Monday, July 5, 2004

Unquestionably Debateable

Today I read a newspaper commentary. I will refrain from naming either the author or the paper to spare both from further embarrassment beyond what they have already inflicted upon themselves.

While I tend to be in agreement with many of the author's views (I think), I ended up just laughing. The piece contained this unfathomable sentence in regard to whether underground water is part of a river system or not:

"Without question, this is debatable, but no one has stepped up to spending money to determine if this is wholly true, which it undoubtedly is not."

Down the rabbit hole we go!

Let's take the first five words. He's saying is that the issue is definitely uncertain. I think.

Next, we have a roundabout way of saying "nobody has determined" (Somebody buy this fellow a copy of The Elements of Style!).

Finally if we are not totally lost we arrive at "...if this is wholly true, which it undoubtedly is not." In other words we need to spend money to conclude what he has already concluded, even though he himself does not seem entirely certain of his conclusion. I think.

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