Monday, October 23, 2017

The long awaited Dianne Lake book "Member of the Family"



The media has ramped up it's game on this book with television appearances, magazine articles and plenty of website hits.  We are all looking for answers to the unresolved questions about the murders and the Family.

Kirkus Review  did a piece on the book a few weeks ago and the book did not rate very high with them.  The most damaging things they had to say were,  she turns in a memoir that is courageous in spirit but long on self-justification and though firsthand, a minor addition to the literature surrounding the Manson cult.

Not knowing how well Kirkus Review knows the subject it's hard to say if this is a definitive review, just be warned that Dianne's book may not meet your expectations.  The book is not due to be released until the 24th and I have not read it, yet.

Dianne will appear on Good Morning America and on Nightline on the 24th according to HarperCollins, her publisher.  Both shows are on ABC.

Then on the 25th Dianne will appear on DR.PHIL.  This hour long show promises to be a more intimate look at Dianne and a way to get a feel for her personality, believability and sincerity.  We will update this post with a direct link to the broadcast once it is uploaded at their website.

Please check your local listings for time and channel if you want to watch in real time or record the show.


HERE'S A LINK TO DIANNE'S INTERVIEW WITH DR. PHIL.  It is posted in six different videos.






The first PEOPLE article to hit the 'net.

Manson Family’s Youngest Member Shares How She Was Seduced by a Madman at Age 14 — Then Helped Send Him to Prison

by Elaine Aradillas

Though it’s been more than 50 years since Dianne Lake was a teenager in the Los Angeles area, deep into the counterculture of the 1960s, there’s one memory that stands out to her more than the others: the first time she met Charles Manson.

“He was extremely intelligent,” Lake, now 64 and living outside of L.A., tells PEOPLE. “He had the incredible ability to pick up on other people’s weaknesses and their needs and their desires, and he could fulfill those.”

It’s a skill Manson turned to deadly ends, as Lake would learn.

For the first time in 47 years, she is breaking her silence about living with him and being the youngest member of his cult, the so-called “Manson family.”

In Member of the Family, a new book out Oct. 24 and exclusively excerpted in PEOPLE, Lake details her experiences falling under Manson’s spell — and, eventually, how she was free of him.
 In 1967, at the age of 14, Lake navigated through communes and love-ins after her parents, a homemaker mom and former-Marine-turned-artist, “dropped out” of society and gave her a note granting their permission to live on her own.

A few months later, she met up with Manson at a party in Topanga, California.
“I needed love and affection, and I needed a family. I needed to feel like I belonged somewhere,” Lake says. “And he perceived that from the get-go.”

For two years, Lake found herself increasingly loyal to Manson, even as he grew more paranoid and violent leading up to the days in 1969 that would terrorize the country.

Beginning on Aug. 9, 1969, over the course of a two-day murder spree (which Lake did not take part in), Manson and members of his cult killed seven people: Abigail Folger, Wojciech Frykowski, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, Steven Parent, Jay Sebring and Sharon Tate.

A year later, at age 17 and after being institutionalized, Lake found herself in front of Manson once again — this time in an L.A. courtroom, testifying against him and others of his “girls,” including Susan Atkins and Leslie Van Houten.

“He just looked crazy, but I was able to look at him,” Lake says. “I had been pretty deprogrammed at this point, so I felt pretty safe.”

 But many of the women, whom she had considered friends while they lived together, were still supportive of Manson throughout the trial.

“The girls with the Xs on their foreheads? That part always blew me away,” Lake says. “They continued to hang on, be groupies.”

Once the trial was over and first-degree murder convictions were returned against Manson, Lake tried to move forward with her life — marrying, raising three children and earning a master’s degree in education.

After 47 years, she finally felt ready to speak out.
“It’s an interesting story, but it’s also a cautionary tale,” she says. “I hope that my story sheds a little light onto this very dark time.”

A second PEOPLE article which includes a video not posted here.

Inside the Moment the Manson Family's Youngest Member Learned the Cult Was Slaughtering People: 'I Was Horrified'

by Elaine Aradillas


While the country was still reeling from the news of a two-day murder spree across Los Angeles that left seven people dead, a then-16-year-old girl named Dianne Lake was learning first-hand details about the 1969 slayings that would change her life forever.


“I was shocked. I was horrified,” recalls Lake, now 64, about the night she listened to Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkel and Leslie Van Houten discuss how they committed murder for their cult leader, Charles Manson.

 Lake was not a participant in the violence. For the first time in 47 years, she is breaking her silence about growing up in the 1960s counterculture and how she wound up as the youngest person living with Manson and his so-called “family.”

In Member of the Family, a new book out Oct. 24 and exclusively excerpted in this week’s issue of PEOPLE, Lake details her experiences as a young teenager falling under Manson’s spell — and, eventually, how she was free of him.

It would take months after the slayings before police connected Manson and his followers to the gruesome murders of Abigail Folger, Wojciech Frykowski, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, Steven Parent, Jay Sebring and Sharon Tate.

At Barker Ranch, a couple of hours outside of L.A. where the group was laying low, Lake could sense a change in the group’s mood.

“You have the [Beatles’] White Album, throw in a little acid and drugs and a little Scientology and the Bible and stir it all up with a madman being the dance master,” she says. “It just went crazy. It escalated into horrible chaos, and I’m so glad I was not a part of it.”

A year later, at age 17 and after being institutionalized, Lake found herself in front of Manson — this time in an L.A. courtroom, testifying against him and some of his “girls.”

“He just looked crazy, but I was able to look at him,” Lake says. “I had been pretty deprogrammed at this point, so I felt pretty safe.”

Once the trial was over and first-degree murder convictions were returned against Manson, Lake tried to move forward with her life — marrying, raising three children and earning a master’s degree in education.

Now she is sharing her story.

“I think the biggest burden was keeping it a secret,” Lake says. “I survived and prevailed during this dark time.”



111 comments:

AustinAnn74 said...

Wow, Dianne looks great! I read the article in People a couple of days ago while at the store too. I also ordered the book. Even if it doesn't have anything relatively new in it, I still want it for my collection.

Panamint Patty said...

She's lost a lot of weight. Patty could afford to do the same lol

Fiddy 8 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dani_P said...

I pre ordered the book on my Kindle and I woke up this morning so excited thinking today was the day just to realize it's tomorrow! I'm curious to see if her memories will coincide with some of the things Little Paul wrote about happening in his book (and not just their little 'thing' they seemed to have).

