Monday, November 25, 2013

Orwell has nothing on the NSA consultants writing white papers

Over at my fav online magazine comes revelations of wide-spread "corporate speak" used to pepper NSA documents. The insidious nature of obfuscation and deliberately vague word-smithing helps lend credence to the agency's desire for ubiquitous/universal surveillance.

Here are some excellent examples from the leaked document:

“We must proactively position ourselves to dominate that environment”
“Fully leverage internal and external partnerships to collaboratively discover targets”
“a collaborative information space that mirrors how people interact in the information age”
“Drive an agile technology base mapped to the cognitive processes”
“Integrate the SIGINT system into a national network of sensors which interactively sense, respond, and alert one another at machine speed”
“Collectively foster an environment that encourages and rewards diversity, empowerment, innovation, risk-taking and agility” [Which reminds Vulture South, the Human Resources sector seems to have contributed to the infiltration task-force]
“Enable better, more efficient management of the mission and business by establishing new, modifying current, and eliminating inefficient, business processes; by strengthening customer relationships; and by building necessary internal and external partnerships.”
“Align and standardize administrative business processes”
“Champion the development of a unified NSA/CSS U.S. customer engagement strategy”
“Counterpoint the surrealism of the underlying metaphor*”

This kind of language deliberately disguises, distorts, or reverses the meaning of words -- euphemisms primarily meant to make the truth sound more reasonable. This intentional ambiguity in language or actual inversions of meaning disguises the nature of the true message.

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