QT Grammar R Us Seminar on the English Language

President Obama in a statement about Iraq and Afghanistan:
“When I took office, we had nearly 180,000 troops in harm’s way. By the end of this year, we will have less than 10,000.”
R.S., a Chicago reader, wants to remind the president that “few ” is for quantities that can be counted and “less” is for quantities that can’t be counted.
Which becomes  more complicated when referring to soldiers and sailors who have become veterans in need of medical care.
At which point they no longer seem to count.
More or less.

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These things happen

Rush Limbaugh

News Headline: “CNN pulls doomsday story about asteroid on collision course with Earth.”
All a mistake.
Unlike Asteroid 2014 KC45, which was discovered yesterday shortly after it passed within 50,000 miles of us.
But it was a smallish asteroid, and if it had hit, say, Palm Beach, Fla., it would have caused a crater no larger than Rush Limbaugh’s estate and beachfront.
So there is something to be said for asteroids.

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The case for zero tolerance of modern school administrators

Edmond North High School in Edmond, Okla., has named 44 valedictorians.
Forty-one are listed “with distinction.”
A call was placed.
“Edmond North High School.”
Many of your valedictorians are listed “with distinction.” What does that mean?
“It means they’ve taken five advanced placement courses.”
Thank you.
“You’re welcome.”
Or put it another way.
It is now possible to be a valedictorian without distinction.

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