On a side note, I was reading through the blog at work and came across a Shorty thread where the address of the house he grew up in was posted. I live about 5-10 minutes from there so I think I'm going to take a little detour on my way home from work tomorrow and see if I can find it.

Fiddy 8 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fiddy 8 said...

Let me try posting this again coherently. (I hope Nellie isn't haunting me for Halloween)
--------------------------------------------

Thanks for putting this article up.

Speaking of mass media coverage - did you guys see the Oprah hosted segment on 60 minutes last night? It was about Pelican Bay State Prison in (very) northern California. I was fully expecting the ubiquitous mass media nod to anything Charles Manson, but no reference at all was made CM, or any other famous alumni.

Anyways, I was sure thinking about his incarceration time in the Special Housing Unit - the SHU.

The main thrust of Oprah's segment was her interview with the state commissioner admitting that after the severe criticism his office received for inflicting months of solitary on confinement on prisoners had beenaccepted, and that a mistake was made (used now only for very specific offenses and shorter times) Maybe it was fancy editing, but Oprah got the current head of prisons in state to nod that it might considered a form of torture.

ColScott said...

Dianne has only come forward because she was outed on the internet on the blogs and of course, cash grab.

Dianne was a heavy supporter of Bill MOLESTO Nelson so really, any opinions she has to offer FIFTY FUCKING TEARS from events are worth less than anything Grim has to say.

ColScott said...

* years OBVS

christopher butche said...

I'm hoping but not expecting her to explain in more depth the onion sphere of family women as put forward by van House at her most recent hearing. Obviously Manson at the centre. Closest next the originals Brunner, Fromme and Krenwinkle. Van House placed herself in the third shell. The second was comprised of the young loves Pitman, Moorehouse and Lake. So apparently the youths representing an ideal womanhood were close to the centre. I will be surprised if she comments on this.

David said...

It somewhat pains me to say this but I’m with the Col. on this one. If someone in the family has nothing to add per the review she’s not going to tell anything but what Prople magazine wants or her candy coated version of events. Capitalizing on a name ‘Manson’ in an ironic twist on what keeps LVH in prison. IMO.

grimtraveller said...

I don't really have any expectations. I'm interested in the book because it's her and I'm curious about what she might say but I learned an interesting lesson some years ago about putting my expectations on something that has already been written. I was really looking forward to John Wetton's biography as it was an authorized one. He was a songwriting bassist/vocalist that had played in some bands whose music I really like {Mogul Thrash, Family, King Crimson, Larry Norman, UK, Wishbone Ash etc} and had grown up on the south coast as part of a scene that produced the likes of Andy Summers, Robert Fripp, Greg Lake, Zoot Money, Michael Giles and others that did quite a lot in nascent progressive rock of the late 60s and early 70s and I thought he'd bring together all of those elements and I was curious to get his take on playing on Larry Norman's "Only visiting this planet" which was a seminal piece of Christian rock at a time when such attempts were shunned by both the church and the rock world.....and the book was crap ! It's not his fault. It's just that I felt with his pedigree he must have so much stuff to say that I wanted to hear about and it wasn't the case at all. In the end I couldn't wait to finish it. He said so little about how he felt about the people he'd worked with, the songs he'd written, the albums he helped to steer, his bass playing and his singing that he may as well have said nothing.
Since that time, I've found that I just read a person's book and then at that point it'll come alive if it's going to.
I ordered the book months ago and it was due in the next week but I got a message saying it's been put back to towards the end of November and I didn't even care.

ColScott said...

of course, cash grab

Would you feel happier if I bought you a copy for christmas ? 😀

grimtraveller said...

ColScott said...

any opinions she has to offer FIFTY FUCKING YEARS from events are worth less than anything Grim has to say

Why Scotty, I'm almost....honoured.

Toby King said...

I wonder if she talks about biting the umbilical cord when mary had her baby

Robert C said...

Well finally another Mansonite writes up their paperback edition of memoirs and I really have no illusions about any case concluding revelations but I do hope there will be something interesting. Hopefully it will encourage other Family members to leave us some sweet nothings prior to their departures although I can't think of any motive for them to do so other than the income angle. In fact it could still be dangerous for many to do so and actually tell the truth. But I'll cut DL some slack and wait to see what she and her ghost writer wrote before judgment.

St Circumstance said...

I feel sorry for Diane. Her and Ruth. They were the only two who get a pass from me for being so young and having such poor role models for parents.

It's one thing to abandon a 14 year old kid. But to encourage them to run around on their own with 33 year old criminals should be criminal in my opinion. Her parents letting their 14 year old girl take off with a grown ex-con should be a crime....

However I too am in the camp that this book will be useless as far as information. I listened to a little of the GMA segment. Same old song and dance.

I am glad she seems to have wound up with an ok life. She is one of a very few of that group who I hope life dealt a few breaks.

lostgirl said...

I wish Krenwinkle would accept that she is never getting out, write a book and just spill it all. She isn't getting any younger, memories fade, and 50 years is a long time.

Dani_P said...

I've been reading all morning and 30% into the book I just got to when she met Charlie. My heart is broken for her and the childhood she lived through from sexual abuse to abandonment. Then to read the visual of Charlie, a 35 year old man, leading a 14 year old girl hours after he met her to a bus to have sex just makes my skin crawl. I just simply can't imagine and the fact that no one seemed to think much of this is just mind boggling.

DebS said...

Here is a link to Dianne's interview with Good Morning America from this morning. It's about 5 minutes long.

http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/youngest-member-manson-family-charles-manson-made-feel-50671713?cid=share_facebook_widget

Panamint Patty said...

Patty and Stoner just picked one up at Barnes & Noble. The $30 price tag is a bit steep!

Cielodrive.com said...

Creepy grandpa

Matt said...

She looks like she spent years in the sun...


AstroCreep said...

Charlie was a predator, plain and simple. People seem to think that he was some charismatic hippie guru genius. In actuality, he was a sodomizing, drug pushing, child sex predator who was twice some of the girls age and was able to easily lure them. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to piece together that a 17 year old kid living on the streets likely has family issues, feelings of isolation, and longs to be accepted within a group. Anyone want their teenaged daughters hanging with that type of low life piece of human excrement?

I’m sure I’ll read the book and learn something new by reading it- however, agreed that 48 years later it’s for financial gain. She’s had 48 years to get her story out to help kids not fall into the same trap.

Peter said...

It's funny because "cute, impish, and fun" is exactly how I would describe Manson.

DebS said...

The pre order price at Amazon was $18 but I just checked and it hasn't shipped yet. Just because you pre order doesn't mean you will get it on the day of release apparently.

Panamint Patty said...

