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RE: [xml-dev] Recent allegations about me

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Len Bullard [mailto:cbullard@hiwaay.net]
> Sent: Saturday, January 27, 2007 9:38 AM
> To: 'Rick Jelliffe'; 'XML Dev'
> Subject: RE: [xml-dev] Recent allegations about me
> The sorry bit is the follow on.  Even the comedians are picking up on it
> starting to make fun of Wikipedia.  

Yup.  It was interesting to see how various people over-reacted to protect
their own image or preconceptions, and choked on the poisonous blowback. In
my humble and biased opinion, the person who comes out looking the best,
with integrity fully intact, is Rick himself.  

Seeing Rick be absurdly characterized as a Microsoft shill reminded me of an
interview on NPR a couple of weeks ago with Robert Sapolsky
Apparently our amygdalas, which are deeply involved in fear/aggression
reactions, have evolved to make such categorizations automatically. In the
article linked off that page, Sapolsky concludes: "Thus, it seems quite
plausible to me that we are hard-wired towards making Us/Them distinctions
and not being all that nice to the Them". 

I'm getting a bit weary of the Us vs Them stuff in the software world.  As
much as I enjoyed  http://www.oreillynet.com/xml/blog/2007/01/wikigate.html,
I wish we could all just agree that *nobody* eats babies, but everybody
happily chows down on the competition, commercial or ideological, when given
the chance.  Sapolsky goes on to say: "But what is anything but hard-wired
is who counts as an Us and as a Them -we are so easily manipulated into
changing those categories.... So, I'm optimistic that with the right sort of
priorities and human engineering (whatever that phrase means), we can be
biased towards making Us/Them dichotomies far more benign than they tend to
be now. Say, by making all of us collectively feel like an Us with Them
being ... s***ty, intolerant people without compassion."

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