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It’s snowing metaphoric chyrons 8

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

[ by Charles Cameron — auditioning, pledging, pitching, animated by animus, focusing fire, kicking, lashing, assault, shocked, strike, slammer ]]
.

Headers:

First, some ouroboroi (serpents that bite their own tails):

This strikes me as a negative ouroboros

— the point here is that the serpent snaps at its tail and misses:

Next, a fairly plausible ourob — the newspaper is reporting on a suit against itself. There’s a frame-switch here, between headline and paper, which is why I call it “plausible”:

And this one — can we call it an ourob? Trunp, after all, is part of reality, so in this case it’s a part raging at its own whole:

If, as I keepm arguing, ouroboroi are often markers of significant content — not always, but opften enough — it’s worth testing the boundaries of what constitutes an ourob. And simply getting practice= in identifying them.

What do you think?

**

Quotes:

Writing in Inside the London tech scene’s frantic plan to stop Brexit of tech folk in Britain,

these people eventually congealed into an unofficial pro-Remain guerrilla operation, determined to use their skills to make the Brexit train stall before it goes flying over the white cliffs of Dover.

the group’s “numer” or leading light is quoted as saying:

MTP: Bernie Sanders is flexing his fundraising muscles ..
m39 one-to-one ..

Ari Melber 2/20/2019: We love to speculate about this [timing of Mueller release ] because it’s uniquely high drama ..

Hardball: Bernie Sanders comes fast out of the gate with his fundraising
It’s kicking it into Dan Coats’ court ..
We don’t know whether Joe Biden or Beto O’Rourke who are auditioning for the role of Hamlet, when they’re finally going to decide what to do ..
There’s so many wild cards out there on the Democratic side, and to some extent on the Trump side of the equation ..

All In, Chris Hayes:
CH to McCabe: What do you say to the basic idea that there’s these people inside the FBI, you among them, who just don’t like the guy [DJT], didn’t like the guy from the jump. and were animated by animus essentially in the actions you took ..
Enemy of the people .. these very loaded terms ..
The President calling you out, Fox News focusing its fire on you ..
Dan Coats is the latest one to be sort of in the cross hairs with this President ..
We still don’t know about Wikileaks ..
Clint Watts: The belief has always been that should Wikileaks ever go down, that day or the next day there would be an unbelievable release of material. It’s always been thought that they’re on an information timebomb ..

Morning Joe 2/21/2019 We should be shocked that we’re not more shocked ..

**

Chyrons

  • CNN Situation Room 5pm m59 2/20/2019 chyroon NATO
  • MTP chyron NYT Enemy of the People
  • And a George Mason ouroboros:

    We weren’t always so ready to label far-right extremists domestic terrorists, but now it’s happening ..

    **

    Okay, Ari Melber and the Roger Stone trial:

    Roger Stone’s very well known effort to turn serious proceedings into a baroque theater of the absurd .. **

    — both kicking myself and pledging “epic fight” — twofer!

    Ari: Quite a performance. This is the reality part. Stone was doing the reality show part. We’re in the reality part today ..

    Nick Ackerman: In a way, this is like baseball: the third strike and he’s off to the slammer ..

    Rogow (defense): It’s indefensible ..

    NA: If she’s put into place at the time a full gaga order, he would have gone directly to jail, do not stop Go, do not collect $200 ..

    AM: This is his last, last strike as she puts it ..

    **

    And that’s my last stroke for the day.

    It’s snowing metaphoric chyrons, ignore unless interested 7

    Wednesday, February 20th, 2019

    [ by Charles Cameron — chyrons, yes — but also a mini-essay on what happens when loose fingertips sink ops — and including a multi-math game physicists play ]
    .

    IMO, defang is a great word — so I was delighted to hear the phrase, Mr. Trump’s attempts to defang the investigations

    Let’s get to work, there’s lots to cover:

    **

    Chyrons:

    We’ve had bombshells before — meet new bombshells.

    A regular fight metaphor:

    An extraordinary one – jumping on a grenade!

    And this one’s good, from the Georgia voter suppression story:

    Running? D’oh, must be a sports metaphor:

    and two from the 11th hour with Bryan Williams:

    sustained and secretive assault is quite fine!

    **

    Words heard:

    The Secretary of State in Georgia not only administered the election, he falsely accused the Democratic party of hacking to cover up his incompetence the weekend before the election, and he systematically harmed voters over a decade — he was not only the contestant, he was the score-keeper the referee. And there is no equitable system that allows that to be so. It’s not fair.

    Rachel Maddow on Manafort, 2/19/2019:

    And that fairly dire circumstance, the fact that sixty-nine and a half year old Paul Manafort is now looking down the twin barrels of a sentence from this Federal judge in Virginia and then another sentence from this Federal judge in DC, at’s, honestly is a crisis of his own making ..

