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Congressional Commitee Rips Yahoo Execs 293

Posted by kdawson
from the morals-of-a-corporation dept.
A number of readers sent word of the hearing by the US House Foreign Affairs Committee in which committee members raked two Yahoo execs over the coals. "While technologically and financially you are giants, morally you are pygmies," the committee chairman Tom Lantos, D-Calif., said angrily after hearing from Jerry Yang and Michael Callahan about Yahoo's actions that resulted in the arrest and imprisonment of a Chinese dissident. In 2004 Yahoo turned over information about journalist Shi Tao's online activities requested by Chinese authorities. In Feb. 2006, Yahoo's General Counsel Callahan testified that he had not known the nature of the investigation the authorities were conducting. He later learned that several employees of Yahoo China were aware at the time that the investigation involved "state secrets," but Callahan did not go back to Congress to amend his testimony. Committee members were withering in their disdain for Yahoo's refusal to help Shi Tao's family after his arrest.
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Congressional Commitee Rips Yahoo Execs

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  • PKB (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mastershake_phd (1050150) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:20PM (#21260791) Homepage
    Isn't that like the pot calling the kettle black?
    • Re:PKB (Score:4, Funny)

      by Elemenope (905108) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:24PM (#21260835)
      No, it's more like the howitzer calling the derringer a gun.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by iminplaya (723125)
        Yeah, the little bitty Derringer. What could it possibly do [uiuc.edu]?
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Elemenope (905108)

          Very nicely done. But think that only illustrates the point; both can kill, just one's death toll is much larger than the other, even though individual victims of the latter may be more notable.

          Likewise, Congress passes laws that affect literally millions of people, many in a negative way, and yet here we have a congressional committee upbraiding a company for ruining one person's life with their policy. It's not that Yahoo!'s actions are qualitatively less repugnant than Congress's...it's just that the

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Yes, but it's so much easier, never mind more comfortable, to lambast the flaws in others than recognize and correct your own failings.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by rtyhurst (460717)
        From the article:

        "Shi Tao was sent to jail for 10 years for engaging in pro-democracy efforts deemed subversive after Yahoo turned over information about his online activities requested by Chinese authorities."

        Guy gets 10 years for *having an opinion*?

        What happened to "YRO"?

        What's the Chinese government going to do if Yahoo! doesn't roll over and rat out Shi Tao?

        Put the website in jail?

        What a bunch of belly-crawling cowards...

        There's no excuse for this.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by calebt3 (1098475)
          Step 1. Yahoo refuses to cooperate w/Chinese authorities.
          Step 2. Yahoo get blocked by the Great Firewall of China Step 3. ???? Step 4. No Profit from advertisements.
          • Re:PKB (Score:5, Insightful)

            by smilindog2000 (907665) <bill@billrocks.org> on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @09:17PM (#21261929) Homepage
            Step 1: Congress makes it illegal to filter political content, or for any US corporation to aid in political sensorship'
            Step 2: The bad guys close down their firewalls, but the US, EU, Canada, AU, etc, grow in prosperity and freedom through freedom of speech on the Internet
            Step 3: China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran all try to emulate our success, and tear down their firewalls.

            The importance of freedom of political speech on the Internet can't be understated. It's the future of the world at stake.
    • by Associate (317603)
      Shouldn't there be a Pot/Kettle tag?
    • Re:PKB (Score:4, Insightful)

      by pclminion (145572) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:53PM (#21261157)
      Enough of the fucking "pot-kettle-black" shit. Do the failings of the US Congress make the actions of Yahoo any less reprehensible? No? Then shut up.
      • Re:PKB (Score:5, Insightful)

        by joebagodonuts (561066) <cmkrnl@NoSPAM.gmail.com> on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @08:35PM (#21261607) Homepage Journal
        Oh please. This isn't about the reprehensibility of Yahoo's actions. This is about Congress being hypocritical. Neither party gives a hoot about the journalist getting jailed.

        The irony here is that Yahoo's simply following the leadership that our elected leaders demonstrate. If our leaders have a problem with what's going on, they might want to look at how they are leading this nation, rather than hold disingenuous hearings.

        So - the kettle/pot comments are appropriate considering the subject matter. And before you go much further condemning Yahoo - Check your belongings. How much of it says "Made in China"?

