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Richard Stallman's Personal Site

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RSS site feed for the most recent political notes and new material.

This is the personal web site of Richard Stallman.
The views expressed here are my personal views, not those of the Free Software Foundation or the GNU Project.
For the sake of separation, this site has always been hosted elsewhere and managed separately.

If you want to send me GPG-encrypted mail, do not trust key servers! Some of them have phony keys under my name and email address, made by someone else as a trick. See gpg.html for my real key.

Richard Stallman has cancer. Fortunately it is slow-growing and manageable follicular lymphoma, so he will probably live many more years nonetheless. But he now has to be even more careful not to catch Covid-19.

Don't watch TV coverage of Covid-19!

The next Boston rally for Julian Assange will be Monday, December 11 at 1pm-2:30 on the Boston Common, near the main entrance to Park St Station.

Canadians: I suggest you seek election advice at a local chapter of a group that pushes to curb global heating and has the courage to say, "Canada should stop exporting fossil fuel." It will at least use the right goals to suggest who to vote for in your area.

Join a Friday climate strike.
That page is made by scraping Fridays for Future so you can get the information without running any Javascript code. I would be very glad if they made the information on their own site accessible from the Free World; then we could simply refer people to their site and do without the scraping etc.

Is your bank pressuring you to use biometric ID? If so, please write to rms at gnu dot org. It could be useful if you document what is happening.

Please join the Free Software Foundation to support its work for your freedom.

"They" is plural — for singular antecedents, use singular gender-neutral pronouns.

Link Policy

The largest part of the site is the political notes, and they are typically updated every day.

I'm looking for people to

Civil Liberties Minute:

[America Means Civil Liberties / Patriotism Means Protecting 
             Them / ]
graphic by Susan Henson
Americans, you may wish to copy this icon to your own page, as a way of showing what patriotism means to you.

Upcoming talks

  • [ No upcoming talks. ]

  • Urgent action items

    Recording of Guantanamero

    Listen to the recording of Guantanamero, a protest song written in Spanish. The recording is in Ogg Vorbis format. To install an Ogg Vorbis player, see the FSF's Ogg Players page.

    There Ought to Be a Law

    More items where there ought to be a law.


    Here are some quotations that I particularly like.

    Most recent Political Notes and News Items

    (RSS Feed)

    You can now read the political notes on Mastodon.

    Salafi Arabia oil and gas plan
    29 November 2023

    *[Salafi] Arabia is driving a huge global investment plan to create demand for its oil and gas in developing countries, an undercover investigation has revealed.*

    Meta designed to get children addicted
    29 November 2023

    *Meta (Facebook) designed platforms to get children addicted, court documents allege.*

    Antisemites supporting Israel
    29 November 2023

    *Antisemites supporting Israel is weird. Jewish support of them is even weirder.* But that's what's happening with the wrecker and the muskrat.

    UAE plan to use Cop28 to sell oil and gas
    29 November 2023

    The UAE planned to use the Cop28 climate conference as a sales platform for its own oil and gas exports.

    In other words, putting an oil emir in charge of reducing use of fossil fuels led him to do all the worst things we imagined.

    29 November 2023

    *HAMAS cannot continue to rule Gaza, says EU foreign affairs chief.*

    The world would be a better place if Gaza were not ruled by HAMAS, but I think that there is no practical and acceptable way to bring that about, except by committing a far bigger crime against humanity than those HAMAS has committed.

    The Palestinian Authority, undermined and weakened by Israel, would not be able to win support in Gaza, and wisely won't agree to try, unless the situation for Palestinians becomes much less oppressive.

    Israel helped strengthen HAMAS in the 1980s as a way of weakening the PA.

    Alaafi Arabia oil and gas plan
    29 November 2023

    *[Salafi] Arabia is driving a huge global investment plan to create demand for its oil and gas in developing countries, an undercover investigation has revealed.*

    Surgeon saw massacre unfold
    29 November 2023

    *London surgeon [Prof Ghassan Abu-Sittah] says he saw "massacre unfold" while working in Gaza hospitals, and claims destruction of Palestinian health system was an Israeli objective.*

    He says that he recognized burns caused by white phosphorus, having learned during a previous bombardment of Gaza what they look like.

