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debian-startup.el question

I'm wondering what the rationale is for the following snippet of
code in debian-run-directories :

         (if debug-on-error
             (load-file file)
           (condition-case ()
               (load file nil)
             (error (message "Error while loading %s" file)))))

What is the intent behind running `load-file' if debug-on-error
is true?  `load-file' differs from `load' in that it does not
search the load-path; the full file path must be specified, which
is not the case here.

If others agree, I'll file a bug report against emacsen-common.

It shouldn't be an issue, except that the emacs21 prerelease I
have always thinks debug-on-error is true even when it isn't and
I always get the following error when running:

  (debian-startup 'emacs)

  Debugger entered--Lisp error: 
    (file-error "Cannot open load file" "/home/rhogee/00debian-vars")
  load("/home/rhogee/00debian-vars" nil nil t)



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