The other NSA story not yet in the press

Discussion in 'Think Tank' started by The Internet, Nov 21, 2013.

  1. The Internet Member

    An intelligence organization is going to have an input side and an output side. Ed Snowden exposed the NSA's vast data collections program. But we have yet to hear much about the NSA's dissemination program.

    It's no secret that post-WWII, the CIA developed a network of friendly editors and journalists willing to run stories on the agency's behalf. I personally don't have a problem with this provided that the information is of little consequence or the distortions are short lived. I'd also like to think that incidents of planted information are relatively rare. We want journalists not to worry too much about who might like or dislike their work over at some Federal agency. Too much cooperative effort will compromise that independent spirit.

    Oh the other thing I need is no fucking red flags. No red flags that moonbats are making decisions within our intelligence services. Moonbats want certain things real bad and will cherry pick and use emotional language to manipulate others. They don't like to be contradicted and therefore once in power they bring in only friendly faces. This is how they ruin everything.

    But I digress. Back to the matter of the NSA's information dissemination program.

    The major target audience for the NSA's output is this guy:

    Barack Obama was an attorney with a particular interest in Constitutional law prior to his entry into politics. He expressed serious concerns about the legality of holding people indefinitely at Guantanamo and promised that if he were elected president, he would do everything in his power to solve the Guantanamo problem. Looks like that didn't happen though. Why not?

    I have to speculate but it's the only speculation I can come up with that makes sense to me: One day not long after taking office a few people from the CIA/NSA met with Obama and said, "Mr. President, we're going to explain why you aren't likely to close Guantanamo anytime soon..." They laid out some information about who was being detained and how their release might prove harmful to the US. And that was that.

    Even if my speculation in this particular case is off the mark, surely intelligence determines executive decisions. Intelligence must therefore be a greater power within the executive branch than even the President.

    The second major target audience for the output from our intelligence services is Congress, particularly the intelligence oversight committee. The third audience is us, the unwashed masses.

    This thread is for us. I would really like to know what the CIA/NSA have been feeding us recently and why. Leaks welcome. Tidbits in the news that look like talking points or memes promoted by the NSA welcome. I don't expect a lot of good stuff right away. But the thread will be here as a handy place to put some infos and clues as they arise.
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  2. Anonymous Member

    Such as telling us that we can have more coverage at less cost and how it's all the insurance company's fault that things are not peachy keen, never mind that Obama made promises he knew, KNEW, were false.

    Sounds to me that your are defining this president and administration, all smoke and mirrors and no substance. Obama is very good at cherry picking and using emotional language to get his way.
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  3. Anonymous Member

    My understanding is based on reports that Congress refused to support Obama's plans for Guantanamo.
    Your speculation could be valid, but I think you could reduce your speculation quotient by doing some serious, (time-consuming) searches for "Guantanamo: + Congress + Obama."
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  4. The Internet Member

    I was hoping the first response would not be a derail. Probably my bad due to the big ass photo of Obama.
  5. The Internet Member

    Thank you kind sir. Mostly I just wanted to say that the intelligence services are super important because executive decisions rely upon intelligence.
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  6. Anonymous Member

    NSA is FULL of moonbats who see communists terrorists everywhere. Do you really expect a secretive organization to act rationally? Please, nigga. They get their money by seeing terrorists everywhere and ignoring one important fact... teh USA is the biggest terrorist of the world today. You're the ones raining Weapons of Mass Destruction down on the heads of people around the world.

    You should be stopping yourselves from exporting your destructive brand of anti terrorism, which looks remarkably like empire building to me.

    Dismantle NSA, it doesn't have any useful functions, and in fact is fueling the anger and adding to the chaos.
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  7. The Internet Member

    I feel you bro. But as the night manager at McD's the only thing I"m dismantling is the fry cooker.
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  8. Anonymous Member

    And I didn't intend to come across as pro-Obama. I was just trying to be fair.

    Agree about the role played by intelligence services but I don't think executive decisions depend exclusively on them. Wall Street (I loathe this metonymy, or is it a synechdoche?) and the military establishment have got to be key players, and then there's always...

