Wicked Game Update: Spying for Profit Edition

I have updated Chapter 3 of Wicked Game to include some evidence of the kind of thing I have long suspected that NSA and CIA–or individuals within said agencies–were up to where I was concerned from 1991 until 2010:

Foreign Policy, “Why Was the NSA Chief Playing the Market?: Newly released documents show the NSA chief was investing his money in commodities so obscure that most financial pros stay away,” Shane Harris, 22 October 2014:

foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/10/22/keith_
alexander_stock_trades_potash_aluminum_russia_
china
.

Note that the People’s Bank of China was one of the many tenants in the building. In fact, after the cloak-and-dagger nonsense began, my coworker and I were ordered there, rush job, to visit the office and were very quickly ushered out by the people within. I additionally note that this was just after the time that several Fortune 500 companies were hacked. We were told that these hacks originated in China. I no longer believe that because I’ve got an idea just how much we are lied to and on what topics since. Rather, I think this was a false-flag event designed to drum up more business for the Deep State and serve to further undermine the 4th and indirectly 1st amendments in order to be able to steal without any opposition.

At any rate, Alexander wasn’t the only one engaged in spying-for-profit {allegedly and} apparently. There’s been a resignation as well, though there is denial that it was due to standing on both sides of the revolving door at once:

Firstlook/The Intercept, “All the NSA Will Say About Its Alarmingly Entrepreneurial Top Spy Is That She’s Resigning,” Murtaza Hussain, 24 October 2014:

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/10/24/nsa-official-implicated-potential-conflicts-interest-resigns/

BuzzFeed, “Exclusive: Key NSA Official Has Another Business At Her Home,” Aram Roston, 16 October 2014:

buzzfeed.com/aramroston/second-business-at-home-of-nsa-official

This, too, is exactly what has been suggested by lots of people including myself, though I was hardly the first on that.

Problematic right now is that there is a group of former military people attempting to claim that this all began with Alexander, that it is unprecedented in NSA history, etc., etc. My only reply is: prove it.

First, they have no way of knowing that. They rely on RUMINT, that is what their buddies still on the inside are saying.

Second, we found out about Alexander’s trading because of the FOIA work of Jason Leopold and the investigative journalism of Shane Harris. This was not a voluntary admission or an accident that this came out at all.

Third, it is likely that it hasn’t been quite this obvious. One can imagine spooks in the nineties and aughties using fake accounts, etc. via their training and keeping the profits from the stuff I mention in Wicked Game in foreign accounts or squirreled away some place clever.

The odd thing is, though, these complaints by these former insiders are not that far from those with whom they regularly argue. They tend to blame Snowden for anything they can, and yet he has–at least indirectly–brought more attention to this problem than pretty much anyone since the WaPo Top Secret America exposé in 2010. Though that failed to include the problems found by my acquaintance Mark, formerly of NSA contractor Technodyne, it did show that a very large portion of that $1T annually spent on homeland security is going to the private sector.

Who then lines the pockets of politicians…

Who then sit back and let them do whatever they want…

The cycle continues.

What some may be missing is the “It Won’t Hurt If I’m the Only One Doing It” principle. There has pretty much always been corruption in society, right? It has always cost the tax payers a bit to deal with, but is part of doing business. We even discount it as being a big deal and just sit back and hope as many as can be get caught.

But what happens when this happens on a large scale? Number one, the system becomes bent towards protecting the criminal practices. This in turn means that other, some critical, needs go unmet. This also ruins the economy, at least for those not fortunate enough to be able to trade on all this cloak-and-dagger gold-digging.

In short, I am saying that it is–I am convinced of it–going to seal our doom. It is unsustainable. Something is eventually going to give and when it does it is likely to be several somethings with mega-hurricane size and strength repercussions.

This is to underline my final point.

If I had not had my life ruined, been harassed, tortured, had my head messed with until I was bleeding out my ears, would I have cared that Keith Alexander may have used his position to profit personally off of intelligence obtained through national security efforts? Probably a little, but not much. I would view ebola, “lone wolf terror,” the Republicans, whatever, as a bigger threat and largely ignore it. I wouldn’t see the damage to national security that such practices are doing. I wouldn’t grep that it is going to lead to some very, very bad situations for a lot of people. It’s not one person, it’s many, interfering with the so-called free market via surreptitious means.

Further, I wouldn’t have any idea what it was like to be on the wrong end of “American exceptionalism” where a monstrous, un-American, illegal covert system is concerned. While this portion of my story may sound like an unfortunate segment of the the Twilight Zone movie, I can tell you that it is very, very upsetting and if you had been through it you would understand completely why people lose the ability to cope, to think that there is something better around the bend. You would understand why they pick up a gun or blow something up.

And then you’d have to wonder if that were a natural occurrence. I know it at least doesn’t have to be.

***

And another plug for the excellent thought-experiment scifi novel Echopraxia while I’m writing. A quote from p. 292:

echo

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