Over on Thought Experiments, Bryan seems to have got a spot of false memory syndrome. The semicolon as the most complete cessation is a novel idea, the kind of thing that might seem a major insight to a mind in the grip of a psychotropic substance or two (so yes I might have said it) - but I'm pretty sure I've always had a reasonable grasp of the semicolon and its uses, such as they are. It's a handy thing in correct English, but otherwise I really prefer the Laurence Sterne system: dashes of various lengths, full stops and plenty of exclamation marks. That covers most eventualities in informal discourse - and could well be what we end up with anyway. And why not?
I now retire from the punctation minefield, pausing only to salute the heroic achievement of the Cliveden snail. Hang in there, Papillifera papillaris!