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Yahoo! Accused of Lying to Congress about Chinese Journalist 122

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the summon-the-yang dept.
verybadradio writes "The House Committee on Foreign Affairs is calling Yahoo! chief executive Jerry Yang to a hearing on 6 November to explain why the company lied to Congress in early 2006 about its knowledge of the investigation into Chinese journalist Shi Tao."
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Yahoo! Accused of Lying to Congress about Chinese Journalist

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  • The answer to that question will basically be an obfuscated version of "because it would have sounded bad."
  • by Evets (629327) * on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @08:29AM (#21009357) Homepage Journal
    All Yang has to do is say "I was misinformed" and "I was not directly involved". This is a non-story.
    • by Mikkeles (698461)
      You mean that he should continue lying?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by faloi (738831)
      "I did not have sexual relations with that government!"
    • I don't recall that meeting. I don't remember the specifics. I don't have any recollection of that.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by CRWeaks23 (980922)

      All Yang has to do is say "I was misinformed" and "I was not directly involved".
      Woah, that's giving up way too much information.

      "I do not recall" will suffice, with a "I cannot recollect" thrown in once in a while for good measure.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by DarthGregor (905084)
      I wish there was a "+1 sad but true" ...
    • by ragefan (267937)

      All Yang has to do is say "I was misinformed" and "I was not directly involved". This is a non-story.
      Or Yahoo could use the Telco defense [slashdot.org]: "The Bush Administration told us it was illegal to disclose that to Congress."
    • by elrous0 (869638) *
      As weak as this pansy Congress is, he could probably stand up, tell them "Fuck off," moon them, and walk out. And they wouldn't do a damn thing about it except maybe hold another hearing that everyone would also ignore.
      • by tedrlord (95173)
        I'm sure they'd do something about it. They'd get together to pass a non-binding resolution formally condemning his actions as impolite. Of course, it would fail by 2 votes short of the 60% needed to keep the Republicans from filibustering, and they'd have to take it off the table until next year.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      "This is a non-story."

      You must be kidding! Lying to Congress under oath. You are just suggesting that a different lie would have gotten Yang off the hook. You are suggesting a safer lie for him. But that core issue here is what does it mean to "be under oath" esp to Congress who is trying to get at the "Truth". That is what you swear and oath to, to tell the "Truth". If we have no way to get at the truth, or have a way to compel a person to tell the truth, then we in deep trouble. Right now it is fines and
      • by Evets (629327) *
        I don't necessarily disagree that lying to congress should be a story. I was just pointing out the sad fact that in the face of contrary facts, our political leaders have shown us repeatedly over the last what - 20 years - that "I don't recall" saves the liar from any repercussions whatsoever.
  • pot.kettle.black (Score:5, Insightful)

    by night_flyer (453866) on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @08:31AM (#21009383) Homepage
    Yahoo was doing what was required to do business in China & considering how the US Gov't has bent over to facilitate China, they have no room to talk.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      True, but that excuse is so tired. No one *has* to do business with China. Choosing profit over human rights is forced on no one.
      • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

        by steelfood (895457)
        Yeah, but with torture in Gitmo, warrentless wiretapping, etc. that argument doesn't fly either.

        Preaching one thing and then turning around and doing the opposite is called hypocricy. Preaching one thing and ignoring it when your friend is doing the opposite is just as bad, if not worse.

        If AT&T can get immunity for the same violations committed within the US on US citizens, why not Yahoo?

        I'm not saying you're wrong; all I'm saying is, the public and hence the ruling class in the United States needs to c
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by nomadic (141991)
          I'm not saying you're wrong; all I'm saying is, the public and hence the ruling class in the United States needs to clean up their own house before they start pointing out how dirty everyone else's is.

          By that logic until we have stamped out police corruption 100%, no police officer anywhere should arrest anyone.
          • by mOdQuArK! (87332)
            Well, let's just say that it's a LOT less effective to complain about human right violations in another country when you've got a list of human rights violations that your own country is violating being splashed across the pages of just about every newspaper and web site.

            Although I have no doubts that kind of crap has gone on throughout history, at least in the past it was kept secret enough & at a low enough level that a lot of Americans could deny that it was happening.

            Now it's so blatant that some pe
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Xonstantine (947614)
          A couple of hundred people forcibly detained at gitmo hardly compares with what goes on in China on a daily basis. We're talking about a country that doesn't like people who stretch in public, so they execute them and then harvest their organs. And that's just one of a myriad of evils the Chinese regime commits.
          • by gardyloo (512791)
            Sometimes it's hard to tell where mere hyperbole transitions into unadulterated mornoic hatred.
            • by gardyloo (512791)
              Heaven knows I'd definitely ding someone else on this, so I might as well do it now...

              mornoic
              Heh.
              • by Basehart (633304)
                Nice one. I didn't even notice anything was amiss until you did the right thing and busted your ass. IMHO it was a lot easier to check these things before submitting when they had the Preview button in a more obvious place.
            • Are you talking about Gitmo hyperbole or hyperbole about the Chinese?
          • by 1u3hr (530656)
            country that doesn't like people who stretch in public, so they execute them and then harvest their organs.

            Mods, this is not "insightful". It's insanely exaggerated.

            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by Xonstantine (947614)

              Mods, this is not "insightful". It's insanely exaggerated.

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persecution_of_Falun_Gong#Allegations_of_organ_harvesting [wikipedia.org]

              Although involuntary organ donations are illegal under Chinese law, critics say Beijing does not enforce the policy. In 2001, a Chinese doctor applying for political asylum revealed that he had removed organs from executed prisoners for the transplant market under the auspices of the People's Liberation Army. He claimed that he had operated to remove skin and corneas from executed criminals, and that other doctors so

              • by 1u3hr (530656)
                I didn't say the falun Gong weren't persecuted.

                We're talking about a country that doesn't like people who stretch in public, so they execute them and then harvest their organs

                The reason I said this was an exaggeration:

                The Chinese government is NOT persecuting them because they "stretch in public", but because they are a cult, like Scientology, with millions of members with a secretive Messianic leader. And they remember the Boxer Rebellion. It really is a threat to the Communist Party.

                You imply th

              • by HiThere (15173)
                And Larry Niven predicted that the one's doing this would be criminals, not governments.

                Organleggers is still a good word, with the right definition. After all, the government doesn't acknowledge it, and has signed treaties forbidding it, so those doing it must be criminals.

          • by hondo77 (324058)
            So if the US is not quite as evil as China, that's okay?
            • by Xonstantine (947614) on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @11:45AM (#21012349)

              So if the US is not quite as evil as China, that's okay?
              Pretty much. Governments, countries, states, bureaucracies, people are not perfect nor are they perfectable. All states, even little old Andorra, do evil things from time to time. Very few institutionalize evil on the scale of depravity similar to Nazi Germany or Stalin's Russia. Communist China is one of those states that has done so, and continues to do so.

              People don't like that 200 or so Jihadis are being held in Gitmo without a trial. Yeah, I get it. It still pales in significant to the prison factory archipelago that is being run in China. And while libs like to pat themselves on the back every time they call Bush a fascist, China really is an emerging fascist state. The idea that we can't criticize China because we aren't perfect ourselves is stupid. Really, really stupid.
              • by hondo77 (324058)

                People don't like that 200 or so Jihadis are being held in Gitmo without a trial. Yeah, I get it. It still pales in significant to the prison factory archipelago that is being run in China.

                I know I'm an idealist but I really don't like the "Yeah, we're committing acts of evil but they're not as evil as China," argument. I like the bar set a bit higher.

                • I know I'm an idealist but I really don't like the "Yeah, we're committing acts of evil but they're not as evil as China," argument. I like the bar set a bit higher.

                  You might be an idealist when it comes to stuff like that, but I'm afraid your down here in purgatory with the rest of us when it comes to argumentive etiquette. The problem is, no one was defending the US by point out the faults of China. Rather, people were defending China by pointing out the faults of the United States. To which I replied, our faults, as significant and serious though they are, pale in comparison to China's, and by no means absolve China from criticism and in of themselves. If you w

                  • by hondo77 (324058)

                    If you want to complain about the US...

                    I'd rather not...which is kinda the point.

