12.02.2013 12:08 PM

Conservatives: deleting emails is “the usual protocol”

Remember how Kooky Kavoukian and the Ontario PCs shrieked and brayed about how the routine deletion of emails was a “crime”? How democracy itself was at risk?  Remember all that?

Well, take a look at this morning’s papers, and the stories about the metastasizing Senate scandal.  Read this bit:

“…When the controversy first erupted into the open in May, Harper’s office assured investigators it would co-operate with them: that included providing documentation such as emails.

But when the RCMP asked again last week, a further check turned up the emails, resulting in Sunday’s letter from the PCO.

The “usual protocol.” And you know what? It is.  That’s why every government office you have ever set foot in – whether it be the OPP, the RCMP, the PCO, or even Kooky Cavoukian’s office – has (a) shredding machines and (b) computer keyboards with the “delete” button still intact in the upper right corner.

The investigation by the OPP into the routine deletion of emails – in a situation where there is no legal penalty for doing so, because it isn’t a crime, for Chrissakes – is a frigging joke. (So, too, the force’s routine leaking of details about their bogus “investigation” to Liberal-hating media outlets.)

But, if Kooky Kavoukian, the Ontario PCs, the OPP and assorted others want something to do, I encourage them to focus their attention on Ottawa.  There, the federal Conservatives have said deleting emails is “the usual protocol.”

So why aren’t they all in jail?



  1. debs says:

    I was wondering about the double standard.

    I also wondered if the sudden appearance of Perrin’s emails related to him being investigated by the bc law society. I guess its simply harper changing his tune again to keep afloat of the damaging headlines. I think the only way to get the real truth out of the PMO office…is to perhaps quarantine the PM:P as he seems to be influencing the stories and narrative.

  2. Paul says:

    I find all this stuff so goofy and such a waste of time (and hence money) ….deleting emails is not a crime as Warren notes ..otherwise every time spam hit your email and you deleted it you would be breaking the law …neither is dumb decisions by politicians ..this thing about jail time blah blah blah for wasting money – every tax payer in the land has an opinion on what is a waste of money … its not a crime , dumb – sometimes, uninformed – sometimes, irresponsible sure, odd yup , weird – sure, unbelievable – bang on ..doesnt make it criminal

    now if you purposely delete stuff that is pertinent to an ongonig investigation thats a different matter , or if you receive a personal direct benefit as a result of decisions you make (see Charbonneau commission) that’s a crime…not sure why all these parties hate each other so much ..yes politics is a blood sport but this constant whining to the police with zero evidence of wrongdoing is tiresome – I’d say its almost criminal

  3. doconnor says:

    It may be the usual protocol doesn’t mean it isn’t a risk to democracy or a violation of the law or something that should be opposed.

  4. CuJoYYC says:

    When the RCMP asked the PMO in September for Perrin’s emails, the PCO advised that emails “had been deleted from the server and were no longer available.”

    You would think that certain political types in the PMO, PCO and elsewhere don’t think that the great unwashed would ever know that, on occasion (rare occasions like hourly, or daily) mail servers are backed up. Why on earth the RCMP didn’t simply demand access to the servers for their forensics team is beyond me?

    C’est la vie.

    • I think that is what has happened no? All the juicy bits in the media came from an affadivit sworn by the RCMP Investigator, Horton. The production order was to compell disclosure by the PMO, which I would presume means unfettered access to the servers. (Correct me if I am wrong)

      • tf says:

        Yes blue green blogger – that is what I understood as well. The documents filed in court by Cpl Horton were to request further access.
        And as we all know, nothing is ever deleted from our computers; all info can be retrieved.
        I think that is why the PCO has “discovered” these emails: better to hand them over before they are discovered. It stops the RCMP from looking further; who knows what they’ll find.
        I don’t trust that all the emails have been released – in fact, I don’t trust any of it!

  5. Tired of it All says:

    Well, coz rules and accountability are for progressives. Oh, and hey, there was a Sponsorship Scandal, right?

  6. smelter rat says:

    In Manitoba at least, all gov’t emails are a part of the official record, and as such gov’t employees have been instructed to ensure that the record is left intact. Usually this is done behind the scenes, using an offsite backup server. of course, people routinely delete out of office messages, personal messages etc. all the time, but as far as I know, even those are subject to automatic backup. Noting ever really goes away in the virtual world.

  7. !o! says:

    Wonder what this unrelated litigation is…

  8. Andy says:

    Yup…there’s always a way to retrieve deleted stuff…it doesn’t go away. It’s funny how we’re always told to keep tax files for at least 7 years after…just in case(!), and yet gov’t biz emails can go away anytime. I’m thinking the cops got hold of the PMO one more time and said something like this, “Y’know…nothing is ever completely deleted, and we’ve got a guy who can get ANYTHING back, sooooo…if we hafta go that route…that’ll be a bigger issue for ya”.

  9. debs says:

    perhaps Pierre poutine dropped by and doctored the emails to make Harper look blameless. Hopefully the RCMP have some IT specialists who can determine whats been tampered with and when.

  10. Lynn says:

    In the spirit of the season, and with apologies to the “Grinch”, everyday more “stink, stank, stunk”. Gosh, the aroma is getting more and more rank around the PMO, all those bodies under the bus and other assorted rotting things are creating quite a smell.

  11. Ian Howard says:

    If there is to be any faith in any level of government all emails must self destruct within fifteen seconds of opening.

    The email records of both Harper and McGuinty reinforce the notion that our governments are totally out of control and barely function beyond a political level. The need to create and sustain an image for political parties and politicians is the dominant force in decision making and little else appears to matter.

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