  9. Hey, Trout Mask Replica is a Beefheart Classic! Personally I always preferred Clear Spot, but that's just me....
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  10. Anonymous Member

    Wiki leaks released some information about who was held in gitmo. From what i read and understood, these were NOT very nice people. Some of them were very dangerous, and were give over to us by countries that are normally antagonistic towards the US. Otherwise, i only know stories about gitmo from friends that were stationed there. The thing they told me, was that the inmates there would throw a mixture of urine and fecal matter on them. It is a navy shore duty, perhaps you could find more information from sailors and marines that were stationed there.
  11. The Internet Member

    Thing is, the people running Gitmo went to Abu Ghraib to "Gitmo-ize" that detention facility. By "Gitmo-ize" they meant putting dog collars on prisoners for the lulz. Maybe it's not so wise to let such heavy S&M tops decide who is good and bad. Maybe due process, evidence, a court room, and a jury would be better.

    I used to think, hey some stuff has to be secret because we live in a world with bad guys and need to stay one step ahead. Somebody's got to be out there making decisions I don't hear about. I can live with that because, well, I have to.

    But I don't think the people in the CIA /NSA are necessarily the brightest or the best any longer. I think some strange shit is going on in there. New Age "leadership" bullshit and New American Century and First Earth Battalion and vitamins and maybe even Hubbard. These intelligence guys seem to like alternative medicine a lot. I bet the "DOX or GTFO" types do not get the big promotions.

    Dog collars as an official CIA idea. Just think about that for five minutes.
  12. Anonymous Member

    There was never a time when the CIA was a 'good' organization. It has always been corrupt and evil. Consider one of their first ops was to overthrow Iran, the effects of which we are still feeling 60 years later.

    THe CIA recruited those who were connected. The precursor group, OSS, was nicknamed 'Oh So Social' since they recruited people from the elite east coast ivy league colleges. Not the best and the brightest, but the most connected to the most powerful, not a meritocracy but an aristocracy.

    IOW, not the best and brightest, but the most connected and entitled were the ones who ran the CIA. Not exactly the base on which to build a foreign policy for the ages.
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  13. Anonymous Member

    that explains a lot sadly.
  14. The Internet Member

    Intelligence is a discipline concerned with data collection, aggregation, interpretation, verification, testing, and finally, bayesian inference as the basis for action in the world. The processes involved in all those steps should impose a self-correcting quality to the effort, just as we see a self correcting quality to scientific work.

    As long as the people involved understand, "dox or gtfo," it shouldn't matter who they are. They might be commies or tea baggers or Rothchilds or whatever when they start working there. The work itself should drive changes in their way of thinking over time, making them less wrong than before.

    However, humans are prone to cultishness by nature and cultishness thrives in secrecy. Cultishness blunts the self correcting aspect of rational inquiry. So it's good to have separate groups doing intelligence work with some overlap in effort so relative outsiders can comment upon the work of insiders.

    Redundancy means less efficiency and greater costs but in peace time it's worth the price. And by "peace time," I mean it's not WWII when the entire nation is on rice and beans and devoted to victory. Last I heard we were trying to reduce redundancy within our intelligence services, to improve communication and cut costs. All fine and good so long as a culture of internal trolling and criticism is not fucked up. But what do I know about the CIA. I'm just an idiot on the Internet.

    A guy I know from work grew up in the Ukraine and he's basically scared the shit out of me with his KGB stories. It's peace time over there but this intelligence monster that they build still runs as if it's war time. No wants. Must stop before we create a similar monster here.

    Time to look at how that whole CIA thing works. That's all I'm saying. I'm not interested in dismantling anything at this point.
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  15. Anonymous Member

    And yet it doesn't work out that way in real life. Makes you think.
    If I make a mistake with my research in the private sector, my company falters, and I am held accountable.
    This rarely happens in the public sector. Do you think maybe that is an important datum?
    Self correcting science only works where the physical sciences are involved, where you can keep all else equal while experimenting with one variable. That is patently inpossible in the social sciences. Hence, the mechanism used to keep the hard sciences in line (self correcting) does not operate in the social sciences. That puts the onus on us to start from true premises. Otherwise, the same dox will result in different recommendations.

