Eric Armstrong wrote:
> 
> When you access ENV or execute a subshell, ruby
> gives you a warning if any parent directory in
> any part of your search path is world-writable.
> ...
> The workaround is to code a semi-colon at the
> end of the command, so:
> 
>    sh "some command;"
> or
>    value = `some command;`
> 
> But the unfortunate side effect is that a command
> failure gets swallowed as well, and that keeps
> Rake from aborting when it rightfully should.
> 
It turns out I was (happily) dead wrong about that.
Either of the following work just fine:

if ($? != 0) then
    ...
    exit
end

-or-

require 'English'
if ($CHILD_STATUS != 0) then
   ...
   exit
endif