Yes Patty just got to that part. Sad.

ColScott said...

Deb

Yes it does I just got mine.

Astro- Charlie was a con man who wanted to survive. He was a horrible human being AND horribly damamged

Matt- why hate when you can love?

ColScott said...

George exposed Molesto those many years ago- he was even trying to give massages like Harvey Weibstein, https://web.archive.org/web/20001211203600/http://www.mansonmurders.com:80/defendingmyself.html

Fiddy 8 said...

Thanks George.

CrisPOA said...

I am reading the Kindle version.
I am at the beginning - the 1st chapter... and i'm already felling bad for her, because of that crazy father of hers...

CrisPOA said...

*feeling

DebS said...

I updated the post with a link to Dianne's interview with Dr. Phil. It's in the middle of the post above Dianne's picture.

Matt said...

Finally got through the videos. Dr. Phil's techies want to make sure you get lost and see as many ads as possible.

What she said about her husband passing on as being a catalyst for deciding the time was now rings true to me. I think he was very protective of her.


starship said...

So, anybody get a look at those chairs on the Dr. Phil set? I was distracted the whole time.

Matt said...

Yeah. High chairs for adults.


Peter said...


She said in the interview that she had an "epiphany." For whatever that's worth.

Jennifer Hays said...

Those videos were rough. I agree, Matt, I can see where Dianne's husband's passing must have really helped her decide to finally tell her story. I think that happens a lot when people are victimized early in life.

I'm curious about why she was in San Francisco when she met Charlie and the girls. Was she there by herself? I don't know where the Hog Farm was in relation to SF, but she seemed to have been apart from her parents at the point she met CM and I wonder why/how. Was she alone in SF at 14 years old in 1967? That sounds scary.

Dani_P said...

I finished the book. It was a lot more detailed than I thought it would be and was much like Little Paul's. One part that stuck out was imagining being her, alone and camping in a random spot with TeX days after the murder and finding out he not only committed them, but all the gory details from the killer himself... It's also striking how everyone it seems who met TeX back then talks about how 'gentle and sweet' he was and it's crazy trying to connect the two images into one person.

CrisPOA said...

Thank you for the links guys.
Where i am now in the book... it just got worse with the grandpa. Poor Dianne, and i even didn't get to the part she meets Manson

DebS said...

The Hog Farm had its beginnings as a collective in North Hollywood in the mid 60s. They were a travelling commune not long after, picking up and moving as the mood struck them. They travelled in a convoy of converted school buses. In August 1969 they were recruited by the promoter for Woodstock to flesh out some semblance of a large campground with fire pits and trails on the land where Woodstock was held.

It's possible that the Hog Farm was in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1967 and that is why Dianne was able to meet up with Manson and the girls.

The Hog Farm was started by Hugh Romney and his wife Bonnie Jean. In 1970 Hugh Romney changed his name to Wavy Gravy. They were politically as well as musically active.

David said...

I'll chime in here. I'm 70% though the book. I haven't listened to the interviews but...

She clearly states she met Manson the first time at the Spiral Staircase. She had lived there with her family and another couple and their kid previously and went back after her San Fran excursion. She claims her family gave Manson or showed him her picture and asked if he could keep a look out for her. She claims Squeaky claimed they drove to SF to look for her. She was greeted by strangers (the Family) with shouts of "Diane is here!" when she showed up at the Spiral Staircase, which blew her away.

I am finding a number of inconsistencies with other sources examples:

She has Manson giving the bullet to Wilson in the summer of 1968. She does say it was a rumor.

She has Brian Wilson and 'producers' and 'musicians' at the Wilson recording session. She also says she heard Manson pulled a knife on them- she didn't see it.

She has Manson first meet Wilson at Spahn- no foot kissing.

She has Sandy joining the Family near the end of their stay at Wilson's house. I thought she joined in March-April 1968.

David said...

Oh and she says the Hog Farm was outside LA at the time. She was essentially told to leave by Wavy Gravy because she was under age and he was afraid of her having sex with older men (which doesn't appear to have stopped anyone else including Harold True) and views that as when her parents abandoned her.

brownrice said...

Interesting discrepencies, David. Thanks for sharing. I pre-ordered my copy months ago but according to my Amazon "orders" page, it still hasn't even shipped... so it goes.

Jennifer Hays said...

Okay, thank you. I was under the impression that The Hog Farm was an actual...farm, i.e., a set location. I didn't know they moved around. My only experience of Wavy Gravy is of seeing him in the film of Woodstock. My dad was at Woodstock himself and I grew up listening to the album and watching the movie, so I remember him from that but had no other knowledge other than that Dianne and her family had been with him at some point.

Panamint Patty said...

Yes the LA hog farm is in the hills above Tujunga. Maybe we will visit on the next tour? Stacey knows how to get there.

Nonymous said...

I’ve been sick and had lots of time to read so I finished the book. I would have liked to have read about how she coped and healed in the years afterward, especially in 1970s when there were movies and books released and it was still fresh in everyone’s memory. The story ends abruptly after she testifies and then picks up in the present day just at the very end to explain why she wrote the book now and how she explained her past to her children. It’s amazing that she turned out the way she did. Life was stacked against her in every way but somehow she ended up ok.

DebS said...

Wavy Gravy also has the Black Oak Ranch in Laytonville, Mendocino County. They have land in New Mexico, too. Here is his FB page https://www.facebook.com/wavyg1

Jennifer Hays said...

Do you know where in New Mexico? I live there myself, so I'm just curious.

David said...

brownrice said: "Interesting discrepencies"

There are more but in the interest of 'spoilers' I stopped with those.

She also uses a lot of 'dialogue' between her and Manson et al and while it makes the book more interesting when I stepped away I thought 'wait a minute, I can't remember a conversation I had with my friends forty years ago when I was stoned word for word, how can she remember what Manson said, word for word, while stoned on acid after 50 years?'

I somehow lost your e-mail- computer issues- can you send me a 'test'? I have a musical question and want that link again.

Thanks

David said...

Ok, I can't resist:

"ON AUGUST 5, CHARLIE FOUND OUT BOBBY BEAUSOLEIL WAS PICKED up for something that had to do with a stolen car and put in jail."

Lake, Dianne. Member of the Family: My Story of Charles Manson, Life Inside His Cult, and the Darkness That Ended the Sixties (Kindle Locations 4872-4874). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

By the way he's at Spahn when he learns this.

DebS said...

Jennifer, Llano New Mexico. If you go to Wavy's FB page, link above, he says he's heading to Santa Fe in a recent post.

starviego said...

