Hoff 1, Flint 0

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TB2K spinoff uncensored : One Thread

I had a brief debate with Hoffmeister on the csy2k newsgroup a couple weeks after rollover. I took the position that Yourdon was sincerely in error, and that his knowledge of the code and of project histories had been improperly projected beyond its proper scope. In other words, that Yourdon mistakenly thought that IT and computers generally were both more fragile and more important than they actually are. After all, we all tend to exaggerate the importance of our own professions in our own minds. I felt that Yourdon's continued unwillingness to come to terms with his error represented a desperate attempt to save professional face.

Hoffmeister was having no part of any such argument! Hoff argued that Yourdon was selling fear for profit, plain and simple. He pointed out that Yourdon *could* have moderated the glazed-eyed-fanatic flavor of his forum with a few words, and chose not to speak them. He *could* have reined in his handpicked moderators/censors who were getting out of control, and chose not to. He *could* have observed (as deJager did) that things were under control, since he was ideally positioned to know it. He didn't.

Instead, Yourdon did all he could to promote FUD and sell "get rich off of y2k" opportunities. He's been putting together a "Humpty Dumpty" manuscript on how to *recover* from what never happened, and he needs a market. He not only had ample knowledge that y2k would be no big deal, he had a panorama of opportunities to behave honestly and did not do so. His actions have been entirely consistent with the building of a cult following, and inconsistent with anything else.

This latest dustup reopens this argument, and provides numerous (and much more explicit) opportunities to examine Yourdon the person. And how do these play out?

Well, let's see.

Yourdon *claims* He sent me an explanatory email. I never saw it.

Yourdon *claims* He will respond to polite posts questioning these decisions. I sent one, and got no reply.

Yourdon *claims* the reasons for being banned will be "messages that contain pornography, excessive obscenity, or racist or slanderous/libelous attacks -- as well as sales pitches, advertisements, etc." and spamming. The banned people have done NONE of the above. (Incidenally, a sizeable number of people who HAVE done some or all of the above repeatedly are welcomed with open arms. You get one guess whose opinions those people parrot.)

Yourdon *claims* He welcomes "heated, raucous debates." Those on the banned list were the most effective voices of dissent, but almost never raucous and rarely heated.

Yourdon *claims* that "There is no 'approval' required", yet approval clearly IS required.

Yourdon *claims* "We'll warn offenders", yet the banned people received no warning at all.

Finally (this one is rich), Yourdon *claims* that He is acceding to the wishes of His hand-picked puppets, not making these decisions Himself. Yet one of them (Wilferd) writes: "I did let Ed know that I supported him in his decision regarding Flint." Uh, WHOSE decision there, Wilferd? Oops.

For those who just cannot seem to find any pattern to the character and integrity demonstrated, I offer the following paraphrase --

[They came for the spammers but I never spammed, so I made no protest.

Then they came for those who posted on the "enemy" forum but I never posted there, so I made no protest.

Then they came for those who correctly argued against the Official Truth, but I was never correct so I made no protest...]

The fact that there are some Americans on that forum who STILL don't get the point is astounding. "Those who trade liberty for security end up with neither". Sound familiar?

Maybe someone who hasn't yet been "disappeared" can post a link to this venue over on the new "Tell me what to think so Yourdon will like me" board. We really do need a place where Bill Schenker can post his invaluable thoughts, and have them considered by people capable of reading.

-- Flint (flintc@mindspring.com), March 03, 2000


I say we ban everyone that's not banned on the new board - no wait, I'm not banned... have a good weekend all, I'll check in Monday to see where the chips have fallen.

-- RC (randyxpher@aol.com), March 03, 2000.

Maybe someone who hasn't yet been "disappeared" can post a link to this venue over on the new ... board.


-- Steve Heller (steve@steveheller.com), March 03, 2000.

Flint, thanks for venting and I hope that now that it's off your chest, you can move on.

I'm really afraid that if too many people concentrate on dissing Ed Yourdon, this board will turn into another "Debunky". I hope I made it clear that what this forum is for is to attract ALL views, the old regulars with on both side of the fence, and the fence sitters as well.

-- Old TB2K forum regular (freespeech@yahoo.com), March 03, 2000.

