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Author Topic: The Inner Party strikes back
scifibum
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I can't wait until the GOP starts holding hearings on whether Lois Lerner was using her government email account for private conversations.
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Seneca
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It is grossly inappropriate and probably grounds for firing to conduct personal Web browsing and/or personal email or messaging during work time or on work equipment and accounts.

As for the fantasy, the only fantasy is that she is innocent. It's pretty clear there was immense wrongdoing here.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
It is grossly inappropriate and probably grounds for firing to conduct personal Web browsing and/or personal email or messaging during work time or on work equipment and accounts.

I've worked in IT administration for years. Everyone with a desk job would be out of work if that were even remotely true. Some places try to enforce it more than others, only those with the most draconian lockdowns that prevent it from happening at all manage to partially succeed at it.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
As for the fantasy, the only fantasy is that she is innocent. It's pretty clear there was immense wrongdoing here.
And yet not a shed of actual evidence to to support that claim, with plenty of evidence against it.
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scifibum
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quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
It is grossly inappropriate and probably grounds for firing to conduct personal Web browsing and/or personal email or messaging during work time or on work equipment and accounts.

As for the fantasy, the only fantasy is that she is innocent. It's pretty clear there was immense wrongdoing here.

You're simply wrong. The IRS has an explicit policy that allows personal usage of those facilities (with restrictions of course).
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
It is grossly inappropriate and probably grounds for firing to conduct personal Web browsing and/or personal email or messaging during work time or on work equipment and accounts.

I've worked in IT administration for years. Everyone with a desk job would be out of work if that were even remotely true. Some places try to enforce it more than others, only those with the most draconian lockdowns that prevent it from happening at all manage to partially succeed at it.
Give me a break. It's simple network admin tools to monitor what programs are used, what websites are browsed to and keystroke history. Many private companies terminate for personal Web browsing and email. At the Sheriff's office we terminated a unionize secretary for doing that.

and ALL evidence points to her wrongdoing. From her own admission, to the obvious data purge, to her pleading the 5th and now to her obvious contempt of a group of citizens she hated.

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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by scifibum:
quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
It is grossly inappropriate and probably grounds for firing to conduct personal Web browsing and/or personal email or messaging during work time or on work equipment and accounts.

As for the fantasy, the only fantasy is that she is innocent. It's pretty clear there was immense wrongdoing here.

You're simply wrong. The IRS has an explicit policy that allows personal usage of those facilities (with restrictions of course).
Link please? I worked in various government jobs for over 30 years. I have never seen a government job that allowed that and I cannot imagine the IRS with all of the sensitive info on their computers, devices and servers would allow that for mere security if not productivity.
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scifibum
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It's pretty easy to find:
http://www.irs.gov/irm/part10/irm_10-008-027.html

quote:
The expanding use of Information Technology (IT) in the workplace increasingly offers new opportunities to meet the IRS’s mission objectives, as well as agency values, not the least of which are those directed at providing a positive work-life balance and supportive environment for IRS employees. This includes, among other things, the privilege of limited personal use of Government IT resources...
The funny thing is that I know you're going to review the document to see if there was arguably a violation of this policy with the snide comments in that email you mentioned. And you know what? There probably was some petty violation.

But:

1) No, it's not against the rules, generally, for employees to use the IRS-provided email and internet access for personal purposes.

Note: this is pretty standard for office workers.

2) There's no reason any petty violation of this policy (such as sending a personal email while on duty) is a matter that should particularly concern anyone, let alone Congress.

And yet, as you have modeled here, I'm sure that someone in Congress will decide it's a matter of grave concern and vow to investigate until the full truth is found out.

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scifibum
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You know, if obvious contempt for a group one hates is clear evidence of wrongdoing, you're one of the worst rogues I've ever encountered, Seneca.

And you work in the public safety sector, where you might encounter big-government types or anti-gun types every day - how can we trust you to do your duty without a dangerous bias against people you hate?

OMG, call Issa, we need some hearings.

[ July 30, 2014, 06:10 PM: Message edited by: scifibum ]

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Seneca
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I don't work in the IRS and when I did have a job with the Sheriff's office I never used their equipment or accounts to slander whole swaths of citizens.

