The Daily Nation’s Continuous Poor Grammar

Submitted by A Fair and Balanced Douglas Leopold Phillips
Roy Morris, Editor-in-Chief, Nation Newspaper

Roy Morris, Editor-in-Chief, Nation Newspaper

I hate to return to this topic; and, although I may want to resist invoking his name, like the late Branford Taitt, these days, I am forced to read the Daily Nation (and the Sunday Sun) with a red-ink pen in one hand. I often tell my friends that the Barbados Advocate, especially the Sunday Advocate, is a far better newspaper – good stories, well researched articles and earnest commentaries

Now to the matter at hand. I saw this story in today’s online Daily Nation:

Shock as brothers die 2 days apart

by Lisa King, Nation News

AS THE JONES FAMILY plan a double funeral for two brothers who died suddenly in the space of two days, they are left with more questions than answers.

The Durant’s Road, Christ Church family are trying to muster enough strength to make funeral preparations for Shurland “Jonesy” Jones, 47, who died on December 2, and his older brother Henderson “Buck” Jones, 50, who passed away two days later.

Their sister Marlyne Jones, who spoke to the DAILY NATION yesterday, said the family was not expecting either death. In fact, she said both men were thought to be in good health and the family was therefore anxious for the autopsy reports to learn the causes. (LK)

Family is a collective noun, which carries a singular verb. So, in one instance it cannot have a plural verb and then a singular verb in the same story – see the highlights in red. Most of us know that collective nouns, like class, crew, band, crowd, gang, pack, board, bunch, group, etc. all carry a singular verb; but, not the Nation.

I guess some publications are more concerned with maximising circulation and profits, than being journalese-correct, factual, ethical and responsible.

Bad grammar, particularly where the subject doesn’t agree with the verb, is very pervasive in the local media.  Their seeming inability to use correct English is mind-boggling. For example, recently, the Nation and the Sunday Sun (following their overseas counterparts) were reporting things like: “Barbados are batting in their second innings”, “he said the Barbados Water Authority are dealing with the situation”, and “the Chairman assured the public that the Board are aware of the matter and are addressing it”.

Lots of reasons for me to again fall off my favourite chair with laughter. Where are the proof-readers? Poor fellows, they really don’t know better anyhow. Gladstone Holder and Jeanette Layne-Clarke must be turning over and over again in their graves.

But hey, the constant absence of subject and verb agreement is not the only common error being ‘perfected’ by them. They still wallow in poor syntax and gobbledegook as they continue their crusade to undermine this administration by daily highlighting shortcomings and so-called matters of national import, as well as outright trivia and partisan copy. Case in point: two Sundays ago, there was a news item pertaining to the NUPW’s Akanni McDowell receiving payment for the month of November despite having been asked to revert to his substantive post in October. The Sunday Sun’s ‘story’ while purporting to be a genuine news item was actually a blatant case of the reporter editorialising with subjective comment and personal opinion, and a few expected Ws thrown in to give it a semblance of authenticity and credibility. So RIDICULOUS! All the basic tenets of journalism went thrown out the window.

One only has to read their lead stories everyday.They give prominence to the “bad roads and potholes”, the “reduced Transport Board fleet, late buses, and people stranded in the bus terminals for hours on end”, “poorly maintained government buildings, sporting facilities and playing fields”, “leaking sewerage along the south coast”, “visitors turned-off by sewage overflow in St. Lawrence”, “continuous industrial action at both ports of entry”, “persistent water woes” (like we never experienced these situations before) and “threats by one Rosalind (‘shut-down-de-country’) Smith”, “the Hyatt Hotel issue and Town Planning permission”, “BUT and BSTU militancy”, and “environmental problems at Combermere and other schools”. Talk about a partisan, politician organ!!! The NATION, tip your hat, take a bow!

But, they won’t publicize: the thousands of tourists who arrive here daily; the 6 Condor, 6 Thomas Cook, 2 Virgin Atlantic, one BA,  and 2 Jet Blue flights that were on the tarmac yesterday afternoon at GAIA.  We are in for another record year for tourist arrivals. And, while we are at it,  what about the $M7 and other resources that were invested in our 50th anniversary of Independence celebrations that have redounded to our collective benefit in a BIG WAY. Many persons realized employment as the multiplier and trickle-down effects kicked-in.

Also, let’s remember the overwhelming  success of Jimmy Cornell’s Sailing and Yachting Events, including the return of the much sought after, annual Trans Atlantic Yacht Race. Scores of sailing vessels have been docking here in the Barbados Odyssey 50 since mid-year, and by next month close to100  would have called. Don’t forget the temporary partnership with the private waste haulers to clean up the “piles of garbage across the country” that the Nation was highlighting. The place is now free of the “pile-ups”. To date, that arrangement has been a resounding success. The de-bushing campaign to clean our highways and by-ways is now under way; and, by the way, Combermere is being made ready for the start of the next school term. Work is continuing there apace. Can’t the Nation at least mention these FACTS. Anyhow, enough said!