Flint...FWIW...I'm not sure exactly why you were denied access to the new board. I certainly didn't find anything particularly offensive about your postings. Sometimes you were irritating, but certainly not guilty of anything worthy of being banned. (Of course, banning some posters, like LadyLogic, DoomersSuck, and Y2KPro is a no-brainer.) But since Ed controls the board, it seems as though you are the odd man out. I'm suprised that he doesn't offer a trial period for all other of those posters who were not disruptive as those listed above.

Anyway,...be well

TM (now Sangamon Kid at new board)

-- TM (mercier7@pdnt.com), March 03, 2000.

What you all have done here is made a wonderful example and have followed my lead. For I am announcing here, in lieu of recent events, that I am in fact, God.

I know its going to be hard to believe. But I am God, in the flesh. And I would hope that each and every one of you will rally in front of me and lift up my one voice.

A better America, a better world, a better soul.

I look forward to establishing my kingdom here on earth, as it is in heaven. And I promise to each of you, a mansion in my world.

Keep up the good work. For eternity we shall laugh and flame all those who disregard our wisdom, and our ways.

Sincerely, With Warmest Regards,

Your Lord

-- William Jefferson Clinton (Bill@whitehouse.gov), March 03, 2000.

Don't worry, old TBK regular, I won't belabor Flint's point, but I'm certainly glad he made the point. I frankly feel betrayed by Ed Yourdon. After I read his book, I thought there was a possiblity for disaster, and so we prepared. Actually, I still believe in being prepared, for at least a month. (We were once without power for a week during an ice storm and it seem like a month.)

But I too have been amazed that he never said one, tiny word to the "glazed-eye-fanatics." He wouldn't have had to censor them, just a word to say that they might be a tad over into the Twilight Zone. In fact in some of my posts, after reading a raving fanatic post, I would say I felt like I'd wandered into the TZ. And as a bookseller, columnist, and strong advocate of freedom of speech, I couldn't believe that Ed, as a published writer, would allow posts to be deleted or people to be banned from a forum.

Frankly some of the people on that board were as scary as the maurauders they feared, should Y2K have been serious. Flint, sorry old buddy, but I think Hoff was right. I think Ed was in it for the big bucks, plain and simple, and his mellow demeanor was just a facade.

Anyone who has read my posts since the rollover, has head me state more than once that I was a fool caught up in the fear and insecurity of a bunch of hate and fear mongers. No, I'm not blaming them. It is my own poverty ridden background that has always made me a pushover for security. People like Yourdon, North, Hyatt, know how to play into that insecurity. Plus I know less than nothing about computers, so there you are; a fool in the making.

And I do believe anyone should be welcome on a forum, no matter what their position, or lack of tact.

I wish someone that was computer savvy would post the article by the editor of Countryside Magazine on here. It was very thought provoking piece. It was in the last issue; aybe it's on their site, I haven't checked.

-- gilda (jess@listbot.com), March 03, 2000.

Old Regular:

Well, I suppose so. But I was more careful than usual to cite actual quotes from Ed's actual new forum to back up nearly all of what I wrote. And I personally am much more in favor of a "what's going on here" forum than a "I have the Truth (without data), and anyone who doesn't agree is a polly" forum.

Also, as you are doubtless aware, I always viewed most of the debunker people as similar in nature to the TB2K people. I joked that CPR and Milne both used the same AI to generate their posts, changing only one minor input parameter. In other words, both screamed at people who disagreed out of religious conviction, rather than hard thinking. And I find it sad (but undeniable on the face of current evidence) that Yourdon is the same way, only much slimier about it. HE appointed those censors himself, HE told them who was not to be approved (by Wilferd's own inadvertent testimony), and then HE claimed he "chose" not to override their opinion. When every damn one of them knows they serve at Yourdon's whim.

Do you not slap your forehead in amazement when every question about who is banned and why is ignored? When Ed must spam his own forum with SHUT UP notices, and then delete all the threads started by people who are uncomfortable with thought police? When those who consistently violate the *written* guidelines but parrot Ed's position are permitted to attack, but those who never broke a single rule aren't allowed to defend themselves?

Are you really asking me to "pretend" I don't notice these things? Granted my interpretation is biased. Hopefully some reasonable person will point this out and make a strong case that I'm wrong.

