing to offer the workers that the workers want

II) Facsum management are greedy self-centered moneygrubbers and simply don't want to negotiate with the workers

It's completely true --- either one of these would lead directly to a strike. The question is: which is supported by the text of the argument? The argument gives us concrete evidence that Facsum is running out of money, which supports (I). On the other hand, we have absolutely no indication of how willing or unwilling they are to negotiate ---- (II) could be true, but we have no basis for saying so. If two assumption choices do about the same thing to the argument, but one is anchored in the text and one isn't, always choose the one with a textual anchor.

Also, I'll say: be careful. You said, "I am still not following because negative profits automatically mean insufficient reserves to support expenses." What the argument literally says is: "Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports." Literally, they had more money going out, for costs, than coming in, as revenues. Yes, in all likelihood, that also means insufficient reserves. If I were a betting man, I would bet that this statement implies insufficient reserves. But technically --- profits could be off because, say, of a temporary increase in the cost of resources, or an odd fluctuation in the market as a whole, or some unusual thing like that. Technically, they could have a big pile of money in the bank as they simply watch their quarterly profits bounce up and down. As I indicated above, in the real world, any company experiencing a temporary dip in profits, for any reason, probably would yank some money out of reserves to mask that loss. The fact that Facsum had a loss that it couldn't mask certainly suggests that it doesn't have any financial reserves from which to draw. Quite likely, it's true, but technically, we don't know that Facsum has no money in the bank. That was not stated in black-and-white. It seems an ineluctable consequence of what is stated, but right there, we are getting into the stuff of GMAT inference --- what's not actually stated in black-and-white, but has a direct connection to what is stated? That's why (E) can be an assumption and not simply a restatement --- it's not identical to the information we have in black-and-white. This is a hugely important distinction. Again:

a) what is literally stated in black-and-white --- that can only be a restatement, never an assumption or inference

b) what is a virtually unavoidable consequence of what is literally stated in black-and-white --- this is the realm where inferences and assumptions live

It's tempting to conflate statements from (a) with statements from (b), but I hope you see, it's a vitally important distinction.

Does all this make sense?

Mike,
Thanks for your detailed response. I really don't have words to thank you.

I read in LSAT and GMAT books, by powerscore and Manhattan, that a common trap on necessary Assumption questions is a premise booster.

For instance,
This is an officiial LSAT problem.

Newspaper editor: Law enforcement experts, as well as most citizens, have finally come to recognize that legal prohibitions against gambling all share a common flaw: no matter how diligent the effort, the laws are impossible to enforce. Ethical qualms notwithstanding, when a law fails to be effective, it should not be a law. That is why there should be no legal prohibition against gambling.
Which one of the following, if assumed, allows the argument’s conclusion to be properly drawn?
(A) No effective law is unenforceable.
(B) All enforceable laws are effective.
(C) No legal prohibitions against gambling are enforceable.
(D) Most citizens must agree with a law for the law to be effective.
(E) Most citizens must agree with a law for the law to be enforceable.

C) is a clear cut premise booster. We already know this.

On your point about "negotiation", if the company doesn't have money, why would the workers go on strike for pay hikes (this modifier is important)? Let's consider Greece. The government hardly has funds to run the country. Why would people go on strike to increase wages? I am not able to understand this. The only reason I could think is that the company is unwilling to negotiate. The fact that the company doesn't have cash reserves will not help the workers. No matter what, the company doesn't have the money. STrikes won't help.

Correct?

do you know any official problem in which a correct "necessary" assumption is a premise booster? The above problem is by MGMAT. I am not sure whether it's accurate as per the GMAT standards. I will depend on your experience and guidance. Please help me.

Voodoo
Magoosh GMAT Instructor
Joined: 28 Dec 2011
Posts: 1614
Followers: 373

Kudos [?]: 1445 [0], given: 24

Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  24 Jul 2012, 09:37
Expert's post
voodoochild wrote:
Mike,
Thanks for your detailed response. I really don't have words to thank you. I read in LSAT and GMAT books, by powerscore and Manhattan, that a common trap on necessary Assumption questions is a premise booster. For instance, this is an officiial LSAT problem.

Newspaper editor: Law enforcement experts, as well as most citizens, have finally come to recognize that legal prohibitions against gambling all share a common flaw: no matter how diligent the effort, the laws are impossible to enforce. Ethical qualms notwithstanding, when a law fails to be effective, it should not be a law. That is why there should be no legal prohibition against gambling.
Which one of the following, if assumed, allows the argument’s conclusion to be properly drawn?
(A) No effective law is unenforceable.
(B) All enforceable laws are effective.
(C) No legal prohibitions against gambling are enforceable.
(D) Most citizens must agree with a law for the law to be effective.
(E) Most citizens must agree with a law for the law to be enforceable.