      • Re:PKB (Score:5, Insightful)

        by StevisF (218566) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @08:47PM (#21261699)
        I don't really expect any level of ethical behavior from corporations. Corporations have two goals: increase the price of their stock and produce dividends for investors. To that end, they may accidentially or perhaps even intentionally act ethically, but it's certainly not to be expected. I do, however, expect the government to provide sufficient oversight of corporations.

        I think what people are expressing is that the Congress should not expect ethical behavior from corporations when their actions have been ethically questionable and it's their job to regulate the corporations. Clearly in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, congress has allowed privacy and human rights to fall by the wayside worldwide.
        • Well said.
        • I don't really expect any level of ethical behavior from corporations ...

          ... then you will never observe any if you don't demand it.
        • I don't really expect any level of ethical behavior from corporations. Corporations have two goals: increase the price of their stock and produce dividends for investors. To that end, they may accidentially or perhaps even intentionally act ethically, but it's certainly not to be expected.

          Isn't that a problem?

          I do, however, expect the government to provide sufficient oversight of corporations.

          Government oversight only goes so far and is often corrupted. In fact, it invites corruption. Shouldn't corporati

      • by Lumpy (12016)
        Do the failings of the US Congress make the actions of Yahoo any less reprehensible?

        yes, yes they do by a long way.

        Every single senator and representative should be completely ashamed of themselves for the rampant crap they pull every single day in Washington DC.

        Even just the damage done tot he USA with the patriot act covers it. I'm not even talking about the other stuff that makes the rest of the world gasp in disgust at us.
    • by Kingrames (858416)
      It's perfectly okay for the pot to call the kettle black on a children's show talking about colors, or the lack of them. There are plenty of situations where hypocrisy is hardly detestable.

      When someone calls you a dirty, no good bastard, the last thing to say in your defense is "well, you're almost as bad."
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by gregraven (574513)
      If Tom Lantos' morals turned to gasoline, there wouldn't be enough of it to power a piss-ant's go-cart around the inside of a Cheerio.
    • Re:PKB (Score:5, Interesting)

      by The Analog Kid (565327) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @08:45PM (#21261693)
      Tu quoque [wikipedia.org]

      Just because a congressman might be hypocritical, doesn't make their arguments any less valid.
      • Re:PKB (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Elemenope (905108) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @09:40PM (#21262103)

        Actually, it can. This is not a logical syllogism situated in the abstract we are talking about, but rather an issue in which Congress no less than Yahoo! (and probably much more) has a role to play. If a Congressman upbraids a corporation for undertaking acts that are morally repugnant, did that Congressman also introduce or vote for legislation that would make such a stance a practical option for that corporation? Did congress rattle sabers over protecting Yahoo! China's executives if they were to defy Chinese law to aid the dissident? Threaten trade sanctions? Place restrictions on how and in what manner Yahoo!'s international subsidiaries can aid foreign governments? Any of those would have aided Yahoo! in making such a choice palatable to its board of directors and its shareholders, and given cover if Yahoo!'s executives wished to do the "moral" thing.

        If Congress had in its power the substantive means to encourage Yahoo! to do the moral thing or at least give it legal cover to do so, and failed to so act, Yahoo! can indeed say "you too, asshole" and not be staking out a morally vacuous position. It might also help if Congress wasn't green-lighting retroactive immunity for similar crimes domestically; one might argue from that that Congress has shown it doesn't so much care about the rule of law when it comes to corporations complicit with government orders.

        ad hominem tu quoque is not automatically a fallacious argument if the agent so identified is culpable in the very same matter (and not a merely equivalent matter) as the subject.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Naviztirf (856598)
      I don't know about you, but my pot's green and my kettle is chrome...
  • Hmm (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fiannaFailMan (702447) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:21PM (#21260799) Journal
    I wonder will these politicians be as robust in their denunciation of China's human rights record the next time a Chinese trade delegation pays them a visit.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Indeed .. isn't Yahoo's only obligation to increase shareholder value within the constraints of the laws of the countries in which it does business ?

      Yahoo is not required to apply any 'moral' standards - whose morals should they use ? ... Yahoo management's morals ? ... shareholder's morals ? ... politician's morals ? ...

      • Re:Hmm (Score:5, Interesting)

        by MightyMartian (840721) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:43PM (#21261049) Journal
        So if that's the beginning and end of corporate responsibility, then clearly IBM was quite right to help the Nazis exterminate Jews, Gypsies and other undesirables. Good to know that corporations doing business abroad shouldn't be held to any level of basic responsibility for human rights and human dignity, and should be nothing more than money making machines directing funds for any ol' human abusing shit hole to Western investors.

