Re: virus: E-prime as a Tool Against Manipulation

Lee Daniel Crocker (
Mon, 31 Mar 1997 18:03:03 -0800 (PST)

> Here is an example (should I say "I provide an example below and if
> everything goes fine with my e-mail I hope you will be able to read it"?:-)

You mean "I hope you will succeed in reading it", that "be" implies a
static ability of your observer beyond the confines of the single act of
reading in question :)

> My first attempt to use the technique was on my favourite book:
> "Such-and-such IS a creative genius" it said about the author. E-prime
> stimulates probing questions: "according to whom he is a creative genius?".
> The note is unsigned. If the author said "I consider myself a creative
> genius" it would have sounded differently from: "such-and-such in
> this-and-that calls me/him a creative genius".

This is more explicit in Lojban as well: all judgment-words like "good"
or "smart" have an explicit place for a standard of judgment, which is
usually left unspecified for brevity; but its existence is implied by
the word's definition, and the fact that it is left unspecified is
unambiguously implied by the grammar. Similarly, observations imply
an observer, actions imply an actor, etc. The language lets you be as
inspecific as you want, but not ambiguous--when you choose not to
specify something, the grammar makes it quite explicit that you are
doing exactly that.

Lojban does have a word for "is identical to", but it is rarely used
as it is not needed to express most things we use "to be" for.

Lee Daniel Crocker <>  <>
"All inventions or works of authorship original to me, herein and past,
are placed irrevocably in the public domain, and may be used or modified
for any purpose, without permission, attribution, or notification."--LDC