Guaranteed Economic Collapsegreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
POSTED TO csy2k:
Foreign Nations Trail U.S.On Y2K Fixes, Expert Says By Stephen Barr Washington Post Staff Writer Thursday, January 21, 1999; Page A23
Most foreign countries trail the United States in addressing potential Year 2000 computer problems, raising concerns that the "Y2K bug" could disrupt maritime shipping, air transportation, oil supplies and other sectors of world trade, a top government intelligence analyst said yesterday.
( I love the use of the word 'could' disrupt.)
Lawrence K. Gershwin of the National Intelligence Council, a group of government and private-sector experts that reports to the CIA director, said Eastern Europe, Russia, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and several Asian nations show little progress in resolving Y2K problems.
(Many show NO progress at all. And of the ones that ARE doing anything, FEW have any chance at all of making it. Even the United states is desparately behind. None of the OPEC nations have ANY chance at all of making it.)
But Gershwin, the council's national intelligence officer for science and technology, declined to spell out what Y2K troubles abroad would mean for the U.S. economy and government.
( Of course he 'declines'. If he did elucidate there would be widspread PANIC by 6 AM tommorrow morning.)
His testimony, though, provided the first public listing of Y2K trouble spots that worry the intelligence community as governments and companies mobilize to fix computer systems so they will continue operating on Jan. 1, 2000. Many computer systems use two-digit date fields and could read "00" as 1900 rather than 2000, possibly causing them to malfunction or shut down.
In particular, Russia and Ukraine seem especially vulnerable to the glitch, Gershwin indicated.
"The coincidence of widespread Y2K-related failures in the winter of 1999-2000 in Russia and Ukraine, with continuing economic problems, food shortages and already difficult conditions for the population, could have major humanitarian consequences for these countries," Gershwin said.
(Not just them. This oversimplifies. The overwhelming majority of ALL countries are way off the mark)
Russia is "likely to experience serious power outages" in the dead of winter and "some nuclear reactors may shut down," Gershwin said. These outmoded reactors already present some safety risks, which could be made worse by Y2K problems, he suggested.
(Germany receives 40% of its electricity form Russia. They are a major energy exporter. Gazprom has yet to even BEGIN an assessment on its systems)
Asked by Rep. Jim Turner (D-Tex.) if the reactors might present a Chernobyl-type threat in 2000, Gershwin said it was "premature to raise that flag."
In keeping with previous Defense Department assessments, Gershwin said Russian strategic missiles would not automatically launch because of a Y2K problem. Pentagon officials, however, fear that Russia may not have time to fix problems in early warning systems that monitor foreign missile launches, and they have been meeting with their Russian counterparts to find a solution.
("May" not have time. this is alaughable joke. They budgeted 500 million and just announced it would take SIX TIMES that amount. They don't even have the 500 million and they have not even begun, notr do they have the time even if they had all the money adn HAD begun.)
Other regions and nations, Gershwin added, face Y2K risks:
* Western Europe. Most of its computer focus has been directed toward the euro monetary conversion, postponing work on Y2K remedies. There appears to be little cross-border cooperation and the Netherlands "has threatened to cut off its power grid from the rest of Europe in order to protect domestic power distribution from external problems," Gershwin said.
* Asia. Many nations have been distracted by the region's economic crisis, and Japanese and Chinese financial institutions will probably face Y2K problems.
(Probably? Don't make me laugh. GUARANTEED is the right word. CSC reported that if onle ONE foreign exchange bank went dow, the cost would be up to ten BILLLLLION dollars the FIRST WEEK ALONE. There will be dozens of foreign exchange banks that do not make it.)
China's late start on computer fixes "suggests Beijing will fail to solve many of its Y2K problems in the limited time remaining, and will probably experience failures in key sectors such as telecommunications, electric power and banking," Gershwin said.
(China only has ten million computers systems but, they have tones of pirated software and therefore no support. They began on electric utilities two months ago))
* Oil producers. Venezuela, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Nigeria, Angola and Gabon lag in Y2K repair efforts. Oil production remains largely in the hands of multinational corporations, but the industry appears exposed to potential Y2K problems because of its reliance on embedded microprocessors in oil drilling, pumping, processing and refining.
( "Appears" exposed? ROTFLMAO. )
"We are concerned about the shipping of oil products, because ocean shipping and foreign ports have both been flagged as among the least prepared sectors," Gershwin said.
