The passage provides the most support for inferring which one of the following statements?

shafieiava on April 12, 2020

C versus D

Can someone explain why C is incorrect? I can see why D is correct, but I fell into C as a trap answer because I felt that the section that talks about the metropolitan customers gave some support to answer choice C, and that answer choice D was almost “too obvious”/directly supported by the text and wouldn’t count as an “inference” as the question stem puts it. Thanks in advance.

Replies

AndreaK on April 13, 2020

Hi Shafieiava,

For starters, don’t be too hesitant of something because it looks “too obvious.” Too obvious is very often correct on this exam! Though the LSAT is tricky in a lot of ways, it’s not tricky like that. A straightforward and direct answer that is not flawed in some other way is typically best.

I see your hesitation when you say you didn’t think it would count as an inference because it was too direct. However, because an inference question is like a “most strongly supported” or a “must be true,” they are by nature very direct and often very obvious. It’s on harder questions that they become indirect and more difficult to see.

Think of it this way. If I told you all cats are mammals, and that Fluffy is a cat, you are making an inference when you conclude that Fluffy is thus a mammal. I know, that feels like stating the obvious. It doesn’t feel like an inference so much as it just feels like a fact that’s already been given. But, that’s essentially what inferences are! Because I never explicitly stated separately that Fluffy was a mammal (instead it was logically inferred from the fact that Fluffy is a cat and cats are mammals) you know that’s an inference that you deduced from the facts. If the facts are true (that fluffy is a cat), the inference (that Fluffy is a mammal) must also be true.

Likewise, if a CMC requests that fewer than 10 crops be grown (which goes against the recommendation of A LEAST 10 crops in line 15), then you know that recommendation will not be followed. Straightforward as ever, but just as we can deduce that Fluffy is a mammal from the fact that we know Fluffy is a cat, an inference nonetheless.