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I don’t know enough about Palantir to defend or support it, but your comments regarding national security are spot on. The federal IT budget is 81.6 billion dollars ( of which 31 billion was dedicated to the Department of Defense. Yet the government has been repeatedly hacked- the NSA itself has been compromised more than once. We, as a nation, are over invested in conventional weaponry while there is a national crisis in IT/infrastructure. It’s gotten to the point where ordinary citizens cannot trust government with personal information, and that’s a very deep problem.

Security is sovereignty. Which is more relevant: bombing dissidents overseas, or protecting the elderly from phishing? I would argue the second, as identity theft in government compromises our most basic democratic rights like voting and taxation. Where is our digital defense? Federal security standards are largely based on audit and forensics rather than detection and prevention. Federal IT contracts are ruled by entrenched interests rather than effectiveness. The USDS is trying to remedy this, but their staff and budget aren’t even close to 31 billion dollars.

Citizens are the most important resource of a republic, or a democracy. If you cannot reliably identify the citizens, or their identity is constantly at risk, the nation has no credibility. The irony of identity politics in the prosecution of Palantir is tremendous: their datacentric approach is essential to the security of every citizen in the nation.

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