I usually try to desist from criticising my ‘friends’ in the media, but I get incensed sometimes at their ‘foul-ups, bleeps and blunders‘, as they persist with their non-stories and solecisms, on the one hand, while their editors, lead writers and columnists  adopt a holier-than-thou attitude and a partisan, political posture on the other. So, I can be forgiven for again jumping on my hobbyhorse.

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131 Comments on “The Daily Nation’s Continuous Poor Grammar”

  1. Anonymous6 December 21, 2016 at 8:00 PM #

    Straying a bit off topic. It’s 3 days til Christmas, any tenants move into the grotto high rise apartments yet?

    Like

  2. de pedantic Dribbler December 21, 2016 at 8:16 PM #

    @Hal Austin December 21, 2016 at 5:08 PM …you have been particularly troubled re the issue of the perceived quid pro quo re “… journalist who recently returned from an all-expenses=paid trip…”

    I know you certainly are not suggesting that this did not take place with indecent regularity when you were still in the profession so considering the awesome proliferation of info sources today as compared to your heyday what is the big problem!

    This is not to dismiss the concern but surely discerning citizens know that they MUST question the bonafides of every journalist when they offer opinion pieces and even when they produce fact based news articles.

    One then reads the piece suitably informed of the author’s standing and accepts the data accordingly.

    Reading these blogs has surely thought us that and long before this we learned the same thing from reading the ‘slanted’ views of the conservative press as compared to the equally slanted views of the liberal press.

    So do you honestly believe that a journalist with integrity (or is that like a unicorn: a myth) cannot accept a trip and yet produce a fair and balanced piece! Though not ideal, it’s doable as you know.

    One small example… those ’embedded’ war journos going all the way back to the Vietnam War who though chummy and dependent on the soldiers still eventually excoriated those same soldiers and Gov’t over perceived war crimes.

    The modern day embed with trips to China or wherever is done obviously to influence a flattering article and if the journalist sells his/her soul with a simple puff piece then he/she can be easily held to account…as most data is easily check-able today. Which PROFESSIONAL will thrash their career like that.

    Like

  3. islandgal December 21, 2016 at 9:45 PM #

    The sign makers at the MTW need to have spell check and grammar check as well. Imagine seeing a sign saying “Cul de suck”! I wonder what the sign writer was thinking about. Merry Christmas Bushie my fart, AC my poop and Alvin my toilet paper ! Merry Christmas to all BU members and voyeurs.

    Like

  4. ac December 21, 2016 at 10:50 PM #

    Merry Xmas islangal.or better yet Mrs. Scrooge

    Like

  5. Bush Tea December 21, 2016 at 11:00 PM #

    Best wishes Islandgal
    Bushie can still feel the love…
    Yuh still got that 2 X 4….? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. charles skeete December 22, 2016 at 4:47 AM #

    After reading Mr Philips’s diatribe I suppose I can safely assume that he has never heard the Minister of education Mr Ronald ‘malaprop’ Jones speak.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hal Austin December 22, 2016 at 5:03 AM #

    de pedantic,
    Ethical journalists do not accept all-expenses-paid trips. In fact, the Anti-Bribery legislation now outlaws it.
    At Financial Times Group we had to register every invitation for a pint of beer and I kept a watchful eye on that development. One of my journalists once had a prostitute paid for by a fund manager, it is alleged.
    If a reporter had an expensive lunch at a five-star restaurant with a fund manager, for example, I kept that reporter away from writing about that fund. Reporters self-censor.
    The point is this: corruption is not always overt, it can be sub-conscious.
    If a fund manager is nice to a reporter he or she may find it difficult writing a negative story about that person.
    They are not throwing away money. They are selling hundreds of billions of pounds of retail investment products.
    Why do you think that in London there are 50000 financial press officers, many more than the number of journalists. They are not throwing away money; they are competing for the over £3trn in retail investments. It is mega money.
    So, like this season, a free shopping trip to New York is an insignificant pittance. Don’t believe anything written by a journalist who benefited from a freebie. That is PR, not journalism. If the publication cannot pay its own cost then it is in the wrong business.

    Like

  8. Dompey December 22, 2016 at 6:49 AM #

    Charles Skeete

    Do you remember the days when Dr. Don Blackman employed a vernacular which was far and beyond the comprehension of the average Barbadian voter? I recall with elation when somewhere back in the early 1980s, Mr. Blackman captivated a crown at a political meeting in Carington Village one with his employment of tautology, malapropism coupled with verbosity.

    Like

  9. de pedantic Dribbler December 22, 2016 at 8:50 AM #

    @Hal Austin at 5:03 AM …re “Ethical journalists do not accept all-expenses-paid trips. In fact, the Anti-Bribery legislation now outlaws it.”

    I accept your remarks and appreciate that your seminars and lectures are excellent experiences for attendees.

    I do hope however that all the stringent regulation which keeps a tight rein on reporters is discussed in the context of the incestuous relationship which takes place between journos and their subjects in every sphere…the financial industry is as egregious as any, frankly.

    You speak of having to “…register every invitation for a pint of beer”. No different from police officers being forbidden from getting a free coke and hot-dog from the shopkeeper on their beat. Perception of bias.

    That stuff happened all the time in ‘olden days’ and law and order was still quite unbiased but the infelicities are too grand today and realistically they are scores of dishonest cops, journalists etc who seek a gratuity, thus the suffocating regs.

