Subject: Re: Bohr's way
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 05 Oct 2002 12:59:46 +0000
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Vassil Nikolov
| This reminds me again of an anecdote, about Bohr this time.  He is
| said to have never criticized sharply people presenting their work,
| and to have been well known for his civility.

  Guys, guys, are you quite sure you have read what I /actually/ write?

| On reading a completely worthless paper, he exclaimed, `I don't mean to
| criticize, I just cannot understand how someone could write such
| rubbish!'

  Consider the context of the contributions.  What we have here in
  comp.lang.lisp are far from publishable material.  And people /are/
  treated respectfully and civilly first.  They actually are, even though
  they of course have a vested interest in attacking me when some of the
  resident evil flame me for everything I do.  I mean, what could be better
  than to have someone to blame for your own incompetence when it is
  called?  What could be better for the incompetent than to deflect
  attention away from himself to talk about how bad I am who dared correct
  him and made him feel bad?  After all, every other incompetent and evil
  bastard here does it, so what should hold any new incompetent back?
  Surely, not his /own/ ethical standards.

| By the way, once I heard someone (an algebra professor, if that matters)
| say that learning is a painful process, and I believe that is true, at
| least with regards to effective learning.

  It is made less painful the earlier you correct your mistakes.  When
  people go non-linear simply because they are corrected early with some
  misguided assumptions, I can hardly take the blame for that.  In fact, I
  refuse to take the blame for correcting someone when he comes to a forum
  to discuss his notions and discussion must be based in getting people in
  line with the accepted models as soon as possible?

  What I find so disturbing after watching yet another flame war where
  people attack me, is that I am once again blamed for it.  THEY attack ME!
  What do you expect me to /do/ with the evil that flows out of Erann Gat,
  Ray Blaak, and Raffael Cavallero?  I want these evil shitheads to stop
  more than anything else in the world when they gang up on me.  Sure, I
  want them to hurt like hell for having started yet another flame war
  about how bad I am.  Is there not a single person here who understands
  what it is like to be the victim of so much unfettered hatred as these
  three produce?  It is not something I have done to them, it is how they
  feel for having been similar idiots in the past that causes them to hate
  me this time around, too.  And they do not need much to start up the hate
  machine.  Some idiot who asks whether I am always so full of poisonous
  bile is enough to start them on their torrential outpouring of hatred.

  What if someone started to behave the way you relate here about Bohr or
  others?  What do /I/ get from people who hate me?  "Thanks for your
  wonderful contributions, but ..."?  Not likely.  Some insincere flattery
  comes only long after it has become clear that they are once again going
  to lose their own fight.

Erik Naggum, Oslo, Norway

Act from reason, and failure makes you rethink and study harder.
Act from faith, and failure makes you blame someone and push harder.