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In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri

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In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 06 Aug 2018, 05:36
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The Official Guide for GMAT Review 13th Edition, 2012

Practice Question
Question No.: RC 56 ~ 62
Page: 390

In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the right to use waters flowing through or adjacent to the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation was reserved to American Indians by the treaty establishing the reservation. Although this treaty did not mention water rights, the Court ruled that the federal government, when it created the reservation, intended to deal fairly with American Indians by preserving for them the waters without which their lands would have been useless. Later decisions, citing Winters, established that courts can find federal rights to reserve water for particular purposes if (1) the land in question lies within an enclave under exclusive federal jurisdiction, (2) the land has been formally withdrawn from federal public lands — i.e., withdrawn from the stock of federal lands available for private use under federal land use laws — and set aside or reserved, and (3) the circumstances reveal the government intended to reserve water as well as land when establishing the reservation.

Some American Indian tribes have also established water rights through the courts based on their traditional diversion and use of certain waters prior to the United States’ acquisition of sovereignty. For example, the Rio Grande pueblos already existed when the United States acquired sovereignty over New Mexico in 1848. Although they at that time became part of the United States, the pueblo lands never formally constituted a part of federal public lands; in any event, no treaty, statute, or executive order has ever designated or withdrawn the pueblos from public lands as American Indian reservations. This fact, however, has not barred application of the Winters doctrine. What constitutes an American Indian reservation is a question of practice, not of legal definition, and the pueblos have always been treated as reservations by the United States. This pragmatic approach is buttressed by Arizona v. California (1963), wherein the Supreme Court indicated that the manner in which any type of federal reservation is created does not affect the application to it of the Winters doctrine. Therefore, the reserved water rights of Pueblo Indians have priority over other citizens’ water rights as of 1848, the year in which pueblos must be considered to have become reservations.

Passage: Water Rights

Question: Inference–Rio Grande

The Simple Story

The passage discusses laws that determine who holds the water rights on American Indian reservations. The Winters v. United States case determined that American Indians held the water rights on a particular reservation, even though water rights were not included in the treaty that originally established the reservation. This case established the guidelines for determining whether a group owns the water rights to federal land. However, other American Indian tribes have claimed water rights as well, even if their cases did not fit the guidelines exactly.

Sample Passage Map

Here is one way to map this passage. (Note: abbreviate as desired!)

P1:

W v US decision: AI keep water rights on reservation

3 rules for water rights established

P2:

some tribes have water rights for other reasons

ex. RG pueblos don’t technically fit W v US rules

Ariz vs Cali says W v US rules apply to RG pueblos anyways

Step 1: Identify the Question

The question asks why the author made a particular choice when writing a certain, small section of the passage. Therefore, this is an Inference question.

Step 2: Find the Support

The Rio Grande pueblos are described in the second paragraph. Skim this paragraph and reread the part of it that deals with the formal status of the pueblos.

“Although they at that time became part of the United States, the pueblo lands never formally constituted a part of federal public lands…this fact, however, has not barred application of the Winters doctrine.”

Also, check your passage map to remind yourself of the purpose of the Rio Grande example.

Step 3: Predict an Answer

The Rio Grande pueblos are discussed in the second paragraph. This paragraph discusses ways in which certain tribes established water rights even if the Winters doctrine did not directly apply. The Rio Grande pueblos are one example of this. Note that the Winters criteria, described in the first paragraph, only mentions federal lands. By mentioning the fact that the Rio Grande pueblos were not defined as federal land, the author explains why the Winters criteria did not directly apply to them.

Step 4: Eliminate and Find a Match

(A) CORRECT. By citing this fact, the author establishes that the three criteria of the Winters doctrine—which are listed in the previous paragraph—did not directly apply to the Rio Grande pueblos. By establishing this, the author can use the Rio Grande pueblos as an example of a situation in which applying the Winters criteria was a complex issue.

(B) The passage states that the Rio Grande pueblos already existed when the United States acquired sovereignty over New Mexico in 1848...they at that time became part of the United States. This does imply that the United States never formally made the Rio Grande pueblos into federal land. However, the passage does not attempt to define sovereignty or argue about whether the United States actually acquired it.

