Just a quick intercession here to say that I would never transliterate into English the name of the Japanese religion referenced in this thread as "Shin Tao" in any of the transliteration systems that I've encountered.
Also, for most linguists, English is far from being a phonetic language.
Hope that helps,
I agree that English is not phonetic entirely. Never claimed it was. I argue the reason Shinto is spelled the way it is is for the sake of phonetics. So it can be written in English, so English speakers may pronounce it as correctly humanly possible.
I now understand that it is not normally translated as "shin-tao". From my readings, and the references I provided, you can see why I never thought that spelling it "shin-tao" would cause such a stink.LOL
I quoted my reference for why I said it that way.
And, I think your statement is the proper conclusion to the issue. thanks.