Monday, June 22, 2015

The Story Of The "Helter Skelter" Door


"The "Helter Skelter" door found at Spahn Ranch. Although the words Healter Skelter had been found printed at the Labianca residence, its importance was missed." -- from Helter Skelter


The famous "Helter Skelter" door was featured prominently in Vincent Bugliosi's (with Curt Gentry) Helter Skelter as evidence of both the term's supposed importance to the "Manson Family" and of the ineptness of the Los Angeles Police Department. In his book Bugliosi recalls his discovery of the door and his frustration with incompetent cops:

On May 25 [1970], I was going through LAPD's tubs on the LaBianca case when I noticed, standing against the wall, a wooden door. On it was a multicolored mural; the lines from a nursery rhyme, "1,2,3,4,5,6,7 -- All Good Children Go to Heaven"; and, in large letters, the words "Helter Skelter Is Coming Down Fast."
Stunned, I asked [LAPD Sergeant Manuel] Gutierrez, "Where in the hell did you get that?"
"Spahn Ranch."
"When?"
He checked the yellow property envelope affixed to the door. 
"November 25, 1969."
"You mean for five months, while I've been desperately trying to link the killers to Helter Skelter, you've had this door, with those very words printed on it, the same bloody words that were found at the LaBianca residence?"
Gutierrez admitted that they had. The door, it turned out, had been found on a cabinet in Juan Flynn's trailer. It had been considered so unimportant that to date no one had even bothered to book it into evidence. (Helter Skelter, page 399, early paperback edition)

"Helter Skelter Is Coming Down Fast" might be sinister enough (more sinister, perhaps, than "Love," "Peace," "Elves," and "Happy"), but there are two other inscriptions on the door that are also of interest to us. One is the quote "1,2,3,4,5,6,7 -- All Good Children Go to Heaven" and the other is "Hi Collie I love you." 

Going by Bugliosi's account of events, the first quote shows how Bugliosi was either unhip or deliberately misleading, because while the line might have originally been taken from a nursery rhyme it is here likelier a quote from the ending refrain of the Beatles song "You Never Give Me Your Money" from the album Abbey Road. The Abbey Road album was released on 26 September 1969 in the United Kingdom and on 1 October 1969 in the United States. Therefore the writing on the door had to have been done later than early October (and earlier than when the door was picked up by the police on November 25, 1969).

But who was still at Spahn Ranch after the beginning of October, 1969? Hadn't the "Manson Family" retreated to the desert by that time?

Not all of them. Many "Family members" and associates did not go to the desert until weeks after the first mass exodus from Spahn Ranch. Among these latter was Sue "Country Sue" Bartell, who stayed on at Spahn's.  And it was Sue Bartell who was responsible for the infamous writing on the infamous door. (Bartell would eventually be arrested in Death Valley during the same law enforcement sweep that picked up Charles Manson on October 12, 1969.)


Country Sue Bartell

In a May, 2000 interview Bartell recalled, "I didn't go [to the desert in the fall of 1969], but everybody else did. Which meant that there was nobody left to take care of George, take care of the horses, take care of the ranch that Charlie loved. And he left three of us girls behind and four of us boys behind [at Spahn's]. And that would have been Cappy and me and another friend of mine from the valley, Coleen --  Collie. Collie Sinclair. Her and I were the authors of the infamous cupboard door, that said 'Helter Skelter' on it. We were writing down the words to a song we liked. Period. Nothing scary." 

And therein lies the significance of the second quote, "Hi Collie I love you."

The evidence of the door itself (the reference to Collie Sinclair and the inclusion of a line from a Beatles album that was not released until October 1, 1969) corroborates Bartell's version of its decoration, namely that it was done two months after the murders by people who had no involvement with those murders. Thus, the evidentiary "importance" given the door by Assistant District Attorney Bugliosi was somewhat muted. Perhaps that is why, aside from the two notations above from Helter Skelter, there is never any further mention of the "Helter Skelter" door. 


(But as a PS, does anybody know what happened to it?)






89 comments:

black_love_in_space said...

If this is true then it is the most H.S. damning information I have gleaned in two years of obsessively lurking and back-reading on this site, I love it!

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

"I didn't go [to the desert in the fall of 1969], but everybody else did. Which meant that there was nobody left to take care of George, take care of the horses, take care of the ranch that Charlie loved."

I know how simple and dumb this sounds, but when I read things like that I wish they just.... hadn't murdered people. I wish they'd stayed at Spahn in peace, or at Barker, or on the moon, or anywhere, under a peaceful sky.

equinox12314 said...



George,

Regarding what happened to the door, there is a thread over at TruthOnTateLaBianca discussing whether Bugliosi took any momentos. The whereabouts of the door is questioned and it would appear that it was discussed on another thread, but I am not a member there, so I can't search for content.

http://truthontatelabianca.com/threads/did-bugliosi-keep-mementos-from-the-crime-scenes.5174/page-2

Possibly your best bet for an answer would be Bo at the excellent Cielodrive.com. He gave the answer as to what happened to the sword used at Hinman.

equinox12314 said...


Michael,

"...I know how simple and dumb this sounds, but when I read things like that I wish they just.... hadn't murdered people. I wish they'd stayed at Spahn in peace, or at Barker, or on the moon, or anywhere, under a peaceful sky."

You would then have to ask whether that same group of young people living at Spahn would have engaged in nine brutal murders if they hadn't met Charlie. I don't think so. Yes, some of them had been in trouble with law enforcement, but the events of August 1969 were on a different level.

equinox12314 said...


OFFTOPIC

Sorry to go off topic, but if you look at Bobby B's Twitter account, there is a photo of him posted on 20 June posing with an Albino Burmese python!!! Is this Photoshopped, or do the Oregon prisons keep wild creatures (other than their inmates that is!!).

https://twitter.com/BeauSoleilBobby

grimtraveller said...

Country Sue said....
"And that would have been Cappy and me and another friend of mine from the valley, Coleen -- Collie. Collie Sinclair. Her and I were the authors of the infamous cupboard door, that said 'Helter Skelter' on it. We were writing down the words to a song we liked. Period. Nothing scary."


There again they must have heard the phrase in their short time with the folk at Spahn or maybe they'd heard tales or reminiscing about the nightclub. Either that or it's the hottest 60s pop culture coincidence barring "Lucy in the sky with diamonds."

AustinAnn74 said...

They also had written the end part of the lyrics for The Beatles song "You Never Give Me Your Money." 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 all good children go to heaven......(I love that song, btw.)

equinox12314 said...



