Usage and Grammar

Q. The CMOS rules (8.21) point to “secretary of state” but “Secretary of State Clinton” or “Secretary Clinton,” so I am using “president” but “President Kirchner.” But shouldn’t I capitalize “the Pinochet Dictatorship”? and what about “the Kirchner Administration” and “the Kirchner Government”? Rather than “generic terms associated with governmental bodies” (8.64), they all form an important part of recent Latin American history, like the Mexican Revolution. In addition, they “follow a name and are used as an accepted part of the name” (8.50).

A. While administration and government are commonly capped in sources that don’t follow CMOS, to my eye “the Pinochet Dictatorship” (capped) looks bizarre. Can you imagine it stamped at the top of letterhead stationery or etched in gold leaf on a door? If so, then go ahead and cap it (even though Chicago wouldn’t).