A New Book On The Father Of Federal FOIA…

Thanks to The Miami Herald for letting me know about this great new book!

The late Sacramento congressman John Moss led a right-to-know revolution whose contours he never could have imagined.

Now, this one-time appliance salesman and unlikely author of the Freedom of Information Act is the subject of a new biography. Penned by a former staffer, published by a university press, the book mirrors the life of an admirable if sometimes stodgy lawmaker.

“I think Moss accomplished so much in his life,” author Michael R. Lemov said, “and yet he’s almost forgotten now.”

Titled “People’s Warrior,” Lemov’s book sketches Moss’s early travails that included a mother who died when he was 12, an alcoholic father who abandoned the family and a prematurely ended Sacramento Junior College education.

The book conveys, as well, the formality of a public figure who, even now, the 76-year-old Lemov still periodically refers to as Mr. Moss.

“I never called him John,” Lemov said. “Maybe ‘Mr. Chairman,’ once in a while.”

But mostly, policy and legislative politics dominate the 237-page book set for a July 1 release. Two signal accomplishments stand out.

In 1966, after more than a decade of laying the groundwork, Moss muscled the Freedom of Information Act across the finish line. It’s made a difference. Last year, Moss’s legislation was used in 597,415 separate FOIA requests filed with federal agencies.

 

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/05/27/2238645/new-book-profiles-longtime-california.html#ixzz1NcCPYCxU

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