A tax preparation company automatically adds the following disclaimer to every e-mail message sent to its clients: "A...

Sean on October 30, 2018

PT 76, S2, Q22

Can you please break this question down? I'm having trouble understand have A completes the argument. Thank you!

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Jacob on October 31, 2018

Hi @smilde11,

I’m happy to help. As always, let’s start with the question stem. We are looking for an answer that lets us properly draw the argument’s conclusion if we assume the truth of that answer.

The ultimate conclusion of the passage is that the disclaimer serves no purpose, given everything else in the passage. How did we get there? Let’s look at each premise and logical leap and see if we can spot anything fishy.

The first sentence is just information about the disclaimer. No argument or logical leaps there.

The next sentence is an assertion: that the only purpose that the disclaimer could serve is to provide legal protection for the company. Seems ok so far.

The third sentence gives us a mini logical reasoning statement. Notice the if/then assertion? IF the email elsewhere suggests do something illegal, THEN the disclaimer offers no legal protection. Still no leaps in reasoning so far.

But now we’re at the conclusion: the disclaimer serves NO purpose. Woah! Notice the logical jump? The only information we had so far about the circumstance when the disclaimer offers no protection was the if/then statement of when the email elsewhere suggests to do something illegal. But that is it! What about the circumstances when the email does not suggest to do something illegal? We don’t have information about that situation, and whether the disclaimer offers some protection then. And therefore we can’t for sure say that the disclaimer serves NO purpose.

...but that is exactly what answer A gives us. It says that even if the email does not elsewhere suggest illegality, then the company doesn’t need protection. And so now we can be sure that the conclusion is true in either scenario, and thus it is valid.

I hope this helps! Please let us know if you have further questions.