5
   

nothing = anything?

 
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 10:48 am
@Setanta,
Yes, you scurry in many a fashion, just as you are doing here. You got caught out, aaaagain, on language, surprise surprise.

A lot of my time spent helping ESLs is correcting the BS you feed them.

Quote:
In everyday usage, English speakers use may and might interchangeably--whether you like it or not.


That's another of your notable features - the ability for you to contradict yourself in the course of two sentences. You, you doofus, just used 'might' in a fashion that illustrates that may and might do have differences. I explained this in that other thread but typically, you, the great grammarian, scurried off to the safety of your little ignore hole.
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 10:53 am
@InfraBlue,
Quote:
that the standard usage isn't dialectical,


So what? Are you going to try another fatuous argument that standard English is the holy grail of language?

Language science doesn't agree with you, Infra. Your contention is spurious because if you think that this one nonstandard use sounds ignorant, then you must believe that the majority of your and everyone else's speech sounds ignorant.
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 11:01 am
@JTT,
No, you are making the assumption that because double negation sounds ignorant, then all other nonstandard use sounds ignorant.

You are making a leap of logic concerning issues in which logic has little bearing.

Sometimes nonstandard use sounds ignorant.

Oftentimes nonstandard use sounds merely nonstandard.
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 11:13 am
@JTT,
Your stupidity is breathtaking. I didn't say that the use of double negatives is wrong, i said it is considered wrong. Whether or not you approve, that is true, many, and probably most, educated, natives speakers of English consider double negatives to be wrong, and the use of them to be a sign of ignorance. Who cares what the great, hypocritical and self-contradicting "descriptivist" has to say about it? If you truly were the descriptivist you claim to be, you'd accept the fact on the ground that the used of double negatives is considered wrong by native English speakers, and considered a sign of ignorance.

From Using English-dot-com:

Quote:
The idea behind descriptivist grammar is that forms that are used by a substantial part of the speech community are accepted and recognised, but the truth is often far from this.


Your "truth" is certainly far from that definition, because you will reject usage by a substantial part of the speech community when you get on your little hobby horse. You just pretend to be a descriptivist. You quickly become a prescriptivist when you want to bludgeon someone, especially someone with whom you have previously disagreed. This crap about double negatives is a perfect example. Certainly many people use them, and from a descriptivist point of view, that makes is "right." But a true descriptivist would also recognize that a substantial portion of the speech community considers it wrong, and would, perforce, accept that, too. But you don't, because you are hateful and obsessed with attacking anyone who has had the temerity to disagree with you in the past. The reason i usually ignore your hatefulness and hysteria is that it serves no purpose to discuss anything with you. No power has ever the giftie given you to see yoursel as ithers see you. Your irrational and obsessive hatreds and vicious attacks on others are precisely why so few people here bother to talk to you.

I've never claimed to be a grammarian, and your contention about helping out ESL students who have been lead astray is hilarious. Sure, tell them about modal verbs, and then describe for them the slight deontic variation between may and might--that will really help them understand when they encounter one of the tens of millions, if not actually hundreds of millions, of English speakes who use them interchangeably.

Loon.
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 11:14 am
@InfraBlue,
I find it incredible that you would assert that logic ever motivates what JTT posts.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 11:46 am
Every thread which goes on this long can benefit from a musical interlude. I think this one is à propos . . .



You may be right, I may be crazy, but it just might be a lunatic you're lookin' for . . .
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 12:52 pm
@Setanta,
Quote:
Your "truth" is certainly far from that definition, because you will reject usage by a substantial part of the speech community when you get on your little hobby horse. You just pretend to be a descriptivist. You quickly become a prescriptivist when you want to bludgeon someone, especially someone with whom you have previously disagreed. This crap about double negatives is a perfect example. Certainly many people use them, and from a descriptivist point of view, that makes is "right." But a true descriptivist would also recognize that a substantial portion of the speech community considers it wrong, and would, perforce, accept that, too.


Speaking of ignorance, Set, this has to take the cake. You think you have caught me in some contradiction [as does Infra] when all this really is is your less than simplistic grasp of this whole area of study.

After all the explanations, after all the opportunities you've had to read, and just possibly, [that's a really low 'might'] understand the difference between descriptivism and prescriptivism, you still don't understand.

And you make yourself out to be a bright guy.

Descriptivism doesn't endorse, [never has], that the ignorant opinions of select groups of people constitute a meaningful description of how language works or how it should work.

