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" Hedge-fund managers make too much money relative to their social utility. I wish their rewards were a bit closer to those of, say, schoolteachers. "
" The ISI is above all a paramilitary organization. It doesn't do all that much collection of intelligence. It's not a very good spy agency, but it's good at running covert action. "
" The world has changed, the CIA is having to change, and again, the challenge for someone like me as a spy novelist is to write realistically about where they're actually going. "
" It's a genuine dilemma for governments, deciding how much information to share in this threat-filled era. "
" As so many writers know, the experience of creating an imaginary world is closer to dreaming than it is to normal, grit-your-teeth work. It's preconscious rather than conscious. Ideas fall into your head, and the book writes you, rather than the other way around. "
" Panic is a natural human response to danger, but it's one that severely compounds the risk. "
" Empty political space will be filled by extremists unless the United States and its allies build strong local forces that can suppress terrorist groups and warlords both. When the U.S. creates such local forces, it must be persistent. If it withdraws from these efforts, as America did in Iraq in 2011, it invites mayhem. "
" The nation's chronic weakness is its political system, which is nearing dysfunction. If the U.S. can elect better political leadership, it should be able to manage problems better than most competitors. "
" The Chinese are planning a manned mission to the moon sometime after 2020, and subsequently, to Mars. The U.S. has abandoned that dream. "
" We haven't usually had to face the extreme questions about liberty and order because we're not a nation of extremists. We love freedom and good government both. "
" Maybe it's the spy novelist in me looking for a future plot, but I hope the U.S. and its allies are thinking how to operate 'unconventionally' in Iraq and Syria in ways that undermine the Islamic State. "
" During an economic crisis, what matters is that the government keeps its foot on the accelerator. "
" The best restraint is old-fashioned market discipline, in which financial traders know that they, personally, will lose a ton of money if they take risky bets that don't pan out. "
" Things felt pretty crazy on earth in 1969, but the cosmos was friendly. Astronauts had round-trip tickets; they got home. "
" It's easier for China to assert its maritime power by creating artificial islands in the South China Sea than by defying the U.S. Pacific Fleet with an aircraft carrier. "
" In a chaotic world, U.S. diplomats will probably have even less contact with the people they need to reach. "
" The European Union needs to reinvent its security system. It needs to break the stovepipes that prevent sharing information, enforcing borders and protecting citizens. "
" We're grappling with the same issue facing all advanced economies - how to revive growth and distribute its fruits more fairly. An America that can tackle that problem head-on can perhaps help revive a stagnant global economy. "
" The Founding Fathers' instructions were clear: The right to free speech includes bad speech; it means tolerance of ideas that many find obnoxious. "
" My guess is that before Obama departs, he will adopt some of the more aggressive military options he has been resisting, such as 'safe zones' inside Syria and more aggressive deployment of U.S. special forces. "
" The CIA in real life, we know, is looking for new kinds of cover. It's looking for new platforms, as they like to say, and it's trying to use the revolution in communications technology, the ability to use all sorts of corporate entities in ways that are hard to detect to get our spies in the places where they need to be. "
" CIA officers aren't idiots. They knew they were heading into deep water - legally and morally - when they signed up for the interrogation program. That's part of the agency's ethos - doing the hard jobs that other departments prudently avoid. "
" Real security will come when it's a moneymaker for private companies who want to satisfy public demand for an Internet that isn't crawling with bugs. "
" Intelligence services exist to do things that are illegal abroad. They exist to tell lies. "
" Europeans don't like to talk about intelligence, and they often pretend their countries don't spy. "
" Middle Eastern wars rarely end with outright victory and permanent stability, so the word 'settlement' may promise too much. At best, for many years, it may simply mean stable ceasefire lines, reduced bloodshed, fewer refugees, and less terrorism. "
" Experts say that Britain and France have strong spy agencies; Germany's is competent but afraid to level with its public; the rest are relatively weak, and there is no Europe-wide spy agency. "
" Chinese experts noted that the U.S. economy has rebounded from the 2008 crash more strongly than some analysts here had expected, while China's own growth is slowing after several decades of rocket-ship acceleration. "
" I began writing fiction because it was the only way to tell all the intricacies of a real-life spy story. "
" Politicians need to rethink their reflexive invocations of the Second Amendment and the idea that the gun lobby is too powerful to challenge. "
" Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, arguably President Obama's best Cabinet appointment, has been leading a quiet revolution in clean-energy technology. Innovation is transforming this industry, costs are plummeting and entrepreneurs are devising radical new systems that create American jobs - in addition to protecting the planet. "