Reality Check - Don't Skip This One - For Those Who Aren't Preparing (and everybody else, too) : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I'm borrowing this from another forum, because it tells it like it is:

Beginning of post:

One of the posters to these boards, HCORev, brought some 'eye-opening' info to my attention back in March. This information is no longer available (that is, I could not find it in the Archives), however, I had copied it and want to share it with you now. Please note that it is not my intention to break any rules of this board and I hope that I haven't, however, my goal is to share this information with you so that you might see what happened when folks didn't prepare -- didn't prepare for a possible storm. Y2K might not be a storm, weather-wise, but it still could give us trouble, nobody knows for sure what that trouble will be -- but not being prepared (just in case) could become a real problem for you if trouble does hit. ----------------------------

HCOGRev posted March 07, 1999 02:24 AM --

I am not a programmer. I am a pastor of a South Florida church which was hit hard by hurricane Andrew in 1992. I can tell you first hand what it is like to be without electricity and phone service for 3+ months. We were totally at the mercy of other people who helped us by sending food to us. All the stores were emptied the first day either from looting or from the food being given away by the store which would have lost the perishables anyway. There was chaos for a week until the National Guard finally showed up and even then they could not protect everyone. The US Army was called in and a company of 90 men from the 10th Mountain Division from Fort Drum NY bivouacked on our church property. The police told folks to use whatever means available to protect themselves from looters, burglars, thieves and general riffraff. Several looters got shot by homeowners and to my knowledge there were no arrests nor prosecutions of people defending themselves with guns.

By the second day people were already hungry and thirsty (The water treatment facilities went out and the water was polluted. Many people got sick from diarrhea and some were severely dehydrated.) and there was a near riot on the lawn of our church as we handed out food. People didn't know what was going to happen to them at that point and were desperate for food for their families. One woman burst into tears as we gave her some baby formula and said her baby had nothing to eat for two days. The riot was prevented by a security guard who happened to be passing by and saw the pushing and shoving. He came over and used his physical strength to force the big people from shoving the smaller ones away. I was at a meeting and was not present to help the wmen who were distributing the food and water. Thank God for that security guard.

Now, you must understand that it was possible for us to hand out food because the rest of the country had plenty of it along with utilities and gasoline. They sent it to us by the tractor trailer loads every day. our church was featured prominently on CNN, CBS, ABC, NBC, TBN, CBN and local TV. Many total strangers sent us help. In a widespread blackout there will be no one to send in assistance. Believe me, the trucks won't run if there is no electricity because they do not have adequate supplies of fuel stored at their terminals. America is two days away from real hunger because we are so dependent upon "just in time" deliveries. I have witnessed this fact personally.

Too many homes do not have enough food to feed themselves for a week that they will come to those who do and demand it, beg for it or steal it.

Hannegraaf is so wrong to tell people y2k is no big problem. If the lights go out for just a short while there will be mass confusion. People will not know how long the lights will be off until they come back on, if they do. What fear and panic will do to a nation is a horrible thing to witness. ---------------------------------

HCOGRev, posted March 14, 1999 02:09 AM in the "so you want to hand out food, aye? forum --

This could have been posted on other category sites, I suppose, but I don't know exactly which is any better than this one.

It is a criticism/warning to those who would deign to feed their community during the possible hunger and chaotic times which y2k might create: you had better know what you are up against.

Few things in human behavior match the drive of the desire to eat when truly hungry. Pair that with adults who have hungry children to feed and there is no other basic instinct more powerful, more primal, more visceral. Food riots have killed those who were trying to help the hungry.

Please understand where I am coming from. I believe that Michael Hyatt and Gary North and a host of others are correct when they advise us to save extra for those who come our way and have nothing. I totally agree. I agree that churches and community groups should try to help their neighborhoods. I also agree that y2k is going to be at least a black-out or worse. Here is my warning and I have yet to see anyone broach this subject: you had better devise, implement and test a plan that allows for possible rioting at the food distribution and/or warehousing sites. I have not heard nor read anyone who teaches how to solve this problem.

Having had some experience with food distribution to hungry and riot prone people after Hurricane Andrew, I have concluded that there needs to be two separate places for people to be handled for food distribution--a registration desk where names and addresses can be written on vouchers and a separate and secure door many paces away from the registration desk where only one person may pass through to produce the voucher and receive the pre-measured food package. The amount of food in storage and the storage location should at all times remain proprietary information and out of sight of those receiving the food.

