Statistics, politics, and failures of intelligence analysis

Mark Kleiman has an interesting post on intelligence analysis: "Third, the real problem has to do with what the military calls command influence (in the context of courts martial and similar proceedings) and a background structural bias caused by differential rewards for different conclusions. The CIA was founded to prevent another Pearl Harbor. 'Worst Case' assessments are a way of life. No one ever asks what the down-side of a threat overestimate might be; everyone knows the danger of a threat underestimate. "


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