                    Ah, remember the good ol' days, when complaining about the US government was usually about high taxes or corruption and not about the finer points of what constitutes torture?

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by LWATCDR (28044)
          "If AT&T can get immunity for the same violations committed within the US on US citizens, why not Yahoo?"
          Huh???????
          When has anyone in the US gone to jail for publishing a blog critical of the US government?
          You are lacking a sense of proportion. I am not saying that the US is perfect but give me a break.
          I suggest you go to genocide watch and look at the number of deaths attributed to the Chinese government. I would like to see an investigation of what is going on at Gitmo but you do know that prisoners
          • by mdozturk (973065)
            Really? What about the guy in University of Florida that got tazered and thrown in jail?
            • by Khaed (544779)
              He was asked to leave an event by event security. He did not. He resisted. I don't particularly like tasers, but the guy was given every opportunity to comply.

              When you are asked by the security of the place you happen to be to leave, you leave. You don't have a "right" to be just anywhere, especially if you're being disruptive.

              Also, more was made of the story than it was because he happened to be slamming a politician and so everyone jumped on the "free speech!" bandwagon. But he was only non-compliant
            • by LWATCDR (28044)
              Okay then let's see. I said, "When has anyone in the US gone to jail for publishing a blog critical of the US government?"
              Was he tazered and thrown in jail for publishing a blog? Or was it for disturbing the peace?
              Freedom of speech doesn't mean that you can go into any location of your choosing and start screaming your head off about anything you like. From what I understand he was asked to leave by security and refused. When they tried to remove him he resisted physically.
              Again a sense of perspective is i
          • by jrp2 (458093)
            "There are international agreements on the treatment of prisoners of war and those should apply"

            That would be nice, but we do not adhere to the Geneva Conventions on POWs as we have defined these folks as "Enemy Combatants". They have very limited access to the Red Cross, amongst many other issues. IANAL, but I believe if they are not POWs, they are criminals, and should be afforded legal counsel and access to the court system. Creating this new category is a sham and embarrassing to me (and many others)
            • by LWATCDR (28044)
              "Your point on government criticism is valid, we are pretty free in that regard (this post is a great example). But freedom of speech is just one right "guaranteed" in our constitution."
              But that is the only thing that counts in this case. Sure other ideas of "freedom" are up for debate. When does freedom of speech become disturbing the peace. When do one groups freedom to protest infringes on another group freedom of speech. But to claim that the US shouldn't complain about China's actions is misleading an
            • That would be nice, but we do not adhere to the Geneva Conventions on POWs as we have defined these folks as "Enemy Combatants".

              In fact, we do adhere to the Geneva Conventions on POW's.

              However, we are not signatory to the extra protocols to the Geneva Convention that define extra categories of "soldier". For instance, the parts we're signatory to require that a "soldier" wear a uniform or some other distinguishing mark visible from a distance. Otherwise, he doesn't count as a soldier, and is not covered

          • by Intron (870560)
            "When has anyone in the US gone to jail for ... [being]... critical of the US government?"

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elsebeth_Baumgartner [wikipedia.org]
            http://www.sharkonline.org/?P=0000000069 [sharkonline.org]
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sherman_Austin [wikipedia.org]
            http://victimsoflaw.net/Elena1.htm [victimsoflaw.net]
            • by LWATCDR (28044)
              Okay lets see some truth..
              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elsebeth_Baumgartner [wikipedia.org]

              "Ottawa County prosecutor Mark Mulligan (whom Baumgartner had run against in the prosecutorial election) filed charges of making false statements against Baumgartner after she began accusing officials of the Island Rocket ferry line of smuggling illegal drugs. Kevin Baxter was a part owner of Island Rocket. A jury found Baumgartner guilty of making false statements and Judge John Adkins ordered a psychological evaluation of Baumgartn
              • by Intron (870560)
                I apologize. No-one has ever been jailed for criticizing the government.

                Elsebeth Baumgartner was jailed for making false statements about the government as determined by the government.

                Steve Hindi attempted to record what the government is doing. Obviously can't have that. They probably arrest TV news anchors covering press conferences all the time.

                Sherman Martin Austin was charged with putting terrorist information on a website, why is he even on this list?

