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Infrequently asked questions

 
 
jacob navia
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      10-15-2008
In his web pages, D. E. Knuth wrote this:
(http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/~knuth/iaq.html)

Infrequently Asked Questions

1. Why does my country have the right to be occupying Iraq?
2. Why should my country not support an international court of justice?
3. Is my country not strong enough to achieve its aims fairly?
4. When the leaders of a country cause it to do terrible things,
what is the best way to restore the honor of that country?
5. Is it possible for potential new leaders to raise questions about
their country's possible guilt, without committing political suicide?
6. Do I deserve retribution from aggrieved people whose lives have
been ruined by actions that my leaders have taken without my consent?
7. How can I best help set in motion a process by which reparations
are made to people who have been harmed by unjust deeds of my country?
8. If day after day goes by with nobody discussing uncomfortable
questions like these, won't the good people of my country be guilty of
making things worse?
 
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Ian Collins
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      10-15-2008
jacob navia wrote:

{political stuff]

Why post that here?

--
Ian Collins
 
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jacob navia
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      10-15-2008
Ian Collins wrote:
> jacob navia wrote:
>
> {political stuff]
>
> Why post that here?
>


Why?

See question 8:

If day after day goes by with nobody discussing uncomfortable questions
like these, won't the good people of my country be guilty of making
things worse?

Knuth is a computer scientist, that until now never openly
took a political position.

I think that this change is significant, and represents a change
in somebody everybody knows here. We discussed here his books,
and I think it isn't without interest to quote him on this.

--
jacob navia
jacob at jacob point remcomp point fr
logiciels/informatique
http://www.cs.virginia.edu/~lcc-win32
 
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Ian Collins
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      10-15-2008
jacob navia wrote:
> Ian Collins wrote:
>> jacob navia wrote:
>>
>> {political stuff]
>>
>> Why post that here?
>>

>
> Why?
>
> See question 8:
>
> If day after day goes by with nobody discussing uncomfortable questions
> like these, won't the good people of my country be guilty of making
> things worse?
>

This is an international forum. Most of the questions are irrelevant
for those of us living in small, peaceful democratic nations who have
never invaded anyone.

--
Ian Collins
 
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Antoninus Twink
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      10-15-2008
On 15 Oct 2008 at 22:46, jacob navia wrote:
> In his web pages, D. E. Knuth wrote this:
>
> 1. Why does my country have the right to be occupying Iraq?

[etc.]

I'm really not sure what the point of this is.

There's no reasoned argument in this list, just a pile of emotive mush.
Lots of people will already agree with his sentiments, some people will
disagree with them. It's hard to imagine anyone's opinion being changed
by it, since there's no logical argument being put forward to convince
them.

Everyone has the right to political expression, even famous computer
scientists. You just wonder why he'd bother putting something so trite
on his website.

 
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jacob navia
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      10-15-2008
Antoninus Twink wrote:
> On 15 Oct 2008 at 22:46, jacob navia wrote:
>> In his web pages, D. E. Knuth wrote this:
>>
>> 1. Why does my country have the right to be occupying Iraq?

> [etc.]
>
> I'm really not sure what the point of this is.
>
> There's no reasoned argument in this list, just a pile of emotive mush.
> Lots of people will already agree with his sentiments, some people will
> disagree with them. It's hard to imagine anyone's opinion being changed
> by it, since there's no logical argument being put forward to convince
> them.
>
> Everyone has the right to political expression, even famous computer
> scientists. You just wonder why he'd bother putting something so trite
> on his website.
>


Knuth is a computer scientist, not a good political analyst/historian.

His views are solely based on moral grounds. Note question 1,

Why does my country have the right to be occupying Iraq?

He doesn't analyze the war, pinpoints the people that are
making a profit from this act, nor he names any administration.

But he does ask the right question, the question of the right of
a big country to invade a small one. The question of the silence
of everyone concerning the daily killing going on in that country.

I know this is off topic, but it is precisely that the tragedy.
It is nowhere on topic. Everyone goes on making AS IF nothing
serious would happen.

I find the position of Knuth correct, correct in the moral sense,
and I was surprised when I saw that, I just did not expect it.

