Monday, September 16, 2019

Manson & Me: The Human Side of Charles Manson

This new book, published on July 29, opens, “21 years ago, I went to meet Charles Manson in the visiting room of Corcoran State Prison. He was just as special as I expected him to be.”  The last sentences of the book:  Charlie “is like a drug, and his followers, junkies visiting him every weekend to get another hit of the Manson formula. What the formula was exactly? I cannot tell you and no one ever will.”  The rest of the book?  A combination of interviews with Manson, Squeaky, Sandy, ex-cons and others who loved him the most.  Lots of pictures, letters from fans, artwork and poems.  It’s a quick read and and it mentions little about the sheer brutality of the crimes. My initial opinion?  I almost threw up reading it. I was disgusted that the author is a smart, modern woman who seemed to believe Charlie's nonsense and based a book on the opinions of Charlie, wackadoodle Sandy and Squeaky, and others known for making crappy decisions. I finished the book feeling dirty and embarrassed and wishing I’d never decided to write this review. 

Then, I decided to read the book again.

The second time, I read it as a young, empathetic girl might have interpreted it - someone who knew nothing about the crimes. Here’s why:  Since I started learning about this case, I’ve been fascinated by how Charlie influenced normal, smart girls to do things they’d never ordinarily do. I am similarly fascinated by how Hitler convinced smart people to obliterate the Jewish population and how anyone would willingly behave horribly to further a cause. I’ve often wondered whether I would have succumbed to Manson's charms, had I been an impressionable girl in the late sixties. So, the second time I read the book was to gain the perspective of a Manson groupie.  

And I kid you not, I was charmed. I get it now. If Manson presented himself like the book represents him, I can totally see why the Family members fell for it.  In the book, he is a loving, weary old man who wants to be understood. He’s been persecuted all his life.  He feels awful about how everything went wrong in the summer of 1969 – he just wanted to support the decisions of the Family. Many of the other inmates and guards have grown to respect him. He doesn’t know why strangers adore him, but he tries his best to be what his visitors want. Mostly, he wants to die in peace.



Then, I decided to read the book again.

The third time, I read it with a critical eye.  Is it different than the other Manson-related books?  Yes. It’s written in a softer voice. The tone of the book is very gentle. The whole thing is about Manson’s last twenty years, written by someone whose goal was to present him as a human and not a monster. The book doesn't go on and on. It has lots of pictures I hadn’t seen. Was there anything surprising in the book?  Yes. Manson claims to have had recurring nightmares during which he is haunted by the ghost of Sharon Tate, and he keeps trying to reason with that ghost. He also says he wants people to forgive him for what he and the family did. Is the book believable? Meh. 

So...who should read the book?

If you are pro-Manson, add it to your collection right away.  It is, by far, the most sensitive pro-Manson book I’ve read.  You’ll love everything about it.  You’ll feel sorry for this old man who’s been in prison all these years for what he said is Tex’s crime. You’ll be proud of good ole Charlie and happy that someone captured his last years so well.

If you want to learn more about the facts of the case, stay far away from this book. You’ll learn nothing.  Instead, read Helter Skelter.  Read Restless Souls.  Read Deb’s new book about Shorty.  Watch all of Stoner’s videos. Watch Six Degrees of Helter Skelter. Read every blog entry on this site and on Col's old site. 

If you are anti-Manson and think he is delusional and dangerous, you’ll be very offended. Do not read this book under any circumstances. 

If you think you know every single thing about this case, read the book to gain a better understanding of how Charlie captured the hearts of the Family. As you read it, change your perspective to that of a young, impressionable, questioning teenager. It may help you understand Charlie's charm. 

This book is available on Amazon. 

146 comments:

Peter said...

"To show the world the true Hitler, the Hitler you loved, the Hitler you knew, the Hitler with a song in his heart."

John said...

Thank you for warning away from this book.

grimtraveller said...

Monica wrote...

The whole thing is....written by someone whose goal was to present him as a human and not a monster

The thing for me is that every book or article that I've ever read involving Charles Manson, from "Infamous murders" back in 1977 right through to the present day with "Inside the Manson jury - from deliberation to death sentence," has, in my opinion, presented him as a human being. I'm not of the opinion that we don't have that monstrous element to our being. There is "them and us" but the fight is not to allow "them" to become us. But "them" ever lurks.
Manson was very human. Capable of tenderness, consideration and unfeeling bastardliness.

Panamint Patty said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Milly James said...

That is what makes him frightening. Given what's going on in our own city at the moment,your comment is even more poignant.

AstroCreep said...

Lil Mon Durphy = Manson Blog herpes

kraut_iznota_knotsy said...

"Deb's book about Shorty?"
What book is that? Would love to read something Deb wrote.
NMI please. Thanks.

Monica said...

Yes Mon. That is my point exactly. The people reading this blog either know A LOT or are curious lurkers. But most have a strong opinion one way or the other. No one should waste their time.
Grim - the consensus of the public is that CM is the boogeyman not a human. While I agree with your statement, I think this book did better than most at showing he was human by someone who did not start off as a Manson friend.

Monica said...

Kraut, Deb's book is on Amazon. Search for "Charles Manson and the Killing of Shorty Shea."

David said...

Kraut,

Look to the right on the main page. There is a link to Deb's book.

Matthew said...

Charles Manson was a human but he was also a pimp,an opportunist and a narcissist. However, think that giving him the title of devil, bogeyman, monster etc. gives him way too much credit. With the mix of the times and the violence of the crimes caused such fear in people that he was elevated to a non-human evil monster when he was really just a fucked up human. For me it's the ability of the perpetrators of the crimes to buy into his bullshit to the point where they go from kind humans to killing machines that fascinates me. He is the least fascinating for me.

Matthew said...

Charles Manson was a human but he was also a pimp,an opportunist and a narcissist. However, think that giving him the title of devil, bogeyman, monster etc. gives him way too much credit. With the mix of the times and the violence of the crimes caused such fear in people that he was elevated to a non-human evil monster when he was really just a fucked up human. For me it's the ability of the perpetrators of the crimes to buy into his bullshit to the point where they go from kind humans to killing machines that fascinates me. He is the least fascinating for me.

Diana said...

Manson was all human all the time. A damaged, evil, perverted human.

For a good account of what it was like to be a naive 14 year old who encounters the pre-murder Manson, read Dianne Lake's book. Although I think she becomes a bit, shall we say, evasive with respect to the time around the TLB murders, her description of what it was like to be a kid in the hippie era was spot on.

It's almost unbelievable, but it happened.

Gorodish said...

Matthew typed:

For me it's the ability of the perpetrators of the crimes to buy into his bullshit to the point where they go from kind humans to killing machines that fascinates me. He is the least fascinating for me.

100% in agreement here.

prefeteria said...

Is the book promoting the notion that Manson was rehabilitated, no longer a threat to society, and therefore should have been paroled?

Monica said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Monica said...

Hi Pref, 
My opinion is that the book is promoting that he never was a threat to society. There was little talk of parole. By the time the book was written, he had resigned himself to dying in his cell. 

Matthew, I agree with you and I think that is why we pick apart this story so much. However, I do not find the family dudes' stories (except Clem's) nearly as fascinating as Manson's. 

Diana, I agree about Snake's book. I can see how Manson would have been a happy alternative to her family. What a sad story!

But how do we explain LVH? I have recently read "The Long Prison Journey of LVH" and although many of the readers of this blog tend to not like it, I found it incredibly fascinating. LVH was smart, popular, came from a traditional family, etc. Then after her Manson experience, she thought she was gonna grow wings and fly right out of the jail. I know some people who had a similar upbringing as LVH and were a part of the LA crowd then. They ran for the hills around the Manson tribe (and think my fascination with this case is bonkers). 

Maybe Bugliosi was right...something untangible in the killers made them go bad.

Monica said...

Here's something off topic to ponder...one of my friends just said that people like me (and you?) in to the Manson stuff are like a cult after the fact with no Manson left. Huh.

Robert C said...

Keep in mind most his age and older didn't put up with his BS. Manson learned during his early prison years you don't con a con (or worse) and he got his ass kicked many times over it. In fact he had a lifetime in prison to learn all this below radar power and control stuff so even an idiot could be an efficient and effective predator by the time Manson got out.

Encountering 'innocents' and those not familiar with the criminal element -- easy pickings. I don't find it difficult at all to understand how his prison 'sociology' classes enabled ensnaring of young malcontents and throwaways. However, even in Dianne's book I sense she still has a bit of love for Charlie as do many others in the Family, even the ones that ratted on him. This is the part I don't understand -- Lake for example gets a spontaneous unlubricated sodomizing (rape) by an angry Manson and still has some feelings for him ?

Manson never had the human quality of remorse so from an early time was a predatory animal. One of the most dangerous creatures on earth.

Doug said...

Karlene Faith was one of my Profs at Simon Fraser University (SFU) and, I ran in similar circles as her daughter (early Vancouver punk rock crowd).

