Saturday, April 02, 2005

David Brooks on Intelligence Failures

The NYT's David Brooks with The Art of Intelligence: "the presidential panel on intelligence pointed to the same failings found by other reports. It said intelligence analysts 'displayed a lack of imagination.'"

"...the problem is not bureaucratic. It's epistemological. Individuals are good at using intuition and imagination to understand other humans."

"...When you try to analyze human affairs using a process that is systematic, codified and bureaucratic, as the C.I.A. does, you anesthetize all of these tools. You don't produce reason - you produce what Irving Kristol called the elephantiasis of reason."

Brooks concludes: "I'll believe it's been reformed when there's a big sign in front of C.I.A. headquarters that reads: Individuals think better than groups."

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