20.4.26 (Resolve-Reconcile-Explain Questions Problem Set 10)

Accounts PlayableAccounts Playable Alum Sage
I see why A, C,D, and E are incorrect, but I cannot figure out how B doesn't resolve the paradox. Here is the video explanation: http://7sage.com/lsat_explanations/lsat-20-section-4-question-26/

Smoking in bed is the main cause of home fires. Fewer people smoke now than did twenty years ago. But, the number of people killed in home fires hasn't declined.

What I am looking for: What if fewer people smoking decreased smoking related home fires, but another cause increased over that time? What if former smokers substitute smoking for playing with all of their extra matches? Also, there is a difference between people who smoke in bed and smokers in general.

Answer A: This is what I chose, but it is pretty subtle why it is wrong. This is suggesting that smoking related home fires aren't actually deadly, so it's actually not a paradox that the number of deaths didn't decline. It never was a big deal to begin with.

Answer B: If you see what A was doing, then this is the answer you are left with after POE, but I am really struggling to see how this doesn't resolve the paradox. JY is certainty correct in saying that this answer choice presents smoking in bed as a very risky thing: you might fall asleep when the fire starts and die. But, doesn't JY's explanation resolve the paradox? If smoking in bed is an inherently riskier activity, then doesn't it make sense that the number of deaths didn't decline?

Answer C: This definitely resolves the paradox. Just because there are fewer smokers doesn't mean that the right type of smoker has stopped smoking. What if none of those that are most susceptible for starting a fire didn't quit?

Answer D: This addresses the thing that I anticipated. What if another cause of fires increased?

Answer E: This definitely resolves the paradox. If there are more people living together, which can increase the cause of death, then sure, the there hasn't been a decrease in deaths.


  • DumbHollywoodActorDumbHollywoodActor Alum Inactive ⭐
    7468 karma
    Excellent analysis of the question, which is very tricky. I think the reason why B is correct is that it doesn’t account for the clear decline in cigarette smoking. A good RRE answer will account for both parts of the discrepancy.
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