"It's a sensible economic move combining cheap land, power, and other local resources. NSA isn't the evil archetype presented in the movies, its an agency of people, like you and me, working to keep Joe Average safe from some very real enemies."
Say an average server can record the data for 100 actions per second (e.g. web page, call dialled etc.). And the average person does 1000 recordable actions a day.
$2 billion / $1000 a blade = say 1 million blades + same in running costs.
= enough capacity to monitor 8 billion peoples transactions.
Seems to me there are an AWWWFFFFUUULL lot of 'real enemies' the NSA is monitoring there, the entire planet and then some. I don't doubt NSA is stuffed full of low level, well meaning people, but at the end of the day, so is the Chinese Secret Police, or the Iranian Religious Police... or even the dotty UK housewives that report every suspicious tourist because the MET tells them terrorists takes photos.....
All a bunch of low level people who think they're doing the right thing because they are told it is right.
You know what, I saw a TV program the other day that shocked me. Some nutter was proposing a conspiracy theory about the UK tube bombs, he pointed out that the official claims that the terrorist were on a particular train, but that train was cancelled that day.
What shocked me was the TV reporter asking whether this person should be allowed to forment 'dissent' by making these claims. So presumably the reporter only ever reports the official government line? You just don't expect phrases like that from a reporter. From a Chinese Government spokesman yes, not a reporter. The idea that someone should be prevented from pointing out these things because it may encourage dissent.....