Leftists, save your contempt of Rick Perry and Michelle Bachmann. Rightists, here’s your real Big Government target. It’s called the Securities and Exchange Commission, and according to Matt Taibbi, it’s been shredding documents on potential criminal investigations for years:
…the practice of destroying [matters under inquiry] had begun as early as 1993, and has resulted in at least 9,000 case files being destroyed. For all the thousands of tips that had come in to the SEC, and the thousands of interviews that had been conducted by the agency’s staff, all that remained were a few perfunctory lines for each case. The mountains of evidence gathered were no longer in existence.
The SEC also had the unfortunate habit of asking financial entities to investigate themselves; these same entities would later reward the diligence of SEC chairmen and their investigative units by offering them jobs.