    But does your paper and the others not sell subscriptions to the pros (pun intended) and surely take ads from their companies too in the industry they cover so ethically?

    What about the fact that your publishers and big shot media managers will hob-nob in the Hamptons, NY or right there in Mayfair or Chelsea with the barons their employers report about or lord forbid sip wine and cheese at Buckingham Palace or the White House with them.

    No ethical issues there!

    We do not disagree that there must be a distinct line controlling journalists and the validity of their articles…but let it be clear that what you described above is but ONE part of the mix.

    I read your FT, NYT, WSJ, Wash Post, CNN, Fox, Bloomberg etc. with skepticism as you guys are all biased in some way. Any sensible person must crosscheck …quite facile in today’s world (not a knock on your profession; it’s just what it is as life today).

    Like

  10. David December 22, 2016 at 9:37 AM #

    @dee word

    Not bias, philosophically bent!

    🙂

    Like

  11. TheGazer December 22, 2016 at 10:57 AM #

    @ De pedantic one
    “That stuff happened all the time in ‘olden days’ and law and order was still quite unbiased”
    Nope! Nope, nope! You cannot prove or defend that statement.

    If you are a journalist or is in a position to give freebies to journalist, I pray you, please desist. If you are not, then it is just your opinion.

    The stance taken by Hal Austin is the correct one. And as David said, there is a difference between bias and politically bent.

    Like

  12. Well Well & Consequences December 22, 2016 at 12:53 PM #

    https://www.barbadostoday.bb/2016/12/22/flood-warning-in-effect-2/

    ACs…there is a flood warning, how is the Graeme Hall swamp holding up..lpl

    Like

  13. Well Well & Consequences December 22, 2016 at 12:55 PM #

    http://ow.ly/jhcv307nsTP

    Is any of this being taught in the schools in Barbados and the Caribbean

    Like

  14. Well Well & Consequences December 22, 2016 at 12:59 PM #

    The good doctor also invented the technology that places a target on any place, even in a room, when bombings are being conducted, this is what young black people should know that they are capable of inventing……..not listening to shitty brainless politicians spout useless lies.

    Like

  15. Vincent Haynes December 22, 2016 at 1:47 PM #

    de pedantic Dribbler December 21, 2016 at 10:39 AM #

    You do have a point and language by abuse has also evolved compare Chaucers english with what is in use today.

    I was trying to find a reason why many individuals are no longer interested in reasearch and detail…..you can give that some thought.

    Like

  16. David December 22, 2016 at 5:11 PM #

    Of interest t BU is the watermark emblazoned on the image. This is an exclusive? Glad former PM OAS is ok. 

    Arthur injured in collision with ZR

    Like

  17. Fractured BLP December 22, 2016 at 5:36 PM #

    David can check to find out if Mia was driving the ZR?

    Like

  18. David December 22, 2016 at 7:08 PM #

    BU understands it was Fruendel who caused the accident because of making a SLOW turn thus impeding a rapidly moving OSA.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Artax December 22, 2016 at 7:31 PM #

    Lol, David

    Perhaps Freundel “the sleeping giant” made a slow turn because he fell asleep at the wheel.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Bajan in NY December 22, 2016 at 7:41 PM #

    @ Fractured BLP December 22, 2016 at 5:36 PM #

    lol

    Like

  21. Hants December 22, 2016 at 7:46 PM #

    @ David,

    Why is the former Prime Minister not driving a Bimmer, Benz, Lexus or Land Rover ?

    Like

  22. David December 22, 2016 at 7:47 PM #

    @Hants

    That is a Lexus SUV isn’t it?

    Like

  23. Hants December 22, 2016 at 7:57 PM #

    BarbadosToday reported that it is a suzuki.

    Like

  24. Artax December 22, 2016 at 8:06 PM #

    @ Hants

    According to today’s edition of the Guyana Guardian, Arthur was driving a 2016 Suzuki Vitara.

    Like

  25. de pedantic Dribbler December 22, 2016 at 10:09 PM #

    @TheGazer December 22, 2016 at 10:57 AM re ” Nope! Nope, nope! You cannot prove or defend that statement.” Says who!

    Let’s not play semantics. My post spoke clearly to the fact that there is an inherent slant to news propagated by the various media houses. I used the word ‘bias’ (a particular tendency, trend, inclination, feeling, or opinion, especially one that is preconceived; says one definition).

    David offered the more nuanced “philosophically bent”.

    According to Webster; Philosophy: a theory underlying or regarding a sphere of activity or thought. Bent: ‘a strong inclination or interest : bias’ Semantics, Mr Gazer!

    That difference you offer -where there is none, really – is often what traps us into the net of corruption. We focus on the sprats and the big fish rush past our nets.

    And back to my supposedly indefensible off-hand remark. Not condoning the activity as I noted above. I did not disagree with @Austin. I expanded his scope to the big fish bosses where influence is also strongly exerted on the media.

    @Vincent December 22, 2016 at 1:47 PM …. Absolutely language has evolved. As much as I enjoyed reading Chaucer’s merry, ribald ole English in the Miller’s Tale and all that we know we can’t cut it with that now.

