The specialized language of government information policy is itself a reflection of the intricacies and convolutions of that policy.
A newly updated and substantially expanded lexicon (pdf) of information-related terms, prepared by Susan L. Maret, provides a valuable map to the language and the terrain of U.S. government information policy.
Hundreds of entries, ranging from the well-known or obvious (“classified”) to the obscure and recondite (e.g., EPITS), are presented with lucid definitions and pointers to official source documents.
“These terms represent a virtual seed catalog to federal informationally-driven procedures, policies, and practices involving, among other matters, the information life cycle, record keeping, ownership over information, collection and analysis of intelligence information, security classification categories and markings, censorship, citizen right-to-know, deception, propaganda, secrecy, technology, surveillance, threat, and warfare,” Dr. Maret writes.
“The terms reported here — which have often been interpreted widely from one federal agency to another — play a significant role in shaping social and political reality, and furthering government policy.”
See “On Their Own Terms: A Lexicon with an Emphasis on Information-Related Terms Produced by the U.S. Federal Government” by Susan Maret, Ph.D., updated October 2006. (An MS Word version is here.)
A uniform software tool for inputting building permit data would make the U.S. Census Bureau’s Building Permit Survey (BPS) more reliable, and it would also facilitate more fine-grained geographical analysis of new housing development.
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) should prioritize funding water projects for local governments that would expand the production of new housing in their service areas if given the water resources to do so.
Congress needs to amend the definition of a manufactured home to remove the phrase “on a permanent chassis.” By doing this, Congress can eliminate wasted construction materials, allow new multifamily design options under the HUD Code, and unleash competition from factory-built manufactured housing.
Satellite images show that the Navy has begun construction of a new nuclear weapons storage and handling facility at Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana.