Parse this: Pentagon fields new Language Corps

Landau, James James.Landau at NGC.COM
Tue May 15 13:31:52 UTC 2007

-----Original Message-----
From: Laurence Horn [mailto:laurence.horn at YALE.EDU]
Sent: Monday, May 14, 2007 10:59 AM
Subject: Re: Parse this: Pentagon fields new Language Corps

At 7:43 AM -0700 5/14/07, Dave Wilton wrote:
>This is not a news story, it's Dennis Baron's commentary on a news
>The confusion is in the second paragraph which is phrased in such a way

>that appears as if the commentary is a paraphrase of the words of a DoD
>This gives the article the form and appearance of being a news story.
>The use of the term "warehouse," however is a real quote. It's an
>interesting usage, to say the least.

Well, yes, the image of the army's "warehous[ing] linguists" is an
interesting choice, but I suppose a more judicious one than whorehousing


Not so quick, LH.  While I do not advocate the practice of whorehousing
linguists, I must note that it is a practical idea.  After all, the
quickest way to learn a language is by total immersion, and does not
"sleeping with the enemy" promote total immersion?  At least there are
accounts of women in post-World War II Europe who learned English by
sleeping with American GI's.

OT: re "dimunition", does that list of words like "nuptual",
"intravenious" include the pair "aluminum/aluminium"?

OT: on the subject of hard-to-pronounce words, next month I will be
taking a class in CPR/defibrillators, and  neither I nor the MD
organizing the class can get that word right.  I have more sympathy now
for our County Executive when he takes credit for putting "defibulators"
in every police car.

    - James A. Landau

The American Dialect Society -

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