Grimtraveller

Yes, indeed. Whether the writing was on the door before or after the arrests, it is irrelevant. The 'Helter Skelter bullshit' was well and truly in their psyche by that point.

George Stimson said...

Yes, Beatles music was only heard in the context of Spahn Ranch in the '60s....

Robert Hendrickson said...

"I know how simple and dumb this sounds, but when I read things like that I wish they just....hadn't murdered people.

I which they'd stayed at home, or in College, or on a Disnyland ride, or anywhere, under a peaceful "American" sky.

equinox12314 said...



Mr H,

"...I which they'd stayed at home, or in College, or on a Disnyland ride, or anywhere, under a peaceful "American" sky."


But if they had not met Charlie, do you think these young people would have carried out the nine murders?

Cielodrive.com said...

Thanks equinox,

Since I posted that comment on TOTLB, the Manson sword has been located and is where it should be. I'll check on the door, I don't recall seeing it.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

OK Robert, if your angle is mockery of my conventional sentiment, fine, fair enough, but you're putting words in my mouth. I wish they had rejected America, society, all human norms, and lived a strange new form of family in the desert, close to the wilderness, familiar with death and joy. Without murdering. I'm sorry if that's insufficiently acidic for you....

ColScott said...

Matt

In a previous posting some reader mentioned Linda Alvarez and then said they were happy that you did not do coverage of her. Which of course is weird because why even mention her.

That said I expect you are working on an epic posting about her/BUG. Let me know otherwise I might return to blogging and well we don't want that.

equinox12314 said...


ColScott,

Come back blogging!!! Or what about a compromise - you could do the post about Bugliosi/Alvarez on THIS site as a guest writer.

ColScott said...

equinox
The terms of the "civil union" between Matt and I indicate that all future blogging is to be approved by Matt.

equinox12314 said...


ColScott,

That isn't too romantic is it? It sounds like Matt is the dominant partner in the relationship.

I am sure there are many who would like to see you contributing either here, or at your own site. I thought Alvarez' timing was totally insensitive vis a vis the Widow Bugliosi. Having said that, it sounds like she could reveal a lot of dirt about him, especially that he is no longer around to sue anyone. It is questionable whether VB would have discussed TLB with her. I am surprised more females haven't come out of the woodwork.



ColScott said...

Insensitive? The only thing rude was staying silent about your child's goddamn father for years while he took bows and talked about what a great family guy he was. No wonder he thought Gail fucked the milkman, little troll couldn't keep in zipped.

equinox12314 said...


"...No wonder he thought Gail fucked the milkman, little troll couldn't keep in zipped."

LMAO. Proof that you should be back writing in the TLB blogsphere.

Matt said...

I had no plans whatsoever to post about Linda Alvarez. It wasn't on my radar screen. However a fat Latina mistress, a milkman and the Col would make for great entertainment wherever it happened to turn up.

Vera Dreiser said...

Wow,racist much, Matt? Drinking the Stimson juice I see. What fucking difference does it make what ethnicity she is, or, for that matter, her body size. Oh right, that's what you do here. Go after people for how they look, even when you have no idea how they look.

ziggyosterberg said...


@Vera Dreiser

Is calling someone "a fat Latina mistress", racist?

If it is, I can assure you that some of my best friends are fat Latina mistresses.....

ziggyosterberg said...

@Michael - I think that's one of the things that draws people into this case and keeps them there - the question of why something beautiful had to turn ugly. I personally think that it had a lot to do with Tex Watson's appearance on the scene, although I know that others will disagree with me.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

@ziggy - I agree, but in my own case with one major qualifier. When I watch footage of what kids were doing, thinking, and saying in the 1960s I struggle to find beauty in it. I see a lot of childish moral posturing, and a shallow pseudo-spiritual foundation underpinning a lifestyle of self-gratification (with a large dose of finger-wagging and preaching thrown in). They are the babies who threw their parents out with the bathwater.

I'm always amused by what John Ratzenberger (Cliff from Cheers) said:

"I was at Woodstock — I built the stage. And when everything fell apart, and people were fighting for peanut-butter sandwiches, it was the National Guard who came in and saved the same people who were protesting them. So when Hillary Clinton a few years ago wanted to build a Woodstock memorial, I said it should be a statue of a National Guardsman feeding a crying hippie."

Now, I know Manson wasn't a hippie. But he played the role so well he managed to discredit the entire subculture. Makes you wonder if someone prepped him for that role... (any takers? Robert???)

Robert Hendrickson said...

Sorry Michael, I meant "They'd" (US Military) stayed home in America instead of KILLING in Vietnam for the psyco LBJ.

AND EQ - if there was NO Vietnam War, there NEVER wouold have been a Tate ? LaBianca Massacre, EXCEPTING that TEX alone was cursed by HIS mother.

Suggest that YOU (Matt) invite Linda's daughter to a discussion on the blog.

equinox12314 said...


@Robert Hendrickson


Mr H,

When you posted "...I which they'd stayed at home, or in College, or on a Disnyland ride, or anywhere, under a peaceful "American" sky", I, like Michael Hlousek-Nagle, thought you meant the Manson Family. We didn't realise you were referring to the US military.

I agree with you up to a point on the Vietnam War being influential over the members of the Family - making them disaffected young people and therefore ripe for picking by a conman like Charlie. However, I do think that many of them had unsatisfactory home backgrounds, no sense of personal responsibility, coupled with the copious use of drugs. They were a disaster waiting to happen.




Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

Understood Robert, thanks for the clarification. Apologies for prickly tone of reply!

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

equinoxonetwothreeonefour:

I agree with you up to a point on the Vietnam War being influential over the members of the Family - making them disaffected young people and therefore ripe for picking by a conman like Charlie. However, I do think that many of them had unsatisfactory home backgrounds, no sense of personal responsibility, coupled with the copious use of drugs. They were a disaster waiting to happen.

So my question would be, why only this group? Maybe a perfect storm: Vietnam, drugs, rejection of pig society, plus the added factors of Manson's charismatic bitterness and nihilism and the psychopathic catalyst of Watson.

(And in fact, was it only this group? Were there other less 'celebrated' crimes carried out by similar groups at that time, or was this set of murders unique?)

Kevin Marx said...

Michael said:

"....When I watch footage of what kids were doing, thinking, and saying in the 1960s I struggle to find beauty in it. I see a lot of childish moral posturing, and a shallow pseudo-spiritual foundation underpinning a lifestyle of self-gratification (with a large dose of finger-wagging and preaching thrown in). They are the babies who threw their parents out with the bathwater.