Karlene was awesome. We did talk about LVH a little bit. She did say that she would have no problem with LVH living with (tenant) or, near her...and, this was early to mid-80s

Doug said...

We're a bunch of oddballs...and, possibly members of those who are drawn to find out why/what drives people to behave in such bewildering, savage and extreme ways...the psychology of such heinous crimes...and, a smaller % who are attracted to the heinous acts alone...is that "cult" behaviour? One may read it that way.

AustinAnn74 said...

Manson human? Maybe in the world of a carnival freak show.

Matthew said...

I was also thinking about how human Charlie was portrayed in Lynette's book. I tend to believe her in that it is how she saw things. However, as far as how she seemed oblivious to HS and TLB and was still in the hippy woods nymph mode,taking care of George, I'm not as sure. But it really is a well written book.

Ajerseydevil said...

The last book on Manson I read Manson exposed claims he was sexually abused for a couple of year's when in San Quinton bye a member of the Arian brotherhood

Ebay has listed Susan Atkins
& Squeaky's yearbooks for $1000 each there's also a necklace supposedly found on the bus at Barker ranch in 1970 also at a cool Thousand bucks asking price
I'll probably read the book you wrote about it's always interesting to read a different perspective

Ajerseydevil said...

The last book on Manson I read Manson exposed claims he was sexually abused for a couple of year's when in San Quinton bye a member of the Arian brotherhood

Ebay has listed Susan Atkins
& Squeaky's yearbooks for $1000 each there's also a necklace supposedly found on the bus at Barker ranch in 1970 also at a cool Thousand bucks asking price
I'll probably read the book you wrote about it's always interesting to read a different perspective

orwhut said...

I wonder how they'll authenticate where that necklace was found.

AstroCreep said...

I tend to see both sides of this argument. Yes Manson has human qualities at some point but the larger more philosophical question is: when does a monster become a monster? Clearly, with hindsight, you can’t go backwards and now talk about Charlie as though he was some great guy. But at some point the line got crossed and there’s no going back to normal human.

Dan S said...

Yeah, i got a bridge Charlie used to own for sale too

Dan S said...

He was always of the selfish entitled mindset. The criminal mind for sure

Dan S said...

All us true crime buffs are serial killers at heart. Not

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Milly James said...

Jimi Hendrix died 18 September 1970.

kraut_iznota_knotsy said...

Hey THANKS to those who directed me to Deb S book (w/Ed Colin). It looks good and I am going to buy it. Much thanks to Deb as always for her excellent posts here.
Buying it per instructions on this site: https://www.facebook.com/Charles-Manson-and-the-Killing-of-Shorty-Shea-673701689797293/

Thanks again, everyone. :)

Fiddy 8 said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hw-JP37q62Q&t=826s Check out 8:29 for nazi use of meth. If the murders happend today, society would totally accept meth as the major component (still finding CM culpable for manipulating tweakers), but back then LSD was THE evil and sexy drug that everyone associated with hippies.

Diana said...

I wasn't the slightest interested in this until I saw Once Upon A Time...

I had mixed feelings about the movie but that's not relevant. What's relevant is that it got me interested.

I'm old enough to remember the murders and guess what, I don't. I'm from the East Coast & I was involved in summer fun... watched the moon landings and tried to go to Woodstock but parents wouldn't let me. (A bit too young for that.) Of course the whole "Manson family" became a part of lore but my point is, I can't remember it.

But I can't get enough of it now. I've been reading as much as I can. It's fascinating.

Dianne's book hit me because... I feel it could have been me. There but for fortune. Any adrift kid in that environment was vulnerable. "Charlie" was a charmer. How could Dianne know?

I took MANSON & ME out of the Kindle Library, tried it for five minutes, and removed it from my library. It repulsed me. Poorly written attempted exculpation of a pervert. She can't even spell Terry Melcher's name properly!

Just a few random thoughts.

Monica said...

Fiddy... I think meth was a huge part of these killings. There was a great post on it a while back.

I'm reading Manson Exposed now...ok but a lot if facts are wrong.

Matthew...I ate up Lynne's book and am oddly interested that she still sees the good in it all.

Diane, I bet you have good stories to tell. I am an East Coast girl too (kinda). Loved Once Upon A Time....have seen it three times now just to catch the red herrings.

Millie. What could have been had he lived eh?!?!

Diana said...

Monica,

It's Diana with an "a".

I thought I had stories until I read Dianne's book. This girl saw it ALL even w/out the Family story to tell. The Hog Farm, concerts, Kim Fowley, Monterey Pop - and now she's a quiet Christian grandma... unbelievable. But it happened.

There was one part of her book that I thought she wasn't quite honest, not that she was dishonest but I think she is still processing plus there are legal issues. I have to go back in the book to verify but at the Barker Ranch, after she's learned about the murders, she says she wanted to get away - but she didn't. She even hid from a raid. I realize that Barker was way isolated and to run off was to risk one's life, but she was still so brainwashed she hid from the cops even when she wanted to leave.

Kitty Lutesinger did run off - and then she returned. This shows how sunk into it and confused the girls were.

Monica said...

So true Diana. Kitty and Paul too! Kept coming back for more. In the book Dianne also claimed (after all these years) she heard a full confession from Katie, Leslie etc under a tree one day. If that had happened, Bug would have been all over it but it wasn't presented in the trial at all. I also know from some of the long term Manson Bloggers that she can be iffy with her fact recollection. BUT that doesn't discount the majority of her story and, as you say, confusion and brainwashing. I have no doubt she is still processing.

John said...

One more comment: The "Human" side of Manson? It must be a very short book.

Zelda Formaldehyde said...

Stimson's soft-sell of Charlie in his book was enough for me.

Diana said...

One thing that the pro-Manson people all have in common: a low IQ.

They are all dumb AF.

Stimson has the brains of a mountain gorilla without the charm.

Like I said, I'm fairly new to this, but one thing I copped to early on: Shorty was hip to Manson, didn't take sh*t, didn't buy his line, and the whole business about how he was a snitch (not that there's anything wrong w/that is an excuse. Manson just hated anyone who didn't look up to him as the Messiah.

Diana said...

One thing about Dianne's book that set my hair on fire was how she pointed out that Manson tried to win followers at the Fountain cult.

Not enough has been made of the similarity of "Helter Skelter" to Krishna Venta's apocalyptic rantings. They are almost completely the same.

Matthew said...

Diana said:One thing that the pro-Manson people all have in common: a low IQ.

They are all dumb AF.

Stimson has the brains of a mountain gorilla without the charm

I am certainly not promanson, whatever that means, but I don't think it is fair to call any group of people that see things differently than you to be dumb. This is common these days in politics. If you are republican, all democrats are dumb. If you are democrat all republicans are dumb. Stimson is an intelligent man and expresses his own opinions well. He also has inside history with members of the family that make his opinions interesting whether you agree or not. The mountain gorilla is a highly intelligent animal and a peaceful one so not sure where you were going with that. This is not an aggressive response, just my opinion and I am not a moron because I disagree with you.

Diana said...

Matthew,

You're right, I spoke hastily and I made generalizations that don't stand up.

Lynette, for example - I HATE to admit this, but she is a damn good writer. Yes. She is IMO a deluded fool (no apologies for saying that) but she is highly intelligent and a good writer.

(Looks like she inherited those high IQ genes from her engineer father, maybe?)

About Stimson, I don't know so I shouldn't have popped off.

No defense, but in my six whole weeks of Family mania I've run across a fair amount of Manson excusers, and the majority don't strike me as being very bright. But that's no reason to generalize about all of them.

Also: even I have toyed around with the idea that maybe the killing was all Tex's doing. Maybe the whole HS theory is bogus and Manson was just a punk, a pimp, and a con-man, but no murderer. I eventually relinquished this idea but I did toy around with it.

Peace.

grimtraveller said...

Diana said...

About Stimson, I don't know so I shouldn't have popped off

Diana, I don't know if you've read through the archives on this site {it's well worth it, believe me ~ there's great debates, tremendously keen minds, molar chewing ideas and a host of unique characters} but George put in some great time and was both a scholar and a gent. Nothing daft about him ~ and that's coming from someone who disagreed with him a lot.

Monica said...

I think meth was a huge part of these killings

I don't. Not when I think about how deliberate and calm Tex was at some pretty crucial stages, or how Susan {if she actually spoke the truth in much of this} bottled it at various points. I sometimes think that both would {or in Susan's case would have liked} like those in the know to put more emphasis on meth.

I ate up Lynne's book and am oddly interested that she still sees the good in it all

What fascinates me about her book is how much she corroborates HS and the stories that trickled out over the years about Charlie and the Family but tries to spin them in a good light. And also I found really interesting her admission that she basically didn't know anything about the relationships that Charlie had with the other females, which for me, renders many of her observations and thoughts pretty null and void.
The biggest surprise though, was her getting pregnant with Charlie as the Dad.

What could have been had he lived eh?!?!