(C) It's true that the Winters doctrine applies to federal lands, but the argument is about whether it should also apply to the Rio Grande pueblos, regardless of their formal status as federal lands. The author also does not make this argument herself, but simply describes it.

(D) The author treats the issues in this passage neutrally, describing them rather than supporting any particular side. Also, the effect of Winters on citizens other than American Indians is not mentioned in the passage, which deals specifically with water rights on American Indian reservations.

(E) The passage does mention that the Supreme Court had jurisdiction over the water-rights cases. However, the author only discusses the outcomes of the cases and their applications, not whether it was appropriate for the Supreme Court to handle them.

1. The author cites the fact that the Rio Grande pueblos were never formally withdrawn from public lands primarily in order to do which of the following?

(A) Suggest why it might have been argued that the Winters doctrine ought not to apply to pueblo lands
(B) Imply that the United States never really acquired sovereignty over pueblo lands
(C) Argue that the pueblo lands ought still to be considered part of federal public lands
(D) Support the argument that the water rights of citizens other than American Indians are limited by the Winters doctrine
(E) Suggest that federal courts cannot claim jurisdiction over cases disputing the traditional diversion and use of water by Pueblo Indians



2. The passage suggests that, if the criteria discussed in lines 10–20 [Later decisions, citing Winters, established that courts can find federal rights to reserve water for particular purposes if (1) the land in question lies within an enclave under exclusive federal jurisdiction, (2) the land has been formally withdrawn from federal public lands—i.e., withdrawn from the stock of federal lands available for private use under federal land use laws—and set aside or reserved, and (3) the circumstances reveal the government intended to reserve water as well as land when establishing the reservation.] were the only criteria for establishing a reservation’s water rights, which of the following would be true?

(A) The water rights of the inhabitants of the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation would not take precedence over those of other citizens.
(B) Reservations established before 1848 would be judged to have no water rights.
(C) There would be no legal basis for the water rights of the Rio Grande pueblos.
(D) Reservations other than American Indian reservations could not be created with reserved water rights.
(E) Treaties establishing reservations would have to mention water rights explicitly in order to reserve water for a particular purpose.



3. According to the passage, which of the following was true of the treaty establishing the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation?

(A) It was challenged in the Supreme Court a number of times.
(B) It was rescinded by the federal government, an action that gave rise to the Winters case.
(C) It cited American Indians’ traditional use of the land’s resources.
(D) It failed to mention water rights to be enjoyed by the reservation’s inhabitants.
(E) It was modified by the Supreme Court in Arizona v. California.



4. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) trace the development of laws establishing American Indian reservations
(B) explain the legal basis for the water rights of American Indian tribes
(C) question the legal criteria often used to determine the water rights of American Indian tribes
(D) discuss evidence establishing the earliest date at which the federal government recognized the water rights of American Indians
(E) point out a legal distinction between different types of American Indian reservations



5. Which of the following most accurately summarizes the relationship between Arizona v. California in lines 38–42 [This pragmatic approach is buttressed by Arizona v. California (1963), wherein the Supreme Court indicated that the manner in which any type of federal reservation is created does not affect the application to it of the Winters doctrine.], and the criteria citing the Winters doctrine in lines 10–20 [Later decisions, citing Winters, established that courts can find federal rights to reserve water for particular purposes]?

(A) Arizona v. California abolishes these criteria and establishes a competing set of criteria for applying the Winters doctrine.
(B) Arizona v. California establishes that the Winters doctrine applies to a broader range of situations than those defined by these criteria.
(C) Arizona v. California represents the sole example of an exception to the criteria as they were set forth in the Winters doctrine.
(D) Arizona v. California does not refer to the Winters doctrine to justify water rights, whereas these criteria do rely on the Winters doctrine.
(E) Arizona v. California applies the criteria derived from the Winters doctrine only to federal lands other than American Indian reservations.


