DoD wants $660M to respond to Freedom of Information request on "Hotplugs"

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Note to self: next time I am using a computer with criminal intent, use a dead man switch to disconnect it from power immediately if law enforcement shows up.


Well… that’s ONE way to try to balance the budget.

And discuss says this body is too similar to what I recently posted, but that was because I posted it on the wrong thread.


The DoD uses the Hotplug a lot

No, you cannot conclude that from the response. They say they have to search every contract in the system. There may be only one mention of Hotplug.

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This response seems disingenuous.

That “no method exists for a complete text search” means some method exists for a partial text search. So they could trivially retrieve all searchable contracts that reference Hotplug.

Presumably, the searchable system was a recent development—but presumably, so was Hotplug. You’d expect the simple search to find many, if not most, of the requested documents.


So they could trivially retrieve all searchable contracts that reference Hotplug.

That is a very good point. I write a lot of FOIA requests, and a denial can include useful information to help write a new request.

In this case, they can now ask specifically for records from the system which are text searchable.


Muckrock: “Got any gum?”

DoD: “Well, I have some stuff in my pockets, and a bunch more stuff at home in D.C., but any of it could be gum, so to find it all I’ll need at least a couple days and some round-trip plane tickets.”


Who are these people who get paid $90,000 a year to redact documents?


Sounds like an estimate given by a developer who doesn’t want the requested change to be implemented. “Oh that change? Um, I dunno, like 4 months. Can you go away now?”


That $44/hour makes sense when you split it into line items:

  • $6 /hr to file documents;
  • $8 /hr to distinguish harmless information from sensitive or classified; and
  • $30/hr to not tell anyone.

████████████, ████████████████, ████████████, and ████████████████.


I’m familiar with Dewey, Cheatem & Howe, but who’s the other Partner? Weissmann?


To Do:

Make prototype of ceramic-bladed, spring-loaded, guillotine cutter through which to thread the power cord of computers that DoD might be interested in.


You don’t use minimum wage people to redact documents where loose information gets people killed.

I used to redact documents for prosecutors. For one example, we had a list of witnesses and informants in a mob trial. After I was done a lawyer would review my work, then another lawyer would review that before we released anything.


couldn’t they use XKeyscore for the search? it’s specialized to look for grass blades in haystacks!


My “line items” were just a joke, but this is a good point. $44/hr doesn’t seem unreasonable, really.

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The Hotplug manual is on their web site if you want to see how they handle the AC power. There is a procedure for slitting the cable if you can’t access the wall outlet.


And here I thought freedom cost $1.05

When los federales took computers out of [a local research laboratory that would prefer to remain nameless] they first arranged for an “accidental” local communications blackout, with all phone and internet interrupted throughout the area, and then they literally stripped the outer insulation of the power cords and pushed needles through the individual wires, so that they could attach them to a portable 120VAC power supply, and then carried the whole mess out to their van still powered up. They also put into the newspapers that there had been a total power failure (which there wasn’t).

I supplied the replacement server, which is how I know about it.


Looks like it’s time to invest in some non-industry standard cabling and plugs then

Armored cable going to a 220 dryer plug and a custom outlet.

BUT the actual power comes from the custom Power over Ethernet jack and when the network is disrupted it ignites the thermite on top of the hard drive.