Commentary the real crisis : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Commentary Week of January 24, 2000

The real crises Portland Business Journal The Y2K crisis has come and, apparently, gone. This space will not be devoted to the question of whether too much money was spent or too many articles, books, Web sites, lectures, pamphlets, CD-ROMs and clever headlines were created in the name of Y2K.

Rather, let us consider some other, much more concrete issues that our states and our nation should address with equal fervor. We must admit that we don't really know how much was spent on Y2K problems; estimates for our federal government run about $100 billion, and each state spent a lot, too.

If only we, as states and a nation, could earmark half those amounts today for the battles against hunger, illiteracy, racism and environmental degradation.

However, when it comes to expenditures for new ways to address such clear and obvious social ills, we have to wrangle endlessly over whether the money should be spent, how it should be spent and how much should be spent.

Why does our society work itself into a panic over something like computer glitches, while studiously ignoring underfunded public schools and overcrowded homeless shelters? What does it take to bring the people of this country together on an issue involving human dignity?

What Y2K reveals about our society is that we are, collectively, motivated by selfishness and fear, not by a desire to create a healthier culture.

-- Martin Thompson (, January 29, 2000


This is a nitwit editorial. As a business professor, I can tell you that the vast majority of business media never got y2k. Fortunately, most Fortune 500 CEOs and CIOs did. If not, our economy would be grinding to a halt. And I guarantee that we would have had a lot MORE to worry about, and would have a lot LESS money for public schools etc etc.

-- Bud Hamilton (, January 29, 2000.

This a great editorial. I'm glad that so far there has been little suffering caused by Y2K. I'm ready for an end to the greed, arrogance, feelings of entitlement on the one hand and feelings of dependency, neediness, and entitlement on the other hand, that characterize so much of civilized people and businesses. I was hoping Y2K would provide, as painlessly as possible, "the end of the world as we know it." Like freedom, independence, and preparedness inbstead. Suggestions along this line are welcome at

-- Bill Clift (, January 31, 2000.

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