chinese: the next international language?

TS   Wednesday, June 16, 2004, 19:46 GMT
Chinese doesn't have tense to express time. English is more advanced.
TS   Wednesday, June 16, 2004, 19:50 GMT

Give me any newspaper of today and I will find lots of Simple-Present examples such as these:

Ex1: Recent POLLS show Bush’s standing with the public has weakened as Americans.....
Ex2: Several groups, including the National Abortion Federation and the Center for Reproductive Rights, PLAN to challenge the measure in court as soon as it is signed into law.
Ex3: Sony CLAIMS a power outage in Santa Monica right before launch slowed publishing.
Ex4: The 30 new candidates COME from around the world, from Australia to Zagreb, Vietnam to Venice, and on the whole follow John Paul’s conservative bent.
Ex5: Seventy percent of Americans SUPPORT a ban on partial-birth abortion.
Ex6: Italy’s U.N. Ambassador Marcello Spatafora, whose country HOLDS the EU presidency, moved between the two groups, sometimes with the British or French ambassadors alongside......
== These examples convey the practical use of the tense. They talk about today.

But grammarians have seen there is a trouble: they can’t put them in their grammar books. As these very common examples should be no longer said in Simple Present some days, weeks, or years later, they may be in a wrong tense by the time the book publishes. By then, time present will be a past. The teacher will have a difficulty to explain the wrong tense. Therefore, grammar writers want to keep these examples off their books. As a result, grammarians forcefully help teachers to explain Simple Present by not reporting them whatsoever. Instead, they carefully select examples that may be very probably still valid in Simple Present -- as long as the book exists:
Exa: Birds sing.
Exb: The earth revolves around the sun.
Exc: Babies cry a lot.
Exd: Wood floats in water.
Exe: I love you.
Exf: Tommy goes to school every day.

Now with these carefully selected examples, they may even claim Simple Present is to tell Habit or Permanency, which can no way corroborate those common examples above. Unfortunately, it is incredible but true: grammar books avoid the most commonly used examples, to explain Simple Present tense. Worst of all, while the common examples are not there, they hit a wrong conclusion that depends on the disappearance of the common examples. Every grammar book is an evidence.
Dulcinea del Toboso   Wednesday, June 16, 2004, 21:00 GMT
Paul, I doubt they will ever be absorbed into the "melting pot" and I wonder if they even have a desire to. Communities that were once English speaking have become Spanish. The English speakers leave or die off and the only people attracted to the communities are other Spanish speakers. Although the Spanish colonized the southwest first, I think it would be safe to say that throughout the 1900's English was predominant in California and certainly in Oregon. What is happening today is tremendous growth of the Spanish speaking population in those areas.

Although one hears a lot about "bilingualism" in regard to the above, it is not true bilingualism (where a person or those in a community speak two languages with equal fluency), but rather divisiveness where you have two groups of people each speaking the language they prefer and not making much effort to learn the other one.
Paul   Friday, June 18, 2004, 16:11 GMT
This sounds like the other post about how the English Language is treated in France. We talked about Bilingual countries, Canaada, Belgium and Switzerland, and Nic claimed Belgium wasn't really Bilingual because the 2 groups hate each other and resist using the others language.
In reality they are still Bilingual, if you absorb information from another language/culture, you are Bilingual.
In the US, the government is cracking down on funding for Bilingual Education. You have a simple choice.
You can be educated in English or be unschooled and illiterate in everything.
Adults have a choice. They can be stubborn about it if they wish.
Children get educated in English in the USA. The get absorbed.
Bush lived in Texas, he is not ignorant of this threat to the United states's melting pot.

Regards, Paul V.
Dulcinea del Toboso   Friday, June 18, 2004, 20:51 GMT
Oftentimes, "bilingual education" here has come to mean that the schools would offer classes in Spanish to children of Mexican and Latin American families who predominantly speak Spanish. This instruction would be in lieu of English.

It would make more sense for the Mexican/Latin American children to have their classes in English (as childhood is the perfect time for them to learn it) and possibly also offer Spanish to the non-Spanish speaking children. Then the foundation would be there for a true bilingual community. Having immigrant children taught solely in their own language at the expense of learning the language of their adopted country actually hurts their opportunities for advancement in society.
Paul   Monday, June 21, 2004, 15:44 GMT
The US agrees with you in theory.
But from a practical point of view, they are more concerned
to spend as many education dollars as the can to preserve and propagate their American culture to new immigrants right at the beginning of their Public Education.
The obvious benefits of a bilingual education is considered an expensive luxury, and is given much later in the teaching stream.
Parents probably wish to avoid having their own culture totally supplanted.

"What benefit it to you to gain access to whole world, and lose your soul"
Rhetorical Question, of course.

Bilingualism is very nice, but it requires a lot of Good Bilingual Teachers and not every student will be able to comfortably absorb both languages.
That's what we found in Canada, anyway.

Regards, Paul V.
anna   Wednesday, June 23, 2004, 07:54 GMT
how fun is that?!
Paul   Wednesday, June 23, 2004, 15:09 GMT
Bilingualism is very fun. Good excuse to practice my french on cute Quebecois.
It is not fun when people are insulted and mad at you, because you can't even order a Chocalate Milkshake(Lait Frappe Chocolat) in a Mcdonalds, in an understandable manner.
Not being understood is maddening.
Not understanding is tres dangereux.

Regards, Paul V.
Dutch   Wednesday, June 23, 2004, 16:46 GMT
The problem with bilingual education is that there are kids going 10 years through the public education system and are graduating without learning the english language. That is the reason for the backlash against bilingual education.
Ollie   Wednesday, June 23, 2004, 21:29 GMT
I have been to the future into nartique and they speak french,

in america they speak english
in mexico they speak mexican
ibn italo they speak *gulp* esperanto
in novabelum the speak "roman"
in argentina they speak castigiano
in arbia they speal spanish

All of africa speaks frenh appart from egypt which speaks spanish

Britannia speaks "ota"

"çaona" speals "bermudez"

esperanto is spoken in belgico and ranato
and al over south-amai

The chinese speak esperanto
the own the whole top of the world
the "katano"

english hasnt changed that much,

only a tiny bit in the spelling and "h" on its own is silent

this is an extract from my history project

The nana
the nana are speeshees of frog found in suwers
they leev off lita thrown by the inabitants

ROMAN, empulo de roman
salu, me yamo escar
vivo en costanasa en novabelum

is e un empulo tan stupido



and feuk you!
Paul   Thursday, June 24, 2004, 15:41 GMT
Hi Dutch

That is what I said earlier. Some children are just not able to absorb 2 languages in a Bilingual setting. They need to sent to a monilingual school as early as possible if they are to be fully literate in even one Language. Obviously, in USA, that language should be English. You need to have early streaming of Kids into Monilingual Schools with a strong emphasis on the basics. But the vast majority of Kids benefit in both Languages from Bilingual Education. Provided of course that their teachers are conversant in both languages.

The problem is not completely Bilingualism itself, but the lack of teacher and student accountabilty. Students are promoted to the next grade regardless of there actual learning. And there is no streaming.

Modern lax and overly democratic education is producing many kids who pass through 10 years of public education system without becoming literate. Since the the Literacy test requirement for graduation, we have found more than 20% of the student are functionally illiterate in reading and writing. Their parents go to court to try and force the schools to give them a Diploma, anyway.