Not since Krupp supplied the Nazi war machine has the ostensibly private sector worked in such close cooperation with Big Government:
In Virginia, a telecommunications consultant reported, Verizon had set up a dedicated fiber-optic line running from New Jersey to Quantico, Va., home to a large military base, allowing government officials to gain access to all communications flowing through the carrier’s operations center.
Why would Verizon want to help the federal behemoth deprive us of our 4th Amendment rights? Because this is what happens to those who don’t cooperate:
In court papers filed during his 2007 insider trading trial, former Qwest CEO Joseph Nacchio claimed that Denver-based Qwest was denied lucrative NSA contracts he believed to be worth $50-$100 million, after Nacchio refused to involve Qwest in a secret NSA program that he thought would be illegal.
Subsequent reporting at the time revealed that it was a domestic wiretapping program in which the NSA wanted to snoop on Qwest’s vast telephone network without court orders. …
Nacchio claimed that the NSA retaliated for his refusal by leaving Qwest out of a $2 billion NSA infrastructure program called Groundbreaker, which was split among numerous contractors, including Verizon.
Nacchio told the feds he might participate but only if he could find a way to do so legally. Apparently that was not good enough.
According to Qwest Senior Vice President James Payne, it was understood that the NSA would not be the only agency that would be annoyed if cooperation was not forthcoming.
Nacchio was sentenced to 6 years on the often nebulous charge of insider trading.