Bad English: Orwell’s principles and Parliamentary draftspersons
Orwell’s principles of good English could profitably be adopted by Parliamentary draftspersons, who do not need to be legally qualified, for example:
Avoid dead metaphors
Avoid foreign words
What am I trying to say?
What words will express it?
What image or idiom will make it clearer?
Is this a fresh image?
Could I put it more shortly?
Have I said anything avoidably ugly?
Avoid familiar metaphors
Avoid words which the averagely intelligent person cannot understand
Use short words
Use active not passive tense
Thoughts only have meaning if they are expressed in such a way that they can be understood
Theory constructed in an obscure way is meaningless to readers and makes sense, if at all, only to the writer
Bad writers are nearly always haunted by the notion that Latin and Greek words are grander than Saxon ones.