Today, in Y2K committee meeting Sen. Bennett said "I have found in my two years on working on this (Y2K) issue that the more informed people become about Y2K the more frightened they become." He went on to tell how he and Koskinen meet more than weekly both of them "agonizing " about what and how to tell the people to prepare and not panic them..

-- Ann Fisher (, March 05, 1999


Wrong answer Senator.

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (, March 06, 1999.

On what network / source was this carried? I've got some major seminars upcoming. This may be a good tool to offset some of the "bump" coverage that was carried by CSPAN a couple of days ago.

By the way .. transcript or other authoritative source would be VERY appreciated.



-- Dan (, March 06, 1999.

It will be interesting to see if this quote will be mentioned in the mainstream media...

-- Tim (, March 06, 1999.

I too am interested in the source regarding this quote. Good question, Tim. Was one of the first questions that came to mind.

-- Faze the Nation (, March 06, 1999.

I agree with Bennett, Rob. The more I hear, the more frightened I get, the more supplies I stash away, the more secure I feel. I've gone from about a 3 to close to an 8 since I started researching the problem last July. (I was no more than a 4.5 when I hung around the North forums--and you know there ain't too many pollyannas over there!) However, the hoi polloi are going to have to hear about this sooner or later, and sooner is far preferable to later. I still think They, the powers-that-be, are trying to get as many ducks in a row as they can before they begin to reveal the true picture of Y2k.

I've been wondering lately if Bennett is very cleverly wording his remarks so that those of us who will act responsibly will read between the very wide lines and do what we can and must, whilst those who cannot or will not act responsibly will be left to the last. This pool of people consists of those who aren't able or willing to help themselves and will put up with waiting in long lines for bread and soup. Well, some of them will create a fuss but you know there'll be NG troops to keep order at the soup kitchens and evac shelters.

I'm glad I'm not in Bennett's shoes. I really feel for him.

-- Old Git (, March 06, 1999.

Just saw Senator Bennett on c-span (panel was on international y2k) ..... will air again at 1:45 AM MT....He admitted his dilemma was awareness vs panic. United Kingdom doing a good job of making its people aware. USA ?

-- rb (, March 06, 1999.

"He went on to tell how he and Koskinen meet more than weekly both of them "agonizing " about what and how to tell the people to prepare and not panic them...."

This is pathetic. They constantly contradict themselves; feed false information to the press; go back and contradict what they just contradicted in the press; and now we find out how much they're "agonizing" over how to tell people? Just WHEN are they planning to tell all? December 31, 1999?

Where's my Maalox...I need some Xanax....

-- Scarlett (, March 06, 1999.

rb .. it's 1:44 AM Eastern time... Just checked the schedule... CSPAN Senate Committee
International Problems in the Year 2000
Senate Special Cmte. Year 2000 Tech.Prob
Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC
ID : 121241
Length : 2 hr 23 min
01:44am to 04:07am ET
Warm up the recorders gang... this one may be a keeper.... Dan

-- Dan (, March 06, 1999.

See threads, for additional info ...

SENATE TESTIMONY: CIA Assesses Global Y2k Readiness (USIA, March 5, 1999) 000ZjV

SENATE TESTIMONY: State Department Reviews World Y2K Readiness (USIA, March 5, 1999) 000Zja

-- Diane J. Squire (, March 06, 1999.

Those who have RealAudio and do not have cable for CSPAN can go there for 1:40am EST via

-- Watchful (, March 06, 1999.

What happened??? Any reports????

-- Moore Dinty moore (, March 07, 1999.

Reports yet?

-- Greybear (, March 07, 1999.

For reports, follow Diane's links (you already know that is always a good first step; I'm just reminding you). Those links will get you at least to Barbara Williams-Bridgers' testimony and to Lawrence Gershwin's testimony, both of which seemed informative. Other informative testimony was presented by a gent from Gartners and one from Cap Gemini, and a little bit by two other consultants.


-- Jerry B (, March 07, 1999.

