On Allen Ginsberg's 89th birthday, read his FBI file

Mike from Muckrock sez, "'My name is Allen Ginsberg and I sleep with whoever I want.' So noted the FBI, in its 89 pages tracking the life, lovers, and political activism of the American poet, who was born this day in 1926."

"His files detail the agency's creepy fascination with his personal life, while it was his own flamboyance that ultimately held them at bay: 'No interview of Ginsberg is recommended at any time,' agents wrote, 'in view of his narcotic and sexual proclivities, his psychiatric history and his connections with mass media.' Happy birthday Allen!"

(Bonus Allen Ginsburg jam: "Put Down That Cigarette Rag.")

The FBI decided to dig deeper into Ginsberg's background in 1965 after learning that he would be traveling to Cuba to judge a poetry competition. A February 1965 memo from FBI headquarters directed the New York field office to initiate an investigation to "ascertain whether he is engaged in any activities which would be considered inimical to the interest of the U.S."

Two months later, after conducting dozens of informant interviews and checks of arrest, telephone and other records, the New York office sent back its findings. Their report concluded that Ginsberg's "bizarre" activities did not warrant being added to the "Security Index" of potentially dangerous individuals to be arrested if martial law were declared in the United States.

The New York agents were ordered to conduct their investigation via "circumspect" means and not to interview Ginsberg directly. They determined that such an interview was not warranted and could potentially embarrass the FBI.

FBI: Allen Ginsberg "bizarre," but not dangerous [Muckrock]