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Somebody’s Filed a Freedom of Information Act Request To Find Out More about Squirrel-Related Power Outages

It's called the Freedom of Information Act for a reason, after all -- the hippies finally got something right.


America’s enemies are targeting our power infrastructure and the government is hiding it from us. And no, I don’t mean terrorists — I’m clearly talking about the squirrels who keep chewing through our power lines, as the NYT reported last week. Thank god one courageous woman is ready to get to the bottom of this consquirrelacy. Conspirasquirrel? Whichever.

The woman in question, Boing Boing reader Heather Akers-Healy, recently submitted a Freedom of Information act request to the Department of Homeland Security by way of the third party website All requests made through the site are completely transparent and guided through the request process by a team of experts.

Here’s the full text of the request, which can be found here:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

Copies of any and all documents relating to the Department of Homeland Security’s efforts to decrease the impact of squirrels upon our brittle national infrastructure, as detailed in the New York Times: I would also like any documentation produced by the Department of Energy or the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to DHS relating to enhanced defense in depth against squirrel related service interruptions. Please also produce any processing notes compiled in completing this request.

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.


Heather Akers-Healy

Only time will tell whether or not the Department of Homeland Security will respond to this important life-or-death matter. Although, to be fair, they’re probably pretty busy right now with… all of the other stuff that’s going wrong in America right now.

Props to Heather Akers-Healy, at the very least. She may not be the hero we need right now, but she’s the one we deserve. You know, to save us from the Bane squirrels. Glen still wants those photoshopped pictures, by the way.

(Via Maggie Koerth-Baker image via Kevin Chartrel)

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