A digression, if i may...
This question is not quite the type you would ever see on the GMAT. And if you do see a really really tough and apparently convoluted question, you must be doing really really well in verbal. In other words, relax
My first request is that for verbal prep, especially CR and RC, please please and please do not refer to any other sources for questions other than the Official Guide and the LSAT for your learning. In LSAT, avoid the logic based CR's.
Now let me make sure we understand.... I dont mind trying different strategies to see what works best. thats the very purpose of this forum, to learn from the best. Many test prep companies have tried very hard to design strategies and i love most of them. Go ahead, learn the strategies. But make sure you apply those strategies on the right questions.
Its incredibly difficult to develop ETS style verbal questions. Please be very careful with what questions you are working with.
hope this helps.