I think he would have fizzled out and become bland and boring. He stood out in a rock setting but there's only so far he could have gone in a jazzier setting and blandness and boringity happened to many fine players as the 70s wore on.

Diana said...

@grimtraveller,

I'll try to give Stimson a try but I'm simply unsympathetic to his POV and that's not gonna change.

Please understand that for my own reasons, I need to take this stuff in small doses. I can well understand Dianne Lake's desire to put a lock on all of it - not that I have her level of stories to tell, but many of us who survived that era and who changed our tune feel a lot of regret and shame. I simply could not face any of this until I saw OUaT. It was very triggering - in a good

"The biggest surprise though, was her getting pregnant with Charlie as the Dad."

Did she miscarry? I wasn't aware that Fromme had children.

Robert C said...

Diana said: " … but many of us who survived that era and who changed our tune feel a lot of regret and shame. "

I haven't met anyone in my age group who lived through that period who felt that way at all. It was an extremely dynamic era, I wouldn't have missed it for anything, with a great long lead-in from the 50's. I don't think anyone can blame a historic time to ameliorate their (actions, clinical depression ?).

Humanitarian Manson -- two mutually exclusive words.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Helter Skelter is full of lies. Here are five sources that'll tear it to shreds:

https://www.amazon.com/Crucified-Railroading-Charles-Manson-Michael/dp/B0056AFCCU

https://www.swlaw.edu/sites/default/files/2017-04/2%20Eye%20of%20the%20Beholder.pdf

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07K6J273Q/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07WSH43WG/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

https://www.scribd.com/document/242582528/191423054-the-Manson-Myth-Debunking-Helter-Skelter-and-Exposing-Lies

Diana said...

"I haven't met anyone in my age group who lived through that period who felt that way at all."

You and I had different experiences and run in different circles.

Do not attempt to invalidate MY perceptions, and I won't do the same to you.

You're welcome.

Diana said...

I thought Chaos was an interesting data dump with a lot of useful stuff in it, but in no way does it prove that HS was "full of lies." At best it proves that the trial didn't tell the whole truth.

But no trial ever does.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Chaos ain’t the only book I posted. Bugliosi used corrupt methods to secure a conviction against Manson.

Vera Dreiser said...

Yeah, what does CHAOS tell us? That stuff about the Susan Atkins lawyer switch? Big deal, what difference did that make? Who cares?!

AstroCreep said...

DOO,

I’m going to see what I can find by way of audio book and give these a listen. I’m curious as to what ‘evidence’ is presented that you’ve taken as gospel and feel is credible enough to say what you say.

I’m not trying to start an argument here so let’s keep this civil- my basic argument against ANY sources (such as what you’ve provided as ‘evidence’ here) is that if they were that compelling, people wouldn’t obviously still be in jail. If innocence is truly proven or evidence of malpractice, then they would have been freed.

Given they’re still in jail is MY evidence that the sources you’ve provided aren’t legitimate enough to free those in jail.

All that said, I have no blind allegiance to Bugs or the ‘establishment’... I just buy into their case and to date, there’s too much corroborated information to change my opinion.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Bugs used the same tactics in the Manson trial that Johnnie Cochran used to get OJ acquitted. Yet, Johnnie takes way more flak than the monster that is Vincent Bugliosi.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

If Manson was such a racist, why were Juan Flynn and Juanita Wildebush members of his family?

David said...

Tom O’Neill certainly did not discredit the Helter Skelter motive (and I am not a proponent of the motive). While I found his book engaging and at times very interesting it also is replete with factual errors. I identified ten in the first 20 pages where he recaps the crimes stating as his source Bugliosi’s book and the trial transcript. Either his editor dropped the ball or he should have more carefully checked his research. While many on those pages are minor and few had any impact on his basic themes it did take him down a few notches on the “Deb Quality Research Scale” especially when a simple search of Cielodrive.com (which he acknowledges) should have revealed at least two of the errors.

He also either displays some rather poor reporting or selective reporting depending on whether he intentionally failed to mention facts he knew or simply was unaware of them.

Far from undermining HS, at one point where he unsuccessfully (his own conclusion) attempts to connect the LSD/Speed research of David and Roger Smith and Manson to MKUltra he actually illuminates a possible explanation for one of the biggest problems with the HS motive: how could anyone actually believe that stuff.

Monica said...

Astrocreep said:
If innocence is truly proven or evidence of malpractice, then they would have been freed. 

Yes.

My question to the BUG slammers is what exactly would you have done differently? He won.

Mon Durphy said...

Or Gypsy

Diana said...

What was good about CHAOS:

1. He discovered that the warrant for the Spahn Ranch raid on 8/16 was in order;
2. That Terry Melcher according to two witnesses visited Spahn AND Barker after the murders, was seen tripping, on his knees, begging Manson to forgive him;
3. Related to #1, that parole officer was employed by both Nat Institutes of Mental Health and the Haight-Ashbury Free Clinic;
4. That Manson repeatedly violated parole in full view of the law.

WTF?????

What was bad: almost everything else.

But the good outweighed the bad, IMO

Matthew said...

Blogger Destroyer of Opinions said...

If Manson was such a racist, why were Juan Flynn and Juanita Wildebush members of his family?

Wasn't his racism directed mainly towards black people?

Vera Dreiser said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Destroyer of Opinions said...

Michael White and Carrie Leonetti have certainly debunked the HS motive, though.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Leonetti ain’t even a “Manson apologist”, as she concluded that Manson belonged in a psychiatric ward, rather than prison.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Monica,
Wouldn’t you say the same thing about JOHNNIE COCHRAN in the OJ case?

David said...

Diana said: "That Terry Melcher according to two witnesses visited Spahn AND Barker after the murders, was seen tripping, on his knees, begging Manson to forgive him;"

That was very interesting but it also one of those times I questioned his 'reporting'. I do not recall him ever asking VB why the cross out meant in his notes. I know what it means to me but I'm not VB. When I do that it is because the witness backs away from the statement, like this: "I saw XY and Z" but later says "well, I didn't actually see that, I heard it from Bill". Then I go and try to find Bill.

Vera Dreiser said...

Ok, Matt's deleting all my comments because he's a HUGE PUSSY, but anyway, David, you just said:

I know what it means to me but I'm not VB. When I do that it is because the witness backs away from the statement, like this: "I saw XY and Z" but later says "well, I didn't actually see that, I heard it from Bill". Then I go and try to find Bill.

Vera: VB is still is obligated to share that contradictory information with the defense, and the corroborating second and third examples ONeal found in CHAOS, but if you were a real criminal law attorney you'd know that. Dumb head.

Diana said...

"Diana said: "That Terry Melcher according to two witnesses visited Spahn AND Barker after the murders, was seen tripping, on his knees, begging Manson to forgive him;"

That was very interesting but it also one of those times I questioned his 'reporting'. I do not recall him ever asking VB why the cross out meant in his notes"

I took the book out of the library & don't have it with me so I can't comment to that. You're right - witnesses can recant. But these were two witnesses - Watkins and DeCarlo. O'Neill reported Kay as being astonished by the documents, which he photocopied.

He also photocopied the Spahn Ranch raid warrant, which he claims was perfectly in order.

Not to mention, and this is something that occurred to me even years ago, before I became interested in all of this: Manson violated parole repeatedly, and he was treated with kid gloves.

It really doesn't take a conspiracy theorist to think two things: 1) Manson was way more connected in the Laurel/Topanga Canyon music scene than anyone wants to admit, so they blame it all on poor dead deluded Wilson and something I think is waaaayyyy more interesting than that, and all the MKULTRA bullshit: he was being monitored by Roger Smith for an NIMH study. They just let this petty criminal go about his merry business because he never seemed violent, and they wanted to watch him for whatever "scientific" benefit he provided.

Diana said...

The Carrie Leonetti article was trash. Life's too short to go into all of its inaccuracies. Suffice it to say that the first two grafs posit theories that no one ever did, and if she wants to claim that Manson was schizophrenic, she shouldn't quote the Emmons books as authoritative, because that person is a figment of Emmons' imagination. And not schiz.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

It’s much more accurate than Helter Skelter. But then again, what isn’t?

Diana said...

"Wasn't his racism directed mainly towards black people?"

Yup.

A lot of white nationalists are crazy about Asian women.

That said, I don't think Manson was a Klan-type racist. His racism was mostly abstract and political. And at the time, in 1969, a black insurrection seemed quite plausible. It wasn't, but that's not how things seemed.

None of this is at all a justification of HS. Just saying.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Manson did predict that blacks would keep rioting, but that ain’t the same as saying that he’d commit murders, pin them on blacks, and try to incite a race riot.

The HS theory would be MUCH MORE credible if Manson planned to kill police officers and blame it on blacks.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Bugliosi’s theory makes Johnnie Cochran’s “LAPD framing OJ” theory look plausible. But Cochran got his client off, didn’t he?

Diana said...

"Diana, yeah, and that information about the prosecution illegally planting one of their own as Susan Atkins' defense attorney before the Family was even identified as suspects was pure shit! Who cares?!"