Passage: Water Rights

Question: Specific Detail–Pragmatic Approach

The Simple Story

The passage discusses laws that determine who holds the water rights on American Indian reservations. The Winters v. United States case determined that American Indians held the water rights on a particular reservation, even though water rights were not included in the treaty that originally established the reservation. This case established the guidelines for determining whether a group owns the water rights to federal land. However, other American Indian tribes have claimed water rights as well, even if their cases did not fit the guidelines exactly.

Sample Passage Map

Here is one way to map this passage. (Note: abbreviate as desired!)

P1:

W v US decision: AI keep water rights on reservation

3 rules for water rights established

P2:

some tribes have water rights for other reasons

ex. RG pueblos don’t technically fit W v US rules

Ariz vs Cali says W v US rules apply to RG pueblos anyways

Step 1: Identify the Question

The question refers specifically to the meaning of a short phrase in the passage, so this is a Specific Detail question.

Step 2: Find the Support

Reread the lines of the passage in which the “pragmatic approach” is mentioned, and enough of the surrounding text to provide context.

“What constitutes an American Indian reservation is a question of practice, not of legal definition, and the pueblos have always been treated as reservations by the United States. This pragmatic approach is buttressed by Arizona v. California (1963), wherein the Supreme Court indicated that the manner in which any type of federal reservation is created does not affect the application to it of the Winters doctrine.”

Step 3: Predict an Answer

The passage mentions this pragmatic approach. This refers to the approach described in the previous sentence. Specifically, the pragmatic approach involves defining a reservation based on considerations other than its formal, legal definition.

Step 4: Eliminate and Find a Match

(A) CORRECT. The “pragmatic approach” refers to the description in the preceding sentence of what qualifies as an American Indian reservation. From a pragmatic perspective, since the pueblo lands were always treated as reservations, they were reservations for the purpose of applying the Winters doctrine.

(B) The history of water usage by all citizens in a region is not discussed in the passage. The traditional diversion and use of certain waters is mentioned much earlier in the second paragraph, but this refers specifically to American Indians, not to all citizens.

(C) The language in this answer choice relates to the description of the Winters doctrine in the first paragraph. The first paragraph states that water rights can be reserved if the circumstances reveal that the government intended to reserve water as well, which is the opposite of what is stated in this answer choice. Although the “pragmatic approach” is different from the strict application of the Winters doctrine, it does not differ in how it deals with the government's intent to reserve water. Instead, it deals with the ways in which a reservation can be defined.

(D) The “pragmatic approach” described by the passage deals specifically with American Indian reservations, not with the legal rights of all groups. This answer choice is too general.

(E) The Rio Grande case did not involve ignoring the Winters doctrine. Rather, it involved applying it to a situation in which it might not apply under a strict interpretation.

6. The "pragmatic approach" mentioned in hightlight text of the passage is best defined as one that

(A) grants recognition to reservations that were never formally established but that have traditionally been treated as such
(B) determines the water rights of all citizens in a particular region by examining the actual history of water usage in that region
(C) gives federal courts the right to reserve water along with land even when it is clear that the government originally intended to reserve only the land
(D) bases the decision to recognize the legal rights of a group on the practical effect such a recognition is likely to have on other citizens
(E) dictates that courts ignore precedents set by such cases as Winters v. United States in deciding what water rights belong to reserved land



7. The passage suggests that the legal rights of citizens other than American Indians to the use of water flowing into the Rio Grande pueblos are

(A) guaranteed by the precedent set in Arizona v. California
(B) abolished by the Winters doctrine
(C) deferred to the Pueblo Indians whenever treaties explicitly require this
(D) guaranteed by federal land-use laws
(E) limited by the prior claims of the Pueblo Indians


Originally posted by vksunder on 14 Jul 2008, 09:00.
Last edited by hazelnut on 06 Aug 2018, 05:36, edited 8 times in total.
Formatted the Para and added missing Qs
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Re: In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Aug 2017, 15:14
6
3
adkikani wrote:
Hi Gmatninja / Gmatninja2,
Would you help applying correct reading strategy to this example?
I took 9 mins and unfortunately got all ans incorrect since could not
understand the passage itself.