    As you noted communication is about persons understanding each other so with what is in use today we have to accept and learn the lingo of the day…whether that is strange texting words or bad grammar.

    Ironic isn’t it that any gen X’er can write and understand texting shorthand with aplomb. An almost entire ‘language’ they created.

    Yet they would look at Chaucer and be totally flummoxed and disinterested when in fact it’s a very similar dynamic at play. They should embrace that kindred language. LOLL.

    That research issue is beyond my capacity…ask the Law Dean about that.

    Like

  26. Ozymandias December 23, 2016 at 2:40 PM #

    “…and by next month close to100 would have called.”

    Would have called or will have called?

    Like

  27. charles skeete December 24, 2016 at 6:11 AM #

    “Hants December 22, 2016 at 7:46 PM #

    @ David,

    Why is the former Prime Minister not driving a Bimmer, Benz, Lexus or Land Rover ?”

    Those people do not drive such top of the line cars unless they get them free be it from the Government coffers or private-

    Like

  28. charles skeete December 24, 2016 at 6:14 AM #

    Strange that Ac in mention yet that ‘see thru’ might be the cause-

    Like

  29. ac December 24, 2016 at 7:04 AM #

    If only OSA was made to do a breath analyzer test. The answer to cause might have been made more transparent

    Like

  30. David December 24, 2016 at 2:51 PM #

    Yes what is the status of the BAJ.

    http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/91543/ron-common-association-barbadian-journalists

    Like

  31. Vincent Haynes December 24, 2016 at 3:31 PM #

    David December 24, 2016 at 2:51 PM #

    It does a start stop every couple of years and goes back to sleep for a few more.

    Like

  32. David December 24, 2016 at 3:37 PM #

    @Vincent

    Do you know that a vibrant media is essential to a working and relevant democracy? It explains why we have so much dysfunction wt our governance system.

    Like

  33. Vincent Haynes December 24, 2016 at 3:54 PM #

    David

    A correct observation and the point has been made that due to our size an incestous relationship exists all around which prevents true investigative reporting being carried out……I remember B.C.Pires coming here at the Nation and poking fun left and right about us and our institutions and in two twose he was back in T&T………we need a united Caribbean where all can relocate freely which will allow the Pires’ of the region to come and show us up and shake us up out of our complacency and behind the back mumbling&grumbling.

    Like

  34. Hants December 24, 2016 at 4:12 PM #

    A Journalist in Barbados needs to have the support of his/her employer.

    Think on that.

    Like

  35. Vincent Haynes December 24, 2016 at 4:24 PM #

    Incestousness permeates the entire society from employer,employee,clients,suppliers,distributors,etc,etc

    Like

  36. ndtewarie December 26, 2016 at 11:08 AM #

    A GUYANESE XMAS

    You can travel all over the world at Xmas time
    The merry-making can’t match the Guyanese ole time xmas
    Why is that you may ask
    Surely its not such a big task
    To the Caucasians abroad they think we put on
    And we make a lot of fuss about Guyana, son
    But Guyana is not like any other country
    We were all real slaves and some indentured
    A real highfalutin word belonging to the same bands
    For slavery with horny managers and evil lead-hands

    A Guyanese Christmas is unique for sure
    Can never be understood by a NA culture
    Of hamburger, hotdogs and some lef-lef spaghetti
    Compared with my dholl puri and mutton curry
    Our six peoples each have a tasty dish
    Some still enjoy foo foo and salt fish
    And from the waterside to the sand reef
    Our Muslim brothers prefer their beef
    And from Corentyne or Buxton
    The Hindus mostly eat mutton
    During this time the air is filled with jukeboxes
    To describe it there aren’t any modern phrases
    Blasting of melodious Indian songs and chatney
    From a people known for their fine hospitality

    We may fight and get on during time for elections
    Our food keep us together with ample selections
    The Canton Chinese know didn’t they were coming here
    Our Portuguese brothers brought their garlic pork to share
    Everyone have their version using various spices and pods
    For their cook up and delicious metagee a food for the Gods
    It is rumoured that when Sir Walter Raleigh came
    The Arawaks cooked the llaba their finest game
    Raleigh licked his fingers and sucked that llaba dry
    So since then all the visitors who had a taste knew why
    Guyanese foods are so homelike and cooked with love
    Even if its the Canje Pheasant or simple ground dove

    Like

  37. Simple Simon December 28, 2016 at 8:34 PM #

    “As the Jones family PLANS a double funeral for two brothers who died suddenly in the space of two days, they IS left with more questions than answers. The Durant’s Road, Christ Church family IS trying to muster enough strength to make funeral preparations for Shurland “Jonesy” Jones, 47, who died on December 2, and his older brother Henderson “Buck” Jones, 50, who passed away two days later. Their sister Marlyne Jones, who spoke to the Daily Nation yesterday, said the family WERE not expecting either death.”

    Ok better now?

