Will Y2K reinstill old value systems?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Will "Mind Your Own Business!" replace "I don't think you should spank your boy" when food is scarce and people have to scramble just to assure their own kids survive? Will the prevailing atmosphere of enforced tolerance and acceptance of nontraditional lifestyles and roles be jeopardized by nitty gritty survival of the fittest reality? Will the women who survive be the ones who remember ancient roles and responsibilities? Will the men who survive remember their ancient roles and responsibilities? What kind of reception will green hair and nose rings get under survival situations? Will we welcome all views or will truth return then to sort the chaff from the wheat?

-- Ann Fisher (zyax55b@prodigy.com), December 16, 1998


Minding your own business works with matters of adornment as well as child-rearing. And green hair blends well with the landscape; that bush you pass on your way to church might not be a bush, pardner...


-- E. Coli (nunayo@beeswax.com), December 16, 1998.

For newbies (with a literary/philosophical bent-no others need apply) who didn't see the first iteration of this poem several months ago: You want values? WE GOT THAT! Please note the date this was written, BTW.


The Gods of the Copybook Headings by Rudyard Kipling - 1919

As I pass through my incarnations in every age and race, I make my proper prostrations to the Gods of the Market-Place. Peering through reverent fingers I watch them flourish and fall, And the Gods of the Copybook Headings, I notice, outlast them all.

We were living in trees when they met us. They showed us each in turn That Water would certainly wet us, as Fire would certainly burn: But we found them lacking in Uplift, Vision and Breadth of Mind, So we left them to teach the Gorillas while we followed the March of Manlund.

We moved as the Spirit listed. They never altered their pace, Being neither cloud nor wind-borne like the Gods of the Market-Place; But they always caught up with our progress, and presently word would come That a tribe had been wiped off its icefield, or the lights had gone out in Rome.

With the Hopes that our World is built on they were utterly out of touch They denied that the Moon was Stilton; they denied she was even Dutch They denied that Wishes were Horses; they denied that a Pig had Wings So we worshipped the Gods of the Market Who promised these beautiful things.

When the Cambrian measures were forming They promised perpetual peace. They swore, if we gave them our weapons that the wars of the tribes would cease. But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe, And the Gods of the Copybook Heading said: "Stick to the Devil you know."

On the first Feminian Sandstones we were promised the Fuller Life (Which started by loving our neighbour and ended by loving his wife) Till our women had no more children and the men lost reason and faith, And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "The Wages of Sin is Death."

In the Carboniferous Epoch we were promised abundance for all, By robbing selected Peter to pay for collective Paul; But, though we had plenty of money, there was nothing our money could buy, And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "If you don't work you die."

Then the Gods of the Market tumbled, and their smooth-tongued wizards withdrew, And the hearts of the meanest were humbled and began to believe it was true That All is not Gold that Glitters, and Two and Two make Four -- And the Gods of the Copybook Headings limped up to explain it once more.

* * * * *

As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man -- There are only four things certain since Social Progress began -- That the Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mice, And the burnt Fool's bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire -- And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins As surely as Water will wet us, as surely as Fire will burn The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return!


-- nemo... (nemo@deepsix.com), December 16, 1998.

What do you call the old value system.......

There is, of course, a false picture of "the good old days" that inhabits the mindset of most people. The good old days weren't that good. Survival was very difficult, and the 'good' part rarely applied, and when it did it only applied to folks of the 'right' color and 'right' sex (male) and the 'right' religion and the 'right' sexual orientation etc........

Ancient roles and responsibilities?????? Are we to go back to living in caves and clubbing our women over the head to teach them respect?.....

No, there never were any 'good old days' that surpassed the freedom, health and dignity most enjoy today, at least in the west. Sure, you may not agree or like some peoples lifestyles........however, they may not like yours either. And you sure don't see them criticizing you because your hairs not green.

