Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Why Wouldn't One Simply...?

Ms. McA. does perhaps proof her items, hard as that may be to believe. Unless she's thinks she's being clever by footnoting:

Public schools* used to be the perfect incubators, because there you have large numbers of people with no prior immunity herded together, making disease transmission a near-certainty.

* By which I mean, before you start screaming, "schools attended by members of the public", not the government-run school system.
But the wonderment here is, once one sees that "public" could cause an adverse reaction (due to one's well-known deisre to voucherize the nation's schools, I might add) couldn't one simply use the delete key to take "public" out? Then there'd be no need to throw in the asterisk or type more words.

Oh, & aren't the public schools usually run by publicly elected school boards, not this anonymous, apparently responsible-to-no-one gov't.? Except, of course, for some big cities where power-grubbing mayors take control of the school system.

Last & least on the grammar patrol: If one learns to punctuate in the British style to write for a U. K. ragwebsite, how long does it take one to un-learn it, when one has a job @ the website of an American magazine?


spencer said...

I have not the slightest doubt that she has retained the British grammar tics on purpose, because she thinks it makes her appear smarter and more cultured than she really is.

It's nothing more than affectation, just like almost everything else about her.

Anonymous said...

Exactly. I find it hard to believe that a person would instantly un-learn 30-odd years of education simply by writing occassionaly for a British magazine. It's ridiculously phony and juvenile.

Adam Eli Clem said...

But, if you pronounce "sceptical" as you would "sceptre," you get something that sounds like "septic," which McArdle is.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, but the American practice of punctuation in quotes is lame. The Brits have it right. So I'll spot McGargle this pretension.

spencer said...

Okay, but what about her annoying way of adding the superfluous 'u' to words like "neighborhood?" Pure "look at me"-ism.

M. Bouffant said...

Don't you mean "superfluos," then?