                Elena Sassower interrupted a senator. Obviously
                • by LWATCDR (28044)
                  "Elsebeth Baumgartner was jailed for making false statements about the government as determined by the government."
                  Dude read it. She was a nut case. Yes you can be arrested for making groundless false statements about people.

                  "Steve Hindi attempted to record what the government is doing. Obviously can't have that. They probably arrest TV news anchors covering press conferences all the time."
                  Again selective reality raises its ugly head.
                  The law in Illinois states that you can not record ANYBODY with out their
                  • by Intron (870560)
                    Who gets arrested for making false statements?
                    Who gets arrested for recording people without their consent?
                    Who gets arrested for interrupting people?
                    Which article of the constitution grants congress more rights to free speech than I get?

                    If you want to believe that those laws were being fairly enforced, and not just used to arrest troublemakers, then its not me with the selective reality.

                    "Yes you can take actions while PROTESTING the government that will get you arrested. Those actions will land you in jail.
                    • by LWATCDR (28044)
                      "Who gets arrested for interrupting people?"
                      Okay go to any concert and "interupt" it. You will be asked to leave and if you don't you will be arrested.
                      Try it at a play.
                      Or any conference.
                      You will be asked to leave or arrested.
                      "Who gets arrested for recording people without their consent?"
                      Umm... Just about anyone. Most states have laws on recording a conversation without permission or at least notification.
                      Why do you think when you call tech support you are informed that "this call may be recorded".
                      "Who gets
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by jav1231 (539129)
          Enough with the torture in Gitmo. This myth was blown away by Democrats themselves when they sent several Dem lawmakers down there and returned to confirm this was not true. We're supposed to be more intelligent here as geeks. Enough with the "if we keep saying it, then it's true" mentality. I don't agree with everything this administration does but I'm not willing to perpetuate non-truths to show others I'm on their "team." This crap is tearing the country apart.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by jrp2 (458093)
            "Enough with the torture in Gitmo. This myth was blown away by Democrats themselves when they sent several Dem lawmakers down there and returned to confirm this was not true."

            Yeah, I can just picture the walk-through by the congressman. "OK everyone, ignore the dudes in the suits, just keep doing what we always do". Like they would actually be doing this stuff when there are congresscritters watching!

            That said, most of the torture allegations did not occur at Gitmo. They occurred at secret CIA and milita
            • by jav1231 (539129)
              At Gitmo the opposite has occurred. Torture was dumbed down to include being made to stand for long periods of time.
              I can't say anything about the CIA jails but I wouldn't doubt your assertion.
      • by TubeSteak (669689)

        True, but that excuse is so tired. No one *has* to do business with China. Choosing profit over human rights is forced on no one.
        Is the crime that Yahoo officials lied or that they helped violate someone's human rights?
      • I don't think we should be expecting companies to boycott business based on human rights records. These people have enough hardships without companies refusing to provide them services based on the actions of their unrepresentative government. It's not fair on the companies or the people.
      • No one *has* to do business with China. Choosing profit over human rights is forced on no one.

        But Yahoo didn't choose to violate someone else's rights; the Chinese government did. Yahoo may have known what the Chinese government would do, but that doesn't make Yahoo responsible for the government's actions. If a woman knows that a rapist is hanging out in a dark alley, but she walks into the dark alley anyway, is she responsible for the rape that follows?

        By the way, Yahoo is not only making profits; it
        • by 1u3hr (530656)
          Yahoo may have known what the Chinese government would do, but that doesn't make Yahoo responsible for the government's actions. If a woman knows that a rapist is hanging out in a dark alley,...

          Consider that the reporter knew that a Chinese company would hand him over on a platter, so he thought he could trust an American company to protect his privacy (and his liberty, in this case). But like many people who have trusted America to live up to its ideals, he was screwed.

