Prohibiting Obscurant Speech With E-Prime (E')

be; being; been; am; is; isn’t; are; aren’t; was; wasn’t; were; weren’t;

Contractions formed from a pronoun and a form of to be:
I’m; you’re; we’re; they’re; he’s; she’s; it’s; there’s; here’s; where’s; how’s; what’s; who’s; that’s;

Contractions of to be found in nonstandard dialects of English, such as the following:
ain’t; hain’t (when derived from ain’t rather than haven’t); whatcha (derived from what are you); yer (when derived from you are rather than your).

The following words, do not derive from forms of to be. Some of these serve similar grammatical functions (see auxiliary verbs).
become; has; have; having; had (I’ve; you’ve); do; does; doing; did; can; could; will; would (they’d); shall; should; ought; may; might; must; remain; equal.

In theory I should state Propertarianism in E’. But it’s incredibly burdensome and there is a difference between writing laws and writing philosophy. (Yes, that’s a lame excuse. I may have to write the primary statements in E’ and let the historical examples sit in ordinary language. )

Adam Voight
You should write your theorems in “Lojban” or some other ideal language. While Lojban’s vocabulary is simply chosen from the world’s dominant languages, its grammar is supposed to reflect logic itself. At least that’s what wikipedia says.

Curt Doolittle
I think I’ll more likely choose to just find a way to annotate which context of verb to be I’m using, and avoid the two or three that are deceptive.

Adam Voight You could publish it in a “facing-page” translation.

Curt Doolittle Interesting.
That’s close. A good idea. In keeping with the “48 Laws of Power” structure, It might be worth stating the central principle first in common language and then in E’…. Hmmm. I really like that Idea. Doesn’t burden the user but through repetition, maintains readability, and makes the point clear through contrast.


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