In the new book, "The Org" by Ray Fisman and Tim Sullivan, they talk about how pre 9/11 the FBI had clear and measurable goals and objectives. Catch bad guys, and assit DOJ in winning cases.
Post 9/11 domestic intelligence became their #1 objective. The problem becomes how do you measure and reward staff for doing well at intelligence gathering? Compounding this was
*everyone in the agency has been hired and promoted based on their crime fighting skills not intelligence gathering skills
* because crime is mostly regional, offices are NOT used to working together
The book doesn't talk about these fake plots, but I'm going to imagine that this is what crime fighters do to make it look like they are doing the work of domestic intelligence.