Descriptivism could never possibly accept this ludicrous notion you suggest and if you think about it, no forget that, maybe if Beth explains it to you, reeeeeally slow, you might just get it.

Do you even realize what you've written, what you are attempting to say? Descriptivism describes language as it is actually used and there are no value judgments made because value judgments are not of science.

But you think that a "good" descriptivist would/should "recognize" the opinions of ignorant people as to how language ought to be used, which would make that descriptivist a prescriptivist. Pretty laughable line of "reasoning", Set.

Language is set and established by the people who use it. People making ignorant judgments about language isn't descriptivism, it's prescriptivism pure and simple.

It's people, with no sense of logic, no sense of the workings of language, making a decision about what constitutes "proper" language solely on the basis of opinion. Why such a simple concept eludes you is really beyond me.

Did you fail to read Professor Pullum in the bit I provided? Did you fail to go to the link given and read it all? He's a descriptivist [who you might want to note, agrees completely with my take on this] because that's the only sane way to determine how something so complex as language actually works.

You are as ignorant as Zink. Read on, lad, read it a couple of times. I'll accept questions from you when you finish.

Quote:
"EVERYTHING IS CORRECT" VERSUS "NOTHING IS RELEVANT"

On January 23 a user identified as Zink made some comments on ceejbot's blog about the Language Log post Nearly all strings of words are ungrammatical. They struck me as really interesting:

Zink: There's a funny bit in there where they try to at once claim to be "descriptivist, not prescriptivist" while at the same time decrying the word "are" in,

Why do some teachers, parents and religious leaders feel that celebrating their religious observances in home and church are inadequate and deem it necessary to bring those practices into the public schools?

Sorry kids, you can't be an apple and an orange, and if you're a descriptivist, and someone honestly makes a sentence, that's an honest sentence in the language that actually is.

By "they" Zink means the Language Log staff (the post was actually mine; none of my colleagues need take responsibility for the views expressed here). What's so interesting is that it is quite clear Zink [Setanta] cannot see any possibility of a position other than two extremes: on the left, that all honest efforts at uttering sentences are ipso facto correct; and on the right, that rules of grammar have an authority that derives from something independent of what any users of the language actually do.

But there had better be a third position, because these two extreme ones are both utterly insane.

http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/001843.html
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 12:56 pm
@InfraBlue,
Quote:
you are making the assumption that because double negation sounds ignorant, then all other nonstandard use sounds ignorant.


No, I'm countering your ignorant opinion that negative concord sounds ignorant. You grew up with it, the music that you listened to is full of it. You almost certainly never thought to get on your high horse likely until you were in school and they filled your head with all manner of nonsense about language.

Care to tell us how you came to this judgment about this particular language use?
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 12:58 pm
@Setanta,
Quote:
From Using English-dot-com:


Speaking of breathtaking stupidity, you cite Using English-dot-com.
0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  2  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 01:07 pm
@JTT,
Growing up with it, and the music that I listened to does not negate the fact that double negation sounds ignorant.

I came about this judgment about this particular language use after learning the standard language use.
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 01:25 pm
@InfraBlue,
Quote:
I came about this judgment about this particular language use after learning the standard language use.


I'll just bet you that that learning of yours was completely scientific, absent from ignorant value judgments about language.

It's a pity that that learning didn't come with a bit of learning about language, Infra.

This ignorance you exhibit on language is so unlike you.

Quote:
At this point, defenders of the standard are likely to pull out the notorious double negative, as in [I can't get no satisfaction.] Logically speaking, the two negatives cancel each other out, they teach; Mr. Jagger is actually saying that he is satisfied. The song should be entitled "I Can't Get [Any] Satisfaction." But this reasoning is not satisfactory. Hundreds of languages require their speakers to use a negative element in the context of a negated verb. The so-called "double negative," far from being a corruption, was the norm in Chaucer's Middle English, and negation in standard French, as in [Je ne sais pas] where [ne] and [pas] are both negative, is a familiar contemporary example. Come to think of it, standard English is really no different. What do [any], [even], and [at all] mean in the following sentences? I didn't buy any lottery tickets. I didn't eat even a single french fry. I didn't eat fried food at all today. Clearly, not much: you can't use them alone, as the following strange sentences show: I bought any lottery tickets. I ate even a single french fry. I ate fried food at all today. What these words are doing is exactly what [no] is doing in nonstandard American English, such as in the equivalent [I didn't buy no lottery tickets] -- agreeing with the negated verb. The slim difference is that nonstandard English co-opted the word [no] as the agreement element, whereas Standard English co-opted the word [any].

