Y2k as Wishful thinking for The World weary ?

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Isn't there an element of wishful thinking in the more apolocyptic Y2k scenarios ? I get the impression that a significant proportion of the population in the developed world is dissillusioned with life in the late 20th century, and is predisposed to the idea of the whole shebang going phuttt.... (see Gary North - one can detect an element of gleeful anticipation in his comments...)

Just a thought - any ideas ??

-- Dave (deales@dircon.co.uk), December 02, 1998


Maybe for some people. I've seen some posts where people can't wait for it to all come down. I understand what you are saying.

As for myself, I do not want this to happen in any way shape or form. Oh, I get it alright on an intellectual level but emotionally? That's a totally different issue.

I just found out that the DoD has an order to make my city a hub for domestic emergency operations. I live in Nashville, TN. We have three major interstates running through this city so it only makes sense. It is logical. Intellectually I can deal with it. But how did I respond to this news? I went and had a good cry. It just all seems so surreal.

I think that most of those posters are dealing with the issue from an intellectual perspective. They are keeping their emotions in check so to speak. At least I hope, it is just their defense mechanism kicking in. I would hate to think that they really want this to happen.

-- Anna McKay Ginn (annaginn@aol.com), December 02, 1998.

Yes. As Andrei Codrescu has said, in another context:

"We watch the rising flood waters, secretly hoping to drown."


-- Runway Cat (runway_cat@hotmail.com), December 02, 1998.

Dave, I don't know about others, but Gary North I'm certain he's wishing it to happen. He's a Christian Reconstructionist, pretty extreme. In his view, the worse scenario would be an opportunity to take over and spread his word.

Like Anna said, some people find thrill in the upcoming disasters, others are simply realistic and prepare for the worse, hope for the best.

-- Chris (catsy@pond.com), December 02, 1998.

phuttt ?

the whole shebang ?

I think that's probably true in any age. And, in any age there are people who would be devestated and people who would view it as an opportunity. Some people like death, and some are able to rebuild afterwards. I don't like death. At least I don't think I do. I hope I turn out to be pretty good at rebuilding...

-- pshannon (pshannon@inch.com), December 02, 1998.

Anna, where did you get your information about the DoD and what is is the domestice emergency operation. How does it effect Y2K. I am about 90 miles northof Nashville.

-- Linda A. (adahi@muhlon.com), December 02, 1998.


Oh, yes, many people want something like a Y2K apocalypse.

A portion of these people have viewpoints not currently accepted in the societal mainstream. A vast upheaval offers the hope that they'll come out more "on top" than they can possibly be now. Gary North and the other Christian Reconstructionists are in this category.

Some other folks feel stressed by technological aspects of their lives, and wish for a simpler existence. If a Y2K disaster didn't hurt _too_ much, maybe it would "take us back" to the "good old days".

Y2K timing, coinciding with the dramatic calendar year rollover, also appeals to the magical thinking in all of us.

Generally speaking, magical thinking does not handle reality as well as realistic thinking. OTOH, it is realistic to prepare for the probable actions and decisions of magical-thinking people.

-- No Spam Please (anon@ymous.com), December 03, 1998.

You aren't kidding bub. There is so much NWO BS on this board now, mixed in with all kinds of millenial end of the world crap - that I could just scream. It gets very hard to filter out the reality of Y2K problems from the general "I hope this corrupt civilization/society/country goes down" garbage. If it was just one group we could ignore them - but I have seen messages all the way from hemp promoters to total environment-heads to guys like North who want to rebuild the world in a Christian image (well, THEIR idea of a Christian image - they pulled up the roots of their religon years ago and burnt them, and then sowed salt on the ground. Then they blew it up and burnt it again with napalm.). If TEOTWAWKI really happened - these guys would be fighting over the remains like wildcats. Is very curious - I work with a huge number of engineers and CS types - and have talked with many of them about Y2K problems. Most think we will have problems - but almost all put it at a 3 (diane scale) or less. If the general consenus among the people in the engineering and computer fields is that low (my own take is about a 4), you are going to have to come up with something more than the rumour and third party claims (my wife's sister's husband works in the power plant they built last year and he says they are going down) that have poured in over the last three months to convince me that the end is near!

