[Grammar] the additional funds go towards establishing ... improved living conditions

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kadioguy

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(In the essay More than Just Trading)

... the additional funds go towards establishing health care programs, scholarships, better sanitation, and improved living conditions in the impoverished communities.

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I am wondering if "improving" also works:

... the additional funds go towards establishing ... improving living conditions in the impoverished communities.


What do you think?

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(Source)
https://paper.udn.com/udnpaper/POH0061/232033/web/
967ZBz5.jpg
 

tedmc

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You are right. That's a mistake in the article. There is no need for funds if living conditions are improved.
 
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It is not a mistake in the article, any more than "better sanitation" is a mistake.

Either "Improving living conditions" or "improved living conditions" could be used with the same meaning. I prefer "improved living conditions" as in the original. The sentence might be improved by deleting "establishing" to make the references more consistent:

... the additional funds go towards health-care programs, scholarships, better sanitation, and improved living conditions in the impoverished communities.
 

GoesStation

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Using "improving" in the original sentence would introduce a parallelism error.
 

kadioguy

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Using "improving" in the original sentence would introduce a parallelism error.

I think the underline parts are all nouns. :-?

... the additional funds go towards health-care programs, scholarships, better sanitation, and improving living conditions in the impoverished communities.


 

GoesStation

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I think the underline parts are all nouns. :-?

... the additional funds go towards health-care programs, scholarships, better sanitation, and improving living conditions in the impoverished communities.



Yes, that's fine. It's not the original sentence though. You removed "establishing".
 

kadioguy

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Yes, that's fine. It's not the original sentence though. You removed "establishing".
I also think the underline parts are all nouns, which are the objects of "establishing". I don't see a parallelism error.:-?

... the additional funds go towards establishing health care programs, scholarships, better sanitation, and improving living conditions in the impoverished communities.

 

SoothingDave

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If not a parallelism error strictly, "establishing improving" is terribly unnatural. "Establishing improved living conditions" is natural.
 

jutfrank

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I prefer improving. I can't see how improved might be preferred.

Using "improving" in the original sentence would introduce a parallelism error.

What parallelism error?

If not a parallelism error strictly, "establishing improving" is terribly unnatural. "Establishing improved living conditions" is natural.

I'm reading the sentence differently, where establishing goes only with healthcare programs. I don't think 'establishing scholarships' or 'establishing better sanitation' is what the writer means.

The sentence might be improved by deleting "establishing" to make the references more consistent

There's a semantic difference between the funds going towards healthcare programs (that are already established) and establishing healthcare programs. So if you remove establishing, you're possibly changing the meaning.
 

SoothingDave

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I'm reading the sentence differently, where establishing goes only with healthcare programs. I don't think 'establishing scholarships' or 'establishing better sanitation' is what the writer means.

This is where using a parallel structure would help. Establishing (x, y, z) or establishing X, verbing y, and verbing z. I am assuming the former was meant.
 

jutfrank

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This is where using a parallel structure would help. Establishing (x, y, z) or establishing X, verbing y, and verbing z. I am assuming the former was meant.

Right. As I said, I naturally assumed the latter. It's not entirely clear which interpretation is correct.
 

GoesStation

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I prefer improving. I can't see how improved might be preferred.

What parallelism error?

I'm reading the sentence differently….
Evidently. I read it like this:

The additional funds go towards establishing
  • health care programs
  • scholarships
  • better sanitation
  • improving living conditions
That's clearly a parallelism error. If you mentally move "establishing" into the first bullet item, you have what might be termed an infelicity rather than an error.
 

Tarheel

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the additional funds go towards establishing health care programs, scholarships, better sanitation ....

All those things improve living conditions. What (if anything) is added by the additional phrase?
 

jutfrank

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Evidently. I read it like this:

The additional funds go towards establishing
  • health care programs
  • scholarships
  • better sanitation
  • improving living conditions
That's clearly a parallelism error. If you mentally move "establishing" into the first bullet item, you have what might be termed an infelicity rather than an error.

Perhaps I'm reading it wrong. I think the only reason I read it otherwise involves the 'scholarship' part. I think it's more likely that the funds go toward paying for scholarships rather than toward establishing scholarships.

Would you explain how my reading produces an infelicity?
 

GoesStation

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Would you explain how my reading produces an infelicity?
I've arranged it as a bullet list to make it clearer to myself and anyone still following this discussion:

The additional funds go towards
  • establishing health care programs
  • scholarships
  • better sanitation
  • improving living conditions
It really doesn't look terrible in list format, but I don't care for the way it mixes -ing phrases with plainer noun phrases. The bullet list smoothes out what is otherwise, to me, a rather bumpy sentence.
 

jutfrank

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I don't care for the way it mixes -ing phrases with plainer noun phrases. The bullet list smoothes out what is otherwise, to me, a rather bumpy sentence.

Agreed.

Am I really the only member (apart from the OP, evidently) to read the sentence as GoesStation has it in post #16?
 

kadioguy

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Agreed.

Am I really the only member (apart from the OP, evidently) to read the sentence as GoesStation has it in post #16?

I am wondering about the blue part. Do you mean that I am the questioner, so it is impossible for me to read it in the way as GoesStation did in post #16? (Because you assume I knew little about it.) :shock:

Well, that may be true, but makes me a little sad.
 
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tedmc

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Establishing living conditions
Establishing improved living conditions

Both do not sound right to me.
The object "living conditions" does not have to come under "establishing".
If you are talking about parallelism, I think "improving" would fit better than improved, unless you strike out "establishing".
 

jutfrank

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I am wondering about the blue part. Do you mean that I am the questioner, so it is impossible for me to read it in the way as GoesStation did in post #16? (Because you assume I knew little about it.) :shock:

Well, that may be true, but makes me a little sad.

I don't understand. What makes you sad? Why?

I just assumed that you were reading the sentence as I was, and that that was the reason for the original post.
 
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