Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Sign up for Free News & Updates

February 24, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

ANOTHER PRESS SUBPOENA....MarketWatch columnist Herb Greenberg is the latest journalist to be threatened with a subpoena:

The subpoena seeks "all" unpublished "communications," including emails and phone records, between me and people and organizations I've quoted and at least one I've never quoted regarding five stocks. Never mind that I have never written about one of those companies. And never mind that the other four (yes, including Overstock) deserved every word I wrote and then some.

Dragging the press into this kind of investigation is hardly standard operating procedure for the SEC, whose job is to enforce securities laws. We're not talking national security, here.

No, it's not national security, and Greenberg isn't James Risen or Dana Priest. But a reporter is a reporter, and if anonymous sources stop talking to them because they're afraid they'll be given up under threat of contempt or jail time, then anonymous sources will just start clamming up. And that's bad for everyone. As Greenberg says:

If my unpublished communications aren't safe from government eyes, then the tools of every business reporter in this country become fair game for any company that doesn't like scrutiny and chooses to play the "conspiracy" card.

If that happens, sorry to say dear readers you will be on your own when it comes to policing public companies.

The SEC needs to back down. And if they don't, Congress needs to start setting rules about what anonymous sources can and can't count on when they talk to reporters.

Kevin Drum 11:32 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (48)

Bookmark and Share
 
Comments

Kevin, you had so much promise -- you decided Bush was right about UAE and the ports, and you decided to ignore any and all facts to the contray. Anything anyone pointed out about connections to bin Laden / supporting terrorism? Just cherry-picking ... like Bush's lies re: Iraq!

Yes! Finally, Kevin, the clear Wingnut!

And yet this morning, you don't seem to recognize that suppressing reporters (more than their corporate overlords, and the reporters' need to be "kewl" do already) is vital to protecting Our Lord W, and his work to keep us safe from all the bogey-men!

Kevin, come back to the light!

Posted by: Freedom Phukher on February 24, 2006 at 11:38 AM | PERMALINK

Congress needs to start setting rules about what anonymous sources can and can't count on when they talk to reporters.

Congress is too busy in a giant CYA operation for GWB. Call later.

Posted by: lib on February 24, 2006 at 11:39 AM | PERMALINK

But you know, if W Bush orders the CIA to turn over classified documents to Bob Woodward, that is neato peachy fine....

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on February 24, 2006 at 11:42 AM | PERMALINK

More directly on point, I track one stock where media outlets, including some large traditional media, _are_ being used as part of the pump process. Everyone who has researched the company and the journalists' history knows this. How should the SEC investigate such a situation?

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on February 24, 2006 at 11:43 AM | PERMALINK

I realize you're one of the journalists, and therefore will rise to the occasion, but reporters put their pants on one leg at a time like the rest of us. What makes them above the rule of law? There are still whistleblower laws for genuine cases of whistleblowing, and the loss of anonymous sources for scare-mongering is no loss.

I realize that the loss of anonymous sources would radically change the way reporters operate, and would force them to get some actual facts for a change, but I fail to see why this is bad.

Posted by: conspiracy nut on February 24, 2006 at 11:44 AM | PERMALINK

Did it occur to you, Kevin, that the SEC is investigating security fraud here?

That is a serious matter. Contacting Herb Greenberg is part of a larger investigtation.

I bet the investors who were hoodwinked want the SEC to find the swindlers and get them before a jury.

Posted by: Paddy Whack on February 24, 2006 at 11:47 AM | PERMALINK

Freedom of the press? Good-bye to all of that. We are in the twilight of the coming authoritarian darkness.

Posted by: Hostile on February 24, 2006 at 11:52 AM | PERMALINK

Rely on cn to call for fascism.

Posted by: Ace Franze on February 24, 2006 at 11:53 AM | PERMALINK

Kevin, you've argued in favor of a federal shield law for journalists. As a former reporter -- and one who at one time held investigative reporting as among the highest of all callings -- I've had very mixed feelings about it. If we just hadn't seen so many abuses of it recently, so many reporters who trade confidentiality for access rather than for valid information.