C) is a clear cut premise booster. We already know this.

Yes, that one is a big old softball lobbed at us --- very easy to spot. I don't know about the LSAT, but at least on the GMAT, I would still say: this is a tricky issue. If it's identical to what the evidence says in black-and-white, it could be a premise booster. Here, it definitely leaves us with the feeling, "Duh!, We knew that!" BUT, if it's a shade off, one logical peg beyond what's explicitly stated, then that's no longer a premise booster. And again, a HUGE point --- the big test for an assumption is what happens when you negate it. If negating a statement obliterates the argument, that statement is an assumption.

voodoochild wrote:
On your point about "negotiation", if the company doesn't have money, why would the workers go on strike for pay hikes (this modifier is important)? Let's consider Greece. The government hardly has funds to run the country. Why would people go on strike to increase wages? I am not able to understand this. The only reason I could think is that the company is unwilling to negotiate. The fact that the company doesn't have cash reserves will not help the workers. No matter what, the company doesn't have the money. Strikes won't help. Correct?

When stupid people act in large numbers, anything is possible --- the constraints of logical justification do not apply. You're quite correct --- if Facsum is running out of money, then a worker strike would be utterly pointless --- but that doesn't mean workers wouldn't strike. It's more or less universal for workers who ask for higher wages to hear from management that there's not enough money, regardless of whether management is rolling in dough or running on empty. It would surprise me if a large number of these unskilled workers, with no paid lunch break and substandard working conditions, were diligent aficionados of, say, the WSJ or Bloomberg Business Week. There's a good chance that the workers don't have the full picture about Facsum's real financial state. They know their own needs, and they don't know how much money Facsum has --- depending on the past interactions, they may not trust one iota of what Facsum's management tells them about Facsum's financial state. Workers under this condition would be liable to strike, even though from where we sit, we can see that will be completely feckless. In fact, there have been a large number of strikes in Greece in the past year(!!) --- again, more objective observers in the international community can say --- "What in tarnation are you people thinking?! That's not going to accomplish squat!" We can see that, but it doesn't stop the Greeks from striking. Don't fall into the trap of believing the general public is always logical or always makes sound rational decisions: among other things, that assumption is an express route to losing money in the business world.

voodoochild wrote:
Do you know any official problem in which a correct "necessary" assumption is a premise booster? The above problem is by MGMAT. I am not sure whether it's accurate as per the GMAT standards. I will depend on your experience and guidance. Please help me. Your replies are really really helpful. Voodoo

To the best of my knowledge, the term "premise booster" does not even appear in the OG or its explanations. So far as I can tell, it's not a term GMAC considers at all. I could believe that it's a much bigger deal on the LSAT than it is on the GMAT. Not only am I not aware of an official find-the-assumption question in which the answer is a premise booster, but also, in my mind, the distinction between those two is so vast that I simply cannot imagine any well-written problem having such a solution. I think the above problem, the Fascum question, is a perfectly good GMAT CR question with an unambiguously clear answer -- our extended debate not withstanding --- a question in every respect representative of those on the GMAT. MGMAT tends to produce very high quality material.

Mike
_________________

Mike McGarry
Magoosh Test Prep

Manager
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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  25 Jul 2012, 07:30
mikemcgarry wrote:
voodoochild wrote:
Mike,
Thanks for your detailed response. I really don't have words to thank you. I read in LSAT and GMAT books, by powerscore and Manhattan, that a common trap on necessary Assumption questions is a premise booster. For instance, this is an officiial LSAT problem.

Newspaper editor: Law enforcement experts, as well as most citizens, have finally come to recognize that legal prohibitions against gambling all share a common flaw: no matter how diligent the effort, the laws are impossible to enforce. Ethical qualms notwithstanding, when a law fails to be effective, it should not be a law. That is why there should be no legal prohibition against gambling.
Which one of the following, if assumed, allows the argument’s conclusion to be properly drawn?
(A) No effective law is unenforceable.
(B) All enforceable laws are effective.
(C) No legal prohibitions against gambling are enforceable.
(D) Most citizens must agree with a law for the law to be effective.
(E) Most citizens must agree with a law for the law to be enforceable.

C) is a clear cut premise booster. We already know this.