As for "petty," that seems to merely be your opinion and is nothing more than an attempt to trivialize this grossly inappropriate conduct.
So if and when Jeb Bush gets elected and his admin starts doing similar things I guess we'll see what you consider to be "petty."

[ July 30, 2014, 06:20 PM: Message edited by: Seneca ]

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Wayward Son
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quote:
and ALL evidence points to her wrongdoing. From her own admission, to the obvious data purge, to her pleading the 5th and now to her obvious contempt of a group of citizens she hated.
Only from you POV, Seneca.

If her "admission" was any good, well, we wouldn't be bothering looking for e-mails, would we? [Wink]

The "data purge" was obviously accidental. The hard disc was old, they tried to repair it, and it happened before any major scandal broke out.

Her pleading the 5th only indicates she is trying to protect herself from something--perhaps the Congressional kangaroo court itself.

And if obvious contempt for a group of citizens she hated indicated malfeasance, then half of the Republicans in the House should turn themselves in immediately. [LOL]

Only if you are already convinced she is guilty does any of this point to being guilty. Try giving her a modicum of the benefit of the doubt, and you'll see how this all becomes a house of cards.

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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:
quote:
and ALL evidence points to her wrongdoing. From her own admission, to the obvious data purge, to her pleading the 5th and now to her obvious contempt of a group of citizens she hated.
Only from you POV, Seneca.

If her "admission" was any good, well, we wouldn't be bothering looking for e-mails, would we? [Wink]

The "data purge" was obviously accidental. The hard disc was old, they tried to repair it, and it happened before any major scandal broke out.

Her pleading the 5th only indicates she is trying to protect herself from something--perhaps the Congressional kangaroo court itself.

And if obvious contempt for a group of citizens she hated indicated malfeasance, then half of the Republicans in the House should turn themselves in immediately. [LOL]

Only if you are already convinced she is guilty does any of this point to being guilty. Try giving her a modicum of the benefit of the doubt, and you'll see how this all becomes a house of cards.

How conveniently you left out the letter that preceded the data purge by mere days. The only reason she felt emboldened to try and crash her drive was because the letter wasn't directly targeting exactly what she was doing, that's why she no doubt felt she could get away with it and call it a normal drive failure.

taken in context, everything together is too much. Maybe one or two of these alone could be explained away but not all of them.

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scifibum
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quote:
Originally posted by Seneca:
I don't work in the IRS and when I did have a job with the Sheriff's office I never used their equipment or accounts to slander whole swaths of citizens.

As for "petty," that seems to merely be your opinion and is nothing more than an attempt to trivialize this grossly inappropriate conduct.
So if and when Jeb Bush gets elected and his admin starts doing similar things I guess we'll see what you consider to be "petty."

There is a clear difference between using the email account to conduct partisan campaign activities, and using the email account to send a personal email while on the clock. The former is a serious violation, the latter is a petty violation.

It's not clear that expressing a partisan OPINION is a violation of the policy. If it is, it's a petty one.

The email in question shows that Lerner was willing to join in denigrating a sub-group that someone else had already designated as extreme crazies. That's probably inappropriate to do using work email, but it's not a huge thing.

Is all this sturm und drang justified by catching someone agreeing with someone else's description of right-wing-crazies?

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Wayward Son
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quote:
So if and when Jeb Bush gets elected and his admin starts doing similar things I guess we'll see what you consider to be "petty."
And if you'll just look back to the Reagan Administration, you can review what real corruption and not being "petty" was like.
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TomDavidson
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quote:
She apologized for wrongdoing...
Boy, that horse is dead. Stop whipping it. You can't ride it. If it were a dog, it would not hunt.