    Like

  38. Simple Simon December 28, 2016 at 8:42 PM #

    @A Fair and Balanced Douglas Leopold Phillips “They give prominence to the “bad roads and potholes”, the “reduced Transport Board fleet, late buses, and people stranded in the bus terminals for hours on end”, “poorly maintained government buildings, sporting facilities and playing fields”, “leaking sewerage along the south coast”, “visitors turned-off by sewage overflow in St. Lawrence”, “continuous industrial action at both ports of entry”, “persistent water woes” (like we never experienced these situations before) and “threats by one Rosalind (‘shut-down-de-country’) Smith”, “the Hyatt Hotel issue and Town Planning permission”, “BUT and BSTU militancy”, and “environmental problems at Combermere and other schools”. Talk about a partisan, politician organ!!! The NATION, tip your hat, take a bow!”

    Bad news is news. Oh shoot!!! Maybe I should have written bad news are good news. Anyhow if the DLP and/or the government in office (or in power) would like to spread the good news thyy can always use GIS and CBC.

    But wait!!!

    They are already using CBC and GIS.

    The Nation is supposed to be a government mouthpiece too?

    Stupssseee!!!

    Like

  39. Simple Simon December 28, 2016 at 8:46 PM #

    @A Fair and Balanced Douglas Leopold Phillips “And, while we are at it, what about the $M7 and other resources that were invested in our 50th anniversary of Independence celebrations that have redounded to our collective benefit in a BIG WAY. ”

    I doan know what you talking ’bout WE collective benefit.

    I ain’t get neffen. Not ever a sno cone.

    I guess i ain’t one ‘o WE.

    Like

  40. Simple Simon December 28, 2016 at 8:48 PM #

    @Hal Austin December 21, 2016 at 3:25 AM “The Nation is a bad paper, but it is all we have. The Advocate is a joke. Are the Nation’s journalists formerly trained?”

    I don’t know if they are formerly trained.

    But I bet that a good number of them are formally trained.

    Like

  41. Simple Simon December 28, 2016 at 9:49 PM #

    @John December 21, 2016 at 3:37 AM “at the university no less I bet. All part of the plan that each family need to have a member who is a graduate!!!!”

    I wish that people would stop deliberately misinterpreting what the then UWI principal said. Nobody said or implied that my 110 year old grandmother must return to college/university in order to ensure that a college graduate is i her household.

    http://www.barstats.gov.bb/files/documents/PHC_2010_Census_Volume_1.pdf
    As of 2010 Barbados has/had 78,936 households. I graduate per household means that Barbados should have 78,936 graduates. These graduates include those from the University of the West Indies, the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic, the Barbados Community College, AND those who have graduated from foreign colleges and universities.

    As of 2010 Barbados had a population of 277,821, and it is estimated that the under count was 49,115, and the institutionalized population was 2,513, for an estimated population of 329,449.

    So why would anybody object to 78,936 or just under 24% of the population being college/university graduates?

    And if 24% is too high for you please tell me how low you think we should go?

    In Canada 56% of the population has graduated from college or university. Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Israel, Ireland, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxemborg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Russia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States all have a college graduation rates of greater than 25%

    What is the matter with us that we don’t want to see our own people progress?

    How can we compete if we refuse to educate our people?

    We used to believe in the value of education. What has happened?

    Like

  42. Simple Simon December 28, 2016 at 9:56 PM #

    Luxemborg has a population of only 576,249 and a 46% college graduation rate

    Iceland only 332,529 and a 37% college graduation rate.

    We have a long way to go. A long, long way to go. And the rest of the world is not waiting for us.

    Sir Hilary was right to advise us that we should aim for a 25% college graduation rate, that is one graduate per household.

    We were WRONG not to have heeded his advice.

    WE WILL PAY FOR OUR ERROR.

    Like

  43. Simple Simon December 28, 2016 at 10:22 PM #

    @lawson December 21, 2016 at 8:33 AM “Alvin my statement of finding a nexus may protect other family members if it turns out to be a defective trait.”

    Tell me what sort of defective trait waits until you are 47 or 50 to kill you.

    Please note that both quite elderly parents are still alive and well.

    Please note that the sister is alive and well.

    Please note that one brother had been complaining of chest pain but had delayed going to the doctor. That from the report he rarely visited the doctor.

    Please note that it appears that neither brother was married or even liv-wid. Statistics indicate that unmarried men die at an earlier age that married men, because they have no woman to “nag” about doctor’s visits, taking medicine, eating right, drinking less and exercising more.

    Like

  44. Hal Austin December 29, 2016 at 4:02 AM #

    What percentage of Barbadian school leavers go on to university, and out of those how many graduate ie the number of drop outs.
    A few years ago I tried to get these numbers from the UWI and they tried to brow beat me, but declined to give the figures, which should be public. I also got the impression that they thought my questions were impertinent.
    It also says something about the questions they get from the dominant media.

    Like

  45. Bush Tea December 29, 2016 at 5:46 AM #

    @ Hal
    A few years ago I tried to get these numbers from the UWI and they tried to brow beat me, but declined to give the figures,
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    ..and you gave up easy so?!!!
    How about some undercover research…and publish your findings so as to force them to issue the correct figures?
    How about an expose on the cover-up?
    How about an article showing how other universities operate..and why UWI may not be operating above board…?
    Steupsss …. man you let us down badly.

