Saturday, April 14, 2007

Barbeque At Karl's Place

I think that's an old Seagate drive poking out of the campfire. For anyone who has noit hung around with IT gnomes, people who walk around in the company of trolls wearing T-Shirts or holding mugs which say, "For behold, I am root," here's some news: when you delete an email, it stays on your hard drive. All you're deleting is the pointer to it. And if you delete it locally on your hard drive by re-formatting it, or by physically throwing it into the red hot glowing coals of a roaring fire, that still doesn't delete the mail. If it was ever sent over the internet. There's the server which holds your mail, the recipients' machines who you sent your electronic missives to, and all the servers which serve them.

Not to mention that there is, to comply with law, at least a three-layered back-up system at the White House consisting of mirrored servers, tape drives, and probably redundant off-site servers in a bomb-proof hole deep in the ground.

For Karl Rove to "lose" four years of e-mail through an IT mistake is not just a bad lie, it's actually funny. Funny that they expect people to believe it. For those mails to be gone from White House servers, some serious strong-arming had to be done on IT professionals, people who tend to take their jobs pretty seriously, and who would've known that what they were being told to do was illegal. People who took oaths and signed papers saying they would do no such thing. Then a lot more strong-arming would have to go on at corporations, news rooms, state offices, congressional staffs, lobbying firms, and Internet Service Providers all over the country. Rove's email vaccuuming project would've been a massive undertaking performed under the authority of a State Secrets Act.

And even then, they're still not gone. His tainted mails are still out there, sitting on servers and inboxes all over the place. Also, I know about scandals, fraud, lawyers, crooks, damage control and deleting e-mails from personal and direct experience. And I wouldn't be too surprised if a White House backup tape or two just happened to have rolled behind a desk. Not everybody in government has lost their scruples. And whether or not those mails surface, it's becoming more likely every day that Karl Rove's dead and bloated body will.

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