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LightSquared CEO Resigns Amid Appearance of Bribery 211

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the punished-with-huge-severance-package dept.
New submitter msauve writes "LightSquared, the company who's request to use make use of spectrum in a way likely to interfere with GPS was recently denied, has suffered another setback. CEO Sanjiv Ahuja has now resigned, only a week after a report detailing political contributions and the personal financial interests of Obama and officials in his administration in SkyTerra, the precursor company to LightSquared. Ahuja's one and only contribution to the Democratic Party occurred on the same day he tried to arrange a meeting with Obama administration officials, apparently as part of LightSquared's desire to fast track FCC approval of a change beneficial to the company."
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LightSquared CEO Resigns Amid Appearance of Bribery

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  • Re:Wow (Score:5, Informative)

    by GodInHell (258915) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @12:38PM (#39198463) Homepage
    Actually... this keeps happening when people try to buy Obama. He got burned by his dealings with Rezzko and has been really strict about reporting and clean hands accounting since.

    -GiH
  • by OverlordQ (264228) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @12:43PM (#39198543) Journal

    You know, really depressing thing I've found is that there appears to be no proof of this allegation. The accusation enough seems to have been sufficient to stop anyone from even trying to prove it.

    Because there isn't anything to prove, it's basic physics. But to appease shills like you, they did do that test [businessweek.com].

  • Re:Important to note (Score:1, Informative)

    by Mashiki (184564) <mashiki@NOsPam.gmail.com> on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @12:47PM (#39198597) Homepage

    Well this makes a bunch of really funny things going on for Obama. And what 8 or 9 failed solar companies that got massive hand outs and F&F plus an extra gun running program that was started that let guns walk. Obama not better than the last guy, he's much, much worse.

  • by Baloroth (2370816) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @12:50PM (#39198631)

    You've obviously not been looking hard enough. The Ars Technica [arstechnica.com] article sums up the science behind it pretty well (basically, they did a test run of the terrestrial base-stations and it interfered with ~75% of GPS devises, after LightSquared reduced the stations power to try to fix the problem). There is a ton of proof that they actually interfere with GPS signals, namely, actual experiments.

  • Re:Important to note (Score:4, Informative)

    by Kythe (4779) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @12:50PM (#39198645)
    F&F began under Bush. And I'm aware only of one solar company that received a grant, yet later failed (not sure what a business failing has to do with anything, that DOES happen in a market economy). Perhaps you can elaborate?
  • Re:Important to note (Score:4, Informative)

    by tripleevenfall (1990004) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @12:54PM (#39198715)

    To be fair, F&F was not doing anything close to what it did under Holder during the Bush years, and it's not Bush's attorney general lying up and down about what he knew about the program and when.

  • by BMOC (2478408) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @12:54PM (#39198725)
    This is enough to get someone to resign on the appearance of Bribery but Chris Dodd's blatant admission of buying representation is not? double standard continues for elected officials.
  • by msauve (701917) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @01:04PM (#39198871)
    "the intended effect (fast track approval) didn't happen."

    Actually, it did, in a way. The fast track process was started, the filing was accepted in one day (a process which normally takes months). The normally required 30 day comment period was reduced by the FCC to an effective 5 1/2 days (it was 10 days, but across a long US holiday weekend). Granted, the actual approval didn't end up happening, but not because the FCC didn't try to help them out. It was an alert CTIA [ctia.org] which filed an extension request, and alerted GPS users of the potential issues.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @01:12PM (#39198987)

    Rejected? Rejected is a bit of a strong word. Try deferred until they met certain conditions like raising further outside capital.

    Which they met.

    And no, it was not Bush's fault. Nobody is saying that. They are saying that Bush originated the program, and that Solyndra was a fast-track candidate, but fault is distinct from the clarification. When it comes to fault, It was China's. Because China massively subsidized their own solar industry.

    However, Solyndra DID build their factory, they DID follow through on what they claimed to do, so you know what? The people who claim it was a fraud and a scam are wrong.

  • by vlm (69642) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @01:14PM (#39199017)

    For them to offer conditional approval later shows someone was pushing for Lightsquared to succeed.

    They appear to be crooks and what they're doing was a dumb idea from a tech standpoint ... but... from personal experience the FCC will license almost anyone to do almost anything on a conditional experimental non-interfering basis. I know this goes against /. group think about the govt, but at least WRT to temporary conditional experimental licenses the FCC has always been very libertarian, perhaps the most so of all the fedgov, maybe more than all the rest of the fedgov put together.