That was a good find, too.

Look, Bugliosi was a state employee doing the state's bidding.

I frankly don't give a shit that he cut a few corners to put these creeps in the slammer.

We wouldn't be talking about these crimes if it weren't for Sharon Tate; nor would the Manson gang have been treated the way they were if they had just killed the LaBiancas, Shorty, and Hinman. They wormed their way into some powerful, money-making circles and they got "special treatment."

JMO.

Monica said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Destroyer of Opinions said...

Monica, Bugliosi had no ethics and integrity. His tactics to win a case were no different than Cochran’s.

Diana said...

Thank you, Monica. Since I'm a natural dilletante (both a blessing & a curse), I won't be here forever, but it's nice to come across a mostly non-crazy Family source. Accent on the word mostly.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

What do people think about Michael White’s “Crucified: The Railroading of Charles Manson”?

Robert C said...

Diana/SAG/Mon said: " … Do not attempt to invalidate MY perceptions, and I won't do the same to you.

You're welcome. "

You just told me who and what you really are.

Thankyou.

grimtraveller said...

Destroyer of Opinions said...

What do people think about Michael White’s “Crucified: The Railroading of Charles Manson”?

It's a good book.
But White's premise is faulty. The opening 3 lines in the book are "Charles Manson is not guilty ! He did not kill anyone. He did not order anyone killed, nor did he control anyone." The next 2 are "The real criminal in the Tate-LaBianca murder trial was a prosecutor named Vincent Bugliosi. Mr Bugliosi, under the guise of righteousness, "railroaded" Charles Manson for personal gain." In the next paragraph he says that he is informed but the reader is ignorant, with no idea about the case. In my opinion, that's a rather daft approach to take because there are people that are informed. I'm certainly informed and I was fairly well informed when I read the book over 3 days in the bath in December of 2015. I wasn't nearly as well informed or thought out as I am now but having read a series of books that year, including William Zamora's, Robert Hendrickson's and George Stimson's tomes, as well as getting stuck into debates on 4 sites, I was able to pick off his arguments with little trouble, though some of them are good and make a lot of sense.
However, White demonstrates real ignorance of the law of California and keeps emphasizing Charlie didn't kill anyone and wasn't there at the murders. I almost feel sorry for him because some of his kingpin points are contradicted.....by Charlie himself. Manson doesn't deny being part of the Shorty killing. George Stimson tells us in his ever so pro ~ Charlie book that Charlie told Tex, and the others to "do something" to get Bobby out of jail and that the perps were for the most part selected because they owed Charlie. So much for not ordering, controlling and telling people what to do. Charlie speaks in George's book of there being no meth usage on "my ranch" {his words}. He talks of people doing as he says if they were going to stay on the ranch.
Michael White should have actually chatted with Charlie before writing that book.
He's also way off on man things. For example, he says the promises made to Susan Atkins were reneged on by Bugliosi and Evelle Younger. But he totally leaves out that by her recanting, no deal was left in place. He's like many Charlie apologists ~ very good at pointing out the west side of the mountain while totally ignoring the east. Some of it is truly sad and I felt sorry for Charlie in parts. It was also amusing, the number of times he asked Kanarek for a copy of "Helter Skelter." White wrote the book in 1999. I wonder how much of it he'd still swing with today.
It's still a good book though. But in my opinion, it doesn't even come close to leaving a mark on "Helter Skelter," much less tearing it to shreds and neither does "Eye of the beholder" or "The Manson myth." George Stimson didn't, Nicholas Shreck's 900+ pages didn't, AC Fisher Aldag didn't, Robert Hendrickson's 500+ page "Death to pigs" didn't, Squeaky's "Reflexion" didn't, Carla Livsey's "The Manson women" didn't. The 3 documentaries that came out over the last 18 or so months that all claimed to bust HS did no such thing.
You appeared suddenly on the scene like a whirlwind, fists up, punching hard and shouting, in effect, that anyone that didn't disbelieve HS couldn't think for themselves.
I've yet to hear an original thought from you yet though. Pretty much everything you've said, I've heard from others. It's rather ironic that the one that claims others aren't thinking for themselves should point to other sources to prove a point. It is through very much thinking for myself that I can say why I believe what I believe.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

GrimTraveller, as tempting as it is to condemn you, I won’t. But didn’t Crucified prove that Bugliosi only used Helter Skelter because he felt the copycat theory wouldn’t sway the jury to convict Charlie?

Destroyer of Opinions said...

I just can’t stand it when people who believe the HS theory ridicule all that disagree with them and claim to be smarter than they. As if they know more than anti-Bugliosi people.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Grim, are you taking your pro-HS position because you believe the other theories are all inadequate?

Destroyer of Opinions said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Destroyer of Opinions said...

I can’t blame Michael White for being harsh and condescending toward people who believe the HS theory.

It also ain’t just the Helter Skelter theory that made me respond with “good riddance to bad rubbish” when Vincent Bugliosi died. The man reeked of hypocrisy, narcissism, and dishonesty. How can you admire a man like that?

grimtraveller said...

Diana said...

I'll try to give Stimson a try but I'm simply unsympathetic to his POV and that's not gonna change

One doesn't have to be sympathetic to a particular person's viewpoint in order to find them interesting, intelligent or stimulating.

for my own reasons, I need to take this stuff in small doses

Sensible.

Did she miscarry? I wasn't aware that Fromme had children

She doesn't. I guess I was shocked because it just came out of the blue. It was one of those things I don't ever recall even hearing rumours of.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Bugliosi used corrupt methods to secure a conviction against Manson

Well, don't leave us dangling, enumerate them and back up your assertions with substance, not opinion.

Bugs used the same tactics in the Manson trial that Johnnie Cochran used to get OJ acquitted

I'm all ears. The floor is yours.

If Manson was such a racist, why were Juan Flynn and Juanita Wildebush members of his family?

The definitions of racist are: "a person who shows or feels discrimination or prejudice against people of other races [on the basis of their race], or who believes that a particular race is superior to another."
Much of the human race are racist. Racism isn't isolated to any particular group of people. But if you've not read "Goodbye, Helter Skelter" you should. Charlie, up to when he was talking with George Stimson believed in the superiority of the White race. That made him a racist. The funny thing is that there can be instances where racism isn't even necessarily a negative.
To answer your question directly, Juan, Juanita {and Gypsy} were white.

The HS theory would be MUCH MORE credible if Manson planned to kill police officers and blame it on blacks

Not really. It's an endless fascination for me that so many people that discount what was attributed to Manson do so on the basis of their own logic rather than his. It matters not one jot what you might find more logical, credible or sensible for the simple reason that you're not Charles Manson.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Grimtraveller,
This post (which contains an LA Times article) shows how much integrity Bugliosi had: liesaboutcharlesmanson.blogspot.com/2011/05/transcripts-indicate-bugliosi-lied-in.html?m=0

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Something tells me grim will ignore the link I posted because it’s “beneath” him.

grimtraveller said...

Destroyer of Opinions said...

GrimTraveller, as tempting as it is to condemn you, I won’t

Hey, condemn away if you must. I'm a big lad. I can take it. Every so often it's par for the course.

But didn’t Crucified prove that Bugliosi only used Helter Skelter because he felt the copycat theory wouldn’t sway the jury to convict Charlie?

Not in the slightest particular. "Crucified" didn't actually prove anything. It posited rather than proved.

I just can’t stand it when people who believe the HS theory ridicule all that disagree with them and claim to be smarter than they. As if they know more than anti-Bugliosi people

Hang on mate, that's exactly what you do. You set out your stall from the first time you posted on June 7th declaring how ridiculous HS was. By the 8th you were stating that "the people who do believe that theory are sheeple." You followed this up a few days later with "If somebody believes the Helter Skelter theory, it makes me question their willingness to think for themselves."
Physician, heal thyself.

are you taking your pro-HS position because you believe the other theories are all inadequate?

Every single one of the other theories has appeared in an attempt to do away with HS. None of them have actually appeared in and of themselves. And the very existence of so many theories is each of the theories own greatest weakness if you ask me. I personally have long found it fascinating that three of Charlie's most vocal supporters in recent times, {George Stimson, Nicholas Shreck and AC Fisher Aldag}, people that spent years talking with him, all have different theories/explanations of what went down. If you think for yourself, I would imagine that even if you think Bugliosi was a complete turkey trotter, that would give you pause.
For what it's worth, something I noticed a long time ago was that whatever came from the Family had been mooted by someone else first of all. Even the copycat. That first came from Aaron Stovitz. Drugs came from the Police and press. The Mafia hit came from the Police. And forgive me for thinking for myself here, but if the copycat and much of the stuff that came out in the penalty phase were actually true, why not bring it out as your defence ? Imagine Linda being grilled by the defence having put on such a show and shown to be a murdering swine. The very placement of their defence {after they've already been convicted !} indicates that it was something of an afterthought.
Incidentally, I don't believe it was HS and only HS. That's not been my position. I think the prosecution got the multiple mix of motives right. The copycat however, is full of holes. There was a time when I gave it part credence. Then I really thought about it.

