QUESTION TEXT: The local news media have long heralded…
QUESTION TYPE: Identify the Conclusion
CONCLUSION: The Clemens scandal is an example of how the the media is too nice to public figures.
REASONING: The media thought Clemens was honest. As such they didn’t bother investigating him. It turns out that Clemens was dishonest.
ANALYSIS: The gist of the argument is that the media is too deferential to public figures like Clemens. Clemens isn’t the point – he is just an example demonstrating this point about the media. Note that the third sentence says “This [Clemens’ corruption] demonstrates”. Media failure is the real point of the argument.
Ideally, you should be able to figure that out just from reading it. That’s the end goal of your LSAT studies: to figure out conclusions intuitively. But if you’re still having trouble, I’ve identified some words below that indicate conclusions and evidence.
“This demonstrates” indicates that the sentence is a conclusion and the previous sentence supports it.
“Even….admitted” indicates that the sentence is evidence, supporting the conclusion in the previous sentence. Here, “even” shows that someone we would expect to object (the newspaper editor) agrees with the author.
- This fact supports the conclusion. Clemens was not honest, so the fact that the media portrayed him as honest shows the media is too deferential.
- This is true, and a very tempting answer. But the point is that Clemens’ case demonstrates how the media are too deferential. The scandal is just evidence showing the excess deference.
- CORRECT. The point of the argument is that Clemens’ case demonstrates this fact.
- This is just evidence supporting the conclusion that the media is too deferential.
- The argument said the local media is too deferential. But this answer only talks about how the local newspaper treats public figures. The media is bigger than the newspaper.
Also the conclusion is not just that Clemens’ case is typical. It’s that Clemens’ case shows excess deference.
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Graeme teaches how to break down arguments, quickly