David said...
"ON AUGUST 5, CHARLIE FOUND OUT BOBBY BEAUSOLEIL WAS PICKED up for something that had to do with a stolen car and put in jail."

Wasn't BB arrested on Aug 6, as per the official version?

grimtraveller said...

Dani_P said...

It's also striking how everyone it seems who met TeX back then talks about how 'gentle and sweet' he was and it's crazy trying to connect the two images into one person

Two of the three funniest kids I ever worked with ended up committing murder. Both guys were really fantastic and even thinking about them has me breaking out in a huge smile if not laughter itself. We had some great times and some of the most hilarious things I ever heard in my life came from them. One of them in particular had a group of us in fits of laughter for 4 days as we had to camp in this crummy, damp cottage. There were a lot of elements that made that trip but without his input, it just wouldn't have been the same. And they were both deep and highly intelligent and could be really thoughtful and kind. One of them was a football trainer for younger aimless kids. Ultimately though, they wanted to "stick it to White society" and being seen as 'bad' meant more to them than positively productive. Donald Duck was always far more attractive than Micky Mouse.
During her trial, Paul Fitzgerald asked if Pat should be judged on those 3 hours the murders took out of all the hours she had lived up to that point. In terms of her guilt, yes, but in reality, one set of actions don't define a person. There's more to the complex human being than any one set of evil actions so I'm not at all surprised that people commenting on Tex tended to say how nice or polite or quiet he was or had brains or whatever. All of those things can mask or deflect from something else that's not regularly shown.

DebS said...

David, I was thinking I could not accurately remember a sequence of events from nearly 50 years ago so if she was off on a few details, like when Sandy joined the Family, it wouldn't trouble me that much. But if Dianne is quoting Charlie dialogue from that long ago I'd have to call BS!

Since Bobby wasn't arrested until the 6th of August, maybe Charlie really did have "powers"!! The kindest thing I can say about that is Dianne apparently didn't read any books or the internet before writing her book. Strange that her publisher, HarperCollins, didn't do a fact check.

David said...

Starviego: yup

grimtraveller said...

David said...

She also uses a lot of 'dialogue' between her and Manson et al and while it makes the book more interesting when I stepped away I thought 'wait a minute, I can't remember a conversation I had with my friends forty years ago when I was stoned word for word, how can she remember what Manson said, word for word, while stoned on acid after 50 years?'

I've been thinking this for a number of years now. I can't remember a single conversation verbatim that I've ever had. I can remember the gist of some of them and bits and pieces and a while back, I concluded that what we get in reportage of conversation, even purported verbatim ones, is just the gist and a general flavour of the conversation. In books it's often a literary device, spun in such a way to make good reading but not in such a way as to be a lie although sometimes it may be an exaggeration.
With some members of the Family, it would be easier to recall some things because they heard them often, for example, Brooks Poston recalling HS. Other people like Gregg Jacobson would remember things talked about with Charlie because they talked so much. And some people do have better memories than others and sometimes, some people simply weren't listening or were far more into the way the universe was dissolving before them on a trip or in the aftermath of one than a secretarial focus on what was being said.
I think recalling events can be a bit like that. I often marvel at how young children talk all the way through a film and sometimes don't appear to be paying attention but if you ask them about the movie, they can tell you so much about it and even what was said and days or weeks later too.

Nonymous said...

At the beginning of the book there is a disclaimer about the dialogue, and some names being changed. The book would have been better as a historical document if it hadn’t been written almost 50 years later. No she doesn’t study this as history. She spent most of her life trying to forget all this. She wrote things like The Ramrodder being shot at Spahn Ranch when it was really shot over at Iverson etc. There are plenty of discrepancies but it’s all pretty interesting. I enjoy the first person account books the most. My favorites are Paul’s and Onjya’s.

David said...

Deb,

I agree with you but it’s not hard to ‘fact check’ much of this.

While I found her story ‘compelling’ generally I also came away thinking ‘money grab’. Like the B.B. mistake many are verifiable with Wikipedia. So for me IMO it took something away from what she may have been trying to say.

Mr. Humphrat said...

You can look up dialogue in non-fiction and find lots of people talking about creating dialogue in non-fiction to represent the facts even though it's not going to be word-for-word accurate. I guess writers are encouraged to do this to make the story draw the reader in.

grimtraveller said...

DebS said...

if she was off on a few details, like when Sandy joined the Family, it wouldn't trouble me that much......Dianne apparently didn't read any books or the internet before writing her book. Strange that her publisher, HarperCollins, didn't do a fact check

I have found myself thinking the latter sometimes when I've read Family interviews or parole hearing transcripts. But it suddenly occurred to me that someone in Dianne's position is utterly different from us. We've more or less all been students of the case for quite a while and dates, times and places have a meaning to us that they probably wouldn't have to those that lived it. I guess someone like Dianne has a different focus from us and the minutiae that we live and breathe wouldn't be all that relevant, if at all, to her. Whereas we'd possibly call each other out if we got a date out by a day or two, or mentioned the wrong car used to transport the killers, I guess for her, it's the happening that matters not the date {although 1968 as opposed to '69 is an eye raiser !}.
I'm torn between the light and dark here because I like accuracy and get really irritated by people that I think should have their details right and don't.
In some of the early Police/lawyer interviews from '69/70, one can see that quite often, people didn't have a clue about specific dates. Springer, DeCarlo, Howard, Graham, Crowe, Shwartz etc. And even Dianne herself, in that interview that Cielo put up recently on his site, is very sketchy on dates.
I think it's different for those that have been in the position to check facts when they get them wrong or get lazy with them or try to lie using them. Dare I say it, there may be a number of people that would have a better and clearer all round view of the overall case than Dianne but the overall case isn't really going to be her focus otherwise there'd be little point in the book. The fans want the inside details not the staid facts !

grimtraveller said...

David said...

but in the interest of 'spoilers' I stopped with those....Ok, I can't resist

You must ! Resist ! Resist ! 😀

David said...

Nonymous, Grim,

I hear you both. However, she is going on TV saying 'this is what happened, read my book'. History matters. Accuracy matters.

Are we not seeking the truth?

Either don't make the statements, hire a fact checker, do a google search or say in bold letters, and at every interview 'I'm not sure my memory is accurate, I could be wrong' the problem.....that doesn't sell books.

She also latches on to tin hat theories and suggests Manson may have been selling dope to Hollywood stars.

Oh, and she has Crowe coming to the ranch but it was oddly unclear whether that was before or after he was shot. He is, however, a drug dealer.

