Author Topic: Cato's Grammar Grumble  (Read 555402 times)

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Offline owlice

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #760 on: July 30, 2009, 03:52:01 AM »
',

I'd seen that article, which resulted in a comment I made here.

I'd like to see something more than a speculation by a linguist who hasn't studied this at all, though! :)

There are a lot of odd little constructions in various pockets; there are a number of them on the eastern shore of Maryland and other parts of the Delmarva peninsula, for example, or were, anyway, when I was growing up. (I would expect there would be many fewer of them now.) Many of these odd constructions can be traced back to a construction that arose either from another language or earlier English usage. The one Cato pointed out sounds like one such older construction to me; Appalachia came immediately to mind. (And dang; just now looking at a map, I see I-75 cuts right through Appalachia.)

Interesting info here: http://linguistlist.org/issues/5/5-241.html
« Last Edit: July 30, 2009, 06:26:35 AM by owlice »

Offline owlice

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #761 on: July 30, 2009, 03:53:17 AM »
:: pops popcorn ::

:: pulls up a chair to watch the other discussion ::

Offline MishaK

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #762 on: July 30, 2009, 04:04:27 AM »
Florestan,

I take it you were never on the receiving end of a discriminatory society or ever had to prove intent. Good for you. I don't want to derail this thread any further. This is on grammar. The sentence Cato cited had no grammatical issues. Cato's and your issue is clearly with based on a misunderstanding of the entire phenomenon of discrimination as well as the concept of mens rea in law. If you want to discuss this in more depth, I suggest you start a new topic. Though, seeing the intellectual level of this forum in recent days, I have little hope that much good will come of it.

PS: You may want to try this to help you understand unconscious bias: https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/demo/
« Last Edit: July 30, 2009, 04:07:16 AM by O Mensch »

Offline Florestan

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #763 on: July 30, 2009, 04:31:31 AM »
Florestan,

I take it you were never on the receiving end of a discriminatory society or ever had to prove intent. Good for you. I don't want to derail this thread any further. This is on grammar. The sentence Cato cited had no grammatical issues. Cato's and your issue is clearly with based on a misunderstanding of the entire phenomenon of discrimination as well as the concept of mens rea in law. If you want to discuss this in more depth, I suggest you start a new topic. Though, seeing the intellectual level of this forum in recent days, I have little hope that much good will come of it.



Why this thinly veiled ad hominem, I don't know. All I did was asking you to provide examples of testing methodologies, standards and actions that are inherently biased and discriminatory --- and I'm still waiting. I'm sure Cato will not mind a little off topic on his thread.
"Beauty must appeal to the senses, must provide us with immediate enjoyment, must impress us or insinuate itself into us without any effort on our part."

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Offline MishaK

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #764 on: July 30, 2009, 05:03:10 AM »
 ::)

It wasn't a 'veiled ad hominem' against you. Just a statement of disappointment with how political topics get debated around here. I really think this is off topic here.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2009, 07:03:34 AM by O Mensch »

Offline owlice

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #765 on: July 30, 2009, 06:33:39 AM »
',

Well, how annoying! My apologies; I apparently don't know how to create an inline link, either!!  :(

I've fixed it; the post is here: http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,10977.msg339143.html#msg339143

Just the comment about double modals possibly being not double modals, is all; wrote that after I'd read the article to which you'd pointed.

:: offers ' a chair and some popcorn ::

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #766 on: July 30, 2009, 07:24:06 AM »
My quick look summary: this is a "double modal" which some theorize is not really a double modal, but one modal (the first one, "might") acting instead as an adverb.

Now I really have to get out of here; back later!

Right!  I don't agree with the double modal interpretation.   0:)

O Mensch wrote to Florestan:

"This is on grammar. The sentence Cato cited had no grammatical issues. Cato's and your issue is clearly with based on a misunderstanding of the entire phenomenon of discrimination as well as the concept of mens rea in law."

(My emphasis)

The Law often depends on grammar, which is one basis for thinking properly. 

One of the problems of proving racial discrimination is that it borders on thought crime, unless there is some sort of evidence, even indirect or symbolic.   

One could claim that the man who puts his house up for sale a few days after Afro-Americans moved in next door is a racist.  The evidence being the for-sale sign.  If he shows you, however, the transfer order from his company sending him to North Dakota, dated coincidentally 3 days after his new neighbors appeared, your evidence fades away.