As recommended in the Ultimate RC Guide for Beginners (click here for a full list of Experts’ Topics of the Week), stop at the end of each paragraph, and ask yourself WHY the author has written the paragraph.

The first paragraph is a bit daunting (the 3rd sentence is 8 lines long!). Rather than getting stuck in the details, think about why that paragraph is there. Is it simply to tell us about the Supreme Court decision in Winters v. United States (1908)? No, the larger purpose of the paragraph is to tell us that, CITING Winters v US, later decisions established that courts can find federal rights to reserve water for particular purposes if certain criteria are met. In other words, the author wants us to realize that the Winters v US case was an important precedent for later cases involving federal rights to reserve water for particular purposes.

As for the second paragraph, is the main purpose to educate readers on the reserved water rights of Pueblo Indians? Or to tell us about the Arizona v. California (1963) decision? No, these examples serve a larger purpose, which is to show that the Winters doctrine has been used to establish water rights even when the waters were not part of a legally defined reservation. In other words, as long as an area was TREATED like a reservation in practice, the courts can consider that area a reservation and thus apply the Winters doctrine to reserve water for particular purposes.

The main purpose of the passage is not to tell us about specific court decisions. Rather, taken together, the two paragraphs are meant to tell us about the legal water rights of American Indian tribes.

See if that analysis helps you tackle the questions!
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Re: In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Oct 2013, 16:38
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Guys,

I just went through this passage and made me feel horrible. By far, one of the toughest reading ever. But, this made me think about how to approach a tough reading in the exam. I could learn two lessons out of it:

(a) How to find the topic: It took me a while to figure out the main topic, as I was expecting something in the line of "clash between federal state and native americans" and so on. But I realized that GMAT is ALWAYS prone to mention it in the first two sentences of every reading. In this case one should have caught that the topic was about "...right to use water..."

(b) Once one find the main topic, keep the pace to reach the opposing views (swings): In this text, it became clear to me that there were the "legal" and the "practical" views. Confronting them is the main role of the second paragraph, and then the passage becomes easier to flow.

I understand these involve a lot of common sense, but the importance of them become evident only in a tough reading like the one above.

Please, share any of your thoughts about a particular way to approach this passage, as well.

Cheers!
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Re: In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2012, 05:18
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With a beautiful 28 on TOEFL, I always thought that I am good at RC but this test actually knocked me off!!!
It's really tough! I answered all the questions wrong!! I hope I wouldn't face it in real GMAT!
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Re: In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Dec 2013, 10:49
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Tough one. This question is testing your Critical Reasoning skills more than anything. The question asks: if X (criteria discussed in lines 16-32), then what MUST BE TRUE? Therefore, approach it as if it were a MUST BE TRUE Critical reasoning question.

What are the premises?

Everything stated in X - the criterias(!):

To guarantee water rights, the land needs to...

(1) the land in question lies within an enclave under exclusive federal jurisdiction,
(2) the land has been formally withdrawn from federal public lands — i.e., withdrawn from the stock of federal lands available for private use under federal land use laws — and set aside or reserved, and
(3) the circumstances reveal the government intended to reserve water as well as land when establishing the reservation.

Now, take a look a at what answer C says (the conclusion):

C. There would be no legal basis for the water rights of the Rio Grande pueblos. - Wait a minute! The second paragraph says that the Rio Grande Pueblo "never formally constituted a part of federal public land". Now look at what premise (1) states. Therefore, Rio Grande Pueblos would never be awarted water rights, as they were not part of a federal jurisdiction.

I hope it helps,



madman91 wrote:
9 minutes 14 seconds.

