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Your opinion . . . ?

Postby brogine » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:48 pm

A picture caption from Newsweek of Jan.28:

Sadr loyalists have largely obeyed his call to halt attacks, for the moment

This seems to be mixing tenses, in a way. The meaning is plain enough, but this kind of careless writing seems a slippery slope.
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Postby Perry » Wed Jan 30, 2008 12:42 pm

I don't know if the tenses are mixed, but I would have written "so far" instead of for the moment. Actually, better yet:

"So far, Sadr loyalists have largely obeyed his call to halt attacks."
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Postby Stargzer » Wed Jan 30, 2008 9:52 pm

I don't know, Perry.

To me, "so far" implies a continuous action from some starting point in the past up to the present, which stands a chance of continuing, while "for the moment" implies an action which may not have been continuous but rather may only have recently begun, and which has an uncertain chance continuing.

Since the Sadr loyalists did not originally obey the call for a halt to attacks, and some still are not, I think that, for the moment, there is doubt they will continue to obey the call.
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Re: Your opinion . . . ?

Postby sluggo » Fri Feb 01, 2008 12:43 am

brogine wrote:Sadr loyalists have largely obeyed his call to halt attacks, for the moment


I don't see mixed tenses either but sloppy slopery, yes, in that as constructed it can almost mean (but for a measly comma*) either that the loyalists have refrained for now but may resume in spite of his call, or that 'he' has called only for a momentary halt (or even both).

*nod to Getrude Stein, 134 years old this week
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Re: Your opinion . . . ?

Postby Enigma » Sun Feb 07, 2010 2:17 am

brogine wrote:A picture caption from Newsweek of Jan.28:

Sadr loyalists have largely obeyed his call to halt attacks, for the moment

This seems to be mixing tenses, in a way. The meaning is plain enough, but this kind of careless writing seems a slippery slope.


Hi, Brogine

For there to be mixed tenses, the sentence would require two finite verbs. This sentence has but one finite verb and thus tense: the present perfect 'have obeyed.'
What you see, yet can not see over, is as good as infinite. ~Thomas Carlyle
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:08 pm

Hi Enigma:
Interesting new avatar. Makes a "point".
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Feb 07, 2010 1:10 pm

Note, however, the posts above yours date from 2008.
Many here do go way back, way back.
Lots just died in the '05 - '06 time period.

Obviously Saparris has not found you here yet.
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Postby saparris » Sun Feb 07, 2010 4:24 pm

Sadr loyalists have largely obeyed his call to halt attacks, for the moment.


Right you are, Enigma. You can't mix tenses when there is one tense.

"Most Sadr loyalists have obeyed...." would eliminate the poorly placed "largely," which would improve the clarity.

(Let's get some fresh air in the grammar threads, Enigma. glad you're here.)
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Postby Enigma » Sun Feb 07, 2010 5:50 pm

I hadn't noticed the time the threads were made. Maybe grammar has become obsolete. Is there a new way to communicate perhaps? Maybe I should start a thread about txt language.
What you see, yet can not see over, is as good as infinite. ~Thomas Carlyle
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Postby saparris » Sun Feb 07, 2010 6:22 pm

Please don't. Start a thread about anything but that.
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Feb 07, 2010 9:59 pm

Totally ditto to Saparris above. No texting, please.
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Postby Enigma » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:02 pm

fair enuf lol, i h8 it wen pple chat in txt form, its jst so lazy and dum-lookin
What you see, yet can not see over, is as good as infinite. ~Thomas Carlyle
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:09 pm

And don't forget lol means "loser on the loose."
I despise texting and on the other site I made
that eminently clear. I have not run into it here
on this site yet, (EXCEPT BY YOU). But I'm still
glad you are here.
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Postby Enigma » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:28 pm

I'll refain from using it for your sake, Luke. You cannot blame me for the odd slip-up here and there though!

I'm so used to it now that it's hard 4 me 2 stop :)
What you see, yet can not see over, is as good as infinite. ~Thomas Carlyle
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Postby saparris » Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:29 pm

But I'm still glad you are here.


Me 2.
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