Oxnard, Ca Goes Doomer?

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I am a GI lurker who lives in Oxnard, Ca, which lies in the northern fringes of the greater LA area. Firstly, to all other GI's I just want to say that there are a number of us who are quietly preparing as much as our finances will allow. We are out there, we just don't like to get involved in the flame wars that go on in these discussion groups. The main reason for me posting is an article in the Oxnard edition of the Ventura County Star. In this article is a report about how the city's Y2K Task Force has put together a 28-page handbook titled "Preparing for the year 2000: A Community Guide". Among other things, the article states: "Other things the handbook suggests people stockpile: food and water, water purification kit, flashlight with plenty of batteries, first aid kit, cash and change, toilet paper, towelettes, and a portable radio." Granted, I know that this is not much, but it shows a remarkable shift in attitude for a city that a few months ago, didn't even have a Y2K section on its homepage. My point is that hopefully, we will see more initiatives like this that will get people to think so that we can have our communities prepared. Like it or not, in the end we are all in this together.

I am relatively new at this, so my linking skills are nonexistant. On the online version of the Ventura County star in an archive updated through 8/27. This story was printed on 8/28 and according to the site, the archive should be updated by 8/31. The link to the archives is: http://www.staronline.com/archives.html

-- zeus ferguson (jessbedatyou@webtv.net), August 30, 1999


It is interesting that people allways recommend to prepare by having a flashlight and "plenty" of batteries.

What good will that do should you drop that flashlight and the bulb dies.

Having at least 2 spare bulbs for each flashlight should be in every recommendation.

-- justme (justme@justme.net), August 30, 1999.

Zeus, I am just speculating here, but the whole southern end of California, Arizona and New Mexico has a big problem with illegal immigrants. They have become a big burden on our welfare, public schools, and medical system. Can you imagine what is going to happen to these people when TSHTF? It's just too mind boggling to even comprehend the path of devastation it will leave. Don't be afraid to post anything here because we need new opinions and fresh information. Good Luck!

-- bardou (bardou@baloney.com), August 30, 1999.


Being an ex-So. Cal resident I have speculated on the same cultural dissonance between the haves and have-nots in So. Cal. There are basicly two industries there. Biotech and agriculture. Agriculture is Californias longest and most enduring product. Without the back- breaking below minimum wage labor provided by the thousands of migrant farm workers, California would be nothing.

Unfortuantly picking Tomatoes for 3 or 4 bucks an hour makes it difficult to afford things like health care and car insurance. Since farm workers get no benefits they end up having to turn to the state for assistance. Most choose to live as simply as possible and send the bulk of their earnings down to family in Mexico where their dollars have some decent earning power.

Withoug these steady, hard working folks, California would grind to an economic halt.

Many migrant farm workers live in the hills in small camps. These people are already Y2k compliant. They have beans and rice and water collection systems and chickens and guns. They are adept at concealing themselves from police. They know the terrain very well and are the indiginous peoples of the area.

The rest of the civilian population is by and large a bunch of Latte'- slurping cheap-wine-sipping corporate middle managers and geeks. Their idea of roughing it is car camping with freeze-dried gourmet food.

Finally the third largest presence is the military. Lots and lots of Marine and Airforce families. These folks are much more inclined to go camping and fishing on the weekend. If they are prepared they will most likely do very well.

It is going to be extremely interesting to see what sort of cultural mix arises their in the next year.

-- R (riversoma@aol.com), August 30, 1999.

They are hard working people and they rely on the farming infrastructure to sustain themselves and family the same as we do. However, they are no different than anyone else who is not prepared. Those people who go camping in their car and eat gourmet food will be in for a rude awakening. The military may be there for those who are military but that's even a big IF. Eventually food will run out and regardless of who you are, hunger knows no boundary. We will all be in the same boat unless you have prepared well. I don't expect farmer worker's to get it anymore than my DGI neighbor down the road. That's what is really bugging me right now. The thought of having to fight off people who could have helped themselves is maddening in itself.

-- bardou (bardou@baloney.com), August 30, 1999.

There's another factor you folks are ignoring: Who surfs the internet?

Almost everything I know about y2k I got off the net. If I weren't "wired" I would know next to nothing about the bug, & would probably be unprepared.

Scoff at latte-drinkers all you like, but they're probably sipping their lattes while reading... this board.

Contrarywise: Does the Mexican population of So Cal have any clue about y2k?

-- look (whos@lurking.now), August 30, 1999.


your problem is water, and not having enough of it.

Buy it, store it, or MOVE!

-- nothere nothere (notherethere@hotmail.com), August 30, 1999.

Contrarywise: Does the Mexican population of So Cal have any clue about y2k?

Actually, the majority of the population of So Cal don't have a clue, regardless of ethnicity or financial position.

R makes some great points.

