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Saving face — through the FOIA personal privacy exemption

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  1. Freedom of Information
When it comes to one of the more bizarre FOIA b(6) redactions you'll ever see, a picture will speak much more effectively…

When it comes to one of the more bizarre FOIA b(6) redactions you’ll ever see, a picture will speak much more effectively than words for this post:  have a look at the photo in this CNN.com article.

The prisoner costume controversy aside, more attention should indeed be focused on what exactly took the Department of Homeland Security so long to release the requested pictures in this case. The seemingly obvious answer — that the photos were suppressed to ensure the swift and unencumbered nomination of Julie Myers as DHS’ new chief of Immigration and Customs Enforcement — is completely unacceptable. 

Unless there were technical reasons for the delay — and there’s no indication that there were to a degree that could delay production of the photos for three months — there should be some considerable outrage over the outcome here. Even if the photos, in retrospect, ultimately would’ve impacted Myers’ Senate confirmation hearings very little, if it comes out that they were withheld for such crass political reasons, heads — redacted or not — ought to roll.