The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987. If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.
The argument in the passage depends on which of the following assumptions?
1) The supply of illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987.
2)The price paid for most illegal drugs by the average consumer did not drop substantially in 1987.
3)Domestic production of illegal drugs increased at a higher rate than did the entry of such drugs into the country.
4)The wholesale price of a few illegal drugs increased substantially in 1987.
5)A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was not the sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.
Guys try this one. OA later . Thanks for discussion in advance
Let me just try -
1) The program to control the entry of illegal drugs into the country was a failure in 1987 - The program was a failure
2) If the program had been successful, the wholesale price of most illegal drugs would not have dropped substantially in 1987.
Thus, it means that the program was not successful ( there was illegal entry of drugs into the country) and hence, the prices dropped.
If I negate E - A drop in demand for most illegal drugs in 1987 was THE
sole cause of the drop in their wholesale price.
okay - so if the price decrease was due to the drop in demand; the illegal entry of drugs was not the reason of their wholesale price decrease.
Am I right ?
Yes, you are right. If you use the assumption negation technique (ANT), you see that if the negative of option (E) is true, the conclusion cannot be true. Hence option (E) must be an assumption.
But let me add here that you should use ANT only when you get stuck or if you have doubts about the answer you have chosen. It is a little too complicated and time consuming to be used often.
The argument looks like this:
Premise: the wholesale price of most illegal drugs dropped substantially in 1987
Conclusion: the program was a failure i.e. the supply of illegal drugs did not drop.
Now, the argument looks shady, doesn't it? The price drop could happen because of increased supply or reduced demand. The author is concluding that the price drop is due to increase in supply (and says nothing about demand).
What is his assumption? His assumption is that the demand did not reduce or if it did, it did not reduce to the extent required to bring the price substantially down. So he is assuming that a reduction in demand was not the cause or at least was not the sole cause of reduction in the price.
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