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03 Dec 2010, 03:59

The following appeared in the editorial section of a local newspaper:
"In the first four years that Montoya has served as mayor of the city of San Perdito, the population has decreased and the unemployment rate has increased. Two businesses have closed for each new business that has opened. Under Varro, who served as mayor for four years before Montoya, the unemployment rate decreased and the population increased. Clearly, the residents of San Perdito would be best served if they voted Montoya out of office and reelected Varro".

Discussed how well reasoned....etc.

The argument states that during first four years of Montoya's tenure as the mayor of the city of San Perdito, the population has decreased and unemployment rate has increased. Further it states that two businesses have been closed for each one that has opened. Under Varro, the previous mayor of San Perdito, the unemployment rate decreased and population increased. Clearly it would be better to vote Montoya out of office and vote in Varro again. This argument is pretty weak and I would like to cite many discrepancies as to why this argument is weak.

Firstly the argument tries to impose upon us that during the first four years of Montoya being in charge as Mayor of the city, the population has decreased and unemployment has increased. The author neither shows any statistical evidence that population has increased nor does he show statistical information that unemployment rate has increased. Furthermore, it is dubious of the author to declare that these two (unemployment rate and population size) are interrelated without showing any concrete proof of their relation. The decrease in population may be due to an outbreak of epidemic or various other factors. The unemployment rate may have remained the same for the last four years but people who were employed may have gone to other town to seek greener pastures than their current job.

Secondly the author states that two businesses have closed for each one that has opened. Again it is a very vague statement and cannot be used as a evidence for his conclusion. The two businesses which were closed might have been relatively small and the new one that was opened might be three to four times larger than the two that was closed. If this is not the case then there is no statistical evidence used by author to prove his case.

Thirdly the author states that under Varro the unemployment rate decreased and population increased. Again the author does not give any statistical information to support his statement. In this case also he fails to come up with any data that shows the proportionality between unemployment rate and population size.

Last but not the least, the author concludes that people would be best served if they voted out Montoya and reelect Varro.The author fails to consider the overall health of the global or national economy during Varro's tenure and Montoya's present tenure. During the time period of Varro the economy would have been doing so good that even though the unemployment rate in the city was higher than other cites it was not noticed by anybody. Also the regulations and bills implemented by Varro at the end of his tenure might have impacted the present tenure of Montoya.

If the above mentioned evidences had been presented by the author we could have considered the validity of the author's statements but as things stand we can dismiss the author's argument as very weak and vulnerable to criticism.
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