The HeliOS Project is now.....

The HeliOS Project is now.....
Same mission, same folks...just a different name

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Friday, July 04, 2008

What You Deserve

to be worthy of : merit <deserves another chance>
intransitive verb : to be worthy, fit, or suitable for some reward or requital deserve — T. S. Eliot> Webster 1913

The definition hasn't changed much since it was defined by Webster in the most authoritative dictionary of our time...the 1913 volume. But, as many younger people feel about music, if it's old, it's not good.

Newsflash kids...words are eternal.

Ask Aristotle or Plato..Kierkegaard. If those examples of linguistic longevity don't convince you...

You can always ask Jesus. There are a few folks who believe He put the Exist in Existentialism.

All of this helios just to discuss the word "deserve"?

Yeah...and there's more behind that.

See, we live in a place in time where words like "awesome" are used in the context where the word "cool" or "impressive" would be better suited. "Awesome" is a tornado dropping from the heavens to plow unimaginable destruction...or a double rainbow drawn against the rolling fury of an Arizona dust storm. Being one accused of hyperbole on a semi-regular basis, I feel qualified to comment on this particular subject. As I've also given my life to the spread of FOSS and GNU/Linux, those qualifications just multiplied exponentially.

Or so says me.

It's the Fourth of July. This is the day Americans celebrate their independence. Personally, I don't particularly think going to the lake and getting hammered out of one's mind is suitable homage...but that's not for me to judge. No, I prefer to spend a few hours of this day in deep reflection. Being a military man myself, I know just a tad about the sacrifice those before us made on order for us to celebrate this day...but just a tad. My minuscule experience/contribution is a glimmer of time compared to those who served before me...and it's those accumulated glimmers that I contemplate. They converge and congeal into a magic mirror of sorts...a window into struggles past - The Frozen Choson, Gettysburg, Pork Chop Hill and the Tet battle for Saigon.



We got it right the second time.

Many before us have given much so we can be where we are today...we Americans. But through it all, none of it would have been possible...not the way we know it today, without the brilliance, sacrifice and altruistic spirit of those who formed The Union. Names that we recognize like Hamilton, Jefferson, Franklin and Washington...they are the ones with almost psychic ability to foresee our weaknesses and write into the system the way for even the most weak to be protected...and ways to keep those who would be predators from strewing their torn parts across the landscape.

I have to be careful here...this is where I generally get into trouble.

There are parallels here...parallels between this thing we do and what our forefathers forged into being. Both are struggles for freedom. In both cases there were tyrannical forces that opposed their beliefs and practices. Of course, one involved life and death...the other philosophical beliefs. But make no mistake. Unless we gather and forge our own union, we stand the chance of being squashed into non-existence.

And Please...don't respond by mentioning in any way, shape or form how the "Linux Community" is going to rise to the challenge. There is no "Linux Community". Those who believe there is...go ahead.

Leave that tooth under your pillow one more night. The Tooth Fairy probably just got behind in her rounds.


"Helios, I Deserve the right to use Linux and FOSS." "I Deserve to be able to download and distribute this software. It's my RIGHT".

Ok...I can go with that. It IS your right.

Now tell me just exactly what you've done to "Deserve" it?

There are only a relative handful in this community that "deserve" anything. We all hold the right to this thing we do...but deserve? Most of us don't "deserve" a damned thing...any more than any other person on the Dole waits at the mailbox for the next subsistance check to be delivered...or the next Kernel update. You "Deserve" this? Oh...and just tell me how.

Go ahead...I'm listening.

AllRighty Then



Amenditman said...

The Founding Fathers foresaw even the tyranny of proprietary systems, they lived in one. Many of them had a lot to loose by choosing the path they followed. They believed the sacrifice was their divinely mandated duty to their fellow man and to posterity. Many of them lost everything for the cause, including their lives. The cause still lives because of their sacrifice.

This cause of ours is a 'community' of sorts, but it is intensely personal and individual also.

You mention Jesus, if you know his teaching then you know we 'deserve' eternal damnation through separation from His Father, but are granted eternal life and entrance into the Father's presence through his sacrifice.

Every person gains 'rights' through the sacrifice of others, but is morally and ethically obligated to pass them on to others who are being denied those rights.

GNU/Linux and FOSS, while not life and death, are life changing and bear these same obligations to others. Those who enjoy the benefits are obligated to help others to enjoy those freedoms if they want them.

Helios is right that there is not a 'Linux Community'. Just a bunch of selfish individuals, with some very notable exceptions. We share something they fail to comprehend beyond their own needs and desires.

Never worry, the Founding Fathers were surrounded by those who could not see the benefits of their actions, only the costs and temporary repercussions.

We have all of history to teach us that tyranny always falls to freedom.

On this Independence Day let us begin to behave as a community with the interest of our fellow man foremost in our hearts.


Anonymous said...

Alright, I will be a bit harsh here.

I don't think you are right to decide on behalf of others what they do or don't deserve just as much as you're not right to support the use of force in order to supposedly impose "freedom".

