Re: Negative Summary of the Split Proposal
On Jul 03, Richard Stallman wrote:
> I think that a question "Would you like to see non-free packages?"
> would be an ineffective solution, since only truly committed idealists
> like me would answer no. It would be like asking children, "Should we
> offer you some candy before your meal?"
I see, so it's not enough to actually offer the users a choice, it's
also necessary to brainwash them into making the choice you prefer,
then offer them a meaningless "choice" that you've intimidated them
echo "Do you want to suffer eternal damnation and add non-free to your
(Maybe you can find a version of cat that will do this procedure
The entire point of a choice is that everyone gets to decide, based on
their value system, what they want to do. If you don't want someone
to make a particular choice, at least be intellectually honest and not
offer them the choice.
For example, I have a choice whether or not to smoke (I don't, but the
example works: I think we all agree that smoking and using non-free
software are bad for us). Everyone from Bill Clinton to my mother (in
order of increasing moral credibility) wants me to not smoke. The
government, if I choose to smoke, will spend about 3/4 of the money I
spend on cigarettes to tell me not to smoke (or build highways and
subsidize people who are priced out of jobs by the minimum wage). In
RMS's world, instead of me being presented with the choice of smoking,
I have to act like I'm going to buy alcohol in Utah: I have to
specifically ask someone, "Can I get cigarettes here?" There are no
ads, the store can't volunteer the information that it sells
cigarettes, etc. No doubt before he hands me the cigarettes the clerk
has to tell me in a serious tone that cigarettes are going to kill
me. This is like an existentialist version of RMS's ideal world.
It would be more intellectually honest to say, "In RMS world, you
can't use non-free software. Go to ESR world." (Or, "In Utah, you
can't drink. Go to Nevada.") Don't pretend people have a choice once
you've brainwashed them into not choosing the unfavored option.
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