The world never fails to amuse – this is a constant. What changes, however, are the people being amused – there’s always somebody laughing. Don’t worry if you’re not laughing now, because someday you will be. Those of a certain breed will get the jokes for a time, before another is granted the keys to the laugh locker.
Right now, those keys are firmly in my hand – I’ve been finding the world more hilarious everyday. And I’m not the only one. Doan Thin Hoang, one of the femme fatales accused of assassinating Kim Jong-Nam wore a shirt proudly bearing the sigil of millennial mirth across her chest: LOL. What’s more, she claims the smearing of VX, one of the deadliest chemical weapons known to man, to the North Koreans face was merely in jest. (‘It’s just a prank, bro’ as they say on the internet these days). LOL, indeed.
The contents of the Wiki Leaks dump known as ‘Vault7’ is even more bizarre, and consequently even more funny. Down the rabbit hole of insidious and diabolical methods of state surveillance you shall find all kinds of ridiculous absurdities, the names of the programs being the first. Although Wiki Leaks claims that the CIA has been trying to adopt more military terms for their operations to tap into Department of Defense money streams, the terms for the underlying applications used in such operations are anything but.
A buddy of mine in the cyber-security industry told me that those in the sphere
“love their names”. Looking from Project Brutal Kangaroo to Project Magical Mutt(yes, really), I couldn’t agree more. A juvenile creativity with words seems endemic amongst the cloistered elite with the power to pry into almost every nook and cranny of your life. Some are clearly fans of Doctor Who, naming their program which turns your TV into a microphone they can tap into after the popular ‘Weeping Angel’ villains of the show. Others are clearly video game enthusiasts, apologizing in the notes for “noobing it up” for errors in the development of their programs (noob is a derogatory abbreviation of ‘newbie’ yelled over the internet at video game participants playing poorly). I could barely believe my eyes at the farce – I told my friend it was as though these elite CIA operators thought they were still playing video games. He said it was symptomatic of the current generation raised on such past times making their way into the agency. This generation, he said “Just don’t take their responsibilities in the agency very seriously.” A sign of the times perhaps.
The response to the leaks has been even better. Those vigilant souls labelled ‘conspiracy theorists’ by the mainstream feel euphorically vindicated at the proof that 1984 is closer than ever before. In one corner of the internet I frequent, one user commented triumphantly:
“In the early 90s I said to my ex husband they can watch you through the TV” to which another responded:
“I have a TV ~ But I don’t watch it. Instead I have it pointed at another TV which loops TeleTubbies 24/7 just for s***s & giggles.”
I didn’t care if the latter’s post was serious or not, I was too busy laughing.