I'm always amused by what John Ratzenberger (Cliff from Cheers) said:

"I was at Woodstock — I built the stage. And when everything fell apart, and people were fighting for peanut-butter sandwiches, it was the National Guard who came in and saved the same people who were protesting them. So when Hillary Clinton a few years ago wanted to build a Woodstock memorial, I said it should be a statue of a National Guardsman feeding a crying hippie."

I disagree Michael - I think the youth of the 60s contributed a lot to society then and the ripple effect of their actions are very much still ongoing today.

Peter Coyote expresses it much more eloquently than I ever could when he talks about it here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zV3qLXhmSLQ

equinox12314 said...


@Michael,

"...So my question would be, why only this group? Maybe a perfect storm: Vietnam, drugs, rejection of pig society, plus the added factors of Manson's charismatic bitterness and nihilism and the psychopathic catalyst of Watson.

(And in fact, was it only this group? Were there other less 'celebrated' crimes carried out by similar groups at that time, or was this set of murders unique?)

My response to your above questions would be that I am not aware of any crimes of the magnitude of Tate LaBianca by other similar groups at that particular point in time. However, if you are so aware, please detail them in order that we can make a point of comparison. It would be interesting to discuss. (There were, of course, unsolved murders like Marina Habe and Gaul/Sharp at that time which were breathtaking in their brutality, but we don’t know whether they were committed by individuals or groups).

My opinion regarding why only this group, would be that they had not only the uber violent Watson, but more importantly the catalyst of Charles Manson. I am not convinced that Watson was a catalyst as such. He certainly had the underlying propensity for extreme violence, but to me the catastrophe was set in motion by Charlie at Crowe. He was not obliged to sort out Watson's mess - or was he? Did Charlie have more involvement with the Crowe deal than he has ever let on? Charlie was a lifelong crook/conman who had learnt from the best inside both State and Federal prisons. His only interests were his own survival and to ensure he didn’t return to prison. A number of Family members knew of his shooting of Crowe and slashing of Hinman, so it was best to get everyone’s hands dirty and ensure Bobby B didn’t tell all to the DA.


Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

equine ox,

I'm not aware of any comparable crimes by society-rejecting groups. I merely wondered if anyone better-informed (all of you) did.

Re catalysts - it' a bit of a chicken and egg thing isn't it? We all keep asking would they have killed if they had never met Manson; but to my mind it's an equally valid question to ask whether TLB would have happened if Manson hadn't had a Watson to act as his resident psychopath. Who's to say what the true dynamic was there.

Robert Hendrickson said...

It's kind'a like this:

We are NOW treated to stories (like an ice cream cone) of some guy loses a leg - gets a titainium one - wins a foot race - and everyone cheers.

OR some guy gets his face burned and then gets to DANCE with the stars.

1969

Well FUCK man, some guy "built a stage" at Woodstock and in the poring rain Jesus came down that Golden Staircase and personally delivered God's message: "National Guard good, Hippy BAD - throwed Mommy out with bath water."

Well yeah, stage-builder - "Hippies" first generation to realize TRUTH
that Mommys have babies so Army has soldiers to play WAR.

There's a book written by the wife of the man who came back from Vietnam with NO arms NO legs, just a stump.

I doubt you'll ever hear a "teacher" "preacher" or "leader" recommend that one for reading. Isn't it a shame the TRUTH has to be such a dirty, nasty old thing.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

But Robert - you're always telling us that truth is something people invent to suit their needs, or the needs of the CIA, or LBJ, or whatever. So please, don't tell me the truth the hippies 'realized' was anything other than one more version, one more self-serving version. Don't tell me it was 'the' truth.

There can be no 'the' truth. Unless there is in fact one ultimate narrator...

War is beyond terrible. We understand that - as much as we can - even if most of us here never experienced it. But is there a point to your constantly using that fact as the answer to any and every question posed here, or using that fact to tell us we're asking the wrong questions and 'don't get it'?

Or, to put it another way, if you were to stab to death a local businessman and his wife in their home, what word would you carve in his stomach?

grimtraveller said...

black_love_in_space said...

"If this is true then it is the most H.S. damning information I have gleaned in two years of obsessively lurking and back-reading"


Not really. In many criminal cases throughout the ages, circumstantial evidence has played an important part in convicting people and still continues to. You're left with physical {and these days, DNA} evidence like fingerprints or eyewitness {or earwitness} testimony {and in England, those blasted ubiquitous CCTV cameras} otherwise. Circumstantial evidence is far more difficult to balance because it can mean anything, something or nothing, depending on the point of view of the prosecution or the defendant[s]. When it means something it can be really important because it can be an indicator of something that has real significance.
The door didn't have to have been around before the murders. Charles Manson doesn't even have to have been aware of it and it's more than likely that he wasn't. It was found on a cupboard in Juan Flynn's trailer. In and of itself it was unimportant, just a decorated piece of wood. But circumstantially it was very important because it linked potently to what Pat Krinwinkle wrote at the LaBiancas' and given that the prosecution case was that Charles Manson was the originator of the philosophy that underpinned the motive and that he had that aspect of the motive {remember there was more than one} and that he influenced the rest of the people in "the family", who wrote it wasn't relevant. You could even argue that because it was written in his absence when most of the group were in the desert, it was even more relevant, bringing to mind what Juan Flynn referred to as "his {Charlie's} reach...."


George Stimson said...

"Yes, Beatles music was only heard in the context of Spahn Ranch in the '60s...."


When it comes to the TLB case, Beatlemusic has a specific context. There has been plenty of documentation in tons of different media {written, film, TV, musicology, comics,etc} relating to the Beatles' music and how it informed and applied to countless lives, both in the 60s and beyond.
But the helter skelter door isn't related to just any old group of people.
But if it was coincidental, it was one heck of a coincidence ! Like Sadie Mae Glutz, Lucy in the sky with diamonds and "cranberry sauce" in "Strawberry Fields Forever."
On a separate note, when I first read "Helter Skelter" {this was '78 and I had bought the Penguin '77 edition for my sister} and saw the photo page, when I saw the door I caught the Abbey Road reference straight away because at the time, Abbey Road was the Beatle album I dug most of all and I loved "You never give me your money." I was keenly anticipating something being said to tie the crimes into the song but it wasn't to be. The song isn't even mentioned ! I also misread the bit that said one of the defence lawyers intended to call John Lennon as a witness to explain the meanings of some of his lyrics. I thought he'd be in it and when he didn't turn up in the book, I thought "what a swizz !"

equinox12314 said...


