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These days, everyone talks about being too busy. But all this busyness

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These days, everyone talks about being too busy. But all this busyness [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2017, 11:32
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  15% (low)

Question Stats:

84% (00:54) correct 16% (01:19) wrong based on 56 sessions

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These days, everyone talks about being too busy. But all this busyness does not seem to result in things getting done. Just as many tasks are still left uncompleted, phone calls unreturned, and appointments missed as there were in the days before this outbreak of busyness. Therefore, people must not be as busy as they claim.

Which one of the following, if true, would most seriously weaken the conclusion in the passage?

(A) These days, looking busy is a status symbol.
(B) People have to do much more these days than before the so-called outbreak of busyness.
(C) People waste so much time talking about being busy that they fail to get things done.
(D) Just as many things are getting done now as before the so-called outbreak of busyness.
(E) People have more leisure time these days than before the so-called outbreak of busyness.

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Re: These days, everyone talks about being too busy. But all this busyness [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2017, 19:30
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let us simplify the argument --

Just as many tasks are uncompleted, phone calls unreturned ... before "busyness" --> People are not that busy as they claim

This option is based on the fact that "same number" of tasks are uncompleted. From this the author draws the conclusion that people are not that busy. One immediate weakness that we can point out is --
What if people before "busyness" had fewer number of tasks to be completed? I.e. the people today have many more tasks to do. The number of incomplete tasks would then only be a small percentage of the total number of tasks today but a larger proportion of the tasks before "busyness".


We have been asked to weaken the conclusion -- "people are not as busy as they claim". We need an answer option that supports "people are indeed busy".
Let us look at the answer options--

Option A - Incorrect

This actually strengthens the conclusion. If "looking busy" is a status symbol, then people might pretend to be busy even though they really are not busy.

Option B - Correct answer

this agrees with the line of reasoning mentioned above. If people have much more to do, then it is quite natural that few of them would not be completed. But since this "few" is equal to the number of tasks that were incomplete before "busyness" outbreak, we can safely say that people today get many more tasks done. Hence, more busy.

Option C - Incorrect

If people spend a lot of time talking about "being busy", then probably they are not as they busy as they claim to be. Strengthens the conclusion.

Option D - Incorrect

If the number tasks completed is the same (and also the number of tasks that are incomplete), we can safely say that people are not more busy. Strengthens the conclusion.

Option E - Incorrect

Also strengthens the argument.
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Re: These days, everyone talks about being too busy. But all this busyness [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2017, 20:38
CrackVerbalGMAT wrote:
let us simplify the argument --

Just as many tasks are uncompleted, phone calls unreturned ... before "busyness" --> People are not that busy as they claim

This option is based on the fact that "same number" of tasks are uncompleted. From this the author draws the conclusion that people are not that busy. One immediate weakness that we can point out is --
What if people before "busyness" had fewer number of tasks to be completed? I.e. the people today have many more tasks to do. The number of incomplete tasks would then only be a small percentage of the total number of tasks today but a larger proportion of the tasks before "busyness".


We have been asked to weaken the conclusion -- "people are not as busy as they claim". We need an answer option that supports "people are indeed busy".
Let us look at the answer options--

Option A - Incorrect

This actually strengthens the conclusion. If "looking busy" is a status symbol, then people might pretend to be busy even though they really are not busy.

Option B - Correct answer

this agrees with the line of reasoning mentioned above. If people have much more to do, then it is quite natural that few of them would not be completed. But since this "few" is equal to the number of tasks that were incomplete before "busyness" outbreak, we can safely say that people today get many more tasks done. Hence, more busy.

Option C - Incorrect

If people spend a lot of time talking about "being busy", then probably they are not as they busy as they claim to be. Strengthens the conclusion.

Option D - Incorrect

If the number tasks completed is the same (and also the number of tasks that are incomplete), we can safely say that people are not more busy. Strengthens the conclusion.

Option E - Incorrect

Also strengthens the argument.


Awesome Explanation :) CrackVerbalGMAT
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Re: These days, everyone talks about being too busy. But all this busyness   [#permalink] 01 May 2017, 20:38
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