Subject: Re: Servlets in CL
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 2000/05/20
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Ingvar Mattsson <>
| //Ingvar (aigh! I'm defending Erik!)

  Wrong.  You're not defending _me_.  You're not agreeing with _me_,
  either.  You're defending something you, too, believe to be true,
  quite independently of me or that I agree with _you_.  If you have
  to subordinate your defense of truth or what you believe in to who
  else believes it, I seriously suggest you rethink your value system.

  It is as bogus to defend _people_ because of what they say or do as
  it is to attack _people_ because of what they say or do.   Those who
  confuse them naturally feel attacked or defended personally because
  of what they say or do, and that complicates things immensely when
  you want to praise or criticize opinions or actions.  Let's mature
  beyond such _unwarranted_ feelings of personal closeness and instead
  concentrate on ideas and actions -- that way, people who have said
  or done something can be praised or criticized without affecting
  their ego, and they can remain free to say or do something else.  If
  we focus on people, we lock them into what they have said and have
  done, and restrict their freedom to change their mind and their ways.

  This is not to say that personal like or dislike is immaterial, but
  there is much evidence to suggest that human psyche is unable to
  deal with more than a handful of _personal_ relationships, and that
  there is a good reason for professional conduct instead of personal
  conduct, and thus of limiting one's like or dislike to the relevant
  aspects of whoever you're dealing with.  Those who are forced beyond
  their limits get into serious trouble, such as nurses who "bond"
  with patients or prostitutes, to take but two well-known examples.

  Personal relationships are _very_ valuable, and they create a very
  valuable emotion: that of personal obligations.  Do not waste them
  on people you don't know -- it _will_ hurt you and others may not
  appreciate the implicit obligations, either.

  With that serious matter out of the way, I appreciate that you took
  the time to help me set the record straight.  You have no obligation
  to continue to help me, and I hope nobody attacks you for anything
  you could only be assumed to agree with, but on USENET, people who
  fail completely to distinguish between the action and whoever acts
  _have_ been known to fail in other ways, as well.
  If this is not what you expected, please alter your expectations.