ARG-025

The following appeared in a magazine article about planning for retirement.

"Clearview should be a top choice for anyone seeking a place to retire, because it has spectacular natural beauty and a consistent climate. Another advantage is that housing costs in Clearview have fallen significantly during the past year, and taxes remain lower than those in neighboring towns. Moreover, Clearview's mayor promises many new programs to improve schools, streets, and public services. And best of all, retirees in Clearview can also expect excellent health care as they grow older, since the number of physicians in the area is far greater than the national average."


Write a response in which you discuss what specific evidence is needed to evaluate the argument and explain how the evidence would weaken or strengthen the argument.


In this article about planning for retirement, the author asserts that Clearview is the top choice for people who look for a place to retire. According to the article, Clearview has spectacular natural beauty, consistent climate, declining housing cost and lower tax rate. Moreover, Clearview’s mayor promises new programs to develop schools, streets, and public services. And finally, the physicians number in Clearview is higher than the national average. Thus, the author concludes that Clearview is an excellent place for retirement. Although the description for Clearview sounds attractive, the author’s argument does not sufficiently lead to a sound conclusion given the information that is presented. More evidence is needed to determine whether Clearview is truly ideal for retirement.

In the first place, the author suggests that Clearview is a good place to retire since housing costs in Clearview have fallen significantly during the past year. However, such reduction of housing costs does not infer that it is the lowest compared to other potential places to retire. In order to evaluate this claim, we need evidence that shows whether current housing prices in Clearview are lower than others’ in that area. It is possible that housing costs in Clearview were initially very high, and even after housing costs have fallen significantly, housing costs still remain higher than the average costs of the nation. Therefore, an economy report comparing the housing costs around the area is highly needed. If the report establishes that the housing costs in Clearview is the lowest, then the author’s conclusion will be strengthened. On the contrary, if Clearview’s housing cost is still higher than average, then the decline in housing costs would not effectively help attract more retirees, and the author’s argument would be weakened.

Additionally, the author claims that Clearview is a good choice for retirees, since Clearview's mayor promises many new programs to improve schools, streets, and public services. However, whether or not such promises can be fulfilled remains unproven. To test the validity of this argument, we need evidence to show that the local government will put these words into practice and the conditions after improvement would be suitable for retirees as expected. To settle the confusion, a detailed report of Clearview’s facility conditions and an official document about the program details are recommended. The argument would be bolstered if the report shows that Clearview’s facility conditions are expected to be higher than average once those programs complete and detailed implementing date of programs is given. Otherwise, lacking either of these two evidence, the author’s argument would not be persuasive.


Furthermore, the author suggests that Clearview can provide good health care to retirees, because the number of physicians is far greater than national average. In order to verify this argument, we need evidence about whether these physicians can provide quality service or not, since the absolute number of physicians may not truly reflect the level of healthcare quality. Hence, an opinion survey among retirees in Clearview should be provided. The argument would be weakened if the survey shows that these physicians in this area do not provide good services, such as being not approachable, unfriendly, or impatient when they talk to senior citizens. On the other hand, if the survey reflects that current retirees are satisfied, then the author’s argument would be strengthened.


Finally, another lingering question that needs to be address is the number of physicians per capita in Clearview. The author only cites the higher total numbers of physicians but do not mention the population in Clearview. It is possible that there is a large number of retirees in Clearview already. In this case, despite the higher number of physicians in total, the number of physicians per capita remains low, meaning the average care individual retirees can receive is lower than national average. To test the validity of such argument, we need a job census report to know the population in Clearview. If it turns out that the number of physicians to take care of each retiree is higher than national average, the author’s conclusion would be more valid. In contrast, if it turns out that the number of physicians per capita is still higher than national average, then the author’s argument would lack validity.


In conclusion, while Clearview may have the potential to become a top choice for people to retire, such an endorsement by the author lacks convincing evidence. To fully examine this recommendation, we need evidence pertains to the factors of housing costs, the likelihood of the mayor’s realizing promises and the healthcare quality in Clearview.



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