Chomsky, Aliens, Conspiracies, Y2K, and Moregreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
I posted this as a reponse to a previous thread, breathed, and thought I should post it as its own thread. I'd appreciate thoughts and ideas about how to increase the value of this forum for those who want to prepare for possible Y2K disruptions-- whenever they begin to happen. Some humorous responses would also help. Humor does seem to help some of us remember our humanity. I've really enjoyed the humor posts here and hope to see many more as we countdown to January 1, 2000.
Chomsky and Modern Liberal Thought
I found the paste of Noam Chomsky's talk at Z Media Institute by R. Wright to be interesting. Certainly, there are apparent coincidences and realities that may be described by Chomsky, but is the big picture according to Chomsky right on? Or is it just an interesting argument that makes sense, but really doesn't reflect the multidimensional reality in truth? Chomsky's basic thesis seems to come right out of a text book from modern liberal thought, a neo-marxist school that put out some exciting things in the beginning of this century. My own opinion of modern liberal thought is that they identified some serious problems, but their solutions were inadequate. Namely, because they failed to fully and truly understand human nature and human destiny.
New World Order and grey aliens with big bug eyes
Whatever your beliefs about the New World Order or a conspiracy led by grey aliens with big bug eyes, I imagine that even if such things were true, there is really nothing you can do about them. Unless you have been abducted, these things probably don't have real impact on your daily life- if the buggy eyed aliens are in control of the big show. But it is entirely possible that these very unusual symbols represent to you the complexity of realities that you just aren't tuned into-- realities in which there is no New World Order or buggy eyed aliens.
While I may be a buggy eyed alien and you may be convinced of this, I really do think I'm a reasonable human being that is not convinced that buggy eyed aliens exist, visit this planet, or are in control. Nor had I ever heard about the New World Order until reading posts on this forum. But I do worry that new GIs looking for good information about how to prepare for 3 days or 10 years are going to question their initial worries about Y2K if they see too many of such posts.
The problem with conspiracy theories
Instead of looking for highly sophisticated arguments about power, politics, and propoganda to explain the general lack of attention to the possible disasters caused by potential Year 2000 technology problems... perhaps, simple insights into the reality of the situation may be more accurate. First, no one knows precisely what will happen. We have no real experience with the multi-dimensional challenges of wide-spread failures through out an interconnected system of machines that construct our present social reality. I also assume that like each of us... even John Koskinen (who is also a human being) would like to know what's going to happen with clarity and certainty. Until that happens, we can't fully respond to whatever reality we find ourselves in. Some may believe that God knows what will happen (I do), but like everyone else... most "believers" will have to wait and see... myself included--unless you are talking one on one with God.
The media, government, and public companies may or may not want to talk about the nasty side of things if things don't get fixed. But I don't assume that they are conspiring against the American people. I imagine that those who have a clue are trying to understand what's going to happen and trying also to understand what they need to communicate about the situation and the situation that may or may not happen. I think they also believe that they feel a responsibility and are highly sensitive to the consequences of what they do and do not communicate. I'm sure that just as some of us lose sleep at night, worrying about what's going to happen, they are also losing sleep.
Making mistakes and correcting them
Right now, we each (individually) have to JUMP to our own conclusions (possibly erroneous conclusions) about what to do right now. I believe there is sufficient information here and elsewhere on the Internet to make a "less lonely" jump to the conclusion that there is a need to prepare for a local emergency in your area. And there are significant resources of information about how to prepare-- whether you decide to prepare for three days or 10 years. Perhaps, we can even improve upon those resources and their intelligibility with our combined and high intelligence. This seems more worthwhile than devoting our attention to every possible conspiracy. Prudence would dictate such good action.
Those who have prepared for what they think is the worst or those now well along the way may find such good works to be less interesting than exploring dark imaginations. But if it is less interesting and less novel, helping to improve preparedness information, making it more acessible, getting the word out, encouraging people despite the challenges... will prove to be rewarding, more satsfying in the end. As I've mentioned before, some of you may be saving the lives of real people: men, women, and children. Wow! Really, it's not a small thing.