Yes, that one is a big old softball lobbed at us --- very easy to spot. I don't know about the LSAT, but at least on the GMAT, I would still say: this is a tricky issue. If it's identical to what the evidence says in black-and-white, it could be a premise booster. Here, it definitely leaves us with the feeling, "Duh!, We knew that!" BUT, if it's a shade off, one logical peg beyond what's explicitly stated, then that's no longer a premise booster. And again, a HUGE point --- the big test for an assumption is what happens when you negate it. If negating a statement obliterates the argument, that statement is an assumption.

voodoochild wrote:
On your point about "negotiation", if the company doesn't have money, why would the workers go on strike for pay hikes (this modifier is important)? Let's consider Greece. The government hardly has funds to run the country. Why would people go on strike to increase wages? I am not able to understand this. The only reason I could think is that the company is unwilling to negotiate. The fact that the company doesn't have cash reserves will not help the workers. No matter what, the company doesn't have the money. Strikes won't help. Correct?

When stupid people act in large numbers, anything is possible --- the constraints of logical justification do not apply. You're quite correct --- if Facsum is running out of money, then a worker strike would be utterly pointless --- but that doesn't mean workers wouldn't strike. It's more or less universal for workers who ask for higher wages to hear from management that there's not enough money, regardless of whether management is rolling in dough or running on empty. It would surprise me if a large number of these unskilled workers, with no paid lunch break and substandard working conditions, were diligent aficionados of, say, the WSJ or Bloomberg Business Week. There's a good chance that the workers don't have the full picture about Facsum's real financial state. They know their own needs, and they don't know how much money Facsum has --- depending on the past interactions, they may not trust one iota of what Facsum's management tells them about Facsum's financial state. Workers under this condition would be liable to strike, even though from where we sit, we can see that will be completely feckless. In fact, there have been a large number of strikes in Greece in the past year(!!) --- again, more objective observers in the international community can say --- "What in tarnation are you people thinking?! That's not going to accomplish squat!" We can see that, but it doesn't stop the Greeks from striking. Don't fall into the trap of believing the general public is always logical or always makes sound rational decisions: among other things, that assumption is an express route to losing money in the business world.

voodoochild wrote:
Do you know any official problem in which a correct "necessary" assumption is a premise booster? The above problem is by MGMAT. I am not sure whether it's accurate as per the GMAT standards. I will depend on your experience and guidance. Please help me. Your replies are really really helpful. Voodoo

To the best of my knowledge, the term "premise booster" does not even appear in the OG or its explanations. So far as I can tell, it's not a term GMAC considers at all. I could believe that it's a much bigger deal on the LSAT than it is on the GMAT. Not only am I not aware of an official find-the-assumption question in which the answer is a premise booster, but also, in my mind, the distinction between those two is so vast that I simply cannot imagine any well-written problem having such a solution. I think the above problem, the Fascum question, is a perfectly good GMAT CR question with an unambiguously clear answer -- our extended debate not withstanding --- a question in every respect representative of those on the GMAT. MGMAT tends to produce very high quality material.

Mike

Mike - Thanks for your detailed reply. Unfortunately, I am not 100% convinced with OA. My gut feeling is still saying no no. I truly appreciate your efforts. Not many experts on these forums are so much helpful. In fact, many of them don't even respond to PMs.

Here are my doubts:

#1 - I agree with you that this is a necessary assumption. But the argument breaks if we negate B and E. The assumptions are unstated, and hence should link the premise with the conclusion. In this problem, why would an assumption be that the company doesn't have sufficient reserves?

Analogy - the strike becomes inevitable when the company has money and the management is not willing to give pay hikes. Hence, a good assumption could be that the company, even though reported -ve profits, has sufficient cash reservers (as per the logic explained by you - a company may report -ve profits doesn't necessarily mean 0 cash reservers. For instance, Goldman reported loss. Does it mean that the company went bankrupt? No. I agree with your analysis - very insightful and logical.

Hence, an ideal assumption, according to me, would be that the company has sufficient cash reserves! Otherwise why would the journalist ask for strike! (I guess it's the same question)

#2 - There are some other official LSAT problems where an incorrect answer choice is not directly premise booster but an indirect one. If you see any GMAT problem that has premise booster as an assumption, please let me know. I will keep an eye for it myself.

#3 - If I negate B) - the company is willing to negotiate with the workers, the argument breaks because then the strike is not inevitable.

I am really not sure. I am a bit frustrated However, I haven't given up. I have also requested MGMAT instructors to comment on this problem. However, it is sad that no one has responded to my PM.

I really would like to thank you for support, Mike. You might be spending a substantial amount of time in answering my stupid questions. God bless you.

