Duh-2000: The First Annual Duh-2000 Awards...
The monthly contest for the stupidest thing said about the Year 2000 problem*

 

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duh2kaward.gif (3474 bytes)The First (And Probably Last*) Annual Duh-2000 Awards
(*since we assume by this time next year no one will really care)

John Koskinen

The Lifetime Achievement Award goes to US Y2k czar John Koskinen, for being nominated to this contest more times than any other single individual. Even though we haven't selected him as a monthly winner (yet), we feel the sheer volume of his work qualifies him for this award. Some samples:


John Koskinen
when asked how the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) was preparing for Y2K: "Well, we've been trying to get them to focus on this problem."
Try harder, John.  If only one agency of the Federal government is to have a plan for Y2k, one would think it should be FEMA, wouldn't one?  Quoted on Westergaard Year 2000 Federal Government is Botching Year 2000 Efforts by Jim Lord (who knows what he's talking about) September 21, 1998.

John Koskinen on the prospect of an accidental Y2k-inspired nuclear attack: "We have been assured that any actions taken are not all computerised. Every action – launching a missile, engaging in any military actions – requires human intervention, so that we are reasonably confident there will not be accidents in terms of systems automatically going off on their own".
Is it just us, or is anyone else bothered by the use of the phrase "reasonably confident" in the same sentence as "launching a missile?"  Quoted on AFR Net Services Clinton's tsar clears Games on Y2K hurdle October 28, 1998.

John Koskinen on his role: "Would we do better if I stood up tomorrow and said this is a national crisis?"
Uh, yep.  Quoted in Time, Why The Government's Machines Won't Make It, June 15, 1998

The award for Stupidest Effort to Politicize Y2k goes to Newt Gingrich, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. for his comment: "Year 2000 is total downside risk for Clinton and Gore ... If nothing goes wrong, they get no gain whatsoever. If [government computers] crash and burn, Mr. Information Superhighway has a real problem and will get a lot of heat."
Well, now there's a good reason to underfund the effort to keep the government from going toes up. Actually, there will probably be plenty of "heat" to go around. Quoted on TechWeek Gingrich’s take on Y2K August 24, 1998. Submitted by Lee McLamb.

The award for Stupidest Vendor Compliance Statement goes to: "The current release is year 2000 compliant, and the next release will be even more year 2000 compliant".
Anonymous vendor response to a Y2k compliance query.  Submitted by Kay Rozeboom.

And we decided not to give an award for Stupidest Journalism, since there were so many worthy contenders tied for the top spot...


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