Comparisons & Language Wars
Ultimately, however, the question needs no answer, since "speed of development" is not the only or even the most important factor in development. Take into account issues of maintainability, quality of code, performance and such, and you've muddied the question even more, making this a religious question and one that has no meaningful answer, nor a need to be answered in a simple way.
- The Philosopher's Song, Ruby and Python
- Do Programmers Need Seat Belts?, speaking of Mr. Rabbit, Mr. Bear, and their flying machines
- Tour de Babel
- C, C++, Lisp, Java, Perl, Ruby, Python
- You just have to know C. Why? Because for all practical purposes, every computer in the world you'll ever use is a von Neumann machine, and C is a lightweight, expressive syntax for the von Neumann machine's capabilities.
- C++ is dumb, and you can't write smart systems in a dumb language. Languages shape the world. Dumb languages make for dumb worlds.
- The original brilliant guys and gals here only allowed two languages in Amazon's hallowed source repository: C and Lisp.
- If C is the closest language to modeling how computers work, Lisp is the closest to modeling how computation works.
- Java is simultaneously the best and the worst thing that has happened to computing in the past 10 years.
- It's like that old bicycle you've put 100k or 200k miles on, and you'll always have a warm fuzzy spot for it, even though you've since moved on to a more modern bike that weighs 5 lbs and doesn't make your ass hurt so much.
- it took me about 3 days before I was more comfortable using Ruby than I was in Perl, after eight years of Perl hacking. It's so consistent that you start being able to guess how things will work, and you're right most of the time. It's beautiful. And fun. And practical.
- The Python community has long been the refuge for folks who finally took the red pill and woke up from the Perl Matrix.
- Python would have taken over the world, but it has two fatal flaws: the whitespace thing, and the permafrost thing.
- Language Wars by JoelSpolsky
- How to make Lisp go faster than C - paper by Didier Verna
- In this paper, we explain how to tune Lisp code for performance by introducing the proper type declarations, using the appropriate data structures and compiler information.
Unless I'm writing a kernel, a device driver, a virtual machine, or an interface to a C or C++ library, writing in C is a probably premature optimization. 
There are two types of programming languages; the ones that people bitch about and the ones that no one uses. BjarneStroustrup
If I were chained to a bench and 'perl' was the only thing that could open the lock, I'd probably cut my hand off. GeraldPenn
Perl is another example of filling a tiny, short-term need, and then being a real problem in the longer term.
Programming in C++ is premature optimization. --comp.lang.python  
Think of C++ as an object-oriented assembly language.