    And this — Neal Katyal called Trump Grandmaster Pinocchio. Now that’s certainly a Disney reference, but is it also a ref to hip hop — Grandmaster Flash — or chess — Kasparov?

    **

    Headers:

    Catfishing was a new one on me, but certainly striking! Apparently it goes with sextortion:

    Members of the military happen to be particularly high-profile targets for scams like catfishing and sextortion. Recently, a group of inmates in South Carolina were busted for allegedly blackmailing 442 service members using fake personas on online dating services. Not only can these tactics hit service members’ wallets, they may also represent a security risk if the victims have access to sensitive information.

    Okay, it has natsec implications, and is clearly a word I need to learn.

    The catfishing, here, was by a NATO research org, red teaming to see what NATO soldiers, with a little prompting, might reveal on social media:

    The phony Facebook pages looked just like the real thing. They were designed to mimic pages that service members use to connect. One appeared to be geared toward a large-scale, military exercise in Europe and was populated by a handful of accounts that appeared to be real service members.

    In reality, both the pages and the accounts were created and operated by researchers at NATO’s Strategic Communications Center of Excellence, a research group that’s affiliated with NATO. They were acting as a “red team” on behalf of the military to test just how much they could influence soldiers’ real-world actions through social media manipulation.

    The results indicated that soldiers did indeed tend to leak information that “bad actors” might appreciate and use against them, or against NATO forces more generally:

    By the end of the exercise, the researchers identified 150 soldiers, found the locations of several battalions, tracked troop movements, and compelled service members to engage in “undesirable behavior,” including leaving their positions against orders.

    And guess what? The Russians are aware of the same possibility, and have banned the use of smartphones and similar devices by their troops as a consequence:

    That combo of articles comes to us via Michael Robinson, to whom I must once again offer my grateful thanks.

    And one thing more: the NATO group issued a report, and its title intrigued me:

    Cognitive security was another term that’s new to me — IBM / Watson defines it thus:

    Cognitive security combines the strengths of artificial intelligence and human intelligence. Cognitive AI learns with each interaction to proactively detect and analyze threats, providing actionable insights to security analysts for making informed decisions – with speed and accuracy.

    That’s as much a sales pitch as a definition, but still gives us a sense of where these terms are trending.. and there’s reading to be done:

  • Wired, NATO Group Catfished Soldiers to Prove a Point About Privacy
  • Guardian, Russia moves to mask its soldiers’ digital trail with smartphone ban
  • NATO Stratcom, Responding to Cognitive Security Challenges
  • IBM, Artificial intelligence for a smarter kind of cybersecurity
  • That’s our mini-essay for the day, and maybe the week!

    **

    Now think on this:

    **

    Game on!

    Let’s end today’s snow-sweep with a game metaphor applied to physics, or maybe I should say the philosophy and practice of physics: it’s a game in which the rules — in this case, mathematical languages — change from move to move — from Natalie Wolchover‘s A Different Kind of Theory of Everything:

    It happens again and again that, when there are many possible descriptions of a physical situation—all making equivalent predictions, yet all wildly different in premise—one will turn out to be preferable, because it extends to an underlying reality, seeming to account for more of the universe at once. And yet this new description might, in turn, have multiple formulations—and one of those alternatives may apply even more broadly. It’s as though physicists are playing a modified telephone game in which, with each whisper, the message is translated into a different language. The languages describe different scales or domains of the same reality but aren’t always related etymologically. In this modified game, the objective isn’t—or isn’t only—to seek a bedrock equation governing reality’s smallest bits. The existence of this branching, interconnected web of mathematical languages, each with its own associated picture of the world, is what needs to be understood.

    That’s it!

    HipBone implications of the second shoe dropping for intel analysis

    Sunday, August 6th, 2017

    [ by Charles Cameron — also, the role of the True Name in intel analysis & Ursula Le Guin’s Earthsea ]
    .

    You may know that I value the documentary film Manhunt for its lucid presentation of the process by which the finest intelligence analysts “leap” to their quarry — in which Cindy Storer notes, “not the analysts doing it, but other people who didn’t have that talent referred to it as magic”.

    In my post The process of associative memory I decribe this process, which I consider the root process of true creativity:

    There’s the present moment .. And there’s the memory it elicits.

    Compare Michael Hayden in Manhunt, at 1.19.18:

    The way it works is, information come in, you catalog it, your organize it – that little nugget there could sit fallow on your shelves for four or five years until something else comes in that’s suddenly very illuminating about something that you may have had for a very long period of time. That actually happened in the work we did to hunt for Osama bin Laden by trying to track his courier.