    This is rather naive, IMHO. Dox can be interpreted in different ways. We can be given the same dox and reach different conclusions. That is what it means to be human. We had different underlying assumptions about how the world works. And this isn't engineering, where we can reasonable expect parts to work with each other as designed, we are dealing with people.

    Indeed, the government is the preeminent cult in society today. And we can see that government is really good at enforcing its right to keep secrets from the people paying for the intel work.

    We know how the CIA works, or rather, how it fails to work. This is not in question. The question is how to do get rid of it. Again, if it is funded by government it will never have to answer for its failures.

    Holding politicians accountable for idiotic programs is not allowed in government, so it can never clear out the deadwood without a fire, ie, some sort of dismantling. I don't want riots or blood in the streets any more than you do. But as long as there are people who can take our money and use it against our best interests, then we will have this problem.

    TI, you seem to think that if the government enacts a program, there was a good objective reason for it.
    Yet, the history shows this rarely to be true.
    As that CNN doctor found out recently, to give one example, he figured that the USG had good reason to put marijuana on the Schedule 1 list. When he did the research, he found that it was placed there because the man in charge, who had no evidence at all, felt that research would validate his feeling that pot is too dangerous to allow.

    That, in a nutshell, is how government operates, on human whim. The justifications come later.
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  16. The Internet Member

    Ok anti-government guy, I think you are talking in a way that will result in bigger government for everyone which I don't want. Paradoxical I know, but that's what I think. You're just too general and hopeless.

    I've been beavering up some dox on the CIA but I'm now afraid to post them because you are here. You will say, "see I told you so you need to get rid of the CIA," which will actually just shut down criticism that might be constructive.
  17. Anonymous Member

    All you talk about is how to reform the government. But government can not be reformed as you want, for the reasons I've given. Very specific reasons, having to do with incentives, prices, human nature and the like. The fact that you continue to ignore these reasons is no concern of mine.

    wow, just wow.
    TI, post all you want. I will leave this thread to you.
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  18. The Internet Member

    Thanks anti gov guy. To me specific means actual names of people and places, not political philosophy. And saying government is evil shuts down productive conversation. Where you live things must be different.

    It's like I'm trying to work out some football plays and you're saying football sucks. Not actually helpful.
  19. Anonymous Member

    SO Kermit Roosevelt's action in Iran in 1953 aren't specific enough for you?
    He did that in our name, and yet now, 60 years later, the negative repercussions of that incredible stupid, criminal and evil act still affects us to this day.

    IOW, you want me to accept that I must pay for this, and have no say in the action as it is planned, but that I definitely have to pay for and accept the consequences of an act I would never have sanctioned after our best and brightest leaders decide to do it.

    Hmmm....and you say that my ideas will result in a dangerous society even while the group you defend destroys civil rights around the world, bombs innocent peoples, overthrows elected governments and generally acts the bully.

    Go figure.

    YOu give far too much credence to 'good' government, as if people suddenly become moral when they go to work for the government. Public Choice theory shows just where you go wrong in your assumptions.
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  20. Rockyj Member

    Shrinking the PIC might help but it does open this up to some moon bats.
    I believe Obama really is a decent man but he's always been more of a corporate democrat like the Republicans use to be before they went bat shit crazy.
    I believe soon after he took office and was told who really made the decisions and runs the government.
    They are willing to give us bits & pieces to appease us but that will be eventually taken away too.
  21. Anonymous Member

    talk about moonbats
    Obama wants power. Period. This is obvious to all who are not oblivious.
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  22. The Internet Member

    So y'alls actually want to have a conversation where someone says, "Obama is evil." Then someone else says, "the government is evil." And then, "see I told you so the government is always and ever shall be evil"?

    Wait don't answer that, please. Just let's all accept that stuff as proven facts so we can move on, k? Otherwise I will have to an hero out of boredom.
  23. Rockyj Member

  24. Anonymous Member

  25. The Internet Member

    It is hard to talk about the CIA isn't it.

