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# The drought in the central part of the country is estimated

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Director
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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12 Oct 2015, 04:21
Not an expert but prephrased assumption is:

No other option except irrigation exists

Only B fits
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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18 Feb 2016, 03:30
Choice A and E are irrelevant. Choice C is incorrect since what will happen in the next two years does not matter.
Choice D is incorrect since it is not necessary to increase to the normal level.
Choice B is correct since it strengthen the conclusion and negating it will weaken the argument.
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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16 Jun 2016, 10:43
EMPOWERgmatAllenT wrote:
gmatdog wrote:
The drought in the central part of the country is estimated to reduce this year's national corn harvest by more than one-third from its normal levels. Such a shortfall would subsequently increase meat and other food prices by about 17% in one year and 20% in two years. So, either we spend a small amount now to irrigate the largest affected corn fields and avert severe inflation later, or else fail to irrigate now and insure [ensure] inflation later.

The argument is valid only if

A. other American agricultural areas are also not expected to meet their anticipated corn yields this year
B. irrigation is the only way that the national corn yield can be significantly increased
C. the heat wave and drought will persist through the next two years
D. irrigation will insure [ensure] that corn harvests reach normal levels
E. it is politically feasible for government authorities to spend money irrigating fields at the present time

CLAIM:
1) We either have to irrigate the largest affected corn fields –or—
2) Fail to irrigate now and ensure inflation later

Basically, this argument is saying, irrigate OR ELSE! We need to find an answer that shows us that irrigation is the ONLY MEANS of averting inflation.

GOAL:
Find an answer that proves that it’s irrigate or else suffer inflation.

THE OPTIONS:

A. other American agricultural areas are also not expected to meet their anticipated corn yields this year
Wrong: Shade of Gray. If other areas are also not expected to meet their anticipated yields, would that prove that we either have to irrigate or face inflation later? It points us in the right direction, but it doesn’t PROVE that we either need to irrigate or face inflation later. This is what we’d like to call a shade of gray answer.

B. irrigation is the only way that the national corn yield can be significantly increased
YES! This answer proves that we either need to irrigate or face inflation later, because this answer tells that there is no other means.

C. the heat wave and drought will persist through the next two years
Wrong: Shade of Gray. If the heat wave and drought will persist for through the next two years, would that prove that we either have to irrigate or face inflation later? No. This answer tells us that similar conditions will persist, but it doesn’t prove that we HAVE TO irrigate to stave off inflation.

D. irrigation will insure [ensure] that corn harvests reach normal levels
Wrong: Shade of Gray. Obviously, this adds support that irrigation works, but does this prove that we either that we either have to irrigate or face inflation later? This answer might seem tempting, but it only shows that irrigation can work, but NOT that irrigation is the ONLY way. There could be many other ways in addition to irrigation that could ensure that corn harvests reach normal levels. So saying that irrigation will ensure that corn levels reach normal levels does NOT actually prove that its irrigation or else.

E. it is politically feasible for government authorities to spend money irrigating fields at the present time
Wrong: Out of Focus. Does this prove that we either that we either have to irrigate or face inflation later? Even if there were funding available, helps only addresses the likelihood of feasibility, but that wouldn’t prove that we either have to irrigate or face inflation later.

Correct Answer: B. It is the only option that proves that its irrigation or else face inflation.

A side note: this is a pretty rare variation of an assumption question on the GMAT, known as a SUFFICIENT assumption question. We’re asked to find the assumption that’s sufficient for the argument to hold. GMAT assumption questions almost always ask us to find an answer taken for granted by the argument, also known as a NECESSARY assumption. SUFFICIENT Assumption questions ask us to find an assumption that essentially proves the argument, so they require a different framework to select the right answer than the typical GMAT style assumption question.

Necessary assumption questions are FAR more frequently found on the LSAT.

Also note, the context here would mean the word “insure” would have to be “ensure”.

Hi Allen,
I am not able to understand why option D cannot be an assumption.
As per my analysis of the question, we need to irrigate the affected fields now to avoid inflation later. (Here the author states an implicit assumption that irrigating the fields will have the desired effect). This is what exactly option D says that 'irrigation will ensure that corn harvests reach normal levels'.
The argument breaks down if option D is not true.

Any other way to increase the corn yield should not have any impact on the argument as we are concerned only with irrigation.

Can you please explain this ?
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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15 May 2017, 11:40
Hi expert
could you please explain why b is better than D. and why b is the answer
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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15 May 2017, 21:07
The solution of irrigating does not imply from the stimulus that the irrigation will bring the harvest to its normal levels. It's simply implied that irrigation will make a difference and curb the inflation to certain degree not eradicate it completely. Hence D can be eliminated.
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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16 May 2017, 04:54
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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17 May 2017, 08:08
I chose D too ,but negating D gives us irrigation will not insure that corn harvests reach normal levels here it can be higher or lower. Hence D is not the required assumption. Only B fits.
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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17 May 2017, 10:13
kapilhede17 wrote:
The drought in the central part of the country is estimated to reduce this year's national corn harvest by more than one-third from its normal levels. Such a shortfall would subsequently increase meat and other food prices by about 17% in one year and 20% in two years. So, either we spend a small amount now to irrigate the largest affected corn fields and avert severe inflation later, or else fail to irrigate now and insure inflation later.