Yet you are right: here is a case where the lack of any kind of meaningful shield law is encouraging federal investigators (in this case, SEC investigators) to go on nothing better than fishing trips.

Well ... this is the thing: reporters aren't licensed, they don't really have to pass any kind of proficiency tests, they aren't held even nominally to any kind of ethics standards -- not the way, say, lawyers or psychologists are, at least technically -- and in fact there are practically no barriers at all to entry into the field beyond one's ability to half-competently write plus be able to impress an editor during a job interview.

I became very disillusioned with journalism in part because of all the nitwits I kept encountering ... e.g., the reporter in Oklahoma who assured me that her local paper could NOT expose the old boy power network in the local community because "well, they'd just take away our publisher's license and shut us down." She was actually dead serious, and I imagine that -- now 20 years later -- she's still dutifully informing her fellow citizens about the news each day. Ye gods!

Should people like her be given utter immunity via a Shield Law?

Nor would Judith Miller have deserved such protection. And, given recent disclosures, neither does Mr. Woodward, who apparently had a much deeper knowledge of the BushReich's casual relationship with national security secrets than previously known.

There was a time when, starry-eyed, I thought that the plain, obvious standards of ethics that all reporters nominally subscribe to was enough ... and that a federal shield law was clearly justified. This SEC fishing expedition reminds us that there are still good reasons for such a law. But, the foul taste of the Judith Millers is still there, too.


Posted by: Roger Keeling on February 24, 2006 at 11:55 AM | PERMALINK

Reporters following the same laws as everyone else is fascism?

Posted by: conspiracy nut on February 24, 2006 at 11:57 AM | PERMALINK

> and in fact there are practically no barriers at
> all to entry into the field beyond one's ability
> to half-competently write plus be able to impress
> an editor during a job interview.

Would Gannon/Guckert be/have been covered by Kevin's proposed shield law? Why or why not?

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on February 24, 2006 at 11:59 AM | PERMALINK

If the anonymous sources are lying, or using reporters in order to mislead readers, or if the reporters are betraying their readers by knowingly printing false information -- the SCREW 'EM.

Screw the anonymous sources.

Scre the reporters who erroneously think they're necessary to do journalism.

Neither one has a leg to stand on.

It's the reporter's job to differentiate the source who's lying, profiting financially (think ENRON), or who is pushing an agenda.

Failing to inform readers merely compounds the sin, and perverts the function of being a reporter in the first place.

That's why nothing John Dickerson writes will have the ring of truth, the credibility of journalism, or the trust of readers. He knowingly printed false information about Rove's role in outing Valerie Plame.

Worse, he has tried to defend that by hiding under the skirts of journalistic source confidentiality -- a clear perversion of that principle.

And he did the nation a disservice in the process.

Posted by: SombreroFallout on February 24, 2006 at 12:03 PM | PERMALINK

This is actually I know something about.

Herb Greenberg is not just a journalist. He is widely believed to be connected with a number of hedge funds that are intentionally trying to destroy companies via illegal means. Overstock-dot-com and Novastar financial are two of the companies that Herb has a 100% negative record of bashing, and they are also two companies that have been targets of massive, coordinated, illegal naked shorting attacks.

Go to www dot thesanitycheck dot com for details.

From what I know and have read over the past 2+ years on this issue, talking to Herb makes it look like the SEC is finally starting to do its job.

Posted by: Anon on February 24, 2006 at 12:05 PM | PERMALINK

If law enforcement cannot, in appropriate circumstances, force anonymous sources to be revealed, the insitutional media becomes an incredibly powerful tool for coordinating and carrying out crime.

There may be issues of the evidence and basis for any particular request for disclosure, but Kevin's apparent position that here that journalists should never be compelled to reveal anonymous sources is misguided.

