Saturday, January 28, 2012

Tip on Understanding Personal Technology


So I'm trying to learn more about our wired and wireless world.    And I found this "Special Report" from the Economist, which taught me some things even though it came out in October.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Public May Get to See FBI File on Coconut Road Probe into Don Young


A federal judge has ruled that the federal government must give a document-by-document explanation of why it wants to hold back files relating to the criminal probe into a change in an earmark engineered while U.S. Rep. Don Young (R.-Alaska) was Chairman of the House Transportation Committee.    The Department of Justice investigated how language in a bill passed by Congress changed after passage to benefit a real estate developer interested in a Florida highway project who had organized a campaign fundraiser for Alaska's only Member of the House.

In litigation arising from a request based on the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the court ruled that the federal government's claim that Young's privacy interests justified a blanket refusal to turn over files failed given that this investigation was never private.   Indeed, Congress itself had taken the "decidedly uncommon" step of passing legislation directing the Department of Justice (DoJ) to investigate the change in language in the Coconut Road earmark.  

Additionally, the court stated that "It is difficult to understand how there could not be a substantial public interest in disclosure of documents regarding the manner in which DoJ handled high profile allegations of public corruption about an elected official." 

You can find a link to the ruling here.