The perfect storm is brewing.
The former mayor of Salt Lake City is suing former President George W. Bush, former Vice President Dick Cheney and the National Security Agency for spying on the city during the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.
Phi Beta Iota: The comments include two worthy of note. The first anticipates the assassination of Rocky Anderson. While unlikely in our view, the mere fact that a citizen would assume this is a sad commentary on where we are in our loss of confidence as a Republic. The second asks why, if NSA can monitor everything, it has not been able to stop drug trafficking (to which we would add trafficking in women and children). We find the second observation the more significant. As William Binney of NSA has pointed out, the purpose of the US secret intelligence community is to keep the problems alive so the money keeps moving. Three revolutions are pending in US intelligence and counterintelligence:
01 A Political Revolution. In this revolution, our citizenry re-engages with the political process and elects an Independent ticket in 2016 while demanding electoral reform and an end to the two-party tyranny so aptly described by Matt Taibbi in Griftopia. An honest political class will demand ethical evidence-based decision-support against all threats and across all policy domains.
02 A Technical Revolution. In this revolution, the wasteful, fragmented approach to secret information technology will be dumped in favor of a cloud-based approach (Oracle, not Amazon) that enables every cop on the beat to both enter data useful to the FBI in doing pattern analysis and intelligence-led counterintelligence, and every decision-maker at every level (including the cop on the beat) to receive decision-support. This will be an open source everything engineering revolution with better open source security than the IC (or OPM) have today. This revolution will include the rapid creation of the eighteen-functions needed to enable all-source data ingestion, desktop, distributed unit, and back office pattern analysis, and compelling visualization in time and space. The legacy data is not worth saving or migrating — we need a clean-sheet fresh start that embraces all of the data from across all eight information tribes (academic, civil society, commerce, government, law enforcement, media, military, and non-government/non-profit). Implemented with open source technologies and the blockchain enabling distributed everything, this revolution will make possible the discovery, discrimination, distillation and delivery of true cost economic information to all citizens all the time — armed with such knowledge, they will have the power to make collective decisions in the public interest.
UN Paper: Beyond Data Monitoring – Achieving the Sustainability Development Goals Through Intelligence (Decision-Support) Integrating Holistic Analytics, True Cost Economics, and Open Source Everything
03 An Analytic Revolution. The US Government does not “do” intelligence analysis. It goes through the motions. It lacks strategic analytic models, effective requirements definition and collection management, access to open sources and local sources in near-real-time, and most dauntingly, a sufficiency of qualified analysts properly trained and consistently heard. Analysts needs better training, betters sources and methods, and better managers who know how to demand, guide, and exploit analysis at four levels (strategic, political/policy, acquisition, and operational/tactical). This means among other things that it is not enough to train the analysts, we need to train the managers as well — a series of practical exercises guiding managers and analysts together toward defining what managers need to know, and then guiding analysts in demonstrating how they can expeditiously guide collection, process, analyze, and deliver, would be most interesting.
A perfect storm is brewing, this is a good thing. The USA may finally be ready to become a 21st Century “Smart Nation.”