You may think I'm making a roundabout political point by lumping the banks along with the government as "The Powers That Be".
You'd be wrong. There is a direct connection and I'm making a direct argument.
The UK Guardian is right, I consider this stuff just as mind-blowing as Edward Snowden's revelations about PRISM and wiretapping. Bank of America can't possibly be the only corporate giant who considered assembling a mercenary cadre "Intelligence Team" to dig up dirt and _initiate_ smears against _political_ adversaries. And guess what? They retained Booz Allen Hamilton (the private contractor who employed Snowden on behalf of the NSA), Palantir, Stratfor, all the same contractors who do the spying for the government. If you think that we can trust big companies like Google and Bank of America with our personal data because they're private companies, but you also think the government shouldn't be monitoring your personal and financial data.... THERE IS NO DISTINCTION ANYMORE. If you think private companies don't have an incentive to engage in personal attacks, abuse your personal data or share it with government agencies, because there's no way it would help their bottom line... you got another think coming.
Barrett Brown's Revelations Every Bit As Explosive As Edward Snowden's
Brown made a splash in February 2011 by helping to uncover "Team Themis", a project by intelligence contractors retained by Bank of America to demolish the hacker society known as Anonymous and silence sympathetic journalists like Glenn Greenwald... The campaign reportedly involved a menagerie of contractors: Booz Allen Hamilton, a billion-dollar intelligence industry player and Snowden's former employer; Palantir, a PayPal-inspired and -funded outfit that sells "data-mining and analysis software that maps out human social networks for counterintelligence purposes"; and HBGary Federal, an aspirant consultancy in the intelligence sector.
The Team Themis story began in late 2010, when Julian Assange warned WikiLeaks would release documents outlining an "ecosystem of corruption [that] could take down a bank or two." Anticipating that it might be in Assange's sights, Bank of America went into damage-control mode and, as the New York Times reported, assembled "a team of 15 to 20 top Bank of America officials … scouring thousands of documents in the event that they become public." To oversee the review, Bank of American brought in Booz Allen Hamilton.