          • by MightyMartian (840721) on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @11:07AM (#21011751) Journal
            Just remember. Humans are expendable. The only thing that counts in America is profits. People, particularly in other parts of the world, exist solely so that American shareholders can get big bucks. Corporations are the only things that should ever be considered, and if they sell out people abroad, or hell, release phone records without warrant to agents of the US government, well, they should be allowed to. It's what Jesus wants. Jesus loves profits, hates anyone who thinks profits should take a distant second place to human rights. Jesus is all about the money, and America is all about Jesus. Only atheists and baby-eating secularists give a shit about Chinese dissidents. Jesus hates the Chinese, except when they bring lots of money to Jesus's favorite entities in the entire Universe; corporations.

            God Bless Corporate America, And Fuck Everything Else.
            • While the above is marked Funny, this isn't far fetched. China is our cheap (almost free) labor arms. As much as I hate to admit. US should go to hell to keep the communists happy. God forbid if we had to pay $7 US an hour per person for labor, everything around us will be unaffordable instantly.
        • by nelsonal (549144)
          We do assign some blame (not the same level but some) to the guy who procures the GHB for the serial rapist, though.
    • by Moraelin (679338) on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @09:04AM (#21009801) Journal
      I'm sorry, but lying under oath isn't exactly a legal requirement.

      You'll notice that they're not accusing him of human rights violations, they're accusing him of lying to congress. If I read it right, in a sworn testimony too.

      So let's put _that_ defense away already. They're not condemning Yahoo for doing business with China. Period.

      Plus,

      1. it cuts both ways. If he's supposed to comply with Chinese laws and regulations to do business in China, then by the same logic he's supposed to comply with US rules and regulations to do business in the US. That includes such concepts as, basically, that you're not supposed to lie in a sworn testimony.

      2. "But <insert other arsehole> is doing it too!" is a defense that was considered laughable even in kindergarten. If Johnny was hitting other kids, it wasn't considered an invitation to do the same even in kindergarten. So it's equally laughable to see it used to defend all around immoral business practices.

      3. Especially when it's based on a very warped notion of what it means "doing it too." I don't think the US government officially aided China in hunting down its disidents. There's a big difference between (A) turning a blind eye to someone else doing something wrong, when you can't prevent it anyway, and (B) actively aiding them in doing it. To give an example, it's the difference between, (A) ignoring a bank robbery in progress, since I can't dodge bullets anyway, (B) actually driving the escape car for the robbers. Neither is "knight in shiny armour", but it takes a very disfunctional view of the world to put an equals sign between the two. Neither is white, but they're very different shades of grey.

      So to cut it even shorter: just because someone else isn't 100% pure paladin-in-shiny-armour defender-of-all-oppressed, it's not a blank-cheque excuse to be an outright arsehole.

      4. I'm sorry, but "cost of doing business" isn't a moral wildcard excuse. You don't have a sacred human right to make a profit at all cost, and it doesn't supersede all other moral and legal expectations.

      Sure, we're glad for you if you do manage to make a profit. Kudos and more power to you, and we might even admire you for it.

      But if you're an arsehole in the name of doing business and making a profit... well, you're still an arsehole.
      • by Rogerborg (306625)

        Why would he have been under oath?

        Even if he were, what are this bunch of pussies going to do about it? Actually, that may very well be his response.

        • by khallow (566160)

          Why would he have been under oath?

          Standard procedure for testifying in front of Congress or a congressional committee.

          Even if he were, what are this bunch of pussies going to do about it? Actually, that may very well be his response.

          Perjury is a criminal offense. Congress is notoriously lenient on perjury, but that defense would probably put him in jail.

          • by Rogerborg (306625)
            No, we're talking about this Congress, and this set of US Attorneys. What, exactly, are they going to do about it?
            • by khallow (566160)
              As I mentioned before, that can put someone in jail. The point I'm trying to make is that blatantly flouting a prior felony perjury while you sit in front of a portion of Congress, no matter how cowardly they normally are, is liable to put you in jail. The passive-aggressive approach is optimal for dealing with Congress. You don't recall your words or actions, but you are sure they're being deliberately taken out of context by your political enemies. That sort of thing.
    • by nomadic (141991)
      considering how the US Gov't has bent over to facilitate China, they have no room to talk.

      Why does everyone here always talk about the U.S. government like it's one monolithic entity? The executive branch (both this one and the previous one, admittedly) have turned a blind eye to China's activities. However, there are sizeable factions in Congress (in both parties, though for different reasons) who have always willing to criticize China.
    • by jsse (254124)

      Yahoo was doing what was required to do business in China & considering how the US Gov't has bent over to facilitate China, they have no room to talk.

