Subject: Re: OT: Erik Naggum's Long-Windedness (was: (endp lst) or (null lst)) From: Erik Naggum <email@example.com> Date: 10 Jan 2003 18:03:22 +0000 Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> * Nils Goesche <email@example.com> | Look, troll: The last time you posted anything about Lisp here, you | didn't even understand the point of macros. How about doing some | productive work and think about them instead of insulting Lispers | who are obviously far ahead of your level of understanding? "Oleg" is not insulting me. He is trying to communicate to me that he feels a debilitating powerlessness to respond intelligently to me. I can feel his pain. I have presented him with a model of the world with which he cannot begin to grapple, and I present this model with such force that he can only feel rage and rebellion; all he can do is succumb to a desire to shriek "no! no! it isn't so!". "Oleg" is not the first person to encounter a text that presents the reader with two simultaneous impossibilities: (1) a different view to a reality he does not recognize but feels he should, and (2) such a powerful model (or set of models) that the reader has two choices: (a) to bow to and accept it, or (b) be steamrollered by it. The failure to deal with such impossibilities causes people to take to the street to protest against high prices of necessities, to fight globalization with riots, etc. The /right/ way to deal with it is of course to challenge the underlying model, but this requires both skill and intelligence; hence his profound sense of powerlessness. "Oleg" is the kind of person who needs texts that are squarely in the mainstream, such that every idea is expressed with few words and requires no thought of its readers. Because he is not intelligent enough to recognize when other people are more intelligent than he is, he truly believes that those who disagree with his models of the world are wrong, or mad. People of that category have risen to the role of president of the nation he posts from and probably lives in. The impotent, futile rebellion of "Oleg" exemplifies the inability of the illiterate and uneducated to deal with the expression of ideas that require a background different from the one they barely succeeded in securing. (Hence his preoccupation with high-school drop-outs.) Now, contrary to what some people believe, you can be illiterate and uneducated and still have an academic degree -- the system is not bullet-proof in weeding out the useless. One may hold a PhD and yet be culturally illiterate, unable to place information in a larger context, much less question it and see it questioned. Yet the more "approved" such a maleducated person is by his peers, the more he may believe that the /exclusive/ models characteristic of those of meager resources is also the fundamentally correct way to approach models, i.e., that alternative truths threaten all the established truths and that those who offer additional models have intended to dethrone the accepted models, violently. "Oleg" has also watched me try to shake people out of their sleep, so he believes that being brutal is the acceptable method of getting somebody's attention. The problem is that he has yet to figure out when to apply this methodology and behaves much like a president of one country who has memorized that the military could free a country from an oppressor and therefore becomes an oppressor and attacker of another country's leader because he is too goddamn stupid to figure out the difference between attack and self-defense. We should therefore give people in the formerly great United States of America a lot of lee-way at this crucial time in history. Their bumbling moron of a leader has been elected and is supported by the "Oleg" category of people. It is about as fruitful to ask these people to get a grip on themselves as it is to ask an illiterate to go read a million words before he opens his mouth again. It may be the best advice they could get, but it would take years to do it, and the recipient of the advice would not grasp its benevolent nature. If the United States of America cleans up the systemic flaws that led George W. Bush to the presidency, perhaps its ignorant masses will quiet down and once again accept that if somebody does not agree with them, it could be because they know better, but as long as this dangerous retard is their leader, we should expect that a large number of miscreants want to be taken seriously like their president, who is one of them. "Oleg" is just a symptom of a tragedy unfolding on continental scale. His powerlessness and his clear expression of /fear/ of something superior to himself that he cannot control is simply to be expected. He posts from Columbia University, in New York City, so he is probably still reeling from the shock of finally having to deal with reality. So be nice to "Oleg" and his like for the time being. When their stupid president has gone to war and their currency has become so cheap we Europeans can buy up the whole country instead of paying for more members to the European Union, we have to act like true gentlemen towards the infirm and the losers in battle. After all, it was we Europeans who subjugated war to the rule of law, which the uncultured Americans and their doddering lubbard of a president has yet to grasp what means. An angry American who hurls insults at this time is really an incredibly pathetic display of an attempt to reach out and ask for approval and validation of his helplessness. History will judge "Oleg" and "Dubya" much more harshly than we could do here in a newsgroup supposedly about programming languages, so the illness should just be allowed to run its course. With any luck, the population of the United States wakes up before the next election. Most of us can wait patiently for them to regain their senses, so we should sit by their sickbed rather than beat them up when they have violent fits. I strongly recommend that whoever can still read this in the heavily censored United States try to band together resistance groups so you can recuperate some of your nation's glory. The right to bear arms was instituted precisely to protect against wayward presidents and politicians who led the country astray. It is not too late, you can still be a civilized country. If you think other countries need to get rid of bad leaders, set an /excellent/ example by removing the single most dangerous man on the planet from power, so maybe Saddam Hussein will resign nicely because he saw how effectively it worked. We can deal with "Oleg" and his like after the important matters. -- 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.