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# Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets

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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
I always bear in my mind that Resolve the Paradox questions are all about explain why A (warning sign) but still B (increasing pickpocket rate). A (warning sign) must be involved and take a part in right answer. That's why I did choose right answer (C) quite quickly.

This is my thoughts when I come across answer choices (A) and (B):
I think both are very tempting. Yes they may all explain why B (increasing pickpocket rate) happens.. but LOOK. Do they mention A (warning sign)? No! Can you see that choices (A) and (B) can still explain for "increasing pickpocket rate" even when "warning sign" does not exist? Then this is not what we need in Resolve the Paradox type of questions!
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
arbinose wrote:
One can assume that tourist can be easy target for pick pocketing, yet it is difficult to find a correlation as even tourist can read the beware board and become cautious about their possessions, so A can be easily rule out, C seems like the only somewhat logical explanation for the given discrepancy.

I agree. One more thing, when the rider checks for his possessions it becomes easier for the thief to find the valuables !
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
I feel C is by far worst answer. Before sign boards were used, people might have forgotten about their belongings. Now Sign boards are present, those people who sees sign boards are aware and that is why people keep checking of their belongings all the way and no way yo can rob things from the people who are aware.

The best option for me is E, although this might not explain increase in the number, but says that subway is so crowded and that we can assume people not able to watch sign boards.
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
C.

Conclusion is: "Since" the new signs have been erected, the riders have had their pockets picked at nearly double the rate than before. We have to look for the change that the signs brought because of which the rate increased by two times.

(A) Since Central Station’s major renovation, during which the signs were erected, Central Station has become much more attractive to tourists from out of town. Does not give any information on how becoming more attractive to tourists=double the rate. Incorrect.

(B) Rising gas prices and a surging downtown job market have caused the daily number of riders at Central Station nearly to double within the past year. Overcrowding may be a possible reason for the pickpocketers to find easy targets. But then, what is the significance of the signs that were erected? Hold but check other options with some connection between signs and rate increase.

(C) Riders walking past the new signs tend to rummage through their pockets or feel through their clothes to verify the presence of their possessions. So the signs made it easier for the pickpocketers to do their jobs. Hold.

(D) The number of individuals convicted of petty theft or grand theft for picking pockets at Central Station has decreased within the past year. Does not directly relate with our conclusion of signs erected=rate increase. Incorrect.

(E) Most of the pickpockets’ victims were riding the subway during peak travel hours, when Central Station is especially crowded. Possible contender. But again, does not relate "signs" with the conclusion. The conclusion clearly states "since the signs were erected. Hence, something must have changed after the signs were erected that made it easier for the pickpocketers and doubled the rate of incidences. Incorrect.

Therefore, only C clarifies the situation.
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Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
GMATNinja , broall

Didn't understand why C is the correct answer
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
prateek176 wrote:
GMATNinja , broall

Didn't understand why C is the correct answer

Hey prateek176 ,

C is correct for the right reasons.

Adding those signs actually helped pickpocketers. You may ask how?

Consider I am passing through that sign, the moment I checked that sign, I tried to verify whether my wallet is at the right place.

Now, some thief was looking at my actions and got to know where are my valuable stuffs. Hence, it becomes easy for the thief to pickpocket it once I am going away from those signs.

Hence, option C is clearly providing the negative impact of those signs and helps resolving the paradox.

Does that make sense?
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
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abhimahna wrote:
prateek176 wrote:
GMATNinja , broall

Didn't understand why C is the correct answer

Hey prateek176 ,

C is correct for the right reasons.

Adding those signs actually helped pickpocketers. You may ask how?

Consider I am passing through that sign, the moment I checked that sign, I tried to verify whether my wallet is at the right place.

Now, some thief was looking at my actions and got to know where are my valuable stuffs. Hence, it becomes easy for the thief to pickpocket it once I am going away from those signs.

Hence, option C is clearly providing the negative impact of those signs and helps resolving the paradox.

Does that make sense?

I don't think it does. It is a low quality question. In your explanation itself, you have to write out so many assumptions viz. thief was looking at you (How come it got doubled), it becomes easier for them (Why can't it be more difficult since people have moved their valuables to safer location e.g. from wallet in the pocket to wallet in bag).

Justifying a fallible argument doesn't make sense.
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Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
Here rummage means an untidy or unsystematic search. If people after reading signs search their belongings in unsystematic way, then chances are that they end up leaving them in incorrect position to easily fall off while walking. Later upon realizing the belonging is missing, they report it as pick-pocketed.

