Is this a part of a blueprint for resilient communities??(fallback planning cat.) : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

This is a partial repost of a post from the CIVICPREP listserve by Robert Waldrop:

Since the first week of May, I've been working on tornado relief here in Oklahoma City with Catholic Charities. Because of the scale of the disaster here (45 tornadoes in about 3 hours, over 8,000 houses destroyed or severely damaged, 44 deaths, etc.), the non-profit sector has been meeting regularly with our government counterparts (FEMA, state emergency preparedness, etc.) as "Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters". I believe there is a national counterpart. Our purpose is to coordinate our actions so that we don't needlessly duplicate efforts. (E.g., the Adventists are running our relief warehouse, the Methodists are coordinating the volunteers, Catholic Charities is doing case work, Salvation Army is running mobile kitchens, etc.)

At a typical meeting, you find the Salvation Army, Adventist Disaster Corps, Red Cross, Catholic Charities, Mennonite Builders, Church of the Brethren Disaster Day Care, United Methodist Committee on Relief, Lutheran Social Services, Habitat for Humanity, Americorps, Goodwill Industries, plus some foundation reps, FEMA, state emergency preparedness (we meet in their hq, located in a tunnel between two state office buildings, complete with blast doors, built back during the 1960s, they tell me the blast doors actually work). Anyway, everybody is pretty focused on the disaster at hand, but everybody knows about Y2K. I get the impression, however, that nobody is quite sure exactly what to do about it.[Italics mine, cr]

Catholic Charities is addressing this in a comprehensive disaster plan we are preparing (we've had two big ones in four years, first the federal building bombing, and now these tornadoes). Here again, however, I can see some struggle with the concepts of "if this is 'really real', then what's to be done?" I'm glad to have the URL for the Y2K/Don't Panic teaching materials.

Those in the Y2K preparedness community should remember that everything doesn't have to be done by us. In fact, I strongly suspect that even if the president came out tomorrow and said, "prepare now" most people wouldn't pay much attention. Y2K is already a question of politics, and that isn't helping the situation at all. Most people who live in earthquake and hurricane zones don't make advance preparations, and many people in Oklahoma City did not have access to a good tornado shelter (that's why so many people died, there was plenty of warning).

So in considering what's to be done, we should include contingency plans for informing the rest of civil society about what should be done when disruptions happen. e.g., unless I find something better, I'm working on a series of handouts that will be copied in advance and stored in Catholic churches (or anywhere else conveniently located to neighborhoods), to be distributed as failures occur, e.g., a page on water, another on emergency heating, another on the location of soup kitchens, a third on emergency sanitation and garbage. Then there would be a handout for civil society organizations, another for churches, and still another for neighborhood organizations. "Here's what you can do about the Y2K problems we are experiencing now."

For generators, I've downloaded pages from the internet on how to make your own generator from a lawnmower engine and an automobile alternator. I'm not at all technically inclined myself, but I've shown these plans to several mechanics and tinkerers and they all agree it could be done, ("of course, why didn't I think about that.") Copies go in the box for the parishes.

I guess the point of this long and rambling post is that my assumption is that most people won't make any preparations before Y2K.

So, it's kind of like plotting a "revolution." (Monocle ON:) Virst, ve infiltrate all zee neighborhoods, Zecond, ve make zee propaganda. Zen, ven ze time iss ripe, there ve are, with ze instructions. (Monocle OFF).

Call this the "vanguard theory" as it relates to "creating a resilient community very fast." I agree with the idea of making simple preparation material widely available, but while it may have some preparedness effects, I'd still say the safest assumption is that most people won't notice anything until their power is off.

Remember: even if the power is off, you can still create and distribute a flyer using the old-fashioned hectographic spirit duplicator (a tray of gelatin, a carbon paper stencil, some ink, and paper). Oh, a manual typewriter would help (the ribbon doesn't have to work).

Robert Waldrop (Access to Catholic Social Justice Teachings) (Y2K and Civil Society) Story about Y2K in Kansas City


-- Chuck, a night driver (, June 02, 1999


Thanks Chuck, those are all good points, and I agree completely with your analysis as to WHY they are needed. You have offered solutions that are practical and realistic (unlike our government's). I really like your monocle too! You should wear it more often, (it's kinda sexy)As for your comments on "revolution".......there is a tremendous amount of truth to this analogy. I've considered the Internet to be "the underground for truth"!

-- Will continue (, June 02, 1999.

I'd like to see the web address for those generator plans....

-- Shimrod (, June 02, 1999.

Will, this isn't mine, this is just a catch off of another listserve. Thanks for the compliment though.

-- Chuck, a night driver (, June 02, 1999.

address for the home-made generator is:

They also have other useful info. Enjoy.

-- Bill (, June 02, 1999.

Sorry, slight error. Its:

-- BIll (, June 02, 1999.

FWIW I've seen and heard of Bob Waldrop's stuff in other venues...while I may not agree with all of his politics, this guy is for real, and he walks his talk, never mind the cost.


-- Arlin H. Adams (, June 02, 1999.

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