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From: email@example.com (Bill Sloman)
Subject: Re: Mechanical pressure sensor
Date: 6 Nov 2002 15:09:30 -0800
References: <firstname.lastname@example.org> <email@example.com> <firstname.lastname@example.org>
NNTP-Posting-Date: 6 Nov 2002 23:09:30 GMT
email@example.com (John Fields) wrote in message news:<firstname.lastname@example.org>...
> On 5 Nov 2002 13:28:27 -0800, email@example.com (Bill Sloman)
> >Sorry John, but the usual *American* language name for a strain gauge
> >is "strain gage" - I speak and write English, while you miserable
> >rebellious ex-colonials blame your indolent spelling habits on Noah
> >Webster, who couldn't even do a proper job of plagarising Dr.
> >Johnson's dictionary.
> Well, Bill, I don't guess anyone will be able to accuse you of
> plagiarizing any part of Webster's dictionary or, for that matter,
> Dr. Johnson's, unless the spelling you used above is correct
> according to the latter.
There is a convention that you always include a spelling error in any
pedantic posting - "plagiarising" which is an acceptable variant of
your "plagiarizing" is what I would have typed if my sub-concious
hadn't been observing the rule.
> >Any moment now you will be telling me that you live in a democracy,
> >whereas if you know what words meant you'd describe your political
> >system as an oligarchy of the wealthy.
> Amazing Segue! From lexicality to politicality without even a
> _hint_ of a connection...
Absolutely. I'm quite proud of it ...
> Get those tenses right if you can, Bill...
Hmmm. What I wrote does make a twisted kind of sense, if you look at
it from the right point of view, but I concede that the first two
"you"s refer to John Fields, and the last two to a hypothetical
creature with an adequate vocabulary, which makes the sentence hard to
> The way you've written it implies that I don't know what words
> _used_ to mean, but it sounds to me like you're trying to tell me
> that I don't know what words mean _now_.
We've got plenty of evidence for *that*.
> Of course we're an oligarchy of the wealthy. Works, too, doesn't
> it? I mean, pretend you're a very wealthy man (I know it's a
> stretch, but just pretend, OK?) and tell me if you were you wouldn't
> use your money to influence things so that you'd have more control.
My wife and I are wealthy enough (not very) to have effectively bought
our way into the vote counting for our electorate for the last U.K.
election before we moved to the Netherlands, but the U.K. electoral
system is carefully constructed to minimise the influence that the
very wealthy can bring to bear.
The U.S. system is much more open to this sort of influence - Bush's
election represents the triumph of the candidate with the bigger
war-chest over the less obviously unsuitable candidate, and earlier
you had a Texan billionaire candidate for president whose sole
recommendation was a huge war chest. Happily, I've forgotten the man's
name and the name of his computer company.
> What you're pissed about is that the folks with lots of money over
> here are doing things that you don't like and there's nothing you
> can do about it.
It isn't that so much, as that the guys who bought Bush the
presidency, and Regan before him, don't pay so much attention to
pulling their strings after they have been elected, and the U.S. goes
through a period of blundering around. The 11th September wasn't so
much a triumph for international terrorism as horrible example of
incompetence by U.S. internal security.
> But then, folks with lots of money _everywhere_ do what they want to
> without your consent, so why don't you just get used to it or else
> go out and make a lot (a _LOT_) of money and use it to bring them
> down? Sounds like a plan, but I suspect that somewhere downstream
> you'd turn into just another one of the boys...?^)
John - I'm an expert. The distinguishing mark of the expert is that
they know the limits of their competence. At the moment the whole U.S.
government has just been bought by a bunch of guys who aren't experts,
and didn't have to develop any kind of expertise to get the money they
used to buy their power. They haven't a clue how incompetent they
actually are - though the 11th September should have got the message
You need to change your system so that it doesn't fall into the hands
of the sons of the rich - the Bush's and the Kennedy's and the Gore's
of this world - just because they are rich. Just change the system
enough that they have to demonstrate some serious political competence
(Remember Dubya's not-for-publication aside into an open microphone
during his election campaign?) before they get to run the country, not
to mention the rest of the world.
You guys used to boast about having got rid the aristocracies that
used to govern Europe, and now you got one of your own, without any
tradition of noblesse oblige.
Other countries have got political systems that are less susceptible
to financial influence, John McCain would change yours in that
direction if you let him ...
Bill Sloman, Nijmegen
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