The Invisible Hand

Matthew C. Weigel weigel+ at
Mon Oct 1 23:07:16 UTC 2001

On Mon, 1 Oct 2001, Russell Nelson wrote:

> This is a very good summary.

See?  I'm not out to demonize you :)

> The FSF argues that, without the social/ethical committment to free
> software, their committment to open source changes like the wind.

Well, more accurately (IMO), the FSF argues that the pragmatic argument
is not as unassailable, and thus not so constant, as the social/ethical

Put another way, pragmatism is founded upon the ability of the user to
adequately (or inadequately, if I were to argue open source were not
pragmatic ;) weigh costs and benefits.  An idealistic social/ethical
stance is not so constrained.
 Matthew Weigel
 Research Systems Programmer
 mcweigel at ne weigel at

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