GMAT CR: “Weaken” Problem of the Day!

Try your hand at a weaken question, and keep your CR skills strong with this problem of the day!

Are you still reading the other newspaper in town? Did you know that the Daily Bugle is owned by an out-of-town business syndicate that couldn’t care less about the people of Gotham City? Read the Daily Clarion, the only real voice of the people of Gotham City!

Which of the following most directly refutes the argument raised in the advertisement above?

(A) Over half of the advertising revenues of the Daily Clarion come from firms whose headquarters are located outside of Gotham City.
(B) The Daily Clarion usually devotes more of its pages to out-of-town news than does the Daily Bugle.
(C) Nearly 40 percent of the readers of the Daily Clarion reside outside the limits of Gotham City.
(D) The editor-in-chief and all the other members of the editorial staff of the Daily Bugle have lived and worked in Gotham City for ten years or more.
(E) The Daily Bugle has been published in Gotham City for a longer time than has the Daily Clarion.

Let’s break down this argument!

Conclusion: Daily Clarion = real voice of the people

Evidence: Daily Bugle is owned by a syndicate

Assumptions: (1) that the syndicate not caring about the people = not a real voice, and (2) somehow that the Daily Bugle being not a real voice automatically means the Daily Clarion IS the real voice

The question asks which REFUTES the argument, so we need a choice that WEAKENS the Daily Clarion. Meaning the Clarion is NOT the real voice, or that the Daily Bugle is still the “real voice” even though it is syndicate-owned.

(A) This just refers to advertising, not ownership. Incorrect.
(B) This DOES weaken because it shows the Daily Clarion isn’t covering the local news as much, but remember the argument’s FOCUS is on the Daily Bugle’s inadequacy (go back to our assumptions!) Incorrect.
(C) The readers are irrelevant – we want to focus on what’s being covered/published. Incorrect.
(D) This DOES weaken because it shows the Daily Bugle staff live in Gotham and are therefore “of the people.” Correct!
(E) The time published is irrelevant.

Between (B) and (D), I returned to our assumptions. We can see that (D) is the strongest refutation, and the correct answer.