Posted by: cmdicely on February 24, 2006 at 12:21 PM | PERMALINK

I can't wait for them to subpoena all those journalists on the yahoo.finance message boards that claim the stocks I own suck.

Can Apple use this power to squash all of the rumor sites that sometimes get their product announcements right?

Posted by: toast on February 24, 2006 at 12:27 PM | PERMALINK

"Reporters following the same laws as everyone else is fascism?
Posted by: conspiracy nut"

Disingenuity is hard to beat as an avoidance tool.

Posted by: Ace Franze on February 24, 2006 at 12:31 PM | PERMALINK

Congress needs to start setting rules about what anonymous sources can and can't count on when they talk to reporters.

Who leaked this information about an entity called "Congress" having the power to constrain the actions of the executive branch?

Posted by: B on February 24, 2006 at 12:33 PM | PERMALINK

Disingenuity is hard to beat as an avoidance tool.
Disingenuity? You mean like claiming that reporters following the same laws as everyone else is fascism? That seems pretty disingenious to me.

Or maybe you can back that up some, but I doubt it.

Posted by: conspiracy nut on February 24, 2006 at 12:40 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin:

I'm not going to do all the legwork here--too busy--but I really suggest you look into Greenberg and the SEC a bit more other than what you've read in his own article.

Posted by: tbrosz on February 24, 2006 at 12:48 PM | PERMALINK

Go to www dot thesanitycheck dot com for details.

You mean like the one about Herb being a poop eater?

Posted by: toast on February 24, 2006 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

According liberals, over 60% of the American public are fascists. I suppose if Affirmative Action can mean fairness and equality, fascism can mean freedom, liberty and responsibility. So, what's so bad about being a fascist?

Posted by: Freedom Fighter on February 24, 2006 at 1:09 PM | PERMALINK

Congress needs to start setting rules about what anonymous sources can and can't count on when they talk to reporters.

That's just plain dumb. You don't really think Congress is going to be anywhere near your side, do you?

We'll solve this problem when reporters stop giving carte blanche to any anonymous source who wants to do a hatchet job on his political enemy. We'd be better off (and journalists would have a better arguement) if anonymity was reserved for those who really need it and not granted to Washington game players.

Posted by: tomeck on February 24, 2006 at 1:10 PM | PERMALINK

If Kevin's OK with handing over port operations to a company owned by a state that has, in recent years, had connections to terrorists, it's hard to see why Kevin would have trouble putting decisions about when to go after reporters into the hands of prosecutors.

Seriously, I'm as liberal as the next guy, but the port business has Kevin and Jimmy Carter sounding like the sort of earnest, naive do-gooders who don't know when to lock their car doors. Makes me question the soundness of their judgment generally. This is the moral equivalent of hiring a babysitter. You don't give a candidate with a spotty past the benefit of the doubt in that context. You hire that guy to work on a street crew, maybe. But you don't give him a sensitive job where, if he lapses, someone could die. If you don't get that, then there's something pretty basic about your approach to matters of practical security that's not working properly.

Posted by: tom on February 24, 2006 at 1:18 PM | PERMALINK

"So, what's so bad about being a fascist?
Posted by: Freedom Fighter"

Good job of pegging yourself (and cn.)!

By the way, cn, since you are still at the beginning of your study of history, you will find that muzzling the press in whatever way initially palatable to the public is a hallmark of fascism. Maybe I was too hasty in suggesting you are disingenuous, maybe "stupid" would have done.

Posted by: Ace Franze on February 24, 2006 at 1:19 PM | PERMALINK

So, what's so bad about being a fascist?

It gets uncomfortable upside-down on those lampposts.

Posted by: brooksfoe on February 24, 2006 at 1:31 PM | PERMALINK

2 points:

1) Journalists must cooperate with criminal investigaions, BUT ONLY IF ABSOLUTELY NO OTHER SOURCE OF INFORMATION EXISTS FOR PROSECUTORS

Prosecutors must prove to a court that a given reporter's testimony is imperative.