    @ Simple Simon
    You are not expected to get this…..
    But just because Sir Cave set a target of one graduate per household does NOT mean that it was the right target for Barbados. Nor does the fact that Luxembourg may have a higher percentage.
    Sir Cave had a sweetheart deal where each undergraduate represented a GUARANTEED lotto payout to his empire building campaign by Bajan taxpayers. Bushie is surprised that he did not set an even higher target….

    Luxembourg has a highly developed social and economic infrastructure that REQUIRES large numbers of highly specialised, PRODUCTIVE employees. Their university system RESPONDS to this need with high-performance graduates.

    An agricultural / industrial / hotel service based economy does NOT need hoards of expensively trained university graduates to do clerical / maid / security type work. It only creates false expectations, poor attitudes and downgrades.

    Worse yet, the few TRULY talented and competent students in the system are drowned in the large volumes of mediocrity produced in the mad rush for volume, …with the result that even your TRUE GENIUSES are lost in the forest of shiite certification. You then end up with outsiders being required to own, manage and control every shiite in the country.

    …and even where we reserve somethings for ourselves- such as water, sewerage, garbage, transport etc, we NEED foreign consultants to tell us how to make them work…. cause they all fall into disrepair, ….while the few things that DID work – like BET, BNOC and BL&P had to be sold off to raise money to buy BMWs and pay salaries to the highly certificated shiitehounds from Cave Hill.

    Probably makes NO sense to you, but then again, you are ‘the one’ in your family ain’t it…?

    Like

  46. Artaxerxes December 29, 2016 at 8:44 AM #

    It is ironic that Douglas’ article used the story on the Jones brothers to articulate his message relative to the use of poor grammar by the journalists of the Nation Newspaper. Since Douglas “has gone down the Jones line,” perhaps he should have also devoted SPECIAL attention to PARTICULAR Jones, who is residing within the DLP’s household, and CRITIQUE his use of poor grammar as well.

    Ronald Jones is a TEACHER by profession, a FORMER PRESIDENT of the Barbados Union of Teachers and Barbados’ current Minister of Education. His speeches give me “Lots of reasons for me to again fall off my favourite chair with laughter.”

    Anyone who listens to Jones, and is HONEST, will not HESITATE to AGREE that he uses POOR GRAMMAR, while addressing the public in his capacity as Education Minister. “Bad grammar, particularly where the subject doesn’t agree with the verb, is very pervasive in (Jones’ speeches).” “His seeming inability to use correct English is mind-boggling.”

    And his pronunciation of words is equally atrocious. Jones seems to forget how to pronounce words beginning with “th.” For example, for him “three” is “tree;” “this that, these, those, them” are “dis, dat, dese dose, dem,” and he always refers to “school children” as “skool chil-drun.”

    This man is not only a TEACHER, he is our MINISTER OF EDUCATION as well. Being “A Fair and Balanced Douglas Leopold Phillips,” your call for the Daily Nation to uplift its standards should be EXTENDED to Ronald Jones as well.

    Douglas should probably give kudos to the Daily Nation’s journalists, who similarly to him, are “forced to read (Jones’ speeches) with a red-ink pen in one hand,” and make the necessary corrections thereby preventing Dougie from complaining about the paper printing “bad grammar.”

    Then again, perhaps Jones TAUGHT many of those journalists.

    Don’t mind me, yuh, I like nuff sport….

    Liked by 1 person

  47. Simple Simon December 29, 2016 at 10:29 AM #

    @Bush Tea December 29, 2016 at 5:46 AM “you are ‘the one’ in your family ain’t it…?”

    Nah.

    Didn’t go to Cave Hill. None of us did.

    Like

  48. Simple Simon December 29, 2016 at 10:33 AM #

    @Artaxerxes December 29, 2016 at 8:44 AM “Since Douglas “has gone down the Jones line,” perhaps he should have also devoted SPECIAL attention to PARTICULAR Jones, who is residing within the DLP’s household, and CRITIQUE his use of poor grammar as well…Then again, perhaps Jones TAUGHT many of those journalists.”

    You too wicket tho’…ya here killing me…lolll!!!

    Like

  49. Simple Simon December 29, 2016 at 10:44 AM #

    A big, big part of the problem may be that there is insufficient training/education available to journalists in Barbados and the wider English speaking Caribbean. Journalism is taught at UWI/CARIMAC at Mona, Jamaica. But what about those aspiring journalists from poor families who cannot afford to go to Jamaica? There is a short course (one year I think)mat the Barbados Community College. But is this enough? And if it is not enough what does the DLP/BLP plan to do about it?

    Many years ago there was talk about about upgrading the Barbados Community College to the University College of Barbados. What has happened to that plan? I knew an acquaintance a very bright woman who was willing and capable of heading up a Bacherlor’s of Journalism program at the Barbados Community College. She has experience in teaching and a doctoral degree…for many years now she has lived in the she U.S.A. teaching those people who work for the New York Times etc.

    And so it goes. We like um so. We do not cherish our brightest and our best.

    Like

  50. Simple Simon December 29, 2016 at 10:54 AM #

    @Bush Tea December 29, 2016 at 5:46 AM “Luxembourg has a highly developed social and economic infrastructure that REQUIRES large numbers of highly specialised, PRODUCTIVE employees. Their university system RESPONDS to this need with high-performance graduates.”

