Placing blame and the power of geeks

Placing blame and the power of geeks.

So it's becoming clear that the power outage started in Ohio – but they're not sure at this point exactly where, how and who is responsible.

A really interesting thing was said in this article, by a Michael Gent, head of the North American Electric Reliability Council.  In the ensuing moments of the massive outage, LOTS of data was being logged and “events were coming in so fast and furious that (some reports) … weren't even being logged in a timely way.”

Now I'm not sure how a system doesn't log events in a timely away – except to say – that the wrong time stamps were put on entries or that logs were stored or moved.  I guess – maybe – if humans are part of the logging process, but that seems pretty obtuse.

So let's just summarize.  This guy Gent is claiming it'll take weeks before they can ascertain exactly what happened.  It's probably all about who gets blamed, 'cause then THEY'RE up shit creek and their insurance premiums go through the roof, as it'll be THEIR insurance policy that gets sued when the inevitable lawsuits appear.  So everyone's in CYA mode, and one guys using the old “we gotta look at the logs” defence.

It's at these times that the nerds take over. They flex their muscles, tell everyone to stand back, they roll up their sleeves on their white lab coats and say “it's gonna take some time”.  They're the ones who have to interpret those logs, who get to find 'THE' log entry that points to the Homer Simpson responisble for taking down the Northeast.  'Cause you know that's who it is.  And that's what they're gonna find. A scapegoat.

Some guy, unproperly trained, with not enough authority, too scarred to make his own decisions, who panicked and did nothing, instead of isolating those errants power lines and…….. bam ….. it all came crashing down.

It was almost worth it – seeing Bush's face.  He knew that he couldn't blame it on terroists. He knew it showed that his focus on all the wrong things was being revealed.  This guy Bush doesn't have clue how fucked our country is, how endemic these problems are – saturated into an incompetent system – a system that can cause ALL SORTS of weird shit to happen – at a moment's notice.  So as he took the stage, pale white, mumbling we knew that this was just a pre-cursor of times ahead.  His house of cards was coming apart.

With every death in Iraq, it further unravels.  With each downtown of the market or power breakdown it becomes clear.  This old system of ours has had it.  And Bush is just trying to hide the facts, the truth.

The economy ain't going no where but down.  No amount of defence spending and deficit financing will releave us from this one.  It's gonna take REAL focus on internal issues – that's gonna solve our problems. Not starting wars and blaming terroists for all our problems.  [Marc's Voice]

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