Is programming more like an engineering or it is more like an art?
What matters more in advancing a software project, a sound technology or a sound team? The team, obviously. But how much?
I consider Python to be quite a Lisp-y language, clean and nice for rapid development, with lots of libraries. One message on comp.lang.python said "I never understood why LISP was a good idea until I started playing with python".
Common Lisp has got fancy compilers that compile to native code, so it runs typically ~10 times faster than Python, see e.g. Peter Norvig's Python for Lisp Programmers. It's a dynamically typed language though, so it runs somehow slower (say 50%-100%) than statically typed OCaml/C++. Can one optimise things further?