If you haven't noticed, the USA, the "free country" you are celebrating, is long gone. It is a police state heading pretty fast towards an outbreak of secessionism as your shifting governments strip more and more of your rights away and strive to form even bigger governments by joining unions (North American Union anyone? Wait and see I suppose. I guess that's all I can expect Big Patriots to do about it).

I love GNU/Linux and Freedomware. I've built majority of my web presence trying to promote it and the idea of freedom, but at this point in time I see no parallel between it and nationalism and patriotism and in fact those two ideologies are among those I despise the most.

I can't believe you mentioned Falluja, as if anything the "US" soldiers do in Iraq can be justified. Anyone who believes it is right to bring freedom by force isn't quite so much about freedom. A cause for the sake of having a cause perhaps? A dosage of "warm and fuzzies"? Or maybe, yes, it is all out of genuine belief, which is admirable.

But if you continue comparing Linux advocacy with bloodshed that US cause in the name of "fighting for freedom" with it then I think you are incredibly misguided.

As one Freedomware advocate to another, you've lost a fan. There are better ways to spread freedomware.

I am a voluntaryist. I support no war. I justify no use of coercion. As such I see myself as part of no nation and a subject of no government.

Pity I'll be flamed to hell for saying this, because people would rather delude themselves than see beyond the prejudice. They call it crimestop.

Thank you.

Amenditman said...

Imagine that, anonymous left a critical comment.

Well, I for one will choose to ignore anonymous comments.

I have an online 'handle', Amenditman', but my real world identity is no secret, what are you hiding? Who are you really? What is your agenda?



Unknown said...

No, you are not going to get flamed. I know who you are but I will let that stay between you and me. I respect your work and your opinion even if we disagree.

Here, it's not even a matter of disagreement...either you didn't understand my core message or I didn't do a very good job in presenting it.

"I see no parallel between it and nationalism and patriotism and in fact those two ideologies are among those I despise the most."

Dude...people... brave, selfless people gave up limbs, sanity and their lives for you to have the "right" to say what you just did. That is the fruit of their sacrifice. You have the RIGHT to say what you just did. That doesn't mean you deserve the right to say it. You did nothing but accept the fates by being born in a place where you find yourself in this blessed environment. I simply struck a nerve with you because I put the events together in a clear parallel. And you damned right I mentioned Fallujah. A man as close to me as any of my brothers fought in both of those campaigns. It's a military thing...a thing you obviously do not understand. I do suppose you think you are above such things. Pity that...a bit of sacrifice might do you good. It did me. We shared much closer philosophies at one time. Having my throat slit open and having to continue the battle with a t-shirt stuffed in the wound taught me humility and service.

"as if anything the "US" soldiers do in Iraq can be justified. Anyone who believes it is right to bring freedom by force isn't quite so much about freedom."

Bring Freedom? Freedom? It doesn't have a damned thing to do with bringing "freedom". It's about oil and the accumulation of forces to protect that oil. Freedom? Now THAT's naive. And btw...what I said should not be construed as criticism. Just truthful observation. Seen it first hand.

"If you haven't noticed, the USA, the "free country" you are celebrating, is long gone."

Nope...stuck my head out just a couple hours ago to burn some meat and go get some wine. It's still there.

Now let me get to the point you missed. Pacifists didn't protect this nation when she was attacked and they will exhibit the same lay-down-and-take-it mentality when FOSS is threatened. THAT is the point I am making. While not near the physical and psychological sacrifices...those who profess to hold this thing we have as precious better get off their asses and do something to prove it. We need marketing...we need exposure. Your word-of-mouth techniques have netted us what...? three to five percent of the market? Damn...I am dizzied from the accention.

You need to look around you. Microsoft has just positioned itself to launch what they want us to think is a hostile takeover of Xandros. It's been planned for months. The deals that were struck with Linspire put the contracts to do just that into place. Now their paper and Xandros' paper read "legally correct", Microsoft will obtain Xandros, Dump a ton of money into marketing and be THE COMPANY to offer the only true choice to the consumer.

"Windows or Linux...take your pick".

People will think this Linux thing is a creation of Microsoft. Oh a few will contradict it but not enough to be heard by the masses. As far as they are concerned, Microsoft IS their computer. We've done next to nothing to try to teach them otherwise.

Oh, people with your mentality will kick and pout about this for a while but it will be just like the rest of the impotent attempts this community has made to stave them off. A core group of people are forming to deal with this possible threat and are positioning themselves to do something about it. And that's don't have to do anything. Those who want to make this difference are ready to do just that.

you think LIN08 is just a publicity stunt? There are two things that will stop MS from doing this Xandros thing and they will be evident in time...but the threat of them doing just that is as real as the "screw Bush" bumper sticker on your Jetta.
Lindependence 2008 is truly our better go look that one up. the concept might prove enlightening to you.


kozmcrae said...