        Bring on the blood diamonds! Who the fuck cares who gets abused! Money is the only thing worth consideration.
        • by merreborn (853723)

          So if that's the beginning and end of corporate responsibility, then clearly IBM was quite right to help the Nazis exterminate Jews, Gypsies and other undesirables

          When did congress call IBM out on that one? Where was the public outcry? Obviously, the resulting boycotts (if any) failed.

          If anything, the IBM situation just goes to show that historically, Americans *don't* care about corporations' cooperation with oppressive governments. If they do, they certainly haven't shown it.

      • by timeOday (582209)
        You raise a valid issue. If Yahoo's actions in China did not violate any US laws, then clearly we need to change our laws. We can't control the actions of companies all over the world, but we can certainly decide who may incorporate and conduct business here at home.
        • Re:Hmm (Score:4, Insightful)

          by kithrup (778358) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @08:15PM (#21261391)

          So we should make it illegal for Yahoo! to do in China what we make it illegal for them to not do here?

          While I agree that the Chinese government is very much not nice, the same Congress that is chastising -- and threatening punishment -- Yahoo! executives is the same Congress that allowed damned near any government employee to demand the same information about any Yahoo! customer, in the United States, without a warrant, and prohibiting Yahoo! from telling anyone about it.

          Every government in the world may operate by "Do what we say, not what we do," but it's still sickening to hear someone complaining about how awful it was that a Chinese citizen was imprisoned and tortured, yet know that that same someone has refused to do anything to stop American citizens from being imprisoned and tortured.

          Human rights are for everyone, not just for foreigners.

      • Re:Hmm (Score:5, Interesting)

        by metlin (258108) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @08:47PM (#21261707) Journal
        How about upholding basic human rights [un.org] as put forward in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights [wikipedia.org] charter of the UN?

        Would that work for you, Mr. Philosopher, because you seem more interested in the moral relativism of something rather than the fact that it violates some fundamental precepts of human dignity?
        • Re:Hmm (Score:5, Insightful)

          by lelitsch (31136) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @09:51PM (#21262193)
          OK, given that China is a communist dictatorship, wouldn't it be great if you and the US Congress would get cracking on:

          Article 5. [Gitmo, Abu Ghraib, and the highest percentage of people in prison and on death row except for China]

                      No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

          Article 8. [Gitmo]

                      Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted him by the constitution or by law.

          Article 9. [Gitmo]

                      No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.

          Article 10. [Gitmo]

                      Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him.

          Article 12. [Warrantless wire tapping, and the nice comments about email we just heard from the FBI]

                      No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.

          Article 13. [No, you don't have a right to a passport in the US]

                      (2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.

          Article 21. [at least 2 million convicted felons are prohibited from voting, even after they finish their sentence]

                      (1) Everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives.

          Now I am not implying that the US--the country I chose to live in--is even close to China/North Korea/etc in oppression, but what happened to REPUBLICAN values?

          I've spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don't know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind it was a tall proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, wind-swept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace, a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity, and if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it and see it still.

          Ronald Reagan, Farewell Address to the Nation
          Oval Office
          January 11, 1989
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by metlin (258108)
            I'm not saying that some of the things that the US is doing is right, but that neither obliviates nor excuses China's actions.

            How do the sins of this country in any way have a bearing on respecting basic human rights elsewhere?
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by TheoMurpse (729043)
            Technically speaking the UDHR is a non-binding document and therefore doesn't really mean much. But I'm of the mind that the UDHR is one of the most important documents that mankind has ever produced. Now if we could only get countries to follow it (my own included).
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by GoofyBoy (44399)
        >isn't Yahoo's only obligation to increase shareholder value within the constraints of the laws of the countries in which it does business ?

        Even if you take this extreme, then Yahoo! still did the wrong action.

        This whole hearing is bad for Yahoo!; weak management who didn't have the full story on something this big, bad publicity in non-China far-east Asia, bad publicity in the tech community around the world, potential new legal regulations in their home country, management has to spend time on this who
      • by hedwards (940851)
        The issue of morality here, is really an issue of should yahoo have gone into a country known to repress political dissent. Once they got there, there was really very little choice in the matter beyond leaving.

        Like it or not, a corporation ultimately has to play by the rules of the countries in which it does business. Which is really why the question is why Yahoo felt the need to go into a country which it should have realized would require it to help fight with dissidents.

