Skip to comments.Lies, Damned Lies, and Missing Hard Drives
Posted on 07/23/2014 7:22:51 AM PDT by Kaslin
If ever a federal agency has made ineptitude into an art form, it has to be the IRS. After months of stonewalling and grandstanding and Fifth Amendment privilege-pleading before congressional committees, Lois Lerner and the IRS are now the subject of a federal lawsuit. In response to charges that they unfairly impeded the tax-exempt application of the organization "True the Vote," for political reasons, the IRS is invoking "the dog ate my homework" defense
In sworn affidavits filed in court by top IRS muckety-mucks, the IRS maintains that Lois Lerner's computer was sent out to be fixed by a private contractor because of an alleged problem with its hard drive. When the contractor was unable to retrieve the lost data, the computer was forwarded to the IRS's criminal unit forensics lab, which was also unable to recover any data. At that point the computer's hard drive was "degaussed" and batched with other defunct computer components for destruction and/or recycling by an outside contractor. And since the IRS doesn't assign serial numbers to internal computer parts, there's no way to track it down.
In short, the same group that requires private citizens to retain financial records for up to seven years under penalty of law is saying that they are unable to produce two years' worth of electronic correspondence relating directly to an active legal investigation, and furthermore that even if backup tapes of Ms. Lerner's emails did exist at one point, they most likely have been erased since the IRS only retains email records for six months. Six months! The IRS's six months to Joe Taxpayer's seven years. Apparently what's good for the citizen goose is not good for the government gander.
In the law, there is a doctrine called "spoliation of evidence" which basically says when a litigant has destroyed relevant evidence which is sought by the other side, the fact finder may infer that the evidence would have been adverse to the position of the one who destroyed it. This makes sense, as there would be no rational motive for someone to destroy evidence that would prove their innocence in the court of law and the court of public opinion.
Thus, The IRS's failure to produce Lois Lerner's emails implies much more than a mere coincidence or accident, and it is reasonable to conclude that those emails contained damning evidence. If, as President Obama and his proxies continue to insist, this whole thing is a "phony scandal" and a GOP witch hunt, you can be certain that Ms. Lerner's emails records would have been paraded before Congress months ago. Ms. Lerner, for her part, has offered no explanation for what happened aside from asserting her innocence moments before invoking her Fifth Amendment right to remain silent in order to avoid self-incrimination. Taken as a whole, Ms. Lerner's conduct in this case and that of the IRS appear not only damnable, but criminal.
Only time will tell if those responsible for the misconduct and subsequent destruction of evidence will be called to account criminally. If not, then may God help the American taxpayer. If the IRS is allowed to get away with such behavior even once, a dangerous precedent will be established by which one of the government's most powerful arms will become a tool for political retribution by the party in power.
This is not a Republican or Democrat issue, it's a question of whether or not the American people can trust their government to treat them fairly and without prejudice in the eyes of the law. It's about whether or not our Constitution is worth the paper it's written on. It's about whether or not the American government remains an institution of, by, and for the people, or an unaccountable Leviathan concerned only with the propagation of its own power.
So, even to a LIV, isn’t it obvious that the IRS did something that they are trying to cover up?
Don’t you even have that level of common sense?
If not, how do you breathe?
So, produce the "contractor" work order and associated diagnostic paperwork produced by the "contractor" to prove this.
Also, bring the "contractor" in and put him/her under oath.
Assuming, of course, that the dog didn't eat the repair documents, let alone the "contractor."
In MY dinky little job (i.e., in the real world), if I mishandled even ONE e mail... I'd see the door real quick.
“Only time will tell if those responsible for the misconduct and subsequent destruction of evidence will be called to account criminally.”
Wrong. Not if, but when. Right?
The behavior of the IRS is looking more and more like a cover-up. Byron York reports in The Examiner:
Saying they lost her emails because her computer’s hard drive crashed is like saying you lost your Gmail because your home computer’s disc crashed.
It’s a lie.
“Saying they lost her emails because her computers hard drive crashed is like saying you lost your Gmail because your home computers disc crashed.
Its a lie.”
Yes, to you and me it is obviously a lie.
To the Obama LIV, they merely accept what the generous govt is telling them.
Of course it is a lie, but then you know that all liberals lie, because they can’t help it. It comes natural to them
Server. Server. Server. Quit focusing on a hard-drives.
One question I would ask is how many other drives were lost within the IRS in this time period? If it’s just this one or others involvef with the issue, then that is more evidence. There must be tens of thousands of email supporting computers in IRS offices across the country. What’s the faailure rate in this time period. Bet it’s miniscule.
How is the IRS inept? If anything, it has been spectacularly adept at criminal behavior, as well as the related stonewalling, lying and other measures designed to avoid the torches and pitchforks.
You can bet one thing the IRS would never lose is any of your tax-related income information.
Subpoenas were issued for Lerner's emails. IRS brass did some research into what the emails contained and said "Oh, CRAP!"
Now at my job, my outlook admin is always screaming at me to archive off my emails because I get thousands of them a month relating to operations. I can either archive to my local drive or a network drive, I chose network so it is backed up.
I have no idea what Lerner was actually doing to archive at the time of receipt of subpoena, but I imagine she, at directino of management, made sure her archives were now going to her local drive to leave a trail of plausable (to her and the Dems) deniability. Then, magically, a few days later her computer crashes and the techs are unable (or unwilling) to recover the data - and then they degauss it for obvious reason - nuke it from orbit, it's the only way to be sure. Other hard drives of subpoena targets also suffer a similar magical fate.
Now the IRS still had a big problem, in addition to their six month backup tape cycle, they also had an email archive system. Solution? Get rid of the email archive system (under the guise of response to budget cuts, which they have since claimed) and then let the emails age off the six month cycle (with a few extra months for good measure) while claiming it was a lot of work to restore them and it was taking a long time.
In other words, IMO it had to be orchestrated with involvement of high-level management. If the IRS was acting in good faith and Lerner was archiving to her local drive and it was not recoverable, all they had to do was pull the full backup tape set before the hard drive crash and replace it with fresh blanks. This would have at least allowed recovery of some of the subpoena'd emails. The fact they didn't even take that basic step means this was orchestrated and deliberate.
Any publicly traded company subject to Sarbanes-Oxley law/regulations would be in a far different situation than the IRS.
The FACT that the records could not be produced, and that the company did not make reasonable effort to ensure they could be produced in all circumstances...would subject the company to massive fines and/or dissolution. It would also subject the officers of the company to BOTH civil and criminal penalties.
GOP ought to be running such ads for the next 3 years.
We know that by now, the Government runs by another completely different (relaxed) set of rules.
Individuals and organizations within the Government are NOT held to the same standards of honesty and competence that the ‘real world’ is!
THEY can break every rule on the books and STILL hold their positions and in fact, their dishonesty and incompetence are rewarded.
Not so for us!