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    #1

    Is 'have' necessary in the subjunctive mood here?

    Should I use 'have' in this sentence as in:

    This would not have happened in a public healthcare system, because profits are not the main objective.

    This would not happen in a public healthcare system, because profits are not the main objective.

    What is the main difference in meaning between using 'have happened' and just plain 'happen'?
    Last edited by Ulysses; 02-Dec-2009 at 18:11.

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    #2

    Re: Is 'have' necessary in the subjunctive mood here?

    A matter of reality/potentiality I presume. Using the perfect form 'have happened" implies that the event you're refering to has actually occured, whereas using a bare infinitve "happen" doesn't say much about whether the event in question has occured or not. It even conveys the impression that it has not occured, or might have occured elsewhere but not in this context.

    Hope you'll get other answers and more details on this.

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    #3

    Re: Is 'have' necessary in the subjunctive mood here?

    I would not go so far as to say that it "conveys the impression that it has not occurred". It could be theoretical or real. 'Have happened' can only refer to something that has happened (and finished), while 'happen' is not restricted- it could be past or present or theoretical.

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