These are tough times for the Central Intelligence Agency. It's not just the blown calls on Iraq. Or the bruising turf battles with the White House. There's the series of internal purges. And, of course, the constant threat of another terrorist attack. No wonder the Agency is having trouble hiring good people.But still, can things have grown so dire at Langley that the CIA has to resort to gimmicks like this wink-wink-trying-to-be-ironic-and-cool-but-instead-looking-even-more-dorky recruiting websiteThe "CIA personality quiz" is supposed to show how the Agency needs all types to function. So the exam offers up a series of questions, about your favorite leisure activities, the "kind of transportation you prefer," and what super power you'd like to have. And then the site tells you what kind of valuable asset to the CIA you'd be.If the super power you want is flight, for example, and your dream is to climb Mt. Everest, according to the Agency, you're a "Daring Thrill Seeker." If you prefer shopping on Rodeo Drive and sunbathing on a yacht, that means you're a "Innovative Pioneer." If you'd like to have ESP and a designer wardrobe, that qualifies you as an "Impressive Mastermind." Naturally.Somehow, this is all meant to dispel myths about what it's like to work for the Agency. Take Myth #1, for instance: "Youll Never See Your Family and Friends Again." Au contraire, the site says. "The work we do may be secret, but that doesnt mean your life will be. Because the variety of CIA careers is similar to that of any major corporation. So your friends and family will still be part of your life."Nor will your work be all that dangerous. "Car chases through the alleyways of a foreign city are common on TV, but theyre not what a CIA career is about. And, they dont compare with the reality of being part of worldwide intelligence operations supporting a global mission."And that grueling background check? Don't sweat it. "Because of our national security role, CIA applicants must meet specific qualifications but, dont worry. Getting caught smoking in high school isnt enough to disqualify you. Your intellect, skills, experience and desire to serve the nation are most important to us."Unless you're setting up Agency websites, I guess.
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