        In the long run, this will likely
      • by sjames (1099)

        Yahoo is not required to apply any 'moral' standards - whose morals should they use ? ... Yahoo management's morals ? ... shareholder's morals ? ... politician's morals ? ...

        Legal fictions aside, Yahoo is a composite of the people running it. No person anywhere at any time is EVER excused from ethical behaviour for any reason PERIOD.

        While opinions about appropriate morals and ethics do vary between people and there is genuine room for debate, there is no excuse for applying none at all.

        Multinational

    • Re:Hmm (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:26PM (#21260855)
      And, why aren't they yelling at AT&T for providing information to the Executive branch on the online activities of US citizens without a warrant? Is this not exactly the same thing as what Yahoo! is being lambasted for, except Yahoo! was *following* the law, and AT&T (and others) were *breaking* it?
      • Re:Hmm (Score:5, Interesting)

        by iminplaya (723125) <iminplaya.gmail@com> on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @08:23PM (#21261481) Journal
        Is this not exactly the same thing as what Yahoo! is being lambasted for, except Yahoo! was *following* the law, and AT&T (and others) were *breaking* it?

        It's quite simple really. If you're "with us", you're not breaking the law(when the president does it, it's not illegal). If you're "against us", you are.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by kcbrown (7426)

        And, why aren't they yelling at AT&T for providing information to the Executive branch on the online activities of US citizens without a warrant? Is this not exactly the same thing as what Yahoo! is being lambasted for, except Yahoo! was *following* the law, and AT&T (and others) were *breaking* it?

        Nobody here seems to really get it yet. Time for me to explain.

        All the vitriol, the accusations, the namecalling, etc. on the part of Congress add up to...nothing. Nada. Zilch. Not a damned th

    • by javelinco (652113)
      Great point! I wish we didn't already know the answer.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:26PM (#21260851)
    Yahoo's actions that resulted in the arrest and imprisonment of a Chinese dissident.

    Yahoo complied with a request from the government of a country that is on friendly terms with the US government for an investigation that involved "state secrets".

    Since the US government is taking the position that you have no privacy in your email, ever, and they can read it anytime without getting a warrant, let alone for "National Security" investigations, it's a bit ridiculous to expect US companies to have stricter standards in other countries.

    Note that I'm not saying Yahoo is innocent, just that the congresscritters are being hypocritical.
    • by rhombic (140326) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:33PM (#21260945)
      Shi Tao should be thankful he was a "potential dissident" in China rather than being a "potential terrorist" in the US; a finite (10yr) jail sentence versus an indefinite sentence & waterboarding.

      • by javelinco (652113)
        I'd say he should be thankful that he didn't get "disappeared," which is the usual punishment in China for political dissidents. Is the next comparison going to be "well, I'd rather be a jew in 1940's Germany then a terrorist in today's United States! I mean, waterboarding! Dang!" Valid and carefully measured statements about the wrongness of what our government is doing here is going to get a HELL of lot more traction, longterm, then overwrought and trumped up B.S. like this.
  • What happens in China, stays in China?
  • by WasterDave (20047) <davep AT zedkep DOT com> on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:27PM (#21260863)
    Right, so Yahoo are bad for grassing up the online activities of a Chinese dissident to their government, but AT&T are good for spying on Americans for their government. This, presumably, is because the US government has a squeaky clean human rights record.

    Aha. OK. You can put me on your list now.

    Dave
    • There's no list. I'd know.

      (See my sig for details. In use since 1998)
    • by javelinco (652113)
      Are you going to eat both the apple AND the orange? Can you tell which is which? There's no doubt that there have been human rights issues with pretty much every government on the planet, and the U.S. government ABSOLUTELY isn't exempt. However, do you understand what it does with your credibility when you don't just compare them with China's, but actually attempt to make them equivalent?
    • by Atario (673917)

      Right, so Yahoo are bad for grassing up the online activities of a Chinese dissident to their government, but AT&T are good for spying on Americans for their government.
      It may interest you to know that there are differing factions within the US. On of those factions condemn both Yahoo! and AT&T.

      P.S. "Grassing up"??
    • by Lumpy (12016)
      This, presumably, is because the US government has a squeaky clean human rights record.

      This is a true statement. American Indians were not recognized as humans until after the genocide and medical experiments we performed on them. Same for the Slaves, and the stories from WW-II of the internment camps we had for the Japanese Americans were made up nazi lies!

