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QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the

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QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the [#permalink]

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Verbal Question of The Day: Day 56: Critical Reasoning


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Kernland imposes a high tariff on the export of unprocessed cashew nuts in order to ensure that the nuts are sold to domestic processing plants. If the tariff were lifted and unprocessed cashews were sold at world market prices, more farmers could profit by growing cashews. However, since all the processing plants are in urban areas, removing the tariff would seriously hamper the government's effort to reduce urban unemployment over the next five years.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

(A) Some of the byproducts of processing cashews are used for manufacturing paints and plastics.

(B) Other countries in which cashews are processed subsidize their processing plants.

(C) More people in Kernland are engaged in farming cashews than in processing them.

(D) Buying unprocessed cashews at lower than world-market prices enable cashew processors in Kernland to sell processed nuts at competitive prices.

(E) A lack of profitable crops is driving an increasing number of small farmers in Kernland off their land and into the cities

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Re: QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the [#permalink]

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If you want to find a statement that weakens an argument, you have to start by understanding that argument. Start with the conclusion: "removing the {high tariff on the export of unprocessed cashew nuts} would seriously hamper the government's effort to reduce urban unemployment over the next five years."

Now make sure you understand the structure of the argument--how does the author arrive at that conclusion?

  • The first sentence tells us about the high tariff that is currently in place and that ensures that unprocessed cashew nuts are sold to domestic processing plants.
  • The second sentence tell us that more farmers could profit by growing cashews if the tariff were lifted and unprocessed cashews were sold at world market prices.
  • We can infer that selling cashews at world market prices (without the tariff) would be more profitable for Kernland farmers than selling the cashews to domestic processing plants. In other words, the price at which farmers currently sell unprocessed cashews to domestic plants is LOWER than the world market price, but because of the high tariff the farmers cannot take advantage of the higher world market price.
  • If the tariff were removed and the farmers began exporting more of their unprocessed cashews, sales of unprocessed cashews to domestic processing plants would be reduced. If the domestic plants have fewer cashews to process, the plants, which are all located in urban areas, would likely need fewer employees, potentially leading to layoffs.
  • Thus, according to the author, removing the tariff would likely lead to a loss of jobs at domestic processing plants. This job loss would "seriously hamper the government's effort to reduce urban unemployment over the next five years."

Now, which of the answer choices most seriously weakens this argument?

Quote:
A. Some of the byproducts of processing cashews are used for manufacturing paints and plastics.

Regardless of what cashew processing plants do with some of the byproducts, removing the tariff might still lower the amount of work for domestic plants, leading to a loss of jobs and possibly hampering the government's effort to reduce urban unemployment. This fact does not impact the author's argument, so (A) can be eliminated.

Quote:
B. Other countries in which cashews are processed subsidize their processing plants.

We are told that "if the tariff were lifted and unprocessed cashews were sold at world market prices, more farmers could profit by growing cashews." This implies that Kernland farmers would, in the absence of the tariff, sell more cashews to other countries and sell fewer cashews to domestic plants. Statement (B) does not impact this reasoning, so (B) can be eliminated.

Quote:
C. More people in Kernland are engaged in farming cashews than in processing them.

Just because MORE people in Kernland are engaged in farming cashews does not mean that the number of people engaged in processing cashews is small. If a significant portion of Kernland's population is engaged in processing cashews, there could be a significant number of lost jobs if more cashews are exported. Choice (C) does not necessarily impact the author's reasoning and can be eliminated.

Quote:
D. Buying unprocessed cashews at lower than world-market prices enable cashew processors in Kernland to sell processed nuts at competitive prices.

This statement does not weaken the author's argument. In fact, if true, this statement probably strengthens the author's argument. Currently, cashew processors in Kernland can sell processed nuts at competitive prices. If the tariff is lifted, cashew processors would have to raise their prices to maintain current profit levels, and this might lead to a decline in sales if some consumers are unwilling to pay those higher prices. A decline in sales would make it more likely that domestic plant workers might lose their jobs. Eliminate (D).