That's what Patrick Fitzgerald had to do.

2) Whistleblowers historically blew whistles WITHOUT LEGAL PROTECTION for decades. There may be some people with knowledge of impropriety these days who won't come forward in some cases, but it is simply a false "Wolf!" alarm to effectively claim that ALL WHISTLEBLOWERS WILL DISAPPEAR without a shield law.

Posted by: bz on February 24, 2006 at 1:32 PM | PERMALINK

muzzling the press
We may be getting somewhere here. How is requiring journalists to follow the same laws as the rest of us "muzzling the press"?

Posted by: conspiracy nut on February 24, 2006 at 1:33 PM | PERMALINK

Mark Cuban has some interesting things to say about "massive, coordinated, illegal naked shorting attacks" on his blog. You might have to scroll through some sports stuff.

Posted by: VAMark on February 24, 2006 at 1:39 PM | PERMALINK

Upthread I wrote: "Yet you are right: here is a case where the lack of any kind of meaningful shield law is encouraging federal investigators (in this case, SEC investigators) to go on nothing better than fishing trips."

Ah, but now I see that Mr. Greenberg may be functioning as something quite different from a regular journalist. An argument has been made that he's perhaps been specifically flogging certain funds, and attacking others, for reasons having nothing to do with his obligations as a reporter.

In other words, he may not be a very good candidate for sympathy on this. The SEC may not just be "fishing" after all, but pursuing a very important and perinent lead. I don't know the validity of any of these suggestions of wrongdoing by Mr. Greenberg, but it certainly shades the entire discussion, now doesn't it?

Posted by: Roger Keeling on February 24, 2006 at 1:42 PM | PERMALINK

No, no! It's fascism! Ace told me so.

Posted by: conspiracy nut on February 24, 2006 at 1:45 PM | PERMALINK

> I can't wait for them to subpoena all those
> journalists on the yahoo.finance message boards
> that claim the stocks I own suck.

Where have you been? That already happens.

Posted by: DR on February 24, 2006 at 1:48 PM | PERMALINK

I thought the last quote Kevin posted was a bit rich, kind of a coffee through the nose moment.

Oh really? The public would be "on its own" with respect to news about public companies? As opposed to the current situation, where all kinds of valuable inside information is published in the financial press on a daily basis?

I'm willing to be convinced that in the case of say, potential witenesses who fear for their safety in a criminal context, that a privilege for statements to reporters might be a good thing for the public.

But the financial press? I mean, now I'm laughing as I type this! Maybe Mr. Greenberg momentarily forgot what the interplay of "public company" and the "press" actually means.

Posted by: hank on February 24, 2006 at 2:06 PM | PERMALINK

Is he under suspicion? Or are his communications being used to verify other sources.

The 'fifth column' as it were seems to protest whenever they're asked to put their mouth where their money is.

Posted by: Crissa on February 24, 2006 at 2:31 PM | PERMALINK


I disagree with anon - you're wrong about Greenberg. He's been subject to vicious attacks by the likes of Patrick Byrne of OSTK. Yes, naked short selling is a problem, but it's also entirely possible that your stock sucks. He has nothing to gain from doing what he does.. unlike Byrne, who has everything to gain. Couldn't be that he's mismanaging the company.. nooo, it's because there is a conspiracy to try to drive down your stock price.

Posted by: Andy on February 24, 2006 at 2:54 PM | PERMALINK

then anonymous sources will just start clamming up. And that's bad for everyone.

That's more than a bit naive, Kevin. If anonymous sources keep their mouths shut, that's just fantastic for people who want to conduct the public's business in dark corners and back rooms, away from any scrutiny.

Posted by: libdevil on February 24, 2006 at 3:06 PM | PERMALINK

Want a different example of a government agency subpoenaing a journalist? In this case it was a city government. Moreover, the journalists work appeared online and independent of any publication (bloggers beware).