    Assange rally
    29 November 2023

    The next Boston rally for Julian Assange will be Monday, December 11 at 1pm-2:30 on the Boston Common, near the main entrance to Park St Station.

    Palestinian writer released
    28 November 2023

    Palestinian writer Mosab Abu Toha was arrested by the Israeli army at a checkpoint on his way to leave Gaza, but he has been released with only a beating.

    The Israeli army should explain why it physically attacks men who it arrests solely for being men.

    Bernie Sanders' condition on military aid to Israel
    28 November 2023

    Bernie Sanders called for the US to condition military aid to Israel on ending its "almost total warfare against the Palestinian people."

    * Sanders’ demands include a post-war commitment by Israel to pursue "broad peace talks for a two-state solution" as well as to ensure displaced Gazans are able to return to their homes and that Israel will not reoccupy or continue its blockade of the enclave.*

    Bravo, Bernie!

    Case challenging legislative maps
    28 November 2023

    *Wisconsin supreme court to hear high-stakes case challenging [gerrymandered] legislative maps.*

    Political attack on human rights
    28 November 2023

    *Political attack on human rights is a "dangerous" assault on UK democracy, says HRW director.*

    *She says that government actions regarding asylum seekers, climate activists and pro-Palestine protesters are starting to "look very much like authoritarianism."*

    Australian coal magnate proposed coal-fired plant
    28 November 2023

    An Australian coal magnate applied for environmental approval for a proposed coal-fired generating plant, saying he would make it "carbon-neutral" by sweeping emissions under various different rugs.

    What's amazing is that the environmental regulator refused to look for an excuse to be fooled. Instead it did what was obviously right, and denied approval.

    Four-day cease fire with release of hostages
    28 November 2023

    Israel and HAMAS have agreed on a 4-day cease fire with release of hostages and prisoners.

    Pressure from Biden joined with pressure from relatives of hostages to make Netanyahu agree to a temporary cease fire deal.

    *The Gaza truce is a ray of hope in the darkness.* Either side could snuff it out, but perhaps pressure can keep it going.

    It is good that pressure to recover hostages led to this step towards peace, and away from continued larger war crimes, but in general it is unwise for any government to prioritize the freeing of some hostages above larger issues.

    When there is a war, there are always much bigger issues at stake than hostages or prisoners of war. Any country at war faces bigger issues. Some of these issues will be moral duties, while others will be vital national interests. If I were a hostage, I would as a patriot not want my government to distract itself from either of those for the side issue of ransoming hostages such as me.

    Americans short of food
    28 November 2023

    Nowadays 28 million Americans are often short of food. 39 million face food insecurity at some time in the year.

    Hunger in the US is one of the key goals of the Republican Party, along with low wages. It was suggested that the real goal is to make working people desperate, so that they will suck up to rich people.

    Work-from-home disabled chef
    28 November 2023

    How is a disabled chef supposed to work from home?

    No one has any idea — the Food Transfer Protocol that we discussed in the 1970s was only a joke.

    German meaning of "Never again"
    28 November 2023

    *Israel-Hamas war opens up German debate over meaning of "Never again".*

    The debate between "Never again against us Jews" and "Never again against anyone" has existed among Jews for decades — perhaps, I suspect, since Israel in 1967 captured territory whose population was mostly Arab. I see this as a question of who one has learned to empathize with and uphold rights for.

    Here is the letter that represents the "Never again against anyone" position.

    Call for progressive carbon taxes
    28 November 2023

    Thomas Piketty calls for progressive carbon taxes, as well as banning private jets and "oversize vehicles" (SUVs?).

    I think this alone would not cut emissions enough, but it would establish a new public awareness that we must take decarbonization seriously.

    PFA called "GenX"
    28 November 2023

    The Netherlands has designated a PFA called "GenX" a hazardous, so it can't be disposed of there. So it is paying a subsidiary of Dupont to import GenX "waste" into the US and do something or other with it in North Carolina. However, people there fear it will be leak, or leak slowly after being dumped in of "deep wells", so they convinced the EPA to block the shipment.

