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motico

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Thank you for checking the paragraph below:

My decision just became stronger after I had turned directly to one of the officials in the Ministry of Education in charge of that plan, complaining about the discrimination. The official's answer had been: "I'm sorry that it isn't possible to pay all the teachers higher salaries, however, the position you hold includes some advantages that can't be found in this special plan". As she hadn't elaborated, it is unclear what advantages she had had in mind. Personally, I tend to believe that those advantages simply do not exist…
 

motico

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I would appreciate if someone could check the paragraph below. Thank you.




My decision just became stronger after I had turned directly to one of the officials in the Ministry of Education in charge of that plan, complaining about the discrimination. The official's answer had been: "I'm sorry , it isn't possible to pay all the teachers higher salaries, however, the position you hold includes some advantages that can't be found in this special plan". As she hadn't elaborated, it is unclear what advantages she had had in mind. Personally, I tend to believe that those advantages simply do not exist…
 

billmcd

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Your first sentence doesn't make it clear that you are complaining, although the follow on sentences do. See some of my suggestions below.


My decision just became stronger after I had turned and complained about discrimination directly to one of the officials in the Ministry of Education in charge of that plan. [STRIKE]the[/STRIKE] The official's answer had been: "I'm sorry that it isn't possible to pay all the teachers higher salaries, however, the position you hold includes some advantages that can't be found in this special plan". [STRIKE]As[/STRIKE]Because she hadn't elaborated, it [STRIKE]is[/STRIKE]was unclear what advantages she had had in mind. Personally, I tend to believe that those advantages simply do not exist…
 
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crazYgeeK

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Why can't the "As" above be used instead of "Because" ?
 

motico

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Thank you!
Since all the verbs which come after "became" ("My decision just became stronger"), come in the Past Perfect Tense (because they had taken place before my decision became stronger…), why shouldn't "was" (according to your correction) in the sentence: "It was unclear what advantages she had had in mind" - be corrected to "had been"? ("It had been unclear…")
 

Raymott

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Thank you!
Since all the verbs which come after "became" ("My decision just became stronger"), come in the Past Perfect Tense (because they had taken place before my decision became stronger…), why shouldn't "was" (according to your correction) in the sentence: "It was unclear what advantages she had had in mind" - be corrected to "had been"? ("It had been unclear…")
To me, your paragraph could do without any instances of the past perfect. They are obtrusive and unnecessary.
We already know your decision became stronger after all this happened, because you've told us.
"My decision just became stronger after I ..."
In fact, using the past perfect for the official's answer - "The official's answer had been: ..." - brings up the possibility that this occurred before you turned to the official.
The official gave you an answer; your decision became stronger; you turned to the official to complain of the discrimination.

There is no rule saying that you need to use the past perfect to describe previous events simply because you've used the simple past once. If there was, there would be no way to tell the time sequence of all the clauses written in the past perfect.
 

Raymott

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Thank you for checking the paragraph below:

My decision just became stronger after I [STRIKE]had [/STRIKE]turned directly to one of the officials in the Ministry of Education in charge of that plan, complaining about the discrimination. The official's answer to my complaint [this establishes the time connection between your complaining and the official's answer] was: "I'm sorry that it isn't possible to pay all the teachers higher salaries, however, the position you hold includes some advantages that can't be found in this special plan". As she didn't elaborate, it is unclear what advantages she had in mind. Personally, I tend to believe that those advantages simply do not exist…

I can't see any ambiguity of timing here.
R.
 

billmcd

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"As" instead of "Because" is OK but I prefer "Because".
 

billmcd

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Thank you!

Since all the verbs which come after "became" ("My decision just became stronger"), come in the Past Perfect Tense (because they had taken place before my decision became stronger…), why shouldn't "was" (according to your correction) in the sentence: "It was unclear what advantages she had had in mind" - be corrected to "had been"? ("It had been unclear…")

Either the past perfect or simple past can be used when the cause and effect/result are close in time.
 

motico

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Either the past perfect or simple past can be used when the cause and effect/result are close in time.

I'm beginning to learn… Thank you, both of you, billmcd and Raymott!
 

tedtmc

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You use the past perfect tense only if you need to distinguish an action/event in the past before another action in the past.
There is no need to do that here so the simple past is more appropriate.
 

motico

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You use the past perfect tense only if you need to distinguish an action/event in the past before another action in the past.
There is no need to do that here so the simple past is more appropriate.
I understand. Thank you! The past simple has won the vast majority...
 
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