"Let him who is without sin cast the first stone!"
Great notion except my sins don't cost innocent people their lives or force citizens to pay thousands more in tax or alienate most of the civilized world or harm the environment or make inner city education problems worse or increase global religious division or polarize the electorate or lower the value of intelligence or block the investigation of 9/11...
...come to think of it, why IS the 9/11 commission such a problem for President Bush? After the recent shuttle disaster, NASA started investigating within 2 hours and had $40-50M budgeted for the investigation within 2 days. Bush absolutely REFUSED to investigate 9/11 until Congress mandated it. Then the stonewalling and extortion began. Relatives of the victims were asked to sign away their right to sue in exchange for a $250K payment. Now why would the government want to limit liability for private industry when they [allegedly] didn't even know who was to blame and thought [at the time] that it was bin Laden? Then Bush appoints Kissinger to the commission. Kissinger for crying out loud!! Possibly the worst government appointment in 100 years. Dick Cheney even got in the act; making furious phone calls from the start to limit what the 9/11 could do and who they could subpoena.
Actually, forget about that. Let's focus on the fact that the Bush administration did everything they could to limit what the 9/11 commission could do from day one and ignored multiple subpoenas until the Supreme Court threatened to intervene. Now, facts are trickling in. The stretch date for the 9/11 commission's final report was 5/27/2004, a date that everyone thought was ridiculously far away at the start. Guess what? Two weeks ago, the commission stated that this date could not be met and that they wouldn't even name a new final date. You don't suppose that the 2004 election had anything to do with this?
Luckily, Thomas Kean, the Republican chairman of the commission decided to step forward. Having lived through the most intense and twisted use of executive privilege since Nixon, Kean now says that 9/11 was completely preventable.
Furthermore, even right-wing pundits are alarmed at Bush's use of such privilege.
Just read this timeline if you want to see what the mainstream press noticed about 9/11. Luckily, someone else put in the effort to connect the dots.
This is a sad time in American history folks. Even though I didn't lose anyone close on 9/11 (my brother-in-law just moved back from Manhattan the month before), I still look back on this even every few months just to consider what happened and what could have happened. This isn't a partisan issue, this is one of the worst attacks on American soil in history and we MUST find out why and how it happened if we are to avoid a repeat. Bush is doing absolutely NOTHING to fix what was obviously broken and this is a shame. We have fought and are still fighting a war on two fronts over 9/11 and it's STILL not clear why and how it happened. Shouldn't we at least investigate the crime before spending $200B on fixing it? The wife of one of the victims says it best here:
If it is BLS, they certainly wouldn't pay anywhere near market value. The name AT&T is worth something, but try and quantify it. And don't forget that the name AT&T conjures up negative images as well as positive ones. The customer base has shrunk for years now. Revenue continues to shrink dramatically. Portability is a new shark in the waters. No doubt there are other reasons, as you state, but none come close to justifying a anything other than a substantially discounted price. For the CEO of BLS, the potential downside to his legacy far outweighs any potential upside. Buying AT&T to me would only occur at a fire sale price, and even that would be long shot in my mind.
BLS (Bell South) is the one interested in AT&T, not SBC. SBC is really only interested in playing politics,not running a comptetive business. There are a number of reasons BLS would be interested in T. One is the name, second is the business customer base of T, the third would be the cash flow. There are probably a ton more if I gave it a few more seconds of thought.
FWIW, SBC made a public announcement that they have no interest in AT&T. Makes sense to me - who wants to buy a stand alone long distance company. What could it possibly be worth? It has a steadily decreasing customer base AND steadily decreasing revenue per customer. Maybe buying AT&T wireless might be worth something, but remember that Craig McCaw built most of it years ago (before suckering AT&T into buying it) and it still consists mainly of his old infrastructure and outmoded TDMA technology. McCaw is no fool. And NOONE disputes that Armstrong is a bozo of legendary proportions.
I think 2004 will begin the long awaited consolidation within the service provider market. This will also spur the consolidation needed in the equipment market. As for AT&T, they will likely be acquired by Bellsouth this year. They have been in talks off and on for the past few years. This is widely known, but the sticking point is AT&T want to be bought out for $19 billion, while Bellsouth would like it to be more like $17 billion. I actually think it will happen this year at the $19 billion level.
Also on the wireless front, all the RBOC's will want a wireless offering. VZ obviously has the biggest, but Cingular is 60% owned by SBC and 40% by BLS. I wouldn't be surprised to see SBC buy the 40% from BLS, then BLS use that cash to buy AT&T and AT&T Wireless.
"It's funny you bring up Ashcroft --- about all I really know about him
is that he lost an election in 2000..." -psychrelic
Here's a link to a news article explaining Ashcroft's loss to Carnahan.
Carnahan, by the way, died three weeks before the election.
I am being straightt when I say I prefer to develop protections for the future over worrying about the past. What it seems like you are really saying is that you want a guilty party to fry ---- I could be wrong.
My goal is to eliminate the opposition here, ie kill the fundamental
Would I like to eventually know about the complete breahdown that set the table for 9-11? Yes, although I suspect I, and you, and everyone else, already know a lot of it. It goes back to Carter and his dismanteling of the CIA, it carries forward through EVERY prez admin since then, and the price was paid on 9-11. It is not a cliche to say the world changed on 9-11, but not because everyone else should worry about us. Rather, it shook us awake to everything we had been trying to ignore for years and years, We had weakened ourselves under the guise of globality, and multinationalism, and diplomacy, all the while fooling ourselves into thinking there was some good coming out of it. There wasn't enough to offset the price we paid, and will continue to pay, until we step forward and accept our responsibilities as a singular nation of people first, and citizens of a larger world second. We took our eyes off of the ball, and the whole world has/is paying for it. The US has acted like a 6ft eleven inch HS junior for the last umpteen years --- walkiong around slouched down and trying to be an average 5'11''. It doesn't work that way. But, JOMO.
Mark's articles made interesting reading, but I've read them before (the base data, anyway, though not necessarily their particular conclusions). However, in trying to understand his wacky, Stone-like conclussion, and your question (left-handed insult, actually) about would I rather trust my leaders,it reminds me of the character Col. Jessup in A Few Good Men, who said, "Son, we live in a world that has walls. And those walls have to be guarded by men with guns.I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives. You don't want the truth. Because deep down, in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall. You need me there". Oddly enough, there are certain things at certain times that don't require a long explanation.
It's funny you bring up Ashcroft --- about all I really know about him is that he lost an election in 2000 , but instead of running to the courts like Al, he swallowed his medicine and moved on. Oh, by the way, in case you missed it then while viewing the world through your uber-left blinders, Missouri had several illegalities during the 2000 election (specifically, the St Louis area, where Carnahan won the statewide election).
Moving on, though, please tell us about Ashcroft, and try to leave out the inuendos and belief that you understand motivation....That's right, use some data, please.
Finally, after 8 years of a completely useless Justice head in Reno (except for her ability to kidnap small children), anything seems better to me.
"So we are all agreed that you disagree with free choice, right?"
Hah. Perhaps some people wanted to get more, but if they truly are greedy, then I'm sure their lawyers told them that there was an excellent chance to get more than $2M. Now why would they think there's an excellent chance?
As a member of the Sesame Street generation, I don't want to forget 9/11 or the threats we face. So how come the 9/11 commission is being so completely and continually stonewalled? Come on, don't you REALLY want to know what happened and why? Or would you rather just trust your leaders to say nevermind and go back to sleep.