    Banning PFAs is the first crucial step towards ending that form of pollution, but we will still need to find a safe way to dispose of the stocks of PFAs that already exist.

    Pakistan holding ransom Afghan exiles
    28 November 2023

    Pakistan is holding for ransom some 45,000 Afghan exiles to whom the UK and US want to give asylum, charging $830 to allow each of those exiles to leave Pakistan.

    That puts Pakistan in the amazing self-contradictory position of demanding they leave and blocking them from leaving.

    The only other case of demanding ransoms for people to leave was when the Soviet Union agreed to allow Jews to emigrate, and charged a ransom for each "exit visa".

    Do the US and UK give Pakistan any foreign aid? It would be natural to threaten to deduct these exit ransoms from that aid.

    The four factors of the apocalypse:
       global heating, global hating,
       global eating, global mating.

    [More Cartoons]

    Not f'd. You won't find us on Facebook

    Copy this button (courtesy of R.Siddharth) to express your rejection of Facebook.

    Support the Green Party

    Republican Election Rigging Tactics


    The Olympics

    Why everyone has a reason to fear massive surveillance

    Censorship and Repression

    Private equity


    Non-oppressive Commercial E-books

    Don't use Facebook

    Facebook's face recognition demonstrates a threat to everyone's privacy. I therefore ask people not to put photos of me on Facebook; you can do likewise.

    Of course, Facebook is bad for many other reasons as well.

    Boycott Harry Potter Books, Movies, etc.

    Internet Music EULAS

    Business Supremacy Treaties

    Countries to Stay Away From

    No national identity cards

    I'd like to make a list of countries that do not require a national identity card, and have no plans to adopt one. If you live in or have confirmed knowledge of such a country, please send email to rms at

    Here's my list of countries with no national ID cards and no plans for one: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK. Australia's previous government tried to institute national ID cards, but the Labor government dropped the plan.

    India has mostly finished imposing a national biometric ID number in a grand act of oppression.

    Switzerland has national ID cards which are optional, but they or some other government ID card are needed for some purposes.

    Iceland doesn't have ID cards as such, but they have ID numbers that citizens are forced to use frequently. For example, the national ID number is often required to rent a video or use a gym.

    Denmark issues non-photo ID cards with a "person number", and many services use this card to identify people.

    Norway will impose a national biometric ID card.

    Ireland - national ID card by stealth.

    ACLU: the five dangers of national ID cards.

    Wikipedia has a list of identity card policies by country.


    Stay away from certain countries because of their bad immigration policies.

    Flight connections

    Avoid flight connections in these airports because of their treatment of passengers.

    The Lifelong Activist

    People often ask how I manage to continue devoting myself to progressive activism (such as the free software movement) for years without burning out. The best way I can answer is by recommending a book, The Lifelong Activist by Hillary Rettig.

    I disagree with the book on one theoretical point in the last part of the book: we shouldn't think of political activism as being marketing and sales, because those terms refer to business, and politics is something much more important than mere business. However, this doesn't diminish the value of the book's practical advice about borrowing techniques from marketing and sales.

    Disclosure: I am friends with the author.

    Bob Chassell

    Writing (mostly science fiction) by my friend Bob Chassell who recently died.

    Solidarity Economy and Free Software

    Personal Declaration of Richard Stallman and Euclides Mance on Solidarity Economy and Free Software.

    Falkvinge articles

    I have reposted some of Rick Falkvinge's articles. As posted on his site, you can't see them in a browser without running some nonfree Javascript code which is apparently non-free. These versions show the same text, without the obstacle.

    Long-term action items

    Political Articles

    These are my political articles that are not related to the GNU operating system or free software. For GNU-related articles, see the GNU philosophy directory. You can also order copies of my book, Free Software, Free Society, 3rd edition', signed or not signed.

    Political notes

    "Those who profess to favor freedom, yet depreciate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters. This struggle may be a moral one; or it may be a physical one; or it may be both moral and physical; but it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will."

    Here are notes about various issues I care about, usually with links to more information. The current notes are here. For all previous notes, see this page.

