Occasional reflections on Life, the World, and Mathematics

Posts tagged ‘grammar’

Problems with the subjunctive [for German grammar enthusiasts]

I’ve noticed that web publishing has generally degraded proofreading standards. Still, it’s shocking to see Der Spiegel, a bastion of the German language, making two errors in conjugating the subjunctive in a report on the negotiations over the new governing coalition in Germany:

Was wäre ihre Alternative? Eine Koalition mit den Acht-Prozent-Grünen, bei der die Zahl der Ministerposten für die Union zwar größer, die inhaltlichen Kompromisse aber weitgehender ausfielen würden? Die Union wurde sich in einer solchen Konstellation Unsicherheit mit einkaufen.

I’m genuinely appalled. But no more than I am by the SPD maneuvering itself into this position by continuing to boycott Die Linke. They’re like those proverbial Japanese soldiers still hidden away on an island thinking the war is still going on. Except the SPD is the last one still fighting the Cold War. Or the war for the purity of the socialist cause.

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