Security guards with weapons permits are a must in dealing with potential mobs. A secure food storage facility needs to be guarded 24/7, with radio communications capability and quick back-up available.

There needs to be back-ups for all plans, routing and equipment failures. Alternatives need to be already planned out. The heat of the moment is not a good time to have to make certain decisions.

If the lights go out for a few days there will be mass chaos. People's worst fears and chain of supply failures will cause the grocery stores to be emptied on the first day. America is only two to three days away from hunger, so thin are the food reserves in the average home and community.

That was true when Andrew hit our town and I have seen nothing new to suggest it has changed substantially. For a more detailed account of Andrew's eye opening for me, go to the Hank Hannegraff thread and read HCOGrev's reply to rainman in this same critics topic forum.

One other suggestion: formulate evacuation plans to be implemented about the second or third day when you run out of food to distribute and people see you fed and unhungry.


HCOGRev, posted March 15, 1999 04:49 PM --

It needs to be mentioned that after Andrew many people were stranded in their neighborhoods for a number of reasons--demolished vehicles, trees blocking all streets in and out, the necessity to guard an unsecurable home--and that created supply problems for many. Others were not able to get passed road blocks imposed by martial law, which became problematic in itself. Basically the National Guard behaved themselves well, but severe abuses of power have been very well documented and some Guardsmen were implicated in felonies themselves. There were a number of locally reported cases of crimes perpetrated by Guardsmen themselves, including, rapes, thefts, and even a murder, believe it or not. Our church was well served by the National Guard and by the Army unit which bivouacked here. The Army and the National Guard did not get along together to my surprise. The Army guys were not supposed to carry weapons, though I have somewhere pictures of weapons on their person and one ironic shot of one of our Sunday School rooms filled with stacks of rifles, mortars and ammo. The Guardmen, however, did carry weapons with live ammo and there were a number of confrontations between law-abiding citizens and the Guard.

On balance, the Homestead Church of God was better off because of the military presence at our facilities, but then we were handing out food for a week before the military showed up, a week not easy to forget. They showed up here because of the food distribution and they benefited from us by using our facility, by giving out the food (it was great publicity for them) and by being the hero to a lot of hurting people. The truth of the matter was that it was the churches in our neighborhoods that were there first, before FEMA, before the Red Cross, before the military, before anyone, giving out food and water and comfort. You can ask any one who lived through Andrew and they will tell you it was God's people who were there first with the most.

Since Andrew, a big change is evident in the federal government role in disaster relief. FEMA has become another alphabet agency, drunk on its own power and authority. We witnessed it changing even during the aftermath of Andrew. While we were receiving and distributing relief, FEMA attempted to appropriate some of the equipment donated to us by various sources, public and private. We had to grow up fast and learn not to trust every bureaucrat who tries to assert authority over one's ministry. But now with the executive orders which our president has signed I can foresee the day when our government will wax more and more powerful over individuals and churches or try to anyway. This is a real concern which those who would distribute food need to contemplate and plan for accordingly.


-- snooze button (, November 14, 1999


I agree and have warned people myself that food distribution to the hungry could be more self endangering than they contemplate. I do not agree with the mish mash of "intinctive parents with hungry children." If they had instincts they would have had preparations and contingency plans for their own children. They are operating from false instincts pretending to themselves they are genuine parents and whole human beings, and trying to "prove" they are not as cold and calculating in their lack as plans as they are to their now suffering children in their own hands. They are criminal minds that are only "decent" so long as life is on a silver platter. It is my hope those with criminal minds upon activating this time around will be under shoot to kill orders.

Some people in L.A. made the sacrifice to purchase earthquake capsules that a child runs into in the event of an earthquake, compared with the cold and calculating parent who stood looking at one and did not make a purchase. To not prepare as a parent is a premeditated act. These people made a deliberate choice not to put aside at least a 3 day kit.

To not prepare for the care of ones family elderly is also a premeditated act.

