Y2K Bug Finally Appears in Shady Paris Politics - run for your bunkers!

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Y2K Bug Finally Appears — in Shady Paris Politics
PARIS — The celebrated Y2K bug, which was supposed to devastate computers around the world but mostly failed to materialise, has become a belated but improbable factor in backroom Paris political intrigues.

Supporters of Paris Mayor Jean Tiberi, who is already deeply mired in corruption probes, blamed the famous bug when rivals pointed out that a party voting roll he had presented contained 1,500 names too many.

Much to the merriment of the French press, a Tiberi aide withdrew the disputed list and blamed the discrepancy on a Y2K-related "breakdown in the computer system."

Like most other countries, France was barely touched by the bug that experts had warned might bring down computer systems on January 1. No such breakdowns have been reported since.

Tiberi, who wants to run for mayor again next year despite his low popularity, has suggested his Rally for the Republic (RPR) Gaullist party hold a "primary" to pick its candidate for next year's municipal election.

The voters would be card-carrying members of the RPR Paris chapter, which he heads and had 12,200 members on its rolls.

But RPR national headquarters, which has made no secret it wants to dump Tiberi for a more attractive candidate, had only 10,700 names on its list of Paris members.

Extra names were of people who had died, moved away, or left the party before 1998, the national headquarters said in turning down his request for a primary.

-- Norm (back@inbusiness.com), March 12, 2000

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