Monday, August 6, 2012

Acid Dreams: The Complete Social History of LSD, The CIA, The Sixties and Beyond

Please indulge me while I get back on my Brotherhood of Eternal Love rap. Having read two other books on the subject, I purchased a copy of this book from for a very reasonable price. There is a lot more detail herein about what was going on in the Brotherhood during 1969: Specifically check out Chapter 9: The "Season of the Witch," beginning on page 223 of 345.

I'm not going to transcribe the entire chapter for you like The Colonel might do, but let me carve out some of the more pertinent parts for you:

"The saga of the Brotherhood of Eternal Love is a bizarre melange of evangelical, starry-eyed hippy dealers, mystic alchemists and fast-money bankers. Federal investigators described them as a "Hippie Mafia" of approximately 750 people that allegedly grossed $200,000,000.

It all started back in 1966 when a motorcycle gang from Anaheim...held up a Hollywood producer at gunpoint and robbed him of his stash of Sandoz LSD. A wekk later the bikers dropped the acid on a hill overlooking Palm Springs in Joshua Tree National Park. They must have seen the Burning Bush, for they threw away their guns and ran around the desert at midnight screaming, "This is it!"

While (the) Mystic Arts (head shop) provided a steady income, it wasn't enough for the ambitious plans of the Brotherhood. They needed more money to purchase land for their growing membership, so they started dealing drugs - mostly marijuana at first...Within the next few years the Brotherhood of Eternal Love developed into a sophisticated smuggling and distribution network that stretched around the globe.

There was just one hitch in the otherwise flawless operation: they lacked a sufficient quantity of LSD for wholesale marketing. Ever since Owsley's arrest in late 1967, a steady supply of high-quality street acid had been hard to come by.

With the Brotherhood ready to serve as their distribution arm, Sand and Scully embarked upon a full-fledged manufacturing spree. (Billy) Hitchcock bought some property in Windsor, a small town sixty miles north of San Francisco. In January of 1969, Sand and Scully went to work.

By the time the Windsor lab shut down in June 1969, Sand and Scully had turned out no less than ten million hits of the soon-to-be-famous orange sunshine. The chemists protected themselves by keeping the drug off the streets until they liquidated the entire laboratory. They also experimented with new formulas, concocting a grab bag of psychedelics, some of them scarcely known to the scientific community, let alone narcotic officials. Hitchcock concurrently hired a prestigious New York law firm - Rabinowitz, Boudin and Standard - to research the legal status of obscure hallucinogenic drugs.

The image of the Brotherhood as saintly dealers did not tally with the seamier side of the fast-money crowd that gravitated around Billy Hitchcock, the sugar daddy of the LSD counterculture.

In the spring of 1968 Hitchcock and acid chemist Nick Sand journeyed to The Bahamas, where they stayed at the spacious mansion of Sam Clapp, chairman of the local Fiduciary Trust Company. Clapp was a college chum of Hitchcock's and they had been doing business together for years...Hitchcock took full advantage of his unlimited borrowing priviledges at Fiduciary. At Clapp's urging he poured over $5,000,000 into unregistered "letter stocks" associated with the Mary Carter Paint Company, later known as Resorts organization supected of having ties to organized crime. Resorts International proceeded to build a casino...called Paradise Island. It was new year's eve 1968 and the guest of honor at this gala event was none other than Richard Nixon."

But wait, there's more!