Jamie Kalven is a freelance journalist and community organizer from Chicago. Over the past decade, he's worked as a resident advocate at Stateway Gardens, a public housing development located on the south side of the city. In July 2005, he began publishing on his website (www.viewfromtheground.com) a serialized online article.

Titled Kicking the Pigeon, the 17-part piece chronicles the repeated harassment and abuse of Diane Bond, a Stateway Gardens resident, at the hands of Chicago police officers. It examines Bonds futile attempts to halt or even to report the numerous incidents. Like so many complaints of police abuse, however, hers fell through the cracks. In April 2004, Kalven, with the help of a legal aid clinic based out of the University of Chicago Law School, then filed a federal civil rights lawsuit on her behalf, naming the officers responsible for the offenses. In April 2005, the suit was amended to include the superintendent of police and several other high-level CPD administrators.

In June 2005, however, things got a little more interesting when the city subpoenaed all Kalvens notes and writings regarding the various individuals named in the case. As he informed readers in a recent email, he refused to comply on First Amendment grounds:

"On June 13, 2005, I received a subpoena from the City law department in connection with the Bond case. It demanded that I produce copies of any and all documents, notes, reports, writings, computer files, audio tapes, video tapes, or any written or recorded item in my possession regarding any of twenty-four named individuals (members of the Stateway Gardens community and police officers, as well as an expert witness for the plaintiff and her attorney) and/or any allegations of misconduct by any police officer at Stateway Gardens. I have refused to comply with the subpoena on multiple grounds; the First Amendment chief among them."

The word on the street here in Chicago is that the city is preparing to come back at him again with another subpoena.

Anyway, the article is worth checking out a great example of locally-based electronic journalism. And the story will continue to unfold in the coming months, with obvious implications for those journalists (bloggers and otherwise) who ply their trade online.

Posted by: azzardo on February 24, 2006 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

Azzardo,

Do you think the correct result is that he should not be subject to discovery? If so, why?

It sounds like he is an actual party to the lawsuit, its obvious that our adversarial system depends, in large part, on the process of discovery to settle cases -- i.e., there is quite a bit of B.S. people are willing to spout when its just a question of sitting at a bar (or filing a lawsuit), when you are under oath, and are grilled by the opposing party, testimony and facts tend to get a bit more focused.

In this case, assuming the police, or some members of the police, ought to be disciplined for engaging in abuse, how would you, as the judge, figure out who to discipline, and, if applicable, the amount of damages?

Would you do it on the basis of a story citing anonymouse sources by any journalist?

I am fully behind the concept of a free press and the role the press can play in investigating stories, however, it strikes me as odd that when it comes to actual responsibility of legal prosecution, there is a knee jerk reaction that the press ought to be able to opt out?

Posted by: hank on February 24, 2006 at 3:49 PM | PERMALINK

Hank:

I should have made it more clear that Kalven is not, in fact, a party in his case. With his help, the U of C legal clinic filed a lawsuit on Bond's behalf. She is the only plaintiff, though Kalven was deposed.

And of course I understand the need for the discovery process in our legal system. But you have to agree this subpoena raises some more complicated questions. Here's a better explanation of Kalven's position (or should I say dilemma?), from an article on "Kicking the Pigeon" by Chicago Reader columnist Mike Miner:

"Last month the corporation counsel's office, which is defending the officers, subpoenaed Kalven's notes, tapes, and other documents concerning Stateway Gardens. Kalven refused to turn them over. In his response to the city he invoked the idea of a reporter's privilege, but he knows that his stand is nothing like Judith Miller's. He argues that he's not protecting a secret source; he's protecting his freedom of association. Because he's been a fixture at Stateway Gardens for so many years, he's trusted there; and because he's trusted, he knows much more about the residents than the police do. "Lots of my sources and contacts are people engaged in criminal activity," he says. "The first question in my deposition -- after the questions about Diane Bond -- was, 'Was so-and-so engaged in drug traffic?'""

http://www.chicagoreader.com/hottype/2005/050729_1.html

Posted by: azzardo on February 24, 2006 at 4:18 PM | PERMALINK

I agree with anon above:
"Herb Greenberg is not just a journalist. He is widely believed to be connected with a number of hedge funds that are intentionally trying to destroy companies via illegal means. Overstock-dot-com and Novastar financial are two of the companies that Herb has a 100% negative record of bashing, and they are also two companies that have been targets of massive, coordinated, illegal naked shorting attacks."