It also ain’t just the Helter Skelter theory that made me respond with “good riddance to bad rubbish” when Vincent Bugliosi died. The man reeked of hypocrisy, narcissism, and dishonesty. How can you admire a man like that?

Some of my best friends are hypocrites. Some of the people I love dearly are narcicists. Many of the people that I've hung with, worked with, played with, lived with, argued with and are related to have been dishonest at some point in their lives, as have I. My only interest in Bugliosi pertains to this case. I'm on record a number of times as stating that I had very little time for his TV appearences, frankly they often irritated me and I'm not interested in any of his books. But I think, though flawed, "Helter Skelter" is a great book. And I was never anti~Manson at all. I think this whole saga embodies many tragedies on a number of levels. But Bugliosi did a good job {it was after all, his job} in presenting a case to a jury that enabled them to put away 5 murderers. And then he wrote about it and gave us a great window and insight into legal machinations that most of us may otherwise have remained ignorant of.

grimtraveller said...

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Something tells me grim will ignore the link I posted because it’s “beneath” him

Something tells me that grim is going to bed as it's 7.07am and I've been up all night ! Something should also point out to you that "Goodbye Helter Skelter" and "Death to pigs" are among my favourite books ~ neither of which is remotely pro ~ HS, prosecution or Bugliosi. Actually, most of the books I have on the subject have a healthy dose of Bugliosi dislike.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

grim, do you like your friends BECAUSE they are narcissistic and hypocritical, or have you stayed friends with them in spite of those traits?

Fact is, EVERYBODY is CAPABLE of being/looking narcissistic, hypocritical, and dishonest, but do most of us act on those capabilities? Good, decent human beings NEVER do.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Too bad Johnnie Cochran didn't represent Charlie. It would've been a battle of lies between him and Bugliosi.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

I can't believe some people praise Bugliosi and condemn Johnnie. Hypocrisy at its finest.

Diana said...

grimtraveller: 43
Destroyer of Opinions: 0

(For those of you who don't get the allusion, I'm referring to the Patriots/Dolphins game.)

@grimtraveller,

Thanks for so patiently and logically analyzing the whole shebang and for pointing out the inconsistencies in the "revisionist" case.

"One doesn't have to be sympathetic to a particular person's viewpoint in order to find them interesting, intelligent or stimulating."

Absolutely, which is why I recommend CHAOS to all who are interested in this case. I hated the writing style, disagreed with the loony CIA-conspiracy stuff, but I admired his grit and think O'Neill came up with some devastating finds.

Stimson is a different kettle of fish, however, and I'm not sure I have the time to spare. I'm positive I could learn a few things but my time is limited.

I haven't read the paper version of HS yet, only the e-book. (I no longer buy books; I take everything from the library and I'm on the list for the actual, real book. I don't consider reading an e-book true reading, I'm old.)

So going from what I remember, Bugliosi deals with the whole issue of motive, the problems with Helter Skelter, the copycat stuff, head on. He explains that motive really wasn't necessary to prove guilt, it was just such an overwhelming part of Family life that it was necessary to prove THIS case. And yes, I get that conspiracy is difficult to prove, but with the accused practically proving conspiracy in the courtroom, was it, really?

Anyway, my point is, these objections are really red herrings brought up by people who just hate "the Bug Man." This reminds me of a lot of pseudo-controversies, which I have seen in reading Civil War forums. Many contributors are just there to spout off.

For example, I've seen arguments that go on for pages about Gettysburg, in which proponents of one side will say that the officers of the other side were basically morons. Well, no, they were not: they were actually excellent officers who were dealing with conditions that they had never seen, with inadequate resources, which is what war is.

Same goes for Bugliosi. At least give him credit for not being a moron. He was quite aware of the so-called copycat murder theory and the surface implausibility of HS. Instead these revisionists charge forth claiming that he simply dismissed them out of hand, or paid no attention to them.

About that copy-cat thing. It's always bothered me. The Hinman murder took place July 31. I'm willing to bet that, sad to say, it hardly merited a mention in a local paper. A copy-cat crime is one that inspires others to imitate based on notoriety. Thus a similar murder that took place a scant 10 days later would not be a copy-cat murder.

I think what people really mean is they wanted to spring Beausoleil by "proving" that the real killers were loose. It's a nitpick, but it bothers me.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Diana, is there a difference between Bugliosi’s tactics and Johnnie Cochran’s to sway a jury to favor their position?

Doug said...

My father ended up passing on 18 Sept 2019. 11+ months after suffering 2 massive strokes.

Tough as nails

AstroCreep said...

What’s your deal with OJ? Cochran was hired to secure an acquittal and he did. Was OJ guilty? I think he was but he wasn’t found guilty and therefore isn’t guilty. That doesn’t prove innocence.

Bugs secured a guilty verdict. He didn’t create anything. Everything he used to do so was on the record prior to him being assigned the case.

If Manson cared about his freedom more than he did about creating a circus, maybe he’d have not utilized Kanarek and wouldn’t have died in prison.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

It was, Astrocreep?

Destroyer of Opinions said...

We all know that whoever disagrees with Astrocreep is a fucking idiot.

Monica said...

DOO...I agree with AC. Unless you are Mario George Matrini III, the OJ/Cochran refs are getting a little tiresome. You have other smart things to say, don't you?

Destroyer of Opinions said...

I reference Cochran because many people say he lied to get OJ acquitted. Bugliosi did the same thing to get Manson convicted. I’ve got proof from LA Times that Bugliosi lied. And yet, Monica, you think Bugliosi was a man of integrity. If you think Bugliosi was a man of integrity, you don’t know what integrity means.

AstroCreep said...

Not at all. Presenting idiotic logic and/or no argument other than making homophobic remarks means your an idiot.

You continually draw a parallel to JC and the OJ case and tie that to Bugs. In reality, you should draw a parallel to Kanarek. Maybe Kanarek wasn’t willing to go that extra mile that JC was in order to win.

Maybe that’s your hang up.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Idiotic logic—like the logic that Bugliosi used?

AstroCreep said...

DOO, you’re saying you have proof that shows Bugs’ lie is what convicted Manson and gang?

WOW!

Rather than posting here and wasting precious time, you should call the news outlets so you can have everyone freed before they die in prison.

AstroCreep said...

DOO, the logic Bugs used netted 5 for the death penalty. It obviously worked.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

So did Cochran’s theory that LAPD framed OJ. That helped OJ go free, didn’t it?

Dan S said...

To Diana: it's the family imitating the BB murder to cast doubt that the real killer was caught there by showing BB to not be the real killer and get him out of jail. It's a get a brother out of jail copy cat not a traditional stranger inspired copy cat

Destroyer of Opinions said...

I don’t think too highly of Kanarek. I mean, Michael White didn’t.

AstroCreep said...

JC presented an argument of incompetence, contamination, and the straw that broke the camel’s back was the Mark Fuhrman tape. Had it not been for that tape, it would have been a lot harder for JC to create doubt.

Bugs talked to people that had previously made statements (long before his involvement) and pieced those together to show conspiracy. Helter Skelter wasn’t something Bugs fabricated. It existed before he was assigned the case.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

I could only find ONE article (from 1969) that supports the notion that Bugliosi didn’t invent the HS theory. All that article says is that Manson felt a race war was coming. Ain’t the same thing as somebody speculating that Manson HOPED to start a race war.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

I may be a Charles Manson apologist, but I don’t deny that he said deranged things that made him look guilty as fuck.

prefeteria said...

Destroyer, are you Michael White? I’d have to go back and read again but I recall Manson touching upon the elements of the Helter Skelter theory in the 1970 Rolling Stone article/interview.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

prefeteria, no I ain’t. But I’ve got no reason to doubt anything Michael White says.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Manson did talk about black riots back in the late 60s, but who didn’t? It was one of the main American talking points at the time.

Gorodish said...

prefeteria typed :

Destroyer, are you Michael White?

Destroyer of His Own Credibility typed :

prefeteria, no I ain’t.

Yes, you most likely ARE Michael White. I read that stupid "book" on a downloaded PDF several years ago and I somewhat remember the OJ trial dragged into it. Weren't you the guy that found a bunch of Kanarek's papers in some storage bin and suddenly fancied yourself an "expert" on TLB and wrote this wretched thing?

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Gorodish, admit it, you wish you could be a DESTROYER OF OPINIONS!

Gorodish said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gorodish said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gorodish said...

Destroyer of His Own Credibility typed:

Gorodish, admit it, you wish you could be a DESTROYER OF OPINIONS!

I have less than zero interest in such an endeavor. I'm sorry your "book" only sold 395 copies. Hopefully, you can recoup the storage bin money somehow. Have a nice life.

Diana said...

Guys,

I am not interested in feeding a troll, and I suggest you do the same.