Hi Michael,

“…I merely wondered if anyone better-informed (all of you) did.”

I understand now, Michael. I thought you had a comparable instance(s) in mind.

“but to my mind it's an equally valid question to ask whether TLB would have happened if Manson hadn't had a Watson to act as his resident psychopath.…”

Good point! Having said that, Charlie got Bobby B to go to Hinman’s with the express purpose of robbing him. When matters got out of hand, CM allegedly told BB ‘you know what to do’. So that sounds like Charlie believed, having got to know them, that some of the Family had the capacity to murder. However, if you try to imagine the events at both Cielo and Waverley without Watson present, I think Pat would have gone to both properties and murdered if told to do so by Charlie. The only thing holding her back would have been the lack of physical strength to overpower a man. On the other hand, Leslie had to be encouraged to stab Rosemary at Waverley. I think if Watson hadn’t egged her on, she would have walked away.

In the Shorty Shea murder, if Tex hadn’t been around, it looks as though Clem would have happily done the whole job himself with the necessary back up from Bruce and others. So overall, I believe that if Tex hadn’t been around for TLB, there were others on hand who Charlie could have relied upon. Leslie did want to go the second night with the intention to murder. Ruth Ann Moorehouse said she “couldn’t wait to kill her first pig”. Charlie had spent quite a bit of time indoctrinating these young people with his philosophies.

P.S. I like your play on my name:)

equinox12314 said...


@Michael,

"...But is there a point to your constantly using that fact as the answer to any and every question posed here, or using that fact to tell us we're asking the wrong questions and 'don't get it'?"


Excellent and, as always, beautifully expressed.

Robert Hendrickson said...

Damn you Michael, you're MAKING me THINK again.

"Pig" on front door, WAR on "businessman" chest, Death to Pigs on wall, BUT "Healter Skelter" on refrigerator door ? Maybe someone is trying to tell the Cops that the Final Conflict, Battle of Armageddon, the Ultimate Black / White Race WAR is at hand ? Like, how many cops do you think know what "Armageddon" means ? NOW - Black / White race War simply means White Cop shoot Black man, but in 1969 ?

What is MORE important ? YOU speak truth or you THINK ?

Kevin Marx said...

Equinox said:

"....However, if you try to imagine the events at both Cielo and Waverley without Watson present...."

I can't imagine that at all - regardless of whatever motive/s you believe in, I cannot picture either of those crimes going down in the same way, without Watson, if indeed they would even have been committed without him.

Neither Hinman or Shea were butchered in the same way as the TLB victims. The common denominator in terms of brutality for all the murders is Watson. whilst Hinman's murder was shocking, in that it was so long and drawn out, I don't think it compares to TLB in terms of its savagery.

equinox12314 said...


@KevinMarx

What I in fact said was "However, if you try to imagine the events at both Cielo and Waverley without Watson present, I think Pat would have gone to both properties and murdered if told to do so by Charlie." My point by mentioning the very violent Ms Krenwinkel and the Hinman and Shea murders was that there were others in the Family who were capable of murder and were willing to do so at the behest of Charlie, whether Watson was present or not. In the absence of Watson, there were others available, albeit Watson's actions were more brutal. Having said that, you only have to count the number of knife wounds administered to Rosemary by Pat and Leslie, together with Pat's role in Leno's untimely demise to see that brutality wasn't limited to Tex.


"...Neither Hinman nor Shea were butchered in the same way as the TLB victims."

The fact that they were murdered should be sufficient. Both Hinman and Shea were carried out on Charlie's instructions - Watson wasn't at Hinman, and the Shea murder and body disposal involved Clem in a prominent role.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

Robert: I can't speak truth. Can you? I don't know what the facts are, let alone the truth, or even 'my' truth.

And as for thinking, sometimes I find myself thinking and I notice what I'm doing, and it all stops. In the same way that if you concentrate on walking it becomes an effort instead of being second nature. I have thoughts and notice that they are thoughts, and then I'm wondering if I actively think them, me myself, or whether a chemical process in the biological mechanism of the brain feeds them to me as though they were my own. And then everything becomes impossible. I trip over my own head.

The older I get the less I know. Heaven help me if I ever meet a charismatic bearded cult leader with certainties to offer. Nature abhors a vacuum, they say, and that is what I would compare my mind to these days.

Maybe Helter Skelter was the motive. Maybe it was bullshit. Maybe it was both. Maybe it was nothing. Maybe God inspired Manson to commit the TLB murders in order to throw Polanski's career off balance and thereby prevent him from making a movie exposing God as being Satan's girlfriend, who knows. I don't know. You knew them, so I guess maybe you do.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

equinox - can't argue with that. Manson somehow always seemed to have someone around willing to kill for him. Can't be a coincidence. It might have taken an individual like Tex to make things as ghastly as they were on those two nights, but on the other hand, what Manson wanted done to Saladin Nader was not exactly clean and sanitized either.

Maybe I forget too easily the Tex who tells Charles Melton, "Maybe Charlie will let me grow a beard someday".

equinox12314 said...


@Michael,

Yes, we also have to remember that Tex owed Charlie for Crowe and it was payback time. I don't know the first thing about the effects of various drugs, but I wonder if Tex's actions on those two nights would have been so brutal if he hadn't been on that particular cocktail of drugs.

If the Watson tapes do indeed contain details of other murders, Tex was unlikely to talk about anything that would implicate himself. Therefore, it would suggest other Family members had carried out any additional killings.



Kevin Marx said...

Equinox - On reflection, contrary to what I said earlier, motive really is the determining factor in whether things would have been different had Tex not been around. I believe the primary motive for Cielo was a drug burn initiated by Watson. Therefore without him I don't think it would have happened.

If you feel Charlie was the driving force behind Cielo then I can understand your point.

black_love_in_space said...

Yeah dude, I was drunk. You're right on.

ziggyosterberg said...


Tex was a drug dealer before he met Charlie. He was likely dealing to Dennis Wilson. Tex lived at Dennis Wilson's house for free. A few of Charlie's girls also lived there, as well as Dean Moorehouse. According to Tex, Charlie never actually lived at Dennis' house when Tex lived there. Charlie mostly stayed at Spahn Ranch. I can think of a few reasons why Dennis would allow girls to live at his house and Dean Moorehouse was something of a spiritual advisor to Dennis (and Terry Melcher as well), but what did Tex have to offer other than drugs?

