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It can reasonably be concluded from the passage that in the author’s opinion, scientific research today is chiefly impaired by the

A D. operation of economic forces potentially hostile to the common good

Choice D is the best answer. The author contends that patronage of science “generally extracts a price” and that “in the case of science today . . . that pressure comes less as a consequence of political correctness than of economic forces that have shifted academic and scientific institutions to a corporate model not designed to prioritize public interests” and hence potentially hostile to the common good. The author concludes that “it is money far more than ideology that rules the day” in contemporary science. Choice A is incorrect because the author depicts the academic institutions with which scientists are affiliated as subject to larger “economic forces” that have shifted these institutions to “a corporate model.” Choice B is incorrect because there is no evidence in the passage that the author considers the overabundance of information available to scientists in the Internet age as the chief impairment of scientific research today or even that she sees information as overabundant. Choice C is incorrect because the idea that pressure on scientists to make their outcomes socially acceptable (“political correctness,” “ideology”) is the chief impairment of scientific research today is attributed to Alice Dreger, not to the author herself, who argues a different position “despite Dreger’s argument.”