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In each of the past five years, Barraland’s prison populat

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In each of the past five years, Barraland’s prison populat

Post Wed Sep 20, 2017 5:50 pm
In each of the past five years, Barraland’s prison population has increased. Yet, according to official government statistics, for none of those years has there been either an increase in the number of criminal cases brought to trial, or an increase in the rate at which convictions have been obtained. Clearly, therefore, the percentage of people convicted of crimes who are being given prison sentences is on the increase.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

a) In Barraland the range of punishments that can be imposed instead of a prison sentence is wide.

b) Over the last ten years, overcrowding in the prisons of Barraland has essentially been eliminated as a result of an ambitious program of prison construction.

c) Ten years ago, Barraland reformed its criminal justice system, imposing longer minimum sentences for those crimes for which a prison sentence had long been mandatory.

d) Barraland has been supervising convicts on parole more closely in recent years, with the result that parole violations have become significantly less frequent.

e)The number of people in Barraland who feel that crime is on the increase is significantly greater now than it was five years ago.

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Post Sun Sep 24, 2017 3:23 am
richachampion wrote:
In each of the past five years, Barraland’s prison population has increased. Yet, according to official government statistics, for none of those years has there been either an increase in the number of criminal cases brought to trial, or an increase in the rate at which convictions have been obtained. Clearly, therefore, the percentage of people convicted of crimes who are being given prison sentences is on the increase.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

a) In Barraland the range of punishments that can be imposed instead of a prison sentence is wide.

b) Over the last ten years, overcrowding in the prisons of Barraland has essentially been eliminated as a result of an ambitious program of prison construction.

c) Ten years ago, Barraland reformed its criminal justice system, imposing longer minimum sentences for those crimes for which a prison sentence had long been mandatory.

d) Barraland has been supervising convicts on parole more closely in recent years, with the result that parole violations have become significantly less frequent.

e)The number of people in Barraland who feel that crime is on the increase is significantly greater now than it was five years ago.
Premise:
Barraland’s prison population has increased.
Conclusion:
Clearly, the percentage of people convicted of crimes who are being given prison sentences is on the increase.

The assumption is that there is NO OTHER POSSIBLE EXPLANATION for the increase in the prison population.
To weaken the conclusion, the correct answer will offer an alternate explanation.

C: Ten years ago, Barraland reformed its criminal justice system, imposing longer minimum sentences for those crimes for which a prison sentence had long been mandatory.
Here, criminals are being LONGER PRISON SENTENCES, providing an alternate explanation for the increase in the prison population and WEAKENING the conclusion that the percentage of people convicted of crimes who are being given prison sentences is on the increase.

The correct answer is C.

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richachampion Legendary Member
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Top Reply
Post Wed Sep 20, 2017 5:52 pm
This is from one of the exams packs.

OA: C

It is a good question for the discussion.

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