Month: October 2008

Bring Back the Copyeditors and Proofreaders

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Leaving aside the question of the blatant liberal bias and news manipulation of the newspaper, the Los Angeles Times really needs to consider rehiring all the proofreaders and copyeditors it laid off to save money.

Here’s a setnece I read today in the Business section: "Chrysler is closing the plant because sales of the non-hybrid versions of the SUVs have been selling poorly."

Sales…have been selling poorly?  A copyeditor easily could have changed that to "moving slowly" to remove the redundancy and idiocy of the construction "sales…selling poorly."

Categories: Grammar Sucks

Department of Too Little, Too Late

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Let’s see.  AIG (American International Group) was unable to cover the insurance it issued on mortgage securities and other speculative financial instruments, so the U.S. government (read: we taxpayers) had to pony up $90 so the company could settle its insurance claims and remain in existence.

We’ve probably all heard about the lavish retreats AIG held after the bailout.  Now, today I read this headline in the Los Angeles Times: "AIG to freeze some exec pay."

How about making them pay back the bonuses they got for all that uncoverable (read: bogus) insurance they sold?

Categories: Grammar Sucks

Required Reading for Our Times: ‘The Great Crash 1929’

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Though if I were to agree with an economist most times and overall, it would be Milton Friedman, on the advice of Mad Money host Jim Cramer, I just read The Great Crash 1929 by economist John Kenneth Galbraith.

I’m not one to read books about the dismal science in general, but Cramer’s advice definitely was timely, so after reading it, I too am recommending Galbraith’s book unhesitatingly.  It’s a great read and highly enlightening.

Great Crash is written in a common-sense, common-person’s style that makes it a quick, engaging read.  (I finished it off in about three hours or less.)  However, you may want to look up the definitions of these words before reading it: usufruct, eupeptic and parthenogenesis.  Otherwise, you’ll encounter clear, concise, simple writing.

I must confess that, after reading Great Crash, I now have a more liberal leaning on governmental intervention in the economy, as Galbraith makes it clear that easy steps could’ve been taken to ameliorate and end the Great Depression possibly while it was in its early stages.  (Hint: Don’t balance the budget and keep money flowing.)

I found this passage on the next-to-last page of the book most illuminating for our current crisis:

"…it would be unwise to expose the economy to the shock of another major speculative collapse.  Some the new reinforcements might buckle.  Fissures might appear at other new and perhaps unexpected places.  Even the quick withdrawal from the economy of the spending that comes from stock market gains might be damaging."


Categories: Grammar Sucks

‘Jewel of Medina’ Doesn’t Reach Star Quality

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Editor’s Note: Beaufort Books is the same firm that published O.J. Simpson’s "If" book, and The Jewel of Medina has been largely panned as featuring little more than second-class romance novel writing.

By Fred Burton and Scott Stewart
Reprinted courtesy of STRATEGIC FORECASTING

“The Jewel of Medina,” a controversial work of historical fiction by American author Sherry Jones, was supposed to have gone on sale Oct. 15 in the United Kingdom. A series of events, however, have delayed its British release indefinitely. The book, which went on sale in the United States on Oct. 6, describes the life of Aisha, the young girl who became the Prophet Mohammed’s third — and according to many sources, favorite — wife
Some Muslims have labeled the book blasphemous and have branded the author an enemy of Islam. An associate professor of Islamic history at the University of Texas at Austin said Muslims would find the book very offensive and, in an August interview in The Wall Street Journal, likened it to soft-core pornography.
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Categories: Grammar Sucks