The Economist is the well-known and acclaimed magazine newspaper(!) about…well, economics…that is published in the UK. One of its proudest principles is how it likes to take stands on issues and argue in favor of or against topics. It is read by important, influential, and intelligent people throughout the world. So as I was thumbing through it the other day, I decided to pop over to the website and have a gander at some archives, just to get myself up to speed with all that is moving and shaking in the world of economics.
One of the viewpoints it is currently advocating on its website is proper English grammar in the form of the style book given to all of its journalists, written by John Grimond. I found it interesting to get such a close look at grammar and word choice from a source that is unabashedly British. Then I stumbled upon the section titled “Americanisms” found here:
Regular readers of this blog know that I am a man who appreciates panache and creativity while at the same time maintaining that all should fall into the boundaries of an organized and consistent system to ensure comprehension by the readers. In English, you can play with structures and sentence length to provide different rhythms and change things up. Don’t let your language become stale! Mix up how you phrase things to keep the reader interested. And so on and so forth. I would never proclaim myself an expert and I certainly believe that all are entitled to their own opinions, provided they can support them with examples. Mr. Grimond, on the other hand, just hates Americans.
Parts of this page read to me like a “Greatest Hits in Condescension”, but I also find in quite valuable in marking the differences between British and American English.