Turn On, Log In, Tune Out


Leary at the State University of New York at Buffalo during a lecture tour in 1969. Image via.

From The New York Times:

In 1970, Americans were on edge over terrorist activities, a bellicose president railed against his enemies and an energized left argued among its factions.

This is the backdrop, strain as you might to envision it, of “The Most Dangerous Man in America,” a fun and exhausting recap of the LSD proselytizer Timothy Leary’s efforts to outrun Richard Nixon and the American law.

In his prolonged getaway attempt, Leary escaped from a prison in California (where he had been sent for possession of marijuana); adopted a false identity and fled to Algeria, where he was reluctantly protected by Eldridge Cleaver and the Black Panthers, the only group then recognized by Algerians as “legitimate representatives of the American people”; absconded to Switzerland; and landed in Afghanistan, where he hoped to take advantage of his acquaintanceship with the king’s acid-friendly nephew. He conspired with Bill Ayers and other domestic terrorists in the Weathermen. He wrote to Hugh Hefner begging for money. He was Charles Manson’s neighbor in jail.

The book is not without incident.

“On the Lam With Timothy Leary”, John Williams, The New York Times