    I'll try to pick out the most useful dox I've found to post here. Got a few other things to do first.
  26. JohnnyRUClear Member

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  27. The Internet Member

    Anti-gov guy, I think by refusing to extend a presumption of good will toward people in our intelligence services, there will be no productive dialogue. The people in those services will get defensive and hunker down and we'll be even more out in the cold than we are now. That's just my opinion. I could be wrong because what do I know. Still, I feel this opinion pretty strongly right now. So I don't want to write off everyone in the CIA/NSA as evil or stupid. To me that is closing the conversation before it even gets a chance to start. I think that will lead to more government secrecy and that idea makes me feel miserable and hopeless.

    I'm nobody special, seriously. I'm just googling up things in between other more enjoyable activities like making YouTubes about fish. You don't have to prove anything to me. Just let me be some retard who refuses to listen or whatever.

    Anyway I read this document the other day and I got a lot from it:

    A Framework for Reform of the
    U.S. Intelligence Community

    by John A. Gentry
    6 June 1995

    Table of Contents

    1. Introduction

    2. National Interests and Intelligence Community Missions

    • Scope of Mission
    • Consumers of Intelligence
    • Time Horizons
    • Performance Criteria
    • Organizational Flexibility
    3. Internal Decay: The Real Reason for Reform

    • Dysfunctional Intelligence Culture
    • CIA's Directorate of Operations
    • CIA's Directorate of Science & Technology
    • CIA's Directorate of Intelligence
    • Magnitude of the Problem
    • Other Agencies' Problems
    • Outside Pressure Essential
    4. Elements of Organizational Reform

    • Strengthen the DCI
    • Collection and Analysis: Complements or Adversaries?
    • Unite NSA and CIA
    • Reform Military Intelligence
    • Revamp the National Intelligence Council
    • Establish Genuine Intellectual Competition
    • State/INR Performs Well
    • Reinvigorate Inspectors General
    • Revamp Security Procedures
    • What Place the Intelligence Budget?
    • Exempt Intelligence From Affirmative Action
    • Improve Congressional Oversight
    • Presidential Leadership Critical
    5. Reform Ideas to Avoid

    • CIA Must Continue to Exist
    • Keep the DO and DI Separate
    • No Military Control of Covert Action
    • No National Imagery Agency
    • No Separate Open-Source Agency
    • No Industrial Espionage
    • Put Ames in Perspective
    • Don't Eliminate CIA's Military Analysis
    • No New Intelligence Paradigm
    6. Conclusions

    • Beware of the "Wise Men"
    • Conduct Real Research
    • A Critical Window of Opportunity
  28. Anonymous Member

    ^ A cool well-reasoned evidence-backed piece of analysis.

    Some quotes that stood out for me:
    It is a good analysis, but I think this quote illustrates the elephant in the room that the report missed:
    Right there, imo, is the single biggest issue in need of resolution. When most foreign policy operations are pursued they are not done so 'to forward US interests', a piece of PR bollocks that many are too eager to swallow. Droning Afghani's indiscriminately cannot possibly be in the interests on the US people, nor could spying on Brazil's oil industry, nor could bullying other countries into adopting super-rigid TRIPS-plus copyright/patent laws, nor could most of the myriad of US military, intelligence or diplomatic operations conducted over the last decade. We know who the beneficiaries of such are, and its isn't the 'American people'.

    It all goes back to the simple quip 'he who pays the piper calls the tune'. Intelligence directors and personnel are practically being rotated with private industry companies (Eg: Clapper, current director of national intelligence, was an executive at Booz). So if the same people running (and benefiting from) private intelligence are also in positions of decision-making with the government then the corrupting result is not just expected but inevitable. The correlation between campaign donations from intelligence contractors and how people voted on the Amash amendment was striking, but again an inevitable result of the influence of money in politics.

    'He who pays the piper calls the tune'. Until money and corporate influence is removed from US policy decision-making, trying to reform anything is like fighting with one hand tied behind your back.