According to his book, Tex came up with the idea for the Bernard Crowe drug burn and set-up his ex-gf Luella (Rosina), who was held hostage by Crowe and friends after Tex fled the scene with Crowe's money. Tex's plan backfired when Crowe called the ranch threatening to kill everyone if he doesn't get his money back, which results in Charlie going to Crowe's apartment and shooting Crowe.

Tex claimed in his book to have instructed Linda Kasabian to steal some money from a guy that she had lived with, money which he had just inherited, weeks before the Hinman murder. Also, it should be noted, that the Crowe drug burn/shooting, likely set everything that followed into motion.

Tex has the starring role in the Tate/LaBianca murders.

Tex gives himself credit for putting a stop to the killings and saving lives, when a friend called the ranch the afternoon after he butchered the LaBiancas - Tex made up a lie that his friend called because the FBI had been to his parents home in Texas accusing him of murder. In other words, the killings stopped because Tex stopped killing people.

Unfortunately, Tex has a murder-relapse about 2 weeks later when he kills Shorty Shea, which he later admitted to Mary Brunner in September of 69. Not surprisingly, both of those details were left out of his book, likely because he was never charged with that crime.

With all of the able-bodied, "loyal to Charlie" men in that group, why didn't the killing spree continue? Perhaps it didn't continue, because the main ingredient was Tex. If Tex was taken out of the equation earlier, would you still have the Bernard Crowe drug burn, Gary Hinman, Tate/LaBianca & Shorty Shea (supposedly Tex's last kill)? Tex lead the family down a very dark road starting with Bernard Crowe and was an active participant in all the killings, with the exception of Hinman.

equinox12314 said...

@KevinMarx

Kevin,

I subscribe to the copycat motive and that is why I believe Charlie was the catalyst in order to save his own skin over Hinman and Crowe, rather than purely to get Beausoleil out of jail. If Charlie hadn't been on the scene at Hinman and Crowe, I doubt if he would have bothered in the least about BB being in custody.

I would like to believe that there was a drug burn involved because I do think they were multi motive crimes. However, there is the evidential problem. None of the participants at Cielo mentioned any drug involvement, and haven't done so at any subsequent parole hearing. If it were Tex and Linda who were burned, it would explain why she went along both nights.



Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

equinox - you nail the problem I have with the drug burn motive. People who are contemptuous and derisive about Helter Skelter being an invention of Bugliosi often propose instead a motive that has significantly less supporting evidence behind it.

Where is the evidence for the drugs burn? Evidence, as opposed to supposition and guesswork.

equinox12314 said...



@Michael,

It is particularly problematic when you look at Schreck's narrative about a drug burn at Cielo that night. For the quantity of drugs which he alleges Rostau delivered, where is the physical evidence? Where is the monetary evidence of the Family selling on those drugs? At that point, they seemed to be perpetually broke!! None of the participants' testimonies at any point mention them having stolen a quantity of drugs. Nor has it been raised at a Parole Hearing. I don't think it would harm their parole chances to mention it.

I don't want to dismiss a drug burn just for the sake of it, but if anyone could come up with some evidence. It is possible that in the past Tex had been dealing on a small scale to Melcher, but we are talking about a large scale deal here. Possibly, Linda and Tex had been burned recently and were happy to go along for revenge.


ziggyosterberg said...


equinox12314 said...

"It is possible that in the past Tex had been dealing on a small scale to Melcher,"


This is something that I've wondered about, because it seems a very real possibility and it also gives Tex an added incentive/his own motive for going to the Tate house and doing what he did. If, when Melcher rejected Charlie and wanted nothing more to do with the family, it also cut off Tex from some of his showbiz drug clients, then Tex would have something more to personally benefit from in "putting the fear into Melcher" than Charlie getting a recording contract.

I do think that there were multiple motives that came into play. The cynic in me leans to Melcher being the primary motive due to the location having significance to both Charlie and Tex as Melcher's former residence, and along with "Free a Brother", it's one of the only 2 motives that Charlie keeps bringing up and giving credence to when explaining Tate/LaBianca.

equinox12314 said...


@ziggyosterberg

Tex had been a drug dealer (albeit no a particularly successful one!!) for some time. That's the only reason Melcher would have had him hanging around, although it looks like Melcher was happy to have access to girls like Ruth Ann Moorhouse.

The problem is that Melcher was never truthful about the case because it would shed more light on the extent of his involvement with the Family.

Robert Hendrickson said...

You folks are having such an intelligent discussion, it's downright SCARY !

Someday that GREAT question may be answered: Why does GOD get ALL the credit when something good happens, while the Devil gets ALL the credit when something bad happens ? Like, what happened to "SHARE and SHARE alike."

P.S. It only gets better Michael, until you STOP thinking.

equinox12314 said...



Mr H,

Remember always, the Devil gets the best songs!!!

Kevin Marx said...

@equinox & Michael

Physical evidence for any of the motives is circumstantial at best, but i do agree that the drug burn motive is possibly the most light in terms of evidence. But for me all the other motives just seem too far fetched, however I have to admit that I haven't read George Stimson's book yet so I may change my mind (again) when I read that!

I believe that the reason why a drug burn hasn't been mentioned at parole hearings is that changing the official narrative would have been detrimental to their chances of parole. For what its worth Sadie did testify that Kasabian had been burned in Beverley Hills for $1000 of MDA - something which could have set the burn in motion.

If HS or the copycat motive was true, why did the killings stop? Surely those goals would have been furthered by more killings? As Ziggy points out Tex claims credit for "stopping" the killings - but if Charlie was the mastermind who easily got others to kill then surely he could have got someone else to continue with the killings to ignite HS or convince police that BB was the wrong man?

I think the crimes were sporadic events, not part of some grand scheme - hence drugs make the most sense to me.

equinox12314 said...


@Kevin Marx

Kevin,

As I have stated elsewhere on this thread, I go along with the copycat killings motive. I don't think Charlie was in the least bit interested in whether 'Brother Bobby' was in jail; it was to save Charlie's own skin. That was also the view of Susan Atkins in her book 'The Myth of Helter Skelter', and we obviously know that Sandy Good shares goes with the copycat killings.

I don't think Charlie instigated these crimes for Helter Skelter because I don't think he believed it himself. However, he had Pat, Leslie, Susan and some of the other young people at Spahn well and truly believing it. He was able to get their participation under the misapprehension they were doing this to instigate Helter Skelter. I know that Tex owed Charlie a favour, but I do wonder if Tex knew the real reason why he was there.

