Monday, August 20, 2012

Winning battles, losing the war

"Today, we have more environmental groups and less forests, more 'protected areas' and less species, more carbon taxes and greater carbon emissions, more 'green' products and less green space."

- Rex Weyler, Nature: A system of systems.

Fewer forests, fewer species. "Less" qualifies mass nouns; "fewer", count nouns. Less sloppiness; fewer errors. Less pedantry; fewer readers. Sometimes, no matter how many times I correct grammatical confusions, I think I'm waging an unwinnable war. But I pick myself up and fight on. What else can one do?


byron smith said...

To avoid unnecessary confusion: I am a descriptivist grammarian. But who am I to tell prescriptivists where to shove their rules?

jessica smith said...

You are mad, but I love you.