    Some of the more blatant examples of corruption are staggeringly overt. An example is when Brewer, in Arizona, introduced a law that would result in an increased amount of detainees for the very private prisons who donated heavily to her election campaign. Let me try and put this into the proper perspective. If a Chinese official had attempted the same level of brazenness they would have been executed for government corruption.

    'He who pays the piper calls the tune'. That is, imo, the single most pressing political challenge facing the US today. When the FBI, to take yet another example, will begin investigating peaceful protesters at the behest and in collaboration with corporations you know something stinks. Until the money and the corporate influence is taken out of US politics achieving anything will remain an uphill struggle.

    There is a proposed solution though, one that has struck me as being the most likely to succeed of all that I have heard – go through the states to get an amendment passed via an Article V. Convention:
  29. JohnnyRUClear Member

    You want a Con-Con today? Srsly? Wow. Where are the modern "Founding Fathers" who would steer it in the right direction?

    Ultimately, I don't care that much either way, having abandoned hope in any form of state. However, it surprises me to hear that come from you after most of your message showed so much wisdom. The only other spot I would criticize is this:

    "Until the money and the corporate influence is taken out of US politics achieving anything will remain an uphill struggle."

    Ophelia, bro, but that can't happen. The state is a power monopoly, and money is power. You're trying to take the stink out of poop.
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  30. Anonymous Member

    Every US generation has passed an amendment. This is the one for the current generation to aim for.
  31. The Internet Member

    You make a good point about the role of big doners in politics. We probably need to do something about that while we try to figure out what's going on in our intelligence services and how those services can become more useful to us.

    I will later try to pull out the parts of that CIA reform document that I found most interesting. Then, some more good stuff I found on the webs.
  32. Anonymous Member

    That's what caught my eye.
    All that is textbook Public Choice theory.
    Just saying.
  33. JohnnyRUClear Member

    Sacred rabbits? I don't even
  34. Anonymous Member

    think he means scared, yes?
    But considering it's the NSA, maybe they stare at goats and have temples to the Sacred Rabbit.
    But nah, that'd be like some guy selling a religion based on alien power struggles...
  35. demarquis Member

    The Internet, I think one problem is that you are asking a very general question. "How do we 'fix' the CIA/NSA necessarily invites very broad responses which will reflect the prejudices of the person responding. I think if you asked raised more specific issues you might get more useful answers. For example, I would personally focus on domestic surveillance. One of the reasons that the preponderance of surveillance being conducted has shifted from the Justice Dept. to the intelligence community, IMHO, is because the NSA isnt held to the same legal requirements as the FBI, etc. There's an area in which a relatively straightforward set of policy changes (repeal the PATRIOT act, etc.) might deliver some useful improvements.
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  36. Anonymous Member

    Why people think the elected president is responsible for every US policy and new laws? Goldman sec runs the global economy, the military and intelligence community runs the country, Monsanto and big farma run FDA, arm dealers and oil companies run foreign policies. If you fight everybody you could end up assassinated, not even knowing which camp did it. It happened. If you focus and make deals you could get something done to your ideology - such as obama care. So you have something to be remembered for.

    It's not conspiracy theory. It's just natural. If you hit my baby, bama care, too much, I'll hit you back, sue the bank's ass. Just a year or so ago they are saying if you behave well, I'll delay prosecution or let you off easy. Do you think if the president wants to "nationalize" NSA, Dian Fienstein and Boost Allen will let him? Closing Gismo does not have great significant one way or the other. So one will do the least resistance path, annoying the least people.
  37. JohnnyRUClear Member

    We need a protest against nationalizing the NSA. Somebody get on that.
  38. laughingsock Member

  39. Anonymous Member

    If you did not know, a large part of NSA is being "privatized" leading to the extensive use of contractors and paying huge sums to the private sector. The govt guy responsible for that went on to run one of the big companies. The public part of the NSA is negligible by expenditure.
  40. The Internet Member

    Yeah this mania for privatizing everything is bad. It's like giving Scientology front groups for their front groups. It's only going to make it much harder for citizens like us to figure out what is going on. Then when we find the bad people, their company will go bankrupt while they retire to some nice warm island.

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