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A Qwest for the Truth

A recent appellate court filing by a former Qwest Communications CEO reveals something that shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone who has been extensively following the NSA spying scandal.
A former Qwest Communications International executive, appealing a conviction for insider trading, has alleged that the government withdrew opportunities for contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars after Qwest refused to participate in an unidentified National Security Agency program that the company thought might be illegal.

Now this isn't the part that's interesting. It is well documented how the Bushies choose to handle those who refuse to go along with their dictates. Just ask any of the US Attorneys who received their walking papers. No, the bigger issue is when the NSA approached Qwest to browbeat them ask for their assistance.
Former chief executive Joseph P. Nacchio, convicted in April of 19 counts of insider trading, said the NSA approached Qwest more than six months before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, according to court documents unsealed in Denver this week.

Details about the alleged NSA program have been redacted from the documents, but Nacchio’s lawyer said last year that the NSA had approached the company about participating in a warrantless surveillance program to gather information about Americans’ phone records.

This isn't the first time that such allegations have been made. And given it is being used as a defense to stave off a prison sentence, its validity remains suspect. But one would think, given all we have come to learn about how the Bushies operate, that it would at minimum warrant an inquiry from Congress. Especially since they are currently considering granting immunity to those telecoms who did choose to cooperate with the Bush administration. President Bush has been adamant that he will not sign any bill that does not contain an immunity clause. Perhaps it is time Congress ask an appropriate question: if they did nothing wrong, why do you they need immunity?

In a larger context, if these allegations prove to be true, it will only illustrate once and for all that the claim that "9/11 change everything" was mere bunk. Indeed, a far more apt characterization would that "Election 2000 changed everything". Because with that first act of being installed by like-minded ideologues in the judiciary, it has been evident that the Bushies have continued that legacy of utter disdain for every aspect of governance that could not be used to further their goals and agendas.

And if they were so averse to following the law from the start of their reign, who is to say they will abide by it at the end?

More from Meme. See also Steve Soto.

(Filed at State of the Day and All Spin Zone)

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