QUESTION TYPE: Necessary Assumption
CONCLUSION: Political shows are not bland and innocuous because of some political agenda.
REASONING: Television stations are driven by economic forces. They air shows that will appeal to large numbers of people.
ANALYSIS: Economic forces are a possible explanation but this argument is not rock-solid. Do people really want to watch bland and innocuous shows? And will people turn off all arguments they disagree with?
Questions four and five are rare in that both questions are necessary assumption questions.
- The argument doesn’t claim that executives have no agenda. But it points out that TV stations program according to what will brings them profits and not based on agendas.
- CORRECT. If this isn’t true, then it’s hard to see why bland and innocuous programs are included. It isn’t because they will draw good ratings, since the shows are not mainstream if this assumption is not true.
- Whether or not this is true it would still be easy to exclude non-mainstream analysts.
- If less than half of viewers are prepared to argue against allowing content they disagree with then how does that affect the argument? The TV execs will still program based on how many people will watch the shows.
- This wouldn’t hurt the argument if the TV station executives have mainstream attitudes. Their attitudes would be reflected but ratings could still be the main reason that mainstream shows are produced.
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