That she bowed to political pressure and apologized for a single, very specific sort of mistake does not mean that she admitted to some kind of widespread conspiracy.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
Give me a break. It's simple network admin tools to monitor what programs are used, what websites are browsed to and keystroke history.
Monitoring this stuff sort of thing used to be my job, at four different institutions. At all four of them, merely sending personal email from your work account would never cause problems, unless:

a) someone suspected that you were spending too much time surfing the Web and sending personal email and asked IT to audit the total time spent;
b) someone hit a site that was specifically flagged as problematic (usually porn) and as a result we received an automatic alert and conducted a routine audit;
c) someone pissed off a superior and that superior, being a petty dickwad, asked us to audit his or her employee's internet usage;
d) someone sent a remarkably offensive personal email that, attached to a work account, resulted in a complaint to the company.

Sending personal emails from a work account, while officially verboten for a host of legal reasons, is as common as not punching out when going to the bathroom.

--------

quote:
And if you'll just look back to the Reagan Administration, you can review what real corruption and not being "petty" was like.
You don't need to go that far back. The Bush Administration was briefly scandalized when it was discovered that staffers were using Gmail and Yahoo accounts to discuss the timing of terror alerts for political purposes, to avoid having those emails captured for posterity.
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AI Wessex
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It was brief only because the GOP controlled both Houses of Congress. Were Issa manning the watchtower back then with the vigor and dedication he shows now, that also would have been the biggest scandal since Watergate.
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Seneca
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I agree that it is sad that the Republicans under Bush protected him from dealing with the consequences of his wrongdoing. Bush could have and should have been impeached for any number of illegal acts he committed. And the GOP standing by him has helped create a more partisan atmosphere where no matter what Obama does wrong the democrats defend him and all critics of Obama are wrong. It is very sad. It is also not a good reason to give Obama a free pass while he is still in office.
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TomDavidson
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By "Obama," you mean "Lois Lerner" here, right?
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AI Wessex
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You're forgetting the "one degree" rule [Smile] .
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Wayward Son
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quote:
I agree that it is sad that the Republicans under Bush protected him from dealing with the consequences of his wrongdoing. Bush could have and should have been impeached for any number of illegal acts he committed. And the GOP standing by him has helped create a more partisan atmosphere where no matter what Obama does wrong the democrats defend him and all critics of Obama are wrong. It is very sad. It is also not a good reason to give Obama a free pass while he is still in office.
I am happy that you hold Republican Presidents to the same standards that you hold Democrat Presidents. But it is disheartening to know that, once a Republican President is in office, he will not be held to the same level of scrutiny as any Democratic one--because neither the Republicans nor the Democrats will do so. [Frown]

But it would be heartening if you held the Republicans in office to the same level of scrutiny and integrity that you hold Obama. How about talking about the lies that Issa has told about Obama, even on this very subject? Should he get away with those? How about the lies about Benghazi, and Obamacare? The systematic deceptions that are going on about those subjects should be setting off your alarms left and right. I mean, if you can connect the dots about Lerner's misdeeds, how much more should you see about Issa and Boehner and the rest?? [Eek!]

I know we should hold the President to the highest level of ethics. But it's hard when everyone of his critics are held to a much, much lower level, and no one seems to notice. [Frown]

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Greg Davidson
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Heck, how about even holding ourselves to the same standards of integrity that we are asking of others?
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Seneca
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Don't look here...

quote:
An IRS watchdog is acknowledging that thousands of documents related to requests between the White House and the tax agency for unauthorized tax information exist --- but says it must withhold them all due to privacy concerns.

The revelation by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) came as part of a lawsuit filed by non-profit group Cause of Action, which began investigating whether the IRS was improperly sharing taxpayer information with the White House in 2012.

Cause of Action originally filed a Freedom of Information Act request asking the IRS to turn over any documents, if they existed, related to correspondence between the IRS and the White House about requests for tax returns for individuals or businesses.

When the IRS said it was unable to do so because of constraints in the Internal Revenue Code, the group filed the lawsuit. A judge ruled that the IRS must turn over any relevant documents to Cause of Action by Dec. 1 to comply with the FOIA request.

On Tuesday, an attorney with TIGTA wrote a letter to Cause of Action, and acknowledged that the watchdog had located “2,509 pages of documents potentially responsive to your request.” Of those, TIGTA confirmed that 2,043 were in fact responsive to the request. 

However, TIGTA said it could not release the documents to the group, citing the tax code.

