June 2013 LSAT, LR1, Q6, collectible toys

Crowdsourcing the June 2013 LSAT:  June 2013 LSAT Explanation Central | About this project When I met Liz, she already had a 164 on record... a very strong score that she had earned through self-study. But she'd set her sights on Stanford/Berkeley, so she took 12 weeks of LSAT class with me. By the end of class, she was consistently scoring in the low 170s. But then she took the October 2012 LSAT, scoring 168. That's a bummer. She took the test a third time in December of 2012, and scored 169. Bummer^2. And then, she got into Stanford Law. Last cycle, I had a student with a 174 who didn't even apply to Stanford because she thought she had no chance. Lesson: Don't sell yourself short! By improving from a 164 to a 169, Liz crept into Stanford's 25th percentile range, giving herself a legitimate shot. Don't be afraid to retake the test if you need to, and remember that every point really does count.

Guest blogger: Liz Jones

Greetings from Buenos Aires! I finished up a fellowship at an environmental nonprofit organization about a week ago and I'm taking a long vacation with my partner (who is Argentinian) before I head to Stanford to pursue a joint JD / MS in Environmental Resources. This is my first vacation since I got my BA in 2011, so I'm happy to be relaxing in the southern hemisphere.

I've heard from a lot of environmental public interest lawyers that with all of the stress, required courses and the pressure to work at big corporate law jobs, one of the first things that happens when you get to law school is you forget the reason why you came in the first place. I'm spending some time this summer really documenting my values and reasons for wanting to become a lawyer, and what I want out of both the law school experience and my work as a lawyer.

My suggestion to law school applicants is to make sure law is what you want to do by trying out law-related jobs and talking to people in the field (I interned at the NRDC last year and loved it). Then, once you decide to go to law school really do your homework. There are several programs that are geared toward applicants with a strong public interest background (NYU's Root Tilden Kern, UCLA's Epstein, Georgetown's Public Interest Law Scholars, etc), and also realize that not all Loan Repayment Assistance Programs are created equal.

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 It's funny to read an LSAT question after going on a 6-month break from the test. When Nathan sent this question I immediately thought “haven't I seen this before?” It's amazing how the test repeats itself.

One trick I learned in Nathan's class was to cover up the answers and try to guess the answer before looking at the choices. This question, like many, turns out to be easy if you just slow down and make sure you understand what you are reading and make a prediction before you look at the answers.

Here's how I read the prompt: A company wants reclassify its “collectibles” as “toys” so that they don't have to pay as much money to the government. The company says that this is fair because collectibles and toys are both “amusing.” (Seriously, company? ”¦ Why should a country set tariff rates based on how fun customers think the products are?)

The government agency rejects the company's request to reclassify. The government doesn't care if the collectible figurines and toys are equally amusing, they just care that the company uses different “marketing” for the two sets of products. (Again, this seems kind of silly ”¦ Why would a country set tariff rates based on how products are marketed?)

The question asks, Which one of the following principles, if valid, most helps to justify the government agency's decision””the decision that the company can't reclassify its product.

So we need to justify, i.e. prove, the government's silly reasoning. Why can't the company reclassify collectible figurines as toys? I'm looking for something that connects the evidence to the conclusion. Like: Classification must be based on marketing rather than amusement. Or, classification can never be based on amusement. You get the picture.

A. This seems right... it's a lot like what I predicted, and it's definitely a missing piece in the government's argument. I'm going for it unless another answer looks better.

B. Well this is clearly what the company thinks, but it doesn't have anything to do with the government's decision.

C. Nope. The decision is about whether an object should be classified as a toy.

D. Nope. This is what the company says.

E. Nope. This has nothing to do with the government's decision.

Please ask questions and/or suggest corrections to anything that seems confusing... we want to make this the best resource we can for LSAT students. We'll have all the June 2013 explanations up as quickly as possible. Thanks for reading. Tell your friends! --nathan

Crowdsourcing the June 2013 LSAT:  June 2013 LSAT Explanation Central | About this project