Miss Git;

<< The more I hear, the more frightened I get, the more supplies I stash away, the more secure I feel. I've gone from about a 3 to close to an 8 since I started researching the problem last July. >>

I was perhaps not clear in the short answer you referenced - my thoughts followed the exact trail you mention below, but did not included the crucial "the more I prepare (for the uncertainites I've found), the confident I become." However, that is the exact "leap of faith" or "Lack of faith (self confidence)" that Bennett is NOT creating with his own short answer.

Wha the Clinton administration fails utterly to understand is that they are creating the distrust and fear by trying to pretend to the citizens that there is nothing to fear. (They have of course, completely forgotten that 35-45% of the people will absolutely not believe what they say anyway - and most of who will believe them wil require federal help under most conditions of troubles - because they would not prepare in the first place.

What Bennett forgets is the power of confidence in a person's own preparations - if he used your phrasing - encouraging people to become self-reliant for a period of 3 days to two weeks (or pick a different period) then Churchill's "blood, sweat, toil, and tears" would resonate and increase internal faith and hope.

Instead - he says "the more I study, the more I fear" - thus actually encouraging people to avoid the subject, and implying that the people to fear are those who study the subject, those who know something about the subject, and those who are preparing their lives to help their families. THIS IS OPPOSITE of what he wants people to understand, but it is what they will learn from his words.

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (, March 07, 1999.

Robert, I find your position unlikely. Maybe it's just me. I doubt that people will back away from looking at this on the grounds that they might be frightened. People have tended to pay a great deal of attention to dangers when they believe those dangers are real.

In any case, learning about y2k is frightening for two primary reasons:

1) There really are a lot of date bugs out there.

2) There really is no consensus as to what this will mean.

It's that second aspect that makes things scariest. We have experience with natural disasters and economic downturns. But the scope of y2k is limitless, the side effects cannot be detailed, our information sources are not reliable, ignorance is vast and the problems might be devastating. And might not.

If you tell people that something really awful might happen in the next year, can't tell you exactly what it might be, can't even promise that it will happen at all, but it might be the worst thing anyone's ever been through, there's too much room for worry. So y'all go right out and prepare for *something*, and if you guess right you're in good shape, maybe.

It's a hard message to communicate.

-- Flint (, March 07, 1999.

If I recall correctly, Sen. Bennett made the "more informed" comment in reference to some numbers, presented by the Cap Gemini gent, which indicated that while USA companies were perceived to be ahead, on average, of European companies, the managements of the European companies expressed more confidence in the probablility of their success in Y2K remediation than the managementss of the USA companies.


-- Jerry B (, March 07, 1999.

I concur with Jerry. I appreciated Bennett's comment immediately, as he was pointing out that US companies by and large had been working on Y2K longer than European companies and the Euro companies were expressing far greater confidence. he was saying in effect that the deeper you get into Y2K work, the less confident you become.

Ignorance is bliss, unless you're ignoring a truck bearing down on you.

My sense is that awareness is definitely increasing and that people are quietly getting ready. Bennett's report and then this session re International readiness have added energy to the process. Given that chart that Marcoccio showed with the big ol' spike in problems expected in June, we should expect the last 6 months of 1999 to be chock full o' Y2K reality.

-- Mac (, March 08, 1999.

The few litmus tests that I use to guage awareness are all coming back positive.

One example, in the small (4000) town nearest me, I ran an add for 35 days last October seeking other to discuss Y2K and Preps. Got two calls. Last week one of the churches had something about Y2K on their billboard out front.

O agree with Old Git about not wanting to be in Bennets shoes.

Also argee withe Robert that the truth, now, would be infinitely better and in the long run save lives.

-- Greybear (, March 08, 1999.

If so, he should have said:

"The more things I learn about Y2K, the more I learn there are things to fear.

The more I prepare my family for potential Y2K troubles, the less I fear."

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (, March 08, 1999.

O.K. I've been waiting for someone else to bring this up. I thought it was most interesting when the guy from Cap Gemini displayed the numbers for "slippage". When it manifests itself, the failure rate will increase to 30%. It struck me he was talking about all the people who are making real headway. Then, later, when asked to round-table about the presentations, the guy from the Gartner Group reminded everyone about the "slippage" point and to remember its impact. Sounded a whole lot less rosy when applied to figures quoted that day. Still doesn't sound too good, folks.

-- margie mason (, March 08, 1999.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