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Showing posts from May 28, 2017

The BUSKLAW June Newsletter: Is There a Moral Imperative to Plain English? Part 2: Conclusions

In last month's newsletter, we gave three examples of wordy, unclear, racist, pompous, and dull writing: as an opening sentence to a Bizarro-World version of Stephen King's The Gunslinger, as the beginning of a typical "big law firm"-drafted contract, and bureaucratic (including political) statements. We then compared these monsters of prose to their plain-English versions. But so what? Is poor literary, legal, business, and government writing merely a mote in the eye or something more sinister? 

Let's start with bureaucratese. The Trump Administration didn't invent it but surely has taken this dark art to new heights (or depths). And their penchant for typographical errors is a new twist. In this recent Business Insider article, 84% of 1,043 people surveyed said they would be less likely to trust the government if its communications contained spelling or grammatical mistakes. Specifically addressing Trump's notorious tweets containing such gems as "u…