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[humorix] The Latest Get-Rich-Quick Scheme: Bashing Linux

The Latest Get-Rich-Quick Scheme: Bashing Linux
December 22, 1999

At this point everybody knows that the easiest way to
increase a company's stock price is to insert the magic
word 'Linux' in a press release.  However, many people
haven't caught on to the latest way to make money from
Linux: writing an editorial bashing it.  This strategy,
once tightly guarded by the likes of Jesse Berst and Fred
Moody, is now open to any pundit, and it can be quite
lucrative -- as USAToday.com columnist Will Rodger
discovered today.

The idea is simple:

1. Write a scathing article attacking some facet of Linux
   ("I had trouble installing it..." articles are the most

2. Publish it on the Net.

3. Arrange for the article to be mentioned on LinuxToday or

4. Watch as thousands of angry Linux zealots storm your
   article and load the advertising banners.  Listen to the
   ca-chink sound of the advertising revenue that's pouring

5. As soon as the maelstrom quiets, publish another
   scathing article about the immaturity of the Linux
   "community", excerpting some of the nasty flames from
   Linux longhairs denouncing your intelligence and
   claiming that you're on the Microsoft payroll.

6. Arrange for the article to be mentioned on LinuxToday or

7. Watch as thousands of angry Linux zealots storm your

8. Wait for a few weeks, and repeat.  Cash your inflated
   paycheck, invest the proceeds in some Linux stocks, and
   retire early.  You've "earned" it!

Fred "I've Been Assimilated By Microsoft" Moody and Jesse
"Could You Get Fired For Choosing Linux?" Berst have
successfully used this strategy for years.  Indeed,
advertising revenue from Berst's "AnchorDesk" is probably
the only thing keeping Ziff-Davis afloat.  Today's
anti-Linux op-ed[1] on USAToday.com ("Linux: Windows
competitor... Not!") is currently enduring the LinuxToday
Effect[2] and the author is undoubtedly receiving at least
2.32 flames per minute.

To help you get started with this latest get-rick-quick
scheme, we here at Humorix have composed the perfect
anti-Linux diatribe guaranteed to increase your hit count
manyfold.  Just take this article, make a few
modifications, publish it, and sit back and relax (while
ignoring the 10,000 irate flame emails and bomb threats you


By Mr. Jesse Berst Wannabe, Whiff-Davis AnchorSoapBox

Linus Torvalds, the ultra-geeky hippie get-back-to-earth
spirtualist who created his own operating system, is said
to be plotting world domination. Hell will freeze over
before the you-must-be-a-geek-to-use-it Linux operating
system becomes more than a Wall Street fad.  The only thing
Bill Gates needs to worry about is whether some
unaccountable federal court breaks up Microsoft and the
whole notion of free-market Capitalism with it.

Linux is based on Unix, a system born of the Drug Culture
'60s that has this quaint little thing called a "command
line".  I for one am glad that Bill Gates innovated the
concept of a graphical desktop with cascading menus,
colorful icons, and intuitive dialog boxes, because command
lines just plain suck.  Imagine trying to converse with
somebody who doesn't speak English using only
two-cans-and-a-string, and you'll understand what a command
line feels like.

Of course, it doesn't matter what interface Linux uses if
you can't install it.  And, if by some miracle of the
heavens, you are able to successfully install and boot it
before the next Ice Age, the system will probably not
recognize 50% of your hardware.  Meanwhile, you can
purchase a new PC at Wal-Mart, boot it up, and Plug-n-Play
Windows will automatically auto-detect your hardware and
you'll be all set (plus you'll never deal with a command

I speak from experience.  Last week I obtained the book
"Linux For Dummies" in the bargain bin of the local
bookstore; the book comes fresh with the Slackware 1.0
distribution on CD-ROM.  It was a nightmare. My first
impressions were horrible; Slackware (what kind of a name
is that?) had the outright gall to force me to
"re-partition" my hard drive, and then, to make matters
worse, demanded that I save a backup of my Windows
partition because it might be accidentally deleted.  Which
is exactly what happened.

To make a long story short, I finally got Linux up and
running. Sort of.  The sound card doesn't work, the USR
WinModem isn't detected, and the behavior of the
[expletive] DELETE and BACKSPACE keys varies in every
program!  I haven't been able to use something called the
"X Window System" (whatever that is); I keep getting dire
warnings that improperly configuring my monitor settings
might cause it to blow up or something.  I've never had to
face that kind of risk with Windows, so I gave up on that.

As you can imagine, I haven't accomplished much.  It seems
I can't do much in Linux without running into my new enemy,
the vi "text editor". I can't begin to describe how
appalling this software (created by Satan, no doubt) truly
is.  Forcing criminals to use it on a regular basis would
be declared Cruel and Unusual Punishment by the courts. I
say: Give me WordPad or give me death!

The only Linux program I've been able to successfully use
is fortune, a virtual children's toy that spits out a
random epigram with each execution.  It usually spits out
obfuscated quotes or obscure in-jokes that only a long-time
nerd could possibly find interesting.  Indeed, the fortune
program seems to be Linux's way of telling me: "You don't
belong here.  You're not a nerd.  You don't eat, sleep, and
breathe computers.  You're not a snot-nosed 14 year old
punk with acne and no life.  This operating system is not
for you.  Go away."

Linux's technical problems account for only half of the
picture.  The Linux community, and its constituent members,
are another force to be reckoned with (or, more precisely,
to be avoided).  The system's developers, often
socially-inept teenagers, are more interested in
ego-reinforcement than in producing an innovative,
user-friendly, paradigm-shifting, enterprise-capable
operating system that can compete with Microsoft offerings
(which Linux is NOT by any means).

Ego-boosting for Linux "hackers" often revolves around Code
Envy ("my  program requires more command-line options than
yours does!"), adding bloat to programs without any real
planning ("my patch to fortune allows it to read email and
surf the Web!"), and producing jokes and parodies that only
other nerds could appreciate ("Get rick quick by bashing
Linux!").  How these anarchistic Gates-wannabes have been
able to produce an operating system that works at all is
something scientists will ponder for centuries to come.

To top it off, a new wave of carpetbaggers, Wall Street
moguls, and get-rich-quick schemers have joined the Linux
ranks now that the system has become (for now) financially
fashionable.  I, for one, do not want to use an operating
system controlled by money-grubbing, grave-robbing,
spin-doctor marketers who would sell their own mother for
stock options.  That's why I use Microsoft Windows and not

Windows has been, and always will be, the foundation of
computing. Linux longhairs might be having fun now, but it
won't last long. Mark my words, next year all of today's
high-flying millionaire Linux zealots will be flipping
burgers at MickeyD's after the Great Linux Stock Bubble

Linux will suffer the same fate as Beta VCRs, New Coke, and
the Edsel. It's doomed.  Long live Microsoft and the best
operating system ever devised, Windows!

[1] http://www.usatoday.com/life/cyber/tech/review/crg733.htm
[2] http://linuxtoday.com/story.php3?sn=14136


James S. Baughn
Humorix:      Linux and Open Source(nontm) on a lighter note
Archive:      http://humbolt.nl.linux.org/lists/
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