I trust you, and I think you're doing a yeoman job of creating a useful forum. I want to contribute to it and not kill it off. So forgive my irritation with a man I used to really admire, before I got to know him. I have been disillusioned badly, and I'm venting it. But as ever, using the evidence.

-- Flint (flintc@mindspring.com), March 03, 2000.


I was (am) a relative newbie to TB2000 (Dec. 99). It was right after I started lurking there that "Hoff" was outed. I obviously knew none of the personalities involved or what had gone before but with his leaving and then you and Ken Decker (among many others), I instinctively knew that the forum had lost an important element.

I always enjoyed your posts. You can obviously turn a phrase as they say. As I can get a little "out there" myself at times, it's nice to have the benefit of different opinions and points of view. For me, anyway, I need that kind of balance.

You seem to make some compelling points above. Again, though, since I am a recent addict, don't know Mr. Yourdon or own his book, I am neutral on the subject. A particular individual's motivations don't necessarily concern me and he has always been kind and helpful to me when replying to questions I direct at him.

It is still (always) my decision as to when I reach into my pocket and for whom.

And hey, no shit about Dr. Schenker. Great stuff!


-- Jimmy Splinters (inthe@dark.com), March 03, 2000.

Our Man Flint,

I must say I tried to give Ed Yourdon the benefit of the doubt. He was usually civil and I thought he might have just taken his out-of- date metrics a step to far. After his Sayonara, I thought I smelled a rat. Then, his Rodney Dangerfield essay was laughable. Now, we have Yourdon returning to sit at the head of his personal church. After his inept performance in front of the Senate, I thought Yourdon might simply be a naive fellow lost outside of computer geekdom. Now, I am inclined to favor Hoffman explanation. Yourdon is huckster who cashed in his declining IT reputation for a Gary North-type business.

-- Ken Decker (kcdecker@worldnet.att.net), March 03, 2000.

Flint -- hard to argue with your points. They created a set of rules, and themselves violated them before they even opened the door.

That's tres uncool.

I created a "RefugeeBomb2000" forum on ezboard, feel free to visit and post. Same goes for anyone, so long as they don't spam, threaten, etc. "Moderation" will be light as a spring breeze, and hopefully never exercised.

-- Charles Underwood Farley (
chuck@u.farley), March 03, 2000.

Ugh, sorry 'bout the ugly link, but it works.

-- Charles Underwood Farley (chuck@u.farley), March 03, 2000.


What's with these names? We have an Al K. Lloyd and a Chuck U. Farley. Should I come back as Lynne C. Doyle? What do you think?

Anyway, I think it's best if we all try to congregate in one place to begin with. For myself, I chose this because the software is familiar and there's no overhead to creating an account or logging in. But if some other place proves better later, we can move. But I don't want those who still think for themselves to wander off because they're lost, or get split up unnecessarily.


Deliciously ironic that the nominal reason for including me out was a post I made to pull your leg, on another forum even. Interesting that not one of those True Believers that are Oh So Offended by my humor choose to mention this context, since you're as hated as I am. Me needling you muddies the waters of Good and Evil something terrible. But doesn't exist if ignored, thank Ed.

-- Flint (flintc@mindspring.com), March 03, 2000.

As to the nom de merde, it was necessary after receiving some thinly veiled threats from a sysop who shall (in the interest of leaving sleeping dogs lie) remain nameless.

That I was "on the same side" brought home to me the realization that something wasn't quite right there.

As to the other forum, I wasn't aware of this when I started that one. I was incensed at the casual use of the "god key", and the above the law mentality that manifested itself in the amazing sequence of events that transpired. I mean really, coming up with WRITTEN rules, and then the FIRST violators are the people who wrote them? And NO apology, no nothing when the facts come out?

Sad, really sad.

So, I took a few minutes to put up the other site. Anyone is welcome there unless ONCE THERE they engage in abuse. And "abuse" has the conventional definition, i.e., spamming, threats, and the like. "Disagrees with", "argues", or "has wrong ideas" are not "abuse".

-- Charles Underwood Farley (chuck@u.farley), March 03, 2000.

