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Opponents of compulsory national service claim that such a program is

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Opponents of compulsory national service claim that such a program is  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 21 Aug 2019, 05:53
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Opponents of compulsory national service claim that such a program is not in keeping with the liberal principles upon which Western democracies are founded. This reasoning is reminiscent of the argument that a tax on one’s income is undemocratic because it violates one’s right to property. Such conceptions of the liberal state fail to take into account the intricate character of the social agreement that undergirds our liberties. It is only in the context of a community that the notion of individual rights has any application; individual rights are meant to define the limits of people’s actions with respect to other people. Implicit in such a context is the concept of shared sacrifice. Were no taxes paid, there could be no law enforcement, and the enforcement of law is of benefit to everyone in society. Thus, each of us must bear a share of the burden to ensure that the community is protected.

The responsibility to defend one’s nation against outside aggression is surely no less than the responsibility to help pay for law enforcement within the nation. Therefore, the state is certainly within its rights to compel citizens to perform national service when it is needed for the benefit of society.

It might be objected that the cases of taxation and national service are not analogous: While taxation must be coerced, the military is quite able to find recruits without resorting to conscription. Furthermore, proponents of national service do not limit its scope to only those duties absolutely necessary to the defense of the nation. Therefore, it may be contended, compulsory national service oversteps the acceptable boundaries of governmental interference in the lives of its citizens.

By responding thus, the opponent of national service has already allowed that it is a right of government to demand service when it is needed. But what is the true scope of the term “need”? If it is granted, say, that present tax policies are legitimate intrusions on the right to property, then it must also be granted that need involves more than just what is necessary for a sound national defense. Even the most conservative of politicians admits that tax money is rightly spent on programs that, while not necessary for the survival of the state, are nevertheless of great benefit to society. Can the opponent of national service truly claim that activities of the military such as quelling civil disorders, rebuilding dams and bridges, or assisting the victims of natural disasters—all extraneous to the defense of society against outside aggression—do not provide a similar benefit to the nation? Upon reflection, opponents of national service must concede that such a broadened conception of what is necessary is in keeping with the ideas of shared sacrifice and community benefit that are essential to the functioning of a liberal democratic state.
1. Which one of the following most accurately describes the author’s attitude toward the relationship between citizenship and individual rights in a democracy?
(A) confidence that individual rights are citizens’ most important guarantees of personal freedom
(B) satisfaction at how individual rights have protected citizens from unwarranted government intrusion
(C) alarm that so many citizens use individual rights as an excuse to take advantage of one another
(D) concern that individual rights represent citizens’ only defense against government interference
(E) dissatisfaction at how some citizens cite individual rights as a way of avoiding certain obligations to their government

OA:



2. The author indicates all politicians agree about the
(A) legitimacy of funding certain programs that serve the national good
(B) use of the military to prevent domestic disorders
(C) similarity of conscription and compulsory taxation
(D) importance of broadening the definition of necessity
(E) compatibility of compulsion with democratic principles

OA:



3. Which one of the following most accurately characterizes what the author means by the term “social agreement” (line 8)?
(A) an agreement among members of a community that the scope of their individual liberties is limited somewhat by their obligations to one another
(B) an agreement among members of a community that they will not act in ways that infringe upon each other’s pursuit of individual liberty
(C) an agreement among members of a community that they will petition the government for redress when government actions limit their rights
(D) an agreement between citizens and their government detailing which government actions do or do not infringe upon citizen’s personal freedoms
(E) an agreement between citizens and their government stating that the government has right to suspend individual liberties whenever it sees fit

OA:



4. According to the author, national service and taxation are analogous in the sense that both
(A) do not require that citizens be compelled to help bring them about
(B) are at odds with the notion of individual rights in a democracy
(C) require different degrees of sacrifice from different citizens
(D) allow the government to overstep its boundaries and interfere in the lives of citizens
(E) serve ends beyond those related to the basic survival of the state

OA:



