Some excellent questions for the #IRS about Lois Lerner’s missing emails

Posted by: Phineas on June 15, 2014 at 1:57 pm

**Posted by Phineas

IRS data recovery techie in action

IRS data recovery techie in action

My blog-buddy ST has already covered the mysterious disappearance of former IRS employee Lois Lerner’s emails. I’m sure the Justice Department, per Congressman Camp’s suggestion, will get right to investigating how this could happen, in apparent violation  of standard IRS protocols. Attorney General Eric Holder, that unquestioned paragon of judicial integrity, will no doubt produce a report that lays bare the unvarnished truth.

And while we’re waiting for a certain hot spot to freeze over, independent investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson has some suggested questions for the IRS about Ms. Lerner’s computers and those vanishing emails:

  • Please provide a timeline of the crash and documentation covering when it was first discovered and by whom; when, how and by whom it was learned that materials were lost; the official documentation reporting the crash and federal data loss; documentation reflecting all attempts to recover the materials; and the remediation records documenting the fix. This material should include the names of all officials and technicians involved, as well as all internal communications about the matter.
  • Please provide all documents and emails that refer to the crash from the time that it happened through the IRS’ disclosure to Congress Friday that it had occurred.
  • Please provide the documents that show the computer crash and lost data were appropriately reported to the required entities including any contractor servicing the IRS. If the incident was not reported, please explain why.
  • Please provide a list summarizing what other data was irretrievably lost in the computer crash. If the loss involved any personal data, was the loss disclosed to those impacted? If not, why?
  • Please provide documentation reflecting any security analyses done to assess the impact of the crash and lost materials. If such analyses were not performed, why not?
  • Please provide documentation showing the steps taken to recover the material, and the names of all technicians who attempted the recovery.
  • Please explain why redundancies required for federal systems were either not used or were not effective in restoring the lost materials, and provide documentation showing how this shortfall has been remediated.
  • Please provide any documents reflecting an investigation into how the crash resulted in the irretrievable loss of federal data and what factors were found to be responsible for the existence of this situation.
  • I would also ask for those who discovered and reported the crash to testify under oath, as well as any officials who reported the materials as having been irretrievably lost.

Also read Attkisson’s earlier report on the missing emails.

Since AG Holder will no doubt be busy with his own line of inquiry (1), I offer my own suggestion: these would be excellent questions to include as part of the investigations by a House Select Committee formed to examine the entire IRS scandal. We already have one for Benghazi; why not another? I’d say it’s more than warranted.

How about it, Mr. Speaker?

PS: Lest anyone harbor any smidgen of doubt that the IRS is lying on this matter, consider this observation from Tax Politix (h/t Rick Moran):

Again, the IRS claims it only “has Lerner emails to and from other IRS employees during this time frame…it cannot produce emails written only to or from Lerner and outside agencies or groups, such as the White House, Treasury, Department of Justice, FEC, or Democrat offices.” The ability for an inbox to lose certain emails during the time frame — but not others — is incredible.

To answer an old question, we at least now know how stupid they think we are.

(1) Stonewalling takes time, you know.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

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6 Responses to “Some excellent questions for the #IRS about Lois Lerner’s missing emails”


  1. Xavier says:

    Enough experts have explained why her emails can’t be missing. At this point, I’m beginning to hope they really are missing, because it would be incontrovertible proof of a conspiracy that would make Nixon look like a rube. So go ahead, WH & DOJ & Congress, wipe those drives.

  2. Drew the Infidel says:

    It is interesting to note that the IRS, the taxing entity caught red-handed being involved in politics, is more interested in their Fifth Amendment rights than in our Fourth Amendment protections.

    For once, it would be refreshing to see a Congressional committee perform differently than on a fool’s errand.

    “For there is nothing hid, except to be made manifest; nor is anything secret, except to come to light.”–Mark 4:22

  3. Neo says:

    The explanation given is that for some reason that is known only to the IRS, most e-mails were kept on a centralized computer system (these e-mails do survive) but some specialized list of other e-mails were only stored on the hard drive of the user (these e-mails are missing).

    Why this bifurcated storage system ? Who knows ? It sure does sound mighty convenient, and probably a violation of the federal records act.

  4. Drew the Infidel says:

    Where is Richard “The Iceman” Kuklinski when we need him most?

  5. tommy mc donnell says:

    a lot of you people are computer savvy. why would it take two years to recover lois lerner’s e-mails if they were archived on the irs’ computers?

    the disappearance of these e-mails looks like someone at the irs is guilty of destroying evidence.

  6. Carlos says:

    the disappearance of these e-mails looks like someone at the irs WH is guilty of destroying evidence.

    No offense, tommy, but I suspect this is much more accurate because I can’t see any federal employees acting illegally en masse without instructions from the WH. That’s the hallmark of every scandal so far.