Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has decried the revelation of the intelligence-gathering programs as reckless and said it has done “huge, grave damage.” In recent days, he took the rare step of declassifying some details about them to respond to media reports about counterterrorism techniques employed by the government.Why damage? Sane people have known about this for a long time. Most importantly, our supposed "enemies" have known about it as well. Why the fuck do you suppose Sheikh Osama used all sorts of cutouts and personal messengers to insulate his communications from the Web? He understood the system. If you focus on the phrase supposed "enemies", the answer becomes clear. Clapper obviously doesn't care that al-Qaeda already knows everything about his system. He DOES care that the American people are learning something about his system. This tells you who NSA's real enemies are. And that's no surprise either.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.