(We are dependent upon the flow of oil and the issue of shipping is in the dumper. 11 months. Not a prayer"
He testified at a hearing co-chaired by Reps. Stephen Horn (R-Calif.) and Constance A. Morella (R-Md.). "I am concerned that any potential Y2K economic and social instability across the globe will ripple through to the United States," Morella said.
( He is perenially and perpetually 'concerned'. Nothing more. This way he will always be able to point back over his shoulder at the smoldering ruins and say, "Ya see. I was 'concerned'.)
John A. Koskinen, chairman of the President's Council on Year 2000 Conversion, told Horn and Morella that the U.S. government has started working with a United Nations committee to set up an "international Y2K cooperation center" to deal with cross-border networks such as telecommunications and transportation.
(Too late. shoulda done that three years ago.)
Look, I have said over and over again, that the big issue is the economic context. The rest of the world maintains 75% of all the code. It is not even being partially addressed. The world's economies WILL collapse. No ifs, ands or buts about it. When they go, we go right along with them
But all the government bozos can't make up their minds. Things 'could' happen. They refuse to 'comment' upon the impact.
Paul Milne If you live within five miles of a 7-11, you're toast.
-- Paul Milne (email@example.com), January 21, 1999
You know, when I read that passage I was left with one obvious question. If it's premature to concern ourselves with Chernobyl-type failures in Russia, that's OK. I'm no nuclear engineer. But as a layman, my question to the expert, "When will it be time to worry about nuclear catastrophe in Russia?" February?, August?, December 28? I'd love to write more, but I have some cud to chew. (Sure beats panic!)
-- Puddintame (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 21, 1999.
Its great that you are sharing your posts on this forum, too. Great stuff!
-- King of Spain (email@example.com), January 21, 1999.
So does that mean my beanie babies won't be worth anything any more??
(just kidding, I'm well aware they aren't worth anything now )
-- (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 21, 1999.
It's fun to stay at the Y--M--C--A !!!
-- The Village Person (email@example.com), January 21, 1999.
Glad to see you're in a good mood, Mr. Milne. You must realize that, given the total collapse of our technical infrastructure, we ALL are toast, 7-11 or no. You can postpone things a bit (a year? Five?) and I wish you luck, but you'll die, too, in the end. More people died from disease after World War I than from the war itself--who were you planning on calling when you get otitic meningitis, or septicemic from a previously treatable pneumonia, or develop osteomyelitis from that cut you got on your foot chopping wood? Not to mention viral infections, hypertensive hemorrhage, myocardial ischemia, etc etc. You are undoubtedly correct in your appraisal of the situation, but you may be avoiding the ultimate conclusion: you'll die, too, as will Cory at his Dragon Ranch, as will everyone else. Or can you present FACTS to dispute this? Who will be unconcerned about the loss of this century's technical infrastructure? Why, those poor dirt farmers in the third world, the Masai, the Papua New Guineans, etc. They'll go right on doing what they've always done. The meek will inherit the earth, after all. Go read Shelley's poem Ozymandias: there is nothing new under the sun, and all earthly empires collapse: in our case, sooner rather than later.
-- who doesn't (who firstname.lastname@example.org), January 21, 1999.
In response to 'who Cares'
I always love ignoramuses who reply. The issue is that those who prepare have the BEST chance to survive. NO ONE has a guarantee of survival. But for morons like you to sit there and spout of with the 'we're all gonna die' crap is laughable.
You are the 'real' quitter.
-- Paul Milne (email@example.com), January 21, 1999.
The collapse of late-twentieth-century technology will not automatically doom everyone in those societies dependent upon technology, but it most assuredly will doom who fail to prepare for it. My impression is that you are not preparing, because you feel that it is unthinkable that a technological collapse will occur.
I wish you well.
-- Why2K? (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 21, 1999.
"whocares" Yes we are all going to die sooner or later, being prepared probably means a little later. It's too bad that once again Paul Milne is so ill tempered that he repells people with his ideas. When you see his name at the end of a post you say "good grief, it's Mr Bad Temper again.
-- thinkIcan (thinkIcan@make.it), January 21, 1999.
In response to 'think I can"
It's too bad that you can not be President of my 'fan club' any more.
Want some cheese to go with your 'whine'?
And they are NOT my ideas. They are the facts. And I could care less whether you 'like' them or not. And yes, I am most certainly bad tempered with fools. You will find that when you stop being one, you will not be treated like one.
