So Spitzer did some naughty stuff and got caught.
Sad, pathetic, and stupid.
I’m not a big Spitzer fan boy. I’m disturbed at the “take no prisoners” actions that occurred on Wall Street. Yes, there were real problems and illegalities there that needed fixing, but one could argue that some bad may have actually come of it.
However, there are a couple of comments I’ll add to the general melee over his resignation:
1. He was the first AG to go after adware companies, serving as an inspiration to other law-enforcement agencies (including the FTC). One could argue that the work behind this was Justin Brookman’s (Brookman worked for Spitzer as an Assistant AG), but needless to say, Spitzer was the boss in charge.
In the same vein, his agency provided wonderful fodder for this blog with published internal paperwork and emails showing criminal acts by Direct Revenue.
The work he did in this area (and Brookman’s) is commendable.
2. A critical and potentially very scary back-story may be that, as USC professor Jon Taplin alleges, this is the first big public example of NSA’s domestic wiretapping program.
From a WSJ article on this program (via Taplin):
The central role the NSA has come to occupy in domestic intelligence gathering has never been publicly disclosed. But an inquiry reveals that its efforts have evolved to reach more broadly into data about people’s communications, travel and finances in the U.S. than the domestic surveillance programs brought to light since the 2001 terrorist attacks.