I hope to have convinced you of two things. Many prescriptive rules are just plain dumb and should be deleted from the usage handbooks. And most of standard English is just that, standard, in the sense of standard units of currency or household voltages. It is just common sense that people should be given every encouragement and opportunity to learn the dialect that has become the standard one in their society and to employ it in many formal settings. But there is no need to use terms like "bad grammar," "fractured syntax," and "incorrect usage" when referring to rural and Black dialects. Though I am no fan of "politically correct" euphemism (in which, according to the satire, "white woman" should be replaced by "melanin-impoverished person of gender"), using terms like "bad grammar" for "nonstandard" is both insulting and scientifically inaccurate.

http://pinker.wjh.harvard.edu/articles/media/1994_01_24_thenewrepublic.html

0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 01:52 pm
@InfraBlue,
Quote:
does not negate the fact that double negation sounds ignorant.


The only part that is fact, Infra, is the fact that you think it sounds ignorant; which, I'm sure you'll agree, means it's simply an opinion, and a badly misinformed one at that.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 01:57 pm
@InfraBlue,
Quote:
I came about this judgment about this particular language use after learning the standard language use.


Were you impressed with the proof and the logic given by those who taught you about this language error?

Please recount it, if you wouldn't mind.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 02:04 pm
@JTT,
If, as you allege, descriptivism describes how language is actually used, you'd be obliged to acknowledge that a significant proportion of the language-using community of English-speakers consider a double negative to be wrong. It is your value judgment that this makes them ignorant. It is your value judgment that noting as much is leading an ESL student astray. It is your value judgment that your particular prejudice here is "science." (Oh please, you make laugh so much it actually hurts.)

As a matte of fact, i can see not only more that just two positions, but several positions which represent nuance. You're the one here is being a presciptivist by saying that those English speakers who consider a double negative to be wrong are "ignoramuses." Not only was it not misleading to tell Oristar that a double negative is considered wrong (at no time did i say it is wrong, only that it is considered wrong), it is an important clue to Oristar achieving communicative competence. Whether or not a shithook nit-picker like youi agrees, if Oristar develops a habit of using double negatives, a significant and well-educated proportion of English-speakers are going to dismiss him as ignorant. It is precisely because i don't subscribe to the notion that all attempts at sentences are ipso facto correct that i offer the ESL student the best usage advice that i can.

You're so full of the (illusory) excellence of your understanding that you can't see when you are filling these students full of stilted, silly and essentially prescriptive advice.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 02:16 pm
You don't like Using English-dot-com? You want to be snotty about that site? That's OK by me. Here's the definition from About-dot-com:

Quote:
A nonjudgmental approach to language that focuses on how it is actually spoken and written.


You're not nonjudgmental--you're just about the most judgmental member at this site--just as ehBeth pointed out.

Here's how Superglossary-dot-com describes descriptivist:

Quote:
Descriptivist: A grammatical treatise or dictionary is said to be descriptivist if it has the goal of describing nonjudgmentally how a group of people tends to use language, rather than the goal of fashioning guidelines or 'rules' for grammar, spelling, and word use.


Fashioning guidelines? That's your constant habit here--telling others what they can and can't say about language usage. Given your profound ignorance of languages and word derivation, it's hilarious to think of your rants, and the word "nonjudgmental." You aren't even on a nodding basis with nonjudgmental. Whether you like it or not, a significant proportion of the English-speaking world tends to treat double negatives as a sign of ignorance. Who gives a **** what you think on the subject?
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 02:35 pm
@JTT,
I was impressed enough that I took their word for it that double negation is nonstandard.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 02:36 pm
@Setanta,
Quote:
If, as you allege, descriptivism describes how language is actually used, you'd be obliged to acknowledge that a significant proportion of the language-using community of English-speakers consider a double negative to be wrong.


Note the operative word, "consider".

Quote:
It is your value judgment that this makes them ignorant.


You still don't understand. It is the science of language that shows such beliefs to be based in ignorance.

If there was something other than ignorant opinion that supported your position, you just might have come up with it by now.

Quote:
It is your value judgment that noting as much is leading an ESL student astray.


