Know Your Optimist : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Here's how the mind works of those trying to talk us out of personal contingency planning. Know Your Optimist.

Optimists can be just as paranoid as pessimists.

Format & Guiding "spirit".


Re: Ouch! (CJS)

Date: Mar 16, 11:48


The note on "chatting" is correct. Most of EY and Sissy2k is gossip and BAR ROOM /Coffee shoppe BS from people who couldn't read a Y2k report about remediation if their lives depended on it. The NERC flames on the Gloom sites is total proof of that.

MOST of the qualified techies, have left both boards (others have left GN's lists also). I correspond with a few of them and keep them updated. HOW?? I try to "recruit" a few good people who seem to be borderline. Some end up on BFI as regulars. Now I'm more interested in counteracting the hysterics in what I call "my community": the Right. Steve Hewitt is doing a great job at Christian Computing but we need some strident voices like the business leadership putting an end to this. (Hopefully, through internal corporate communications and company newsletters that they themselves are going to be OK. Then the "employees" will spread the word into the Community and the Y2k FEAR / Hysterics will END.)

The "Defectors" from the "meme" are the most POWERFUL voices we could have. Having seen the effect the "propaganda" creates, they can show others but they won't go back whence they came from.

I've been on forums dating back to the early 1980s. I once went for $500 in line charges in one month on the IBMPC forum on Compuserve (never did that again).

We had the rules straight: no vendors unless they contributed information and no IDIOTS. NONE or you would be ID'd as an idiot whereever you posted on Compuserve.

That can't be done now on the web. Democracy in action. AOL ruined the whole thing.

The "shut down" on any stories that do not reflect the ruling tribes on EY's forum (or North's for that matter), is complete. It is in fact, a "seizure" akin to the kind of thing that is seen when someone wants to "take over" a PTA or a School Board. The people know what they are doing.

Anything "conforming" to the rules is allowed. Whence the tolerance of Cody Varian (eComm site) and CBN's "Y2k Web Master" and other similar efforts to "get their names around".

NO legitimate vendor posts to EY's site anymore. Few and very few to Sissy2k. The latter has less than 1% postings on "software". BOTH are now merely the non-religious equivalents of North's links and forums. Its the same stories with the same 'mindset'. "THEY" can't be trusted. "THEY" are "covering up", "Lying" or "spinning" (FUNNY because Gary even admits to doing it deliberately.)

When the action "dies" on Sissy2k, it is resurrected by insane flame wars on any "moderates". BUT, still Paul, Brad, Don S. and others persist because offline they get the email confirming what they know: the lurkers are on their side but don't want to take the abuse.

Lists and forums live and die based on the Owner / Moderator. Now they even post "the stats" of traffic measured in "posts". This is to "help" people think they are "truly on the inside".

ITS ALL P.R. and very skillful. C.s.y2k is driven the same way by a few core leaders (mostly vendors of something).

All of this reflects the will of the list/forum owner. Time after time, Yourdon surfaces to point people in the right direction if one of his followers does not do it first. Usually his direct intervention is not necessary. However, he or one of his PR people could be doing it under assorted "screen names".

He has a lot at stake and he can afford to do it. At 200K copies of his paperback, he has already scored. From now on, the book and ancillary (sic?) "tape" sales down the MLM channels are all "found money". His pleadings that he should be allowed to do this ............because he has "college aged children" is incredible after one finds out what he sold his "information business" for or what he gets from Yourdon books or his "Cutter" fees for brokering deals.

We forget as "WE" TUNE HIM OUT that most visitors are there from his book for "the latest news". This in turn, generates even more interest in book sales as the Memes must "buy one for Mommie or their best friend". That UNISYS gave it away indicates a nice "tonnage" sale.

A similar effort is underway in the Leftist medium everywhere now over Y2k and they are using the issue to resurrect all their "issues" and to "recruit". That is what UTNE's "guide" is for. It has little to do with Y2k (though EY's efforts do).

EY's forum has been manipulated to allow all sorts of uninformed people to reach some sort of status there.