      You may be right, but the general public in China does not seem to understand Yahoo!'s difficulties.

      Before the case, Jerry Yang is a role model of entrepreneur among youngsters in China

      After the case, nobody would want to talk about him. No more press on his successful stories, no more study or discussion in college on his way of success. No one wants to write book about success of Yahoo! since.

      We just don't want to mention anything about him.

      Yahoo! was just having bad luck? You bet. Shi Tao is def

    • by Kingrames (858416)
      There are quite a few things that the US is (supposed to be) able to do that businesses are not (supposed to be) able to do.
  • Send a letter saying "We'd tell you, but, we don't want to make ourselves look any worse".
  • Why does the US government care what Yahoo told the chinese government about some employee?
    • by svendsen (1029716)
      because the Chinese govt then used that info to throw someone in jail who was doing nothing more then trying to fight for their basic human rights?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Opportunist (166417)
        The US government has a very selective view of when human rights become something important. I hope they'll soon hand out some kind of guideline when it's ok to ignore them and when not, so far it's kinda confusing.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by svendsen (1029716)
          It's not confusing at all. When you violate human rights and have oil we want we will eventually use that as the excuse when we invade your country. If you violate human rights and have no oil you are fine. However if you violate human rights and it gets too public and someone important complains AND it might cost money/re-election well then we have to do something.

          Simple!
          • by Billosaur (927319) *

            You forgot: "If you are one of our largest trading partners and hold title to a large portion of our Federal debt, it's ok to violate human rights unless someone in the media/blogosphere makes a big enough stink about it."

            We don't want to take on China. Right now our economy is run off their cheap goods, even though they are tainted with lead and other noxious substances. We take stabs at them every so often, just to make it look good on the world stage (Dalai Lama getting Congressional Gold Medal [cnn.com]), but w

      • Again why does the American government care? If it cared about the end result it would impose sanctions on China rather then punish companies for complying with local law. The American government has done nothing to stop the Chinese government, so this committee is a non-starter.
        • by svendsen (1029716)
          I have no clue on how corporate law/rules work so that being said. Isn't yahoo a US company (HQ in the US) and is subject to US laws no matter where they operate? Bad analogy time...if I as a US citizen go to a country where having sex with children is legal, I can still be prosecuted here in the US for having sex with children. I'm guessing it is probably different for corporations but as I said before I have no idea.

          So does anyone know if a US based corporation has to follow UA laws no matter where
          • If that was the case Chinese workers would be paid minimum wage by American companies. They're not, so I think you've got your wires crossed (I've never heard of a pedophile being arrested and charged in America solely on what he did in another country).
            • I've never heard of a pedophile being arrested and charged in America solely on what he did in another country.

              Congress covered that a few years ago, as seen here, [usdoj.gov] second paragraph from the bottom.

  • GLaDOS: HAve I lied to you? In this room.
    • More fitting

      Jerry Yang: I will stop enhancing the truth in 5,4,3,2,*static-burst*
      • Congress' response: "As a required questioning protocol, we are required to inform you that after your testimony's completion, there will be cake."
  • by Reality Master 201 (578873) on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @08:53AM (#21009675) Journal
    That's certain to result in a strongly worded letter with ABSOLUTELY NO consequences at all.

    At least, if one is to gauge by Congress' reaction to the widespread stonewalling by every part of the Bush administration and it's corporate political allies.
  • Because it aided them in increasing their finances.

    Now is this committee a bunch of commies or is it going to realize this is a perfectly valid reason? After all, an American company operating in China in the first place is reasonable because of the pursuit of money.
  • by pikine (771084) on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @08:56AM (#21009713) Journal

    Just say, "the Chinese NSA sent us a letter forbidding us to disclose the details of this investigation under the Chinese PATRIOT ACT."

    I know China is such a serious human rights offender, but that doesn't legitimize the U.S. for being the same. Furthermore, what makes the House think that it would make sense to bully a company that is just trying to run a business under the pressure between two governments?

