Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Friday, March 17, 2017

Comma Ca Va

Oxford commas are not redundant, as the dairy industry in Maine is finding out.
Maine's law says the following activities do not qualify for overtime pay: "The canning, processing, preserving, freezing, drying, marketing, storing, packing for shipment or distribution of: (1) Agricultural produce; (2) Meat and fish products; and (3) Perishable foods."

The drivers said the lack of a comma between "shipment" and "or distribution" meant the legislation applied only to the single activity of "packing", rather than to "packing" and "distribution" as two separate activities.

And because drivers distribute the goods, but do not pack them, they argued they were therefore eligible for overtime pay - backdated over several years.
The court, while not agreeing, found that the provision was ambiguous and, therefore, the drivers win.


3383 said...

I prefer the Oxford comma, mostly for the clarity.

I also still use "it's" to indicate the possessive, although I understand that rule has changed. Not my fault.

dinthebeast said...

As a former delivery driver who worked really long hours for no overtime for years (they paid us by the day) I salute these drivers for winning. I'm still of the opinion that driving a 19,000 pound vehicle through city traffic is worth more than minimum wage...

-Doug in Oakland

Anonymous said...

It's not ambiguous using symbolic logic.

Thomas Ten Bears said...

"Packaging" is "packing for shipment."

Ones and zeros, boiled down.