I'm sorry, people read this and believe it. Next thing we know someone will quote her as proof of the drug burn theory.

David said...

I said 'shot'. I meant she seems to say Crowe came to the ranch after Tex ripped him off and does say she saw him.

David said...

crap: ripped him off and before he was shot- sorry

David said...

If you(the jury) find a witness to be false as t part of their testimony....,,

grimtraveller said...

David said...

If you(the jury) find a witness to be false as t part of their testimony....

Totally agree. It is a lot easier in retrospect to give Dianne a little slack though. Especially in this case where absence of time measuring devices is such a feature. I think often when talking about events past, we use a kind of amarcord, that is using a present lens to view the past {don't blame me for the definition, blame Mike Nesmith !}.
Anyway, I'd better shurrup because I haven't read her book although surprise, surprise, it's just this minute come in the post. But I won't get on to it for a few days yet because I want to finish Mike Nesmith's "Infinite Tuesday" which I'm half way through.
Dianne's will be the second Lake autobiography I've read in just over a month.

ColScott said...

Charlie was a con man who wanted to survive. He was a horrible human being AND horribly damaged

Something much overlooked.
I know there's that strand of opinion that says "well, many people have gone through such and such and haven't turned to abusing people or manipulating people or crime" or whatever but to me that rarely goes anywhere. Because even with the few people I've had experience with {in the context of the number of people there are on earth}, there are not many that passed through circumstances that damaged them and came out as model citizens, with no kinks whatsoever or reactions at times that they would later look back on regretfully, including myself. I remember being particularly struck in the 90s by the number of children and adults I knew that had had no Dad around or whose parents didn't care and had made it known. Some of those people were aware of how they'd been affected by certain things, many weren't. It took me a while to see how some of my own actions and thoughts were shaped by much of life up to that point.
A cursory glance at Charles Manson's first 25 years is all it takes to at least begin to understand so much of what went on to happen.

Peter said...

A lengthy excerpt of the book from yesterday's NY Post.

http://nypost.com/2017/10/25/reliving-the-murderous-manson-familys-dark-pull-on-an-innocent-14-year-old-girl/

CrisPOA said...

Mr. Humphrat said ...

"You can look up dialogue in non-fiction and find lots of people talking about creating dialogue in non-fiction to represent the facts even though it's not going to be word-for-word accurate. I guess writers are encouraged to do this to make the story draw the reader in"

I agree Hump, i guess the dialogues are created to give the reader a "gist" of the original conversations the author remembers.
At least to illustrate how the author remember as how (she) aknowledged a certain information through another person - another character - in an informal conversation.

CrisPOA said...

*acknowledged
Sorry my english is horrible in the mobile, as i don't have the time to check the spelling

Shorty's pistols said...

Col, Snake was a heavy supporter of Nellie? He pestered/stalked an interview out of her. Big Bill did the same with many others. That doesn't seem to be heavy support to me.

ColScott said...

Pistols- Nellie contacted pestered stalked me seven times while I had offices at the Sony Pictures Studios Lot. I eventually had security get heavy with him. I made it clear in no uncertain terms that he was an exploitative scumbag with no research skills who was setting the TLB cause back years with his narcissistic fuckwad behavior. He finally did us all a favor and died.

I did not cooperate with his bullshit website or illiterate self published books.

Snake did.

I have emails I have shared from Nancy Pitman and Alisa Statman about how Tom O'Neill, he of the yet to be published 100 years in the making definitive Manson book about how he threatened family members and old ladies to speak to him or else. They of course blew his pathetic ass off.

I think people researching this become self important, like they will find the answers nobody has found. The Col has been lucky for 20 years now to have Max Frost to call him on his shit and keep him grounded. I tried that with the fangirls who went to Clem's concert and now we have all fallen out. Reality can be hard for people.

Snake was a hardcore member of the Family who published a book 50 years later and tried to make it sound licentious. Cash grab is what it would always be.

DebS said...

The Bill Nelson/Dianne Lake interview for those interested, it's 40 minutes.

https://vimeo.com/30792435

Panamint Patty said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
ColScott said...

The Col is seeking Reality. The Col is seeking Truth. The Col is still willing to educate himself about reality.

Patty lashes out because as a fangirl she collects grave rubbings and sigils and souvenirs. She is in this for the nearness to danger.
Patty did you mean to reference SINGAPORE PRESS HOLDINGS or SHAKING MY HEAD?

I think you should hide your head in fucking shame.

Panamint Patty said...

You just don't know what you're talking about. And frankly I'm tired of the lie. And another thing why doesn't anybody stand up for me when this fuckwad hurls personal attacks against me? Why is he special? I'm fucking sick of this bullshit!

Peter said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gqw1FI1hfJA

ColScott said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knOjd5g8XcY


In fact you hurled the first insult, and you get no support because the Col doth not lie, he sees no gain in it.

You are not too old to atone and amend your life going further.

grimtraveller said...

ColScott said...

you get no support because the Col doth not lie, he sees no gain in it

You lied about Steve Grogan chopping off Shorty Shea's head. Twice.

Panamint Patty said...

And another thing why doesn't anybody stand up for me when this fuckwad hurls personal attacks against me?

Well, for one thing, you seem to be able to take care of yourself more than adequately.
Secondly, the stuff he says is kind of obscure. Personally, I don't know what he's on about. As for being at the Clem gig, the group that went was pretty much supported by those that responded to the post. I don't recall major criticisms of you or the group from anyone other than Scotty.
He's definitely got a way with words but they're like this insect repellent I bought in Corfu in 2015 ~ it stings mightily, initially, then just carries an interesting odour once you realize that it's no big deal.

ColScott said...

Oh Grim who has a ripped shirt and looks homeless-

Steve Grogan Chopped Shea's head
Did it a lot until he was dead
When he saw what he had done
He joined a band for Patty to have Fun!

Your last 4 words should be on your next tee shirt as a memorialization of your life

Bobby said...

Hi Patty, the so called col. Is the most rotten nasty insulting person I've ever come across in blogs. I know you all hang out and go on trips so your probably more friendly than I know. However, the shit he has said to st.c. you, grim and countless people over the years just makes me want to spit in his face. GRIM handles it so well it amazes me. St. C. still seems to want to please him. St. C. has been so kind to me and it hurts me when col. Insults him so I've no problem with how he handles it either.

Patty, I stick up for you. Bob.




Panamint Patty said...

Thank you Grim for your kind gesture. You are a class act.

ColScott said...

ROTFLMAO- his profile foto looks like a child rapist who lost a struggle with a 4 year old. Class all the way!