The reason I am convinced that Yourdon let that happen was that from the beginning, he made no effort whatever to correct any obvious errors.

As the 2nd Ed. of Ed came closer to publication, the activity level began to rise. Sometime in November, I became convinced that there were "ringers" placing stories and correcting minor details in a nit picking way. There is one person in particular, who arrives with just the right link or many to argue against whatever good news is posted. He can't "analyze" the post so he puts the links in. Its like watching an Idiot Savant.

One by one, all the technically able people left and were replaced by what is now there: "A BUNCH OF CONVERTS" protecting the "One True Faith": their Y2k beliefs.

Like anyone, they do not want to "change their minds" after having taken strong positions.

Those that do mostly just leave. Periodically, one will leave with a parting "its been great but I have many things to do".

Only once have I seen a statement that he had changed his mind and was moving to the optimistic side. He was dismissed as not being a "True Believer".

-- (null@null.null), March 16, 1999


I was curious to understand why anyone would spend so much time and energy creating such a message, but when I hyperlinked to the URL that null@null.null gave us, I saw that the original posting was made by Charlie Reuben. I suppose it's comforting to know that he's consistent, and he occasionally comes up with some fascinating tidbits -- e.g., Unisys is giving away my "Time Bomb 2000" book? If so, it's news to me -- though Mr. Reuben and I would probably disagree about whether it's good news or bad news.

I don't have the time or energy to respond to the various points in Reuben's postings; I tried several times to do so in the fall of 1997 on the csy2k forum and finally concluded that there was no meaningful dialogue taking place at all...

One small point made by another poster on this thread needs to be corrected: in addition to deleting messages and threads that are clearly obscene, I've also deleted unanswered questions more than a month old. This was at the request of Phil Greenspun, who is understandably concerned that this forum not swamp all of server's resources. My assumption is that a question/posting that has not provoked any responses or answers for a full month is a good candidate for being erased, in order to conserve resources.


-- Ed Yourdon (, March 16, 1999.

"Steve Hewitt is doing a great job at Christian Computing . . ."


-- Puddintame (, March 16, 1999.

DOeS NoT HE MAkE SOme vaLid pOInTS????? yES!!!!! DOes NoT The MAny hOles shOW ToO???? YEs!!!!! DIeTer thINks nOt thAT Ed YouRdoN WOuLd riSK A REpuTAtion fOr thE FAst buCk!!!! BuT On HAnd TWO, Do SOme HERe WORShIp at tHe aLter of DOoM????? HuH???? YES!!!!!!

-- Dieter (, March 16, 1999.

Succinct and accurate, Dieter. Thanks.

-- Flint (, March 16, 1999.

Bottom line re:Y2K-

The "Get-Its" can afford to be wrong.

The "Don't-Get-Its" cannot.

'Nuff said!

-- Jeremiah Jetson (laterthan@uthink.y2k), March 16, 1999.

Null--(a very apt description)

Chastising Ed Yourdon for making a dollar. Very poor taste. Would you do it to make a dollar? You would do it so fast the bills would smoke. I think I detect a slight twinge of the old green envy here. What do you think all the other prognosticators are in this for??? Their sense of self-worth?? or their innate desire to see all of the nation's information-downtrodden be enlightened?? Get real! I'm sure that the NERC spokesman, the Postmaster-General,et al. have my best interests at heart.

The one thing that completely sets this site apart from the others is the diversity of opinions, the intelligence of most of the posters and the hard and fast rule "If you can't prove it, you'd better not post it". (If you do and can't prove it, you'd better have on flame retardent underwear).

One post above I definitely can agree with. If I'm wrong, I can live with it. If they're wrong, they can't.

Insofar as the nonconforming posts being eliminated from the board. It doesn't happen. Go to the archives and scan them. There are a lot of silly, irrelevant, thoughtful, scathing, hardcore, pollyanna posts stored there that reflect every side of this debate. The posts that ARE gone are ones that reflect profanity or extreme bad taste. And for THAT censorship, I give Mr. Yourdon my deepest thanks.