      Oh, also we dont torture people, it's called enhanced interrogation.
  • With their net worth, I doubt if they're the slightest bit concerned about being called any names under the sun.

    For a politican to call them "moral pygmies" must've been hard to keep a straight face and not burst out laughing.

    pathetic

  • Good ol' Tom Lantos (Score:5, Informative)

    by seaturnip (1068078) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:32PM (#21260935)
    From Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]:

    During a 1996 Congressional inquiry into the "Filegate" scandal, Rep. Lantos told witness Craig Livingstone that "with an infinitely more distinguished public record than yours, Admiral Boorda committed suicide when he may have committed a minor mistake." Boorda, the Chief of Naval Operations, had recently taken his own life after his right to wear Combat V decorations had been questioned. Lantos was criticized by some (including fellow Congressman Joe Scarborough) who interpreted the remark as a suggestion that Livingstone too should kill himself.

    On May 3, 2000, Lantos was involved in an automobile accident while driving on Capitol Hill. Lantos drove over a young boy's foot and then failed to stop his vehicle. He was later fined over the incident for inattentive driving.

    In June 2007, Lantos called former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder a political prostitute.

    In October 2007, Lantos insulted Dutch parliament members, while discussing the War on Terrorism by stating that the Netherlands had to help the United States, because they liberated them in the Second World War, whilst adding that the upheaval over Guantanamo in Europe was bigger than over Auschwitz at the time.

  • by tsstahl (812393) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:33PM (#21260949)
    but wouldn't they expect Yahoo! U.S. to rollover if presented for an information request on the basis of "national security"?

    Yahoo! China has to follow the laws of that country, just as we expect Yahoo! U.S. to do so.

    Maybe the U.S. Government should issue Letters of Marque to multi-national corporations...

    I don't for a second condone what Yahoo! did on moral grounds. However, legally they acted as expected.
    • by vertinox (846076)
      Yahoo! China has to follow the laws of that country, just as we expect Yahoo! U.S. to do so.

      What if the law in the US says you cannot follow the law in China?

      There are plenty of laws that US citizens are supposed to follow while overseas even though the activity may be quite legal in the country they are dealing with. Mostly tax and sedition laws... But I suppose if they really wanted to, US congress could pass a law to outlaw doing business with people who don't respect human rights or democracy. Oh wait..
      • by trolltalk.com (1108067) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @07:55PM (#21261179) Homepage Journal

        "What if the law in the US says you cannot follow the law in China?"

        ... and what if China then passes a law saying you cannot follow US law?

        Sovereignty means the country establishes the rules within their boundaries. If the US doesn't like it, they can always go to war with China. It will be the quickest war ever - China immediately dumps their vast US currency holdings on the open market, the US dollar becomes (even more) worthless within 1 minute due to programmed trading, etc.

        China and Japan (and pretty much the rest of the world) are already looking to divest themselves of their reserves of US dollars, since Barneke has made it clear that he will destroy the dollar's value in a stupid attempt to delay the consequences of the collapsed housing bubble as long as possible, which will only make it worse when the time of reconning arrives,

        The USD is no longer a "reserve currency". This has broad implications for the US' ability to "project force", and its loss of superpower status.

        • by vertinox (846076)
          Sovereignty means the country establishes the rules within their boundaries. If the US doesn't like it, they can always go to war with China.

          I agree with you, but it doesn't jive with the current way the Fed deals with foreign businesses. Do you remember when they arrested CEOs of foreign gambling sites whose servers were overseas and legal in the nations they operated in?

          Same could be said about what is happening here. Of course they aren't going to go to war with China or even bring it up with Chinese lea
          • Do you remember when they arrested CEOs of foreign gambling sites whose servers were overseas and legal in the nations they operated in?

            That one was a little different because (to my knowledge) all those CEOs were American citizens who got busted when they came back to US soil.

        • by metlin (258108)

          China and Japan (and pretty much the rest of the world) are already looking to divest themselves of their reserves of US dollars,

          Really? Tell me when that happens, please. I mean, Warren Buffet has been saying that he's been bearish on the USD for ages, too, but guess what? The USD has gone through ups and downs and it has almost always come back up on top.

          And btw, if China stops pegging their currency artificially against the USD, it would just as soon kill *their* economy as it would ours. I mean, hey,

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            Last stats I saw were net ouflows of $69 billion in one month. That's a lot of investment "pulling up stakes."

            If push comes to shove, why should China not use all the levers it has - including the "dump the dollar" nuke option - if the US keeps acting stupid wrt either currency or politics?

