Playing “taboo” with jargon

Eliezer Yudkovsky has an excellent suggestion in this blog post. The idea is that clarity in scientific or philosophical discussions would be enhanced if participants were not allowed to use certain terms. For economists, for instance, this could include terms such as “welfare” or “efficiency”. Instead of “welfare”, you would have to use the operational definition of welfare you have in mind, and so on. I endorse this suggestion heartily, mindful that it would make defenders of elegance in verbal expression cringe. Most often, what intended-to-be-taken-seriously speech lacks is a manic devotion to exactitude.

ADDENDUM: hat tip to Ole Rogeberg on Google+.

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