# Question: ABC Salary Decrease

## Comment on ABC Salary Decrease

### I narrowed my choices to C &

I narrowed my choices to C & E and choose E as my final answer. Could you explain a bit more about circular reasoning and the effective/generic meaning of statement E, as i thought that explaining the situation (loosing jobs is worse) and going for cut was the strategy.

### Here's an example of circular

Here's an example of circular reasoning: Everything my mother says is true. I know this because she told me so.

So, when my mother says that everything she says is true, I'm assuming that this is true. Then I use this fact to conclude that everything she says is true.

In the given argument, the conclusion is that the 15% cut makes sense. However, we don't assume this to be true and then use this fact to conclude that the 15% cut makes sense.

### Does the GMAT test circular

Does the GMAT test circular reasoning? Are there any examples you can share with us?

### I've never seen an official

I've never seen an official question in which circular reasoning was employed in the passage, but I have seen circular reasoning as an incorrect answer choice.

### Hi Brent!

Hi Brent!

I found this question particularly difficult.

While I am able to break this complex argument down into it's components i.e. the premise and the conclusion; I am having a hard time generalizing the components.

Could you please provide me with a few tips for generalizing these arguments?

### When trying to determine the

When trying to determine the general structure of a passage, the key is to use generic language. So, for example, if the argument tries to show that penguins are better than seagulls, then your summary should NOT mention penguins or seagulls.

Also, you MUST be sure to summarize the argument to yourself BEFORE checking the answer choices. Otherwise, many of the answer choices will look very attractive.

This question type is probably the hardest CR question type, so it will take a while to master them. Keep working at it!

Cheers, Brent

### Straight question here: What

Straight question here: What is a circular reasoning? Thanks Brent.

### It's when we take part (or

It's when we take part (or all) of the conclusion and use it as a premise.

An example: Joe always tells the truth. I know this because he told me he always tells the truth.

### Hi Brent,

Hi Brent,
I was torn between C and D but picked D because I felt that D, in a way, provided a prediction into the future by saying "reduced salary will place a financial burden on many employees" (which I interpreted as extrapolating the perceived outcome")
and it obviously rejected the alternate approach as indicated.

For me, C was appealing but I felt "Indirectly arrives at the conclusion" wasn't accurate since the conclusion was very clear and obvious in the first line of the argument.

Where did I go wrong? Could you please explain?

### Good question.

Good question.

The proposed plan is to decrease salaries by 15%.
The alternative approach is to do nothing (and eventually go out of business).

Answer choice D says the argument extrapolates the perceived outcome of the proposed plan (15% salary decrease). I'm not sure we can say there's extrapolation in the passage.

That said, one might say the extrapolation involves the financial burden on employees. However, this financial burden on employees isn't used "to CRITICIZE the alternative course of action" (do nothing).
That is, the method of reasoning here isn't "Since employees will be financially burdened by the 15% decrease, we should reject the alternative option of doing nothing."

Going out of business provides grounds to reject the alternative approach (do nothing). So, by rejecting the alternative approach, we indirectly reach the conclusion that the 15% decrease is the way to go.

The conclusion here is reached indirectly, because we first rejected the alternative approach of doing nothing (and eventually go out of business).

Does that help?

Cheers,
Brent

### Hello! Why A and not E is the

Hello! Why A and not E is the right answer?

Some theorists and critics insist that no aesthetic evaluation of a work of art is sound if it is based even in part on data about the cultural background of the artist. This opinion is clearly false. The only sound aesthetic evaluations of artists’ works are those that take into account factors such as the era and the place of the artists’ births, their upbringing and education, and the values of their societies—in sum, those factors that are part of their cultural background.

The above argument is most vulnerable to which of the following objections?

A. The argument presupposes the conclusion for which it purports to provide evidence.
B. The argument cites evidence that undermines rather than supports the conclusion.
C. The argument draws its conclusion by means of an equivocal interpretation of key terms.
D. The argument assumes that the production of an effect is evidence of an intention to produce that effect.
E. The argument assumes that evaluative disputes can be resolved by citing factual evidence.

### Argument summary:

Argument summary:
Some say it's WRONG to consider an artist's cultural background.
This opinion is false.
You SHOULD consider and artist's cultural background.

As you can see, this isn't much of an argument.
Notice that the conclusion (this opinion is false) and the reason for the conclusion (You SHOULD consider and artist's cultural background) are basically the same. In fact, they're pretty much interchangeable.

We could say: if the opinion is false, then we SHOULD consider and artist's cultural background.
We could also say: If we SHOULD consider and artist's cultural background, then the opinion is false.

A fancy way of describing this method of reasoning is to say the argument presupposes the conclusion for which it purports to provide evidence (aka answer choice A)

(E) The argument assumes that evaluative disputes can be resolved by citing factual evidence.
No factual evidence is used to resolve the dispute. The author simply states that the opposite is true (without providing any additional evidence).

### Hello! Why C is the right

Hello! Why C is the right choice? I chose D.

The quality of unrefined olive oil is not actually defined in terms of acidity, yet extensive tests have shown that the less free oleic acid an unrefined olive oil contains per liter, the higher its quality. The proportion of free oleic acid that an olive oil contains is an accurate measure of the oil's acidity.

If the statements above are all true, which of the following conclusions is best supported by them?

A. When an olive oil is refined, the concentration of oleic acid in the oil is reduced.
B. The quality of an unrefined olive oil can be determined only by accurately measuring its acidity.
C. If an unrefined olive oil is intermediate in acidity between two other unrefined olive oils, it will also be intermediate between them in quality.
D. Free oleic acid is the only acid that unrefined olive oil contains.
E. People who judge the quality of unrefined olive oils actually judge those oils by their acidity, which the judges can taste.

### The first sentence describes

The first sentence describes the link between free oleic acid and quality: Less free oleic acid means higher quality.
We can also say: MORE free oleic acid means LOWER quality.

The second sentence describes the link between free oleic acid and acidity: MORE free oleic acid means HIGHER acidity.

We can COMBINE both results to conclude that: the higher the acidity, the lower the quality

(C) If an unrefined olive oil is intermediate in acidity between two other unrefined olive oils, it will also be intermediate between them in quality.
This makes perfect sense.
If the acidity of oil X is BETWEEN the acidity of two other oils, then it must also be the case that the quality of oil X is be BETWEEN the quality of the other two oils.

(D) Free oleic acid is the only acid that unrefined olive oil contains.
There's nothing in the past to suggest this MUST be true. All we know for certain is that unrefined olive oil contains oleic acid, but we can't conclude that this is the only acid it contains.