GMAT Question of the Day - Daily to your Mailbox; hard ones only

It is currently 23 Oct 2018, 04:46

Close

GMAT Club Daily Prep

Thank you for using the timer - this advanced tool can estimate your performance and suggest more practice questions. We have subscribed you to Daily Prep Questions via email.

Customized
for You

we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

Track
Your Progress

every week, we’ll send you an estimated GMAT score based on your performance

Practice
Pays

we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

Not interested in getting valuable practice questions and articles delivered to your email? No problem, unsubscribe here.

Close

Request Expert Reply

Confirm Cancel

Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any

  new topic post reply Question banks Downloads My Bookmarks Reviews Important topics  
Author Message
TAGS:

Hide Tags

Manager
Manager
avatar
Joined: 28 Jan 2005
Posts: 63
Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any  [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post Updated on: 10 Oct 2018, 03:51
6
42
00:00
A
B
C
D
E

Difficulty:

  85% (hard)

Question Stats:

55% (01:43) correct 45% (02:02) wrong based on 1527 sessions

HideShow timer Statistics

Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any user) would always be used less carefully than private grazing land. Each rancher would be tempted to overuse common land because the benefits would accrue to the individuals, while the costs of reduced land quality that results from overuse would be spread among all users. But a study comparing 217 million acres of common grazing land with 433 million acres of private grazing land showed that the common land was in better condition.

Which of the following, if true and known by the ranchers, would best help explain the results of the study?


(A) With private grazing land, both the costs and the benefits of overuse fall to the individual user.

(B) The cost in reduced land quality that is attributable to any individual user is less easily measured with common land than it is with private land.

(C) An individual who overuses common grazing land might be able to achieve higher returns than other users can, with the result that he or she would obtain a competitive advantage.

(D) If one user of common land overuses it even slightly, the other users are likely to do so even more, with the consequence that the costs to each user outweigh the benefits.

(E) There are more acres of grazing land held privately than there are held in common.


Verbal Question of The Day: Day 234: Critical Reasoning


Subscribe to GMAT Question of the Day: E-mail | RSS
For All QOTD Questions Click Here

Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review, 2nd Edition

Practice Question
Question No.: 66
Page: 143
Difficulty:


"Hardin" Evaluate Argument Question

_________________

Best regards,


Originally posted by Taku on 07 Mar 2005, 17:19.
Last edited by Bunuel on 10 Oct 2018, 03:51, edited 8 times in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
Most Helpful Expert Reply
GMAT Club Verbal Expert
User avatar
P
Status: GMAT and GRE tutor
Joined: 13 Aug 2009
Posts: 2039
Location: United States
GMAT 1: 780 Q51 V46
GMAT 2: 800 Q51 V51
GRE 1: Q170 V170
Re: Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any  [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post 03 Mar 2018, 18:44
4
2
Let's start by identifying the discrepancy between Hardin's argument and the results of the study:

  • According to Hardin, grazing land held in common would always be used less carefully than private grazing land.
  • However, according to the study, the common land was in better condition than the private land.

Now let's look at the details of the passage:

  • Common grazing land is open to any user.
  • According to Hardin, each individual rancher would be tempted to overuse common land. Why? Because each individual rancher would benefit from overusing the common land. Meanwhile, the costs of reduced land quality from overuse would be spread among all users.
  • In other words, if a rancher overuses his/her own private land, he/she will bear the costs of the overuse. But if a rancher overuses common grazing land, the costs will be spread among ALL users. Thus, it seems as though ranchers using common land have more incentive to overuse the land and negatively impact the land quality.
  • But the results of a study, which compared 217 million acres of common grazing land with 433 million acres of private grazing land, showed that the common land was actually in better condition. This goes against Hardin's argument. We need an answer choice that explains this discrepancy.

Which of the following, if true and known by the ranchers, would best help explain the results of the study?

Quote:
(A) With private grazing land, both the costs and the benefits of overuse fall to the individual user.

This helps explain Hardin's point of view, but it does not explain why the results of the study do not match Hardin's argument. Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) The cost in reduced land quality that is attributable to any individual user is less easily measured with common land than it is with private land.

Choice (B) tells us that it if, say, 20 ranchers are sharing some common land, then it is difficult to measure the cost in reduced land quality caused by any one user.

On the other hand, with private land, any cost in reduced land quality could be attributed to the rancher who owns the land. Determining the exact cost might be difficult, but we would not have to worry about dividing up the blame.

This information helps to explain Hardin's position. If (B) were NOT true, it might be easier to point a finger at any one rancher and say, "Hey, your overuse of the common land has cost us all X dollars!" That would make it harder for the ranchers to take advantage of the shared land.

But (B) does not explain the results of the study, so it should be eliminated.

Quote:
(C) An individual who overuses common grazing land might be able to achieve higher returns than other users can, with the result that he or she would obtain a competitive advantage.

Again, this helps to explain Hardin's position. Choice (C) gives us even more reason to expect that ranchers would try to overuse common land and that the private land would be in better condition. (C) does not explain the results of the study, so it should be eliminated.

Quote:
(D) If one user of common land overuses it even slightly, the other users are likely to do so even more, with the consequence that the costs to each user outweigh the benefits.