    The way its supposed to work, for a real world example, is 20 ham radio guys who know what they're doing, get a temporary experimental license to F around near the now unused traditional 500 KHz marine radio band, mostly trying to figure out how they can do it without interfering with any remaining primary users (if any?). Then the experiment ends and everyone goes away, more or less happy. Someday, maybe Very Soon the data those guys gathered will get the hams a 500 KHz allocation ... or maybe not. What LS did instead of basically a big lab experiment, was get their standard off the shelf FCC response of "go out there, F around, and for gods sake don't break anything and stop the moment I tell you to" permission slip that anyone else can get for the asking, and then used it to raise Billions of dollars and make campaign contributions and then started crying unfair when it turns out it didn't work out.

    Its not like the FCC was "pushing" just for LS, they pretty much rubber stamp any non-totally stupid experimental request. LS is just crying because the experiment failed and they owe Billions and though thousands in campaign contributions would fix it. Millions in bribes might have. But thousands? Not gonna work.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @01:27PM (#39199201)

    Let's see, counting Solyndra, you have now come up to 4.

    You're still 4 short.

    Oh wait, Uni-Solar's PARENT company is the one that filed for bankruptcy, not just the Uni-Solar unit. Maybe the whole company had problems, but the unit itself could have been fine. Evergreen got subsidies from the State of Massachusetts, not the Feds. I'd look up SpectraWatt, but I think two out of three is enough disputation to demand that you share more facts to justify your claims.

  • Re:Nothing new (Score:3, Informative)

    by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland&yahoo,com> on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @01:41PM (#39199375) Homepage Journal

    AS someone who has met with politician, and not made any kind of donation, I call you a liar.

  • Re:Important to note (Score:4, Informative)

    by Kythe (4779) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @01:47PM (#39199485)
    Spectra Watt did not receive a loan guarantee (they received a small grant). Evergreen Solar received no federal assistance. Uni-Solar is still in business, and at any rate did NOT receive a loan guarantee. I'd tell you to take your own advice, but given your anonymous sniping, I truly doubt accuracy is among your values.
  • Re:Important to note (Score:4, Informative)

    by Seraphim1982 (813899) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @01:49PM (#39199513)

    F&F began under Bush.

    No, "Project Gunrunner" began under President Bush. "Operation Fast and Furious", while part of Project Gunrunner, didn't begin until 2009.

    And I'm aware only of one solar company that received a grant, yet later failed

    I can think of three off the top of my head: Solyndra and Beacon Power who both received DOE money, and Evergreen Solar who received Massachusetts money.
    While they are still around I personally don't have high hopes for 1366 Technologies, who also received DOE money. They appear to be repeating the same mistake Evergreen made, specifically, betting that the price of silicon isn't going to go down. They may also be falling into the non-standard panels problem but I don't know enough about their final process to be sure.

    Also, while not a solar company, Ener1, another DOE recipient filed for chapter 11 about a month ago.

  • Re:Important to note (Score:5, Informative)

    by Kythe (4779) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @02:06PM (#39199773)
    See above. SpectraWatt and Evergreen Solar did NOT receive federal loan guarantees (Evergreen received no federal assistance at all). AES Eastern was a coal subsidiary of AES that went bankrupt, not the project funded by DoE. Beacon is probably the closest you get on that list, and they paid back their loan.

    When I get the time, I'll look up the others.

    My suggestion would be: perhaps before you get your "blood boiling", you should consider NOT taking what the right wing says about Obama at face value. They have a strong vested interest in generating scandal where there is none.
  • Re:Important to note (Score:4, Informative)

    by ravenshrike (808508) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @02:38PM (#39200223)

    No you stupid fuckwit, it didn't. Operation Wide Receiver did, however that was known and sanctioned by the Mexican government and was a serious attempt to track the routes the guns used, with the majority of the weapons having GPS trackers in them, albeit ones that turned out to be ineffectual. Said operation used less than 500 guns and was STOPPED because it was completely ineffectual. The operations, multiple, started under Obama all had the express purpose of shifting as many guns as possible across the border to, and I quote, be recovered at crime scenes. It did NOT have the sanction of the Mexican government, technically making it an act of war, and coincided with the 90% of Mexican crime guns FUD pushed by the government and helped along by CBS NBC et al. The operation started after the Brady bunch was told Obama was working on gun control back in early 2009 and the only logical interpretation of what happened was that they were attempting to drum up support for another AWB. Either that or they're batshit fucking insane. Completely different fucking operations to anybody with two fucking neurons to rub together.

  • by drainbramage (588291) on Wednesday February 29, 2012 @07:16PM (#39203487)

    From reading /. I learned that only those morally bankrupt evil conniving lowdown scumbag Republicans take bribes.
    Democrats take campaign donations.
    Hope that clears things up.

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