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Question
QuickView
Choices
Curve Question
Difficulty
Psg/Game/S
Difficulty
Explanation
PT64 S1 Q16
+LR
Flaw or descriptive weakening +Flaw
A
70%
166
B
3%
157
C
21%
161
D
2%
154
E
4%
158
146
156
165
+Harder 147.067 +SubsectionMedium

This is a pretty tough question. Hopefully, you're well trained by now to always separate premises from conclusions.

This passage makes you work for it. The first sentence is a premise:

selfish --> /gov't by consent

The second sentence contains a conclusion followed by "since" and another premise:

/gov't by consent --> /democracy

Forget the conclusion for now. Let's just piece together the premises.

selfish --> /gov't by consent --> /democracy

What conclusion can you validly draw? This one:

selfish --> /democracy

What conclusion do they draw?

B(selfish) --> B(/democracy)

Sort of. They make a small assumption [/democracy --> futile to aspire to democracy]. Anyway, this is a tiny assumption and reasonable too, so let's concede this point.

Besides, they committed a huge logical error.

If I tell you that Tommy is 3 years old and just formed a new belief that this delicious object he's eating is called "banana". Can you conclude that Tommy believes that this object is a fruit? That's reasonable isn't it since banana --> fruit?

Well, that depends on whether Tommy knows that conditional relationship holds. Tommy just learned "banana". Who knows if he understands that "banana" is a sub-set of this other thing called "fruit".

Now imagine things more complex than "banana" and "fruit" and you'll see that this applies to all of us. We don't know all the logical relationships that exist. X --> Y may be true, but if we are unaware of that truth, our knowing X doesn't imply our knowing Y.

Anyway, this is not the first time that you've seen this exact error on the LSAT. Plenty of questions before this one committed similar errors.