Thanks for the explanation regarding the Parole Hearings. It may be the reason none of the prospective parolees come out with much more detail. I wonder if the $1,000 of MDA was courtesy of Frykowski as he seemed to be the main dealer.

As to why the killings stopped, perhaps they were deemed to be sufficient. I imagine that after these murders came down that security must have increased. It was maybe a case of mission accomplished. I don't think any of the murders were random or haphazard. Hinman was a robbery gone wrong on someone whom they knew. They were acquainted with both Cielo and Waverley. Poor old Shorty was well known to them and perceived as a snitch, so he had to go.

If the Watson tapes contain details of other murders, and they don't involve Tex, then who was it? That would prove there was another psycho in the Family.

OO-EE-OO

equinox12314 said...


black_love_in_space said...

"Yeah dude, I was drunk. You're right on."

I am sure everyone here can relate to that!!!

Robert Hendrickson said...

The only problem I can see with the "drug burn" motive is ALL the "dealers" were ON drugs.

NOW, that's no way to run a "business." Must have ALL been Democrats.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

The motive is clear. Tex announced it in the living room at Cielo. Why are we even debating this?

equinox12314 said...


Michael,

Do you mean "I am the Devil, and I'm here to do the Devil's work" or something along those lines? He sounds like a pantomime villain to me:)

Why are we debating this? Because there's only so long you can discuss a door with writing on it:)

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

equinox - Only so long you can discuss a door with writing on it? LOL. And that, my friend, is why you will never be the next Irving Kanarek.

Pantomime villain, yes. It might sound that way. But then, try repeating those words to yourself while looking at the autopsy photos and imagining each movement Tex made to inflict those wounds.

The Devil's work. It sounds corny and kitsch. Unless he really means it.

grimtraveller said...

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

"Re catalysts - it's a bit of a chicken and egg thing isn't it? We all keep asking would they have killed if they had never met Manson"


That's always going to be a hard one because we can't know. Would soldiers that commit atrocities during war have done so had they not been in a war situation ? Would every cop that guns down what they see as a perp or suspect with no regard for that person's life have behaved in the same way if they worked in the bank or were collecting rubbish bins ?
Some people that did kill would've done so, some may not have in different circumstances. I've worked over 3 decades with many kids, some of whom went down the criminal path and some ended up killing {and some got killed}. Two of the guys that ended up killing {one later got killed himself, the other fled the country and is still wanted, nearly 14 years later} were two of the funniest guys I've ever known. I still laugh when I think of some of the stuff they used to come out with. I would never have mooted either as future murderers. One other guy, while I wouldn't have earmarked him as a future murderer, it didn't surprise me when he was done for murder.
Different things at different times weigh on each individual when it comes to murder.
I learned that much from Columbo !


Kevin Marx said...

"But for me all the other motives just seem too far fetched"


I think if one has gone out of one's way to study people, what they feel and think as well as a good hard look at the 60s, drugs, inadequacy and influence as well as the power of group think and different kinds of social interaction, then they may not be so far fetched.
Actually, I find history is full of events that retrospectively seem to have been far fetched but which, when put into context make abundant sense. The Third Reich seems far fetched when you put Germany up against most of the world. But it didn't seem that way to many Germans in 1939.......





Kevin Marx said...

"however I have to admit that I haven't read George Stimson's book"


You really should. It's a superbly written book. Full of sides and angles that will get you thinking. Like I said somewhere, it really needs to go alongside "Helter skelter" on the bookshelf of any one interested in the case. They're the Ying & yang of the TLB case. Or maybe the snip and snap.




Kevin Marx said...

"For what its worth Sadie did testify that Kasabian had been burned in Beverley Hills for $1000 of MDA - something which could have set the burn in motion"


I find the drug burn to be as far fetched as you're likely to find and in my opinion, is symptomatic of our modern penchant for trying to rewrite history rather than taking it as it came and commenting with our theories & opinions on it ~ a subtle difference.
When Susan Atkins "testified" about Linda being burned for $1000 of MDA, it's so obvious that she's lying. I thought that even back when I first read the book. And sure enough, when her head was straight again she is very clear that she was lying to absolve Charles Manson. She couldn't be clearer.
You might ask why I think it obvious that Sadie was lying. Well, because new motive upon new motive kept coming out and when one got nowhere, out trots another. I'm glad Susan Atkins clarified what was going on at the time of the penalty phase because it's uncomfortably embarrassing to read.
The thing I wonder is why they bothered because at that point they'd been convicted.

ziggyosterberg said...


@equinox12314

Good point about Melcher not being truthful. In his testimony at the Watson trial, Melcher says that he only saw Manson 3 times (1 time in summer of 68, 2 times in May of 69). The time in the summer of 68 was when Dennis & Manson dropped off Terry at Cielo. He says they only went past the gate to the parking area, dropped him off and left.

As far as Tex goes, Tex claimed that he first went to Cielo in August of 68 to pick up Melcher's car to drive Dean Moorehouse to Ukiah for a trial. The second time was in December of 68, when Gregg Jakobson had been arrested and Charlie told Tex to go there to ask Melcher to bail out Jakobson.

Melcher's testimony tells a different story. Both Tex and Melcher appear to be lying. (from CieloDrive.com) :

Q: Have you ever seen Mr. Watson inside your former residence at 10050 Cielo Drive?

A: Yes.

Q: Approximately how many times?

A: I can't be certain -- several. Watson was a friend of Wilson's and Jacobson's and was often tagging around with either or both of those men, so whenever they would drop by -- not "whenever," but often when they would drop by he would be with them.

Q: Can you give us an approximate number of times that you saw Mr. Watson inside your former residence at 10050 Cielo Drive?

A: I would say approximately six. It's a very rough, rough guess.

Q: Do you recall what part of your former residence Mr. Watson was in on any of these occasions?

A: He could have been in one room or he could have been in all the rooms; I really don't know. I wasn't keeping track.

Q: During what period of time was Mr. Watson at your residence? You said six times -- encompassing, let's say, what period?

A: I guess it would all be -- I'm sorry, let me retract that; All six times would have fallen somewhere in the summer of 1968.


http://www.cielodrive.com/terry-melcher-trial-testimony.php



Kevin Marx said...

Grimtraveller - imho and thats all it is:

Slaughtering 7 people a) because you want to ignite a race war b) because you're pissed off at not getting a recording contract or c) because you want to copy another crime will always seem more far fetched than because you want to make money from drugs.

