Monday, October 28, 2013

Austin Ann's Recommended Reading!

My latest library find was a helluva selection! "Life After Murder: Five Men In Search Of Redemption" by Nancy Mullane is a MUST READ for anyone interested in reading about crime & punishment in the state of California, and Tate/LaBianca case researchers everywhere. Why, you ask? Well, let me put it this way: After reading this book, you will understand why Pat, Leslie, Bobby, Bruce, Tex & Charlie aint ever gonna see the outside of a prison! While the book doesn't mention anything about the Tate/LaBianca/Hinman/Shea murderers, it does explain in great detail the California parole system, and how, if you are unlucky enough to be convicted of murder in California, the small chance you will ever have of returning to free society. In other words, after reading this book, I have no doubt Manson, and his ex-disciples will ever get out. The author also writes a lot about how unfair it is that the governor can make an inmate wait up to 150 days, and then take his/her parole date away, which happens most of the time, and how the inmates suffer horribly from the torture of not knowing their fate. It will definitely make you think! Of course, I am for victims rights too, but in some cases, I think change, and redemption can happen. Anyway, here is the "official" description of the book:

Life After Murder is an intimately reported, utterly compelling story of five convicted murderers sentenced to life with the possibility of parole, who discover after decades in prison that their second chance, if it comes at all, is also the challenge of a lifetime. It follows their struggle for redemption, their legal battles to make good on the state’s promise of parole, and the lives they found after so many years inside.


Matt said...

OK Ann, before you jump (mentally) too far ahead of the rest of us, tell US about the MOST significant EVENT that "first" really changed America. Hint,hint, it wasn't the assassination of JFK, it wasn't the black uprisings. It was the "Texas Tower Sniper" 1966! Tell US how relevant that incident is today's School Shootings, etc. It's time.

Robert Hendrickson

Farflung said...

The present parole system is the result of a Faustian bargain ONE judge triggered, while paving a path with good intentions (as they all believe). Unfortunately little will change without some root cause analysis followed by changes to the process.

Hackneyed phrases like: “That’s for a jury to decide” leaves me cold, since the ONLY thing a jury decides upon is acquittal. Twelve votes not-guilty and that’s that. No retrial, no reviews, no concern over whether or not it was a fair trial because the defendant got off. If the jury delivers any other answer then it is up to a judge or DA to decide. Go ahead jury, listen to months of testimony, view all the evidence, deliberate on the fate of a fellow citizen, then deliver your unanimous decision, because it can all be undone and invalidated by ONE person, with a lifelong appointment to their job. Gosh, what could possibly go wrong there?

If it’s good for the goose (Supreme Court) it should be good for the gander. So let’s get rid of these pesky election cycles and appoint presidents, assemblypersons, and DMV employees for life. So much more efficient and people holding those positions won’t have to worry about outside influences and do whatever they see as fit. And that’s always something good. Sure my driver’s license expires for reasons unknown, and rightfully should be granted for life. ID cards expire, even though the person holding the card is still quite alive, and we have collectively accepted this as logical. That octagonal sign, which is red in color, still needs the word STOP stenciled in white paint, to serve as an example of mass global stupidity. Quebec has stop signs which are bi-lingual which qualifies as double imbecilic. But once something has entered a socially acceptable norm, it becomes extremely difficult to remove (white only drinking fountains).

Prop 89, or California’s parole review for murderers, is the end result of an astonishingly small group of people, flexing their political views upon millions of citizens of the state. The person in question was sentenced to death, but ended up walking among us. Having the Death Penalty suspended by one person was tweaking the nose of everyone. Giving the person with the commuted Death Penalty a release on parole was an atomic dick-punch, resulting in the passage of Prop 89. The existence of the voter proposition program in California is the spawn of equally high government incompetence. The somewhat famous Prop 13 was enacted to literally stop the state from taxing people out of their homes, as a way to meet budget deficits versus spending controls. It was truly a shameful chapter in the state’s history and the majority of Californians today weren’t born yet, or lived somewhere else during that debacle, so awareness is minimal. Same with what appears to be a flawed parole system (which is true) but the failure point is upstream.

Governors won’t be anxious to parole a murderer because of a recall election. Keep in mind that Gray Davis wasn’t recalled for paroling killers, but for allowing power shortages during summer, and us Californians needs our air conditioning. If you can “threaten public safety” by disrupting electric service, what would releasing a few dozen psychos do for your chances of a recall?

Even after all this history which offers a pretty simple causal relationship between dithering with crime and punishment, while treating the average citizen like a child, or less; there’s another California judge who thinks it’s infinitely wise to halt executions because lethal injections may be cruel and unusual. The timing is right for history to repeat since most Californians are new to this stuff, but there’s a “third rail” just waiting to be stepped on which will result in another Proposition 89-esque environment, which will be lamented and questioned by the next generation.

starship said...

Groove on this for a while, Mr. Hendrickson

AustinAnn74 said...

Mr. Hendrickson, I don't understand what you mean by jumping ahead of everyone. Perhaps I will think of your question in deeper detail as I enjoy a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili!

Anonymous said...

2011 governor brown releases 80% of convicted murderers, with 1/3 having life sentences.
Another famous case was John Miller, convicted in 1959 for killing a baby, received a life sentence and was paroled in the mid seventies, to only kill again. Also Todd Fergusen released after serving 29 year on a life sentence, also to kill again including his parents.
The book is incorrect in it's summation, parole for killers happens quite often in California.
Charlie's demise with the parole board is his big mouth and never taking responsibility, the rest of the clan is screwed due to their attachment to the head donkey and their callous attitude early on.