-- Paul Davis (davisp1953@yahoo.com), December 03, 1998.

God, no.

y2k may be an opportunity for a lot of people to achieve big things. But it's also going to destroy so much of value to humanity -the highest levels of science (I don't give a damn about the arts :) ). It'll cause millions of GOOD people to die (screw the tens of millions of jerks..), and quite possibly worst of all, it could seriously interrupt the world supply of lemon vodka.


-- Leo (leo_champion@hotmail.com), December 03, 1998.

Re: Lemon Vodka.

You need grain, yeast, lemons, a still. If it works out like you think there will be no government demanding taxes, no regulations, no multinational drinks companies to compete with. Sounds like quite a good business opportunity, if you can sort out the lemon supply. Otherwise, try some other sorts of fruit. Sloes are good and don't even need cultivating.

Not completely tongue-in-cheek. Also an example of the sort of attitude that one needs to confront the end-of-worlders with.

-- Nigel Arnot (nra@maxwell.ph.kcl.ac.uk), December 03, 1998.

Like the person who was afraid to fly said " I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was up there than to be up there wishing I was on the ground." When TSHTF, you will all wish you had the life you used to have. Unless you lived in poverty and had no hope of getting out, you can't appreciate what you have. God says "It rains on the just and the unjust alike". You can't imagine all the grief and suffering that will happen. Anyone left alive would be out of his mind to prefer that over the comforts and conveniences that we have now.

-- Herbert Johnson (HERB87@JUNO.COM), December 03, 1998.

I will grant that Gary North appears to fit this claim, as he has apparently been making war on the banking system for decades. As I have stated previously, even if there were no Y2K problem, I am sure that there would nevertheless exist www.garynorth.com, where one could find All Kinds Of Reasons why the fractional reserve banking system's crumble was imminent.

But the reality is that North is very much the exception rather than the rule for the doom-and- gloom crowd. Rather, it is normal to wish that life will just keep on keeping on, as we have always known it. And this is exactly why Y2K denial is still so prevelant. And I am including here people who understand the specifics of the Y2K problem, but refuse to see the high probability of an Infomagic-like scenario.

To summarize: I think it is far more likely that people's wish to keep things as they are explains Y2K denial, rather than people's "dissillusioned with life in the late 20th century" explaining why many (like myself) see a meltdown coming.

-- Jack (jsprat@eld.net), December 03, 1998.

Jack wrote --And this is exactly why Y2K denial is still so prevelant. And I am including here people who understand the specifics of the Y2K problem, but refuse to see the high probability of an Infomagic-like scenario.--

Again, it is only your own opinion as to the severity of the problems. Others are not in denial because they refuse to see the high probability of an Infomagic-like scenario. They have looked at the same information and believe there is a low probability of this type of scenario.

You must remember,Infomagic believers are most certainly in the minority. Most prudent people are planning ahead for minor disruptions and/or as a type of insurance against major problems. I prepare as 'insurance' as that is the prudent thing to do. Same reason why I have car insurance. However, I certainly don't expect to have a car accident.

I think it would be nice if we could put this 'denial' word away for a while. It's used far too often to slur those who simply have a difference of opinion.

Or even better yet, used as follows: One night, on my holidays to Cairo, fell into the river and found myself in denial.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), December 03, 1998.

Craig, I may indeed be overextending regarding use of the word denial. But I still stand by my assertion that it is far more likely that people are letting their wish to keep things "as they are and have always been" cloud their views, rather than the question posed by this thread -- i.e., are people who see a meltdown coming influenced by wanting to see things crumble.

And lets remember, Y2K will be what Y2K will be, regardless of how bad people think its going to be. Even if you believe that the probability of high impact is low, there is still a good argument to be made to prepare as if the probability was high, because you lose relatively little by doing so.

