In a journalistic poll to determine the Top 100 Works of Journalism in the 20th Century, I.F. Stone's Weekly was rated 16th. He considered himself an independent journalist and one-man band cranking out his four-page newsletter from 1953 to 1971. Many contemporary journalists consider him the pioneer of speaking truth to power.
In this inventive and hard-hitting documentary directed by Fred Peabody, journalists such as Amy Goodman (Democracy Now!), Glenn Greenwald (The Intercept), Matt Taibbi (Rolling Stone), and the iconoclastic filmmaker Michael Moore pay tribute to this bold critic of the politics of secrecy and reporting as a subsidiary of entertainment.
To see how they operate, Peabody tracks Rolling Stone contributing editor Mike Taibbi as he tries to make some sense out of the 2016 U.S. primary in New Hampshire. Listening to him read from his own commentaries, we appreciate his acerbic wit which is similar to that of his mentor I. F. Stone.
We follow a story by independent journalist John Carlos Frey as he investigates the cover-up of mass graves of undocumented migrants in Texas. He also makes it quite clear that most magazines, newspapers, and the mass media have little or no interest whatsoever in a report like this one.
Amy Goodman and Nermeen Shaikh are seen working in their New York newsroom and then interviewing individuals in Egypt during the great rallies there.
Glenn Greenwald and Jeremy Scahill are the two creative co-founders of The Intercept, a very popular Internet magazine known for its up-to-date and thought-provocative reporting.
Peabody also presents brief commentaries by Noam Chomsky, Ralph Nader, Chris Hedges, and Carl Bernstein who each probe the essence of journalism and its important role in our culture.
The women and men profiled on this documentary carry on the feisty spirit of I.F. Stone!