I agree this question has a lot of assumptions and looks like a poor quality one.
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Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
parker wrote:
Hey guys,

I agree that you have to make some assumptions about C--something that might help with this one is knowing that you *almost always* have to make some assumptions (unless you are in one of those rare, lsat-like questions with more formal logic). It's more accurate to think of the real question here as what "most explains" the discrepancy...meaning--which of the choices requires the fewest and smallest assumptions? It's all relative.

The discrepancy that we're trying to address is "why did the per capita instances of pickpocketing double after warning signs were posted?"

I won't go into all the choices, since the original poster copied the explanation. The main contention in this thread seems to be between A-B-C, so let's assume we got rid of D and E and deal with these.

As a couple of posters mentioned above, *per capita* is a huge red flag phrase here. That means the number of pickpocketed people divided by the total number of people, doubled. This could happen a number of ways, so let's use a number to help make the situation tangible--100 people, and 10 are pickpocketed per day, so there's an original per capita pickpocket rate of 0.1.

(1) if the total population stays the same--100 people, but the rate doubles to 0.2, or 20 people, that means that out of a (fictionalized) 100 people, 10 of the people who were NOT pickpocketed before ARE pickpocketed now.

(2) if the total population increased--let's say, it increased by 100%, so we now have 200 people. In order for the rate to double to 0.2, we would need 20% of the new total population (200 people), or 40 people, to be pickpocketed after the signs go up. Notice you had to increase the number of pickpocketed people by more than two, to compensate for the ratio increase AND population increase.

(3) if the total population decreased--let's say, to 50 people. The per capita pickpocket rate we're aiming for is 0.2, and 20% of 50 is 10, so 10 people still get pickpocketed, but there are only 50 people total, so the only people who left the original population were non-pickpocketed people.

Choice (A) says that the station has become much more attractive to tourists since the signs were posted during a recent renovation. Now in general, it's a good idea to be suspicious of assumptions that fall into common stereotypes; the test-writers know many common "real world" broad assumptions, and will use that to trap people. There is a broad stereotype about tourists being easy targets. But even if that were true (assumption 1) AND tourists are TWICE as likely to get pickpocketed (assumption 2) we'd have to make another assumption (no.3) about the rest of the population balancing out in a way to result in our desired statistic. That's the long version--the short version is that COMMON STEREOTYPES THAT ARE NOT SPECIFICALLY JUSTIFIED IN THE ARGUMENT should be targets of major suspicion as you go through choices. There isn't a necessary causal link between being a tourist and being an easy target--I, for one, am super paranoid and careful when I travel and have never (knock on wood) been pickpocketed while traveling, though I have in my home city!

Choice (B) doesn't necessarily help us because the phase "per capita" is in the argument. Look at situation #2 above-- if the traffic doubles, but the rate of pickpocketing is the same, the per capita rate doesn't change. In our example above with the population of 100 and a 100% increase in population, the rate of pickpocketing would have to quadruple to give us a doubled per capita rate.

Choice (C) does involve some assumptions,yes-- that the pickpocketers will pay attention to the rummaging going on and use it to their advantage. But this is not a terribly illogical assumption to make, since their goal is to pickpocket people, and these people are behaving in an obvious way that would assist that goal.

Hope this helps. Remember that correct/incorrect on verbal can seem relative, which is why you should ALWAYS go through all the answers and eliminate what's definitely wrong (or has the most problems) rather than trying to find the perfect answer.

It can be "E" as well right? Assuming that the people were not able to look at the sign because of the crowd & the chaos thus helped pickpocket.
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
Why C?

The sign gets erected -> More People check their possessions [at the said location] -> More people report that their pockets have been picked [at the said location]

If it were not for the increased checking, people would not know that their pockets were picked at said location, and so their case just would not register.
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
OE:

A
The riders’ city of origin is irrelevant to the frequency of pickpocketing, unless unwarranted assumptions are made about the vulnerability of out-of-towners to pickpocketing.

B
A doubling of the number of riders at Central Station would help to explain a sharp rise in the absolute rate at which riders’ pockets are picked, but does not explain a rise in the per-capita theft rate. Although it is possible that the additional crowding induced by the new riders might raise the likelihood of pickpocketing, that inference would require additional assumptions.

C = Correct
If riders walking past the new signs tend to rummage through their pockets or feel through their clothes to verify the presence of their possessions, then lurking pickpockets will be able to locate those possessions by watching the riders’ hands – something which will help them to steal the possessions, and which they were unable to do before the new signs were erected.

D
In general, but especially because pickpocketing is a crime whose offenders largely go unpunished (because the crime is not discovered until well after the fact), there is no clear relationship between the frequency of pickpocketing and the rate at which offenders are convicted for it.

E
No connection is made to the massive increase in pickpocketing during the last year, so this consideration is irrelevant.

The correct answer is C.
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
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Re: Last year, after the number of subway riders who had had their pockets [#permalink]
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