Csdp

Edgardg

Senior Member
Polish, Poland
Hi,
could you explain why the indefinite article was used before CSDP in the sentence below and not the definite one? After all, we know what policy we're refering to and what is the name of the policy.
"Why a Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) is Bad for Europe?"

Thank you
 
  • fenixpollo

    moderator
    American English
    I agree with you that it is not gramatically logical. I think the author was trying to take a shortcut to combine these two ideas into one sentence:
    ...why is a common security and defence policy bad for Europe?
    ...the argument against the CSDP.

    That's my theory. Hope it helps.
     

    Outsider

    Senior Member
    Portuguese (Portugal)
    I disagree that it is not logical. It is very logical, because the author is not referring to just one particular Common Security and Defence Policy for Europe, but to any and all possible Common Security and Defence Policies.
     

    fenixpollo

    moderator
    American English
    Maybe it's not logical to me because I am unfamiliar with the concept of a common defence and security policy. My only point of reference, therefore, is grammatical... and it seems strange to me to refer to a specific Policy (in all capital letters) with an indefinite article.
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    It is because common, security and defense are just adjectives of policy. A policy, that deals with these issues. There isn't one specific policy being referred to. For instance, if I said, "A common defense strategy would be good for them." I'm not talking about a specific strategy, but a hypothetical strategy that may or may not exist in different forms. If it was something that already existed in print, then I'd agree. "The current CSDP that we have is not working," but the author is referring to why "any and all" such policies are bad for Europe, not a specific one.

    Hope that helps,
    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Lol, Outsider... I assume you know the answer, and were just going for the joke...

    But, it would have to be "Why the Patriot Act for America?" Because the Patriot Act is something that exists, it is not a hypothetical concept, as policy is, in the first post. However, if you intend to say "Why have any sort of Patriot Act for America," then your sentence would be fine!

    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    Outsider

    Senior Member
    Portuguese (Portugal)
    But suppose some senator proposed an ammendment to the PA, and a journalist wrote an article saying that no PA of any kind was needed...
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Hi Outsider,

    Yes, in that case, then you would use "a." I orginally posted without that caveat, but then I changed it to include it, because I thought of that as well. Did you see that I said something similar to that? Perhaps you started to respond before I fixed it. You are right, in that instance... and I think that is what the author of this other article was intending... "why ANY CSDP is bad for Europe".

    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    Edgardg

    Senior Member
    Polish, Poland
    Thank you all for your answers. It is clear now. I've got another question, however. Could we drop the article in the sentence to make it sound more general?
    "Why Common Security and Defence Policy is Bad for Europe?"
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Edgar - No, you can't drop the article... but you could instead say, "Why Common Security and Defense Policies Are Bad For Europe." :) Which would then, in effect, drop the article, by making it unnecessary.

    Outside - Don't worry about it... it happens to the best of us! ;-)

    Hope that helps,
    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    Edgardg

    Senior Member
    Polish, Poland
    Hi Chat,
    why then is this sentence correct? Here no article is used? :confused:
    "European Union High Representative for Common Security and Defence Policy."
     

    Outsider

    Senior Member
    Portuguese (Portugal)
    It's the same as before. That title refers to a particular version of the EU's Common Security and Defence Policy, namely the one which is currently in effect. The high representative is not going to represent possible alternative policies.
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Hi Edgar,
    It's difficult to explain... but, the reason is because the word "representative" is singular, and in this context, it can only ever be singular, so the article is optional (though, if it were used, it be indefinite). In the previous example, it was dealing with a kind of policy... and while the word "policy" is used as a singular word grammatically, what the author is referring to is semantically plural, i.e. policies. But the word representative, as shown here, cannot be used in that way, so to omit the article is not a problem, because the meaning is understood.

    I'm not sure if that explains it or not, as I said, it is hard to explain! Let me know if that helps!

    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    Edgardg

    Senior Member
    Polish, Poland
    I see. So, a sentence: "Why Common Security and Defence Policy is Bad for Europe?" is correct. Here you're just refering to a particular version of that policy - am I right?
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Hi again Edgar,

    I think I misunderstood your post... I'm pretty burnt out right now, because I was answering lots of questions today! I thought you meant why doesn't "European Union High Representative" have an article... because that's a fine question, too. But, after reading Outsiders post, I think you probably meant what he answered. But, he answered well, so, I'm done here! ;-)

    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    Edgardg

    Senior Member
    Polish, Poland
    Jeff,
    your posts are very helpful, thank you :) I am asking all these questions because in Polish we don't have articles. That's why it is difficult to me to understand how they function.

    Best regards,
    Edgar
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    No, I don't think so Edgar. If you're referring to a particular, specific policy, then it would need "the" infront of it. But like I said, I'm pretty burnt out right now... so, I think I need to leave the computer for a while and then come back fresh later! :)
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Hi again Edgar,

    Yes, I can imagine how that would make things VERY difficult! :)

    Did you understand what I meant about the grammatically plural vs. semantically plural? Because that might not have applied to your question, but it often can apply to similar questions.