According to Hardin, an individual rancher would have an incentive to overuse public grazing lands. Why? Because the rancher would accrue benefits from overusing the land, and the costs of the overuse would be spread among all users.

But according to choice (D), if an individual rancher tries to exploit the common land as described by Hardin, then the other users are likely to overuse the land to an even greater extent. As more and more users start to overuse the common land, the costs of overuse start to outweigh the benefits, even though those costs are spread among all users.

In other words, if only ONE rancher tries to exploit the system, then that rancher will benefit at the expense of the other users. But, if (D) is true and KNOWN by the ranchers, then all of the ranchers are aware that any such attempt will end up costing them in the long run. Thus, despite the temptation described by Hardin, the ranchers would not want to overuse the common land.

(D) explains the discrepancy, so keep this one.

Quote:
(E) There are more acres of grazing land held privately than there are held in common.

We are not concerned with the number of acres of common and private land. We are only concerned with the condition of each type. Choice (E) is irrelevant, so eliminate this one.

(D) is the best answer.
_________________

GMAT Club Verbal Expert | GMAT/GRE tutor @ www.gmatninja.com (Now hiring!) | Instagram | Food blog | Notoriously bad at PMs

Beginners' guides to GMAT verbal
Reading Comprehension | Critical Reasoning | Sentence Correction

YouTube LIVE verbal webinars
Series 1: Fundamentals of SC & CR | Series 2: Developing a Winning GMAT Mindset

SC & CR Questions of the Day (QOTDs), featuring expert explanations
All QOTDs | Subscribe via email | RSS

Need an expert reply?
Hit the request verbal experts' reply button -- and please be specific about your question. Feel free to tag @GMATNinja in your post. Priority is always given to official GMAT questions.

Sentence Correction articles & resources
How to go from great (760) to incredible (780) on GMAT SC | That "-ing" Word Probably Isn't a Verb | That "-ed" Word Might Not Be a Verb, Either | No-BS Guide to GMAT Idioms | "Being" is not the enemy | WTF is "that" doing in my sentence?

Reading Comprehension, Critical Reasoning, and other articles & resources
All GMAT Ninja articles on GMAT Club | Using LSAT for GMAT CR & RC |7 reasons why your actual GMAT scores don't match your practice test scores | How to get 4 additional "fake" GMAT Prep tests for $29.99 | Time management on verbal

Most Helpful Community Reply
GMAT Club Legend
GMAT Club Legend
User avatar
Joined: 07 Jul 2004
Posts: 4868
Location: Singapore
Re: Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any  [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post 07 Mar 2005, 17:58
5
5
Conclusion: Common grazing land is in better condition than private grazing land even though common grazing land tend to be overused.

Which of the following, if true and known by the ranchers, would best help explain the results of the study?

(A): With private grazing land, both the costs and the benefits of overuse fall to the individual user.
- does not explain why common grazing land is in a better shape, or why private grazing land is in a poorer condition

(B): The cost in reduced land quality that is attributable to any individual user is less easily measured with common land than it is with private land.
- Again provides us with no useful information why common land is in a better shape

(C): An individual who overuses common grazing land might be able to achieve higher returns than other uses can, with the result that he or she would obtain a competitive advantage.
- out of scope.

(D): If one user of common land overuses it even slightly, the other users are likely to do so even more, with the consequence that the costs to each user outweigh the benefits.
- If this was true, common land would be less appealing to ranchers and they would rather use private grazing land than common grazing land. The consequence would be a lower quality private grazing land.

(E): There are more acres of grazing hand held privately than there are held in common.
- not important. All it tells us is there are more private grazing land than common grazing land.

(D) it is.
General Discussion
Director
Director
avatar
Joined: 23 Jun 2005
Posts: 795
GMAT 1: 740 Q48 V42
Re: Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any  [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post 12 Oct 2006, 17:01
6
Must be D.

Rancher thinking: "Hey, Why shouldn't I let all my cattle graze on the commonland. Oh, wait a minute, if I do that, my neighbors will start doing the same and pretty soon the common land will be bare and I will have to graze all my cattle on my own land. hmmm... maybe that's not such a good idea!"

:wink: :lol:
Non-Human User
User avatar
Joined: 01 Oct 2013
Posts: 3230
Premium Member
Re: Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any  [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post 24 Aug 2016, 07:23
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

Want to see all other topics I dig out? Follow me (click follow button on profile). You will receive a summary of all topics I bump in your profile area as well as via email.
_________________

-
April 2018: New Forum dedicated to Verbal Strategies, Guides, and Resources

GMAT Club Bot
Re: Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any &nbs [#permalink] 24 Aug 2016, 07:23
Display posts from previous: Sort by

Hardin argued that grazing land held in common (that is, open to any

  new topic post reply Question banks Downloads My Bookmarks Reviews Important topics  


Copyright

GMAT Club MBA Forum Home| About| Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy| GMAT Club Rules| Contact| Sitemap

Powered by phpBB © phpBB Group | Emoji artwork provided by EmojiOne

Kindly note that the GMAT® test is a registered trademark of the Graduate Management Admission Council®, and this site has neither been reviewed nor endorsed by GMAC®.