It is my hope that those in Chicago who do not check up on their elderly parents down the street will be held legally responsible for that parental death. Checking up on their own parents is not something the "Gobmint" should have to do. I think now is an excellent time for the Chicago Mayor to speak about family duty and responsibility during a black out in any case scenario, and I think the City Council should have a loud and hugely publicized "bill" about convicting such families down the street even if it can't or isn't passed. A good bone chilling scare would go a long way I suspect.

I put aside a few food items to be of assistance. That doesn't mean the circumstances will be correct for it but a case of Top Ramen is only 3 bucks. A restaurant sized can of pork and beans was only 2-3 dollars at Smart & Final. It'd go a long way towards easing some suffering. I've about 20 bucks worth of these "mass care" supplies.

-- Paula (, November 14, 1999.

This brings back some REALLY bad memories, when I was with the U.S. military in Somalia, when we were starting to have trouble with a warlord named Aideed. Unarmed Pakastani troops were handing out food to the hungry populace at a food distribution point in southern Mogadishu, the capitol. They were attacked by an angry mob and all but one were shot dead. The one young officer who wasn't shot, died a much more grusome death.

The moral of this story is that food distribution to angry, hungry people can be a deadly thing. In a really bad situation, which Y2K could quickly become, there is a good chance that people who want food will start shooting at the distributors with intent to kill.

So...think about this before you become the wonderful person who wants to distribute food to hungry people.

-- nothing (, November 14, 1999.

What, no recipe for "long pig"...? (If you don't know what it is, look it up; your future in a nutshell)

-- soylent (green@is.people), November 14, 1999.

---Great Post! i hope all the two weekers here, and the "I don't know's" about security, firearms, and mobs take heed of this story. I know I've been trying to hammer home the idea that this won't be little house on the prarie, it'll be more like bosnia, or like the two posts- somalia and florida. Unless folks have witnessed first hand what a riot is like, there is no frame of reference at all. You just can NOT believe how fast and how vicious it is. folks who just five minutes earlier you might have been standing next to in a line someplace will happily take part in stomping you to death if they can get away with it. The vicious pack mentality in human beings is right there, a few microns below the surface. The folks at that church were very brave, also very lucky. If the guard hadn't been there, most likely they would have been robbed by the mobs. the dudes in somalia were just SOL. Being part of a UN force is not popular anywhere. No one (mostly) wants the UN in their area. They'll take the free stuff, but no one wants foreign soldiers, armed or not. for myself, I'll eat acorns and possums before I tolerate any UN goons in my piece of the holler....I'm very upset that our government forces this UN world policeman on our guys and gals in the service. It's nuts. They don't deserve it. the rest of the weird third world better learn a few things pronto-1- quit having families of 15 when you make 500$ a year, and -2- get ready to completely fend for yourselves, cuz all that uncle sugar freebie stuff is going to be drying up quick once the irs tanks, which it will. No puters=no money for uncle sugar. that's what's REALLY got the big bro's scared, because right now we have a lot of folks paying taxes- grumbling, dodging, but paying taxes--after a crash, after the lies are exposed, I bet joe fed gonna have a hard time collecting squat unless it's at the point of a bayonet, and even then they won't get much. fat city for them is just about over.

again, my thanks for those two good anecdotal stories zog

-- zog (, November 14, 1999.

Eat Soylent Green

-- (a@modest.proposal), November 14, 1999.

"You just can NOT believe how fast and how vicious it is. folks who just five minutes earlier you might have been standing next to in a line someplace will happily take part in stomping you to death if they can get away with it. The vicious pack mentality in human beings is right there, a few microns below the surface."

............ yeah? how about another perspective:

Date: Tue, 02 Nov 1999 08:09:22 -0800 Subject: {Y2K} Fwd(2): [CTRL] 60 Days to "Y2K" and "New Millenium's Eve" From: (nessie) To:

-Caveat Lector-

My boss, who's been skeptical thus far about the potential dangers of "Y2K," just heard BAD NEWS from a friend of his, a person with a high-ranking position in the San Mateo (Ca.) Police Department [or Sheriff's Department, I don't remember which...

His friend warned him not to be in San Francisco, and especially not in downtown San Francisco where he works, on New Year's Eve 1999.

