John Cowan:
> Tom Tadfor Little scripsit:
> > I appreciate [English orthography] as it is myself. The rationale for
> > changing it is usually to help learners (and with the steady rise of
> > English-as-second-language in the world's population, this is a very
> > significant matter).
> There is also a hidden cost: English-speakers spend about 12-18 months
> extra learning to read and write (especially read) their language.
> That involves one of two choices: start early (not the best thing from
> an early childhood ed perspective), or remain permanently behind.

And even for those children who at a very young age are keen to learn
to read, they still irrecoverably lose 12-18 months' worth of reading
and the education and pleasure that would follow from that.

Since I became a parent I have changed from being a strong supporter
of standard English orthography to coming to view it as a form of

In the english-speaking world there is given over to trying to help
children learn English spelling a vast academic--educational--
political apparatus and concomitant economic resources that are simply
absent from most other cultures (though Japanese and, I presume, Chinese,
seem to be at least as bad) because they are simply unnecessary.