Let's see...do I want to read yet another thread about chemtrails, or a posting by Flint? Maybe a thread about conspiracy? Nah...Flint or "y2k was a coverup"...? Flint or no Flint...?

-- Moi (Ibegto@refuse.this), March 03, 2000.

Flint, bud, no need to keep score.

Yes, I think I've had EY's MO down for quite awhile. But it was just an opinion, based on what I saw. Obviously, somewhat, umm, boltered by recent events.

My advice is to let it go. I know it's tough; God knows, it's been tough these last few months, weaning myself. And I still lurk quite frequently.

Yourdon is down to playing to his "core" audience. My view is to let him have at it. His days of potentially reaching and affecting a larger audience are gone. If he wants to play demi-god to the "Remnant" (and I don't use that word lightly), it's his life. And he'll have to answer for it, in the end.

-- Hoffmeister (hoff_meister@my-deja.com), March 03, 2000.


One thing I will never understand is why you both put so much energy into all of this?? Man get a life. You don't agree with the majority of the views here, you proclaim to know so much more than anyone else here that you can't be gaining any knowledge. If you dont like Yourdon or his followers why dont you just move on?? Flint, to me you really sounded pathetic when you were complaining about being banned from his new forum. Why do you care???? It's time to move on amigo!!! Hey why dont I??

-- sheep (fleece@eritter.net), March 04, 2000.


Hasn't that already been answered to your satisfaction? Hell, man, I'm here because I like kicking anthills and watching all you stupid people react. I look down from my Olympian superiority with self- satisfied amusement. It's the only real pleasure I can find in life.

I thought all of that was official by now.

-- Flint (flintc@mindspring.com), March 05, 2000.


Is it any wonder Mutha called Russ Lipton "Lapdog™"?

How appropriate!

-- Super Polly (Fu_Q_y2kfreaks@hotmail.com), March 05, 2000.

I'm new to this forum. First order of business was to check the archives. I came across this gem & just had to bump it to the top.

I must say I was sucked in for about a year. Though never a 'worshipper' of Ed, I nonetheless was taken by his concern for us, his interest in getting the message out. I met him at a conference in D.C. more than a year ago & was impressed by his delivery, amiability, apparent connections with Capitol Hill & CEO's alike. I thought he had his hand on the pulse of the Y2K problem.

I took Ken Decker to task (privately) for defiling Eds good name back when EY said sayonara. My apologies Ken. You had him pegged.


-- Bingo1 (howe9@shentel.net), May 09, 2000.

Thanks Bingo, I hadn't seen this when I came back in March. Actually, I think that CPR had Ed pegged right from the beginning. At that time I thought he believed in what he said (a ten year depression) with the hope of selling his stuff. Then when he "returned" from his vacation, I think his motivation came from worshipping fans. He has given up his "professional" career for the adulation. Deep down he knew that it wouldn't result in a ten year depression, he knew things were going just fine, yet the brown nose syndrome wouldn't let him concede the fight.

-- Maria (anon@ymous.com), May 09, 2000.


I won't contest your contrast between Ed's claims and his actions. They are pretty much uncontestable. What strikes me as off kilter is your and Hoff's conclusion that Ed deliberately traded in his IT career to go into the doom business, as if it were an economic decision.

If that is so, it was probably a bad move for him. I would be very puzzled how to turn a smallish fanatical bunch of Internet groupies into much of a living, short of harvesting them regularly for cash. At least semi-annually. Ed has failed to do this. His new business, viewed as an economic venture, would be dying on the vine.

That leads me to conclude that it isn't an economic motive that is driving Mr. Yourdon to acquire his very own flock of admirers. It is purely a psychological investment. Adoration, admiration, recognition and praise are potent non-monetary rewards. EZ Board is not a business for Ed. It is a deep personal satisfaction to him. He gets to be a patriarch with an extensive family who obeys his wishes. He likes it.

>> Do you not slap your forehead in amazement when every question about who is banned and why is ignored? <<

No. I am blissfully unaware of everything that happens at EZBoard until someone like you or Y2KPro comes to this forum and mentions the goings-on over there. Wishing you could post at EZ Board is like a released prisoner longing to return to the familiarity of his prison cell.

-- Brian McLaughlin (brianm@ims.com), May 09, 2000.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