Friday, February 21, 2020

No thank you

Tyler Cowen describes this paragraph as "Very good sentences"
Nearly all of the biggest challenges in America are, at some level, a housing problem. Rising home costs are a major driver of segregation, inequality, and racial and generational wealth gaps. You can’t talk about education or the shrinking middle class without talking about how much it costs to live near good schools and high-paying jobs. Transportation accounts for about a third of the nation’s carbon dioxide emissions, so there’s no serious plan for climate change that doesn’t begin with a conversation about how to alter the urban landscape so that people can live closer to work.
I immediately thought  of two possible meanings for "sentence":
  1. A grammatical unit that is syntactically independent and has a subject that is expressed or, as in imperative sentences, understood and a predicate that contains at least one finite verb.
  2. The penalty imposed by a law court or other authority upon someone found guilty of a crime or other offense.
And then I thought, No! Just no! You can't impose your idea of the good life on us. And no matter how well-meaning Cowen thinks he is, that is what this is about. Just leave us alone and stop meddling. The above looks more like the second meaning of "sentence" to me.

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