            BTW - the US economy has had real double-digit inflation for the last 5 years. Taking the three things that people actually spend money on all the time - food, energy, and mortgages - out of the index is just as bad

    • "Yahoo! China has to follow the laws of that country, just as we expect Yahoo! U.S. to do so."

      This seems quite simple to me: if a foreign company can't simultaneously abide by both its native country's laws and its host country's laws, then it should not be allowed to conduct business in the foreign country. Obviously our government is far too corrupt to enforce this.
  • were morally and ethically upstanding
  • But, it's ok to rake through the private email of US citizens WITHOUT a warrant. I think the haggle over warrants is just a ruse, one to MAKE us think that the government (various agencies, that is) are OBEYING the law.
  • The use of the word pygmies may turn out to be ill advised. Bring ethnic characters into conversation as an insult is flat out asking for it. I suspect the pygmy population in the United States is rather low, but it probably doesn't matter. In fact if I was Yahoo I might even arrange to quietly cause a stink about it.
  • Lantos's voting record:

    http://projects.washingtonpost.com/congress/members/l000090/ [washingtonpost.com]

    a strong supporter of the war in Iraq and one of George Bush's allies on the Democratic side, facilitating the war in Iraq, authorizing the use of force by the president in Iraq.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Lantos [wikipedia.org]

    Boy, getting lectured by this guy on morality... those poor Yahoo execs. It must have been hard not to burst out laughing.

  • Make him any less correct?

    Or for that matter, does your opinion of the US Govt make the oppressive Chinese government any better?

    Cripes, it's like you're all a bunch of Michael Moore clones or something. US=bad, so everything else = good?
  • Please, Yahoo!, step aside with your feeble attempts to please one of your host countries. We have more important wars to wage, and may indeed want to take out those pesky Chinese. So you moral pygmies, out of our war errr our way, for we have important wars errr good deeds to wage.

    Ignore the homeless, the ghetto, the pollution, the drug addicts, the crime, the Wal-mart, the blind political correctness, the perversion of religion and patriotism, the secret detention camps and the suburban blight on your way
  • What were the options for Yahoo employees? Aren't they binded by China laws when they are in China?
    From TFA:
    "Callahan has since acknowledged that Yahoo officials had received a subpoena-like document"
  • In Feb. 2006, Yahoo's General Counsel Callahan testified that he had not known the nature of the investigation the authorities were conducting. He later learned that several employees of Yahoo China were aware at the time that the investigation involved "state secrets," but Callahan did not go back to Congress to amend his testimony.

    But Lantos dismissed their explanation, saying state secrets investigations in China are commonly recognized as frequently targeting dissidents.

    Interesting that they just couldnt make the connection between "state secrets" and dissident prosecution when the evidence was all around them and well known. I wonder if any violations in that respect got trumped by The Almighty Stockholder(not to be confused with mutual fund holders). Nothing like cash to overlook your violation of "state secrets" law.

    This illustrates one more case for trade regulations so that this problem stays solved.

  • Secret Gnomes (Score:4, Insightful)

    by headkase (533448) on Tuesday November 06, 2007 @09:13PM (#21261897)
    The better the state is established, the fainter is humanity. To make the individual uncomfortable, that is my task. -- Nietzsche

    I love Slashdots almost prescient ability to provide a fortune that bears on the topic. The US is going into the toilet, Bush's war needs to be paid for and that money is going to be coming from US' citizens children for quite some time to come. The government of the US exists within a moral vacuum, nobody asks if something is "right" they just ask if its "legal". From the Patriot Act denying first ammendment rights (you can't tell anyone - even your lawyer or a judge - if you've been served under that act effectively cutting due process out of the loop) to what is torture, waterboarding. I think they should all be lined up against a wall and shot. This would be satisfying but would not likely result in any improvements so something else must be done. The only thing I can think of that has any hope of leading us out of the quagmire is demanding full transparency out of government. So, no "secret" subpeonas, no "secret" detentions, no "secret" trials, no "secret" interrogation techniques, no secrets because thats where evil hides.

    Fuck Bush. I think he's leading a great nation into ruin.
  • The congress did nothing at all to punish the perps who conquered China in the late 1940s. They'd prefer to scold Yahoo execs than to actually go so far as to wag a finger at the Red Dynasty.

    -jcr

"Life, loathe it or ignore it, you can't like it." -- Marvin the paranoid android

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