Yup, the good old days when the Roman church killed and tortured millions because they disagreed with 'their' system. Or was it the good old days when John Calvin, once getting in power, had a man put to death for disagreeing with his system or belief system.

If you are so in love the idea of a system with fixed rules with mens and womens roles clearly defined, I have a suggestion for you.

Move to Afghanistan.........the Taliban have implemented a system that may appeal to you.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), December 16, 1998.

A full blown y2k disaster will almost certainly destroy many of the currently fashionable assumptions about human beings and human nature. For example, feminism is dead on January 1, 2000 if y2k is really nasty. Why? Because the idea of gender equality is only plausible in a social situation in which physical strength and ruthlessness are not necessary for survival.

Women are just as good as men at functioning in a high tech society in which you don't have to be physically strong or fast or willing to use brute force to survive, but they cannot survive as easily on their own in the kind of world that existed throughout human history until this century. This is why men have always dominated until very recently. In the aftermath of a y2k catastrophe, physical strength will once again be absolutely vital for survival, which means men will dominate once again.

-- cody varian (cody@y2ksurvive.com), December 16, 1998.

Now you've started me thinking--always a dangerous situation! Racial equality may also be an idea whose time has come and gone if y2k is really devastating. The need to survive under difficult conditions will often cause people to band together and people tend to band (or bond perhaps) with people who look and act and think like themselves. They get tribal.

Those who are perceived as different are obviously not of the same tribe and will be avoided. Therefore, a group of black people will tend to welcome other black individuals as possible members of the tribe and will tend to reject white persons as non-members. The same is true of white "tribes" regarding black individuals. Members of other groups or tribes will not be regarded as equal in any way. "Every man for himself" will become "every tribe for itself".

-- cody varian (cody@y2ksurvive.com), December 16, 1998.


excellent thesis and valid point,


the wild card may be that there may be enough of a crtical mass of us guys left who do get it ( feminism, et al), that the gains for feminine equaity recently won will not all be lost - at least we can all work toward that

Perry Arnett

-- Perry Arnett (pjarnett@pdqnet.net), December 16, 1998.

actually, MYOB is *already* a response used by both Conservatives and Libertarians against unwanted intrusions by those on the left. About the only difference you will see is that the vast majority of conservative folks who have been targetted for intimidation by the left of center media wont be intimidated anymore.

So if someone doesn't like absolute rules, they should stay away from communities that have them. (hint: anyone with funny hair and nose rings may be offered a meal, but then they will be sent along on their way...and watched to make certain they go.)

Arlin Adams

-- Arlin H. Adams (ahadams@ix.netcom.com), December 16, 1998.


-- JJJJ (jiuttebrug@jbrongnw.fuckhole), December 17, 1998.

Why do we have to go back to the 'good old days'? Those days existed in another time and place. Are we really so rigid and dogmatic that even those of us who pride ourselves on 'getting it' can't even envision the possibility of forming something radically different. Mind you, not in the immediate crisis, but something other than what we've been sold into currently. There is an opportunity to form something entirely different, and all we can envision is the slavery of today, or the slaveries of yesterday. How would you go about changing the world, if only in your own small portion? The panic will dissipate, many may die, and there will probably be many years of hardship. But, after that, there may be a new opportunity, and that is what i look forward to. Think of the challenge.

-- Damian Solorzano (oggy1@webtv.net), December 17, 1998.

The way old value systems might come back in 2000 is the difference between the way people act in prosperous economic times vs. a depression. Women's skirts got longer as the stock market dropped 90% in the early 1930's.

When times get tough, people are forced to consider the welfare of their various family members. The biggest return to an old values system would be in family members eating meals together again, a tradition that's been dying since the 1960's. Everything is based on convenience or time-saving capabilities now, but a more serious attitude about family responsibilities is what I think Y2K will do.

-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), December 17, 1998.

I don't see how the length of women's skirts has anything to do with economics ;)


-- Leo (leo_champion@hotmail.com), December 17, 1998.