“These pages consist of return information protected by 26 U.S.C. § 6103 and may not be disclosed absent an express statutory exception,” the letter said. “Because no such exception exists here, we are withholding those.”

Dan Epstein, a spokesman for Cause of Action, told FoxNews.com he believes that the IRS “essentially ignored the order of the court” with this declaration and that the group is considering the best path forward to force the IRS to disclose the documents.

However, Epstein said that the group feels that TIGTA’s acknowledgment of the documents is “absolutely” a victory in their investigation. He said the sheer number of relevant documents indicates that wrongdoing occurred on the part of both the IRS and the White House.

“That indicates scandal,” he said.


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D.W.
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Unless the White House has the legal right to make the request and have them delivered.

(I honestly don't know if they do or not.)

The fact that they call them "unauthorized" implies they don't? It makes sense that TIGTA couldn't turn them over.

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Wayward Son
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If your tax information happens to be included in one of those 2043 pages, would you still want the IRS to hand it over to the organization Cause of Action?
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AI Wessex
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I think Seneca and others like him want rules of privacy to be violated if they think it will further a social or political agenda they pursue. Perhaps the question should be asked of Seneca whether he thinks the documents should be released if they contain his personal tax information or that of any quasi-political organization he is a member of?
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Seneca
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God forbid they redact personal info and the release the documents...

You know, like virtually every other FOIA request...

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scifibum
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It looks like we're going solely on information the Cause of Action group has put out there. Does anybody know where we can find any of the actual TIGTA statements or court orders?
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D.W.
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What would be left of such a document post redaction?
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Seneca
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quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
What would be left of such a document post redaction?

Who was requesting it and why.
Who was providing it.
What kinds of docs and the subject matter they covered stripped of specific personal info.
Crosstalk related to the above points.
Volume.
Intent.
Etc. I could go on but that should suffice.

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D.W.
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Documentation of the request (and whether it was provided or not) makes perfect sense. Being provided the object of the request (what it seemed to be outlying in your post) does not.
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Seneca
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quote:
any documents related to
For this investigation you need:
The requests
Back and forth chatter
The documents themselves with specific personal identifiers redacted

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D.W.
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I'm with you on all but the last item. These documents ARE specific personal identifiers. The entire document should be held back.

Request for D.W.'s tax information.
Request granted on date xx/xx/xxxx
Files delivered on xx/xx/xxxx
Files recieved by _______.

If those forms are subject to FIA then you can release them as well. Sounds like they are not.

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Seneca
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But we need to know what the documents actually are to prove that the law was broken. They can easily remove someone's name, address and other personal info and still see what kind of info the document is used for.
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D.W.
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What tax info form of yours would you be comfortable having the local or national news outlet haveing? (and more importantly publishing)

If the White House isn't allowed to have ANYONE's info, just showing that they got SOMEONE's info is enough.

If the White House is allowed to see the info and those trying to look for abuse of power are not... then screw those guys.

Am I missing something important here?

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AI Wessex
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quote:
But we need to know what the documents actually are to prove that the law was broken.
Since when is that something you would be able to do? While we're at it, can you send me the serial numbers of all of your guns so I can verify that none of them were used in a crime? Oh, your fingerprints, too. Thanks.
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D.W.
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Oddly, I think you are more likely to be able to get that info about someone than their tax info AI. [Razz]
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AI Wessex
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Mebbe so, so why is Seneca complaining that he can't get someone's tax info request? This seems completely politically motivated, which is what he seems to be complaining about happening to other people. Odd that being so strongly dedicated to "freedom" makes someone act in almost the opposite manner ;(.
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Seneca
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Oddly enough the government doesn't have the same privacy protections as citizens. Wow! Who'da thunk?

Redacting personal info from these docs would be easy, but the forms themselves have to be identified so we know what kind of forms they are!

The notion that the government is somehow protected from civilian oversight and transparency is amusing.

[ December 03, 2014, 05:18 PM: Message edited by: Seneca ]

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D.W.
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If there was anything left after "personal information" was removed from "tax documents" then I agree with you Seneca. The nature of the document makes them an exception to the typical document request for FIA in my mind. No clue if that's the law or not.
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