Panamint Patty said...

Bobby you're class too. Xx

grimtraveller said...

ColScott said...

Your last 4 words should be on your next tee shirt as a memorialization of your life

I wouldn't disagree with that. Watch this space !

DebS said...

The Hog Farm was started by Hugh Romney and his wife Bonnie Jean

Bonnie Jean plays a couple of really great parts in episodes of "The Fugitive" during 1966. In both episodes, she's plays a woman that's in love with the fugitive but she plays each differently and really cleverly. In one, she almost kills the cop that's after the fugitive with a pitchfork and in the other, she's the sister of a young woman with the mental age of a child, who, strangely, in a different episode, played the part of a young girl with the mental age of an even younger girl.

Shorty's pistols said...

Col, I'm sure you gave 'ol Nellie a hard way to go, he deserved every bit of it. Diane gave him an interview, a pretty good one at that. That doesn't mean she was a true believer in all things Bill.

Nelson was a scumbag, there is no doubt about that shit.

I did spot a discrepancy btw Lakes interview with Nellie and her book. in the BN interview, she claims DeDe Lansbury (SP?) was the girl with the hall pass from Mom. In her book, she claims she did have such a note.

The only thing Nelson did of any positive nature was his harassment of Tex and his little "Prison family". Largely thru Nellie's efforts, all the air went out of Tex's little prison scam. That was great, I wish I did it.

Rock N. Roll said...

I say the Col is out of line. It’s one thing to have an opinion but to go after others is just fucking unacceptable.

Dude, don’t believe your own press especially when you write it. Despite what you ego is telling you it’s all bullshit. Try smoking indica.

Fiddy 8 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fiddy 8 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lynn said...

The Hog Farm is in the hills above Sunland, not Tujunga. Sunland-Tujunga was also home to several motorcycle gangs and i think the Straight Satan's figure into that history. Bobby Beausoleil actually lived in Sunland for awhile, I believe he lived with his aunt

Lynn said...

An article on the Hog Farm and how to access it:
https://www.kcet.org/shows/artbound/the-past-in-the-present-the-sunland-hog-farm-commune

Mr. Humphrat said...

I support you Patty. I'm all for you doing whatever makes you happy, whether it's going to cemeteries or Clem shows-I don't judge you. I do think the Col. is good for many laughs and obviously he's "forgotten more than I'll ever know" about TLB, but since he knows he's upsetting you for real he should stop and stick to hurling insults at the Teflon Scholar of TLB, Grim, the greatest researcher of TLB the world has ever seen.

Logan said...

Grim said: "But it suddenly occurred to me that someone in Dianne's position is utterly different from us. We've more or less all been students of the case for quite a while and dates, times and places have a meaning to us that they probably wouldn't have to those that lived it."

I often think about this aspect of my fascination with the murders & the histories of the people and places involved with them. This case, which constitutes a "hobby" or at least a sustained interest for many of us (myself included), consists of the lives of many people. Which, of course, everyone knows, but it is strange (for me at least) to dwell on this fact. (Not that I'm saying it's morbid or "immoral" to have an interest in TLB et. al or true crime in general; I feel like students of WWI, II, the russian revolution, the american civil war, the black death, really any history lol, are also fascinated by the epoch-specific but inherently relatable human spectacle & tragedy of the past much in the same way people drawn to this case are).

I feel a great deal of sympathy for people like Dianne, Tex, Bobby & of course the families, friends and lovers of the victims. I think it must be incredibly surreal & depressing to have the worst times of your life constantly analyzed & picked apart by people who can never truly have insight or understanding into what it was you were thinking and feeling during those times. But, once the past becomes history, you're subject to this type of skewed historical dissection; we all are (especially if we happen to lead a particularly "heinous", "significant" or "exciting" lifestyle).
That's why I've always really enjoyed & respected the work of Deb, Dreath, George & the other researchers on this blog. Y'all try to do the impossible task of fleshing out the past in a humane and sincere way, of making the motivations, truths & realities of those people involved with this particular series of events which occurred in a particular time & space tangible through the fruits of your research and experiences.

I love history; I love learning about the myriad ways humans have chosen or been forced to spend time on this planet. I think what fascinates me most about any kind of history is the simultaneous connection & disconnection I feel from the person or event being studied...a very hard-to-describe feeling which Grim summed up in the aforementioned quote.

Matt said...

Col, if I want to get grounded I'll put some hematite in my pockets, sit in the lotus position and read the Upanishads. If you want to be a bully Grim and I are fair game. We don't give a shit. Leave Patty alone.


Rob King said...

Stop the press...you mean there are clashing personalities on a Manson blog? I'll be damn.
I don't post anymore because I offended Matt's sensibilities but I was always a huge Patty fan so a standard F U to the Col just because.
And Col...bullying is a form of lying unless you are willing to say it to the face...and throw down if warranted. Maybe we can all meet at Charlie's funeral and have a hockey brawl. I've insulted Saint numerous times because frankly I found him insufferable - both shallow and self-promotional at the same. His self-title of "favorite saint" being an example. But then I have always been willing and even keen on saying this to his face and dropping the gloves.
Damn, if fisticuffs are frowned upon on a Manson blog the world is doomed.
So Col...all due disrespect...unless you are willing to spout your nasties to Party's face WITH her husband standing next to her...then you are indeed both a bully and a liar.

Mr. Humphrat said...

Got my book from Amazon in only two days yay!

DebS said...

OT

Tarantino is having studios go through a process in order to bid on the theatrical rights to his upcoming Manson project. Harvey Weinstein had been Tarantino's partner for his previous films but Harvey is out due to his recent troubles.

https://www.thewrap.com/quentin-tarantino-manson-bidding-war-makes-studios-kiss-the-ring-exclusive/

Sounds like the script is already written.

ColScott said...

Matt

Read the thread much better please

Patty brought the rain

Panamint Patty said...

"fangirl"

Lynn said...

OT (off the grid and out in left field, Dodgers style)...If you arrange a trip to the Hog Farm in Sunland, would love to join you.

Btw, viewing you as a blogger and commenter, I appreciate you and your point of view

Terrapin said...

Peter... perfect timing with the South Park clip.. thats the most i've laughed all day and i watched a south park episode today.

Whats wrong with Dr Phil? Does he have a cold or is he drunk or is that just how he is now? Haven't seen an episode in years.

Back to the subject.. release date in Australia has been pushed back to November 20 so i gotta wait to get my copy :(

St Circumstance said...

1/2

Perspective :

It is a blog about a murder that happened almost half a century ago. I used to think it was my obligation to argue with every new knucklehead who threw an insult my way. . But then I turned 50 and realized life is just too short. This is just not worth it.

I do think it is fair for anyone to bully anyone else. I do no think it is fair for anyone to judge what lines should be crossed for anyone else- I just try to stay on the right side of my own.

I agree with almost everything Col says when he comments or posts- even when it is about me. I did used to get butt-hurt, and I dont really know that much about the case compared to some others. I do act sanctimonious at times, and at others I am just a jerk.

I almost never agree with the way he delivers his comments, but he is a character and a voice that carries his own weight. He has a style and message that I happen to like very much. As well, he is a person to be respected, and I get to chose for myself who I like and respect and who I don't. WE ALL DO!

Speaking of which I like Patty very much. I have met Patty and Col in person exactly the same amount of times. I have seen them interact together. I think we all do much better as friends and working together than we do drawing lines in the sand and arguing among ourselves about who knows more versus who goes too far. In some ways- we all go too far.I don't know a psychologist in the world who would say this is a healthy fascination to have, and most of us involved to this extent must admit we have, at least that.

Patty you can always count on me to have your back if you need it, but Im just not sure this is the case here. I dont think Col means you any ill will, and at one time or another almost all of us feel his wrath. If he hurt your feelings then I am with Matt and he should knock it off. I do not want to see you get hurt. You are a friend and agree with you or not- you can count on me if you need me when push comes to shove.

Let me just remind all that we may never know what the real motive is or what truly went down. What we will be left with is a decade of people who interacted with each other and communicated almost daily or weekly. Do we want to walk away from this someday with people we can call pseudo friends, or do we want to fill in the voids in information and at the end of the day when Charlie is gone and there is nothing left to discuss, a bunch of strangers who we have bad feelings about, and hard feelings towards??

By the way, I am not interested in fighting strangers over Charles Manson on any level. I am a pretty nice guy in person and really try hard to stay away from trouble.
As well, we just finished an excellent post about lurkers. All of us agreed it would be so much better if more of them participate. Does threads like this encourage a nervous newbie from getting involved? Hmmmm I wonder? If we are going to go so hard after each other, why should they feel comfortable that nobody will attack them for there opinions or interests??

Maybe a deep breath, and some reflection are in order? Or, maybe not lol

St Circumstance said...

2/2

Either way, I like you all. Col is always going to be my favorite read, and Max Frost is an amazing guy, Patty is a sweetheart who wouldn't hurt a fly and deserves respect, and the rest of it is mashed potatoes as far as I am concerned. Its Saturday, there are sports all over the TV, beers in the fridge and I just got a fresh half ounce. If anyone wants to sweat this any further than it has already gone- you have to do it without me. I wasn't even going to comment on this, but my name came up a few times and I wanted to show some loyalty to Patty, who along with Stoner, have been very good to me. Doesn't mean I agree with all they do, or support. As with George, I disagree with some of the things they do and say. But I like them and they are solid human beings who are entitled to their opinions and interests- as am I. I am sure they find quite a few things about me not in there wheelhouse.... I am glad they humor me and allow me to be myself. It is how we can all get along. I wear Sperry's, Calvin Klein shorts and Pink Ralph Lauren shirts, lol, there is plenty about me for most Manson Family followers to make fun of. What are you going to do?? So if you need to pile on someone- Like Matt and Grim- its OK if you send it my way. I have become immune to it. I just wish we could all get along because I was thinking this might be the best tour ever, especially if some of the new people are going to show up, and meeting the Col and Max was the highlight of my first tour and it would be a real big deal to have them participate to a lot of other people I bet.... I was thinking of making my return this year as well, in fact, I am so enthused about the recent rise in level of participation. I would love to meet some more of these people. The more the merrier I say and plus- It would make for a really fun party.

Have a great weekend all of you. Patty this is your site and you will always have my support and backing. It didn't get me far to give blind loyalty to Liz lol, but I never learn any lessons the first time around anyway. Col- you are my favorite person in the community and that wont change, but PLEASE go a little easy on this one. It puts everyone in a tight spot when you go after one of the very few sacred members of the blog...

By the way, in my entire life nobody who ever used the word "Keen" ever kicked my ass :)

- Your Favorite Saint

St Circumstance said...

I meant Do Not think it is fair for anyone to bully anyone else- but I guess most of you figured that out lol

Peace and Love :)

AustinAnn74 said...

I want to finally meet everyone in person too, one of these days. When is the 2018 tour?

Trilby said...

It's a MEMOIR not a "true crime" book, re: "fact-checking", Jeezus... It's her perspective on what SHE lived through. She was a teenager!! I LOVED this book; pre-ordered it but it hadn't arrived, so I downloaded it onto my B&N Nook in the meanwhile. What an amazing, strong and resilient soul she is, and I love her dry sense of humor. She really had the perfect collaborator, because her personality comes through in every word.

I found the part about her recollection of an African-American man yelling at Manson intriguing. She says her assumption is that it was Crowe, but very possibly it was someone else. Ed Sanders has written of some trouble Manson was having with a "black dope syndicate and their dealers". I still think Manson et al. had to answer to more people than just Crowe re: that burn.

Reading through these comments has been a reality check for me, to not get too wrapped up in this stuff anymore. How is it that almost NO ONE was able to see this for what it is: a great memoir and something to celebrate - the fact that this amazing woman survived all she was put through and fully triumphed in the end. She's accomplished so much and has the love and support of a great family, and now fully owns and has integrated her past and present. I'll say it again: I absolutely LOVE her personality. And I mean, 100%, not "Dianne Lake the ex-Manson Family member" but Dianne "surname unknown", the honest, frank human soul. While I found some new info interesting - in particular her analysis of various personalities and motivations - this book to me is INSPIRATIONAL.

And Col.: I guess it's not okay for her to write her own truth and own it (and I hope she f*cking profits immensely off of it, because surer than hell others have profited off of exploiting her, starting with that pimp sonofabitch Manson); but churning out one crappy movie sequel after another is somehow something more noble than a money grab? Or is it just okay when YOU do it? Mind you, I don't begrudge anyone their ability to make some money. But I find the hypocrisy astounding. You've been a lot of things over the course of time in the TLB online bubble, but not usually a hypocrite.

Love ya, "Patty". This too shall pass. (Now that I've hung a great big bull-eye on myself, maybe sooner rather than later, LOL. o_O)

Trilby said...

"bulls-eye"? "bull's-eye"? "bullseye" (definitely not right). Awww, hell, I kinda like "bull-eye"... More coffee, please.

starviego said...