Explaining, he told him that local law enforcement agencies were preparing for what they EXPECT to occur in most major cities due to the combination of (1) Y2K-related problems --possible power outages at night, communications systems down-- and (2) unusually massive crowds assembled on the streets late at night to celebrate New Year's Eve AND the beginning of a new millennium. They're anticipating this scenario: first, mass drunken anarchy, with the usual random violence and the overturning and torching of automobiles ... then, knife and GUN violence, as black, Latino, and Asian gangs (who, according to "police intelligence," are plotting to seize this opportunity) arrive on the scene armed, committing hit-and-run criminal acts (robbery, carjacking, rape, etc) on the hapless revellers, and then vanishing, "lost in the crowd," panicking ... everyone... the police join the fray, leading to shootouts on crowded streets between cops and gangs -- seeing which, mobs of outraged inner-city teens surge forward and attack the police ... and finally, this mob hysteria turns even uglier, in a totally brazen looting of downtown retail outlets, arson of "white" properties, and rioting, before long snowballing into a scene that would make the LA riots look like a Boy Scout party ... The police are so vastly outnumbered they have to retreat to save their own skin, the fire department is unable to respond to so many fires at once, there's a near-total blackout due to Y2K-related power failures and the NON-Y2K-related sabotage of utility stations, communications are down between city agencies, traffic is bottlenecked to a standstill because there are automobile collisions everywhere and the congestion caused by the vehicles of revellers, many erupting into "road rage," makes the areas of worst rioting, arson and looting inaccessible to the police and fire departments' emergency vehicles.

City agencies call for the National Guard to restore order, but since the National Guard itself is already thinned out trying to deal with the SAME conditions in SEVERAL cities at the same time, no help is forthcoming ... The MILITARY has to be called in to help, Martial Law will be declared ... Meanwhile, however, the whole city is up in flames and gun battles are going on everywhere between citizens, criminals, and "political radicals" -- while all local government agencies just stand by and watch this with a "hands off" attitude, having decided that intervention to restore "law and order" is IMPOSSIBLE, since they're outnumbered, and under fire themselves, and no backup from the military can be expected for at least days. "Just let 'em kill each other and burn it all down."

That was the picture which my boss' friend in law enforcement painted for us -- and he told him, seriously, to arm himself to the teeth immediately, and to be prepared to shoot scores of people who, singly or in groups, would try to burglarize or set fire to his home, willing to injure or kill him in the process. "Just pretend you're in Kosovo."

And he added: if you're at work at the time, or summoned to work to help protect the workplace from arson or looting, don't BE there -- or at the very least, if you ARE there, don't put up a fight when you face the crazed, rapacious mob. Retreat -- think about saving your OWN life, because there's NO HOPE of defending yourself against the mob if you represent --or even seem to represent-- "security," law enforcement, or "authority." "The police will NOT assist you," said this local law enforcement official. It's "every man for himself" -- and that attitude will be a matter of OFFICIAL POLICY.

We're already aware of the MILITARY's estimate is of the potential dangers of Y2K, we know from reading a recent AP item the FBI's view, and now, "off the record," you've just heard how LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT sees it...

An "apocalypse" of MASS-HYSTERIA and VIOLENT MOB RULE is expected on Dec 31, 1999, and federal, state, and local governments are PREPARING for that...

And SOME preparations involve "washing their hands" and LETTING it happen!

AFTER which, there goes Posse Comitatus, and here comes Martial Law, and the suspension of all Constitutional freedoms and rights for an indefinite duration ...

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

-Caveat Lector-

Of COURSE that's what a cop would think. That's SO indicitive of cop mentality. It's also unmitigated hogwash.

I live in San Francisco. Let me tell you what REALLY happens when there's a major natural disaster here. In 1989 we had a quake, the Loma Prieta. It wasn't the Big One, but it did kill people, set fires and put out the lights. I was at my girlfriend's place in North Beach, the heart of the party zone when it struck. Lights there were out for four days.

With very, very few very isolated exceptions there was no violence and no looting. There were no riots. What actually happened was people pulled together to help each other. The cops, as usual, were virtually superfluous. Firemen, on the other hand acted with great skill and courage and with more than ample spontaneous, voluntary assistance from civilians, myself included.

