Do these verbs meet each other? (cheat...reported...were)

Doggie doggie

Senior Member
Mr. Liu, the labor advocate, said his group had done a study of 210 factories in the Pearl River Delta and the Yangtze River Delta that showed 90 percent of those factories cheat on overtime: they often reported employees as working eight-hour days even when the hours were much longer.---taken from the NYT

Dear all,

Could you please tell me whether those verbs( cheat, reported and were) meet each other. To me, they should be "cheat, report, and are" since those actions haven't accompolished. That is, those factories still cheat and report false data. Do you agree with me? Thanks.

  • MilkyBarKid

    Senior Member
    British English
    had done a study of 210 factories

    and that study indicated (Past) that the records examined as part of that study (in the past) showed that companies reported...but hours (they actually worked) were much longer.

    They cheated then, and there is no reason they are not still doing this - it was true then, is still true, and unless something is done, will continue to be true - hence, he uses the Present tense to report this fact: managers of factories cheat when calculating overtime due to workers.
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