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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  25 Jul 2012, 09:53
Expert's post
voodoochild wrote:
Mike - Thanks for your detailed reply. Unfortunately, I am not 100% convinced with OA. My gut feeling is still saying no no. I truly appreciate your efforts. Here are my doubts:

#1 - I agree with you that this is a necessary assumption. But the argument breaks if we negate B and E. The assumptions are unstated, and hence should link the premise with the conclusion. In this problem, why would an assumption be that the company doesn't have sufficient reserves?

Analogy - the strike becomes inevitable when the company has money and the management is not willing to give pay hikes. Hence, a good assumption could be that the company, even though reported -ve profits, has sufficient cash reservers (as per the logic explained by you - a company may report -ve profits doesn't necessarily mean 0 cash reservers. For instance, Goldman reported loss. Does it mean that the company went bankrupt? No. I agree with your analysis - very insightful and logical.

Hence, an ideal assumption, according to me, would be that the company has sufficient cash reserves! Otherwise why would the journalist ask for strike! (I guess it's the same question)

#2 - There are some other official LSAT problems where an incorrect answer choice is not directly premise booster but an indirect one. If you see any GMAT problem that has premise booster as an assumption, please let me know. I will keep an eye for it myself.

#3 - If I negate B) - the company is willing to negotiate with the workers, the argument breaks because then the strike is not inevitable.

I am really not sure. I am a bit frustrated However, I haven't given up. I have also requested MGMAT instructors to comment on this problem. However, it is sad that no one has responded to my PM.

I really would like to thank you for support, Mike. You might be spending a substantial amount of time in answering my stupid questions. God bless you.

So, let's briefly consider four hypothetical scenarios. In all these cases, we'll assume everything stated in the prompt is true --- some malcontent workers already fired, losses in 3 of 4 quarters, etc.

Case A = Facsum has cash reserves and is willing to negotiate
Case B = Facsum has cash reserves and is not willing to negotiate
Case C = Facsum has no cash reserves and is willing to negotiate
Case D = Facsum has no cash reserves and is not willing to negotiate

In Case A, there would be no reason for a strike --- the company has the money and is willing to negioate.

In Cases B & D, clearly there would be reason for strike --- the company doesn't want to negotiate, so the worker's only recourse would be to strike.

I think Case C is the case about which you have doubts. I would argue that a strike is also inevitable in Case C. Let's think about this.

In Case C, Facsum management is genuinely willing to negotiate. They come to the table and say, with complete honesty, "We have absolutely no money to give you. We can discuss any changes at all you want to make in your working conditions, as long as they don't involve one additional dime." Now, keep in mind, in Case B, management probably would come to the table and say exactly the same thing, only in Case B, it would not be honest at all --- it would be a bald-faced lie. That's how "not willing to negotiate" often plays out --- it's not that they never come to the table at all, but rather they come and stonewall. Now, the workers and their representatives --- these are folks who, in all likelihood, do not peruse the income statement of the company. They don't get the quarterly reports that go to stockholders. They don't comb through the WSJ every day. They are not well appraised of Facsum's true financial situation. Management is telling them it doesn't have a single dime to help them, and all they know is --- we're working hard, money is coming in, and those fat cats are still getting their big salaries and bonuses --- they must have money! When they hear management's completely honest statement that there's no money, they don't know whether it's truly honest or they are being stonewalled. They may even have some inkling that it's honest, but they're hopping mad and don't like their situation one bit. Even in that case, they may well strike. Again, it's not necessary about whether, from the view of a rational objective observer, the strike is likely to achieve what they want to achieve: sometimes, it's just a way to express frustration --- the workers (like the crazy Greeks) might think they are going to get somewhere by striking, but we who can see the larger picture know that the strike will be fruitless. ---- The bigger issue is: from the view the workers get at the negotiating table, Cases B & C & D may all look more or less the same --- plain and simple, in all three cases management will not give them anything of what they want --- so they will respond equally in all three cases.

So my argument is: in Case A, the workers most likely would not strike, but in Cases B-D, there would be a strike. That's largely because --- in Case A, the workers get some or all of their demands met, but in Cases B - D, the common denominator is: they get none of their demands met.

One of two assumptions would lead to those strike-causing cases:
(B) Facsum is unwilling to negotiate with the workers.
(E) Facsum likely does not have sufficient cash flow or cash reserves to support increased expenses.

(B) is a good answer, but (E) is a better answer. (E) is better because it has textual support.

Nothing, absolutely nothing, in the prompt gives us any information about how willing or unwilling Facsum management is to negotiate.