    By way of confirmation, here is Robert Frost:

    The artist must value himself as he snatches a thing from some previous order in time and space into a new order with not so much as a ligature clinging to it of the old place where it was organic.

    And here’s Jeff Jones on piecing together puzzles —

    Some pieces produce remarkable epiphanies. You grab the next piece, which appears to be just some chunk of grass – obviously no big deal. But wait … you discover this innocuous piece connects the windmill scene to the alligator scene! This innocent little new piece turned out to be the glue.

    **

    My point here is that the board in my “game” of DoubleQuotes provides a matrix for eliciting and annotating such leaps between fact and memory — that’s its purpose, and that’s why I believe the practice and “playing” of DoubleQuotes is, in itself, an ideal training for the analytic mind in that otherwise elusive aptitude which Ms Storer says seenms like magic to those who do not possess it..

    I believe my DoubleQuotes would be an invaluable tool for analysts in training.

    **

    Note, however, that Jose Rodriguez, speaking immediately after Michael Hayden at 1.19.55, adds a reference to the “True Name” — accompanying screencaps included — something to which as a theologian I am naturally drawn:

    It took years for the agency to recruit the human source that eventually gave us the true name. That’s why we were in the business the of condensing human intelligence because, in many cases, all these fancy gadgets and everything else won’t give you the information that you really need. A true name.

    And we finally got his true name, which is whatever it is. Whatever. Arabic name, you know. But the true name – we were able to find out a lot about him. From then on, you know, the agency was able to do what it does so well. Track the guy and find him.

    That too elicits memories, though in this case providing cultural context rather than actionable intelligence. It’s interesting to compare Rodriguez’ quote with the passages in which Ursula Le Guin describes the nature of magic in her book, Wizard of Earthsea:

    He who would be Seamaster must know the true name of every drop of water in the sea.

    and:

    He saw that in this dusty and fathomless matter of learning the true name of every place, thing, and being, the power he wanted lay like a jewel at the bottom of a dry well. For magic consists in this, the true naming of a thing.

    **

    See also:

  • Gaming the Connections: from Sherlock H to Nada B
  • Jeff Jonas, Nada Bakos, Cindy Storer and Puzzles
  • FWIW, there’s an appendix on the central spiritual significance of remembrance of the True Name in Judaism (HaShem), Christianity (Jesus Prayer), Islam (dhikr), Hinduism (nama-rupa), Buddhism (nembutsu) etc at the back of Frithjof Schuon‘s little book, The Transcendent Unity of Religions.

    On which frankly mystical note, here’s a third para from Le Guin to carry you towards Lao Tzu‘s observation that “The name that can be named is not the eternal Name” —

    It is no secret. All power is one in source and end, I think. Years and distances, stars and candles, water and wind and wizardry, the craft in a man’s hand and the wisdom in a tree’s root: they all arise together. My name, and yours, and the true name of the sun, or a spring of water, or an unborn child, all are syllables of the great word that is very slowly spoken by the shining of the stars. There is no other power. No other name.

    Clapper somewhat upends Trump from Down Under

    Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

    [ by Charles Cameron — this will surely encourage Comey to be forthcoming on Thursday ]
    .

    From Clapper‘s stunning speech at the Australian National Press Club:

    Comaring Watergate with the current crisis:

    I lived through Watergate. I was on active duty then in Air Force, I was a young officer. It was a scary time. It was against the backdrop of the post Vietnam trauma as well which seemed, at least in my memory, amplified as a backdrop, amplified the crisis in our system with Watergate. I have to say, though, I think you compare the two that Watergate pales really in my view compared to what we’re confronting now.

    Sources of concern:

    I am very concerned about the assault on our institutions coming from both an external source — read Russia — and an internal source, the President himself.

    Paranoia and the dossier:

    Clapper said he sensed “extreme paranoia” in Trump during his interactions with the new president, and lamented Trump’s stance toward the U.S. intelligence community in particular.

    *

    “Then President-elect Trump disparaged the intelligence community’s high-confidence assessment of the magnitude and diversity of this Russian interference that I just described by characterising us as Nazis,” he said.

    “This was prompted, I found, I realised later, by his and his team’s extreme paranoia about and resentment of any doubt cast on the legitimacy of his election which, of course, our assessment did.”

    *

    Clapper claimed that when he called Trump to talk about intelligence, the president asked him to disavow the controversial intelligence dossier that claimed Russia had compromising material on Trump.

    “I tried, naively as it turned out, to appeal to his higher instincts by pointing out that the US intelligence community that he was about to inherit is a national treasure in our country and that the people in it were committed to supporting him and making him successful. Ever-transactional, he simply asked me to publicly refute the infamous dossier which I couldn’t and wouldn’t do,” Clapper said.