Null--If you want other views, just go to a different forum and see how long your views last there. (By the way, just what are your views? I only read an attack on this forum. No thoughts of your own in there.)

A Realist

-- Lobo (, March 16, 1999.

Hey Ed, a month? Around here, most threads are dead meat after a day or two! Who has time to go back? :-)

-- David (, March 16, 1999.

David, you've got to re-read his words -"un-answered' questions, those that have sat in the "new questions" group for a month and have no comments added, are deleted.

The rest stay on the general listing for 1 week (maybe less in the next few months) , then go to the archives if no one adds a new response after 7 days.

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (, March 16, 1999.

Y2K PC Solution Links:

Gary and Y2K:

-- (, March 17, 1999.

Got a big chuckle out of Chuck "The Fuhrer" Rubin's post on GNIBFI (reposted here by null). Might have been posted, to good effect, on the "True Believers" thread. I guess that's the only way we'll be favored with Mr R's graceless prose. He was responding to this post by Cherri Stewart.

[Cherri said] "My brain hurts. I just spent over 2 hours at the Yourdon doom forum for the first, and probably last time. They ask for good news stories, and if you present one, it's like throwing raw meat into a school of sharks. If you have several posts that they can't argue, they just gloss over those. Once they find a hole in the story- They pounce.

If I've got the score right, every positive story is a lie, and conspiracies are everywhere. Of course, not one person can back up an item there, so you end up arguing about conjecture and speculation. I guess I don't get it. But, I don't get what it is that they've got, even though I had it once, but don't anymore.

Get it?

Brain hurt. Must rest brain."

I guesss the irrascible Ms S didn't appreciate our warm and heartfelt welcome. Or maybe she just didn't like my hot massage oil.



"[sigh] So many idiots, so few comets."---Harlanquin

-- Hallyx (, March 17, 1999.

I did not write that. I keep my opinions about the psychological needs that are met by the people here to myself. I believe that expressing pity for people is counterproductive and it is obvious that many ego's here are fragile already. As so many of the posts and reactions to posts are comonally typical in different stages children go through, this arena surves the purpose of providing for those and other needs.

-- Cherri (, March 17, 1999.

Just to set the record straight here, folks.

No, not everyone is in Y2k to make a buck. You have the perfect example here in Charles Reuben. As far as I know, he has been involved in Y2k efforts longer than both North and Yourdon, and has refused to take any money for his efforts, precisely because he felt it would taint the message.

He is not out hawking books, videos, over-priced "preparedness" food, or MLM's.

-- Hoffmeister (, March 17, 1999.

Charles Babbage Hall of Shame

-- Greg Smith (, March 17, 1999.

Hi Dieter:

"Yourdon risk his reputation for a fast buck"??? Don't make me laugh. What reputation would that be? "Yourdonefor's" rep among IT professionals hit rock bottom last year, and since then he's started to dig.

His position opined in the "Decline and Fall of the American Programmer" was not just a little off. It was so stupefyingly wrong that the book has become a classic of sorts. It is hard to imagine anything more out of step than Yourdon's pessimism in what has proved to be the software developer's golden age.

It's right up there with other "masterpieces of expertise", such as the banker who said about the Ford Motor Company, "The horse is here to stay, but the automobile is only a novelty - a fad", or the founder of Digital Equipment who said in 1977, "There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in their home".

The irony is that although the marketplace can be merciless to such hubris (Digital was taken over by PC manufacturer Compaq), Yourdon simply switched his audience to the computer illiterate public for his next gloomy scenario. That his book has sold as well as it has, and given the slavering praise ubiquitous on this board, or as you so eloquently put it, "doom worship", we have golden proof of the famous adage attributed to P.T. Barnum.

-- Computer Pro (, March 17, 1999.

The Biffy crowd are true believers in their cause: the Right. Ouch! Thanks for heads-up Hallyx.

-- Does it matter (a@concerned.citizen), March 17, 1999.

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