Crack drafting squad
A spotter’s guide to the men and women of finance.
Amongst the jobsworths, the slouches, the vain contrarians and jouneypersons, there are some ninjas. It is as well to recognise them when you see them. These are the crack drafting squads — paramilitary-trained professional vocabulary marksmen and markswomen of the financial services industry. They will stop at nothing to convolute the simple and, by heroic over-description, render the mundane impenetrable.
The best are those in the employ of ISDA. They came up with the quintuple negative in the definition of Indemnifiable Taxes after all. The JC will never tire of marvelling at how comprehensively ISDA’s crack drafting squad™ can, through its sheer, collected, anxiety, render basic concepts as vast, undulating tracts of unintelligible text: a grand, entropic, soggy nothingness.
Actually, we can and do tire of it. But the mental effort of feigning respect and affection for the squad’s quaint syntactical idioms — learning to love the monster, so to speak; a form of self-inflicted Stockholm syndrome — has its benefits. For if you can’t laugh, all hope is lost.
But for sheer weight of volume and multi-lingual capability, the European Commission’s vicious mercenary wordsmiths — they who contrived “and, as the case may be, or”, after all — run the derivatives guys pretty close.
The crack drafting squad™s, listed
- ISDA’s crack drafting squad™
- European Commission’s crack drafting squad™
- ISLA’s crack drafting squad™
- ICMA’s crack drafting squad™