Not Even the English Can Write the Queen’s English Any More

Filed under:Language Barrier,Need a Good Editor? — posted by Anwyn on November 22, 2008 @ 8:22 pm


Its turns out that Mrs Clinton’s delay in accepting the president elect’s offer to be his top foreign policy adviser had much to do with her negotiating the terms of the job and insisting on the right to choose her own state department staff and possibly even some of the plumb Ambassador postings.

and this:

Obama will have in his gift the right to appoint Supreme Court justices, possibly as many as five out of the nine: Roe v Wade, which gives a woman the right to an abortion if she chooses, would be safe.

Assignments and posts are plum, as in the good stuff in plum-cake, not plumb, as in straight. And the appointments themselves are what the president can give, not “the right” to appoint. He appoints them himself; he doesn’t gift that right to anybody else.

An Englishman of my acquaintance refers to two languages: English and “an American derivative.” His English appears to be slowly dying on the pages of his own country’s papers.

Links via, where else, Hot Air.

And To Think I Was Worried About Filling In My Ovals Right Up to the Line, but Not a Jot Outside

Filed under:Good Grief,Politics — posted by Anwyn on November 20, 2008 @ 3:21 pm

Stupid people/people with authority issues/stupid people vote.

Via Hot Air.

People Are Whos, Not Whats

Filed under:Language Barrier — posted by Anwyn on November 19, 2008 @ 2:11 pm

Been going on a long time, this abuse has, and shows no signs of slowing down. I see it in print, in emails, in marketing materials; hear it on TV; hear it in conversation: “People that want to attend …” “A person that went to the party said …” “The youth that went on the trip …”

STOP IT. People are people WHO do things. They are not objects THAT do things. The people who want to attend are people who will not be happy to say that the youth who went on the trip were objectified in the last issue of the newsletter. The team that won, however, or the company that weathered the downturn are all right, even though the team whose mascot was banned or the company whose stock went down are pretty huffy that teams and companies can be both whos and whats. People are not bi-statist. They are always and forever Whos. Don’t grinch them into Whats.

Don’tcha Wish Romney Had Been the Nominee?

Filed under:Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on November 18, 2008 @ 9:29 pm

Tough love for Detroit from one of its sons.

First, their huge disadvantage in costs relative to foreign brands must be eliminated. … That extra burden is estimated to be more than $2,000 per car. Think what that means: Ford, for example, needs to cut $2,000 worth of features and quality out of its Taurus to compete with Toyota’s Avalon. Of course the Avalon feels like a better product — it has $2,000 more put into it. Considering this disadvantage, Detroit has done a remarkable job of designing and engineering its cars. But if this cost penalty persists, any bailout will only delay the inevitable.

The new management must work with labor leaders to see that the enmity between labor and management comes to an end. This division is a holdover from the early years of the last century, when unions brought workers job security and better wages and benefits. But as Walter Reuther, the former head of the United Automobile Workers, said to my father, “Getting more and more pay for less and less work is a dead-end street.”

The need for collaboration will mean accepting sanity in salaries and perks. At American Motors, my dad cut his pay and that of his executive team, he bought stock in the company, and he went out to factories to talk to workers directly. Get rid of the planes, the executive dining rooms — all the symbols that breed resentment among the hundreds of thousands who will also be sacrificing to keep the companies afloat.

No bailout. Figure it out, UAW. Figure it out, management. It’s very simple economics–you know it’s simple because I can understand it. Do not come crying to the taxpayer, auto workers, when you want execs to bear the full burden of pay & benefits cuts and surprise! they won’t want to any more than you would want to. Figure it out and someday I might actually buy an American car.

Romney’s business sense could be a real asset in the White House after four years of–potentially–socialist-leaning economic policies.

Via Hot Air.

Will Not. Can’t Make Me. Pbbtthh.

Filed under:Movies,Not Cool — posted by Anwyn on November 17, 2008 @ 2:30 pm

“You know you’ll see it anyway.”