Over in Oakland the now famous Cypress Expressway ran through one of the Bay Area's, and America's, most "poverty-stricken ethnic ghettos." When it collapsed it killed many and trapped more. Right next to the worst part of the disaster is a truly grim and dismal looking housing project. Since it looks so much like a prison camp and sits next to an old Nabisco factory with a prominant sign and huge fences, my friends and I who rode by fairly often took to calling it "Stalag Nabisco." Some of the poorest people in the state live there. When the lights went out and the Expressway collapsed they did not run amok. They did not loot. They immediately ran to the rescue of the trapped motorists. Many crawled on their bellies through pools of spilled gasoline under teetering hundred ton slabs of concrete to rescue people who, in normal circumstances, never gave them a second thought as they drove past the "stalag" on their way home to the suburbs. That's human nature. That's how human beings are. Uncontrolled hatred and violence is cop nature. That's how cops are.

The real danger of Y2K isn't people. It's embedded chips in nuclear reactors. Anything else we can work around. If the grid flickers a little, so what? That's everyday life in the Third World. If supply chain disruptions cause shortages, so what? That's everyday life in the Third World. But if one, just one, nuke melts down, that's all she wrote. So stop being distracted by this stupid, racist propaganda and get on the phone and DEMAND that your local nuke be taken offline. Your life may depend on it. All our lives may depend on it.

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In a message dated 99-11-01 13:47:29 EST, nessie@SFBG.COM writes:

> With very, very few very isolated exceptions there was no violence and > no looting. There were no riots. What actually happened was people > pulled together to help each other.

Yep, that's how I remember it, in the ethnically diverse Mission District.

As soon as we determined that there were no fires, gas leaks or people in need of rescue in my immediate vicinity we hopped on the bike and headed towards the biggest piller of smoke we could see, the famous Marina fire. By the time we got there the firemen had more help than they needed and sent us on our way. We went to Haight St. to check on Bound Together Books and my friends who live in the back. The people on the block had discovered a gas leak across the street from BT and had formed lines of linked arms at either end of the block to prevent anybody from stumbling ionto the gas cloud with a flame or a spark till somebody found the valve and shut it off. We joined in, releaving a guy who really, really wanted to run accross the park to see if his building on Fulton St. was still standing. Eventually a couple fireman showed up, but by then a civilian had found the valve and shut it off. I was low on gasoline and dark was falling and, from where we stood at least, everything looked under control. So went back to her place and resumed screwing. (No "earth moved" jokes, please) We later went out to catch up on news. A strip joint two blocks away, Big Al's, had a generator and a TV which they made available to the public for free. Only then did we hear about the Bay Bridge and the Cypress.

A lot of the people in the neighborhood spent the night and the next day in Washington Square Park, huddled tightly together in the middle in case an after shock knocked down more buildings. This was significant because there is some racial tension in the neighborhood, mostly between the Italians and the Chinese. It's more of a turf thing than a race thing, and it's fairly polite, but there it is. The other primary ethnic groups in North Beach are Yuppies and, thanks to some legacy cheap hotels, Bohemians. Generally, I had noticed while hanging out around there, these four groups pretty much ignored each other on the street. But when the earth shook and those lights went out, everybody was instantly brothers and sisters, or at least second cousins. Neighbors who had never spoken in their lives were hugging each other and sharing their food.

The Chinese liquer store owner downstairs was afraid of being looted to the extent that he had the chain on his front door and was selling through the ajar space. Given SF's history of racist pogroms against the Chinese, I can't blame him for being cautious. It proved unnecessary. There was an orderly line of people stocking up on booze, candles and snacks. The cops came by and told them to quit, which they did till he rounded the corner. Despite the spike in liquer sales, the next couple days was the only time ever in my entire life that I have stood at Grant and Green and not seen a single drunk. Drink is what people DO on that block. They come for miles around to do it. Sometimes they get a little rowdy (usually on New Years) but when the lights were out everybody behaved very responsibly.

As long as no nuclear power plant melts and nobody starts shooting ICBMs at glitches on their radar screen, we'll muddle through Y2K. So will the rest of you. In some locations it could develop into a royal pain in the butt, maybe on the scale of the Kobe Quake, Hurricane Andrew or the Great Canadian Ice Storm. But TEOTWAWKI? Fat chance. TWAWKI has too much momentum.