    A Simple Response: Perhaps the education system in Luxembourg and Iceland created the highly developed social and economic infrastructure. Perhaps if we invest more heavily in good quantity AND QUALITY post-secondary education we too will create enough highly specialised, productive, high-performance graduates to push our development forward.

    We won’t go very far, and we won’t do too well in the 21st century if we continue to believe that a good 7th standard, or a good secondary education is enough.

    It is NOT.

    Like

  51. Hal Austin December 29, 2016 at 11:22 AM #

    Simple Simon,

    It is more complex than that. Some years ago I took part in a discussion at the Barbados High Commission with some young people – three women and myself. One of the women was a Barbadian journalist studying international journalism at City University. After the discussion I offered her work experience at Financial Times Group before she returned to Barbados. She was contemptuous of the offer.
    On another occasion, as the founder of the MA in Financial Journalism at City University, when the course was launched I offered a fellowship to a young Barbadian journalist, not a single one applied.
    On another occasion I spoke to a group of 70 journalism students at City University, to begin with, all the Asian and white students were at the front of the hall and all the blacks stood at the back. When it came to questions not a single question came from the black students. Maybe I had horns.
    At the end, I offered work experience, as was my custom. Before I got back to the office, a young Japanese girl has emailed me, along with Spanish and a number of white students. Not one black. I also had one white Barbadian student doing work experience.
    Bajan (black) egos can sometimes get in the way of their progress. Young English people would never do that.

    Like

  52. Hal Austin December 29, 2016 at 11:28 AM #

    By the way, I wrote to Cave Hill offering a much better course than City, given how my original idea was messed around, and did not get a reply.
    So, on my retirement when I wrote to the head of the Financial Journalism course, and the head of department, informing them that I was about to retire and was interested in running a seminar on retail finance, I did not even get the courtesy of a reply. It did not surprise me. Some of the original students thought I was hard done by and have remained friends since then, even inviting me to China to give a talk on digital journalism.
    So, when you read of people being written out of history, I know the feeling.

    Like

  53. David January 2, 2017 at 12:17 PM #

    The Most Commonly Misused English Words

    First, we learn to say words. Next, we learn to spell words. Finally, we learn to define and properly use words.

    Well, most words at least.

    dictionary

    PIXABAY – PIXABAY.COM

    The English language is not easily mastered. Homonyms — words that are spelled or pronounced the same but mean different things — can be particularly challenging, which is why even the most highly educated English speakers get tripped up sometimes.

    Steve Pinker, a linguist and cognitive scientist at Harvard University, compiled a list of the 58 most commonly misused words.

    • Adverse: Unfavorable or harmful; commonly confused with "averse," which means disinclined.
    • Appraise: To evaluate the value of something; commonly confused with "apprise," which means "to inform."
    • As far as: The same; commonly confused with the phrase "as for," which means "with regard to."
    • Begs the question: Implies a conclusion that isn’t supported by evidence; commonly confused with "raises the question."
    • Bemused: Bewildered; commonly confused with "amused," which means entertained.
    • Cliché: A noun; commonly misused as an adjective.
    • Credible: Believable; commonly confused with "gullible."
    • Criteria: A plural word; commonly misused as a singular word. The singular is "criterion."
    • Data: A plural word; commonly used as a singular noun.
    • Depreciate: To decrease in value; commonly confused with "deprecate," which means to disapprove of.
    • Dichotomy: A division between two things; commonly confused with "a difference."
    • Disinterested: Unbiased; commonly confused with "uninterested."
    • Enervate: To cause someone to feel drained; commonly misused to mean "to energize."
    • Enormity: Extremely bad or morally wrong; commonly confused with "enormous."
    • Flaunt: To show off; commonly confused with "flout," which means "to openly disregard."
    • Flounder: To struggle helplessly; commonly confused with "founder," which means to fill with water and sink.
    • Fortuitous: To happen by chance; commonly confused with "fortunate."
    • Fulsome: Excessively flattering; commonly misused to mean "full or copious."
    • Homogeneous: Pronounced "home-genius." The word is commonly misspelled as "homogenous."
    • Hone: Sharpen or refine; commonly misused in the phrase "home in on," which means to move toward a goal or target.
    • Hot button: An emotionally or politically charged issue; commonly confused with "hot topic."
    • Hung: Suspended; commonly misused to mean "suspended from the neck until dead."
    • Intern (verb): To detain or imprison; commonly confused with "inter," which means to bury a body.
    • Ironic: To happen in a way that’s opposite to expectations; commonly misused to mean "unfortunate."
    • Irregardless: Not a word, but commonly confused with "regardless."
    • Literally: A fact; commonly confused with "figuratively," or metaphorically.
    • Luxuriant: Rich or lush; commonly confused with "luxurious."
    • Meretricious: To appear attractive but lack value or sincerity; commonly confused with "meritorious," which means to deserve praise.
    • Mitigate: Alleviate; commonly confused with "militate," which means to be "a powerful or conclusive factor in preventing."
    • New Age: Spiritualistic and holistic; commonly misused to mean modern or futuristic.
    • Noisome: Smelly; commonly misused to mean noisy."
    • Nonplussed: Surprised or confused; commonly misused to mean bored.
    • Opportunism: Exploiting opportunities; commonly misused to mean creating opportunities.
    • Parameter: A variable; commonly misused to mean a condition or limit.
    • Phenomena: A plural noun; commonly misused as a mass noun.
    • Politically correct: Inoffensive or appropriate; commonly misused to mean fashionable.
    • Practicable: To be able to put together successfully; commonly confused with "practical."
    • Proscribe: To condemn; commonly confused with "prescribe," which means to recommend.
    • Protagonist: An active or lead character; commonly confused with "proponent."
    • Refute: To prove something false; commonly misused to mean "to allege to be false."
    • Reticent: Restrained, or shy; commonly confused with "reluctant."
    • Shrunk, sprung, stunk, and sunk: All of these words are used in the past participle and are commonly misused in the past tense.
    • Simplistic: Overly simple; commonly misused to mean "pleasantly simple."
    • Staunch: Loyal; commonly confused with "stanch," which means to stop the flow.
    • Tortuous: Twisting; commonly confused with "torturous."
    • Unexceptionable: Not open to objection; commonly confused with "unexceptional," which means ordinary.
    • Untenable: Not sustainable; commonly misused to mean painful or unbearable.
    • Urban legend: A false and widely circulated story; commonly misused to mean "someone who is legendary in a city."
    • Verbal: In linguistic form; commonly confused with "spoken."
    • An effect: An influence. To effect: To put something into effect. To affect: To influence or fake.
    • To lie (as in "lies, lay, has lain"): To recline. To lay (as in "lays, laid, has laid"): To set down. To lie (as in "lies, lied, has lied"): To fib.

