So, do you understand it?

“I was somewhat critical, and unapologetically so, of the way in which the report of Tina Pugh was written,” he told the court.
“Reports by experts are not written solely for the benefit of other professionals, the advocates and the judge. The parents and other litigants need to understand what is being said and why.”
“There were passages in Tina Pugh’s report which were written in language which made their meaning quite opaque. I suspect as far as (the woman) was concerned, these passages might just as well have been written in a foreign language.”
The judge quoted a passage in which she described the relationship the woman had with a man who had lived with the children’s mother.
The social worker had written: “I do not intend to address the couple’s relationship suffice it to say it is imbued with ambivalence: both having many commonalities emanating from their histories that create what could be a long lasting connection or alternative relationship that are a reflection of this.”
Judge Lea said: “I very much doubt that (the woman) would understand on reading this passage what is being said. I think I know what Tina Pugh is saying but her meaning is obscured by the language she uses to express it.”
He went on to quote another passage: “In narrowing down the issues (the woman) clearly believes that paternity issues had a significant interplay on (the woman’s son’s) ability to say no to the mother.”

The reason the language is so bad in much of academia is because they’re not actually trying to communicate meaning. Rather, to communicate tribal membership: we’re all the good people who use this sort of language.

But when interacting with Muggles that rather misses the point of nominally using the same language, doesn’t it?

11 thoughts on “So, do you understand it?”

  1. On graduation hit them on the head with an old copy of the Oxford Concise and tell them they are servants of the people they work with, not high priests of an authoritarian cult.

  2. Could be tribal, sure. Could also just be the usual faux-formal writing style, using big words to try to hide a lack of content, skill and/or confidence.

  3. With the exception of the advanced “hard” sciences and mathematics, if you can’t explain your case in simple language you frankly do not understand your subject…

  4. …or alternative relationship that are a reflection of this.

    That would be …or an alternative relationship that is a reflection of this.

    3/10 see me. Is this Tina Pugh an English person?

  5. Alos, interplay. The judge was implying, “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.” In particular, it seems difficult, on solid chronological and biological grounds, to see how disobedience can have any effect on issues around a child’s paternity.

  6. The judge is a twerp who thinks that “impact” means the same as “effect”. It has come to imply the same thing among the ignorant and unlettered but people who know any physics know otherwise. They might even guess at a reason, to wit the i & u can’t confidently distinguish “effect” from “affect” and so dodge the problem by wittering about “impact”.

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