A large shareholder of ElectroRail Company created a media frenzy when he claimed that the company is mismanaged, citing evidence that the company failed to ship as many cargo units as it did last year. It is doubtful whether any verbal complaints brought on by large shareholders can ever be anything but counterproductive, but in this case it is clearly not justified. It is true that a drop in units shipped often indicates slowing business, but in ElectroRail's case it indicates no such thing. Rather, the average revenue per cargo unit doubled as each cargo unit shipped more valuable items and overall business actually increased.
In the argument given, the two boldfaced portions play which of the following roles?