    The relative difficulty of the English language has a lot to do with the fact that so many of its words are derived from other languages such as French, Latin, and Greek. And unlike those other languages, the rules of English have been historically subject to debate, evolving over time. That has resulted in spelling mutations and sometimes confusing grammatical guidelines, leading some to conclude that English is one of the hardest languages to learn for non-native speakers.

    "As native speakers, we rarely stop to think how illogical many of the things we say really are – we’re just used to them," the Oxford Royale Academy wrote in a 2014 blog post. "Unless you’ve been brought up speaking English, how can you possibly begin to learn all these oddities? It’s little wonder that people trying to learn English end up feeling confused."

    [h/t The Independent]

    Like

  54. Piece Uh De Rock Yeah Right - INRI January 4, 2017 at 11:04 AM #

    While bright people like Steve Pinker from Harvard University present this expansive dissertation de ole man would simple say that this illiteracy is endemic.

    It is certainly found at the Nation where its populace is drawn from our wider society of illiterates.

    Case in point wunna Minister or Edykashun Ronald WeJonesing.

    But, do not be daunted by this endemic idiocy being solely that owned by the Nation Dufuses, or the Advocate or the Barbados Today assasins of the English language.

    Let us go to no less than the BBC, the supposed epitome of the English language for a short exposee to reinforce and reveal this pandemic of paucity of the English language.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-38497767 or The ex-CIA agent who interrogated Saddam Hussein by Adam Eley and Katie Alston for the BBC Victoria Derbyshire programme

    There are two truly strange comments read bad english/grammar by the writer(s) of the article, the first follows.

    “Mr Nixon took on the role of interrogator and was the first person to question Saddam Hussein at length, doing so across a number of days….”

    Across is a preposition or adverb and can only express “…movement over a place or region.
    preposition or position or orientation…”

    It cannot be applied to the inanimate word days.

    The second more difficult example of this ubiquitous poverty in English use lies in this sentence

    “…Mr Nixon is particularly scathing of President Bush, saying – as one of few people that have shaken the hands of both him and Saddam Hussein – he would rather spend time with the latter…”

    “…as one of few people that have shaken ”

    People is one of those strange words which i think can either be a countable or uncountable noun depending on if it is singular or plural.

    So, by itself, “people” has a plural verb, however and de ole man may be wrong pu dis one, since it is preceded by “one of …”, that would suggest a singular noun and commensurately proposes that the verb should have been “has” and not have.

    Dem ole Caribbean English books, combined wid de latin nomitive vocative accusative, genetive dative and ablative, does still run through the ole man head and complexion these absolutely useless grammatical constructions.

    But I humbly submit that our world at large is seeing a dilution in the proper use of language and that soon that famous statement by minister Ronald WeJonesing “the children are is reading well” is going to be the standard by which proper spoke English is going to be measured and his remarks about the non-hygenic practices of men leaving “public hairs” on the toilet seat (de man was did mean pubic) will be the norm.

    But if the vaunted BBC can do it, whu bout de Nation news??

    That is the Dumbville Inniss reasoning coming out in 2017

    Like

  55. Piece Uh De Rock Yeah Right - INRI January 4, 2017 at 11:14 AM #

    Third read

    “one of the few people” may be an anomaly to the rule insofar as “one who has” or “one of the people who have” … the very referring to the group of people who “have”

    De ole man doan like anomalies heheheheheheheeh…

    Like

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