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It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in

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It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in the United States every year. An additional tax of 50 cents on every pack of cigarettes sold would achieve two desirable goals. First, the additional 5 billion dollars in revenue could be used to supplement the nation’s education budget and restore many programs that have been cut back or eliminated, such as vocational training and art education. In addition, the higher prices of buying cigarettes will encourage smokers to reduce the numbers of cigarettes that they smoke, which would help to improve the health of both the smokers and the bystanders who inhale their second-hand smoke.

Which of the following describes a flaw in the argument’s reasoning?


A) The author overlooks the possibility that education programs can be funded by means other than taxing cigarettes.

B) The author assumes that something that is sufficient to achieve one goal may be necessary to achieve another.

C) The author ignores the beneficial results already achieved through public smoking bans to reduce the effects of second-hand smoke.

D) The author fails to consider that success in achieving one of the proposal’s goals would negatively impact the success of the other.

E) The author presumes a correlation between artificially low cigarette taxes and cutbacks in education programs.


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Originally posted by souvik101990 on 26 Apr 2016, 09:15.
Last edited by Bunuel on 04 Mar 2019, 03:43, edited 1 time in total.
Renamed the topic and edited the question.
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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Apr 2016, 13:11
souvik101990 wrote:
It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in the United States every year. An additional tax of 50 cents on every pack of cigarettes sold would achieve two desirable goals. First, the additional 5 billion dollars in revenue could be used to supplement the nation’s education budget and restore many programs that have been cut back or eliminated, such as vocational training and art education. In addition, the higher prices of buying cigarettes will encourage smokers to reduce the numbers of cigarettes that they smoke, which would help to improve the health of both the smokers and the bystanders who inhale their second-hand smoke.

Which of the following describes a flaw in the argument’s reasoning?

A)The author overlooks the possibility that education programs can be funded by means other than taxing cigarettes.

B)The author assumes that something that is sufficient to achieve one goal may be necessary to achieve another.

C)The author ignores the beneficial results already achieved through public smoking bans to reduce the effects of second-hand smoke.

D)The author fails to consider that success in achieving one of the proposal’s goals would negatively impact the success of the other.

E)The author presumes a correlation between artificially low cigarette taxes and cutbacks in education programs.



No doubt its (D)

Goals of introducing additional Tax

1. Meeting education Budget & restoring stalled projects
2. Improving health as higher price of Cigarettes will encourage smokers to reduce the numbers of cigarettes that they smoke.


If people start consumes less Cigarettes then how can the Government gain additional 5 billion dollars in revenue ?


The author fails to consider that success in achieving one of the proposal’s goals ( Reducing Smoking ) would negatively impact the success of the other (Meeting education Budget & restoring stalled projects).
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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Apr 2016, 02:12
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It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in the United States every year. An additional tax of 50 cents on every pack of cigarettes sold would achieve two desirable goals.

First The additional 5 billion dollars in revenue could be used to do some good things..............
Assumption: additional tax gives additional money i.e., the sales will not get impacted negatively or reduce

Second The higher prices of buying cigarettes will encourage smokers to reduce the numbers of cigarettes that they smoke,
Assumption: the sales will get impacted negatively or reduce

Both the statements contradict with each other......only one of them can result.
In other words Occurrence of one will rule out the possibility of the other one.

only choice D expresses the reason for failure as above.

Quote:
D)The author fails to consider that success in achieving one of the proposal’s goals would negatively impact the success of the other.
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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Apr 2016, 03:26
souvik101990 wrote:
It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in the United States every year. An additional tax of 50 cents on every pack of cigarettes sold would achieve two desirable goals. First, the additional 5 billion dollars in revenue could be used to supplement the nation’s education budget and restore many programs that have been cut back or eliminated, such as vocational training and art education. In addition, the higher prices of buying cigarettes will encourage smokers to reduce the numbers of cigarettes that they smoke, which would help to improve the health of both the smokers and the bystanders who inhale their second-hand smoke.

Which of the following describes a flaw in the argument’s reasoning?

A)The author overlooks the possibility that education programs can be funded by means other than taxing cigarettes.

B)The author assumes that something that is sufficient to achieve one goal may be necessary to achieve another.

C)The author ignores the beneficial results already achieved through public smoking bans to reduce the effects of second-hand smoke.

D)The author fails to consider that success in achieving one of the proposal’s goals would negatively impact the success of the other.

E)The author presumes a correlation between artificially low cigarette taxes and cutbacks in education programs.



The argument says that by introducing new taxes, the revenue will be increased. And this will have following two effects:

1. Money obtained for other purposes
2. Reduce the number of smokers.

We need to find out a flaw in the reasoning.

The point 2 is in direct contradiction with the increasing of taxes. If people reduce the number of cigarettes they smoke, the revenues will not increase.
Of the given options, only D talks on the same lines.

Correct Option: D
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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Apr 2016, 06:22
A very good question. Took a little longer than usual to answer it though ! What should be the difficulty level of this question ? Looks like a 700+ candidate to me ?
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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Apr 2016, 08:59
Correct Answer: (D)
The question stem identifies this as a Flaw question. The correct answer will describe an error in the author’s reasoning.
The conclusion of the argument is a recommendation to charge a fifty-cent tax on each pack of cigarettes sold. The evidence presents two benefits to be gained from the tax: extra money (5 billion) for educational programs and a reduction in smoking, which benefits both the smokers and bystanders. What the author overlooks is that these benefits rest on opposing assumptions. A gain of 5 billion dollars for education rests on the assumption that people will continue smoking at the same rate and pay the tax. A reduction in smoking requires that people buy fewer packs of cigarettes to avoid paying the tax. So the two predicted benefits in support of the recommendation are contradictory; achieving one will undermine the other.

The correct answer should point out that the author is overlooking the mutually contradictory nature of the goals.

Choice (D) fits the prediction. “Fails to consider” means that the author overlooks something, and what he overlooks is that one of the goals justifying the recommendation would have a negative impact on achieving the other goal. This is the correct answer.

Choice (A) is outside the scope of the argument. The argument is not about ways to fund the educational programs, but rather about the potential benefits of a proposed cigarette tax. Even if there are many ways that the programs could be funded, the author is using this possibility as a means of justifying a cigarette tax.

Choice (B) is a distortion of the author’s logic. The two benefits are not conditioned on each other. The author presents them as two independent benefits to be gained from the imposition of the tax, although he overlooks the fact that they could affect each other. There is no necessary-sufficient relationship between them.

Choice (C) is outside the scope. Other means of reducing smoking are not relevant to the fact that this recommendation might help to reduce smoking further. The argument is about the benefits of imposing a cigarette tax, not on ways to reduce smoking.

Choice (E) distorts the argument. The author is arguing that an increased cigarette tax will help to fund programs, but he in no way relies on a claim that the programs were cut back because cigarette taxes were too low.
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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Apr 2016, 14:02
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spetznaz wrote:
A very good question. Took a little longer than usual to answer it though ! What should be the difficulty level of this question ? Looks like a 700+ candidate to me ?


This item is hot off the presses, as it were, and our learning science team has not yet assigned a difficulty level to it, so we can't provide you with an exact answer. However, we intended it to be challenging; we wrote it to come in at a 650+ level.
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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Mar 2019, 03:47
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).

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Re: It is estimated that over 10 billion packs of cigarettes are smoked in   [#permalink] 04 Mar 2019, 03:47
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