As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Monday, March 17, 2008


Joseph Nacchio was the CEO of Qwest Communications, and seven months before 9-11 (let me repeat, BEFORE 9-11), he and his company were asked to assist the US government in providing access to their communications networks without a warrant. Of all the telecoms, Nacchio and Qwest were the only ones to refuse. The government consequently pulled a bunch of their top-secret contracts and generally made it impossible for Qwest to do business. The stock dropped precipitously, and later federal prosecutors arrested Nacchio for insider trading, for having sold a significant amount of his holdings before the stock tanked. He claimed that he was actually trying to raise capital to exercise options and buy more stock, as he expected the government contracts to be renewed. This all went to trial and Nacchio was convicted last year.

But today, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the conviction, and ordered a new trial with a new judge, as the old one excluded evidence from an expert witness that would have validated Nacchio's claims. In a new trial, even more information about the Bush Administration's efforts to immediately conduct massive spying on American citizens upon the moment they entered office will come to light. The goal was total information awareness, an enormous drift net of data that could be used to any of a thousand pernicious ends. Among the evidence that could be provided are those secret contracts and communications on why they were cancelled, and when.

This is why you don't give blanket amnesty to lawsuits where the truth about illegal spying and surveillance could emerge.

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