It most certainly is leading an ESL astray, or for that matter any student, because YOU only repeated an old canard, which is backed only by the opinion of people who are actually ignorant of how language works.

Infra was led astray, as were you, as was every student who has ever studied language the US of A.

You didn't inform Ori that this has no basis in science.

You didn't inform Ori of the only laughable bit of "proof" offered by those who hold to that opinion.

When I explained to Ori about 'data' and the laughable notions given for that bit of prescriptive nonsense, he was able to make an informed decision.

Quote:
It is your value judgment that your particular prejudice here is "science."


So you still haven't read Professor Pullum's article, eh, Set? I've tried to explain it to you, but being thick as a brick Setanta pretty much precludes you ever getting it.

But please don't think that I'm in any way suggesting that you shouldn't continue to make a fool of yourself.

Quote:
As a matte of fact, i can see not only more that just two positions, but several positions which represent nuance.


You think you can because your grasp of how language works is so abysmally low.

Quote:
You're the one here is being a presciptivist by saying that those English speakers who consider a double negative to be wrong are "ignoramuses."


No, the facts show that these people are ignoramuses. The proof they offer, want to take a crack at defending it?, is pure drivel, but it's always more than enough for these people to advance the canard - is that not the very definition
of an ignoramus?

Quote:
Not only was it not misleading to tell Oristar that a double negative is considered wrong (at no time did i say it is wrong, only that it is considered wrong),


Awwww, is this all about poor little Setanta?

You failed to provide Ori with the full story. You left him with a spurious notion, probably because you didn't have the guts to say that you believed the same silly nonsense.


Quote:
it is an important clue to Oristar achieving communicative competence.


Here we go again with another silly old canard. ESLs can't be told lies about language just because some idiot or a group of idiots hold onto outdated old rules that were never rules to begin with.

Whether or not a shithook nit-picker like youi agrees, if Oristar develops a habit of using double negatives, a significant and well-educated proportion of English-speakers are going to dismiss him as ignorant.

Quote:
It is precisely because i don't subscribe to the notion that all attempts at sentences are ipso facto correct that i offer the ESL student the best usage advice that i can.


And in this situation, you've fallen short. But I know that you'll pick yourself up and alternately lead and mislead ESLs from hereon out. Not to worry, Zink, I've got you covered.



0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 02:51 pm
@Setanta,
Quote:
You don't like Using English-dot-com? You want to be snotty about that site? That's OK by me. Here's the definition from About-dot-com:


A nonjudgmental approach to language that focuses on how it is actually spoken and written.


That sire is simply one of many that has proliferated to make money off the ESL market. It has an owner who has a dubious grasp of the workings of language and he's an ESL teacher.

Quote:
You're not nonjudgmental--you're just about the most judgmental member at this site--just as ehBeth pointed out.


Did she say that to your face, Set, and then burst out laughing when she realized who she was talking to?

But let's try to keep this to the language issue. You do this all the time, you did it in the Peeves threads - as soon as you discover that you're out of your depth, this sort of thing happens.

Now let's look at, what you posted

A nonjudgmental approach to language that focuses on how it is actually spoken and written.

EXACTLY! That's all I've been defending in this discussion. It's you that been trying to make an indefensible defense for those who make spurious judgments about how people use language.

Quote:
Descriptivist: A grammatical treatise or dictionary is said to be descriptivist if it has the goal of describing nonjudgmentally how a group of people tends to use language, rather than the goal of fashioning guidelines or 'rules' for grammar, spelling, and word use.


Quote:
That's your constant habit here--telling others what they can and can't say about language usage.


Now you've taken to outright lies, Setanta. While that becomes you, it can't be left unchallenged. How many times did I tell you in the Peeves threads that people can say whatever they want about language. I encouraged them to do so, with the proviso that their notions could be challenged.

Now, are you gonna be man here and admit that you've lied or are you just gonna continue to be Setanta?

Quote:
You aren't even on a nodding basis with nonjudgmental.


I think that a cursory examination of your posts, even just this very one, might show that you are being a bit hypocritical, Set.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 02:54 pm
@InfraBlue,
Quote:
I was impressed enough that I took their word for it that double negation is nonstandard.


That's not something that would take a rocket scientist, Infra.

Aren't you at all interested in provided the attendant proofs they offered you?
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Sep, 2011 02:57 pm
Quote:
Infra was led astray, as were you, as was every student who has ever studied language the US of A.



In what, and how exactly, were we lead astray?
 

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