By contrast, we are told explicitly: "It is well-known that Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports." Holy schnikies! Financially, this company is in deep doo-doo. We know it has a cash flow problem, and it would not be a major stretch to infer that it also lacks cash reserves --- I would bet that 95% of companies that report negative profits in 3 quarters of 4 in a single year period have little to no cash reserves either. Yes, there will be some odd exceptions to the rule, but as I pointed out before --- multiple quarterly losses is the kiss of death in the stock market. Most of a CEO's wealth is tied up in the company's stock, so if the stock takes a big hit, his personal bank account also takes a big hit. Therefore, CEOs have both professional and personal interest in covering up quarterly losses if they can. If they have cash reserves, they can just scoop a little of that, stir it into the quarterly operating budget, and voila! no more quarterly loss. In practice, if a company is reporting one quarterly loss after and other, and taking the hit after hit that such reports would entail, it means they simply have no reserves from which draw cash to offset those losses. They are showing losses because they have no way to hide it.

BTW, the Goldman example is somewhat exceptional, because Goldman is a financial institution. That might be an example of a company that would rather risk exposing themselves to revealing a quarterly loss, and take the hits in the market, rather than pulling money out of reserves, because those reserves are in the stock & bond markets where they are making money. That's Goldman's bread-and-butter ---using money to make money. If they used to the money in their reserves to cover a single quarterly loss, they would have that much less money in the market where it can make money ---- it would be short term win and long term loss. That's the unique position of a financial institution. Whatever Facsum is, it's definitely not a financial institution. We are talking blue-collar workers, probably a factory of some kind. They would follow the rule, not the exception.

Thus, (B) has absolutely no textual support, but (E) has cogent textual support. That makes (E) much better.

What do you think now, my friend?

Mike
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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  26 Jul 2012, 08:47
mikemcgarry wrote:
voodoochild wrote:
Mike - Thanks for your detailed reply. Unfortunately, I am not 100% convinced with OA. My gut feeling is still saying no no. I truly appreciate your efforts. Here are my doubts:

#1 - I agree with you that this is a necessary assumption. But the argument breaks if we negate B and E. The assumptions are unstated, and hence should link the premise with the conclusion. In this problem, why would an assumption be that the company doesn't have sufficient reserves?

Analogy - the strike becomes inevitable when the company has money and the management is not willing to give pay hikes. Hence, a good assumption could be that the company, even though reported -ve profits, has sufficient cash reservers (as per the logic explained by you - a company may report -ve profits doesn't necessarily mean 0 cash reservers. For instance, Goldman reported loss. Does it mean that the company went bankrupt? No. I agree with your analysis - very insightful and logical.

Hence, an ideal assumption, according to me, would be that the company has sufficient cash reserves! Otherwise why would the journalist ask for strike! (I guess it's the same question)

#2 - There are some other official LSAT problems where an incorrect answer choice is not directly premise booster but an indirect one. If you see any GMAT problem that has premise booster as an assumption, please let me know. I will keep an eye for it myself.

#3 - If I negate B) - the company is willing to negotiate with the workers, the argument breaks because then the strike is not inevitable.

I am really not sure. I am a bit frustrated However, I haven't given up. I have also requested MGMAT instructors to comment on this problem. However, it is sad that no one has responded to my PM.

I really would like to thank you for support, Mike. You might be spending a substantial amount of time in answering my stupid questions. God bless you.

So, let's briefly consider four hypothetical scenarios. In all these cases, we'll assume everything stated in the prompt is true --- some malcontent workers already fired, losses in 3 of 4 quarters, etc.

Case A = Facsum has cash reserves and is willing to negotiate
Case B = Facsum has cash reserves and is not willing to negotiate
Case C = Facsum has no cash reserves and is willing to negotiate
Case D = Facsum has no cash reserves and is not willing to negotiate

In Case A, there would be no reason for a strike --- the company has the money and is willing to negioate.

In Cases B & D, clearly there would be reason for strike --- the company doesn't want to negotiate, so the worker's only recourse would be to strike.

I think Case C is the case about which you have doubts. I would argue that a strike is also inevitable in Case C. Let's think about this.