But just in case, you oughta horde food, arm yourself and help your friends and neighbors develop contingency plans. Better safe than sorry. Do NOT trust the government to take care of you. If they do take care of you, so much the better. But don't bet your life on it.

Really, you oughta be armed, provisioned and organized anyway, 'cuz who knows what might happen. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Be aware. Be prepared.

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Have you ever actually BEEN in a riot? I have. Several. That ain't how it happens.

Check out my page for details:

Please don't confuse Americans with those murderous jerks on TV. They're fictional characters. We're not really like that. If you believe the TV you can't help but think that the entire country is awash in cop killing, psychopath rapists and the only reason they haven't actually broken into your house and killed you and raped your TV already is because some young, good looking cop somewhere was willing to bend the rules a little. Don't believe it. It's propaganda, mass mind control at its worst. Reality differs emmensely.

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Date: Sat, 06 Nov 1999 10:10:00 -0800 Subject: Re(2): {Y2K} Y2K riots From: (nessie) To:

> I'm not very confident about using a different sort of disaster as a > too close a guide to what might happen at Y2K.

It's the best analogy I could come up with with which I have had personal experience. We don't have hurricanes or ice storms here. We do have riots. Of course there will be scattered rioting on Y2K. It's New Years. There's always rioting on New Years. It's a traditional part of the celebration. It's a way working people blow of steam, like raising hell when the home team wins.

But the main thing different about this particular New Years is not the potential for infrastructure breakdown (nukes excepted), but the potential for terrorist acts by religious fanatics, racist paramilitaries and the governments themselves. Government agents provocateur already in place within these two milieus are a serious potential threat. But the wackos themselves are a far greater threat. I'll be genuinely surprised if nobody tries anything.

And there will certainly be economic repercussions in the ensuing months. Some will echo for years. There will most probably be some very severe, though localized, hazmat catastrophes. We'll cope. It'll be a pain in the butt. It'll kill some people. But we'll survive. More important, we'll learn from the experience. For the first time in history the folly of centralization will be rammed down the whole world's throat at once. Humanity will take note. We WILL learn. We'll be the better for it.

Civilization won't break down. The world wont turn into Mad Max land over night. There is too much social momentum and to much human nature in the way. We are a cooperative species. Almost every human being spends almost all of every day peacefully cooperating of our own free will. It has been this way since long before we evolved into modern human beings. It's Nature's way. See by Kropotkin for details.

Just in case though, it's best to be prepared for anything. 'Cuz who knows? And it's not like I've never been wrong before.

-- alan (, November 14, 1999.

Do any of you San Franciscans remember the White Night riots...? I was in town then (1979), so I do. A bunch of young, white, gay guys trashed City Hall because they were angry about a court verdict. Did a lot of damange, burned cars, you get the idea.

People riot when they're angry. They get rowdy when they're drunk or on drugs. They loot when they know they can get away with it. Put all of those factors together, like it's New Years Eve & the lights go out...

BTW, there WAS plenty of crime following the Loma Prieta quake. The city was VERY careful about keeping it hushed-up, just as they still carefully down-play each & every cable car accident (almost no coverage in any SF paper, regardless of damage).

Spin, Spin, Spin, it just never ends...

-- an ex (san@fran.ciscan), November 15, 1999.

no responses? hmmmm...

-- alan (, November 15, 1999.


By christ, finally do I read a post which seems like it came from a human being with some damn feet on the earth. So much adrenaline-driven stuff on this forum... the truth is no one *does* know, and the percieved real estate of *knowing* just what to expect not only artificially pumps the spouter's "sphere of influence" stock shares, his or her own experience of safety and calm is enhanced. Even if it is the worst picture of doom! The chaos of uncertainty, I'm finding in all these thousands of messages, comes in far behind either pole of Zoom or Doom. The soft underbelly of being a vulnerable citizen facing such a threshold as we face is vastly underrated.

Thank you for reminding us of the strong biological default of caring and community which I (too) personally see as underlying this outer scrambling to cover our asses. Hell, I'm excited! I have a front row seat. I have been in mass hysteria before and found myself protected and befriended. I have had violent malcontents actually disarm * themselves* in my presence.

I tell you: it's a new day, and I welcome it. I'm ready to meet some new people.

-- Mark Clark (, November 15, 1999.

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