Is legalese a good or bad way to communicate?

The Leveson Inquiry has provided a number of examples of how lawyers and judges communicate. The report, written by Lord Justice Leveson, was praised by The Guardian yesterday for its clarity:

Longer than Harry Potter, shorter than Proust, denser than Tolstoy. Brian Leveson’s report thumped into the world at just under 2,000 pages and just over a million words. What the Leveson report lacked in literary elegance, it made up for in detail and clarity.

However, the newspaper also found time to highlight chief inquiry lawyer Robert Jay QC’s formidable vocabulary. From ‘condign’ to ‘propinquity’, they created video of some of the “zingers” he unleashed:

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