Will not. Won’t even watch the trailer. The outrageous stunts of the last couple of films, including and most especially the death of Data and his oh-so-stupid replacement by an oh-so-stupid lookalike, years ago turned me off to any more Trek. The glory days of the shows with continuity and similar look and just enough recall of the old show, i.e. the TNG, DS9, and Voyager triumvirate, are gone. And frankly, even without that, I’m just not into prequels, actor changing, and most especially not into Sylar as Spock. Forget it. I’m not even going to watch the trailer. I’m just not as easy-going a person as Lileks, who seems to take the new manifestations of things in stride even as he meticulously catalogues and dreams of the old. If you can’t bring it back, and you can’t, let it die in peace. And if you try too hard, may you die violently, instead, new Trek, after one spectacularly failed flick. I know, I know: Dream on.

Repeal the Bailout

Filed under:Good Grief,Politics,Priorities — posted by Anwyn @ 12:54 pm

I am sick and tired of reading the ever-changing scenarios under which the government or its component part Treasury will spend the $700 billion of bailout money. Do not buy up bad mortgages. Do not inject government capital into either private or public businesses. Let the banks either foreclose or renegotiate with the mortgaged holders themselves, which is not as far-fetched an idea as you’d think (note to Ed Morissey: Exactly why, if lenders do this, should the taxpayer take the risk instead of the bank investor?). People are already bitching and complaining about their 401Ks tanking in the stock market. The market tanking a bit farther won’t kill them. Either pull your money out and thus help it tank, or leave it in and wait for it to go back up as it always does. Do not bail out the automakers. The word “bailout” should be anathema in a capitalist society. Forget curbing CEO salaries and golden parachutes–just wake up, America, and quit investing your money in the stocks of companies who are willing to hire losers with failures like this on their track records. Let the market punish the guilty–by which I mean YOU, American investors. Stop assuming the stock market works the same way as your corner bank and that it’s some kind of travesty if you can’t get the same amount of money back out that you put in. Realize the risk that it is and take it with your eyes open and take far less of it, if you ask me. Stop this madness before extends to industries all but killed by the autoworkers’ unions and unrealistic ideas of what you can regulate people into doing. Kill it. Repeal the bailout.

Conversation of a Sunday

Filed under:It's My Life,Mothering,Photoblogging,Religion — posted by Anwyn on November 16, 2008 @ 11:27 pm

Son: I like that stained-glass window.

Me: Yeah, me too.

Son: What’s it of?

Me: Well, there’s a cross in the middle there.

Son: I think it’s God’s eye.

The Resurrection of the Long Road Trip?

Filed under:It's My Life,Mothering — posted by Anwyn on November 14, 2008 @ 12:45 pm

What, did it die? Well, yeah, at least in my family. When I was a kid we drove from Washington, the state, to North Carolina and Kentucky every summer to see my grandparents and aunts, uncles, and cousins. Five days in the car or else in our full-size Dodge cargo van. We also sometimes drove to Wyoming to see yet more aunts and uncles. That van was the It Vehicle for us kids. There was one bench seat in the back with no seatbelts, and that was it. We could and did spread out blankets, lie down at full length in the floor, play cards, play games, read, sleep as long as we liked, awaken to see one of our parents getting a speeding ticket, usually somewhere in the Plains.

It’s not just the affordability of air travel that has killed this tradition before my son ever participated in it; it’s also the carseat laws and even the seatbelt laws. I know this doesn’t stop other families with children The Bean’s age (five), but I simply haven’t been able bring myself to coop him up in his rigid plastic carseat for several days on end. While I still greatly enjoy the concept of the long road trip, it’s just too depressing to think about him trapped in that seat, unable even to lie down in the back seat should he want to sleep (and as he gets bigger, the carseat is a less and less comfortable place to sleep). So the long trip remains a pipe dream. We’ve done a few two-day stints (about six hours per day) and one experimental trip of sixteen hours in one day, with multiple 30-minute breaks. He broke down only once, at about six in the evening, but at midnight, 10 minutes from our destination, he thoughtfully remarked, “I like airplanes the best.” I can’t say I blame him. If you’re a) not driving and b) can hardly move, a road trip is not the fun I remember from my own childhood.