AustinAnn74 said...

I agree!!!

leary7 said...

I try to resist commenting on this blog, though I do read it, but every now and then something is said that just has to be responded to.
Last time I commented it was in reaction to Mr. Hendrickson's "heaven and hell meeting at Cielo Drive comment.
But this one is even more of a head scratcher. The Texas Tower shooting "changed America" more than the JFK assassination???
Sorry RH, but you've gone off the deep end.
On a more humorous note I have a weird connection to both events. I unknowingly rented an apt at the Penthouse Apartment building in Austin, the very apt that Whitman went to and killed his mother before climbing up the Tower. And of course I was engaged to Oswald's daughter.
Austin is a happening place.

Matt said...

Holy Shit Starship, that's what I'm talk'in about!

ANN: We're ALL still trying to figure out the real MANSON "motive" and you are already way ahead of us, dealing with the consequences. NOW, look BACK and you should SEE a group of young people who didn't CARE about the consequences. AND everytime I see AustinAnn in print, I remember when I was in the Army in TEXAS when "Charles" Whitman performed the FIRST real domestic "massacre" in Austin, Texas. We watched it on TV as it was going down. Austin, Texas is where it all began.

AND Max, that's when all the "police" forces across America began to form "SWAT" teams to deal with such domestic violance. The "establishment" actually saw and realized that the Texas Tower event was a prelude to the future.

Robert Hendrickson

Farflung said...

Here’s another dataset which may help illustrate the “production chokepoint” regarding California’s parole process. First to note is the “Class of ‘72” which included the commutation of California’s entire death row which totaled – 107.

Death Row Re-offender and his Mmm- Mmm-Mother

There are a few things which make this a wild statistical ride. I’ve noticed how demagoguery drives most people as some disembodied voice on some TV program will gravely announce how “California’s prison population has more than doubled in the last forty years”. Unlike the vast majority of states in the US, California has experienced a doubling in population in the same timeframe. So I would expect the prison population to roughly follow that growth curve.

So in 1972 there were 107 people on Death Row, with the state population being double today, should put the number of prisoners close to 225 – 250. Nope. It is over 725 at present or 678% more. This is some fertile ground for number crunchers to use for their own pre-selected conclusions.

In the same article above, is a table (mid right) which illustrates the parole hearings by governor. Astonishingly it begins in ’78 with Jerry Brown, and ends in ’11 with…. Jerry Brown. One can see the exponential ramp up of suitability hearings from one or two, to over seven thousand. Obviously this isn’t an arithmetically sustainable process no matter what your political views may be. That table tells me, time alone will decide who will be the governor which is forced to open the flood gates of parole grants, and not ethos. Same with the massive increase in Death Row population, either there is an unchecked murder spree in the state, or the number of executions (output) is woefully behind the standard crime rate (input). Either way, there’s more than enough wild variance due to dependant variables which interact with independent variables (created by new laws) to produce just about any statistical outcome a person desires.

Prison overcrowding (the aforementioned increase of 200%) is used as justification for increasing parole grants. Public safety is no longer a consideration in this case. Death Row overcrowding (678% increase) is never used as a justification to resume or increase executions, or commute their sentences to life with the possibility of parole. The latter isn’t used, even though it is a similar solution to general overcrowding, while suspending public safety concerns.

Matt said...

To Leary7:

YOU tapped into a real American clue. The DEEP end is where the adults dive in. The shallow end is where all the little kids play and piss. Thank God I learned the difference a long time ago. Many adults spend their entire life wondering in the shallow end with the little children.

And sometimes they even dive in the shallow end and crack their skulls, resulting in brain damage. As Patty noticed, I talk in riddles - cause the cops are listening. Don't want them to "Get-it" now do we?

Robert Hendrickson

leary7 said...

No offense because I know RH is an icon in the Manson research world. But...
"Many adults spent their entire life wondering in the shallow end with little children' and 'the shallow end is where all the little kids play and piss'".

You're saying that is a riddle???
Just reads like some serious paranoid dementia to me.
Sorry, but talk like that is why most folk think all us Manson students are whack jobs.

Matt said...

To Leary:

I sincerely apologize. I mis-spoke. PLEASE dis-regard my previous post about swimming in deep water and wondering in the shallow end.

Robert Hendrickson

leary7 said...

absolutely obviously clearly no need to apologize RH...unless that is a riddle too. I'll have to ask Patty. But your iconic status means your words have enormous weight. I do respect you very much.

BoSox are champs and tonight is candy night so Mansonology is furthest thing from my mind today.

AustinAnn74 said...

Mr. Hendrickson, very interesting you would mention the UT Tower shooting. My dad was a student at UT in 1966, and was taking a couple of summer classes. Him, and a roommate were walking back to their apartment on Guadalupe street (the drag), and heard, and SAW the sniper up in the tower. They ran into a fried chicken restaurant, and took cover. I remember my dad telling us that story when I was a kid. It always freaked me out. The UT tower STILL has bullet marks in it. My dad says when he drives into Austin from where he lives about 20 miles outside, he always gets the creeps looking at the tower. You can see it from a long way away. Of course, the view of the tower will probably be ruined in a couple of years by developers building yuppie high-rise apartments! Austin is definitely not the same Texas-college-music town.

worm killa said...

Hi! I do enjoy your blog here! It would be interestimg to know howany of those 107 who had their death sentences commuted to life in prison actually got paroled