What to do now and what to do different
I realize that some of you have talked about what to do, tried to figure out how to deal with new GIs, and spent some time on this, and your efforts are to be greatly appreciated. Some have already expressed their appreciation and gratitude. I thank you for what you have done. But there is more work to be done. There is need for greater concentration... more focus... and this work needs to stay alive. In addition to the possibility of a search engine (what was decided if anything was decided?), new threads with relevant and interesting titles need to pop up at least as often as the conspiracy threads.
You have to take more than ownership of this forum, you really need to reflect on the interesting and, perhaps, sudden realization that you have a unique opportunity to do that which you believe Koskinen has failed. If the media isn't doing the job you think it should be doing, you can make a difference. There are things that can be done beyond this forum. The question is... how serious are you... how committed are you to getting the word out? Do you have the time, money, and energy to do things outside this forum? Yes, I believe you can make a difference!
Sincerely, Stan Faryna
-- Stan Faryna (email@example.com), April 16, 1999
Sensible post, Stan--thanks.
-- Old Git (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 16, 1999.
Stan -- Yes. But keep in mind that if one believes that DeeCee is acting according to a plan (cf Andy, Leska, others), not just haphazardly, in which Y2K is one element but Kosovo a related element, then these threads are not OT at all. At a minimum, international events (cf Kosovo and others) are increasingly certain to have an impact on Y2K, especially banking and markets, panic, etc., as the year moves on. And the year is moving on rather quickly, it's almost May.
Also, there is a limit as to how many times people can regurgitate the same Y2K topics, even prep. Folks can pretty easily find dozens or hundreds of threads important to them by checking the archives. That the regulars enjoy "talking" to each other but don't want to rehash the same "old" Y2K news is understandable.
As for aliens and black helicopters, those are red herrings.
Stan, your points are well-taken and always timely on a forum like this. But mine may perhaps be as well.
-- BigDog (BigDog@duffer.com), April 16, 1999.
a good start would be to check out the U.S. army slide show about the power grid. the link is on gary north's site today.
-- jocelyne slough (email@example.com), April 16, 1999.
Aladdin Oil Lamp and Pacific Southwest Bank
Want to know what made my day, yesterday?
I got my Aladdin lamp from Lehman's (http://www.lehmans.com)! Putting it together was like having a rock lifted off my chest. I ordered this lamp on February 2, 1999, received an apologetic letter from Lehman's two weeks ago informing me not to expect it for another 4 to 6 weeks, and followed up on their letter with a phone call. At the time, the sales person wasn't sure if I'd ever get it. Getting my lamp made me feel a lot better about the current situation for people who want to get ready-- myself included. The funny thing is that I forgot to order lamp oil!
Of course, this is not a first thing. But I ordered this lamp before I came to understand the priorities of sheltering, drinking, and eating. Still waiting for a couple other things that I ordered way back in February. As for Aladdin lamps, Lehman's expects the next shipment to come in June. The price for the basic brass lamp has gone up $US 30, however. I'm not sure if the manufacturer has raised prices due to the expansion of production or if Lehman's has raised prices to pay for the expansion in operations. Maybe, it is both. Got insight into this?
My fax machine just rang and the same flier from Pacific Southwest Bank mentioned by Y2Knewswire is printing out. It just took a phone call to corporate headquarters. The PR person in charge isn't in today, but the person answering the phone was very helpful. My point is that we should be verifying these things and, perhaps, posting the results on the forum-- good and bad. The brochure is copyrighted by Bankers Systems, Inc. in St. CLoud, MN, so I will not be posting it.
Impact of Kosovo and Big Dog's Thoughts
I agree with you, Big Dog... that how the Beltway Insiders are dealing with Kosovo or other things may reflect concerns about Y2K . I haven't heard anything from the grapevine, myself. I think I would have heard something about "a plan." Maybe, I'm out of the loop, these days. I would not like to think I'm that far out of the loop. I like to think of myself as an insider with one foot in and one foot out. Anyway, if I heard of anything, you all would be the first to know by private email -- at least until the men in black come and stop me.
While there is a lot of great prep information in this forum, much of this information could be condensed or linked together to make more sense or to be more easily found. It could be better organized and gaps could be filled. I know this is a lot of work, but it would be worthwhile. I think there is a lot of people who just don't have the time to lay out all the hours that I or others had and make sense and use of it as quickly as possible. You said it... "And the year is moving on rather quickly, it's almost May." We're almost out of time.
