LSAT Kung Fu Forum / June 2007 Sec. 3 #17

June 2007 Sec. 3 #17

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hornswaggle's picture
June 2007 Sec. 3 #17

I have a few questions about... this question.

The stem contains two sentences that appear to have conditional logic:

1) In order to have a healthy back, it is important to exercise both sides equally (HB->Exercise!)
2) In order to have a healthy back, you need balanced muscle development (HB->BMD),

It argues that HB->Exercise! because HB->BMD.

My first question: is 1) a strict conditional relationship? Or does the qualifier "important" make it not so?

I picked B) because it was the only answer choice that addressed the gap between Exercise! and balanced muscle development. It states that without Exercise!, you tend to not have bmd.

My second question: what would the answer look like if this were a sufficient assumption question? Would it be "without Exercise!, you cannot have bmd?" Or, would "If you exercise!, you will have bmd?" be valid as well?

I greatly appreciate any help you can provide.

majorgeneraldave's picture

First, excellent work with your thinking in picking (B). Hold onto that; there will be some questions where you won't be certain, but picking this way will get you the right result anyhow.

Second, you've nailed it with the "important". It's just not the same as necessary, so we don't have a truly conditional relationship (though conditional symbolization may be useful nevertheless. Here are more thoughts on that). Consider this proposition: In order to do your best on test day, it's important to get a good night's sleep. We know that this is true, and also that it does not mean that you can't do your best if you don't get a good night's sleep. You won't be as happy maybe, but just because it's important doesn't mean it's essential (consider also that we allow for relative degrees of importance - kinda important, awfully important, generally important, etc. There are no degrees of needed; you either need something or else you don't).
Third, again, it is as you've said. The sufficient assumption version would tell us that Exercise! is necessary for bmd. However, your second iteration posits Exercise! as sufficient, though, and it would therefore not correctly complete the argument.
Nice work,
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