I was born and raised in the USA and as such, the English language comes naturally to me. Sure, I see the idiosyncrasies such as 3 words spelled 3 different ways sounding exactly the same (their they’re there), 1 word with multiple meanings (rich, row, tear) or a word spelled the same, pronounced differently and meaning something different (lead, bow, ..) when that is done. Due to these traits, it has been said that English is one of the, if not the, toughest languages to really master in the world if it’s not your native language. (Note: this is a generalization and every situation is different) The basics are easy, but to really grasp the language takes real immersion into the culture.
I don’t really believe ES4 is a demon from the ancient world, of course. I’m afraid the JS-Hobbits are in trouble, though. As things stand today, Silverlight with C# or something akin (pushed via Windows Update) will raze the Shire-web, in spite of Gandalf-crock’s teachings.
I feel like the <pick your Latin language based country here> who learned enough English when I was young to ask how much my dinner cost, where the bathroom is and to call a cab to get back to my hotel. Finally, moving to the USA, living, working and playing with native English speakers I get the mastery of the language.
Having made that analogy, albeit a stretched one, I think I now have enough information to say, it depends.
I really do think that JS’s multi-paradigm nature means there is no one-true-subset for all to use (whether they like it or not)
Good luck on your journey, Grasshopper!