Review: Strategic Intelligence [Five Volumes] (Intelligence and the Quest for Security) (v. 1-5)

5 Star, Intelligence (Government/Secret), Strategy

Strategic IntelligenceBeyond Five Stars for Content, Zero for Unjustified Pricing,

March 28, 2007

Loch K. Johnson

I am the author of the chapter in volume 2, “Open Source Intelligence,” which is freely available as a pdf at OSS.Net forward slash OSINT-S.

Neither Dr. Johnson, the editor and the deal of the intelligence scholar-practioners, nor any of the other authors, ever suspected that the publishers would dishonor our work, virtually for free (we each received $300 and a set of the books).

As a professional, I can certify that this set is spectacularly valuable. It is the best of the best at a time when the USA is wasting $60 billion dollars a year on secret sources and methods that yield only 4% of any policy-makers “relevant” decision-support.

As a publisher, I can start with certainty that it cost the publisher roughly a penny a page to print this book. This set of five books should under no circumstances cost more than $250.

Amazon holds the key, but Jeff Bezos has blown me off. Despite the fact that 300 of his people were inspired by my lecture on Amazon as the World Brain, he is choosing to ignore the desperate need of libraries, scholars, and practioners everywhere for a new form of micro-cash for micro-text digital exchange.

I personally believe that micro-text, like DVDs did for the movie industry, with double the gross revenue of the publishing industry without increasing the cost. What we need is for all the libraries to get together and go on strike–no purchases of a single book–until the publishing industry demands that Amazon host a summit, where I would be glad to lay out the plan personally. If you visit The Transitioner's GLobal Challenges page, you can access by briefings and videos speaking to Amazon, to Hackers, and to Bloggers (Gnomedex).

The publishing industry is about to get eaten by Google, at the same time that Google is demanding ownership of anything it digitizes. Wrong answer. Kudos to the Boston libraries for throwing Google out of town. Amazon and micro-cash are the answer, as well as an increase in publishing efficiency and a clear open statement of actual costs of production.

This five book series represents the very best of the industry (valuable content) and also the very worst (seriously unethical pricing).

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