I just wanted to share this. Recently, areas of Orange County have been up in arms regarding migrant workers bringing down their property values. If you're familiar with the area then you know that it is growing quickly and is fairly affluent with lower crime rates and higher property values.

The interesting part of this is that migrant workers are moving to where they are finding work. Somebody is paying them. The pay is based upon the standard corporate pay guidelines which run something along the lines of "pay them the least amount it will take to keep them happy and on the job." This little bit of insight was given to me by a Vice President of Human Resources one time in an exit interview. This kind of pay guideline runs the entire spectrum of jobs from the tomato picker to the department manager of a major corporation and everything in between. Bottom line, they make money doing what they can and support the economy of the area, but they aren't good enough to live there. It's an age old scenario.

How will the area fair during the rollover? I suspect that it is more likely that people who have become used to a certain way of life with modern comforts, etc. may actually be more inclined to react badly. I'm more worried about all the people who aren't used to brownouts and blackouts and disruptions in phone service, etc. You know, the people of what ever color or financial background who feel a sense of road rage when they get cut off in traffic. This isn't to say that the migrant workers may not react badly. Many sure did during the riots but more importantly - after the riots subsided - when the looting party began.

I've personally had thoughts about getting in to Mexico after the rollover as part of my bug out plan. Great fishing, good beach camping : )

Regarding Ventura County and especially Oxnard. This is VERY interesting in light of the recent Pentagon Papers. Oxnard is home a large Coast Gaurd facility if my memory serves me correctly.



-- Michael Taylor (mtdesign3@aol.com), August 30, 1999.

In response to some of your points: First of all, yes there may be many latte drinking bubbleheads, but not everyone here is like that. Yes, many will be in for a rude awakening, but maybe that's not such a bad thing. With regards to Coast Guard and military, we have a Coast Guard base at Channel Islands Harbor. We also surround Port Hueneme, a SeaBee Base. A few miles to the south is Pt. Mugu, a missle test center. With respect to immigrants, I will say that most of them are clueless about y2k. I have never seen it mentioned on Spanish tv. However, many of them live simply, but well. They already buy in bulk because many have large families and have to make what little they have stretch. These people are adept at buying frugally and must last through the off seasons from farming. Here in Ventura County, we are still surrounded by farm land. Both the cities of Port Hueneme and Ventura use well water and the climate is really mild. If Oxnard can get the message out to migrant families, they can prepare. Trust me, there are about 10 99 cent stores around here, it can be done cheaply. These people may rely on the state for services, but they are used to not relying on the government. Think of where they are from. They know how to make do without, unlike, sad to say, many native US citizens.

-- zeus ferguson (jessbedatyou@webtv.net), August 30, 1999.

zeus is probably right. We moved from Ventura county, and still have a business there. If Ventura county were a protected isolated pocket, I would worry less about my friends still there. It is the possible spillover of angry and desperate people that concerns me the most. The law enforcement down there is not equipped to handle any massive uprising by people. A lot of damage could be wreaked before the military contains it somehow. I lived there for thirteen years and all the Hispanic families I knew were great. These are also people who still know how to network and cooperate with each other. And yes, of course, I am aware of the limited roads in and out. It all depends on the level of disruptions, and the corresponding degree of tolerance/intolerance by the people living down there. I still remember Reginald Denny.

-- Mumsie (Shezdremn@aol.com), August 30, 1999.

Just to clarify a few points.

I am Hispanic...both Spanish and Mexican along with who knows what and I am a native of the L.A. area.

Zeus, I hope the word gets out. So far, we've seen waves where information gets out and there is a sudden burst in awareness that is followed by spin, spin, spin and the public goes back to sleep.

I'm a graphic designer with access to DTP tools. If a can help you in any way, as in flyers, etc. please e-mail me. I don't want anyone to suffer or be caught off guard when TSHTF. And, based upon recent developments, I think it's going to hit the fan with the force of a world wide hurricane.



-- Michael Taylor (mtdesign3@aol.com), August 30, 1999.

My family first came to so. California in 1868. Many of my close family are still in so. and central California. (Obviously, I've moved away...for good reason!)

1) As mentioned above, the key to this semi-desert and desert area is indeed, water. Without the California Water Project, Los Agneles and environs would be a disaster area. Trying to evacuate so. California would require a long term effort. I doubt if you could get enough people out before the water ran out.

2) Having a large pool of people with low-tech skills isn't all bad. My experience is that the "undocumented" workers are both hard working and friendly...if you give them a chance.

3) However, there are several ethnic groups, not all of which work well with all of the others... Most individuals, yes. However, some groups are there which are trying to foster hate and violence. If there are shortages, it would be easy to convince some groups that they are being discriminated against (even if this was not true).

4) The police has lost a good deal of community support, especially in the minority communities. The Rodney King incident, among others, has hurt the willingness of the public to cooperate with the police. This works against peace.

