[linux-elitists] Re: random questions

Rick Moen rick@linuxmafia.com
Sun Dec 9 22:59:33 PST 2001

[Sorry about breaking threading:  I accidentally deleted the original.]

begin Karsten M. Self quotation:

>> I'm additionally frustrated that just by asking questions of this list
>> I may get badly burned.
> Deal with it.  Rick's got a brusque manner.

Rick may indeed have a brusque manner, but it is not true that the other
gentlemen was _just asking questions_.  He posted the following (a post
containing exactly zero questions, by the way) in response to my
referring to a book as interesting and worthwhile:

> Hmmm... A book presented [as] non-fiction, written by a man who was
> arguably one of the great manipulators of the century. I sense that
> you have a greater desire to be deceived than even a devout Mormon.

Now, I'm not accustomed to strangers pronouncing me credulous, solely
because I praised a book as interesting, worthwhile reading.  And,
frankly, I have no intention of getting used to it.  

Guess what, Mr. Whittle?  I recommend long-time Stasi head Markus Wolf's 
autobiography, too (_Man Without a Face: The Autobiography of
Communism's Greatest Spymaster_).  Likewise interesting and worthwhile.

And in neither case have I said word one about whether I think the
authors' accounts should be taken at face value, or to what degree.
Those matters being not relevant to the discussion.

Now, Mr. Whittle, it may be the case that you consider Mr. Wolf's
account to also be "apocryphal", and might consider its author to have
any of sundry personal defects.  You may on those grounds or others --
perhaps with actual reasoning and specifics, as opposed to just
armchair condemnation -- differ with my view that his volume is
interesting and worthwhile.  You could posts those reasons.  They might
even be interesting.

But if your response is limited to merely calling people credulous who
recommend what they consider interesting, worthwhile books, you're very
likely to get written off as someone with no manners, and ignored.

Play it whichever way you feel best, sir.

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