Paragraph Completion- Populists

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Paragraph Completion - Populists

___________________________________________________________. They are allergic to reflection and are naturally kinetic. They despise policy detail, nuance and pauses for thought. The essence of populism is not democracy, but the insistence that there are simple solutions to complex problems – solutions that are withheld from the public by a metropolitan elite of “saboteurs”, “enemies of the people” and consumers of carrot cake.

Choose the option which fits in best in the given blank:

  1. Populists point to tears in the fabric of accepted political wisdom.
  2. Populists are catalysts for political change.
  3. Populists survive by staying in motion.
  4. Populists pit the people against an intransigent elite.

    • Correct Answer
      Choice C

    Detailed Solution

    The paragraph describes populists as "allergic to reflection" and naturally "kinetic". Why kinetic? Because they do not like to pause and think through details. Instead, they simply insist that there are simple solutions to complex problems, and that these solutions are held back from the public by the "elite".

    Now, let us consider the options to see which sentence fits best in the given paragraph.

    Option A states that populists point out the problems in "accepted political wisdom". It is not clear what this accepted wisdom is from the paragraph. Nor does the paragraph describe how populists position themselves against conventional political ideas. So, this is not a good option to start the given paragraph.

    Option B says that populists are catalysts for political change. Now, the paragraph is not about political change brought about by populists. The paragraph only argues that populists insist on simple solutions to complex problems. That populists accelerate change is not the main idea of the paragraph. So, this option too is ruled out.

    According to option C, populists survive by "staying in motion". This relates to the idea of populists being "naturally kinetic" and not pausing for thought. The paragraph argues that populists do not like to reflect; instead of thinking through problems, they facilely insist on simple solutions to problems. Option C fits well in the given paragraph.

    Option D states that populists pit people against an "intransigent" elite. But the paragraph does not build on the idea that populists project the elite as unbending. In fact, the paragraph does not even group the elite as a single unit, but as an assortment: "saboteurs", "enemies of the people" and even "consumers of carrot cake" form the "metropolitan elite". So, D is not a good option to complete the given paragraph.

    Correct Answer: Choice (C)

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