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Q. It is widely assumed that pregnancy and motherhood turn women into sieve-brained shadows of their former selves: the condition called "mummy brain" or "baby brain" is a familiar staple of popular culture. But when Tombeau Cost started digging through the scientific literature, she found little evidence to support it. Indeed, she found evidence to the contrary- at least in rats, ___________________________.

Which of the following best completes the passage above?

A. which become mentally sharper after giving birth.

B. which show few signs of mental slowdown after giving birth.

C. which show no signs of mental slackness after giving birth.

D. which enter a state of delirium after giving birth.

The answer is A. The transition word 'but' indicates that the widely held assumption of pregnancy leading to becoming sieve-brained may not hold true after all. We are in fact told that there is "little evidence to support it". Then we are left with "she found evidence to the contrary- at least in rats....."

2 Answers

Hi Sir, 
Please explain the answer to the below question. P.S- I marked the answer as choice "E" but seems that it is an incorrect choice and I could not get any satisfactory explanation on GMAT forum. 

Which of the following best completes the passage below?

One tax-reform proposal that has gained increasing support in recent years is the flat tax, which would impose a uniform tax rate on incomes at every level. Opponents of the flat tax say that a progressive tax system, which levies a higher rate of taxes on higher-income taxpayers, is fairer, placing the greater burden on those better able to bear it. However, the present crazy quilt of tax deductions, exemptions, credits, and loopholes benefits primarily the high-income taxpayer, who is consequently able to reduce his or her effective tax rate, often to a level below that paid by the lower-income taxpayer. Therefore, ______

(A) higher-income taxpayers are likely to lend their support to the flat-tax proposal now being considered by Congress

(B) a flat-tax system that allowed no deductions or exemptions would substantially increase actual government revenues

(C) the lower-income taxpayer might well be penalized by the institution of a flat-tax system in this country

(D) the progressive nature of our present tax system is more illusory than real

(E) the flat tax would actually be fairer to the lower-income taxpayer than any progressive tax system could be

sir, could you please respond to this question?

Hi Richa,

The argument is a case for bringing in the flat tax system. The author starts by introducing the system and mentioning increasing support for it. He then provides an opposing viewpoint to it (the progressive tax system). But it seems he does this only to be able to weaken the contradictory viewpoint as he immediately pinpoints a large loophole in the extant progressive tax system. The concluding sentence (starting with "Therefore"), which is the missing one, will be a wrap-up or synopsis of how the flat tax system is better by either stating benefits of the flat tax system, or drawbacks of the current progressive tax system, in relation to facts already mentioned in the paragraph.  


Option E. is presumptive- it cannot be said with certainty that any form of the progressive tax system would be less fair to the lower-income taxpayer than the flat tax system. There is not enough information to support this claim. After all, even removing the tax deductions, exemptions, credits, and loopholes as present in the system could make the progressive tax system as fair, or more fair, than the flat tax system.


Option D. works best as a concluding sentence. It is an opinion that supports the bringing in of a flat tax system, by removing the present progressive tax system.

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please provide the solutions and explanations for questions 582 and 583. 

For 582 answer should be OPTION (c)


Question 583 is not visible completely

582. Look at the facts given. Not much has been given in terms of information on the text's authenticity. Hence, if we are to believe the last statement, it can be true assuming that- the information given about the text is correct. Hence C.