Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Of Sinecures and Miasmas

Of Sinecures and Miasmas

From: g87
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 2:42 PM
Subject: Fw: Of Sinecures and Miasmas

Here you see the academic / political person in me.....
From: g87
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 2:39 PM
Subject: Of Sinecures and Miasmas

Of Sinecures and Miasmas

Teachers' salaries will improve Keith Parsons Letters 31/8 when inept ones on a cushy sinecure can be sacked. The opposition Shadow Education Minister Chris Pyne will plainly ensure the better pedagogues can be appropriately remunerated.
Perhaps Pyne will ensure also that the dictionaries will somehow reconfigure that antagonist word sinecure - which means opposite things. You need to assume what I mean by the context.
That is no way to run the language
Maybe the left's latest abused toy - word mysogyny can also be allowed it's original meaning.
After all - Gillard and her acolytes may not be so keen to repeat this mantra – like pathetic, puerile, miasma.

By the way - there are too many antagonyms: words that have opposite meanings!
Sinecure and sanction are but two; the latter often sadly used by those with legal training.
What did Shakespeare say about the lawyers?
Geoff Seidner
East St Kilda
03 9525 9299

mi·as·ma (m-zm, m-)
n. pl. mi·as·mas or mi·as·ma·ta (-m-t)
1. A noxious atmosphere or influence: "The family affection, the family expectations, seemed to permeate the atmosphere . . . like a coiling miasma" (Louis Auchincloss).
a. A poisonous atmosphere formerly thought to rise from swamps and putrid matter and cause disease.
b. A thick vaporous atmosphere or emanation: wreathed in a miasma of cigarette smoke.

Teachers' low salaries

GLENDA Ellis says teaching should be recognised as a profession but also a vocation (Letters, 29/10).
The original meaning of vocation was for people such as priests who were paid a pittance. By all means attract people who would regard it as a vocation, but pay them properly.
When I was at school in the 1960s, teaching attracted top people perhaps influenced by the fact that teaching scholarships were the only way to a free university education. The salary was relatively modest, but acceptable.
However, in 30 years from the 1970s, salaries plummeted by about a third measured against average weekly earnings. Therein lies the biggest problem in attracting recruits.
Whenever Julia Gillard gushes about how she admires and respects teachers, she changes the subject when salaries are mentioned.
With any job, salary, working conditions and career prospects are paramount. Teaching loses out on all counts.
Keith Parsons, Newcastle, NSW

World English Dictionary
sinecure  (ˈsaɪnɪˌkjʊə) 
— n
1.a paid office or post involving minimal duties
2.a Church benefice to which no spiritual or pastoral charge isattached
[C17: from Medieval Latin phrase ( beneficium sine cūrā (benefice) without cure (of souls), from Latin sine  without +cūra  cure, care]
— n
— n


Example Sentences
  • As several thousand pounds arc seized each week, it is to be presumedthat their office is not a sinecure.
  • It may be that he shall have a sinecure for life if the students choose tovote their disapproval with their feet.


Sinecure is a TOEFL word you need to know.
So is therein. Does it mean:
in that matter or circumstance
pertaining to a united group created by law having a continuous independent existence and powers and liabilities distinct from those of its members

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