Ms. Sandstrom's newspaper column describing a strange natural phenomenon on the Mendels' farm led many people to tres...

Meredith on November 7 at 10:14PM

Choice A

I chose A but I thought it was too easy to pick because it is simply restating the principle that the farm family uses in its conclusion. Also, since it is not explicitly stated in the passage nor choice A that the writer did “reasonably expect” how can you go with A? Wouldn’t you need something like choice E invoking such a sufficient condition as “reasonably expected” in order for the the conclusion to follow?

1 Reply

Irina on November 7 at 10:51PM

@Meredith,

This is a sufficient assumption question. For these types of questions, the correct answer choice guarantees the truth of the conclusion and it is common for an answer to be fairly obvious because it typically involves elements present in the conclusion but not in the premises.

The conclusion here is conditional - Ms. Sandstrom should pay if she could have reasonably believed that the column would lead people to damage the farm, the conclusion is not saying she should definitely pay. If the conclusion did definitely argue that she has to pay, then your comment would make sense - (A) alone would be insufficient to argue for compensation without further proof that she could have reasonably expected the damages. But since the conclusion is conditional, (A) is sufficient and If (A) is true and one should pay for damage that one could have reasonably expected to occur, the conclusion follows logically.

The issue with (E) is that what Mendels believe is irrelevant. The conclusion says if Ms. Sandstrom could have reasonably expected then she should pay, essentially applying a "reasonable person" standard, what would we expect a reasonable person to expect rather than looking at Mendels' opinion.