And then I reflected that it would be nice to remember that
silence is surely not a good reaction to this kind of
atrocity.


--
jacob navia
jacob at jacob point remcomp point fr
logiciels/informatique
http://www.cs.virginia.edu/~lcc-win32
 
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Flash Gordon
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      10-15-2008
jacob navia wrote, On 15/10/08 23:54:
> Ian Collins wrote:
>> jacob navia wrote:
>>
>> {political stuff]
>>
>> Why post that here?

>
> Why?
>
> See question 8:
>
> If day after day goes by with nobody discussing uncomfortable questions
> like these, won't the good people of my country be guilty of making
> things worse?


I discus politics, just not here.

> Knuth is a computer scientist, that until now never openly
> took a political position.


So?

> I think that this change is significant, and represents a change
> in somebody everybody knows here. We discussed here his books,
> and I think it isn't without interest to quote him on this.


It may well be interesting somewhere that politics is topical. He might
have written interesting books on Coral 66 as well, and those would be
about computing, but they also would not be topical here.

There are plenty of places where politics are either topical or
acceptable, and at least some of them have people who are interested in
computing and even programming in C as well.
--
Flash Gordon
If spamming me sent it to http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)
If emailing me use my reply-to address
See the comp.lang.c Wiki hosted by me at http://clc-wiki.net/
 
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Keith Thompson
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      10-16-2008
jacob navia <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
> In his web pages, D. E. Knuth wrote this:
> (http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/~knuth/iaq.html)
>
> Infrequently Asked Questions
>
> 1. Why does my country have the right to be occupying Iraq?

[...]
> 8. If day after day goes by with nobody discussing uncomfortable
> questions like these, won't the good people of my country be guilty of
> making things worse?


9. Why do newsgroups other than comp.lang.c exist?

There is no shortage of people discussing these issues, myself
included. Most of us, unlike you, have the common sense not to
discuss them *here*.

On a partially related issue, it's ironic that you post using a
"nospam.com" e-mail address. First, though your most recent message
is not actually spam (unless you've posted it to multiple newsgroups),
it's certainly inappropriate and unsolicited. Second, nospam.com is
an actual domain; it's likely that you're cauing their incoming mail
servers to receive some of the spam that was intended for you. If you
want to avoid spam by using an invalid address, try "nospam.invalid".

--
Keith Thompson (The_Other_Keith) (E-Mail Removed) <http://www.ghoti.net/~kst>
Nokia
"We must do something. This is something. Therefore, we must do this."
-- Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn, "Yes Minister"
 
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Peter Nilsson
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      10-16-2008
jacob navia <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> Ian Collins wrote:
> > jacob navia wrote:
> > > {political stuff]

> > Why post that here?

>
> Why?


Yes why? Have you also spammed comp.compilers.lcc?
[checks] I see you haven't. Now I wonder why that is...

--
Peter
 
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Richard
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      10-16-2008
Flash Gordon <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:

> jacob navia wrote, On 15/10/08 23:54:
>> Ian Collins wrote:
>>> jacob navia wrote:
>>>
>>> {political stuff]
>>>
>>> Why post that here?

>>
>> Why?
>>
>> See question 8:
>>
>> If day after day goes by with nobody discussing uncomfortable questions
>> like these, won't the good people of my country be guilty of making
>> things worse?

>
> I discus politics, just not here.


Good for you. Jacob wishes to in one thread with people he discusses
things with every day. Maybe he wants ISO C programmers views. Well,
there's the place to get them.

>
>> Knuth is a computer scientist, that until now never openly
>> took a political position.

>
> So?
>
>> I think that this change is significant, and represents a change
>> in somebody everybody knows here. We discussed here his books,
>> and I think it isn't without interest to quote him on this.

>
> It may well be interesting somewhere that politics is topical. He might
> have written interesting books on Coral 66 as well, and those would be
> about computing, but they also would not be topical here.
>
> There are plenty of places where politics are either topical or
> acceptable, and at least some of them have people who are interested in
> computing and even programming in C as well.


Time to kill thread 0.1 seconds. Time for you to construct your nagging
reply about 2 minutes.

 
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