@Dan,

"To Diana: it's the family imitating the BB murder to cast doubt that the real killer was caught there by showing BB to not be the real killer and get him out of jail. It's a get a brother out of jail copy cat not a traditional stranger inspired copy cat"

I explained in my original comment what my problem with the word "copy cat" is, but apparently I didn't make myself clear so here goes again.

A copy cat crime is a crime that is inspired by a famous, notorious, and heavily publicized crime.

The murder of Hinman, which occurred on July 31, was not famous, notorious, and heavily publicized. It was obscure and probably didn't make it to the newspapers or TV, which were the only news source we had in those days. No internet, remember.

How can a crime that no one knows about be copied? It can't.

My objection is simply one of nomenclature. I understand that they are saying that if they staged a crime that looked like the Hinman murder, the Man would say, "Oops, we got the wrong guy, let's let Bobby go."

I also understand that the Manson family wasn't known for sophistication and high cognitive functioning, and that THEY might have thought this would happen. Got that.

But it's not a "copy-cat" crime. That's all I'm saying. It would be a "we got the wrong guy, the real killer is out there" crime, but there's no short-hand way of saying that. (That's what happened with Garretson.)

Also, even if they use the phrase "copy-cat" they aren't saying they were innocent. They are loudly proclaiming their guilt, just saying that HS wasn't the motive.

The whole goal is to invalidate HS. And it fails on that account as well. Motives can be mixed. I do think that the TLB murdered were staged to look like the Hinman murder - in fact all of the murders were staged except for Shea's. Staged doesn't mean they were innocent. Staged means what it means: framed in a particular way to bring about a particular effect.

Bugliosi decided to go with HS because the "copy-cat" (which I use under protest) motive opened up a can of worms and for a jury you should keep it simple.

What was that can of worms? Well, I don't want to open up one, because I haven't yet puzzled this all out staging implies a certain amount of planning and thought, and that goes against the whole brainwashed zombie line.

And the revenge against Melcher thing had to be squelched, because... it led to powerful people in the Canyons who were not to be fouled with this pollution. The money-machine is all-powerful.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

If I WERE Michael White, I'd come here and constantly complain about the unfairness of the justice system and the fact that rich people get much more of a fair shake than people of Charles Manson's class standing. But check my history and see if I've done that.

Dan S said...

We should change that particular potential motive to "get a brother out of jail".

Diana said...

That sounds good to me.

"opinion, presented him as a human being."

Yes. I'm not aware of one book that dehumanizes Manson. The fake news media, sure, but they do that to everyone, and frankly, carving a swastika into one's forehead doesn't do much for optics.

I thought that the Guinn bio was fairly good at that. In fact I avoided it because I thought it would make me sympathize with Charlie the neglected, abused kid. And it did. Not the man. But the kid - yes. I felt very sorry for him.

grimtraveller said...

Destroyer of Opinions said...

grim will ignore the link I posted because it’s “beneath” him

I've read that site ad nauseum over the last 4 or so years and in my opinion, while there a couple of things in there that offer good food for thought, overall it's a really poor site with nothing that can't actually be garnered in greater detail elsewhere.

This post (which contains an LA Times article) shows how much integrity Bugliosi had: liesaboutcharlesmanson.blogspot.com/2011/05/transcripts-indicate-bugliosi-lied-in

The LA Times article you refer to doesn't prove a thing. It doesn't even demonstrate how much or how little integrity Bugliosi has. All it does is report that one of Bugliosi's foes reckons that he lied about leaking something to the press. As I've pointed out to an old friend of mine on this site on a few pertinent occasions, nothing brought as evidence would be strong enough to convict anyone of perjury, especially what Steven Kay said. His deposition, such as it was, is pretty much gossip and I wouldn't be surprised if he regrets opening his mouth.
Not only that, but the "foe" in the headline is on record in the same article as saying that he was not accusing Bugliosi of anything himself.
You know, I didn't even realize until I read Herman Tubick's "Inside the Manson jury" that the William Farr at the centre of the controversy actually worked for the DA's office. It wasn't until later that he became a reporter for the Times {the article does mention the latter bit}. That puts a somewhat different spin on matters.
But back to your assertions, no, the link does not show what little integrity Bugliosi had. And when the case eventually came up, it was thrown out.
By the way, a site called "Lies about Charles manson" is hardly going to present a fair or balanced picture of Vincent Bugliosi is it ?

I just can’t stand it when people who believe the HS theory ridicule all that disagree with them and claim to be smarter than they

Can you show me where I have ridiculed anyone that doesn't believe any part of the HS theory ? As a point of information, the overwhelming majority of contributors to TLB related sites I've been part of do not go along with it. And a huge number of them are people that I respect enormously and have enjoyed engaging, debating and yeah, arguing, with and learning from. I won't for a minute deny that I've been known to be pretty sarcastic at times, but if you look at people that I've engaged in that type of banter with, you'll note very quickly that it is always punters that fire all guns blazing, from the hip and who are not backward in coming forward with insults and ridicule themselves. And it has always been them that has begun the festivities. I'm a gent !

grimtraveller said...

Diana said...

My objection is simply one of nomenclature

I understand that. I must admit, in many instances, I'm also a stickler for the correct phraseology. I also recognize however, that sometimes, the thoughts/words/phrases of the majority, no matter how grammatically incorrect or definitionally inept, are what people understand a certain thing to be. As a phrase, the "copycat" isn't really concerned with what is good English. It's just become a term that encapsulates "get a brother out of jail" and uses one word instead of a mouthful of six !
Either way, I don't buy it. The funny thing is though, that if you look deeply into it {taking the Stimson end of things}, it shows Charlie as being just as controlling as HS does. And if you take the Emmons or Atkins {either her 1977 or 21st century version} wing of it, it shows Charlie to be guilty of murder.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

If I WERE Michael White, I'd come here and constantly complain about the unfairness of the justice system and the fact that rich people get much more of a fair shake than people of Charles Manson's class standing

I do have a certain amount of sympatico with that view, not only in the US of A, in many if not most countries on the planet. I've personally experienced it myself.
However, I would point out to you in particular {and Michael White} that:
i. Charlie shot a man {Lotsapoppa}, told Bugliosi that he had meant to kill him and till the day he died, was never even charged, let alone tried, for it.
ii. Manson told the judge in the Shea trial that he was guilty and had chopped off Shorty's head and it was the Judge that refused to enter his plea.
iii. Manson blatantly lied when testifying in his own trial for the TLB murders. He said the Police arrested Bobby Beausoleil for something he did not do, when he absolutely knew Bobby had murdered Gary.
iv. Also bear in mind that between December '69 and around March '70, when Manson was going on and on to the press about how the system was conspiring to do him in, he wasn't aware that Lotsapoppa wasn't actually dead. So he believed him to be dead....yet he was saying things to the press that belied this because no one outside his circle was aware of his involvement tin Lotsapoppa's "death."
So your point has another side to the mountain that is certainly worth a view......

Diana said...

Right, whatever you call it, it doesn't exculpate Manson. They are just saying (in effect), "hey, that wasn't the motive, this was!" and they are just admitting their guilt further. All of them.

As for one standard for the rich, and another for the poor, tell me something I don't know, Destroyer of Opinions.

But it goes both ways. Manson is a big celebrity; he continues to be a money-maker. He got what he wanted out of life, eternal fame and followers. Never had to work a day in his life. Didn't mind going back to jail. Jail was Daddy.

About Charlie the human being: I actually found the scene at the end of the book where Manson seeks Bugliosi out, congratulates him on a job well done, and confesses he doesn't mind going back to jail, touching and sad. I suppose you'll say Bugliosi lied about that. (It was well done in the 1976 TV version. I haven't seen the 2004 one yet.)

Now, when you consider all the 7.7 billion souls who live now, most in wretched conditions, the "injustice" done to Charles Manson is peanuts, and I question both the sanity and the morals of those who waste so much time on it.

beauders said...

Doug, sorry for your loss, I lost my mother in December to Alzheimer's and it sucks. She was so strong then that all faded away.
It does not surprise me that Fromme had a miscarriage. I heard somewhere, think it was Hendrickson who said the Manson women had a lot of miscarriages and the fetus's where buried at Spahn Ranch.

Destroyer of Opinions said...

Diane, one major injustice is that Charles has got a horrific reputation, much worse than people who've got obscene, narcissistic, sheeple, and/or hypocritical opinions. People with those types of opinions are much worse people than Charlie could EVER BE! They deserve to be ridiculed, condemned, dehumanized, and ostracized for their opinions!

Diana said...

@Destroyer of Opinions,

It's DianA.

And from now on, I'm simply ignoring your troll comments. You are a broken record with nothing to contribute, as far as I'm concerned.

" People with those types of opinions are much worse people than Charlie could EVER BE! "

WTF? I don't moderate this forum but if I did I'd remove your worthless comments. Say whatever you want, I'm not responding further.