    I'm glad I could help!! You're welcome!

    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    Outsider

    Senior Member
    Portuguese (Portugal)
    I see. So, a sentence: "Why Common Security and Defence Policy is Bad for Europe?" is correct. Here you're just refering to a particular version of that policy - am I right?
    I'm not a native speaker, but that title sounds ambiguous, or even wrong, to me. I would rather say "Why the Common Security and Defence Policy is Bad for Europe", if you wish to refer to the current version of the policy.
     

    Edgardg

    Senior Member
    Polish, Poland
    Did you understand what I meant about the grammatically plural vs. semantically plural? Because that might not have applied to your question, but it often can apply to similar questions.
    I think I understand. Until I see another sentece and my mind goes blank :D.
    Thank you again.

    Best regards
    Edgar
     

    Edgardg

    Senior Member
    Polish, Poland
    I'm not a native speaker, but that title sounds ambiguous, or even wrong, to me. I would rather say "Why the Common Security and Defence Policy is Bad for Europe", if you wish to refer to the current version of the policy.
    Thanks, Outsider!

    Best regards
    Edgar
     

    chat9998

    Senior Member
    English, US
    Glad to hear it Edgar! :D

    If your mind does go blank... don't hesitate to post again, or send me a PM!

    You're certainly welcome!
    God bless,
    Jeff
     

    fenixpollo

    moderator
    American English
    "Why Common Security and Defence Policy is Bad for Europe?"
    This is an article title, correct? There is a trend in the English-speaking (especially American) media to remove all articles, and even conjunctions, from the titles of newspaper or magazine articles.

    The reason? To save space. It is not gramatically correct, but it is accepted for story titles.
     

    Outsider

    Senior Member
    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Hi Chat,
    why then is this sentence correct? Here no article is used? :confused:
    "European Union High Representative for Common Security and Defence Policy."
    I would like to add a remark about this example. Given what we have told you in this thread, you might expect the phrase to be "European Union High Representative for the Common Security and Defence Policy". However, you do not use the definite article after a preposition, in this kind of construction.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I'm confused by the confusion.
    A reference to a specific policy with capital letters is the Common ......
    A reference to policy in general, with no capital letters, is a common .......
    In a sentence without an article, for example "... why common ....." I suggest it ought to be in lower case because the sentence must be talking about a generic policy, not a specific policy.
    People are careless, of course.
    why then is this sentence correct? Here no article is used? :confused:
    "European Union High Representative for Common Security and Defence Policy."
    As far as I am concerned, it is not a sentence. It is a title. Titles do not have to be grammatical:)
     

    Edgardg

    Senior Member
    Polish, Poland
    I'm confused by the confusion.
    A reference to a specific policy with capital letters is the Common ......
    A reference to policy in general, with no capital letters, is a common .......
    In a sentence without an article, for example "... why common ....." I suggest it ought to be in lower case because the sentence must be talking about a generic policy, not a specific policy.
    People are careless, of course.
    As far as I am concerned, it is not a sentence. It is a title. Titles do not have to be grammatical:)
    Hi Panjandrum,
    In a sentence with an indefinite article ("Why a common security and defence policy is Bad for Europe"), is should be all in lower case?
    But then I found this sentence in upper case in a very reputable site.
    :confused:



     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Hi Panjandrum,
    In a sentence with an indefinite article ("Why a common security and defence policy is Bad for Europe"), is should be all in lower case?
    But then I found this sentence in upper case in a very reputable site.
    :confused:
    Good example:)
    It is probably treason to suggest so, but even Hansard may have an occasional typographical lapse:D

    Looking at the web examples, there is great deal of variation in the way common security and defence policy is presented. Some of the examples are texts where the concept of a common security and defence policy is being discussed. The writer needs to refer to this concept frequently and wishes to avoid writing out the words in full so he decides to use CSDP as an initialism. I think I would have difficulty introducing this without writing "... a Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) ..." the first time.
     

    maxiogee

    Banned
    English
    Hi Chat,
    why then is this sentence correct? Here no article is used? :confused:
    "European Union High Representative for Common Security and Defence Policy."
    Because "Policy" is a fluid thing. The High Representative is not a representative for "The CSDP" as a written document, but for the 'concept' - policy in this case would be best understood as 'matters'.
     

    maxiogee

    Banned
    English
    Good example:)
    It is probably treason to suggest so, but even Hansard may have an occasional typographical lapse:D
    Off topic but for information.
    I think I'm right in saying that, regardless of what a Member actually says in the House, what appears in Hansard is accepted as what was said. So if a member thinks he heard the Hon Member for Qwerty say ABC, and Hansard shows the Hon Member said ZYX, then XYZ is what was said.
     

    cheshire

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    (1) Why do we need a United Nations?
    (2) Why do we need a united nations?

    If I mean "any united nations" which shood I choose? Even if we all know that there is only one United Nations, is it OK to say like above sentences?
     
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