5. Based on the information in the passage, which one of the following would most likely be found objectionable by those who oppose compulsory national service?
(A) the use of tax revenues to prevent the theft of national secrets by foreign agents
(B) the use of tax revenues to fund relief efforts for victims of natural disasters in other nations
(C) the use of tax revenues to support the upkeep of the nation’s standing army
(D) the use of tax revenues to fund programs for the maintenance of domestic dams and bridges
(E) the use of tax revenues to aid citizens who are victims of natural disasters

OA:



My Take was
DADDB

OAs were-
-EAAEB


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Originally posted by nitya34 on 02 Jul 2009, 04:03.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 21 Aug 2019, 05:53, edited 2 times in total.
Updated - Complete topic (250).
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Re: Opponents of compulsory national service claim that such a program is  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jul 2009, 23:38
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If you need, will post few OEs also

Main Idea is at para 2
Therefore, the state is certainly within its rights to compel citizens to perform national service when it is needed for the benefit of society.

In general, always Follow this

read the first sentence of each paragraph carefully, so should you pay extra attention to the last sentence of an entire passage. The last sentence often summarizes the author’s main idea in a clear and helpful way.

regarding the 4th Q(related to main idea)

Whats the analogy between national service and taxation?Why? Because the author claims they both are necessary burdens when imposed upon citizens to satisfy important needs of society. With that idea firmly in mind, only (E) makes sense—and it makes perfect sense.
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New post 06 Jul 2009, 10:55
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Thanks for the above tips, though they are very popular, most of us forget to use them while speeding through an RC passage

without looking at the OA very carefully, i just skimmed through to find that my last three answers were wrong, so tried to redo them.

For #3, i chose E again, because I was not very comfy with the phrase "to one-another" in A. Otherwise A was obviously the best option.

For #4, i could make out E this time. :-D Should have been more careful with the words "according to the author"

For #5, unfortunately i could recall that the answer was either E or B, and upon seeing the options i knew i could never have chosen B, and thus I had chosen E earlier. But i strongly felt B was out of scope of the passage.

The question says "based on the passage", and there is absolutely no information in the passage regarding foreign aid - not even something that can help us infer such a thing. Help???
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New post 09 Jul 2009, 04:07
rashminet84 wrote:
For #5, unfortunately i could recall that the answer was either E or B, and upon seeing the options i knew i could never have chosen B, and thus I had chosen E earlier. But i strongly felt B was out of scope of the passage.

The question says "based on the passage", and there is absolutely no information in the passage regarding foreign aid - not even something that can help us infer such a thing. Help???


the question means based on whatever has been provided in the passage, the opponents of compulsory national service are most likely to object to which of the following- it is an inference question (even though the question starts with "based on") as it has not been explicitly given what all they would object to.


"Can the opponent of national service truly claim that activities of the military such as quelling civil disorders, rebuilding dams and bridges, or assisting the victims of natural disasters—all extraneous to the defense of society against outside aggression—do not provide a similar benefit to the nation? Upon reflection, opponents of national service must concede that such a broadened conception of what is necessary ...."
=> the opponents of compulsory service cannot claim that such activities are not needed=> they would not object to such activities


A. would not object. of prime importance for the survival of the nation
C, D and E all come within the purview of the activites described in the last para=> the opponents of compulsory national service would not object to such activities

B. is of no benefit to the people of the nation. so opponents would most likely object to it.


(i got it wrong as well, had to re-read to justify the OA)
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New post 01 Jun 2014, 19:44
this passage is highly abstract and hard.
the og passages are well structured. this point means the ideas in the passage are well connected and the questions ask about this connection. this passage dose not this tight connection and its questions ask about an idea which is hard to find in the passage.

what I want to say is that the difficulty of this passage is not typical of the og passage.
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New post 21 Jul 2017, 05:50
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angierch wrote:
Hi,

Can someone please help explaining question 3, in specific why is option A better than B? To me, they seem very similar.

Thank you!




