Thursday, May 28, 2009

AWA - Argument 1

I tok 31 and not 30 minutes to finish this.
I feel this could have been improved in terms of organization.
I wish I Could write 4 paras and not 3
I wanted to bring out the flaw in saying 25 yrs wasn't enough to gain experienc.
Din't do that, lost time.

Following are the points that the test asked and I followed
Analyse the reasoning and use of evidence - I did by citing the wrong comparision of diff. industries
Assumptions - I discussed
Alternative explanation to improve the argument - Last para

Couldn't do
Couldn't evaluate its conclusion clearly

The following appeared as part of an annual report sent to stockholders by Olympic Foods , a processer of frozen foods:
"Over time,the costs of processing go down because as organizations learn how to do things better,they become more efficient. In color film processing, for example, the cost of a 3X5 print fell from 50 cents for 5 day service in 1970 to 20 cents for 1 day service in 1984. The same principle applies to the processing of food. And since Olympic Foods will soon celebrate its 25th birthday, we can expect that our long experience will enable us to minimize the costs and thus maximizing profits."

The argument "over time, with experience, the processing costs will come down owing to a company's learning of better techniques and thus increase profits" is limited by its failure to consider various factors,other than experience, contributing in improving the company's profits. In addition it misleads the audience by trying to convince them that the same business rules and markets prevail in film processing and food processing industires;which is as good as comparing apples with oranges.

Our argument is further falwed by the assumptions it makes when citing the above mentioned points.First it assumes that profits can be maximized by reducing processing costs. It fails to consider other ways of achieving good profits. Profits can be improved not just be reducing processing costs but also by minimizing other costs, to name a few ,associated with inventory and labour management. Second it assumes that the cost reduction in film processing can be replicated in food processing. It fails to understand that these are two different industries. In addition it fails to understand that there might have been technological advances in the film processing area that would have enabled this cited cost reduction and wrongly assumes that experience of the film processing industries reduced their costs.

The argument can become more sound if it provides more information or evidence that can refute the above mentioned flaws.For instance , if it can provide company expenditure details and prove that the major costs associated with the company are those in the area of processing alone, it can justify it's concentration on those costs alone. Also, if it can show the improvement in the company's profits with each 10 year or 5 year period, it would make sense in saying that experience tends to improve the profitability of the company.

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