What I've known so far concerning the usage of past perfect is that this tense will be used when someone did something and he/she wants to talk about it in the present or the event itself still holds in the present (that'd be my best definition of its usage).

However, there was a sentence from my book that has confused me:

That argument is out-of-date in a modern technology. Our position has always been that we should encourage technology.

I feel there's a missing word there i.e.

Our position has always been [something] that we should encourage technology.

Why did the writer leave that something out if my prediction is correct? Did he/she try to introduce their position since x?

  • In the present tense we could write "our position is that we should encourage technology". What extra word would you insert there?
    – The Photon
    Commented Oct 6, 2021 at 3:18
  • @ThePhoton I'm not sure, that's my point of my question. I would put an adjective there and then put that bla bla to exlain the detail. Or perhaps verb? However, I'm not sure.
    – user516076
    Commented Oct 6, 2021 at 3:47
  • It's fine. The content clause is complement of "been" in its specifying sense.
    – BillJ
    Commented Oct 6, 2021 at 7:21

1 Answer 1


A position is a noun, so after "Our position has always been...", we should expect a noun, the same way as if it were the simpler, "Our position is..."

The words, "that we should encourage technology" form a noun clause, which means it's a noun.

So your sentence is correct as is, and nothing is missing.

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