I agree that there will be a limit on how much prep information can be processed before it becomes worthlessly redundant, but I don't think we have come close to this kind of data redundancy. Sure, I don't see anything wrong with chatting in the threads with our new found and long held friends. It makes this a more friendly place, certainly. I think we agree, Big Dog.
Military and Jocelyne's Response
I've talked to people in the Military and other agencies. I'm sure most of us know someone (maybe even a relative) who's been in the services or currently serves. The apparent DGI, Mr. Decker, has said some things that I am hearing from those I know in the Military. I don't hear anything about civilian unrest preparations, I do hear that in the event of an emergency, the National Guard and Reserves will try their best to help the civilian pop. with heat, water, and food. Will they be coming after you and me? I think it really has to be so bad at that point that we would not generally stand a chance in such a case. I am told by several that it would require a minimum of 20 well armed families being coordinated by intelligent military-trained leaders to hold out for a little while against whoever may want what you have.
If you truly believe that Y2K could become TEOTWAWKI, your best chance of survival is to make things happen now so that it isn't going to be TEOTWAWKI. Beside preparing for disruptions at a 3-5 on a scale of 1-10, there is a lot you can be doing to get everyone you know and may meet to hound the companies, local and national government, and the mediating structures (church, community, neighborhood) to make effective contingency plans and fix the bugs before the New Year. At least, this is what Military people and others recommend to me.
How many letters to public officials and corporate pr people have you written? How many people have you talked to? How many public officials and pr people have you called? How many letters to the editor have you written? Have you really contributed insight, time, and energy to these things? Did you do it in a reasonable manner? I'm asking myself these same questions. And you know what? I fail. I'm changing that all right now. I can do good. You can do good. Together, we can do great good.
Sincerely, Stan Faryna
-- Stan Faryna (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 16, 1999.
A very straightforward, sensible and appropriate post, Stan.
I've come to understand that something more than logical analysis is involved. An individual has to have a certain readiness to concede the possibility of radical disruptions in lifestyle, of uncertain depth and duration. No survey, no letter, no essay, no Congressional report can enter the world of anyone lacking that readiness.
There is a story, supposedly accurate, from the time when the Third Reich was conducting its Final Solution. A highly placed European Jew, through a network of informants throughout Europe, had become aware of what was happening, in some detail. Before foreign travel for Jews was prohibited, he traveled to the United States to visit an old friend of his, Felix Frankfurter, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and pass on what he had learned.
It was a long story. At the end of it, Justice Frankfurter said, "I don't believe it." His visitor was astounded. "Do you think I'm lying to you about this? My information is certain." "No, no, not at all!" Frankfurter said. "I know you're telling me the truth. I just don't believe it."
-- Tom Carey (email@example.com), April 16, 1999.
Some of us trust the government; some don't. Some of us are content to "sensibly" keep our little noses out of "the government's business" (and firmly in the ass of the sheep in front of us); some aren't. Why you start looking, you find things out. It's more difficult to do your own research than it is to suck on the teat of the Media Cartel, but anyone can do it. Part of being a responsible citizen in a democracy is finding out what's really going on. Part of what's really going on is that we are being lied to, fairly consistently, by Government, Media and Corporate America. We are being lied to about Y2k; and part of understanding how and why we are being lied to about Y2k is understanding how and why we have been lied to (or "shielded from the truth") in the past. To suggest that those who are willing to focus on these lies and their telling are distracting us from responsible preparation is an insult to our intelligence and subversive of American Democracy. Democracy requires an informed citizenry, and a free press, both of which are being eroded by financial control (mega media mergers); and abetted by the "be a good, ignorant citizen" values you espouse.
Your characterization of Chomsky as a "marxist" is laughable. Chomsky is called a "facist" by left wingers and a "marxist" by right wingers. One of the most interesting things about him is that he doesn't buy into these ideologies, but thinks for himself. This makes him a good source of inspiration for anyone who is trying to learn to think for themselves. I suggest that interested parties start by renting the video documentary, "Manufacturing Consent," which is really entertaining and available at most large video outlets. Then read "Necessary Illusions." People hate and deride Chomsky because he tells the truth about how the government and media collude to manipulate mass consciousness - powerful stuff! He is empowering to any citizen, regardless of their political leanings. A good double feature choice might be the academy-award winning documentary "Panama Deception," which juxtaposes footage of American Media coverage of the invasion with footage and interviews taken on the ground. It will help you understand media, which will help you understand how our opinions are being manipulated about Y2k; but it will also help you understand how bombing the hell out of other countries makes economic sense for American financial interests (though it has won an academy award, PBS refused, and still refuses to air it). A timely film.
