2 since he spent two years in venezuela and is a

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2. Since he spent two years in Venezuela and is a consultant in “numerous developing countries,” we think Pierce would be a credible source for (a). Since he was in Venezuela soon after the Cuban revolution, we think he’d be a good source on the immediate effects on that country and possibly the surrounding region for topic (b). We’d sooner trust a plumber for (c). Surely on some technologies Pierce would be an expert regarding (d), but whether, for example, he’d know about current use of computers in Latin America is something his IM – 4 | 5
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biography doesn’t tell us. We’d expect Pierce to have some knowledge concerning (e), but his company’s involvement in the pipeline is likely to produce some bias in his opinions. Unless we had reason to think Pierce was unbiased, we would prefer a neutral party’s opinion, all things considered. We’d rate Pierce a very credible source with regard to (f). On the other hand, there is no reason to think Pierce is especially qualified regarding (g). Exercise 4-15 ▲1. We’d accept this as probably true—but probably only approximately true. It’s difficult to be precise about such matters; Campbell will most likely lay off about 650 workers, including about 175 at its headquarters. 2. We’re pretty sure Ms. Haskew didn’t teach paganism and devil worship in her fourth-grade classroom. Whether she even mentioned it is probably arguable, at least from what little is provided here. Given the quotation from one of the parents who opposed Haskew, we expect the problem was that she tried to teach her students anything at all. 3. Almost certainly true. We’d expect Mr. May to have done his homework. 4. Further information is necessary for this one (and it is probably not forthcoming). We hope reasonable people can take different positions on this issue, because the authors of this book do. One thinks the claim is much more likely to be true than not; the other thinks there’s no more evidence to believe it true than to believe it false. 5. We think this is probably true. Notice the difference between the issue here—which has to do with the purpose of the commission—and the one in the previous item. 6. Probably false, at least as it’s written here. 7. Probably false ▲8. Probably true 9. Probably true 10. Probably true 11. That the British manufacturer of Monopoly made the claim about the items being smuggled in Monopoly sets is very likely true. There is also a good chance that the items were actually smuggled, although we’re much less willing to bet on it. ▲12. No doubt cats that live indoors do tend to live longer than cats that are subject to the perils of outdoor life. If statistics on how much longer indoor cats live on the average were available, we’d expect the manufacturer to know them. But we suspect that such statistics would be difficult to establish (and probably not worth the effort), and we therefore have little confidence in the statistic cited here.
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