[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Negative Summary of the Split Proposal

Joseph Carter <knghtbrd@debian.org> writes:

> choices.  What's the point of people choosing free software if they
> didn't choose it but rather had it forced on them?
> People call you a socialist, this is exactly why.  Who are you to tell me

Whoa!  This is not at all correct.  Not even close.  For your
convenience, here is the definition of socialist:

       adj 1: of or relating to or promoting or practicing socialism;
              "socialist theory"; "socialist realism"; "a socialist
              party" [syn: {socialistic}]
       2: advocating or following the socialist principles;
          "socialistic government" [syn: {socialistic}] [ant: {capitalistic}]
       n : a political advocate of socialism

And, thus, of socialism:

       n 1: a political theory advocating state ownership of industry
       2: an economic system based on state ownership of capital [syn:
           {socialist economy}] [ant: {capitalism}]

Now, just where is Mr. Stallman advocating state ownership of
anything?!  He's trying to advocate FREE software, not software
controlled by governments!

> what my morals should be?  Give me the information and the tools, then

Please don't go down that path.  Simple logic indicates that this
ethical relativist argument is not at all valid.  Without going into a 
formal proof, let me use two textbook examples which ought to prove
the point:

 1. slavery
 2. Nazi-ism

In both of these cases, we (rightly!) reserve the right to criticize
the people holding those particular ethics as incorrect.  Thus
Stallman has every right to criticize your ethics as incorrect (and
you his).  The rest of your message, in fact, goes on to critize his
ethics, yet you seek to critize him for similar criticisms of yours.
This seems at least a tad hypocritical, if not significantly so.

> Consider me corrupt if you like because I won't suffer when a suitable
> free program isn't available to replace the non-free one works for now
> until the free program works, I won't be hurt by it.  However when you
> try to take away my right to choose that non-free package because you
> don't like me using it, I get annoyed.  You don't have to go out of your

I don't see him trying to revoke any "right".  He's telling you that
you are making the ethically wrong choice, not that the choice is not
yours to make.  You are given the choice, and perhaps you choose in
error; but what use would there be for ethics if there were no choices 

>   I check the files in /usr/doc---nope, no references.
>   I check apt's configuration file---nope, nothing.
>   I check the web pages---no references, search function returns nothing.
>   I nose around the ftp site with my nice free ftp client, nothing.
>   At this point I'm thinking where the hell is netscape?  Why did Debian

Well this is a particularly bad example since all one has to do is go
to www.netscape.com and get a copy.

> What you then asked us to do is exactly what you said you wouldn't ask us
> to do.  You want us to STOP supporting non-free software.  You want us to

We never have supported non-free software, and as long as I'm a part
of the project, we won't.  Note that even you agree that non-free
software is not a part of Debian.  If this is the case, how do you
think we are supporting it?

Note that we do not support non-free software; the Contract explicitly 
acknowledges that it is not a prt of Debian.  We merely acknowledge
that it is possible to use non-free software on Debian ("support its use").

> You want us to hide non-free software from our users.  Doing so would be
> a direct violation of our social contract which says we'd  support our
> users' use of non-free software.  Of course we could change the social

Nowhere does it say that we have to stick a sign in people's faces
indicating that non-free software is straight ahead.

> contract.  We could, but I don't want to stick around to clean up the PR
> nightmare it would create the second someone like slashdot or LWN reports

Sheesh!  Again a marketdroid argument.  When are we going to stop
seeing things like this?  Are you seriously advocating that we let
marketing take control rather than quality or ethical concerns?

> An essential part of freedom is choice.  You want to take that away.

You haven't even come close to showing that.

John Goerzen   Linux, Unix consulting & programming   jgoerzen@complete.org |
Developer, Debian GNU/Linux (Free powerful OS upgrade)       www.debian.org |
The 47,260,887th prime number is 925,808,197.

Reply to: