Holmes Report Blog

The Holmes Report blog focuses on news and issues of interest to public relations professionals. Our main site can be found at www.holmesreport.com.

Friday, May 12, 2006

The Telco Scandal Expands: Jack Cafferty of CNN: “We better hope nothing happens to Arlen Specter, the Republican head of the Judiciary Committee, because he might be all that's standing between us and a full blown dictatorship in this country. He's vowed to question these phone company executives about volunteering to provide the government with my telephone records and yours, and tens of millions of other Americans….

“Shortly after 9-11, AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth began providing the super secret NSA with information on phone calls of millions of our citizens, all part of the war on terror, President Bush says…. The President rushed out this morning in the wake of this front page story in USA Today and he declared the government's doing nothing wrong and all of this is just fine.“Is it? Is it legal? Then why did the Justice Department suddenly drop its investigation of the warrantless spying on citizens? Because the NSA said Justice Department lawyers didn't have the necessary security clearance to do the investigation. Read that sentence again. A secret government agency has told our Justice Department that it's not allowed to investigate it. And the Justice Department just says okay and drops the whole thing….“Does it concern you that your phone company may be voluntarily providing your phone records to the government without your knowledge or permission?" If it doesn't it sure as hell ought to.”

Liberal blog Think Progress has more on the potential legal liability of the phone companies that sold out their customers.

Many, many, editorials on this, including some from stalwart Bush apologists like the Washington Post and Chicago Tribune—I guess it has crossed over into the mainstream media now—although most focus on the dissembling of the administration rather than the perfidy of the companies involved.

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