Monday, March 13, 2006

Our Stunningly Competent Government At Work

Have you ever watched one of those TV shows like Alias or The Unit, about America's irreproachable secret agents and the machinations of keeping an identity clandestine despite the information harvesters of the modern world, and wondered how true to life that is, with the disguises and the forged papers and Rachel Nichols' stupid, stupid fake British accent? The Chicago Tribune did, and it turns out that the actual CIA might take a lesson from our Hollywood spies keeping their fictional covert identities secret from America's fictional enemies. The Tribune did some kind of Google search for "undercover CIA agents" and got found the names of more than 2,600 CIA operatives, in addition to their addresses and satellite photos of their homes.

So when I try Googling myself, hoping for a little free publicity, and get eighteen million results for imitation Jay Harrises, I'm a little tempted to look one of these spooks up and e-mail them, what's your trick for getting your online presence out in the database ether? For me, you have to do these bizarre random searches, like "chernobyl snowman" or "ramsay's of oregon" or "slut blog." On the plus side, from my Google self-search, I learned a lot. It turns out that I'm evidently a football coach, an electrical engineer, a professor of Jewish studies at Harvard, and the co-star of the movie Cybernator. Who knew?


Mike said...

Yeah. "Michael Loewinger" is pretty specific, but amazingly I think there is actually another one out there somewhere.

DL said...

I think I'm the only one who has the name David Loewinger and is breathing. There are more Loewingers out there than I thought, though

DL said...

Actually on second look, apparently there's a David Samuel Loewinger, born in 1904 who is some kind of religion scholar.