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This page contains all of the posts and discussion on MemeStreams referencing the following web page: The Liberator - Mike Wertheimer. You can find discussions on MemeStreams as you surf the web, even if you aren't a MemeStreams member, using the Threads Bookmarklet. The Liberator - Mike Wertheimer
by Rattle at 12:30 pm EDT, Sep 24, 2007

This article is about the guy behind Intellipedia and A-Space.

Mike Wertheimer may be the most dangerous man in U.S. intelligence. You would probably never guess it, judging from his lengthy and opaque title -- assistant deputy director of national intelligence for analytic transformation and technology. A perfect testament to the well-worn bureaucratic tradition of offering little insight by tossing around a lot of words.

Sharing and secrecy are opposing forces. So this is Wertheimer's task: Transform the massive intelligence bureaucracy into a collaborative network, in which loose lips are, in a way, encouraged; introduce technologies that many seasoned analysts neither understand nor trust; and build a cadre of young, ambitious rookies, who just can't believe they're not allowed to check their personal e-mail at work, into the future of the business.

The opposition is fierce. When The New York Times wrote about A-Space recently, analysts commented about the piece, and about Wertheimer, on a private intelligence community blog. Some recorded their dramatic dissent. "I guarantee," one intelligence employee wrote, "Mike Wertheimer will cause people to get killed over this."

"I am threatening the status quo," Wertheimer says. "And that's a hard pill to swallow for anybody."

The Liberator, by Shane Harris | National Journal
by noteworthy at 12:14 am EDT, Sep 26, 2007

Shane Harris offers a profile of Mike Wertheimer, the idea rat behind A-Space, the "MySpace for spies."

"This has got to be about ideas. We have to sell people on the ideas."

Sixty percent of US intelligence analysts have five years of experience or less on the job. In the larger intelligence community of about 100,000 employees, which includes clandestine operatives and support staff, those young workers are about 40 percent of the rolls.

By and large, these newer members of the community are optimistic and, like Wertheimer, believe that the intelligence community is dangerously broken.

"I am threatening the status quo," Wertheimer says. "And that's a hard pill to swallow for anybody."

Wertheimer says that a colleague once told him, "You will have succeeded when you become really hard to manage."

Wertheimer compared the government's attempts at collaboration to the Borg ... who "assimilate" whole societies by stripping people of individual character traits ...

Wertheimer says that the intelligence agencies could be compared to the record companies.

Lowenthal told him, "I think, unfortunately, a lot of this is pandering to a bunch of commissions that have no understanding of what we do for a living, or the nature of our work, and to a workforce. And I don't think that's a sufficient ground for a transformation. And so I'm left here wondering, what's the end state? For what reason?"

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