There is a real donnybrook between Patrick Byrne and those (Herb Greenberg included) he is suggesting are in an illegal conspiracy.

The SEC is doing its job in getting the facts. They should be supported.

Posted by: Bob M on February 24, 2006 at 4:45 PM | PERMALINK

Azzardo,

For starters, I would repeal all of the drug criminalization laws, and grant pardons to those currently incarcerated on drug crimes, if it were up to me, so that's where I stand on that one.

But, I'm still not sure why this confidentiality should extend to court-ordered discovery and testimony.

I work in a field where a good bit of my livelihood depends upon keeping information confidential. If, however, I was cited to testify, I might have to do so.

It certainly seems to make sense that reporters, in general, would have a professional standard of confidentiality, but I really do not understand extending a legal privilege to them.

Out of all of the confidential leads, only a small fraction of them are going to end up as the subject of a civil or criminal lawsuit anyway. As to that small fraction, and considering the large fraction remaining and the availability of non-anonymous work, I still haven't been convinced.

You must admit, at least, that the subject of Kevin's initial post must be using some of the substances that the project residents are accused of dealing, yes? The guy is a FINANCIAL REPORTER ON PUBLIC COMPANIES. Anyone who gives him material, non-public information about such a company may well be committing a crime (the contrast to the public housing project residents could not be more stark). The general public depends upon the fear of sanctions for making sure that these leaks do not occur. For him to claim a privilege is ludicrous!

Posted by: hank on February 24, 2006 at 5:51 PM | PERMALINK

What, couldn't the NSA find his phone number?

That was one of the caveats of Bush's secret
domestic security eavesdropping program;
that they be phoning overseas, that they
work for major news organizations, etc.....

Posted by: lefty on February 24, 2006 at 5:51 PM | PERMALINK

Disclosure of sources for investment advice, albeit necessary, is not sufficient:

THE TALKING CURE
Issue of 2002-12-09
Posted 2002-12-02
... conflicts of interest riddle the securities and accounting industriesresearch analysts touting dubious companies to win their business, auditors signing off on dubious numbers to keep itand that something must be done, so Wall Street has decided to adopt the talking cure. ... but the diagnosis is facile, and the remedy won't work. ...
... "... people in general don't know how to use that information," George Loewenstein, an economics professor at Carnegie Mellon, says. "And, to the extent that they do anything at all, they actually tend to underestimate the severity of these conflicts."...
... Loewenstein and his colleagues Don Moore and Daylian Cain devised an experiment. One group of people (estimators) were asked to look at several jars of coins from a distance and estimate the value of the coins in each jar.....
... (advisers) were allowed to get closer to the jars and give the estimators advice. The advisers, however, were paid according to how high the estimators' guesses were. So the advisers had an incentive to give misleading advice. ... even when the estimators were told that the advisers had a conflict of interest they didn't care. They continued to guess higher, as though the advice were honest and unbiased. Full disclosure didn't make them any more skeptical....
... Once the conflict of interest was disclosed, the advisers' advice got worse. "It's as if people said, 'You know the score, so now anything goes,' ...
It has become a truism on Wall Street that conflicts of interest are unavoidable. In fact, most of them only seem so, because avoiding them makes it harder to get rich.....
James Surowiecki
http://www.newyorker.com/talk/content/?021209ta_talk_surowiecki on December 2, 2002.

Posted by: me on February 24, 2006 at 6:26 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin,

You keep beating your drum without responding to the concerns of the other side.