The summary is that southern California exists in a precarious position, with water being a key element. The prudent preparations of the hispanic plurality (largest group, but not a majority, yet) will play a key role in the survival of the area.

-- Mad Monk (madmonk@hawaiian.net), August 30, 1999.

I spent my time in SoCal courtesy of Uncle and the idea of LA's population on the move after "the Big One" had me running desert rat survival scenarios in my head almost every minute I was there. I'm so very glad that I don't have to consider being near the LA Basin in the face of Y2K.

While the Big One would have a plus of damaging and blocking roadways to reduce travel by possible troublemakers. Y2K won't have any similar "penning-up" side effects. So if Ventura County "gets it", have they decided where and how they're going to block the 101 and other key arteries to keep the masses of DGI humanity back in the LA Basin?

And if such thoughts haven't popped into the minds of Ventura County's Y2K population, then they really don't get it.


-- Wildweasel (vtmldm@epix.net), August 30, 1999.

Let me see if I've got this straight: The poor downtrodden illegal immigrants aren't making enough to pay for medical care, so they have to turn to the state. But, they are here so they can send money back to their families in Mexico.

Now, where does the money to send to Mexico come from? Maybe from the savings they get by having the TAXPAYERS IN THE U.S. pay for their medical care?

Sounds like a bunch of parasites to me.

-- A (A@AisA.com), August 30, 1999.

Oh heartless one.

Those families work hard. They do the jobs that the "Americans" don't want to do. They are some of the nicest people you could ever meet. I guess you are superior to someone who works at back-breaking labor for low pay and then sacrificially contributes for the good of the family unit,.. in your mind anyway. The families that I knew were hardly there to scam our welfare and/or medical system. Many of them had left dire poverty and near starvation. They were NOT looking for a handout!! Have you ever driven by a field before the sun is fully risen and watched them bend over working in it until near dark? If you encountered families in public, they were clean, polite and pleasant. One of your ancestors emigrated here, but probably of superior stock, huh?

-- Mumsie (Shezdremn@aol.com), August 31, 1999.


City's latest manual Y2K compatible HOW-TO GUIDE: Handbook designed to tell residents how to prepare for effects of possible computer glitches.

By Raul Hernandez Staff writer Published August 28, 1999

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------

~Should the Y2K glitch make computer systems go bonkers Jan. 1, resulting in electricity and gas being turned off, ATMs refusing to dispense money and communications being disrupted, Oxnard residents will be ready. So will the city's pets.

The city's Y2K Task Force has put together a 28-page handbook titled "Preparing for the Year 2000: A Community Guide."

It spells out how people should prepare in case computers freeze and create major catastrophes. It also gives information on how to care for your pets should computers go haywire, such as having a pet first- aid kit on hand.

"What we've done is that we've outlined things that you can do in your home to make sure that not only your family but also your loved ones, including your pets, can be ready," Deputy City Manager Grace Magistrale-Hoffman said. "Pets are very near and dear to people's hearts."

Other things the handbook suggests people stockpile: food and water; water purification kit; flashlight with plenty of batteries; first- aid kit; cash and change; toilet paper; towelettes; and a portable radio.

ButMagistrale-Hoffman said she doesn't expect a Y2K computer crash to occur. So far, she said, the city's computers that have been checked are found to be Y2K foolproof.

"We've done a lot of testing already, but we'll continue to do more tests," she said. "One of the things we have to do is that we have to test every PC (personal computer) that we have."

Magistrale-Hoffman said the city owns about 300 personal computers, and each one must undergo at least two tests.

A city Y2K preparedness exercise is planned for Oct. 6, in conjunction with the Y2K Task Force, which consists of city department heads, Police and Fire department officials and information systems technicians.

The exercise will include the Community Emergency Response Teams and Disaster Response Teams, as well as city employees and community members.

"What we're going to do is that we're going to design an exercise and will have different scenarios," she said. "One scenario may be that we're out of electricity for a week or two weeks or something like that. Or maybe the stores have to close because the cash registers don't work."

The city staff is expected to ask the City Council on Tuesday to give staff members permission to distribute the handbook to the community. The City Council meets at 7 p.m. in the Council Chambers, 305 West Third St.

Magistrale-Hoffman said the city's handbook has drawn interest from as far away as Oklahoma.

Supervisor John Flynn said he doesn't know whether the county has or is working on a Y2K handbook for its residents.

"It sounds like a good idea to me," he said.

If the county doesn't have a Y2K handbook, he said, it might be able to use Oxnard's handbook.

"It's no use reinventing the wheel," he said.~

Hmmm.... don't know if they have a handbook for the residents?

-- Mumsie (Shezdremn@aol.com), August 31, 1999.


Was that a field owned by a coorperation, or a field owned by a farmer? Let the 10 begin.

-- R. Wright (blaklodg@hotmail.com), August 31, 1999.

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