Chances of that happening? Nil, I'd say. But, there is always hope. Looking forward to your next 'whine'.
-- Paul Milne (email@example.com), January 21, 1999.
Paul--- It's too bad you can not take any constructive advice. You've put you family in serious risk because of your big mouth, but then again I don"t think you know that you even have a problem. The rest of us do.
-- thinkIcan (thinkIcan@make.it), January 21, 1999.
Just a note here...when I first corresponded with Milne, it was to send him a version of my Year 2000 Predicted Crisis Severity table. I had listed Paul at a 7 the bottom of the list (this was based on the old c.s.y2k edwards scale where a 5 was pretty damn bad-now everybody uses a 10 scale). One of the 7-level events was loss of power in the country for more than 10 years. His reply back was stern: "Are you crazy? I don't think it will take 10 years to restore power!". I was surprised. But the next week I discovered Infomagic, and he was able to fill the slot quite well.
The point I want to make is that Milne's view of 2000 is not that extreme. It's just that when we as humans try to conceptualize future pain and suffering, we tend to think in terms of it being either somewhat bad, or absolutely AWFUL! Milne is not saying its TEOTW, only AWKI. Pollyannas need to learn this distinction.
-- a (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 21, 1999.
"And I could care less...."
Mr. Milne, are you sure you don't mean "couldn't?"
-- Gayla Dunbar (email@example.com), January 21, 1999.
Paul as a former trader, what bet would you place to back up this information. Are you shorting the Dow? Long crude oil? Buying Amazon.com?(just kidding) Have you put your money where your mouth is? I agree, that worldwide economic collapse is the best case now. I have a few extra bucks to place a bet, so what do you think?
-- formerlyBill@microsoft.com (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 21, 1999.
Thank you, who doesn't, for jogging my memory. Ozymandias by Percy Bysshe Shelley has always held special meaning for me, so it was easy enough to find it in my file. As it has such poignant relevance in the context of Y2K, I'm surprised that it hasn't been posted here before.
I met a traveller from an antique land, Who said: two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand, Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command, Tell that it's sculptor well those passions read, Which yet survive stamped on these lifeless things, The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed: And on the pedestal these words appear: "My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings: Look on my works, ye Mighty and despair!" Nothing beside remains. Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare The lone and level sands stretch far away.
-- Hallyx (Hallyx@aol.com), January 22, 1999.
A little butter with your toast, Paul? What percent of the U.S. population do you think lives within 5 miles of a 7-11? And how do you define 'toast?' We have a different term where I work: 'roached.' As in stomped. Romanus oris ruit et tamen cervix nostra erecta non flectitur. (The Roman world is collapsing and yet we do not bow our heads) Yes, prepare: of course, prepare. But at least follow the logic of your catastrophe to its end. To do less is meliorism, and our century has had enough of (electronic) meliorism. Best of luck to you.
-- who doesn't (who email@example.com), January 22, 1999.
Why don't you go screw yourself? I'm really sick of you and your pathetic, annoying grammar and spelling corrections. Get a life, you hag!
-- Gagging (sickofGayla@puke.com), January 22, 1999.
Who Cares, throwing a few fancy words in your post won't make you look smarter.
I still don't see what your point was in your first post.
It's a given that we all will die, someday. Milne and those prepared as much as he is have a much greater chance to live longer. If this country collapses and 90% of the population dies, Milne has a chance to be in that 10%. Or even if only 10% dies, he's almost sure to be in that 90% survivers.
"Why, those poor dirt farmers in the third world, the Masai, the Papua New Guineans, etc. They'll go right on doing what they've always done."
And what percentage of the earth population are those? Any civilization not living in the jungle and who's been recieving goods or otherwise been in contact with western people will be just at risk as the rest of us. From desease, plagues. The western world won't be there to save them. No more Medecins du Monde giving of their benevolent time to vacinate, give dantal care and education on hygiene to even people dwelling in jungles.
So it's more like some meeks and some smart preparers will inherit the earth.
-- Chris (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 22, 1999.
I 'have' put my money where my mouth is. In preparations.
As far as 'speculating' in the 'markets', I believe it is immoral. Yes, I used to be a broker. I repented.
Specualtion in the markets is no more than gambling. It is NOT investing at all.
-- Paul Milne (email@example.com), January 22, 1999.