    • Yahoo's successes are due to the liberal society in which it was founded. That it so despises that liberal society that it will gleefully sell out those principles in other countries is a sign of the deep immorality that pervades American corporate culture.
      • by pikine (771084)
        Being founded in a liberal society has nothing to do with an online company's success. Look at Baidu for example. They're founded in an oppressive society, and their success in China far surpasses Google, Yahoo, even Microsoft. If your argument for their "deep immorality" has to do with the betrayal of some sort of idealism that brought them up, it doesn't apply here. Sorry.
  • Ingrates!! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) <obsessivemathsfreakNO@SPAMeircom.net> on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @09:01AM (#21009767) Homepage Journal
    I mean, don't these congressmen know which side their bread is buttered and honeyed on?

    First Brazilians arrest CEOs, and now American congressmen no less are getting indignant over a few harmless omissions. Governments are getting too big for their boots I say. No respect for their capitalist masters. Time for a good old fashioned recession. That'll put the fear of God into 'em and get 'em back into line quick-sharp!

    Failing that, a fascist coup is always an option. We can pull it off during the American Idol finale. I doubt the plebs will even notice! Then we'll be in a better position to match the Chinese economy GDP and journalist lynching growth rates!
    • With the changes to the bankruptcy laws and balloon mortgages blowing up left and right, the US is headed for serfdom anyway.

      I, for one, welcome our debt-holding overlords.
  • If I write to my dear ones in China, I just avoid mentioning sensitive topics in my E-mail (even Gmail). If I want to tell it anyway, I tell it over a safer medium.
  • Isn't 'Lying to Congress' a felony?

    Which do you think will happen, if convicted.
    1) A slap on the wrist.
    2) Bush will pardon.
    3) ACLU will get him off.
  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Wednesday October 17, 2007 @09:40AM (#21010289) Homepage Journal
    Yahoo's answer will be "because lying to Congress only got me this annoying reinvitation to your toothless American committee, but telling the truth would have cost us $millions in business with the deadly serious Chinese mafia government".

    Which their toothless committee already knows.
    • Ignoring the general lawmaking powers of Congress that can affect Yahoo (ie. net neutrality), lying to Congress is punishable by prison time.

      It isn't that common, but the Capitol actually has a jail cell that could be used. Today, though, the person is referred to the DA who is required to convene a grand jury.

      In 1983 an EPA official was sentenced to 6 months in jail, 5 years probation and a $10,000 fine.

      Short history of NY Times articles here. [nytimes.com]

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Doc Ruby (173196)
        If a cell sits in a forest but no one is locked in it, is it really "punishment"?

        As you pointed out with that sparse history, punishable is not punished. The rate of punishment for such lying is probably under a thousandth of a percent of the rate of the lying.

        Hell, Congress didn't even file contempt charges, inherent or otherwise, against AG Gonzales, while he spent months, years, lying to Congress about matters of the utmost Constitutional (criminal) importance.

        Maybe "toothless" isn't quite the word. Mayb
    • by Shotgun (30919)
      Except "Yahoo" doesn't have an answer. Can't have an answer. A company doesn't speak.

      An executive chose to lie to Congress. Granted, they're a bunch of blowhards who are just trying to make a show for some constituency or another without actually doing anything, but blaming the digression on "Yahoo" is an attempt to diffuse the blame. There was exactly one person that lied to Congress (in this instance), and there is exactly one person that should be held in contempt.

      It's high time that we stop letting
  • ...and in other news, The Register just now notices that there's superfluous punctuation in Yahoo's name, and decides to make fun of it.

    Refreshingly original!
  • What? The House is actually holding a corporation responsible for its actions overseas?

    I think it should be pretty plainly clear by now that they don't give a shit about this sort of thing. (Blackwater had to start murdering crowds of people in cold blood before congress even paid any attention to its actions.)

    So the real question is.... what topic are they avoiding discussing right now? Have they run out of talking points for their usual debates over civil unions and abortion rights that they usually u
  • gets away with repeatedly lying to Congress, you can't really blame Yahoo for thinking they could get away with it too!

The sooner all the animals are extinct, the sooner we'll find their money. - Ed Bluestone

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