I do take your point about the 60s and the times etc but first and foremost these people were petty criminals who liked to take drugs. This was their lifestyle everyday - they weren't revolutionaries like the Weathermen etc

in this case I think history does need to be rewritten because the official version is BS imho. I think that is the very essence of why people are so interested in this subject. If it had been correctly represented historically, would we all be here discussing it now?

Robert Hendrickson said...

OH YES, the Devil, but who's Devil was HE referring to?

My guess is: The one HIS mother raved and ranted about - so who was HE really stabbing?

ziggyosterberg said...


@Kevin Marx

One curious thing about the drug burn motive, that I don't think you have with the other motives, is that you can attach almost all the other motives to it as additional motives. It covers all the bases.

They go there for a "Drug Burn" and are also able to "Copycat/Free A Brother" "Helter Skelter" "Send A Message To Melcher" "Robbery" "Kill Polanski (if he's there)" and since it's drugs I would assume that means there's an "Organized Crime Connection".

Or maybe you can do that with all the motives?

I think my brain is starting to fry.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

Robert, now we're having fun, the way God intended. But the major problem is that neither Frykowski nor Parent (surname aside) is anyone's idea of a mother figure.

So my guess is he was enjoying the liberty and the license of being God and Devil in one person, of really putting people through some changes, because regardless of what society or mommy says about rules and ethics, that's the power God and the devil have.

Kevin Marx said...

Ziggy - you're totally right. I have often thought exactly that about the drug burn motive - and the next logical question would be did Tex go there with the intention to a) just commit a drug burn or was it to b) commit a drug burn AND kill everyone. If it was the latter then you could certainly attach any of the other motives as secondary motives before the fact.

ziggyosterberg said...


@Kevin Marx

The drug burn motive also fits the pattern of the previous 2, where they get (or attempt to get) money out of the victim and then kill (or attempt to kill) the victim. In the Tate case it could be money or drugs or both. I've always wondered if maybe the LaBianca murder is a red herring, designed to throw off the police after Tate, but even in that one Charlie sought money from the victims before they were killed and he took Rosemary's wallet with him.

Kevin Marx said...

@Ziggy - yes the La Biancas murder is much more murky and more complicated, especially when you also consider the elusive black book factor. Its easier to make a direct connection between killers and victims at Cielo than it is at Waverley - although according to Harold True, Charlie did stay at his house for about a week or ten days. There is also the Joe Dorgan link.

Robert Hendrickson said...

Hate to leave such a great discusion here so let's recap.

(1) Crowe and Shea were personal to Charlie (save the ranch)

(2) Leno LaBianca (if Black Book story true) personal to Charlie

(3) Hinman (Charlie active participant, but why)

AND of those 4 KILLINGS Charlie was also at the scene

(4) THUS we are left with the biggest ????? at the TATE house
and let's be honest. In American CULTure it's celebrities who get most of the attention.

So IF Charlie avoided the TATE scene, it most likely was NOT personal to HIM.

BUT "TEX" and Tate House - now that was PERSONAL or we can through out ALL the standard "crime-scene" textbooks.

AND therein was Bugliosi's greatest challenge - to make the TATE house "personal" to Charlie, IF he was to GET Manson (as the LEADER)

ME thinks Alvaraz just "maybe" may have some answers. Bad boys are known to tell their "mistresses" things they would NEVER tell even their wives.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

Robert.

Real food for thought in that summary. Real food for thought...

I think I have indigestion.

ziggyosterberg said...


@Kevin Marx

And Harold True also said (in his interview with Stovitz) that Charlie asked if he could live with them and Harold said it was up to the other guys, so Charlie asked them and they said no.

The Joe Dorgan thing is kind of funny, because that, combined with Kitty Lutesingers info on Hinman, is what got Charlie's name put on a list of suspects in the Second LaBianca Homicide Report. And if the Joe Dorgan/Suzan Struthers-LaBerge/Straight Satans connection was just coincidence, then what shit luck it was picking that house!

The black book thing is another curiosity/oddity. I think it might be a metaphor or something that Charlie just threw out there to get people thinking that he was mobbed up, but you never know.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

So Robert - you don't buy Altobelli's story of Manson's prior visit to Cielo, where Altobelli and/or Hatami made it abundantly clear that they wanted him off the premises?

The only thing I find unbelievable about Altobelli's story is that the woman who married miniature human weasel Roman Polanski would've described Christ-like Manson as "that funny-looking man".

Robert Hendrickson said...

That Hatami, Manson, Sharon, Melcher, Atrobelli Tate HOUSE incident(s) actually demonstrates how Bugliosi "created" Helter Skelter and certain sub-motives so the mentally disadvantaged would have something to talk about while they stood in line at the city park fountain - for a drink of water.

equinox12314 said...


@Robert Hendrickson

Said: "ME thinks Alvaraz just "maybe" may have some answers. Bad boys are known to tell their "mistresses" things they would NEVER tell even their wives."

Mr H,

That's exactly what I have been thinking. Alvarez and Bugliosi got together not too many years after the trial, therefore there's a good chance she would ask him about the case. It's debatable whether a publishing house will take her on - I suppose it depends on how many juicy tales she can come up with. She obviously waited until he passed away to avoid being sued, so it might contain some TLB related material.

grimtraveller said...

Robert Hendrickson said...

"That Hatami, Manson, Sharon, Melcher, Atrobelli Tate HOUSE incident(s) actually demonstrates how Bugliosi "created" Helter Skelter and certain sub-motives so the mentally disadvantaged would have something to talk about while they stood in line at the city park fountain - for a drink of water"


Blimey, Bob ! That's a bit harsh !!
There again, I suppose I could be classed as mentally disadvantaged in relation to jungle or Arctic survival.
But seriously folks {I was jesting}!
If you check out police interviews and early defence lawyer interviews involving Virginia Graham, Ronnie Howard, Brooks Poston, Danny DeCarlo and Leslie Van Houten, to name some, some of which appeared before Bugliosi was even assigned to the case and some that he never got to hear, it's interesting to note that Helter skelter kept cropping up again and again ~ and this is all from 1969.
Only a fool would have ignored it. Only a deaf person could have. Even if it turned out to be a load of horseshit, it at least had to be investigated, same way the drug angle was because of the amount of drug related stuff that initially turned up.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

grimtraveller, you're applying logic and commonsense. Usually those are admirable qualities. But...

You do know we're debating motive in the TLB murders, right? ;p

(enjoying your contributions very much, by the way).

grimtraveller said...

