Re: Petroleum and Y2K

David Crook (
Fri, 08 Oct 1999 10:13:55 -0700

At 04:36 AM 10/8/99 -0700, Ka-Ping Yee wrote:
>On Thu, 7 Oct 1999, Robert Harley wrote:
>> >Wave your eyeballs over this (sent me by my sister):
>> I waved them over it and it is a load of idiotic bullshit of the
>> same pathetic standard as most of the other Y2K scare stories.
>So you say this. I have seen other people have this reaction too.
>But why?
>I haven't made up my mind exactly how concerned to be yet. However,
>one thing that bugs me a lot is that whenever we put all the facts
>together, the outlook seems pretty troubling. I have read several
>explanations of how bad things will happen, and they are usually
>filled with facts. But all the reassuring statements seem to consist
>only of "Well, it just *can't* be that bad". I haven't come across
>one yet that is really supported by facts.
>Do you know something about oil pumping that i don't? Are they in
>fact not controlled by embedded systems as the article describes?

Guys, I don't mean to say this lightly, but I have to tell you something.
You are the Y2K problem. There, its done.

The common masses are never going get "all the details" on minuta like the
Y2K readyness of oil pumping embeded systems. So there are two ways too
look at this problem, either things are going to go to hell in a handbasket
or things are going to be okay. I will now tell you why things are going
to be okay.

Disasters occur all the time.

Yes, its true, check out your news paper. Fairly large scale scenes of
destruction occur EVERY year, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods hurricanes,
really harsh winters, etc. And while there is the immediate loss of life
during these events, I have yet to see society collapse and revert to
anarchy. There is an interruption of some services, but guess what, they
get turned back on.

Y2K will probably be a big headache for all those utiltiy company people
and everyone else on Y2K watch, that MAY have to manually intervene and
restore services IF the automatic systems fail. But there will be people
on this job. The lights MAY go out, the power grid might fail, but all
you chicken littles have for some reason assumed that we have lost the
capability to turn the lights back on. Total and complete nonsense.

Even a worse case scenario of total and widespread loss of electricity and
water over large regions is NOTHING MORE THAN AN INCONVIENCE TO MOST
PEOPLE. Sure, some folks, such as the sick, the elderly, etc, this will be
more than an inconvience, and some may die because of this. But that
happens ever winter anyways. Its tragic, but its not the end of the world
as we know it.

A few months ago there was a pretty good article about Y2K in wired.
Basically it pointed out that at least in America we have already been
there and done that. The last really harsh winter blacked out a lot of the
northeast for an extended period of time. Some places where without basic
services for an extened (2-3 weeks) period of time. There was NO huge loss
of life, there were not mobs of looters roming the streets. People just
dealt with it.

Earlier I said you were the problem. The only real issue about Y2K that
isn't a technical one is panic. Scared people do dumb things. Scared
people in large masses can do really dumb things. Every time you forward
one of these doomsday letters from a KNOWN crank, you are sending something
along with it, fear. You aren't educating the masses, you are spreading
unfounded rumors and panic. So think a minute when you say "Well, it can't
hurt if I send this out", because it can. These emails get spread around
like bad 2nd hand stories about kindney theft rings, which are totally
false, yet you can finds tons of people who will swear that it really

Your doomsday predictions are SELF FULFILLING. Rumors about food shortages
cause people to stockpile, which depeletes supply. Rumors about civil
unrest cause people to buy guns and ammo, which it should be obvious that
this country has ENOUGH of those already. Rumors about bank collapses
causes runs on banks.

Stop it already. You are the problem.

Sorry, I just had to be serious for a moment.

David Crook

David Crook -
CommWerks - Industrial Strength Internet Solutions