@grimtraveller,

I don't have the same intense knowledge of this case that you do, nor will I ever. The facts of the case are known. I can't speak for others, but what interests me is this:

What the hell caused Charles Manson to become so crazed? Was it in his genes, his upbringing, or the times? I suspect a combination of all three. Of the three, the most interesting, to me, is "the times." Because I lived through them.

What was it about the 60s that made Manson, Manson? Before he was let out in 1967, he showed no signs of becoming a violent criminal. The only violent thing he ever did was, supposedly, rape another kid in jail, and that was routine. (Also, I have my doubts that such a small, skinny boy could rape another boy. It was probably consensual. But I digress.)

Mainly he was a petty criminal who did stupid things that he knew would get him nabbed. He didn't want to be released in 1967. Yet he was. And the rest is history.

What happened? That's what I'd like to know.

AstroCreep said...

Diana,

I think the same process is how people are radicalized thru the use of religion. Sure ISIL, AQ, and the Taliban have been around for a while but had never threatened our country until September 11th. The kids have lost hope, life isn’t turning out the way it should have, they’re victims, and become violent, and they want to stand for something.

My perspective of Charlie is that he felt life owed him something and was on track (or so he thought) with his music. When that bottomed out, so did he. The factual timeline leading up to the crimes certainly suggest that to be an accurate assessment.

Matthew said...

Astrocreep said:
My perspective of Charlie is that he felt life owed him something and was on track (or so he thought) with his music. When that bottomed out.

This is what I have always believed was the one and only motive for CM. However, he threw other motives around to different family members depending on which would work for them. Pat was HS. Leslie was acceptance in the inner circle and Bobby copy cat, Tex was lots of drugs and Linda and Susan was to see how crazy you can be. He knew what would press who's buttons. In my opinion, getting back at Terry Melcher and the rich people that snubbed him was his one and only reason get the people in the Cielo Drive house. As far as the next night, just the fact that he could get these kids to slaughter innocent people on his command was too great a high to just let it go. I don't think that he actually believed that they would go through with it.

Diana said...

@Astro,

"I think the same process is how people are radicalized thru the use of religion."

That's the girls. I'm not really interested in them. How they got hooked is typical cult stuff. I'm interested in how Charles Milles Manson, petty but not violent criminal, low-level pimp, all around loser, got released into 1967 San Francisco and became Charles Manson, charismatic cult leader. And he did have charisma.

More and more I do agree that the murders were simply revenge for slights real or imagined. Not discounting HS as an overarching "philosophy," though.

AstroCreep said...

Diana-

I think Charlie was more violent than you think. He had a rape charge (or claim) for Danny DeCarlo’s wife while at Spahn. GTA, weapons, underaged girls, rape (multiple rapes), these are not petty crimes.

By the time the Lotsapoppa incident happened, the heat was on. That incident bridges the gap from felonious activity to murder.

Diana said...

AstroCreep;

I'm referring specifically to his pre-1967 rap sheet. It's not pretty but it's not especially violent.

He didn't even have a history of mistreating animals as a kid. Did he?

AstroCreep said...

I’m far from an expert on Charlie. Just thinking that his behavior became increasingly violent, he slapped around the girls, and his rejection by the establishment drew out his hatred towards society. He never really fit in except for when he was with Dennis Wilson and that was very brief.

Technically speaking, he personally didn’t ever rage kill anyone... not like Tex did. One shot into Lotsapoppa. One slice on Gary Hinman. Who knows what exactly with Shorty but it seems it was a group effort and he had a small part in that. I believe he didn’t have the rage in him that you typically see in serial killers because he really wasn’t one. There’s no proof Charlie ever killed anyone so his guilt lies within the conspiracy laws only.

Just my two cents.

grimtraveller said...

Diana said...

what interests me is this:

What the hell caused Charles Manson to become so crazed? Was it in his genes, his upbringing, or the times? I suspect a combination of all three


I agree; I'd also add a whole lot more. I'd also add that there are probably very few human beings, if any at all, that are immune from going down dark paths. Just by dint of the fact that we all acknowledge that we're not perfect, that we have flaws. The reality that one has not chosen to give in to an impulse that may lead to horrendous consequences shouldn't take away the possibility that we don't know exactly what sequence of events might combine to make us do so.
It's like a lot of things; until one is in specific situations that bring certain things to the fore, one will never know. For example, being a parent may just be that thing that conspires to bring out a person's innate selfishness that they had never exhibited before.

Of the three, the most interesting, to me, is "the times." Because I lived through them

The emergence of gurus and huge personality leaders in the 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s makes it tempting to say that the times had little to do with it as throughout recorded human history there have been people like him. But that would be naive, in my opinion. Being a fairly lawless kind of guy that had been shat upon by some of the very facets of supposedly responsible and nurturing authority within society, Charlie found, that unlike the previous decades, there were actually loads of people that felt similar to him {and their voices were beginning to be heard and they were infiltrating various mainstream channels previously vigourously controlled} and because he'd been in jail and seen the kind of hypocrisy first hand that wasn't supposed to happen in staright society, he had a seriously authentic voice that some people took notice of. For me, the greatest tragedy of Charles Manson is that he could have done and been so much that was positive and wonderful on a wider scale. The 60s was possibly the first modern decade that really enabled people from poor, dysfunctional or lousy backgrounds to bypass their beginnings and get somewhere glorious in life in large masses. Things happened in that decade that opened up doors in a way that was almost unforseeable at the start of that decade when he went back to jail to complete his sentence. Even Brits like Keith Richards and John Lennon who first went to the USA in '64 were gobsmacked by the changes that the country went through within just 2 years, by '66.

grimtraveller said...

2/2

Diana said...

What was it about the 60s that made Manson, Manson? Before he was let out in 1967, he showed no signs of becoming a violent criminal. The only violent thing he ever did was, supposedly, rape another kid in jail, and that was routine

That's almost a question that contains its own reply. "Before he was let out in 1967, he showed no signs of becoming a violent criminal. The only violent thing he ever did was, supposedly, rape another kid in jail, and that was routine."
Just looking at that speaks volumes. If rape was routine in jail and he spent 22 years out of 32 in some kind of institution where rape was routine......You know, it also occurs to me partly why Manson tended to minimize his actions. There is an order and hieracrchy among prisoners and as Khan in one episode of "Star Trek" put it when he grabbed Ms McGiver and started snogging her, "Some men may dare to take what they want !" There was no ask, in order to survive, you avoided confronting the big guns and took what advantages could be taken from those you perceived as weaker and psyched out those on your level. I remember a few years back, I read a sequence of books that all earmarked Charlie's sexual activities in jail. Among them were "The Garbage people," "Death to pigs," "My life with Charles Manson," "Witness to evil," "Taming the beast," "The Family" and "Myth and reality of an outlaw shaman." What was interesting was that apart from the last one, which put a different spin on it, the others in one way or another presented him as a prison punk who sold his arse in order to get along. Around the same time, I read that Rolling Stone interview in which he talks about this and his almost reluctant adoption of that way of looking at sex. But 22 years of being in that kind of world, and then having gotten out and then married and have his wife disappear with their child when he was back inside, one can see the embers smouldering. On the outside, there was little incentive to conform with society's rules and much of the youth and young of the times were abandoning these too. So it strikes me as no surprise that Charlie's violence would surface every now and again. What's interesting is not so much that it came to the fore, but who it came to the fore with.
His women.


I have my doubts that such a small, skinny boy could rape another boy. It was probably consensual

I dare say that much of it probably was consensual. But don't forget, the rape wasn't the only violence in institutions in his younger days. He was written up for 3 serious sexual offences not long after the rape and was actually moved from one institution to another because of it. A 1952 report on him stated that he had "assaultive tendencies." Diane Lake, Stephanie Schram, Mary Brunner, Kitty Lutesinger, Pat Krenwinkel, Sherry Cooper and a host of others would probably back up that report. Squeaky and Sandy would too, if they didn't spin it by saying that when Charlie hit them, they deserved it.

grimtraveller said...

3/3

Diana said...

What happened? That's what I'd like to know

Well, it was a combination of a number of things working together at different strengths at different times. LSD and Dean Moorehouse didn't exactly help either. Moorehouse had a lot to answer for in a curious way. Firstly, he was the first person that Charlie was able to completely space out and alter with acid. When one considers that he came to Charlie intent on perpetrating some serious physical damage and ended up leaving the ministry, divorcing his wife, overlooking his daughter hooking up with Charlie & the troupe and trying to convince people that Charlie was some kind of Christ avatar, well, tell me that wouldn't alter some aspect of Charlie's head. It seemed to have confirmed Charlie's own acid conflation with Jesus {and later, as things turned darker, the devil}, something that wasn't unusual for a tripper. Moorehouse also turned Tex onto acid and had much to do with him taking up Charles Manson.

Diana said...

@grimtraveller,

A lot to chew on.

Two responses: not that you imputed I did, but I never meant to minimize the seriousness of rape, in an institution or out. just want to make that totally clear.

