In early 1984, then-Director of the Central Intelligence Agency William Casey kicked off the “Pursuit of Excellence” campaign, which encouraged Agency employees to be the best at what they do. But before they could do that, they first had to figure out what, exactly, the CIA should be doing - prompting a frank discussion about the Agency’s goals and an even franker admission that eliminating FOIA should be on the agenda.
For as long as it’s existed, the Central Intelligence Agency has used Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) in its hunt for information that could serve as fuel for its analysis. This often meant simply reading major foreign newspapers, and monitoring for trends. When it came to understanding foreign cultural movements, CIA took it a step further - they studied the political cartoons of foreign countries. Cartoons that were essentially memes.
In 1981, a group of Brown University students found a creative way of protesting a lecture by Central Intelligence Agency Director William Casey. Then, in keeping with the CIA’s campus fixation, the Agency kept tabs on the students as they defended their free speech rights.
In a series of letters and memos from late 1983 unearthed in the Central Intelligence Agency’s archives, CIA Director William J. Casey expressed dismay over the Peace Corps’s lifetime ban on former Agency employees, claiming that it could set a precedent that would lead to the unfair stigmatization of those “tainted” by the CIA’s activities.