He just graduated to a backless booster that uses the “adult seatbelt,” a fact of which he’s very proud. We’ll see if this plus the advent of the portable DVD player encourages me to get back out on the road.

Veterans Day

Filed under:Priorities — posted by Anwyn on November 11, 2008 @ 8:48 pm

Thank you.


Filed under:History,Not Cool,Politics,Sad — posted by Anwyn on November 10, 2008 @ 9:18 pm

As a kid trying to understand the scale of human civilization, I once observed to my father that our culture seemed to act like a pendulum, swinging back and forth between the two ends of the liberal/conservative spectrum. In my limited understanding of zeitgeists some of which were before my time, I cited the supposed characters of the various decades: the fifties, staid and proper; the sixties, loose and vulgar; the seventies, trying to recover from the sixties; the eighties–well, my pattern ended there because I was living in it and I couldn’t see anything so very decadent about jellies and stirrup pants. Dad said no, that isn’t the way it works: The civilization presses towards the loose and irresponsible end of the spectrum until it collapses.

I wasn’t completely wrong, I know, but my image was wrong. Closer to correct is that various people and forces work to hold back the tide flowing to the irresponsible end and sometimes succeed in briefly damming it. Some people seem to believe the dam has now forever burst, or if it hasn’t already, it will as soon as Obama’s economic policies are enacted and turn bigger-than-ever swaths of the electorate into dependents.

As the previous post shows, I’m cautiously pessimistic. But I wonder if, even if our time has not come now, will it, irrefutably, inexorably, and inevitably? Can Western civilizations actually collapse any more? Or do they, as Peter Hitchens says, subside into the Third World?

Dear Mark Steyn

Filed under:Church of Liberalism,Sad — posted by Anwyn on November 8, 2008 @ 6:24 pm

I disagree with my fellow conservatives who think the Obama-Pelosi-Reid-Frank liberal behemoth will so obviously screw up that they’ll be routed in two or four years’ time. The President-elect’s so-called “tax cut” will absolve 48 per cent of Americans from paying any federal income tax at all, while those that are left will pay more. Just under half the population will be, as Daniel Henninger pointed out in the Wall Street Journal, on the dole. By 2012, it will be more than half, and this will be an electorate where the majority of the electorate will be able to vote itself more lollipops from the minority of their compatriots still dumb enough to prioritize self-reliance, dynamism, and innovation over the sedating cocoon of the nanny state.

I’ve no doubt you’re right, but the more you write about this, the less I want to have any more children who will have to live in this farce, which is of course in direct contrast to your main line of argument in life. What’s a girl to do?

Updat: Xrlq thinks I’m overreacting. If I am, then sure as hell P.J. is too:

The South Side of Chicago is what everyplace in America will be once the Democratic administration and filibuster-resistant Democratic Congress have tackled global warming, sustainability, green alternatives to coal and oil, subprime mortgage foreclosures, consumer protection, business oversight, financial regulation, health care reform, taxes on the “rich,” and urban sprawl.

Which is even scarier than Steyn.

It’s That Time Again

Filed under:Blogging,Cool — posted by Anwyn on November 6, 2008 @ 4:15 pm

Time for any and all Portland- or Northwest-area like-minded blog-conscious conservative-stripe folks to get together for the proverbial drink. Last year’s effort was great fun–and in Portland, let me tell you, it is a huge relief to sit down for drinks with people who you already know won’t foam at the mouth if you dare mention the Name of Bush or announce you’re a racist by saying you didn’t vote for Obama.

A commenter at Ace’s, Rasputin, is putting this together. Email him for details at and feel free to email me as well, anwynsnotes at gmail, to say you’re in. Hope to see you there!

Bad Sign or Just Network Caution?

Filed under:Television — posted by Anwyn @ 4:09 pm

ABC cuts Castle order to ten instead of thirteen.

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image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace