Category Archive: Advice on Logical Reasoning

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Cycle Through Some Lance Armstrong LSAT Flaws

Last week, professional cyclist and hall-of-fame liar Lance Armstrong surprised no one when he admitted to longstanding doping allegations during an interview with a sleeping Oprah Winfrey. What’s to be gained from all this? Well, aside from a healthy dose of schadenfreude, the whole ordeal highlights some commonly-found LSAT flaws. You may have seen the following arguments bandied about in the last few days…

Lance Armstrong wasn’t very forthcoming; he therefore must have even more to hide.

Alright, let’s be honest – that was one of the most softball interviews in recent memory, and Lance didn’t give out much more than broad, sweeping confessions. Does that make it seem like there’s even more lurid details that he’s trying to gloss over? Sure. But it doesn’t have to be the case.

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Family, Fun, and Flaw Questions: How to Best Spend your Christmas Vacation

Congratulations! If you’re reading this, you’re part of the select collection of humans who survived the apocalypse. You must be the best of the best; simply the most resilient and fittest creatures on the planet. It’s time to start repopulating.

Although the dust is beginning to settle, the chaos and torment isn’t over just yet. Unfortunately, another challenging date lies ahead: February 9th. The February LSAT is just about six weeks away, and, like the mighty cockroach, LSAC survived the end of days.

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To Succeed on LSAT Test Day → Learn to Diagram

If you want to have a successful LSAT test day, you need to learn to diagram. There are lots of ways I could say the same thing: Only if you learn to diagram will you succeed on LSAT test day, for example. Or: no one who succeeds on LSAT test day doesn’t learn to diagram.

One of the reasons diagramming is so great is that it lets you get all these statements down to the same logical structure:

Succeed on LSAT test day → Learn to diagram

Conditional statements such as the above are all over the LSAT. Many Logical Reasoning question types are chock full of them. Grouping games, especially the In and Out variety, often have nothing but conditional statements as rules. And conditional rules pop up not at all infrequently in ordering games as well.

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LSAT Flaws I Experienced on My European Vacation

I recently got back from a three-week European vacation, a trip filled with magic and wonderment and standoffish northern Europeans. It’s a land of picturesque fjords, rugged alps, and an abundance of LSAT logical fallacies.

LSAT logical fallacies such as…

Flying on Ryanair – A Composition LSAT Fallacy

Have you ever flown on Ryanair? It’s the Greyhound of the skies, but without the friendly charm. You get a millimeter of legroom, no free food or drinks, and a crew that consists entirely of surly Eastern European teenagers. Ryanair makes United look like Emirates. How do they get away with treating you like human waste? Well, their fares are incredibly cheap; I flew from Dublin to Oslo on Ryanair, an 800-mile trip, for a mere $14. Sounds amazingly inexpensive, right?

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LSAT Fallacy Watch: Mitt Romney and His Taxes

As we’ve discussed before, fallacies aren’t just related to the LSAT. They’re all around us. Every day you can see bad reasoning, whether it be in advertising, in politics, or on the news. Many of these arguments look like they could be right at home in an LSAT Logical Reasoning section. So today we’ll be looking at some of the attacks on Mitt Romney relating to his tax returns, and examining them to determine whether or not they hold any water. Arguments such as…

Romney won’t disclose all of his tax information. He must therefore have something to hide.

INVALID. This is something of an absence-of-evidence fallacy. We know that Romney won’t release his full tax information. Could it be because he has some nefarious tax secrets that he’s hiding? Definitely. He may have used numerous loopholes that would make him look bad, and he doesn’t want the American voters to know about this.

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Geraldo Rivera’s Questionable Reasoning in the Trayvon Martin Case

The much-publicized death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin took an interesting twist when Geraldo Rivera pronounced in an interview on “Fox and Friends” last week that “I think the hoodie is as much responsible for Trayvon Martin‘s death as much as George Zimmerman was.” Later in the interview Rivera also said “Trayvon Martin, God bless him, an innocent kid, a wonderful kid, a box of Skittles in his hands. He didn’t deserve to die. But I bet you money, if he didn’t have that hoodie on, that nutty neighborhood watch guy wouldn’t have responded in that violent and aggressive way.”

Without commenting on the tragedy of Trayvon’s death or the hoodie movement it has spawned across the country and at institutions like Harvard Law School, we at Blueprint were interested in the outrageous errors in reasoning Rivera’s comments displayed. One of the few bright spots in studying for the LSAT is that, if done correctly, it trains you to spot fallacious reasoning. This comes in handy as a law student, a law practitioner, and, in this case, as a media consumer.

Perhaps the journalism standards for someone who hosted episodes such as “My Ex Hired a Hitman to Kill Me”

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Spend the Holiday with Some Presidential LSAT Flaws

It’s Presidents’ Day, which means a day off for the lucky ones among us. Since our business here at Blueprint is the LSAT, it’s also the perfect time to look at some President-related logical fallacies. The official federal holiday is in honor of George Washington’s birthday, but we’ll take a broader look.

Equivocation: Bill Clinton, our 42nd President, famously said, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” Now that we know many of the details of his affair with one Monica Lewinsky, it would be easy to call this statement a fantastic lie. We could also say that President Clinton was simply doing what an LSAT flaw question answer choice might call equivocating with respect to a key term.

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Down! Set! LSAT Logical Fallacies at the Super Bowl! Hike!

Super Bowl XLVI, also known as “Super Bowl Extra Large Six,” is a mere three days away. You have exactly that much time to fly to Las Vegas and lay down your savings on the Giants, the Patriots, the over, the under, or whether or not Madonna kisses Gisele Bündchen during the halftime show.

By this time next week, the big game will be a thing of the past and the February LSAT will once again engulf your concentration. But there’s no reason we can’t tie the two subjects together.

So throw on your jersey, huddle around, and read these five Super Bowl-themed logical fallacies.

HUT! HUT! HIKE!

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Finding LSAT Flaws in Real Wife

Being both an LSAT instructor and a married man can be pretty hard. Trying to use logic with a woman is already hard enough, but a married woman? Think there’ll be fallacies? Brother, you don’t know the half of it.

Take last Friday night. So I’m out with Mike at the bar, and I get home pretty late. So what? I work hard. I deserve a beer or two. Anyway, Deborah’s waiting up, going on and on about missing dinner or some garbage. And as if that wasn’t enough, she starts saying that I’m drunk. Classic temporal fallacy. Sure, I was at the bar, and sure, I maybe had a couple pitchers, but that was at the bar. Just because I was drunk then doesn’t mean I was drunk when I got home. What’s true about the past doesn’t have to be true of the future. And besides, if I were drunk, would I be able to drive myself home? That shut Deborah up.

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Viva Las Vegas: The City of LSAT Flaws

I recently spent a few days in Vegas. What I learned was that, while what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, what happens in Vegas will also cause you to score poorly on the LSAT. Sin City is also the City of LSAT flaws.

VEGAS LSAT FLAW NO. 1: EXCLUSIVITY

While walking down the Strip, I was propositioned by a very nice, and I’m sure completely disease-free, lady of the night. When I politely declined her invitation to do something referred to as the ‘Chicago Slough,’ she questioned my sexual orientation.

No, Felicẻ, there are plenty of reasons I might decline your offer. Maybe I’m in a committed relationship. Maybe you’re just not my type. Maybe I don’t like paying for sex.