Thursday, 24 January 2013

Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt - FUD

These will be the main weapons deployed by the EU lovers to undermine the outers. The origin of this acronym lie in the marketing tactics of IBM in the 1964-1984 period to undermine those selling cheaper and better mainframe computers notably Gene Amdahl who left IBM to found Amdahl and compete with IBM.

I quote from a web source:

Defined by Gene Amdahl after he left IBM to found his own company: “FUD is the fear, uncertainty, and doubt that IBM sales people instill in the minds of potential customers who might be considering [Amdahl] products.” The idea, of course, was to persuade them to go with safe IBM gear rather than with competitors' equipment. This implicit coercion was traditionally accomplished by promising that Good Things would happen to people who stuck with IBM, but Dark Shadows loomed over the future of competitors' equipment or software. See IBM. After 1990 the term FUD was associated increasingly frequently withMicrosoft, and has become generalized to refer to any kind of disinformation used as a competitive weapon.

The alternative version was nobody ever got fired for buying IBM!

Sound familiar? Well these are exactly the scare tactics used by Branson and Sorrel to try and keep us in the EU, not of course for our benefit but for the benefit of their companies' profits and executive bonuses. This dodgy pair 15 years ago were urging us to join the Euro using the same FUD WPP and Virgin profit enhancing tactics and arguments. They were wrong then but it is only by getting both hands round their neck and squeezing will they ever admit they were wrong.

We are going to see a lot more of this tactic promoted assiduosly as ever by the BBC along with the fictitious 3 million jobs and 50% of UK exports that supposedly depend on our continuing as an EU province. Time for a Boston, Lincs tea party methinks.

So what happened to IBM the dominant IT company up to 1985? Well like our politicians they were looking in the wrong direction. There was a University drop out  kid called Gates who bought up the rights to a microcomputer operating system that he rebranded as MSDOS. IBM had built a microcomputer called the PC to kill off the Apple II built by Jobs and Wozniak in their garage. IBM had no interest in the PC other than an Apple killer and gave Gates a contract to develop his MSDOS operating system for their PC but unfortunately left all the MSDOS rights with Gates. The rest is history. Apple came close to extinction a couple of times but Microsoft, Gates company has never looked back and made Gates the richest man in the world and Warren Buffet's bridge partner.

There is a clear parallel with the EU. IBM was inward looking and obsessed with its mainframe models. They gave Gates the loaded gun and he killed them. True IBM exists today but its second division. Its the same with the EU. Obsessed with their Napoleonic dirigiste system, crazy social rights and labour legislation and market regulaytion  they cannot see what is happening in the Far East. They are killing innovation in Europe. China, India and closer to home Turkey will move in to fill the gap and the EU will find itself  an irrelevance on the world stage like the Hapsburg's Austro Hungarian empire. The Hapsburgs forgot nothing and learned nothing. The EU will be the Hapsburgs all over again. Deja vu as the frogs say.

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