On the topic of "silly little bug-eyed aliens," read Timothy Good's "Above Top Secret," also Jaques Vallee's "Dimensions" and "Passport to Magonia," and perhaps Thompson's "Alien Identities." Vallee describes how the unseemly "UFO Cult" phenomenon appears to be a kind of experiment in social engineering; he draws some clear links between these cults and military intelligence people. Which is not to say that a huge number of sightings are not true anomalies. It's not a question of "believing" anything; it's a question of informing oneself. To deride others for their interest in this is to arbitrarily impose limits on what qualifies as Y2k "context." Likewise the expressed belief in God, and His landings and flyovers. It's a matter of personal (often remarkably informed) opinion, and derision, or the suggestion of censorship, should be recognized as a gross incivility.
I recognize the truly good intention in this thread, which is to take care of as many desperate Y2k newbies as possible. But let's not blind ourselves with our own compassion: all the information they need about necessities, tricks and tips, etc., is available at any search engine. If they have questions, they can post them, and they will be answered. When you express a desire to cease all discussion of topics that you fear may be uncomfortable or off-putting to newbies, you are saying, in effect, "Turn off you mind and act as normal as possible." You are saying that we should speak only of practical matters, and stifle our philisophical, religious, and political speech. You are saying "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain." Well, I've had a look at the man behind the curtain, and he's terrified about Y2k. We need to know all about him, because his reactions to Y2k crises will impinge directly on our own.
-- Dano (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 16, 1999.
Dano, do you honestly believe there is ANYone on this forum who believes Clinton is an honest, moral, competent, trustworthy, kind and gentle president? That the war in Kosovo is a good thing?
-- Old Git (email@example.com), April 16, 1999.
That is a ninty-degree tangent to the response I just posted. So I don't know what you're getting at.
I wasn't making fun of your potato post, btw. - I already know where I'm going to plant mine. I just can't sanction the exclusion of other's opinions -or any matter of opinion- on the grounds of expediency.
-- Dano (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 16, 1999.
Dano - you bear a strong resemblance to a much-respected, long-lost bacterium on this forum. I'm glad you're here; the long-lost one's psychological footprint can nearly be replaced (sentimentally) by yours. Welcome, Sir.
-- Lisa (email@example.com), April 16, 1999.
Not really, Dano. I was trying to keep it as short as possible. You wrote: "Some of us trust the government; some don't. . ."; "Part of what's really going on is that we are being lied to, fairly consistently, by Government. . . We are being lied to about Y2k"; you talk about philosophy, religion and politics and say you want people to know the truth behind all this stuff.
And my post said, "Dano, do you honestly believe there is ANYone on this forum who believes Clinton [i.e., government]is an honest, moral, competent, trustworthy, kind and gentle president? That the war in Kosovo is a good thing?" In other words, aren't you and others preaching to the choir here? Over and over and over. . .?
You conclude with: "I wasn't making fun of your potato post, btw." Sorry--now I don't know what YOU'RE talking about!
-- Old Git (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 16, 1999.
I was referencing my post, three threads down, "delusional paranoids render this forum useless" (!?) where I said essentially "if you want pure practicality, go to Old Git's potato post!" Basically the same discussion on a different thread.
I feel like it's necessary to "preach to the choir," when someone like Stan Faryna bursts in through the chapel doors and starts yelling: "STOP SINGING! YOU'LL SCARE AWAY ALL THE CONVERTS!" This is a theme developing, sort of like the old "the code's not the problem, panic is." This new theme is "we musn't talk about politics or ideas: stay on topic - speak only of babywipes and canned peaches; otherwise people who are about to prepare will turn away in disgust." When these censors ease off the pressure, I'll ignore them.
I've been reading that guy's posts. I think we have read a lot of the same books. Big shoes to fill - but we are definitely coming from the same space, RE sheeple, Chomsky, even aliens! I think the aliens have always been here, though...