Jack of all trades, master of none. Champion of all causes pursuer of none. That's the way it is now. I am a specialist in the cause for GNU/Linux and Open Source. Most people I encounter know nothing of Linux. But if they knew what I knew, they would be fierce proponents indeed. Unfortunately they don't have time to become as deeply knowledgeable as me in the trials of Linux because they are too busy becoming deeply knowledgeable in the trials of the environment or the political structure of our government or the Pink-bellied Salamander. I need them to be my sentinels. To warn me if I'm in danger of losing something and to wake me up and educate me about my rights. This is what I do with my chosen cause. This is what Lindependence is all about, making a big noise and alerting people to the erosion of their freedom. It's being accomplished by a small force. So few that it would not be possible if just one or two participants decided it wasn't worth the effort. This is not the time to be our usual opinionated Linux selves. This is not the time to shoot down the effort because it violated some cherished belief. The way to show how wrong we are is to do it yourself in such a big way that it speaks for itself. The business end of that sentence is the word "show".

This isn't taught in any English class that I know of, but if you want your comment or post to have twice the impact, use your real name. Mine is Richard Chapman but you could have looked that up in my Blogger's profile.

Unknown said...

To the person who refused to reveal their identity... It is very easy to understand why you would not. Fear of being flamed. However, you won't be flamed by me. Allow me to enlighten you as to how diverse we all are.

I agree with what helios is doing. However, we have many differences.....

1.) I disagree with the invasion of Iraq. Deep down, I always have, and I always will.

2.) I disagree with the USA Patriot Act.

3.) I disagree with the current administration in office.

So why aren't helios and I bitter enemies? Because we have one major thing that we do agree upon: Free and Open Source Software. The founders of the Constitution fought bitterly amongst themselves. They all had different philosophies concerning how government should operate. They were still able to work from what they all had in common. They set aside their notions and worked together (and that took work on their part).

So please. Don't walk away now. What helios is stating is something I have stated earlier, and that is one key word: frustration. Frustration that people are not doing more than sitting behind their keyboards concerning FOSS. Frustration from others slinging names, insults, lies, and other horrific falsehoods at you while a major attempt to market the Linux penguin alone (Tux) is underway. Frustration from the simple fact that due to personal "grievances," efforts to market FOSS will never be mentioned on a major website for nerds... the one where it claims to have "stuff that matters."

The whole point is that I don't want you to walk away. Here's both of my e-mail addresses:

You can also reach me on Yahoo and AIM (I use Pidgin btw for the client):

thenixedreport (for both AIM and Yahoo)

Please. Don't walk away. If we have disagreements, let's talk about them instead of allowing the mind to close. My door to you is always open.

libervisco said...


I have written a couple of additional comments to this blog entry where I have clearly stated my identity and that I don't actually wish to hide. Not identifying myself immediately was a mistake.

But those comments don't seem to be approved yet for some reason. :(

Maybe Ken could look into that..

Anyway, I tend to agree with you and I am not withdrawing support from Lindependence nor Ken's Linux advocacy in general. I have in fact just made a donation to the project.

Those two posts have much more details on where I'm coming from and also express certain common goals that we share.

Thanks for trying to reach out.

Anonymous said...

I don't think you are right to decide on behalf of others what they do or don't deserve just as much as you're not right to support the use of force in order to supposedly impose "freedom".

I've read this blog several times before publishing my comment and I can't find anywhere that the author is deciding anything for anyone. He is stating an opinion. His point seems to be extremelysimple...we as Linux Users need to look at our personal motives and not use the fact that we belong to the Linux Community as a prerequisite to deserving any entitlements that might come with the territory. He is right. We as a group don't contribute much back and maybe we should spend less time being defensive about it and examine our own contributions a bit closer. He didn't do or say anything that can be construed as demanding. I think people like Helios are flamed for having the courage to voice a strong opinion. Many are uncomfortable with confrontation and feel he is making things uncomfortable for them. Maybe that is a good thing.

Now, you are obviously a part of that large European contingent that just despises America. I travel to Europe several times a year on business and I meet your type every time I travel. Especially the former Eastern Block Countries. Let me put it to you from an American's perspective.

On September 11th, 2001, the ones that died immediately were the fortunate ones. They were vaporized without even knowing what happened. Witnesses today are still undergoing intense psychological treatment because they wer e standing on the ground the day that it "began raining people". Several hundred people were given a horrendous choice. Either burn to death or plummet a thousand feet to their deaths. The people that witnessed this said that many of them slammed to their deaths while holding hands. Their bodies actually exploded upon impact. We were spared this particular footage as it would sicken the most stoic among us but I can arrange for you to view it if you would like to see some horrible Americans get "what they deserve". I don't give a damn about your "evolved" sense of self. What I give a damn about is that my country and 3000 of its civilians were brutally butchered. I, as an American will do whatever it takes to insure that never happens again. You may contemplate and debate on your streetside cafes and coffee houses how it was the US's foreign policies that were to blame for this have the luxury of not being personally affected. I now carry a gun, licensed and under by suit coat everywhere I go.

I am an American patriot...a protector of my country and I thank people like helios for having the courage to make the comparison...while we sacrifice nothing to the extent those who fight in wars sacrifice, he's opened many eyes to the fact that we are the only ones responsible for getting "steamrolled". We've had the opportunity to keep the driver off the machine and we haven't bothered to do it.