The Locally Owned Voice of the Capital Region

IRS's lost emails case justifies big penalty for guilty

Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Text Size: A | A

IRS's lost emails case justifies big penalty for guilty

Re June 14 article, "Lost emails by IRS anger congressional investigators": Missing two years of emails -- yikes. Nixon was impeached in part because of 18 minutes of missing tapes.

Hey Democrats, it's a two-way street, as much as you would like it one way. Sens. Carl Levin, Chuck Schumer and Barbara Boxer told the IRS and IRS Director Lois Lerner to go after conservative groups or anyone that did not agree with the Obama administration.

This is over the top, along with a president who cannot make a decisive decision. Look at Iraq, Syria and Ukraine. As a citizen, I'm calling for resignations or impeachments and jail time for all involved.

Wake up America. No one is above the law.

Albert Marvell


Leaders need to take U.S. back to the top

Apparently the world is aware of the fact that we have a mouse in the White House. I voted for President Obama, but I'm becoming very disappointed in him for his lack of backbone when it comes time to make tough decisions.

Let's start with Syria. Then there's the invasion of Crimea, when Russian President Vladimir Putin flat-out lied about what the troops were doing when they amassed at the border. A blind mouse could see that it wasn't a simple military exercise.

There is a flood of people, thousands of them children, crossing our borders. Before the year is over, we will no longer be the world's largest economy since we surpassed the United Kingdom back in the 1700s. And now, Iraq is exploding again.

When we destroyed Hitler's Nazi empire in World War II, it never rose again. It sputters along in small wannabe groups, but that was a true victory for the United States and its allies.

I do not relish the thought of more war, and I definitely don't agree with war-monger Sen. John McCain. But if we continue to be weak when the world's aggressors flex their muscles, then we are in deep, deep trouble.

If so many people can cross our borders on a daily basis, God knows who else is crossing them.

I don't like to fight, never have. But, sometimes you have to, and you can't wait until the attack on yourself happens. You have to show some muscle and maybe end the fight before it begins. Our leaders need to stop fighting each other and return this country to the powerful world leader that it once was.

A house divided will fall.

Kenneth Kimball


Washington's Prayer could help nation

With the 4th of July coming up and our thoughts on the brave men and women who are protecting our country, how could killings and other horrible situations be happening in our town and elsewhere? We obviously are forgetting our relationship with the Divine Creator of the world.

In one of my old prayer books, I found this beautiful prayer written by one of our past presidents.

Washington's Prayer for the Nation: "Almighty God, we make our earnest prayer that Thou wilt keep the United States in Thy holy protection: that Thou wilt incline the hearts of the citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to government, and entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another and for their fellow citizens of the United States at large. And finally that Thou wilt most graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility, and pacific temper of mind which were the characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed religion, and without a humble imitation of whose example in these things we can never hope to be a happy nation. Grant our supplication, we beseech Thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen."

My father fought in World War I and my two brothers fought in World War II to protect our nation from all evils.

If you print this prayer and people not only read it but pray it, our nation could return to being the most wonderful nation in the world.

Louise J. Di Leva


It's very difficult to get rid of old emails

Lois Lerner, director of the IRS Exempt Organizations Unit, claims that she lost all of her work emails prior to 2011 because her computer crashed. I call shenanigans.

My employer of 14 years is a not-very-well-known nonprofit that handles large sums of money and is often mistaken for a governmental body. We do not lose emails because:

1) Although our computers do have a copy of every email we receive and send, these are not the copies of record; those reside on the email server.

2) The email server has a twin. They both have a copy of every email.

3) Those email servers are backed up to other media.

4) All emails are copied to an archive immediately and kept for a period of time governed by both a minimum retention time and other legal requirements.

As such, there exists no fewer than five copies of any given email. This, or some variant of it, is the fairly normal way of managing email by an IT department.

My personal email has some similar, but less-strenuous behavior: If my computer crashes, I can repair or replace it, give it the details of my email account, and voila! All my emails come back. That's because my email provider stores them on its server!

Tax departments are, historically, some of the best record-keepers in government. Why? Because there's money involved.

No, I do not believe that Lois Lerner's desktop computer crashing lost her a single email. Her email got lost because either she, or someone in her vicinity in the organization, ordered that it should be so. Her excuse is flimsy and does not pass the sniff test.

Glenn C. Lasher, Jr.


Thorne would bring solutions to Senate

There is a breath of fresh air running for the 49th District state Senate seat this year, and her name is Madelyn Thorne.

We met through the Schenectady Business and Professional Woman's Club many years ago and worked on several committees, where I found Madelyn to be very smart, logical and caring. Madelyn was always looking for a solution, and you could imagine the wheels turning in her head when presented with a challenge.

This is a woman who, personally, has faced some of the issues people in our communities are facing today.

She didn't like it and she wants to change it. Madelyn Thorne has much to offer in a time when we need someone who will ask, "How can I help?" or, "What do you need?" and will then do their best to follow through.

Listen to her, find out what she stands for, and you will feel that breath of fresh air we so desperately need.

Elaine Santore


Letters Policy

The Gazette wants your opinions on public issues.

There is no strict word limit, though letters under 200 words are preferred.

All letters are subject to editing for length, style and fairness, and we will run no more than one letter per month from the same writer.

Please include your signature, address and day phone for verification.

For information on how to send, see bottom of this page.

For more letters, visit our Web site:



June 24, 2014
10:35 a.m.
+0 votes
pollywog says...

Poor Mr Marvell thinks that a lone Senator or two can give instructions to a federal agency. Put the pipe down, pal.The IRS was actually scrutinizing liberal groups, ones with "98%" "Occupy___" and other similar names, and as many as the far-right groups. The new PACs have to prove they provide community services to even exist. Many of the so-called "Patriot" groups did nothing but politics. Since Mr Marvell also vilifies the President for not starting wars in Iraq, Syria and Ukraine one can only assume he has stock in Halliburton and is missing the big, fat dividends from the illegal wars started by Bush. At work I had my computer crash more than once. What would be alarming is finding that no computers crashed. As a citizen I am calling for truth and facts.

June 24, 2014
11:59 a.m.
-1 votes
wmarincic says...

I guess pollywog doesn't have anything to "occupy" today....

June 25, 2014
6:42 p.m.
+0 votes
pollywog says...

If the unenlightened would just learn a little bit more they might know that the federal government, like most state and local governments, often have antiquated equipment. The IRS did not have the capacity to back-up data; the poor fools were using a tape for back-up, one step above the ancient scribe. The back-up tapes were re-used most likely because it is impossible to purchase new ones since the technology is about 20 years old. One of the problems with the VA is that is uses ancient computer programs and has not been provided with the funds to up-date. Why? Ask the Republicans who voted down budget requests for the VA while giving the Dept. of Defense more money than they asked for. You might be horrified to know the amount of data that is backed-up in hard copy just because of a lack of computer space. The IRS, for instance, does not have "cloud" storage like you do.

June 28, 2014
3:51 p.m.
+0 votes
robbump says...

pollywog: You are wrong! I've worked in IT for almost 40 years old and that "old" tape technology is still in use by government and business alike and magnetic media has never been priced lower than it is today. It's no longer stocked at your local Staples, but it remains easily available.
When IRS says things were unretrievable, who did they have looking to do it? The guy 2 desks down who is the local office "guru", or a real specialist? IRS would never lack for talent and would quickly recover data from MY crashed drive if they were pursuing a case against me.
They should be using the same technology and zeal to recover their own missing data.


columnists & blogs

Log into

Forgot Password?