The difference between A & B :
A: the scope of their individual liberties is limited somewhat by their obligations to one another --> "obligations" include "do" and "don't"
B: they will not act in ways that infringe upon each other’s pursuit of individual liberty ---> it is just a subset of "obligations", a type of "don't"

The clue in the passage talking about "social agreement": "It is only in the context of a community that the notion of individual rights has any application; individual rights are meant to define the limits of people’s actions with respect to other people."
---> Limits of people's actions with respect to other people ~ people's obligation in society

--> B is obviously closer to the author's notion of social agreement
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New post 21 Jul 2017, 06:00
I squeezed my mind with 4th question, still can't understand the answer, which i narrate as follows:
Both national service and taxation serve ends beyond those related to the basic survival of the state

What does it mean by "ends"? What is the basic survival of the state?

Please help me explain them? How can you connect them with the content of passage?

Many thanks,
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New post 03 Aug 2017, 10:09
Hientran48 wrote:
I squeezed my mind with 4th question, still can't understand the answer, which i narrate as follows:
Both national service and taxation serve ends beyond those related to the basic survival of the state

What does it mean by "ends"? What is the basic survival of the state?

Please help me explain them? How can you connect them with the content of passage?

Many thanks,



I hope this is not too late!

Let's see. I connected the answer choice here in the passage:
Quote:
......Even the most conservative of politicians admits that tax money is rightly spent on programs that, while not necessary for the survival of the state, are nevertheless of great benefit to society. Can the opponent of national service truly claim that activities of the military [.....] do not provide a similar benefit to the nation? Upon reflection, opponents of national service must concede that such a broadened conception of what is necessary is in keeping with the ideas of shared sacrifice and community benefit that are essential to the functioning of a liberal democratic state.


What the red marked text is saying? It says that tax money is used beyond the "necessary" things needed for basic survival of the state.
What is blue marked text? This co-relates tax and national service.

A something on interrogative:
When a sentence is turned into interrogative sentence, it is negated. Consider following examples:
1.
Sentence: You Cant Do it.
Interrogative: You Cant do it, can you?
OR
Can you do it?
2.
Sentence: You can do it.
Interrogative: you can do it, can't you?
OR
Can't you do it?


Now the blue colored part is "Can the opponents claim the military activities (national service) do not provide similar (similar to taxation) benefits". can they? This is 1st case from above. So negating the sentence will be: "Opponents cant claim that military activities do not provide similar benefits." Which effectively means that national service provide similar benefits to taxation.
And what benefits? Benefits that are beyond the basic survival! :)

And for the last part: What does ends means? It means the limits of basic survival of state. Both serve beyond what is considered "ends" of the activities needed for basic survival.

Hope I helped :)
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New post 11 Aug 2017, 08:30
Nice passage, however long one... took long time to absorb and even for answering questions ...

Question 5 is in the format of gmat questions but OA is little odd...

With the strong wording as 'Based on the information in the passage' one can feel difficulty to think for a hypothetical situation in which ans is not at all mentioned in the entire passage.

I felt its ok to mark question 5 wrong as it shows that one adheres to the rules of RC concept of out of scope answers.

It would be better if we know the source of this question to confirm that weather we need to update our understanding of question 5 like.
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New post 15 Apr 2018, 20:04
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~8:30 min
got them all correct, pretty straightforward passage and question sets

a lot of people answered (B), which is incorrect for question 3
The social agreement mentioned throughout the passage focused on how individuals right have limitations
some national services are necessary in order for the society to function properly. (national defense ... etc)
Therefore you should have picked (A)

Answer (B) is the ideal society for classic liberals but the passage is not describing that

3. Which one of the following most accurately characterizes what the author means by the term “social agreement” (line 8)?
(A) an agreement among members of a community that the scope of their individual liberties is limited somewhat by their obligations to one another
(B) an agreement among members of a community that they will not act in ways that infringe upon each other’s pursuit of individual liberty
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New post 06 Mar 2019, 22:25
i dont understand question 4. i think the author says that primarily taxation and national service are analogous because both are shared responsibility of the citizens and can be seen as sacrifice, secondly they are similar because thry serve ends beyond those related to the basic survival of the state.
so the answer should be c.
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Re: Opponents of compulsory national service claim that such a program is   [#permalink] 06 Mar 2019, 22:25
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