Another way to put it is what happened in the late 1960's. The mid- and late 1960's were boom times economically, and it allowed people the luxury of change, debate, and questioning authority. The unemployment rate in 1968 and 1969 was 3.5%.

There was a recession in 1970 that took the unemployment rate up to about 6%. When instant jobs aren't available, people become more cautious and conservative. By 1971, news analysts were commenting on how protests, social change, and mini-skirts were on the way out.

-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), December 17, 1998.

Kevin is right, but this time around, I'm afraid that what we'll be wearing as skirt is a potato bag ;)

-- Chris (catsy@pond.com), December 17, 1998.

Cody, good thought provoking points. But, I think you should factor in the use of firearms by women, an "equalizer" if there ever was one!

-- Jack (jsprat@eld.net), December 17, 1998.

Perhaps we will spiral forward rather than revert.

Hopefully we have learned some valuable lessons about overt dependency on organizations and technology existing for their own survival, without concern for the people who make it possible. For the moment, lets just look back at some good old days during WWII. After Pearl Harbor, the country woke up big time and mobilized to meet a world- wide challenge. Many men went off to war, and the women went off to work. My mother was one. At the age of 20 she took the training classes necessary to become a mechanic in an airplane manufacturing factory. Later she took flight training classes(with Amelia Earhart) as the inspiration, qualified and joined the Air Force to become a trained ferry pilot. Many, many people met the challenge of their time, each in their own way. The whole country went on rationing to conserve and share the limited supplies. The lessons go on and on, and many of those people are still with us.

What will wake us up? Several possible timings in 1999. Is there time to prepare? Yes. Perhaps not all at the same level of preparation. Will we remember our responsibilities to our families and each other? Yes, I rather think so. Fortunately the spirit of people is not so dead as the computers that support us. And we have the wonderful Divine gifts for thinking creatively, and planning work- around solutions to all upcoming problems. This challenge could well launch us into instilling a new and different value system, based on team-work and cooperation and some of that old time pioneer spirit.


-- Diane J. Squire (sacredspaces@yahoo.com), December 17, 1998.

I think Jack had it just about right. Physical strength is no match for firepower. If it really does go Milne, those with access to firearms will have little to fear from unarmed thugs, except those who are well organized, strike suddenly, use fire as a weapon, etc. Of course, many of the bad guys will be armed as well but it certainly levels the playing field, doesn't it? A granny with a 20 gauge is a WHOLE lot more deadly than a 280 lb bad-a** biker with a tire iron. Case in point: the American West circa 1880. The introduction of the pistol cartridge and the six shot revolver forever changed the balance of power on a tactical level. The 98 lb weaklings, if armed, were no longer at the mercy of the the physically stronger. Ever hear of Billy the Kid?

"But his age and his size took the teller by surprise and the word spread... about Billy the Kid" -Billy Joel

-- aaa (anon@mous.com), December 18, 1998.

No, they (values sytems) will get worse.

Tragedy and Pressure, and change the they require, brings up the both the best and worse in people. However, I fear that the fundemental values needed to bring out the best have no been so eroded in so many by our "please-me first" media dominated culture that recovery may not occur.

Example: The crude, intolerate, rantings of the trolls the last few weeks. Their pleasure to shock, irritate, and degrade. Question: If they came on a traffic accident on a rural road, would they comfort the injured and go for help; or would they rob the trapped of their valuables and cash?

Example: The riots in LA, using as an excuse the R. King trial verdict. for looting and robbery/assault based on race.

Example: The very real fears expressed here of robbery and theft by rioters, thugs, or organized bands fater Y2K breaks down communication and authority.

Let's face it. If we felt that we (as a group) could trust "society" to behave itself based on iternal self control when the threat of police action against theft and robbery/rape is removed, then there never would occur a "fortress mentality" among survivial-minded folk who are preparing.

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (cook.r@csaatl.com), December 18, 1998.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