Tuesday, June 21, 2005


TRD101: IMNSHO (It's My New Show, In My Not So Humble Opinion)

By Michael Maynard

There's no shortage of blogs already. Why create another?

Egotism - the belief that I have something new and different to say. Yes, it's
my not so humble opinions that will be written here frequently and hopefully daily.

I've written columns before, most recently for the Washington Post/Newsweek
syndicate. The columns were well received and fun to do.

That was 5 years ago. Times are a lot different now, even in that
short span.

At that time, it was Y2K that was going to be the end of the world as we know it.
I wrote that it wasn't going to be any big deal and to sit back and enjoy the
transition to the new millenium (technically which occured in 1/1/2001). I
mostly received favorable reviews which led to my 15 minutes of fame
on TV.

But I also received a lot of hate mail and some death threats from
the Armageddonists and the religious right, who accused me of
not taking the end of the world (as we know it) seriously.
I was going to rot in hell for advising others to do the same.

I blew them off and on 1/2/2000 , surprisingly enough, I stopped
getting mail from them. This was my first real interaction with the
general public and my first unreal interaction with the right-wing
lunatics who increasingly dominate media coverage.

9/11/2001 did change everything -- it was what was going to happen
on 1/1/2000 and a lot more. I still have nightmares about watching the
planes crash into the World Trade Center and the subsequent
collapse of the Twin Towers.

Y2K was amorphous to most people, a computer geek phenomenon in
cyberspace. There was no one person or group to specifically blame
for Y2K. It was those damn computers and networks who were taking over our lives.

9/11/2001 was, in contrast, all too real, and is etched upon this nation's psyche today.
The US wants to return to the 1950's with the suburban house, station wagon,
2 1/2 kids and the dog. We want Ike with his placid demeanor to let us all
know things will be alright, Chet and David to tell us the news and then we can
go back to being the Cleavers again.

There was no 24 hour news focused on the freak shows of the day. There were
no talking heads putting on their pre-staged biased rants confusing what the
real issues were. There was no Al Qaeda, no Internet pedophile predators,
no Fox News, no "reality shows", no no nos. You could trust the government,
the church, the banks, your employer and each other to do the right thing by you.

But no, in reality, you really couldn't and shouldn't have blindly trusted any of them.
Even Ike warned of the dangers of the military-industrial complex back then. All those
things we didn't want to know about in the 50's were there, just not as visible as they
are today. The seeds of Y2K were also started in the 1950's, all for the want of adding
two digits in the front of the date stored on computer disks.

Just as I needed to speak sensibily about the truth of what Y2K was all about, I again
feel the need to do so today. It's my (more or less) new show, and it's my not
so humble opinions that will be posted here. As it was 5 years ago, I intend and
hope for this to be a (sensible) dialogue between you and me.

And as it was 5 years ago, this is the TRD101, the Real Deal basics, for today, like it or not.

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