who's who &IMHO

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What does IMHO mean? Are there other commom acronyms I should know? And who are North, Hamasaki, Yourdon, etc. Are these the Wise Men of y2k? Can anyone give me a simple brief on these people w/o techno jargon? How and why are they credible or not? How many people are really in the know about y2k and our economy? Do they stand to gain $$$ from this whole thing? Who is credible w/o financial ties? Thanks for your help. I''m doing a crash course on all this stuff. Johan

-- johan (reisch@c-zone.net), August 26, 1998



Here are a few abbreviations: IMHO = In my humble opinion; BTW = by the way; on Y2k forums, GI = gets it; DGI = Doesn't get it (you, Johan, are currently beginning to Get It).

North is Gary North, who has the most extensive collection of online documents regarding Y2k, to be found at www.garynorth.com. He generally writes his own opinions about each document he lists, which are highly skewed towards the expectation of total collapse of the infrastructure, government and society based on his religious convictions. However, even if you disagree with his personal opinions, IMHO he has done and continues to do a great service by finding and posting an enormous quantity of documents. He also has a series of excellent discussion forums on various related topics (food, equipment, relocation, etc) each moderated by someone with some knowledge of the area. For example, his Food and Food Storage forum is moderated by Al Durtschi, who is with Walton Feed (www.waltonfeed.com), and is expert and evenhanded in his views. Gary North is not making any money off Y2k. However, North is a perennial gloom-and-doomer, so some people discredit him for that, as well as for his strong religious views.

Hamasaki is a full-fledged computer geek with extensive knowledge of what is going on Y2k-wise, and a unique vocabulary and style. Quite recently Cory Hamasaki published a posting indicating that he has become convinced that Y2k will create major, major problems. I don't recall his website URL, but someone else will no doubt supply it here shortly.

Ed Yourdon is the moderator of this particular forum, and is the author of Timebomb 2000. I think his bio is available on the homepage - he is the author of over 20 books on computing.

Another name of note is Ed Yardeni (www.yardeni.com), who is the chief economist for Deutsche Bank, and one of the world's leading economists. He says there is a 70% chance of a worldwide recession at least as severe as the 1973-74 oil embargo recession. He hosted a big internet conference last week on the 500 Days to Go date. He warned the Bank for International Settlements on April 7 that there needs to be a world wide concerted effort to resolve Y2k problems and work on contingency plans. The text of that speech and much more is on his website. Yardeni was one of the first economists after the stock market crash of 1987 who told people to buy, buy, buy. So he is not a perennial gloom-and-doomer.

Another well-known name is Peter de Jager, a Canadian computer guy who has been warning about Y2k for several years, and travels around the world. Strangely enough, de Jager keeps saying that "if we all work hard, everything will be OK", even though he knows people aren't working very hard on this. He thinks that folks who suggest you might want to save yourself from all the potential problems (such as by relocating, quitting your job as a computer programmer for some organization that is bound to fail, getting yourself a little stash of cash, etc) is like rowing an empty lifeboat away from the Titanic.

Don't get too carried away with the idea that if someone is making money from Y2k that you should discredit their views. If someone selling fire extinguishers points out to me that there is a pile of trash likely to start a fire, I check out the facts. If he is correct, I will take some action, which might even include buying a f

-- Dan Hunt (dhunt@hostscorp.com), August 26, 1998.

garynorth.com He's an economist/historian with a history of forecasting financial doom. Runs his site at great personal expense; sells a newsletter. Wrote "Government By Emergency" - very informative. Believes ultimately in some kind of biblical theocracy, otherwise quite sane and rather witty. Working hard to bring us the lowdown, for free, every day. Visit "links", then go to "newest links", at abouve URL. Ed Yourdon has a bio on this site. Making money hand over fist on his bestselling book - but maybe that means he's written something necessary and useful. He's quite restrained in his presentation. Yardeni is some kind of economist, understates the impact, IMHO (stands for "in my humble opinion"); I'm at the point where I'd rather gather useful information about personal survival than hear asinine accusations about how those survival efforts are some kind of betrayal of the social contract... My advice: don't look for PEOPLE who are credible. Look for INFORMATION that is credible and fits into some kind of pattern. Keep focused on what the most important questions are to you. I think the most important questions are 1. Is this really a problem? 2. How severe will the impact of this thing be? After many, many hours of reading writing and thinking, I've determined that the answers are 1.Yes, and 2. Catastrophic. The next question will be "what must I do to mitigate the damaging effects on myself and those I care for?" For a good first tutorial on the problem, check out Y2chaos.com's "5 steps to understanding Y2k." Follow the links, make up your mind - good luck.


