Friday, October 06, 2006

Imagine There's No FOIA

Last night I saw the U.S. vs John Lennon, which focuses on the Nixon era but also takes a few potshots at the current administration obsessed with surveillance and covering over the violence of a war abroad. Strangely, the official website for the movie is designed to imitate the layout of the Drudge Report, an homage that probably gives the Right too much credit. Unfortunately, the film itself uses some distracting foreground/background digital effects with source material, such as black and white photographs, a technique that I also found annoying in the documentary The Kid Stays in the Picture. Luckily, Jon Wiener of U.C. Irvine makes several appearances that present his research on the monitoring of "subversive" politics during the sixties as accessible to mainstream audiences. Jon's piece at the Huffington Post is also worth reading. Check out Lennon's FBI File, which is available online in the Freedom of Information Act Reading Room. Given the way FOIA has been weakened, who knows how much present day anti-war activists will ever know about their files.



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