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re: I think it might be better to strengthen it and say that the
    default for :USE is identical to the use list of the USER package.
    Does anyone agree?

I agree, sort of.  Especially since one of the motivating factors for 
this proposal was that some Lucid 2.1 user's were complaining that 
"things" look a lot different from the USER package than from a 
user-created package.

The only question is whether or not you really want the default to be
sensitive to subsequent alterations of USER's :use list.  As mentioned
in the Discussion section of the proposal, Lucid's implementation
exposes the default as the value of a global variable, which happens
to be a copy of the initial :use list of USER; but subsequent changes 
to USER have no affect on this global variable.

-- JonL --