In Case C, Facsum management is genuinely willing to negotiate. They come to the table and say, with complete honesty, "We have absolutely no money to give you. We can discuss any changes at all you want to make in your working conditions, as long as they don't involve one additional dime." Now, keep in mind, in Case B, management probably would come to the table and say exactly the same thing, only in Case B, it would not be honest at all --- it would be a bald-faced lie. That's how "not willing to negotiate" often plays out --- it's not that they never come to the table at all, but rather they come and stonewall. Now, the workers and their representatives --- these are folks who, in all likelihood, do not peruse the income statement of the company. They don't get the quarterly reports that go to stockholders. They don't comb through the WSJ every day. They are not well appraised of Facsum's true financial situation. Management is telling them it doesn't have a single dime to help them, and all they know is --- we're working hard, money is coming in, and those fat cats are still getting their big salaries and bonuses --- they must have money! When they hear management's completely honest statement that there's no money, they don't know whether it's truly honest or they are being stonewalled. They may even have some inkling that it's honest, but they're hopping mad and don't like their situation one bit. Even in that case, they may well strike. Again, it's not necessary about whether, from the view of a rational objective observer, the strike is likely to achieve what they want to achieve: sometimes, it's just a way to express frustration --- the workers (like the crazy Greeks) might think they are going to get somewhere by striking, but we who can see the larger picture know that the strike will be fruitless. ---- The bigger issue is: from the view the workers get at the negotiating table, Cases B & C & D may all look more or less the same --- plain and simple, in all three cases management will not give them anything of what they want --- so they will respond equally in all three cases.

So my argument is: in Case A, the workers most likely would not strike, but in Cases B-D, there would be a strike. That's largely because --- in Case A, the workers get some or all of their demands met, but in Cases B - D, the common denominator is: they get none of their demands met.

One of two assumptions would lead to those strike-causing cases:
(B) Facsum is unwilling to negotiate with the workers.
(E) Facsum likely does not have sufficient cash flow or cash reserves to support increased expenses.

(B) is a good answer, but (E) is a better answer. (E) is better because it has textual support.

Nothing, absolutely nothing, in the prompt gives us any information about how willing or unwilling Facsum management is to negotiate.

By contrast, we are told explicitly: "It is well-known that Facsum reported that negative profits in 3 of its previous 4 quarterly earnings reports." Holy schnikies! Financially, this company is in deep doo-doo. We know it has a cash flow problem, and it would not be a major stretch to infer that it also lacks cash reserves --- I would bet that 95% of companies that report negative profits in 3 quarters of 4 in a single year period have little to no cash reserves either. Yes, there will be some odd exceptions to the rule, but as I pointed out before --- multiple quarterly losses is the kiss of death in the stock market. Most of a CEO's wealth is tied up in the company's stock, so if the stock takes a big hit, his personal bank account also takes a big hit. Therefore, CEOs have both professional and personal interest in covering up quarterly losses if they can. If they have cash reserves, they can just scoop a little of that, stir it into the quarterly operating budget, and voila! no more quarterly loss. In practice, if a company is reporting one quarterly loss after and other, and taking the hit after hit that such reports would entail, it means they simply have no reserves from which draw cash to offset those losses. They are showing losses because they have no way to hide it.

BTW, the Goldman example is somewhat exceptional, because Goldman is a financial institution. That might be an example of a company that would rather risk exposing themselves to revealing a quarterly loss, and take the hits in the market, rather than pulling money out of reserves, because those reserves are in the stock & bond markets where they are making money. That's Goldman's bread-and-butter ---using money to make money. If they used to the money in their reserves to cover a single quarterly loss, they would have that much less money in the market where it can make money ---- it would be short term win and long term loss. That's the unique position of a financial institution. Whatever Facsum is, it's definitely not a financial institution. We are talking blue-collar workers, probably a factory of some kind. They would follow the rule, not the exception.

Thus, (B) has absolutely no textual support, but (E) has cogent textual support. That makes (E) much better.

What do you think now, my friend?

Mike

Thanks Mike for your detailed response. I liked your analysis. However, in justifying E), we are assuming that the workers are not aware of the financial status of the company -- something hard to believe because the company, normally, shares its financial results with the employees. On the other hand, assuming that the company is not willing to negotiate is a valid real word thought. Correct? I may be wrong. I have worked for a few employers in college and after college, and all of them always shared financial results with their employees.

About discarding B) because a lack of support: The Powerscore LSAT/GMAT book clearly says that necessary assumption don't require a textual support. Example ?

Evidence : It rained this morning.
Evidence : I always take a train to the office.
Conclusion : I arrived late to office.

A necessary assumption would be that the train was not attacked by aliens (or....only rains caused the delay....the delay was not caused by aliens)! A sufficient assumption would be that the rains caused traffic congestion, leading to train delays.

A necessary assumption, as you said, when negated kills the argument. A sufficient assumption, when negated, has no effect. The CR question above is asking for a necessary assumption.

Another example:

Evidence - There have been layoffs this summer in the US
Conclusion - People are spending less on food.

