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Re: Emacs contributions, C and Lisp

From: Richard Stallman
Subject: Re: Emacs contributions, C and Lisp
Date: Mon, 10 Mar 2014 15:08:05 -0400

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     > With the GNU GPL (and copyleft in general), we make sure that all
     > copies of all versions of our code _respect users' freedom_.

    That's a nice euphemism for *dis*respect for the users.  You treat
    them like children, fearing they will abuse their freedom by choosing
    bondage to proprietary software rather than choosing less capable free
    software, or even just saying no to the unique benefits of some
    proprietary software.

Choosing proprietary software rather than less convenient free
software is something that users of all ages regularly do.  When I am
concerned that users might fall prey to proprietary extended versions
of GCC, I am treating them like real adults with real adults'

I have taken measures to prevent proprietary extended versions of GCC
from existing.  If they don't exist, people don't fall prey to them.

What's significant about this point is that it shows that your
disagreement is not really with this specific decision about Emacs.
Rather, you're against the broader goal which this specific decision
is meant to achieve.  What bothers you is not the possibility that
this Emacs decision might fail, but that it might succeed.

     > By calling LLVM "friendly competition" you misrepresent the issue at
     > stake.  You're wasting your time, asking me to change my mind based on
     > ignoring what's at stake.

    I apologize for using the word "friendly"; I should remember that your
    sense of humor doesn't extend that far.

I am concerned with the serious distortion, not with the veil of humor
that was meant to augment its misleading effect.

You oppose some basic goals of the GNU Project; you are trying to
interfere with our efforts to achieve them.  One way you do this is by
attacking decisions about how to implement them, claiming the decision
will backfire.

Every strategic decision has an upside and a downside.  You exaggerate
the downside and downplay the upside, and thus "prove" that it will
backfire.  But that is not a proof, it is just spin.

Since nobody can see the future, such decisions are judgment calls.  I
don't trust your judgment about how to achieve our goals because you
don't want to achieve them.

I discuss my strategy decisions with people I trust, people who
understand and agree with the broader basic decisions of the GNU
Project.  When they say I am making a mistake, I pay attention,
because I know they aim for the same kind of success.  When you make
the same claim, I discount it because you don't want us to achieve
that success.  It may well be that you call a decision a mistake
precisely because it would achieve our goals.

I've announced my decision on the issue of Emacs and clang.  I'm
willing to explain the reasons for it in response to serious questions
from people who support the goal.  Your arguments, which oppose more
basic points, belong on gnu-misc-discuss, not here.

Dr Richard Stallman
President, Free Software Foundation
51 Franklin St
Boston MA 02110
www.fsf.org  www.gnu.org
Skype: No way! That's nonfree (freedom-denying) software.
  Use Ekiga or an ordinary phone call.

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