Policies and behavior are . . .

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jamesadrian
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Policies and behavior are . . .

Post by jamesadrian » Sat May 04, 2019 2:34 am

The phrase "policies and behavior are . . . " seems odd to me because the word "policies" is plural while the word "behavior" is singular. There are two things here, so the word "are" seems appropriate, but must the two words that are both be plural?

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Jim Adrian

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Firefox
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Re: Policies and behavior are . . .

Post by Firefox » Sun May 05, 2019 4:22 am

It would be helpful to have some CONTEXT :!: :mrgreen:

Like, can we see the full sentence. Or even paragraph. It makes a difference.

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Re: Policies and behavior are . . .

Post by Firefox » Sun May 05, 2019 4:24 am

However, on the face of it there is nothing wrong with "policies and behavior are...".

The word behavior is an uncountable noun and seldom used in the plural.

jamesadrian
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Re: Policies and behavior are . . .

Post by jamesadrian » Sun May 05, 2019 10:57 am

Here is the whole thing:

Policies and behavior are perfected by caring about the wellbeing and happiness of everybody.

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Jim Adrian

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Re: Policies and behavior are . . .

Post by Joe » Sun May 05, 2019 11:46 am

jamesadrian wrote:
Sun May 05, 2019 10:57 am
Policies and behavior are perfected by caring about the wellbeing and happiness of everybody. :ok:
That looks/sounds okay Jim.

It would certainly be wrong to say: "Policies and behavior is perfected..." :nok:
"We are not wholly bad or good, who live our lives under Milk Wood :-| " — Dylan Thomas, Under Milk Wood

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jamesadrian
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Re: Policies and behavior are . . .

Post by jamesadrian » Sun May 05, 2019 7:05 pm

In the past, I have rearranged whole paragraphs to get such sentences in the form of either two plural words or two singular words. I would do this in an attempt to avoid my uneasiness about not knowing rigorous rule about this. I wonder if one exists.

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Jim Adrian

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Re: Policies and behavior are . . .

Post by Firefox » Mon May 06, 2019 3:13 am

There are no real "rules" about this. A lot of it is a question of common sense. One thing you could consider is saying "policy" instead of "policies". You would then have two uncountable nouns which are inherently singular. Then both of the following would be "grammatically" correct:

Policy and behavior are perfected by caring about the well being and happiness of everybody.
Policy and behavior is perfected by caring about the well being and happiness of everybody. [looking at policy & behavior as one concept]

Or you might consider:

Caring about people's well being improves policy and behavior.

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