    Clapper said he sensed “extreme paranoia” in Trump during his interactions with the new president, and lamented Trump’s stance toward the U.S. intelligence community in particular. Clapper claimed that when he called Trump to talk about intelligence, the president asked him to disavow the controversial intelligence dossier that claimed Russia had compromising material on Trump.

    “His subsequent actions, sharing sensitive intelligence with the Russians and compromising its source, reflect either ignorance or disrespect and either is very problematic.”

    Firing Comey:

    “Certainly the whole episode with the firing of Jim Comey, a distinguished public servant, apart from the egregious inexcusable manner in which it was conducted, reflect complete disregard for the independence and autonomy of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, our premiere law enforcement organisation.”

    Trustworthy in the Administration:

    He observed there were people in the administration who could be trusted – nominating Jim Mattis, the defence secretary, John Kelly, the homeland security chief, and HR McMaster, the national security adviser. “They have understanding and respect for our institutions,” he said.

    Smoking gun:

    “Is there a smoking gun with all the smoke? I don’t know the answer to that. I think it’s vital, though, we find that out.

    Upcoming Comey testimony:

    Mr Clapper pointed to the possibility of further damaging revelations when James Comey, the former FBI director sacked by Mr Trump, gives evidence on allegations of Russian interference in US politics before a congressional hearing Thursday, Washington time.

    “I think it will be very significant to see both what he says and what he is asked about and doesn’t respond to,” said Mr Clapper.**

    **

    My sources and more:

    It is to be regretted that neither a complete video nor a complete transcript of this major speech is readily available as yet, except perhaps in Australia. I have made this compilation as well as I coud, working from some of the following sources:

  • The Australian, Trump administration ‘pales’ compared to Watergate
  • Sydney Morning Herald, US-Australia bond transcends transitory occupant of White House
  • Huffington Post, Oz, Former U.S. Intelligence Chief Just Unleashed On Donald Trump
  • News.com.au, Former US intelligence chief ranks watergate less of a scandal
  • Guardian, James Clapper says Watergate ‘pales’ in comparison with Trump Russia scandal
  • ABC, Oz, Donald Trump’s alleged Russia links will dwarf Watergate scandal
  • Quick notes on intelligent intelligence, 2

    Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

    [ by Charles Cameron — on a quote from my fellow whacky Brit, Geoffrey Pyke ]
    .

    the-ingenious-mr-pyke-cover-smaller

    Whacky? From a short description of the man by his biographer, Henry Hemming:

    Geoffrey Pyke, an inventor, war reporter, escaped prisoner, campaigner, father, educator–and all-around misunderstood genius. In his day, he was described as one of the world’s great minds, to rank alongside Einstein, yet he remains virtually unknown today. Pyke was an unlikely hero of both world wars and, among many other things, is seen today as the father of the U.S. Special Forces. He changed the landscape of British pre-school education, earned a fortune on the stock market, wrote a bestseller and in 1942 convinced Winston Churchill to build an aircraft carrier out of reinforced ice. He escaped from a German WWI prison camp, devised an ingenious plan to help the Republicans in the Spanish Civil War, and launched a private attempt to avert the outbreak of the Second World War by sending into Nazi Germany a group of pollsters disguised as golfers.

    Whacky!

    And for good measure, here’s Jami Miscik on oddballs:

    To truly nurture creativity, you have to cherish your contrarians and give them opportunities to run free. Leaders in the analytic community must avoid trying to make everyone meet a preconceived notion of the intelligence community’s equivalent of the “man in the gray flannel suit.”

    and Reuel Marc Gerecht:

    And the service can ill-afford to lose creative personnel with a high tolerance for risk.

    It’s a sad fact that the folks who are in government, especially in the “elite” services of the CIA and the State Department, aren’t what they used to be. They are, to be blunt, less interesting. There are vastly fewer “characters” -— the unconventional, often infuriating, types who give institutions color and competence.

    **

    Okay, here’s Geoffrey Pyke in his own capital letters:

    EVERYTHING IS IRRELEVANT TILL CORRELATED WITH SOMETHING ELSE

    And why does that interest me?

    Well first, today it corroborates my comment just now on David Barno and Nora Bensahel and the importance of their suggestion that “The Army should also reinstate the requirement for every career officer to develop skills in two specialties.”

    And then second, because I have been saying for a while that:

    Two is the first number

    and quoting along the way Aristotle, Jung, and the tenth-century Rasa’il Ikhwan al-Safa’..

    **

    For these reasons, and with a hat-tip to Bryan Alexander, I cherish the contrarian intelligence of Mr Pyke.


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