The argument is valid only if

other American agricultural areas are also not expected to meet their anticipated corn yields this year
irrigation is the only way that the national corn yield can be significantly increased
the heat wave and drought will persist through the next two years
irrigation will insure that corn harvests reach normal levels
it is politically feasible for government authorities to spend money irrigating fields at the present time

I need help to decide bw B and D

What about C , if there is no drought and heat wave for the next 2 years , won't the argument fall apart in that case too.
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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19 May 2017, 20:26
stne wrote:
kapilhede17 wrote:
The drought in the central part of the country is estimated to reduce this year's national corn harvest by more than one-third from its normal levels. Such a shortfall would subsequently increase meat and other food prices by about 17% in one year and 20% in two years. So, either we spend a small amount now to irrigate the largest affected corn fields and avert severe inflation later, or else fail to irrigate now and insure inflation later.

The argument is valid only if

other American agricultural areas are also not expected to meet their anticipated corn yields this year
irrigation is the only way that the national corn yield can be significantly increased
the heat wave and drought will persist through the next two years
irrigation will insure that corn harvests reach normal levels
it is politically feasible for government authorities to spend money irrigating fields at the present time

I need help to decide bw B and D

What about C , if there is no drought and heat wave for the next 2 years , won't the argument fall apart in that case too.

I think C is unnecessary, because stimulus already stated that "Such a shortfall would subsequently increase meat and other food prices by about 17% in one year and 20% in two years". It means no matter how long the drought and heat wave last for, their consequences still impact in two years.
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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15 Jun 2017, 22:31
kapilhede17 wrote:
The drought in the central part of the country is estimated to reduce this year's national corn harvest by more than one-third from its normal levels. Such a shortfall would subsequently increase meat and other food prices by about 17% in one year and 20% in two years. So, either we spend a small amount now to irrigate the largest affected corn fields and avert severe inflation later, or else fail to irrigate now and insure inflation later.

The argument is valid only if

other American agricultural areas are also not expected to meet their anticipated corn yields this year
irrigation is the only way that the national corn yield can be significantly increased
the heat wave and drought will persist through the next two years
irrigation will insure that corn harvests reach normal levels
it is politically feasible for government authorities to spend money irrigating fields at the present time

I need help to decide bw B and D

Initially choose "D" as the answer, but re-reading the paragraph and the options I understood "B" is better than "D".
The author mentions "either we spend a small amount now to irrigate the largest affected corn fields and avert severe inflation later, or else fail to irrigate now and insure inflation later" which can be true only if "irrigation" is the only way to increase the harvest.

Notice the if else block below.

if(irrigation=true){
Good harvest and avoid inflation.
}else{
Face sure inflation later
}
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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15 Aug 2017, 10:43
I was between B and C.

I chose C because my understanding was that the author assumes that the drought will persist the next 2 years because he/she has provided figures for increased meat prices for the next 2 years.

My predicted answer after reading the argument was that the author is assuming the drought to continue....

Can someone explain where I am wrong in my understanding?
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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15 Aug 2017, 10:57
I guess it is D.
Explaination:
The argument states if we do not irrigate the fields then we will suffer from inflation.That could imply irrigation could help stop inflation by bringing corn harvest to normal levels

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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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15 Aug 2017, 23:04
Merged topics. Please, search before posting questions!
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated [#permalink]

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19 Aug 2017, 14:17
I chose "C" first but on re-reading, B makes complete sense.

The drought in the central part of the country is estimated to reduce this year's national corn harvest by more than one-third from its normal levels. Such a shortfall would subsequently increase meat and other food prices by about 17% in one year and 20% in two years. So, either we spend a small amount now to irrigate the largest affected corn fields and avert severe inflation later, or else fail to irrigate now and insure inflation later.

The argument is valid only if

A. other American agricultural areas are also not expected to meet their anticipated corn yields this year -Okay, let them not meet their target. Out of scope.
B. irrigation is the only way that the national corn yield can be significantly increased -The conclusion says that either irrigate the fields and decrease the inflation or suffer at the hands of increased inflation. It means that only irrigation can decrease the inflation.
C. the heat wave and drought will persist through the next two years -Okay, it is a fact set. Out of scope
D. irrigation will insure that corn harvests reach normal levels -Nowhere in the argument it's written that the harvests will reach normal levels. Out of scope
E. it is politically feasible for government authorities to spend money irrigating fields at the present time -Out of scope
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Re: The drought in the central part of the country is estimated   [#permalink] 19 Aug 2017, 14:17

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