-- Jack (jsprat@eld.net), December 03, 1998.

Jack There are prudent and imprudent levels of preparation for Y2k at both ends of the spectrum. IMHO leaving a high paying job and hiding out in the sticks, using no electricity and living by kerosene and candlelight is as bad or worse than no preparation at all. Even the govt. recommends a level of readiness for emergencies for individual citizens that is much higher than most people ever reach. And that level is lower than I feel is prudent - for flood, Y2K or any disaster that might require you to live for a period away from your home or without power for a time. But I don't try to prepare for the end of the world - which is much different than prudent preparation for disruptions in power or transportation.

-- Paul Davis (davisp1953@yahoo.com), December 03, 1998.

Paul, no one knows whether "leaving a high paying job and hiding out in the sticks, using no electricity and living by kerosene and candlelight is as bad or worse than no preparation at all", because no one knows what Y2K will bring, and thus what level of preparation is in fact needed. If the kind of meltdown predicted by Infomagic et al occurs (e.g., no electricity at all, period), then this extreme level of preparation would certainly be a "prudent" thing to do! We can discuss what is "possible" and "probable" with Y2K, which we in fact do all the time on this forum, but each of us must determine what is prudent for our own lives. There are really no "right" or "wrong" answers here, just what is "reasonable" in view of what one believes.

And, getting back to the original kickoff post on this thread: It is natural to want to believe that such an extreme level of preparation such as this is not going to be necessary, and that everything will work out ok. It is unnatural to want such a thing to happen because you are tired of the modern day to day rat-race or whatever. Thus, I claim that most people's contemplation of a meltdown scenario is going to be colored by a natural avoidance of wanting to consider it, not a wishing for it. And that most doom-and-gloomers have probably come to the conclusion that a meltdown is coming in spite of their natural tendency to want to avoid considering such an event. (Other than the few outliers that have their own peculiar agendas, like Gary North.)

-- Jack (jsprat@eld.net), December 03, 1998.

No one who has ever lived under martial law, relishes the thought of a TEOTWAWKI scenario.

No one who has ever had to live on the economy in a third world country is very enthusiastic about it either.

I would submit that those who look forward to a total meltdown, are at best misguided idealists, and at worst folks who wont make it through the first week if such a thing actually occurs. On the other hand, I would also submit that anyone who doesn't make prudent preparations to be able to deal with the simple fact that such a scenario *could* become a reality is also unlikely to survive any serious discontinuity.

In other words, I don't look forward to it, but I do expect it, and am preparing for it.

Arlin Adams

-- Arlin H. Adams (ahadams@ix.netcom.com), December 03, 1998.

Personally, I just got a great new job with a bright future, making good money doing something I love. I think this internet stuff has the potential to change the world in very positive ways, and I'm excited about all the great medical advances I've been reading about lately. And I just ordered half a ton of grain.

-- anon (anon@anon.net), December 05, 1998.

I have not necessarily wished for TEOTWAWKI but I have thought it would happen for a couple decades. I think the present way the world is organized needs to change, and for those that might jump upon me...I am not hoping for one world govt. I think for the original question,..there are among us that might look for a way to start something new...not possible if all the Land of Oa (I mean the fiction, not Down Under) is still flourishing.

Like it or not...systems go through normal life and dying and death paradigms...we are, if you read at all, in the dying part of the present cultural/social system paradigm....5000 years is a long time for a generational system...not long for the planet,..but you know what I mean...we are due for a major shake up.

-- Donna Barthuley (moment@pacbell.net), December 05, 1998.

Lets just keep in mind that the result of this "major shakeup" might very well be a much worse world than we have now!

-- Jack (jsprat@eld.net), December 05, 1998.

Well, not exactly *wishing* for it, but...

Y2K: Gift/Opportunity (new!) -- Transformative Potential:

-- Alan Lewis (aelewis@provide.net), December 08, 1998.

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