Pulped fiction not so largely good

4th November 2005 at 00:00
The Diary is not surprised to hear that last week's white paper on education had to be pulped and a new version printed overnight because of poor spelling and punctuation. The style of what remains is still pretty awful.

Just look at the first sentence of the Prime Minister's foreword: "We are at an historic turning point: we now have an education system that is largely good, after eight years of investment and reform, which has overcome many of the chronic inherited problems of the past."

Which noun governs that verb "has overcome," Mr Blair? Is it the distant "education system"? In that case, surely "and" is needed before the "which"

to make the meaning clear. Or is it the two nouns, "investment and reform"? In which case - oh well, never mind. We should probably be grateful, in this era of text-messaging, that there are any verbs at all.

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