I’ve been spending the last few days emergently migrating one of my Linux machines over to a replacement, and tonight, I found myself in need of remembering a command-line option to the utility su. And while looking it up, I discovered a little tract at the bottom of the manual page that left me a bit baffled.

Why GNU `su' does not support the `wheel' group
(This section is by Richard Stallman.)
Sometimes a few of the users try to hold total power over all the
rest. For example, in 1984, a few users at the MIT AI lab decided to
seize power by changing the operator password on the Twenex system and
keeping it secret from everyone else. (I was able to thwart this coup
and give power back to the users by patching the kernel, but I wouldn't
know how to do that in Unix.)
However, occasionally the rulers do tell someone. Under the usual
`su' mechanism, once someone learns the root password who sympathizes
with the ordinary users, he or she can tell the rest. The "wheel
group" feature would make this impossible, and thus cement the power of
the rulers.
I'm on the side of the masses, not that of the rulers. If you are
used to supporting the bosses and sysadmins in whatever they do, you
might find this idea strange at first.

While I’ve heard that Richard Stallman is just plain crazy, I guess I never understood exactly how crazy. Anyone out there have the root password to his machines?