A
E
D
B

Can anyone explain why #2 is C?
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Re: In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jun 2014, 13:54
gmat072014 wrote:
Here is a passage

In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme
Court held that the right to use waters flowing through
or adjacent to the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation
was reserved to American Indians by the treaty
(5) establishing the reservation. Although this treaty did
not mention water rights, the Court ruled that the
federal government, when it created the reservation,
intended to deal fairly with American Indians by
reserving for them the waters without which their
(10) lands would have been useless. Later decisions, citing
Winters, established that courts can find federal rights
to reserve water for particular purposes if (1) the land
in question lies within an enclave under exclusive
federal jurisdiction, (2) the land has been formally
(15) withdrawn from federal public lands-i.e., withdrawn
from the stock of federal lands available for private
use under federal land use laws-and set aside or
reserved, and (3) the circumstances reveal the
government intended to reserve water as well as land
(20) when establishing the reservation.
Some American Indian tribes have also established
water rights through the courts based on their
traditional diversion and use of certain waters prior to
the United States' acquisition of sovereignty. For
(25) example, the Rio Grande pueblos already existed when
the United States acquired sovereignty over New
Mexico in 1848. Although they at that time became
part of the United States, the pueblo lands never
formally constituted a part of federal public lands; in
(30) any event, no treaty, statute, or executive order has
ever designated or withdrawn the pueblos from public
lands as American Indian reservations. This fact,
however, has not barred application of the Winters
doctrine. What constitutes an American Indian
(35) reservation is a question of practice, not of legal
definition, and the pueblos have always been treated
as reservations by the United States. This pragmatic
approach is buttressed by Arizona v. California (1963),
wherein the Supreme Court indicated that the manner
(40) in which any type of federal reservation is created
does not affect the application to it of the Winters
doctrine. Therefore, the reserved water rights of
Pueblo Indians have priority over other citizens' water
rights as of 1848, the year in which pueblos must be
(45) considered to have become reservations

This totally stumped me...i want to know from other members here if they feel the same and they feel that this passage indeed is a tough one to comprehend.(BTW i happened to google this topic - you will get a wiki result,surprisingly the text in that wiki article is far lucid and simple to comprehend so i am wondering if GMAC recreated this passage.(I am non native English speaker but I have been in US for over 10 years now)I think even a native speaker will find it difficult to comprehend this passage as well...(for the fact that it is poorly written with no coherence and logical flow)

On another note,I happen to find this post on BeattheGMAT which is kind of discouraging...
does anyone have to comment on this?(essentially what it says is that if you cannot comprehend a passage like this then you shouldn't be going to BSchool or take GMAT.

"if your understanding of written english is insufficient for you to comprehend difficult OG passages, then you should take some at least a few months off studying for the test and improve your general comprehension of written english.
this section is called “reading comprehension” for a reason -- there are no quick tricks or statistical guessing methods that will allow you to circumvent the need for good reading comprehension. in other words, you need to get to a level at which you can read -- and understand -- the principal intention of each passage fairly quickly. this doesn't mean you have to be able to understand everything the moment it hits your eyes; it's ok, for instance, if you struggle with technical terms here and there. however, if a passage blows you away so much that you just don't understand it at all, then you may want to step back and ask yourself whether you're ready for this test -- or for business school -- right now.

remember that business school is going to involve A LOT of highly technical reading!
especially if you take any classes that have to do with business-related law -- such as classes dealing with antitrust law, classes dealing with international mergers and acquisitions, etc. -- you're going to have to do a lot of reading related to the law, and, believe me, that reading will be just as complicated and technical as these passages, if not more so. (this is actually the reason why there are so many passages about legislation and court decisions, by the way; once again, gmac is sneaking in skills that are quite directly related to what you'll need in business school, as well as in business itself.) "



This will make u feel better.. I have marked this passage in my OG as one of the tough ones to comprehend..
And ideally.. I personally feel that ppl who write such discouraging things don't deserv to be in b-school and not those who are willing to learn and progress.. So don't worry :)
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New post 12 Sep 2014, 22:49
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Got 3/4 right in 9 mins..Dint understand the passage at all..! Guessed 2 answers and got the first question right and 2nd one wrong..! the third answer was well stated in the passage..and for the last one,was able to luckily understand the gist of passage..!IMO,the author wasnt arugueing or questioning any thing..he was totally in charge of the passage,and explaining or discussing facts and his point of view about these facts..!I should say,2/4 is wat i really deserve. :?
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New post 21 Sep 2014, 05:34
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Ok, this one is 'hands down' the toughest read ever according to me.

if anyone managed to crack it in terms of getting the flow, please share.