N Assumption - Banks have reported that total savings in the banks has considerably gone up.
Suf. Assumption - Reduced prospects of employment have forced people to cut down on food costs by consuming cheaper alternatives such as the veggies.

As we can see above, N Assumption don't have to necessarily stated. Hence, they are called "necessary." Correct?

I am a learner. I could be wrong. Please correct me, if I am on the wrong track.

Thoughts?
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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  26 Jul 2012, 12:48
1
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Expert's post
voodoochild wrote:
Thanks Mike for your detailed response. I liked your analysis. However, in justifying E), we are assuming that the workers are not aware of the financial status of the company -- something hard to believe because the company, normally, shares its financial results with the employees. On the other hand, assuming that the company is not willing to negotiate is a valid real word thought. Correct? I may be wrong. I have worked for a few employers in college and after college, and all of them always shared financial results with their employees.

Well, a company often shares its financial results with intelligent and educated employees. I'm going to guess that all the jobs you had were of a more white-collar professional kind, rather than, say, a factory laborer. Many factory workers have reading levels well below high school level, some at grammar school level, and some are just illiterate. It's easy for highly educated folks to forget this. Educated & highly literate people often have a panoply of employment options, but illiterate folks can avail themselves of very few employment options, so those are the jobs where you will find them. The management (most of whom are educated and literate and typically of a different socioeconomic class from the workers) often look down on the workers ---- often there are palpable social stigmas separating them. This is all profoundly different from a white collar working environment. So, the management may share little or no financial information with workers whom they think will not understand. Or, perhaps they publish a report, and only a few workers can actually read & understand it fully. It's also true --- companies are quite happy to broadcast their financial results when business is booming, but when the company is in the red, they are not quite as eager to discuss that situation: the intelligent professional workers of a white-collar environment usually will ask probing question and management will be forced to discuss the details, but the poor financial situation would add yet another barrier of communication between management and factory workers.

So, your experience notwithstanding, maybe the factory workers are somewhat in the dark about Facsum's financial situation. Or, again, maybe they understand completely, but they are frustrated, and they strike anyway, just as an expression of frustration --- they are dissatisfied, and they don't know what to do to improve their situation, but striking is one thing they can control. Yes, again, we who can see the gestalt will look at that and say: hmm, a strike is not actually going to accomplish anything positive. But this cool-headed perspective is not necessarily anything that would prevent angry workers from striking.

If we go back to the original prompt, we read: "Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike if management does not meet their demands for an immediate 5% pay raise and a paid lunch break." Do those sound like workers well-appraised of Facsum's bleak financial situation? They are asking for a lot more money --- a 5% pay raise for all workers is a gigantic sum. Either, the workers are completely clueless about the financial problems, or they are totally unrealistic. Clueless and/or unrealistic people tend to take dramatic steps that are not optimal in terms of improving their objective situation --- for example, going on strike in this situation. Also, notice, if Facsum management, perfectly willing to negotiate, comes to the table and says, in all honesty, "we can't meet any of your demands because we have no money," a position like that will not be well-received by frustrated folks who are clueless and/or unrealistic. Do you see what I mean?

voodoochild wrote:
About discarding B) because a lack of support: The Powerscore LSAT/GMAT book clearly says that necessary assumption don't require a textual support.

Let's be clear --- I am not "discarding" (B). If (E) didn't exist, (B) would be the clear answer to the question. Necessary assumptions don't require textual support, but an assumption with textual support is a stronger choice than an assumption without textual support. That's the comparison here. (B) is not at all bad, but (E) is better. GMAT CR, like all other GMAT Verbal questions, is about choosing the best answer. Don't forget that. Don't get stuck on "But (B) is a good answer too." Yes, it absolutely is, but (E) is better.

Mike
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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  27 Jul 2012, 05:57
mikemcgarry wrote:
voodoochild wrote:
Thanks Mike for your detailed response. I liked your analysis. However, in justifying E), we are assuming that the workers are not aware of the financial status of the company -- something hard to believe because the company, normally, shares its financial results with the employees. On the other hand, assuming that the company is not willing to negotiate is a valid real word thought. Correct? I may be wrong. I have worked for a few employers in college and after college, and all of them always shared financial results with their employees.

