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No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating

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No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 11 Feb 2018, 23:56
1
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00:00
A
B
C
D
E

Difficulty:

  45% (medium)

Question Stats:

48% (00:44) correct 52% (00:49) wrong based on 1110 sessions

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GMAT Paper Test (Test Code 55), 1996

Practice Question
Question No.: SC 16
Page: 24

No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating certain items, travelers often treat customs inspectors like wanton poachers rather than government employees.

(A) travelers often treat customs inspectors like wanton poachers rather than government employees

(B) travelers often treat customs inspectors as wanton poachers instead of government employees

(C) travelers often treat customs inspectors as if they were not government employees but wanton poachers

(D) customs inspectors are often treated by travelers as if they were wanton poachers rather than government employees

(E) customs inspectors are often treated not like government employees but wanton poachers by travelers

Originally posted by Mikhail on 21 Nov 2003, 00:27.
Last edited by hazelnut on 11 Feb 2018, 23:56, edited 2 times in total.
Edited the question.
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 21 Nov 2003, 00:33
D.

reason i could think:

the clause No matter ---- items, modifies custom inspectors rather than travellers in the context of the sentence. So the comma should be followed immediately by custom inspectors.


answer ??
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 06 Sep 2009, 21:58
2
D
modifier should be customs inspectors and not travelers...so only D,E remain..
D is better written than E
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 13 Nov 2009, 00:27
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Definitely, D.

This is because the modifier in the beginning of the sentence talks about the customs inspectors, not travellers. Therefore, choices A, B, & C are eliminated.

Between D & E, E is ruled out because "often treated not like government employees but wanton poachers by travelers" is poor sentence construction.

Hope this makes sense.
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 25 Jan 2010, 14:01
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No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating certain items, travelers often treat customs inspectors like wanton poachers rather than government employees.
(A) travelers often treat customs inspectors like wanton poachers rather than government employees
Correct - best option available....

(B) travelers often treat customs inspectors as wanton poachers instead of government employees
as is wrong... it is similar comparison and hence it should be Like.

(C) travelers often treat customs inspectors as if they were not government employees but wanton poachers
If is not correct..... never used for comparing in GMAT

(D) customs inspectors are often treated by travelers as if they were wanton poachers rather than government employees
If is not correct..... never used for comparing in GMAT

(E) customs inspectors are often treated not like government employees but wanton poachers by travelers
by travellers should be next treated... else it becomes 'not treated like government employees' but how 'wanton poachers are treated by travelers'
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 06 Aug 2010, 10:17
Choices A,B,C, can be eliminated immediately because of the use of the antecedent "they," which appears before the comma. In this sentence, "they" is modifying "customs inspectors" not travelers.

Reread it like this: "No matter how patiently [TRAVELERS] explain their reasons for confiscating certain items, TRAVELERS often treat customs inspectors like wanton poachers rather than government employees." Does that make sense? NO. Travelers aren’t confiscating items from themselves.

Does this make sense: "No matter how patiently [CUSTOMS INSPECTORS] explain their reasons for confiscating certain items, [THEY] are often treated… wanton poachers rather than government employees."

This makes sense also, and ultimately this construction is correct: "No matter how patiently [THEY] explain their reasons for confiscating certain items, [CUSTOMS INSPECTORS] are often treated… wanton poachers rather than government employees."

There really isn’t a way for either of choices A, B, or C to be correct. (Antecedents can be deadly.)

Choices D and E are the only viable options. Honestly, both D and E are wrong to me. But D has the least sever problem, thus it is ultimately the answer. The biggest problem with D is the use of the word “were.” Doesn’t the use of this word here break the tense rule? “… Inspectors ARE often treated by travelers as if they WERE...” This construction is problematic! “Were” seems to change the tense of the sentence here, doesn’t it?

The glaring problem with E, though, makes it incorrect. Choice E leaves out the final “like” which is necessary to completely relate the idiom – not like X…. but [like] Y. That really is the only thing wrong with choice E.

I don’t agree with the argument that treated like is idiomatically incorrect. I’d like to add some complex deep reason for why I disagree with this argument, but I don’t have one. My reasoning is really quite simple. The phrase “treated like” is used regularly by writers for New York Times, as well the Associated Press. I know we don’t all always agree with the political ideals the Times seems to represent, but I think it goes without saying that the best writers in the world write for that paper; they don’t make mistakes. Ever. Hence, my rule of thumb regarding grammar: If it’s in the Times it’s right… that’s it.
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 05 Mar 2011, 07:03
As if they were: It must be noted that it is not the use of just ‘if’ but ‘as if’ that is in focus. The effect of comparison comes because of the conjunction “as”. “As if” is a legitimate comparative phrase, used in the past subjunctive mood. We are required to use the verb of the past subjunctive “were” since the treatment as wanton poachers is a hypothetical one and not real. ‘As if they are’ can be used only in actual cases.

Pronoun ‘they’: Theoretically ‘they’ might refer to travelers or inspectors. But logically? Can ‘they’ refer to travelers? If you replace ‘they’ with ‘travelers’, the sentence will read: customs inspectors are often treated by travelers as if travelers (they) were wanton poachers rather than government employees. The absurdity of the hypothetical ambiguity is obvious. Hence ‘they’ refers to inspectors only.

D is the right one
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2016, 04:11
Isn't "They" in D ambiguous? It can refer to both travelers and custom officers.
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2016, 06:46
Ankit73 wrote:
Isn't "They" in D ambiguous? It can refer to both travelers and custom officers.


Hi,

No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating certain items, customs inspectors are often treated by travelers as if they were wanton poachers rather than government employees...

If you look at the onon-underlined portion, 'they' has been used and it also refers to custom officers....
Custom officers is the SUBJECT and all subject pronoun will refer to the SUBJECT noun..
they is also used as subject pronoun here in underlined portion
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Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating [#permalink]

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New post 03 Apr 2018, 07:23
modifier is modifying customer officer rather than travelers
Re: No matter how patiently they explain their reasons for confiscating   [#permalink] 03 Apr 2018, 07:23
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