Total KO ! :roll:
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New post 21 Sep 2014, 05:37
earnit wrote:
Ok, this one is 'hands down' the toughest read ever according to me.

if anyone managed to crack it in terms of getting the flow, please share.

Total KO ! :roll:

Absolutely right..!i was unable to infer y i dintunderstand the passage well..u spotted it right..! the flow of passage was the concern..thanks for pointing that out..! :)
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New post 23 Sep 2014, 01:25
Worked through it while I was solving RC passages from OG 2015 (q56-q62). I think I died a little inside after solving this one. 2/7 :((
Here I was thinking RC is my strongest suit among all the verbal topics.
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New post 23 Sep 2014, 01:32
ayushgupta1989@gmail.com wrote:
Worked through it while I was solving RC passages from OG 2015 (q56-q62). I think I died a little inside after solving this one. 2/7 :((
Here I was thinking RC is my strongest suit among all the verbal topics.



Haha. This was kind of funny. ayush, i certainly believe that your analysis that RC is your forte stands correct because a one off passage shouldn't really move your foundations. This passage is indeed very twisted so in all fairness, i think if you want to test yourself, go ahead with a set of 5 700+ passages and then you will be in a good position to judge yourself. Cheers!
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New post 23 Sep 2014, 01:42
earnit wrote:
ayushgupta1989@gmail.com wrote:
Worked through it while I was solving RC passages from OG 2015 (q56-q62). I think I died a little inside after solving this one. 2/7 :((
Here I was thinking RC is my strongest suit among all the verbal topics.



Haha. This was kind of funny. ayush, i certainly believe that your analysis that RC is your forte stands correct because a one off passage shouldn't really move your foundations. This passage is indeed very twisted so in all fairness, i think if you want to test yourself, go ahead with a set of 5 700+ passages and then you will be in a good position to judge yourself. Cheers!


Thanks earnit
Suggestions/links for 700+ passages?
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New post 23 Sep 2014, 01:45
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ayushgupta1989@gmail.com wrote:
earnit wrote:
ayushgupta1989@gmail.com wrote:
Worked through it while I was solving RC passages from OG 2015 (q56-q62). I think I died a little inside after solving this one. 2/7 :((
Here I was thinking RC is my strongest suit among all the verbal topics.



Haha. This was kind of funny. ayush, i certainly believe that your analysis that RC is your forte stands correct because a one off passage shouldn't really move your foundations. This passage is indeed very twisted so in all fairness, i think if you want to test yourself, go ahead with a set of 5 700+ passages and then you will be in a good position to judge yourself. Cheers!


Thanks earnit
Suggestions/links for 700+ passages?


This should do it: reading-comprehension-question-directory-topic-difficulty-129341.html
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New post 08 Oct 2014, 01:27
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This one was a bummer!!! the toughest of the lot. I pray to god i see many such RC passages on the test.
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New post 08 Oct 2014, 04:21
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WaterFlowsUp wrote:
This one was a bummer!!! the toughest of the lot. I pray to god i see many such RC passages on the test.


Hey mate, you pray to god that u want to see many such RC's !! u cant be serious :)
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New post 08 Oct 2014, 04:27
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U want to see easier rc? I have a suggestion , get 15 first verbal wrong and the rest of the test would be a breezer:D

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New post 08 Oct 2014, 05:13
WaterFlowsUp wrote:
U want to see easier rc? I have a suggestion , get 15 first verbal wrong and the rest of the test would be a breezer:D

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Well,i dont want 780 or 800..700 would suffice me..dont u think this one would be 750 level ?? u can read my earlier post..though i got almost all of them rite,i was not at all sure while selecting half of the answers..!! :)
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New post 30 Dec 2014, 11:05
ayushgupta1989@gmail.com wrote:
Worked through it while I was solving RC passages from OG 2015 (q56-q62). I think I died a little inside after solving this one. 2/7 :((
Here I was thinking RC is my strongest suit among all the verbal topics.


