Monday, June 07, 2004

Identity Theft

What an ordeal for my old friend Grant Gartrell. Suddenly he is in the middle of prophecy hysteria - attributed on websites and forums with predicting the cataclysmic impact of comets on the earth - beginning tomorrow.
Someone on the end-of-the-world bandwagon has found and used the retired physicist's credentials. It is true that Grant is an expert on comets. He did his thesis on the subject - a zillion years ago. It is also true that he is long retired and has not involved himself in that sphere for many years. He is now blueberry grower and, as he has always been, a passionate caver who lobbies for the protection of caves.
And suddenly there he is all over websites and forums. Except that it is not him. Someone has done a lot of homework about him and is using his credentials to generate panic about impending comet impact on earth. What is in it for the imposter? Why would someone go to all this trouble?

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