It's getting obnoxious. You're starting to sound like... an ideologue or a zealot.

Posted by: Carl Nyberg on February 24, 2006 at 6:46 PM | PERMALINK

As a former SEC enforcement attorney (11 years), I too would ask that Kevin revisit this in light of Herb Greenberg's less than savory reputation.

Posted by: moe99 on February 24, 2006 at 7:01 PM | PERMALINK

In recent memory, exactly how many of the financial scandals, those for which the SEC should hang their heads, have occurred due to malfeasance on the part of short sellers? I can't think of any.

Sure Herb's columns are negative. That is his beat. He is there to report on companies that stand a good chance of losing serious value. Most serious short sellers don't wake up one morning with a hard-on for a stock. It comes from research and watching executives evade questions and report numbers in ways that can be questioned.

I have paid money to subscribe to services where Herb Greenberg wrote, and can attest that he was one of the columnist I most valued. Anyone who is serious about investing knows to stay the hell away from companies that he writes about, NOT BECAUSE HE IS UNSAVORY AND UNETHICAL, but because of his track record of being right early and often.

The SEC in trying to silence resources such as Herb is only giving cover to the dishonest executives and the wall street analysts who pimp these securities.

Posted by: RickG on February 24, 2006 at 8:27 PM | PERMALINK

Anyone who is serious about investing knows to stay the hell away from companies that he writes about, NOT BECAUSE HE IS UNSAVORY AND UNETHICAL...

Partly agree...if only because by the time Herb writes about them there usually is trouble a-brewing at a company, or minor-trouble which then snowballs into a self-fulfilling prophecy from the publicity Herb generates. I read him closely back in his Chronicle days, and it was very clear he had never taken an Accounting 1A class, but was merely channeling for his short-seller sources. He probably has acquired some substance since those days, and I doubt he is on the take from short sellers (which would be incredibly stupid and it is unlikely he would have gotten away with it for ten+ years...) but I think he has in the past let himself be used by short-sellers, and just may be lucky he hasn't gotten burned professionally in the process.

Posted by: Tom F on February 25, 2006 at 12:29 AM | PERMALINK

"disingenious "

>>>sigh

I actually sorta like this as a coinage.

"disingenious', adj. displaying a utter lack of intellectual rigor which approaches a perverted sort of anti-genius. Prime example: Dear Leader.

'disingenuous': Not straighforward

Wow. Who here meets that definition?

So, any stock analyst who writes an unfavorable review of a company's (Overstock.com) prospects can now be harrassed in this fashion for the supreme 'crime' of pissing off that company's CEO and putting at risk said CEO's prospective profits when he seeks to unloads his hundreds of millions in stock grants?

Wow.

Who knew?

Posted by: CFShep on February 25, 2006 at 8:00 AM | PERMALINK

no shield law needed:

I don't know what Herb Greenberg wrote and I bet the Kevin doesn't either but journalist should Never have right to cover up illegal acts against the good of the poeple of this nation the way Judith Miller did this - in this way a shield law would do more harm that good and Fritzgarld already set the reason why it would NOT apply - it just that telling Kevin that notes hasn't and won't make any sense to Kevin.

Anyways this is the lastest news on Plame case

By Carol D. Leonnig
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, February 25, 2006; Page A02

Vice President Cheney's former top aide is not entitled to know the identity of an anonymous administration official who revealed information about CIA operative Valerie Plame to two journalists, a federal judge ruled in a hearing yesterday.

To defend himself against criminal charges, however, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby does have the right to copies of all the classified notes he took as Cheney's chief of staff from spring 2003 to spring 2004, U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton said. Libby sought the notes to refresh his memory about matters he was handling while discussing Plame with reporters and when questioned by investigators about those conversations.

NO shield law needed.

Posted by: Cheryl on February 25, 2006 at 11:23 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

Read Jonathan Rowe remembrance and articles
Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Sign up for Free News & Updates

Advertise in WM



buy from Amazon and
support the Monthly