Quote:
E. A lack of profitable crops is driving an increasing number of small farmers in Kernland off their land and into the cities

If an increasing number of small farmers leave their land to go to the cities, there will be fewer farmers to grow and harvest unprocessed cashews in Kernland. Gradually, the domestic plants might have fewer domestic cashews to process and will either have to import cashews at the higher world market price or reduce plant operations. Thus, statement (E) suggests that domestic plant workers might lose their jobs if the tariff is NOT removed. Furthermore, with more and more people (the former small farmers who left their land) moving to the cities looking for work, it is quite possible that urban unemployment will rise. If statement (E) is true, removing the tariff would encourage more farmers to stay in Kernland and grow cashews that need to be processed. Thus, statement (E) is evidence that removing the tariff will NOT seriously hamper the government's effort to reduce urban unemployment. This weakens the author's argument, so (E) is the best answer.
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Re: QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jul 2017, 18:39
IMO E

A. Some of the byproducts of processing cashews are used for manufacturing paints and plastics - irrelevant
B. Other countries in which cashews are processed subsidize their processing plants - irrelevant
C. More people in Kernland are engaged in farming cashews than in processing them - does not weaken
D. Buying unprocessed cashews at lower than world-market prices enable cashew processors in Kernland to sell processed nuts at competitive prices - irrelevant
E. A lack of profitable crops is driving an increasing number of small farmers in Kernland off their land and into the cities - when more come to city, it increases the probability of unemployment. hence the answer.

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Re: QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jul 2017, 18:45
A B irrelevant
C even if true still will cause unemployment in urban area. Does not weaken
D is rephrased version of the para
E weakens if farmers will move out then production of cashews will reduce, leading to unemployment eventually in urban areas due to lack of cashew for processing
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Re: QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jul 2017, 02:53
souvik101990 wrote:

Kernland imposes a high tariff on the export of unprocessed cashew nuts in order to ensure that the nuts are sold to domestic processing plants. If the tariff were lifted and unprocessed cashews were sold at world market prices, more farmers could profit by growing cashews. However, since all the processing plants are in urban areas, removing the tariff would seriously hamper the government's effort to reduce urban unemployment over the next five years.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

A. Some of the byproducts of processing cashews are used for manufacturing paints and plastics.
B. Other countries in which cashews are processed subsidize their processing plants.
C. More people in Kernland are engaged in farming cashews than in processing them.
D. Buying unprocessed cashews at lower than world-market prices enable cashew processors in Kernland to sell processed nuts at competitive prices.
E. A lack of profitable crops is driving an increasing number of small farmers in Kernland off their land and into the cities


Analyzing the prompt: The government focus its effort on processing plants. It imposed the tariff to save them and taking into consideration the farmers and their profitability to continue or grow their businesses. The government Goal is to reduce the unemployment rate in URBAN cites where processing plants locate.

We will try to WEAKEN the effort by showing a factor that Might increase the employment rate or at least keep it stable over the next 5 years.

A. Some of the byproducts of processing cashews are used for manufacturing paints and plastics.
This factor talks about the usage of the cashews in industry. But it does show how it will affect the employment rate. Should those industries hire more people or not. It does not help. Irrelevant

B. Other countries in which cashews are processed subsidize their processing plants.
This factor does not show any effect how it will weaken the goal of the governments by using the imposed tariff. It talks about another strategy to help industry. Out of scope

C. More people in Kernland are engaged in farming cashews than in processing them.
Does it help to know many people work in processing than in farming. The factor might help to strengthen the government's goal by showing saying 'ya go ahead to impose tariff to save those people in processing'. Wrong reason

D. Buying unprocessed cashews at lower than world-market prices enable cashew processors in Kernland to sell processed nuts at competitive prices.
This factor does show how will effort by weakened by imposing the tariff. This factor is somehow is like subsidizing the processing industry and help them Wrong choice.

E. A lack of profitable crops is driving an increasing number of small farmers in Kernland off their land and into the cities
Bingo. Imposing the tariff leads to low profitability for farmers, especially smaller, who might not only abandon the business but also immigrate to urban cities. It won't help the government who would find more people coming to the cities searching for jobs.

Answer: E

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Re: QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jul 2017, 09:38
In option E "A lack of profitable crops " - why does this crop have to be cashew only? It can be any other crop corn,wheat,paddy etc.. that is driving these farmers from their lands to urban areas.

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QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the [#permalink]

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New post 18 Nov 2017, 14:27
To understand E

argument is : Removing tariff -----> Unemployment
to undermine this we have to say X-----> unemployment

Lack of profitable crop =>Increasing number of farmers to quit farming and move to city seeking employment => more unemployment as => Domestic processing plants will not receive any cashews or they receive fewer cashews to process so unemployment from processing plant as well as from farmers side leads => MORE UNEMPLOYMENT
THEREFORE SOMETHING OTHER THAN TARIFF -----> UNEMPLOYMENT



answer is E.
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QOTD: Kernland imposes a high tariff on the   [#permalink] 18 Nov 2017, 14:27
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