-- Dano (email@example.com), April 16, 1999.
Sometimes timing seems suspicious, as if, one asks a question of oneself, puts it off to think about it, and suddenly evidence is everywhere related to it.
My husband and I both do web hosting and design for a living. I contract FT to a military-industrial conglomerate, and he now runs with only some of my help, a business he and I started years ago.
The last topic I was truly interested in, I ended up making email lists, BBS's, web sites about. Now they're common but then it was more than what was available to most, for awhile. I'm a practical sort so that was my approach.
When Y2K came along, I intended to make a site that would feature Y2K stuff. What I found is that I was spending so much time reading BYLLIUNS AND BYLLIUNS (as the late Carl Sagan would have said) of bytes of info, that I didn't have time to make the darn site.
Then I decided that actually, so many sites already have such massive info on them, there was no point in duplicating them.
Now reference sites for links are nice, but even then, that only points people to how to spend every waking hour for the next three years trying to figure this -- whoops, they're out of time.
So the last week, having spent more time in one block reading/posting in this forum than usual, I've been thinking about what I could do that would be useful to people here, people planning for Y2K.
The first thing is, the only things I'm *really* interested in are (a) preparation tidbits of all kinds, conversation is the value of this forum but I don't want to archive that at my site, and (b) humor, because the world -- let alone this topic -- needs as much of it as it can get.
Now people have asked Ed Yourdon about copying these threads to other public places. This is a public forum, the writing is public domain. So that shouldn't be an issue.
I am wondering if it would be considered (by the local yokels here in Yourdonland) useful if I did the following:
1 - Browsed the archives, cut & pasting very hands-on to-the-point prep info into files that I'll separate by category on a site. I would be, essentially, a SEARCHABLE and MINIMIZED hands-on PREPARATION archive of Yourdon's board. (Of course it is subject to my arbitrary assessment, editing, and condensing, and I would be ruthless about literally only including specific words on prep, experience with the subject, etc.)
2 - I'd like to take the books I have bought in prep for Y2K, and do the sort of 'review' on them that actually lists and condenses some of the most important, most relevent info. Not everybody can afford spending hundreds on books they don't have time to read, in addition to what they're spending trying to buy food et al, and this will only be exacerbated by panic and short timelines as we get nearer Y2K.
IF public awareness of this leaps before the end of the year, a lot of people with almost no money, no time, and little resources left are going to be panicking a helluva lot more than I did when I first figured this out mid-last year. Understandably. Imagine how YOU would feel if the kicked-in-the-gut realization hit you just as it also hit 150 million other people, many useful supplies were already gone, you had almost no money and little time to make any, and you didn't even know where to start.
We have "been there, done that." We could essentially take the majority of the "learning curve" out for many people by condensing the relevent points and conclusions we have come to re: personal prep.
Yes, there are sites which feature this, but again, there is SO MUCH INFORMATION, how does a person know where to start? And so much of it is links. "Gardening -- here's 1.2 bazillion links to sites which each will take you a week to read." How on earth does a person who's trying to GI FAST go through all that?
I think I (we?) could actually synthesize a good deal of info in this one niche category (personal prep) in a way that would be helpful to people. But it would be a lot of work/time on my part and I am already a two job toddler mommy working OT to learn ham/morse stuff and Y2K stuff and build a 2000sq' garden and so on. So I don't want to do it unless it really would be a value in addition to what exists.
People on this board, you tell me, what do you think would be most useful? If you owned a bunch of web space and could make something that would let you provide the "if I'd known then what I know now" to others coming into the field, what would you do, and how would you want to do it?
I open my plans to advice from those here. Is it worth it? Would anybody want to help? I have all kinds of software available to me, unlimited www space and traffic, etc. so I can do some things dynamically if necessary (but it slows down the server massively, so I'd rather stick to a simple text-based html site).
PJ in TX
P.S. No smart remarks from the peanut gallery about how the person who can write a book about anything wants to "condense" information. :-)
-- PJ Gaenir (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 16, 1999.
If you & E. ever met, you'd need your own server for discussion.
Well, if Harliner ever shows back up, make sure to introduce yourself to him. Again, welcome....................
-- Lisa (email@example.com), April 16, 1999.