To continue: if you on the other hand find his transfer request dated the day after the neighbors showed up, then that could be evidence of racism.

Or maybe not: perhaps he simply decided he wanted to move to Bismarck!   :o 

Again, no evidence = no evidence, not "little" or "hard-to-find" or difficult-to-prove" evidence, which is most probably what the reporter meant.  Imputing racism ipso facto because of skin color leads us to Orwellian thought crime.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #767 on: July 30, 2009, 07:32:48 AM »
Right!  I don't agree with the double modal interpretation.   0:)

I keep "double modal" and "double-jointed" in the same folder  ;)

Offline MishaK

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #768 on: July 30, 2009, 08:12:21 AM »
Right!  I don't agree with the double modal interpretation.   0:)

O Mensch wrote to Florestan:

"This is on grammar. The sentence Cato cited had no grammatical issues. Cato's and your issue is clearly with based on a misunderstanding of the entire phenomenon of discrimination as well as the concept of mens rea in law."

(My emphasis)

The Law often depends on grammar, which is one basis for thinking properly. 

One of the problems of proving racial discrimination is that it borders on thought crime, unless there is some sort of evidence, even indirect or symbolic.   

One could claim that the man who puts his house up for sale a few days after Afro-Americans moved in next door is a racist.  The evidence being the for-sale sign.  If he shows you, however, the transfer order from his company sending him to North Dakota, dated coincidentally 3 days after his new neighbors appeared, your evidence fades away.

To continue: if you on the other hand find his transfer request dated the day after the neighbors showed up, then that could be evidence of racism.

Or maybe not: perhaps he simply decided he wanted to move to Bismarck!   :o 

Again, no evidence = no evidence, not "little" or "hard-to-find" or difficult-to-prove" evidence, which is most probably what the reporter meant.  Imputing racism ipso facto because of skin color leads us to Orwellian thought crime.

No, Cato. No evidence of intent does not mean no evidence of discriminatory effect. There can be policies and practices that were not intended to be discriminatory by their makers, but ended up having a vastly discriminatory effect because certain unconscious biases were not taken into account. It is much easier to prove the discriminatory effect than it is to prove intent, and that doesn't make it a 'thought crime'. E.g. when you have a test that is meant to test mental aptitude, but all the examples are unconsciously taken from a white cultural milieu that could be completely foreign to a non-white, then that will throw off your results and discriminate against otherwise qualified non-whites even if the intent wasn't to discriminate.

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: EWWWW!
« Reply #769 on: September 03, 2009, 03:00:49 AM »
On my list of Grumbles compiled during the last weeks is pronunciation!

You have maybe been noticing the invasion of the Bug-Ugly Syllable "eww" where it does not belong, replacing a clean "oo" sound.  Here in practically perfect Ohio, this is most disconcerting!   :o

I have no problem with "eww" (pronounced by squeezing the nose slightly shut to keep out odiously odiferous aromas) as an 8-year old girl's expression of disgust when she sees a bug or an 8-year old boy.

But I have been hearing local TV people and others pronouncing words e.g. "food" as is it were "lewd" or "feud" but without the "Y" sound after "F", which is the grade I would give this pronunciation!

"You" is becoming "yeww" with puckered sinuses,

Perhaps this is the result of too much PBS viewing, where such mis-speaking is rampant!   0:)  Or perhaps it is the result of all those people leaving California, where this nasty sound originated as part of the snooty Valley Girl patois, where a wrinkled nose of disgust was the proper response to everything that was not found at The GAP.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Egebedieff

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: EWWWW!
« Reply #770 on: September 03, 2009, 04:05:59 AM »
But there is something to be said for the survival of unhomogenized regionalisms.

How do they pronounce orthoepy in Ohio?
'

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: EWWWW!
« Reply #771 on: September 03, 2009, 04:12:50 AM »
But there is something to be said for the survival of unhomogenized regionalisms.

Something, yet not everything.

(And a friend of mine has opened for Todd Rundgren, yes.)

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: EWWWW!
« Reply #772 on: September 03, 2009, 05:50:35 AM »
But there is something to be said for the survival of unhomogenized regionalisms.

How do they pronounce orthoepy in Ohio?
'

With a short "e" and no hidden "W" between the "o" and the "e" !   0:)

Let us now grumble about something linguistiic, which however will take us into the realm of semiotics and then to grumbling about the decline of western civilization.