    See this page for information on efforts to maintain links in the political notes.

    Political notes about the 2001 G8 summit in Genoa, Italy are being archived on their own page.


    Richard Stallman's bio and publicity photos, and other things of interest to the press, have been moved to a separate page.

    Travel experiences

    Photos about my travels

    Scientific Links

    Some humor

    The berry torture.

    The Free Software Song, by Richard M. Stallman. You can listen to a performance of the song: Free Software Song performed by Thor Here is a variant of this song called "The Free Firmware Song".

    A song parody, Colors of the Lisp, by Jefferson Carpenter.

    Earth under attack from planet Koch.

    On doxing, and how to spell it.

    Futon Physics

    A Spanish cartoon: La Ruleta Española. thumbnail

    The Night before M-x-mas

    Here I am wearing my "power tie".

    Wine snobs get their comeuppance.

    Here I am struggling to open a bottle of water.

    My application to an join Marian Henley's ex-boyfriends list.

    My funny poetry and song parodies.

    My Cartoons

    My Puns in English (Little Leaguer, August 2019).

    My Puns in Spanish (New pun: Apostasía April 2019)

    My Puns in French (New pun: Microsoft à l'école July 2019)

    My Puns in Portuguese

    My Puns in Italian (New pun: Quale pesce fa starnutire? New 10/2018)

    My Puns in German (New 02/2016)

    Linguistic Swifties (Now with: Wintu, Penutian, Cochiti, Taos, and Towa.)

    I am a
     Saint In the Church Of Emacs --Saint IGNUcius-- The Church of Emacs will soon be officially listed by at least one person as his religion for census purposes.

    There are no godfathers in the Church of Emacs, since there are no gods, but you can be someone's editorfather.

    Stallman Does Dallas: "I have to warn you that Texans have been known to have an adverse reaction to my personality…"

    The Dalai Lama today announced the official release of Yellow Hat GNU/Linux.

    Pre-Zen Studies.

    I found a funny song about the Mickey Mouse Copyright Act (officially the Sonny Bono Copyright Act) which extended copyright retroactively by 20 years on works made as early as the 1920s.

    If you are a geek and read Spanish, you will love Raulito el Friki, who said "Hello, world!" immediately after he was born. Here's an archive of this now-defunct comic strip.

    Sleeping with Stallman at MIT.

    Un malentendido gracioso.

    ESR's favorite programming language: Objectivist C.

    American Extremists

    My Small Mouth

    The huns and the writs.

    No Kludges in Cluj (June 2014)

    Hammer into Anvil


    Made for You (December 2012) (local copy) Esperanto translation

    A science fiction story: Jinnetic Engineering (in Portuguese, Farsi, Spanish, Armenian, Russian, French, and Italian).

    The Right to Read


    My book of essays about the philosophy of Software Freedom, is available from the GNU Press.

    Stallman on Love

    Love and Dance

    My Childhood Sweetheart

    Made for You

    My Former Personal Ad

    Non-Political Articles

    Am I Doctor Stallman?

    Avec des chapeaux French song parody.

    My radio program of Music from Georgia, originally broadcast on WUOG in Athens, Georgia on Oct 13, 2014.

    Resolving the trolley problem

    Quantum Theory and Abortion Rights

    A proposal for gender neutrality in Spanish, suitable for both speech and writing.

    Origin of the POSIX name.

    On Hacking: In June 2000, while visiting Korea, I did a fun hack that clearly illustrates the original and true meaning of the word "hacker".

    My Childhood Sweetheart

    Love and Dance

    Predicting the attack on Pearl Harbor

    Certificate of confusion



    I would like to thank:

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    Verbatim copying and redistribution of this entire page are permitted provided this notice is preserved.
    Verbatim copying and redistribution of any of the photos in the photos subdirectory is permitted under the Creative Commons Noderivs license version 3.0 or later. You can copy and redistribute the photo of me playing music to the butterfly under the Creative Commons Noderivs Nocommercial license version 3.0 or later. Any other photos of me in this (the toplevel) directory may be copied and redistributed under the Creative Commons Noderivs license version 3.0