Kevin Marx said...


"Slaughtering 7 people a) because you want to ignite a race war b) because you're pissed off at not getting a recording contract or c) because you want to copy another crime will always seem more far fetched than because you want to make money from drugs"


And yet no evidence appeared to support it.


"I do take your point about the 60s and the times etc but first and foremost these people were petty criminals who liked to take drugs. This was their lifestyle everyday"


Which is precisely why a lot of our logic won't apply. When you put those two unstable elements together, anything is possible !
As you say, they had among their number petty rather than hardened criminals. And pretty tame ones at that.
Until Crowe & Hinman. Then the edge hardened.

grimtraveller said...

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

"grimtraveller, you're applying logic and commonsense. Usually those are admirable qualities. But...

You do know we're debating motive in the TLB murders, right?"


Well, yeah. But the logical bit is ascribed to the prosecution !
The bit about helter skelter continually showing up shows consistency......

Kevin Marx said...

@grimtraveller - there's not much physical evidence to strongly support any of the motives. The blood writing can of course be used to support some of the other motives aside from the drug burn motive but in terms of physical evidence its still not much.

The physical evidence to support a drug burn would have been long consumed/spent by the time of the arrests at Barker. And as I said earlier I accept that its light in terms of evidence - that's still not swaying me towards another motive - at the moment anyway, who knows what I'll think tomorrow! :)

I agree that we have to be careful when trying to apply logic - we're looking at this with the benefit of hindsight, clear minds (relatively in some cases lol) etc and are not caught in the maelstrom that the people involved found themselves in. As Harold True said 'you can't scribe reason to crazy people'.

D. LaCalandra said...

All this talk of race war in the news these days. Geraldo even mentioned everyone's favorite boogyman, Charles Manson. Michael Savage, or should I said Wiener did too. Yet nobody mentions the ZEBRA MURDERS or Colin Furguson.

I skipped through that book on the Zebra Murders after reading "Death to Pigs". I wanted to see if any of those guys were locked up with Charlie. Within the first chapter, one of them was in McNeil probably at the same time. Makes you wonder if he might have heard something, what did he say about black muslims and things going on in the sewers? Maybe Helter Skelter wasn't the vision of a demonic hippie guru but any actually plan he heard about and knew was coming.....and which eventually did with the Zebra Murders. Maybe those two Scientologist kids were the first.

This is not to say I think he really believed in that Helter Skelter shit or that it was the motive. If anything, it was a half-baked, metaphorical fantasy and slang word for what was happening in that particular time and space and it's questionable how much of it was his idea and not a collective group thing.

One thing to point out though. All accounts of Helter Skelter from people like Brooks Poston mentioned NOTHING about Manson igniting it or committing random killings. It involved no mention of blacks killing in areas like Beverly Hills (which a lot of them changed their story too). But when they took the stand, some went as far as saying Manson talked of writing "pig" in blood on the walls.That differs from something witchy and we know what those girls wrote was their own idea.

Michael Hloušek-Nagle said...

When you buy a jigsaw puzzle from a thrift store, and there are pieces from four different puzzles, none of them complete, plus a couple of random Lego blocks.

That's what we have. We'll never finish this. We may as well invent what we want. Which is why I'm sticking to the satanic truth.

Fun.

(PS - is it true that in the USA you call Lego 'Legos'?)

Robert Hendrickson said...

Welcome D. LaCalandra: Both "Death to Pigs" and "Zebra Murders"

That's kind'a like a Special treat for Sundays ( vanilla ice cream with strawberries and lots of goodies mixed in.)

TOO rich for some, BUT you get what you pay for.

George Stimson said...

Okay, this is what really happened: Roman Polanski was not looking forward to family life with a woman who he increasingly came to believe would end up looking like Doris Tate so he arranged for Tex Watson (whom he had met through mutual dealings with Terry Melcher) to kill Sharon and the others and then commit a copycat crime (LaBianca) to make the Cielo murders look like part of an insane pattern (Hollywood script mentality working there). It had nothing to do with Crowe or Hinman. CM was pretty much a hapless bystander who had no involvement with any of it.
(And Bill Nelson was the Zodiac Killer.)

D. LaCalandra said...

Some good theories I've heard recently is that it was a revenge hit by the Satanic elite on Roman for "revealing too much" with Rosemary's Baby. I guess they didn't want anyone to know elderly jews can impregnate woman through magic and that Satan looks like a guy in a rubber costume.

Even better is the one I heard about all the kids surrounding him were being mind controlled by the CIA who were apparently using rock music, fake satanic cults and LSD to achieve this goal and Manson was dragged into what they did and took the fall for it all. That's actually a different take on the actually theory, which is he was working for the CIA and used mind controlled. But the person I know just wants to absolve Charlie of any wrong doing whatsoever, even if it means resorting to theories that are equally if not more absurd than what Bugliosi presented.

Nelson being the Zodiac is believable, actually.

beauders said...

It has never been proven that Dorgan was even a biker let alone a Straight Satan.

equinox12314 said...


@George Stimson

"...Roman Polanski was not looking forward to family life with a woman who he increasingly came to believe would end up looking like Doris Tate..."

LMAO. Cruel, but very funny!!

TomG said...

Welp,

For me, we all did crazy things when we were 23. Or around that age. It may be easier now to moralize when you or 60 goddamned something, now that you are old and out of the game, and nobody really gives a rat's ass what your pre-senile mind thinks anyways...

I'll say one last thang, and I won't bother with arguments on 2015 blogs after this.....when you were young and had a head full of alcohol and drugs, would you want some sober, birn again, sold out hippie on his Walmart laptop passing judgement on you 40 years later?

Birds make mistakes in life. All of life is redeemable, with apologies to my low testosterone Presbytieran friends who got it right the first try.

grimtraveller said...

Kevin Marx said...

"@grimtraveller - there's not much physical evidence to strongly support any of the motives"


I agree. Possibly that's why the prosecution doesn't have to prove motive. The actual physical evidence can only prove {in some cases} that someone was there, not whatever reason they had for being there.


As a complete sidetrack, an interesting line from William Zamora's book "Trial by your peers" crops up when Linda Kasabian is on the stand and being questioned about helter skelter. He was one of the jurors on the case and he records "Linda said she saw 'Helter Skelter' written on a jug in the parachute room and on some door, but she couldn't remember where." The book was published a good year before Helter Skelter and much was taken from notes he made during the trial.
Just one of those little things that stand out only because it's been a hot topic here recently but which would otherwise have passed under the radar.