On August 4th 2011, D.J. Pangburn‘s An Open Letter to Defcon Hackers: Don’t Sell Out to the NSA turned up. Later that day, Bill Brenner wrote Hackers selling out by working for NSA? I’m not convinced. Here’s what John Young thinks of Brenner’s piece (cited from e-mail w/permission):
Completely idiotic article, quite deceptive. It omits the lifetime
secrecy agreements required for NSA employees and that any
whistleblowers are prosecuted if they reveal anything really
secret. There are hundreds of court cases showing what NSA
does to anyone who tries to leave or tells what goes on inside
One does not leave NSA as if the military, one does not leave
without agreeing to never tell what goes on inside. That is a
solemn contract agreed to before entry and an even more
serious sterilization undergone if one insists on resigning.
Severe criminal penalities are described in great detail and
you sign that you understand them without reservation.
And you are forever watched to assure you don't do what
the silly author says you can do to bring about change. He is
a lying son of a bitch, either through unwitting ignorance or
through witting deliberate misrepresentation.
These conditions apply to all secrecy organizations. The
periodic disclosures by ex-members are not to be believed,
they make the not terribly revealing disclosures as a
continuing part of their job through whistleblowing, novels,
movies, confessions, and the like.
You cannot escape, this is what was taught in the ancient
days of one-way-in, no-way-out secret societies and remains
true today. Recruiters are devious as they must be or nobody
would join the secretkeepers if they knew the truth of what was
in store for them to give up control of their lives and minds
forever, and remain compelled to lie, lie and lie some more,
and, to be sure, recruit noobs by writing noobish nonsense.
Now, how is one to decide where to draw the line between realistic concern and paranoia?