Well, a company often shares its financial results with intelligent and educated employees. I'm going to guess that all the jobs you had were of a more white-collar professional kind, rather than, say, a factory laborer. Many factory workers have reading levels well below high school level, some at grammar school level, and some are just illiterate. It's easy for highly educated folks to forget this. Educated & highly literate people often have a panoply of employment options, but illiterate folks can avail themselves of very few employment options, so those are the jobs where you will find them. The management (most of whom are educated and literate and typically of a different socioeconomic class from the workers) often look down on the workers ---- often there are palpable social stigmas separating them. This is all profoundly different from a white collar working environment. So, the management may share little or no financial information with workers whom they think will not understand. Or, perhaps they publish a report, and only a few workers can actually read & understand it fully. It's also true --- companies are quite happy to broadcast their financial results when business is booming, but when the company is in the red, they are not quite as eager to discuss that situation: the intelligent professional workers of a white-collar environment usually will ask probing question and management will be forced to discuss the details, but the poor financial situation would add yet another barrier of communication between management and factory workers.

So, your experience notwithstanding, maybe the factory workers are somewhat in the dark about Facsum's financial situation. Or, again, maybe they understand completely, but they are frustrated, and they strike anyway, just as an expression of frustration --- they are dissatisfied, and they don't know what to do to improve their situation, but striking is one thing they can control. Yes, again, we who can see the gestalt will look at that and say: hmm, a strike is not actually going to accomplish anything positive. But this cool-headed perspective is not necessarily anything that would prevent angry workers from striking.

If we go back to the original prompt, we read: "Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike if management does not meet their demands for an immediate 5% pay raise and a paid lunch break." Do those sound like workers well-appraised of Facsum's bleak financial situation? They are asking for a lot more money --- a 5% pay raise for all workers is a gigantic sum. Either, the workers are completely clueless about the financial problems, or they are totally unrealistic. Clueless and/or unrealistic people tend to take dramatic steps that are not optimal in terms of improving their objective situation --- for example, going on strike in this situation. Also, notice, if Facsum management, perfectly willing to negotiate, comes to the table and says, in all honesty, "we can't meet any of your demands because we have no money," a position like that will not be well-received by frustrated folks who are clueless and/or unrealistic. Do you see what I mean?

voodoochild wrote:
About discarding B) because a lack of support: The Powerscore LSAT/GMAT book clearly says that necessary assumption don't require a textual support.

Let's be clear --- I am not "discarding" (B). If (E) didn't exist, (B) would be the clear answer to the question. Necessary assumptions don't require textual support, but an assumption with textual support is a stronger choice than an assumption without textual support. That's the comparison here. (B) is not at all bad, but (E) is better. GMAT CR, like all other GMAT Verbal questions, is about choosing the best answer. Don't forget that. Don't get stuck on "But (B) is a good answer too." Yes, it absolutely is, but (E) is better.

Mike

Thanks Mike. I liked your point about factory workers. I assumed that facsum was one of the financial/auto giants! I am sorry. I didn't even consider thinking about blue-collar jobs...

I also see your point about E) being "better" than B). However, I am not sure whether the GMAT will have such "better" assumption questions. If you know any Official CR that has "better" answers, please let me know. I read in Powerscore book that even though the questions say "which of the following MOST weakens...etc", there will ALWAYS be only one weakener. I believe that similar logic holds good for Assumption questions.

Thoughts?

[NB : Now, I see why Ron Purewal, an instructor from MGMAT, recommends that anything that's not an official question is garbage. He highly recommends that we must always practice from the official sources. ]
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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike [#permalink]  27 Jul 2012, 10:44
Expert's post
voodoochild wrote:
I also see your point about E) being "better" than B). However, I am not sure whether the GMAT will have such "better" assumption questions. If you know any Official CR that has "better" answers, please let me know. I read in Powerscore book that even though the questions say "which of the following MOST weakens...etc", there will ALWAYS be only one weakener. I believe that similar logic holds good for Assumption questions. Thoughts?

[NB : Now, I see why Ron Purewal, an instructor from MGMAT, recommends that anything that's not an official question is garbage. He highly recommends that we must always practice from the official sources. ]

I know this is a MGMAT question, and their material is usually excellent, but it's true --- one pretty good answer, but another better answer tops it --- that's a pattern I don't believe I have ever seen on OG CR questions. Usually MGMAT is an excellent representative of what's on the test, but in this particular instance, this particular aspect of this question might not be so representative. Throughout the Verbal section, GMAC seems quite committed to the pattern of one clear correct answer and four other choices, each of which has a clearly discernible flaw.

GMAC does maintain incredibly standards, and few prep sources consistently match those standards. MGMAT is certainly one of the finest, and I would argue that Magoosh is as well.

Mike
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Re: Journalist: Workers at Facsum Inc. have threatened to strike   [#permalink] 27 Jul 2012, 10:44
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