And this: when I said Manson wasn't particularly violent, I mean that his pre-1967 record didn't include assault, violent home invasions, domestic violence, etc. Look at Mike Tyson's juvenile record. He freely admits he roamed the streets and mugged people, beat them, and took pleasure in it. It was eating lunch. Manson wasn't like that.

As for "assaultive," well, a lot of people might be in a jail. The girls who would back up that report were all small, slender females. He could not assert dominance over larger males in a prison, at least, not physically.

One of the better parts of Guinn's book was how he explained that Manson was very good at deflecting. (Dare I say, turning the other cheek?)

Interesting stuff about Moorehouse. Sounds like Charlie almost looked at him like a father figure....the father from hell.

grimtraveller said...

Diana said...

I never meant to minimize the seriousness of rape, in an institution or out

I didn't get that from you.
By the way, new as you may be to the blog, I really like your writing.

when I said Manson wasn't particularly violent, I mean that his pre-1967 record didn't include assault, violent home invasions, domestic violence, etc

This is true. I tend to look at the violence that occurred outside actual crimes. That gives as much of an insight into a person. He admitted to a probation psych doc that he used to beat his wife. He also drugged and raped a woman, all this in the 1950s. He used violence selectively.
What I find particularly interesting about his pre~'67 records and activities are the kind of things that were said of him, which appeared big time in his famous period, the manipulation, the cons, the need to be top dog, the anger and hostility, the lack of impulse control.....

Diana said...

"I really like your writing."

Thank you.

I've been reading the book you recommended, INSIDE THE MANSON JURY. I would not have come across it had it not been for your recommendation - thanks a million.

There is one part of the book where the author transcribes (I guess, from memory, but I trust his memory) a Manson diatribe. I gotta say, Manson was a lot of things - but he wasn't stupid. It's really tragic. He had a brain. Unfortunately, it was warped.

WRT to looking at his history of violence, I admit I don't know *all* the facts but I have read reports of therapists in the various institutions when he was young which state that there was still a flicker of humanity left (my paraphrasing). We'll never know....

WRT to domestic violence, not minimizing it, but (a) if he "admitted" to a psych he used to beat his wife, he knew it was wrong, felt some guilt and (b) it's astonishing how something so wrong was so accepted up until fairly recently. Still is, in some quarters.

grimtraveller said...

Diana said...

INSIDE THE MANSON JURY. I would not have come across it had it not been for your recommendation - thanks a million

I wouldn't have come across it had it not been for Beauders mentioning it so really, the credit is hers. I'm kind of surprised that, given it's a book that was written very close to the time of the trial and by an actual juror, that it's not had more of a push or a write up on any of the blogs. Any insight we can glean from the jurors or their families, especially from at the time, at least in my opinion, is like gold dust ++ because it gives an important perspective that frankly, is virtually always missing from discussions about the Family, the murders and all the attendant packages.

Manson was a lot of things - but he wasn't stupid. It's really tragic. He had a brain

You know, I was thinking about that earlier. If you look at his supposedly warped interpretations of some of the Beatles songs on the White album, one would have to conclude that on 4 of the big 5 {Revolution 9, Piggies, Blackbird and HS} he was pretty damned accurate if one looks at what the authors went on to say about what those songs were about. HS was about the fall of the Roman empire ~ he picked up what he saw as America's fall and without even knowing what was in Paul McCartney's head, equated the establishment to the Romans. Piggies was pretty savage in its noting of the establishment/straight society and the observation that they needed some stringent action taken against them. Blackbird was aimed at African Americans and encouraging them to change their lot in the USA and Lennon said Rev 9 was revolution in sound form.
Whatever else one says about Manson, he was perceptive and picked up things from the Beatles that they can't deny were there.

I have read reports of therapists in the various institutions when he was young which state that there was still a flicker of humanity left

I think there was. I even think there was when he came out of prison in '67. I don't think it was his intention to live a criminal life, certainly not a career criminal life. I think he had genuine hopes of doing something with his music. Apparently, he'd written 80~90 songs by the May of 1966; if you don't count the songs the Beatles were working on during the "Revolver" sessions of April ~ June of that year that's more than all four Beatles together up to that point since being a recording band in '62, including unreleased stuff and demos and only about 5 less if you do include their entire '66 output !
I don't think he ever lost his humanity because there is more than one side to humanity and it ain't all pretty !

it's astonishing how something so wrong was so accepted up until fairly recently. Still is, in some quarters

Can't argue with that.
Not everything that has been discarded from "the old days" was bad but much of it was.

AstroCreep said...

Following suit and just ordered on Amazon- you’ve both inspired me (as well as Beauders) to go ahead and read it.

Last book I read was “High Hopes”- the prosecutor from the DeFeo family murders wrote a pretty epic summary of the case prior to the Amityville home being bought by the Lutz’s. Not related to Manson but a pretty great account of those crimes and subsequent trial.

Doug said...

Grim said, "HS was about the fall of the Roman empire."

And/or s playground slide...depending on which version Paul McCartney is dealing on that particular day...

grimtraveller said...

Doug said...

And/or playground slide...depending on which version Paul McCartney is dealing on that particular day...

The song itself isn't about a fairground ride. It uses the metaphor of the fairground ride to make whatever point McCartney was trying to make. It escaped everyone except Charlie ! Macca does a similar thing with a woman {the "you"} in "Got to get you into my life" which is actually about marijuana and George Harrison does likewise when he uses the theme of eating the box of chocolates as a metaphor for Eric Clapton's addictive/excessive mode of being in "Savoy Truffle."

Doug said...

Agree with you 100% here Grim. I guess what I was trying to get across was more of how McCartney feeds many interpretations and, has become a bit of a shit disturber and/or revisionist "Beatleologist" in his golden years. He really seems to relish his status as rock royalty.

How he plays 3.5hr shows without a break and, downing MAYBE 500ml of water during his set at his age is bloody amazing though. And, the plethora of landmark songs he plays is mind-blowing...but, he's definitely taking the piss or, manipulating the audience (and, reporter/interviewer) as he fancies as he is continuously interviewed.

McCartney sidebar #1 - a friend of mine was one of the assistant engineers during the McCartney/Costello sessions that spawned "Veronica." At one point McCartney had a musical idea and, was playing it/singing a skeletal lyric over and over while Costello was at first pacing back and forth but eventually walking to the part of the studio room that the two of them were working in - that was the very furthest point he could have possibly walked - away from Sir Paul...when, after around a dozen or more attempts at this "tune/idea" McCartney turns around and spots Elvis...wayyyyyy over in the corner...and says, "What do ya think of this one?"

To which Costello bellowed...in an exceptionally loud and dismissive tone, "It's fucking rubbish! It's a complete piece of shit Paul!"

To which an obviously shaken Macca (Not at all used to anyone not kissing his ass, let alone vehemently dismissing him) whimpered something resembling "Well, you're not going to speak to me like that...John used to tell at me and tell me my ideas were shit...but nobody yells at me anymore!"

Fortunately, the reconvened a few days later and, wrote "Veronica."

Moral of this story - Paul is fully aware of his status and, that he is revered, and, will freely soak up the "legend" of Sir Paul...massaging the historical "truth" as he wishes...to suit his own agenda (which he has freely and, deftly changed to suit the circumstances).

grimtraveller said...

In the mid 90s when "Anthology" came out I was a little non-plussed at their revisionist tendendencies. It came across even more strongly when I got the book in 2000. Ringo's revisionist reasons for walking out on the band during the White album sessions made me think "what is he playing at ?" And the idea mooted that they probably knew that the sessions for "Abbey Road" were going to be their last make no sense when one reads interviews from '69 and '70. These recordings that have recently surfaced {showing the Beats discussing future projects} which have many internet Beatleologists wetting underwear and foaming at the mouth are a laugh to me. I keep thinking, "What's the fuss about ?" Some of the stuff like "Teddy Boy," "Junk," "All things must pass" and others that ended up on some of the Beatles' early solo albums were initially mooted as Beatle songs. And they had a history of the songs on particular albums having been tried at sessions for earlier albums.
Macca's response to EC telling him his song was shit wasn't really out of character for any of the Beatles though. Although Lennon and Harrison were the bands' serial debunkers and critics after the split, during their time together, they too were very aware of their status. One story that always made me laugh was when Jeff Jarrat, an engineer at EMI, asked George to turn his amp down. George just looked at him and said "You don't talk to a Beatle like that !" and another time when one of the engineers told the band that they'd finally got one of the songs they were having trouble with right, Lennon told him "You're not talking to Ricky and the Red Streaks, you know !" He got really narky with Mick Jagger for some of the things Jagger was saying about the Beats. But his explanation was interesting; he said he could say tarty things about the Beatles as it was his {ex} band but Mick Jagger couldn't.
I do find Paul has been fairly consistent in his explanations of the meanings in and stories behind his songs though. But I also find that many from that generation are prone to exaggeration, embellishment and revisionism, particularly as they get older {and become increasingly respectable/statesman~ like !}.