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Re: GR: Removal of non-free

On Sat, Jan 10, 2004 at 03:28:27AM -0600, Manoj Srivastava wrote:
> > Okay, so you've called me ignorant and dishonest.  This promotes an
> > atmosphere of conviviality how, Mr. Secretary?  :)
> 	Are you implying that I sent that message in as project
>  secretary, which would be inappropriate conduct?

Is it appropriate to accuse me of igrorance and dishonesty in any other
capacity, particularly when you do not take the time to bolster your
charges with independently verifiable observations?

> 	I know.  You tend to emphasize more on the free software part,
>  and not the fact that users need to use non-free software part, which
>  is the facet of Debian I think we are fast losing -- instead of
>  trying to create the best, most useful, the universal operating
>  system, we now wish to make ideologically pure toy systems -- whether
>  or not real world applications would  work on it or not.

You posit a false dilemma.  Or is it your assertion that a system
consisting exclusively of Free Software is of zero practical utility?

Or is it your assertion that an "ideologically pure toy system" may
actually be useful for a great many everyday personal business tasks?

You seem to be urging people to reach certain conclusions without
bothering to validate each of the premises that would get them there.

> 	Generallyy, though, one asks the _users_ of tools what an
>  adequate replacement is, not some idle bystander with an axe to
>  grind.

If someone has an axe to grind, how can they be an "idle bystander"?

In any case, do you posit that Debian developers, whose labor produces
the Debian GNU/Linux operating system distribution, should not be
empowered to determine the contents of that distribution?  Or do you
merely want them kept out of the loop in determining the contents of

>  Users of netscape have found alternatives -- though people
>  have noted that there are some who would have coinsidered gopher an
>  adequatre replacement.

That different people have different needs, which they satisfy with
different tools, does not strike me as a controversial position.  In
your view, how many users' needs should have to be satisfied by a
packaged Free alternative to a non-free package before that non-free
package is eligible for exclusion from the Debian project?

Or is the entire issue of Free alternatives just a red herring?  Should
a package be kept in non-free as long as someone is willing to maintain
it there, regardless of how many users feel a Free alternative is
equal or superior to it?  If that is true, why do we tolerate the
removal of packages from non-free when they have security holes that we
are unwilling or unable to fix?  Aren't the users and the package
maintainer fit to determine that a security vulnerability is not a
serious enough issue to warrant the package's removal?

> > But, as you've diligently endeavored to make clear with your replies
> > to my messages, my opinions are likely shared by no one else.
> 	Yet again a failure of logic.

How is an inductively-grounded prediction a failure of logic?  Such an
argument can only fail through ostensive demonstration.  John Goerzen
has already done this.

>  You make som amny illogical leaps in the midst of your polemics it is
>  hard to even argue against them.

To my mind, you seem to be quite up to the task.  Well, at least if I
understand "argue" in the colloquial sense rather than the formal one,
which seems to be mode in which you prefer to conduct this discussion

>  I think you are wrong; Ididn't say you are alone.

You have made it obvious that you don't *just* think I am wrong; you
have accused me of a great many other failings as well.  I do find
myself wondering where the stridency of your antipathy comes from.

G. Branden Robinson                |       Our ignorance is God; what we
Debian GNU/Linux                   |       know is science.
branden@debian.org                 |       -- Robert Green Ingersoll
http://people.debian.org/~branden/ |

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