-- E. Coli (nunayo@beeswax.com), August 26, 1998.

Johan, you can just read articles without commentary at: www.year2000.com/y2karticles.html

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), August 26, 1998.

With regard to the statements that Dr. North provides his site at great personal expense, here follows the preamble to his discussion forums:

First, my thanks to all of you who sent in money to keep the forums alive. I was able to pay off the old bill and maybe half of the final bill.

If the forums help you, you can help keep them funded. A little goes a long way. If you will send in a dollar every time you get $100 of value, that should do it. I will not go to a subscription system.

I know this sounds hokey, but it would solve the problem. Put a dollar in each of half a dozen envelopes. Adress them. Then, when you think you've got your money's worth, stamp it and mail it. The envelopes remind you. The dollar won't bankrupt you.

Here's the address:

-- Small Child (noclothes@emperor.com), August 26, 1998.

Cory Hamasaki's Current DC Y2K Weather Reports

Read all about TEOTWAWKI...


-- Max Dixon (Max.Dixon@gte.net), August 26, 1998.


A handy searcher of search engines is http://www.dogpile.com where you can enter a phrase and it will go out and do that search on over a dozen search engines. Very handy for doing "shotgun" type searches. You need to go to individual engines to fully utilize boolian operators AND, OR, BUT NOT, etc. This will help you find articles both pro and con on the people you refer to.

As for personal gain, anybody remember Joe Granville? Highly reputed stock market guru who was able to actually move markets a bit since so many people followed his advice. Well he predicted a crash in the early 1980's, it was an "everybody out of the pool", not a "expect a strong correction" call. He was wildly wrong, it totally ended his career.

This is what will happen to North, McAlvany(sp?), and others if Y2K is just a blip. They'll have plenty of company however, starting with the GAO (Govt. Accounting Office), Nat. Air Traffic Controllers Assoc., Capers Jones, Westergaard, Yourdon, et cetra ad infinatum.

E. Coli makes a VERY good point. Concentrate on the message, not the messenger. Example Gary North understands less about electricity than I do about brain surgery. His often mentioned (and now unfortunately repeated by others) that it takes 6 times the power to restart a power grid demonstrates that when it comes to power systems - he DGI. I wouldn't expect this of him though, he's a historian and a darn fine researcher as evidenced by his very useful website. I don't like North's view point on many things but his comments about people that wildly DGI, are very humorous and with Y2K we DO need to keep laughing to prevent crying.

-- Ken Seger (kenseger@earthlink.net), August 27, 1998.


Gary North DOES NOT have the most extensive collection of documents regarding Y2K. What he has is a lot of links to articles about Y2K, many of which are written by misinformed people themselves. Most of the info. on his site is not researched very well at all. Whatever his site's purpose is, it won't teach you much about the problem and its solutions. His so-called "forums" are nothing like this one, where you can get opposing viewpoints.

There are lots of good sites about Y2K. Try these sites if you haven't already: http://www.mitre.org/research/y2k/docs/Y2K_SITEMAP.html http://www.y2ktimebomb.com/ http://www.it2000.com/ http://www.itpolicy.gsa.gov/mks/yr2000/y2kconf/g7conf.htm http://www.itaa.org/year2000.htm http://www.year2000.com/ http://y2k.gov/java/index.htm http://www.csis.org http://www.jbs.org/y2k.htm http://www.nerc.com

-- Buddy Y. (buddy@bellatlantic.net), August 27, 1998.

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