Near my neighborhood is a large billboard with an ad from Nationwide Children's Hospital.  Yes, the Nationwide that "is on your side" runs the place, and has a nice nationally recognized reputation for its care.

In the largest type possible for a billboard are 3 words, the last all upper-case:




I hesitate to disgust the gentle readership here, but...





...it says: "We Know SNOT!"    >:(

No doubt Nationwide hired an absolute advertising genius to come up with this, and no doubt other managerial geniuses approved the ad!

The idiocy, the moronic crudity of this ad speaks for itself.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: EWWWW!
« Reply #773 on: September 03, 2009, 06:16:40 AM »
Did you really mean that hyphen?
'

Yes, with "upper-case" used an adjective the hyphen is correct.

The word "letters" is understood.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Egebedieff

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble: EWWWW!
« Reply #774 on: September 03, 2009, 06:33:12 AM »
Yes, with "upper-case" used an adjective the hyphen is correct.

The word "letters" is understood.
As long as you are certain. There are other conventions, such as Merriam-Webster's, for the use of uppercase or lowercase as an adjective that would make it one word. Likewise, there are other conventions, such as Garner's and others, that would not place a hyphen in a phrasal adjective unless the phrasal adjective precedes the noun, where, as Garner says, its primary purpose is to prevent miscues. But there are many conventions that I might not be aware of.'
« Last Edit: September 12, 2009, 02:11:53 AM by ' »

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble:Hyphens and Lowphens
« Reply #775 on: September 03, 2009, 07:44:24 AM »
As long as you are certain. There are other conventions, such as Merriam-Webster's, for the use of uppercase or lowercase as an adjective that would make it one word. Likewise, there are other conventions, such as Garner's and others, that would not place a hyphen in a phrasal adjective unless the phrasal adjective precedes the noun, where, as Garner says, its primary purpose is to prevent miscues.
But there are many conventions that I might not be aware of.
'

Right: I think "upper-case" is just easier to read.

"The upper case uses large letters."

vs. 

"Is that supposed to be an upper-case letter?"
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Egebedieff

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble:Hyphens and Lowphens
« Reply #776 on: September 03, 2009, 08:33:48 AM »
Right: I think "upper-case" is just easier to read.

"The upper case uses large letters."

vs. 

"Is that supposed to be an upper-case letter?"

We are each free to do what pleases us when it comes to such matters.
'

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #777 on: September 09, 2009, 12:57:06 AM »

Egebedieff

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #778 on: September 09, 2009, 02:22:45 AM »
Ha! I tend not to hyphenate the words I make up.

[Added edit]

I was curious as to whether Garner (Modern American Usage) addresses this. From his entry on -worthy: "As in the preceding examples [seaworthy vessel, crashworthy minivan, creditworthy loan applicant], the form is almost always closed up with its root, not hyphenated. Only a few newfangled -worthy terms [an article-worthy celebrity] have hyphens."

Gloatworthy?

(I would hyphenate ewww-worthy.)
'
« Last Edit: September 09, 2009, 02:49:36 AM by ' »

Joe Barron

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #779 on: September 09, 2009, 08:03:28 AM »
Ha! I tend not to hyphenate the words I make up.

[Added edit]

I was curious as to whether Garner (Modern American Usage) addresses this. From his entry on -worthy: "As in the preceding examples [seaworthy vessel, crashworthy minivan, creditworthy loan applicant], the form is almost always closed up with its root, not hyphenated. Only a few newfangled -worthy terms [an article-worthy celebrity] have hyphens."

Gloatworthy?

(I would hyphenate ewww-worthy.)

In journalism style, it's an evolutionary continuum. When new constructions arise, they are intiially hyphenated, then run together as they become more common. Here at the paper, we used to make "fund raiser" two words, with "fund-raising" hypehented as an adjective (as in "fund-raising goals"), but separate as a noun ("she is in charge of fund raising'). Now we just say fundraiser and fundraising in all cases. We follow AP style, and they take a while to catch up. I'm still waiting to be able to write "stormwater runoff" with no hyphens. In cases like this, though, it's not a question of right or wrong. It's a question of consistency.

BTW, I think it was Robert MacNeil, in his PBS series on the American language, who pointed out that Phildelphia was the  most important single city in the development of what we think of as the American accent, since it was the first city in the British empire in which people pronunced the r's as the ends of words, saying, e.g., water instead of Wat-ah. I wasn't too clear on the reason, but I think it had to do with the large German population here in the 18th century.