Not stupid, just Canadian

March 28th, 2009
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“(competition policy)… constitutes a reaffirmation of the government’s endorsation of the fundamental ‘legitimacy’ of the market in a pluralist society.” –

Sylvia Ostry, Empire Club lecture, 1975

Finding this was like playing a linguistic archeologist and turning up a paleo-stupidism. I’d been reading through this interesting collection of speeches, kind of a time capsule of the era when I first got interested in politics when I came by this odd usage by Dr. Ostry. There is after all the perfectly proper word “endorsement”.

From its strange sound I assumed right away “endorsation” was incorrect jargon. For what it’s worth, spell check doesn’t like it. Then looking it up on the net I discovered this was understood to be correct Canadian(!) usage. Apparently it’s in the Canadian Oxford dictionary. Wow. Too bad I still think it’s wrong, Canadian or not.

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By John Weissenberger