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Re: CHAT: Need a word for these!

From:Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Date:Wednesday, January 30, 2002, 12:36
En réponse à Almaran Dungeonmaster <dungeonmaster@...>:

> Christophe Grandsire wrote: > > > But as usual (and quite annoyingly so :)) ), the Dutch are right: > > Not surprisingly, the Dutch do not mind rubbing that fact into the face > of > everybody on our planet. That's why our country is such a popular place > to > visit.
:))) It is also why we think everybody elses system is wrong: the
> Taliban > are anti-social because they give people no freedom, Americans are > anti-social, because people have so much freedom that they don't care > about > other people, the French are stuck up and listen only to themselves, > the > English are afraid of changes, Germans.... wel we cannot fogive them > that > stupid war 60 years ago, Italians are fascists and opportunists, > Africans > are lazy, Asians are indistinguishable (who can see the difference > between > one Chinese guy and the next?) and Australians, the one group which did > not > get much bad publicity until recently, are cruel isolationists who put > young > children in concentration camps. >
Well, I've heard that the Swedish were highly respected by the Dutch (and the other way round is also true :)) ). The worst of it is that when taking people as a whole, those explanations are correct :))) . At least, I can speak about the French :))) .
> We are the perfect nation. It's no wonder that we have an average > population > density of 420 people per square kilometer... Everybody wants to be like > us > and live here!!! Even the French (pun definitely intended) come to > live > here! >
Well, the fact that I'm gay, and was already used to international discussions thanks to the list helped too :))) .
> Or maybe, just maybe, we are self-centered, egocentric, blinkered > know-it-alls with too much self-esteem. Naahhh.... I don't think so > :-) >
That looks like a perfect description of French people too. The difference between Dutch people and French people is that when they are called know-it- alls, the Dutch can back up things by facts! :)) Another difference: among themselves the Dutch people don't behave like self-centered know-it-alls, while the French do :)) .
> > Grammar, in my view, is the icing on the cake of a language. With > correctly > pronounced words, most of the meaning of what is spoken is logically > implied. If I give you a few words like "child", "dead", "driver", > "car", > "intoxicated" and "to hit", you need no grammar to have a strong idea > what I > am talking about.
Only because the context of our car-centered civilisation helps. The difference between a sentence without grammar and a sentence with grammar is that we can learn absolutely new things with sentences with grammar, while without grammar we have to see in our stock of experience if the words fit together somewhere. To take a contrived example, if I give you "U", "R" and "I", what do you think of? Well, my engineering trained brains immediately recognises Ohm's Law: U=RI. Somebody with a different educational traject may well be unable to get anything out of the three letters, while within five minutes s/he can understand Ohm's Law. Grammar is only needed to erase possible
> ambiguities. >
I disagree. The big power of grammar is to be able to make us understand new information, even with lack of reference. It's typically what makes languages open systems instead of closed ones (even compounds are the semantic appropriation of grammatical relationships). Christophe. Take your life as a movie: do not let anybody else play the leading role.


daniel andreasson <danielandreasson@...>
John Cowan <jcowan@...>