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A round peg in a world of square holes...

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The rot within

It is astounding how the local reading public tolerates the abysmal standard of English practiced by The Straits Times Propaganda Daily The Shitty Times. Read the following excerpt and note how many mistakes you can spot.


Boeing's new B-787 Dreamliner jet, which was unveiled early this month, promises to be 20 per cent more fuel-efficient and less noisy than a similar-sized plane. Built from parts sourced from around the world, the aircraft also boasts a new standard of comfort for passengers and is Boeing's most successful plane launch ever with more than 600 orders.

Less fuel burn from:

1.  Less complex wing flaps with fewer separate segments that also cut weight because fewer bolts for example are needed to hold the parts together.

2.  Modern aerodynamics in the design of the wings and nose.

3.  The new fuel-efficient engines powered by Rolls-Royce and GE electric.

4.  Increased use of light-weight composite materials instead of aluminium, to build the plane.

5.  A droopy nose which reduces friction so that there is less drag.

Less waste

The plane is made primarily of carbon-fibre composite materials, which are more flexible and can be trimmed like cloth so that the manufacturing processes produce less scrap material and waste.

Less noise

The sound footprint, which is the distance across which the noise is heard, is 60 per cent smaller for the B-787 compared to comparable jets today.

Less emissions

Lower fuel burn means a 20 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide and nitrogen emissions.

The 787 has no window shades. Dimness or brightness is controlled electronically by cabin brew. The windows are bigger than those found on any aircraft today.

Toilets in the 787 are larger and wheelchair-accessible.

Overhead bins are big enough to fit three large cabin bags and three laptops.

(Kaur, Karamjit.  "Boeing's green jet."  Straits Times [Singapore] 16 July 2007: 14.)


Punctuation and capitalization distinguish, "I helped my uncle, Jack, off a horse," from, "i helped my uncle jack off a horse."

"The sound footprint, which is the distance across which the noise is heard, is 60 per cent smaller for the B-787 compared to comparable jets today" (italics mine) — this is the standard of English coming from an award-winning, best-selling, newspaper (or so they claim) in Singapore.

The venerable Doctor Samuel Johnson labeled such hacks, "butchers of the language" — I couldn't agree more; there are those who wield pens with the deftness and skill of a surgeon, and there are those who dream themselves surgeons with a couple of six-packs and a chainsaw.

For what it is worth, Penthouse and Playboy practice a higher standard of English.

In the late 1990s, due to budget constraints and privatization of public schools, the standard of English language instruction fell, leading to confusion of grammar and vocabulary. Hence, in an unregulated socio-linguistic environment, the spontaneous varieties of a creolized English began to form after the 1960s.

Clive James' scathing expostulation, "The Continuing Insult to the English Language," laments that the situation in the United Kingdom fares no better.

God help us all.


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