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    #1

    have the good sense to do sth.

    Dear all,

    What's the meaning of "have the good sense to do sth."?

    what does the phrase imply?

    Does "it" underlined in the sentence refer to the Roaring Twenties?

    Thanks in advance.

    Warren G. Harding campaigned for the U.S. presidency in 1920 using a slogan he coined himself: “A return to normalcy.” He had meant to say “normality,” which should give you some idea of what a nincompoop Harding was. Still, the slogan struck a chord with voters. After the war and the post-war struggles, Americans were ready to kick up their heels a bit and enjoy life. Harding was elected in a landslide, and the Roaring Twenties started getting noisy.

    Harding himself missed most of it, having had the good sense to die in August 1923 and thus escape an administration notable mainly for political scandal. But his successor, Calvin Coolidge, shared Harding’s political philosophy that the chief role of the government when it came to the economy was to foster business growth.
    Last edited by Eartha; 09-Dec-2010 at 12:59.

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: have the good sense to do sth.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eartha View Post
    Dear all,

    What's the meaning of "have the good sense to do sth."? What it says....*

    what does the phrase imply?

    Does "it" underlined in the sentence refer to the Roaring Twenties?

    Thanks in advance.

    Warren G. Harding campaigned for the U.S. presidency in 1920 using a slogan he coined himself: “A return to normalcy.” He had meant to say “normality,” which should give you some idea of what a nincompoop Harding was. Still, the slogan struck a chord with voters. After the war and the post-war struggles, Americans were ready to kick up their heels a bit and enjoy life. Harding was elected in a landslide, and the Roaring Twenties started getting noisy.

    Harding himself missed most of it, having had the good sense to die in August 1923 and thus escape an administration notable mainly for political scandal. But his successor, Calvin Coolidge, shared Harding’s political philosophy that the chief role of the government when it came to the economy was to foster business growth.
    * ...except when it's used jokingly, as here, about an event that is not a question of 'good sense'. This joke is not uncommon in history books when a death happened at an opportune or fortunate time.

    'The Roaring Twenties' is a period (and its Zeitgeist [a word used in English not just by show-offs like me () but by people who can't be bothered to say 'spirit of the times'; the Br Eng pronunciation is /zaɪtgaɪst/ {without the German affricate at the beginning}]), so it's referred to as 'it'; 'them' would sound very odd.

    The expression 'getting noisy' is also a wry reference to the name. The Roaring Twenties weren't just noisy; they were relieved (after the 'war to end all wars'), frivolous, morally disturbing for the older generation, permissive... see Roaring Twenties - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ).

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 09-Dec-2010 at 15:24.

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