Trilby said...
"I found the part about her recollection of an African-American man yelling at Manson intriguing. She says her assumption is that it was Crowe, but very possibly it was someone else."

Does she say when that occurred?

grimtraveller said...

Matt said...

If you want to be a bully Grim and I are fair game

Bullying me became an impossibility after 1974. 😆

ColScott said...

Oh Grim who has a ripped shirt and looks homeless

My shirts may go ripped but they never go homeless. Either e~Bay or landfill.
In any case, Jesus was homeless ! 👍

Snake was a hardcore member of the Family who published a book 50 years later and tried to make it sound licentious. Cash grab is what it would always be

Actually, it's more a case of simple economics and one of its most basic elements; supply and demand.
There's a coterie of people that are interested in her story even if there is some cynicism among them. She caters to that demand. I don't see that it's a problem for her to make a little money from satisfying the little demand that is there. That's economics in the capitalist system.
I suspect that even the cynical are secretly pleased that she's come out with the book.😉 These artifacts are few and far between.

Monica said...

The book was very good. I recommend it. There are gonna be inaccuracies because she was 14-16 and it was almost 50 years ago. Her story is from a completely different perspective than the others we have all read. I found her story a refreshing addition to the sea of repetitive Manson books and stories and interviews and Oprah shows and yada and yada and yada. By the way, I did find George's book one that differed from the bunch too. While I might not agree with everything George wrote, his made me think about all sides. (Gosh, I sound like our president.) I am interested to hear his opinion on Dianne's.

Dianne was very lucky that she was able to build a life after what she experienced. I believe most of what she wrote. In fine if it's a cash grab. (Col, please be nice to this newbie lurker and the rest of my people. In my real job, I stand tall with serious heavies every day so I can give serious bites, but I prefer to hug.)

Unknown said...

New to the group but I've lurked for a while. I listened to Dianne Lake's book read by her and I'm impressed with her perspective. I've always assumed Manson was a creep but this book sheds more light on this with a ground view of life with Charlie and the Family. I've read Watson's, Atkins' and Watkins' books and this one may be my favorite. Her innocent, child-like view of the world and of CM et al is refreshing and unique. One interesting passage is when she assigns Shorty's killers as Manson, Bruce, Clem and Tex in a very matter-of-fact way. Tex? I have long suspected this as many others have stated here. Maybe she knows more than she's revealing. I'm not sure how anyone can defend Manson after reading this book. He really is a monster. Whether the TLB motive is HS, revenge, freeing Bobby or a drug-burn is irrelevant. Manson's a full on monster. I know he was damaged as a youth, but at some point we all must take responsibility for our actions as adults and every CM interview I've seen (which is lots) is peppered with the blame game spewed by Chuckleberry himself. Fully recommended. I have Little Paul's book in PDF form if anyone wants it.

grimtraveller said...

David said...

I am finding a number of inconsistencies with other sources....Like the B.B. mistake many are verifiable with Wikipedia

brownrice said...

Interesting discrepancies

DebS said...

The kindest thing I can say about that is Dianne apparently didn't read any books or the internet before writing her book

Nonymous said...

At the beginning of the book there is a disclaimer about the dialogue...No she doesn’t study this as history....There are plenty of discrepancies

I'm at page 304~ish and something that keeps running through my mind and has been doing so ever since she recounts first meeting the Family, is that she has obviously read or been informed about various books and parole hearing transcripts. She actually says this at one point, which confirmed what I'd suspected. It seems to me that she read the obligatory HS and Paul Watkins' and Nuel Emmons' books. Watkins' book in particular infuses parts of her book like the ghost of the heart.
One could argue not so much that she didn't check her facts but checked them from the wrong sources ! Thus far there are aspects of the book that uncomfortably remind me of Tex's books and the way that he has a tendency to repeat some of his statements from already existing sources, some of which are supposition and not accurate, as opposed to his memory.

David said...

Either don't make the statements, hire a fact checker, do a google search or say in bold letters, and at every interview 'I'm not sure my memory is accurate, I could be wrong' the problem.....that doesn't sell books

One of the most interesting things I've found in the book thus far are the number of times she pretty much does do this, ie, state that she's not sure of X or she didn't actually see Y or didn't know what this person was thinking or why this went on etc.
In doing so however, she does some filling in of her own, which is interesting in some departments and annoying in others.

Trilby said...

It's a MEMOIR not a "true crime" book, re: "fact-checking", Jeezus... It's her perspective on what SHE lived through. She was a teenager!!

I agree with that to some extent but I'll ask the question, should you be writing about matters that you can't really have any perspective on, given that you don't know for sure if they took place or have no recollection of ? Now, one does have to split hairs here, for example, things she may not have been aware of at the time but found out later could explain shifts, moods or events that she does recall. That's legit. But some of the others make one wonder.

grimtraveller said...

Unknown said...

I'm not sure how anyone can defend Manson after reading this book. He really is a monster. Whether the TLB motive is HS, revenge, freeing Bobby or a drug-burn is irrelevant. Manson's a full on monster. I know he was damaged as a youth, but at some point we all must take responsibility for our actions as adults

This is true but I think we underestimate the extent of how damage in youth can grow into damage in adulthood. Because it does not affect everyone in the same way and some come out the other side "OK" doesn't mean that everyone should respond this way ~ although I wish we would all respond to trauma in a positive way that includes going out of our way never to hurt or harm another human being. But it's not a matter of "should respond this way." I can't get away from the notion that if the representatives of a society that are supposed to take care of you {such as your Mum and Dad, your uncle in whose care you are who makes you wear a dress to school and reform school wardens that allow you to be violated and in some cases instigate it} don't, it won't be surprising if eventually, you cut your losses and, as the Col put it earlier, do what one has to do in one's own mind to survive.
Generally speaking, that may not include altruistic feelings with the actions to match. That Charlie Manson treated the women with violence and dominated the men of the Family is not in the least bit surprising to me. That he treated Dianne and the other females as a commodity to be used as a makeweight in cons and deals is, from the perspective of Manson's own life, up to that point, chillingly logical. The real Jesus challenged people to treat others as they themselves wanted to be treated. The Spahn Jesus treated people with the same mindset as he felt he had been treated.
Ouch !
That said, Charlie really does not come over well in this book. But in thinking about it, there's not many in which he does come over well except for "Crucified ~ The Railroading of Charles Manson", parts of Nuel Emmons' book and funnily enough, David Williams' book "Searching for God in the 60s" and even they are borderline, depending on which side of the fence you decide to stand.