Run-on examples

For a non-native speaker, Wolfgang Münchau, the Financial Times columnist, has an impeccable command of English. One does see his native German shining through in spots, though. Take the following use of “for example” that appeared in his most recent piece:

“In the absence of political leadership, they apply the rules as they are, for example when they recommend brutal and politically suicidal wage cuts in Latvia, when they apply accession criteria to the eurozone with no flexibility, or when they produce ineffective financial regulation.” Although not incorrect, the hard transition to “for example” in this sentence strikes me as particularly German.

The conclusion of the column, as well, is a bit funny: “But I never thought that we would ever celebrate a central bank as the only political institution that really works in Europe. How did we get there?” Shouldn’t this read, “How did we get here?”

One thought on “Run-on examples”

  1. I believe that you can learn a foreign language very well but that there is no way that you can get to the level of a native speaker. And you example is so eloquent in this regard. There will always be some phrase structures take you use from your mother tongue.

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