Same here mate. I got a very similar RC in my real GMAT but the topic was psychology,and boy I knew the moment I saw it that this will be my downfall. I got the same feeling solving this one, and got 2/7 correct as well. I can just hope not to see something similar on my next attempt.
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New post 30 Sep 2015, 22:09
Some passages just knock you off and this was one of those. Even after rereading, I could hardly get everything that was happening in the passage. If anyone can guide how to handle such passages it'd be very helpful.
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New post 08 May 2016, 14:01
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[quote="vksunder"][box_out]
In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the right to use waters flowing through or adjacent to the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation was reserved to American Indians by the treaty establishing the reservation. Although this treaty did not mention water rights, the Court ruled that the federal government, when it created the reservation, intended to deal fairly with American Indians by preserving for them the waters without which their lands would have been useless. Later decisions, citing Winters, established that courts can find federal rights to reserve water for particular purposes if (1) the land in question lies within an enclave under exclusive federal jurisdiction, (2) the land has been formally withdrawn from federal public lands — i.e., withdrawn from the stock of federal lands available for private use under federal land use laws — and set aside or reserved, and (3) the circumstances reveal the government intended to reserve water as well as land when establishing the reservation.

Some American Indian tribes have also established water rights through the courts based on their traditional diversion and use of certain waters prior to the United States’ acquisition of sovereignty. For example, the Rio Grande pueblos already existed when the United States acquired sovereignty over New Mexico in 1848. Although they at that time became part of the United States, the pueblo lands never formally constituted a part of federal public lands; in any event, no treaty, statute, or executive order has ever designated or withdrawn the pueblos from public lands as American Indian reservations. This fact, however, has not barred application of the Winters doctrine. What constitutes an American Indian reservation is a question of practice, not of legal definition, and the pueblos have always been treated as reservations by the United States. This pragmatic approach is buttressed by Arizona
v. California (1963), wherein the Supreme Court indicated that the manner in which any type of federal reservation is created does not affect the application to it of the Winters doctrine. Therefore, the reserved water rights of Pueblo Indians have priority over other citizens’ water rights as of 1848, the year in which pueblos must be considered to have become reservations.
[box_in]


Hi Egmat,

I found this passage extremely tough. Below is my understanding of the passage. Please help me if you spot any gaps in my understanding and then I can pose my doubts regarding questions:

Para 1: Talks about a specific legal case of W Vs U.S where a treaty allowed the use of water to Indians since the land rights resided with them. The logic cited was the land would be useless without the water. This case was used as the basis for further cases where if any of the following 3 conditions were met the court could decide the fed rights to reserve water:
1. The land in question lies within an enclave under exclusive federal jurisdiction,
(2) the land is no longer publicly available but under the jurisdiction of the feds
(3) the circumstances reveal the government intended to reserve water as well as land when establishing the reservation as in the W Vs U.S case

Summary: The passage cites a particular winters case and then cites how this case was used as basis for other rulings of water rights.

Para 2: An exception is cited of how water laws for a particular land were made without falling into the above 3 criterias listed by courts. This land wasn't part of the fed govt. legally and yet the winters doctrine was applicable to this. Eg of pueblos land is cited.
The author supports the application of winters doictrine by saying that despite no treaty formally this piece of land was treated as a reservation and hence the doctrine should be applicable.
He further provides supports for the above by giving an example of another case Arizona v. California (1963) which further supports the fact that it doesn't matter wether the pueblos land is considered a reservation due to treaty or due to practical usage of the land. Winters doctrine will still be applicable.

Therefore as per the winters doctrine, pueblo indians have rights for water usage since the time the treaty for land rights was conferred to them.

Summary: Exceptions were cited of not falling under fed jurisdiction and yet rules made as per the applicability of winters doctrine.

MP: How the feds decides the water rights in U.S based on winters case in 1908.
Re: In Winters v. United States (1908), the Supreme Court held that the ri &nbs [#permalink] 08 May 2016, 14:01

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