Rational Security 2.0: The 'Truth Fairy' Edition

By Jen Patja Howell
Wednesday, May 4, 2022, 12:01 PM

This week, Alan, Quinta and Scott were joined by Jeffrey Kosseff, cybersecurity law professor at the U.S. Naval Academy, to hash through some of the week's big national security news, including: 

  • “One Letter Off KGB, Two Letters Away from DGAF.” The Department of Homeland Security has taken heat this week for creating an internal Disinformation Governance Board, which partisan critics have railed against as a federal “Ministry of Truth” responsible for policing speech. What’s the real story behind this group? And does it warrant all this fervor?
  • “One Bad Mother Tucker.” A newly published New York Times report documents how Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show makes unprecedented use of racist rhetoric and partisan fear-mongering. What new did we learn? And what broader impact should we expect this report to have?
  • “Chutes and Escalation Ladders.” While Russian President Vladimir Putin has made a habit of invoking his country’s nuclear arsenal in response to Western reactions to his invasion of Ukraine, he so far hasn’t made any signs toward actually using it. But is this about to change? And how should the United States and its allies respond?

For object lessons, Alan endorsed his neighbor's ghost pepper-laced apple brandy, which all listeners should take as an invitation to crash at his place in Minnesota. In light of the pending repeal of Roe v. Wade, Quinta recommended that listeners read Jessica Bruder's “The Future of Abortion in a Post-Roe America." On a similar logic, Scott encouraged listeners to look back to John Hart Ely's 1973 critique of Roe "The Wages of Crying Wolf" for a vision of the pre-Roe legal landscape to which we may be returning. And Jeff recommended one of his favorite musical artists Patty Griffin and her forthcoming album, giving her some of the publicity that she won't pursue herself.