Most look at Y2k with blinders : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

One of the recurring themes in mainstream press reporting of Y2K seems to be a sort of blinders approach. Writers or speakers tend to view and expound on the subject from the selfish perspective; how it affects them and never mind anything else. The banker is concerned about the bank and not the grid; the power company spokesman speaks of the grid but knows nothing about water treatment; the insurance person understands the possible effects on that industry but is oblivious to possible problems with chemical plants. My opinion was buttressed this morning after reading an article in CTI magazine by publisher Rich Tehrani. The magazine reports on the computer telephony and call center industries. His column this month is entitled "Why Everyone (but him) IS Wrong." While his writing is pretty good, his approach is that we will spend our way out of the problem, and while he addresses his industry, he completely ignores possible problems and disruptions elsewhere.

-- Vic (, March 16, 1999


I've noticed this also. People's scenarios of y2k failure tend to assume one things fails, but everything else is humming along normally. As in, "When I get to my office, I find that...." Excuse me, how did you get to your office? Several hundred things have to be working normally for you even to arrive there, BEFORE you turn on your office p.c. Personally, if I find that my p.c. at work is the only thing not functioning properly, I'll be celebrating, even if it means I'm out of a job for a while.

-- not (quite@so.optimistic), March 16, 1999.

The problem is that only a few folks can even think systemically and/or nonlinearly. I've noticed repeatedly that most folks I contact about y2k can only look at their own shop, e.g., the computers at XYZ have been made compliant, so I'm OK. I see this all the time in St. Louis Post-Dispatch articles. One piece in the P-D on Sunday said that all the inventory and checkout systems at a local grocery chain were just fine, so there will be groceries on the shelves. I could not imagine a more simplistic nor idiotic story. I can easily imagine a dozen problems that would make most groceries disappear. The US Senate's own report says that food processing is in bad y2k shape. But the Post Dispatch keeps running happy face stories. I'm very thankful for the internet, and for all the folks who post usable information on all the bulletin boards. Those who rely on the mass media with respect to y2k are SOL IMHO.

-- Les Holladay (, March 16, 1999.

The problem is people dont understand how pervasive technology is. They live in a disney cruise ship world, where the only reminders of technology are the ocean view out the window and occasional sightings of crewmembers in crisp white uniforms. Its totally different on an attack submarine where there's equipment and valves and pipelines and stuff stuck all over. Its much scarier, and it aint no disneyland.

Your grandparents knew where the milk came from and how it got to the table. Now you practically need a degree in business and agriculture to find that one out.

-- Got Commodities Futures? (, March 16, 1999.

Hi All,

Rich Tehrani here. Sorry I started all this controversy. I went out on a limb, made a prediction and was 100% right. Not to brag but it takes guts to against the grain on such a potentially catastrophic issue.

Here is the article for your review.

What I see as most interesting about my writing is that I predicted what most every financial analyst said would not happen, a financial boom. While analysts (I am not sure what logic they used) argued that spending would slow and there would be an impending economic doomsday, I again predicted the opposite would happen. I walked the reader through the logic and was correct.

I am not always correct btw but when I go against virtually every expert on the planet and am right, I feel like I should take some credit.

-- Rich Tehrani (, December 29, 2004.


In your new message you said:

...I predicted what most every financial analyst said would not happen, a financial boom.

Were you predicting that for 1999 or for 2000? What you did say in your article was:

Great PCs are now available for less than $1,000, and we will be seeing a flood of computer purchases as a result of Y2K preparation. Expect computer and related stocks to soar as PCs are replaced around the world.

I agree the economy did quite well in 1999. A lot of computer systems were replaced then because of a one-time need on the part of businesses to both fix Y2K and to update systems for the internet "new economy" that everyone was talking about at the time. That was a big boost to the economy in 1999, and so was the extra liquidity the Fed provided in late 1999. I remember the Nasdaq rising from about 2500 in October 1999 to about 5000 in March of 2000.

The Dow reached its all-time high of 11,723 in January of 2000 and has still not recovered to that level yet as of this time. People thought IT spending would continue strong in 2000 as it did in 1999, but that was not to be. The bubble did burst, and it burst soon after the start of the millenium--not because of Y2K problems but because the pace of spending in 1999 was unsustainable.

-- My (two@cents.worth), December 30, 2004.

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