Showing posts with label Helter Skelter. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Helter Skelter. Show all posts

Monday, October 19, 2015

Lynyrd responds to Grim Traveller, talks "motive", and cuts through the bullshit.

Grim said:

“Obviously we're talking TLB as opposed to Hinman/Shea/{Crowe} but it seems that a consensus seems to lean towards HS being the thing that ties Charlie to TLB and if HS is discredited, the link is severed and thusly, the guilt. 

The Emmons book has been discredited by Manson as bullshit which has left him free to state that he didn't know about the copycat {even though Bugliosi says in HS that he admits he knew the murders were going to happen}. 

I find few people genuinely push the anger towards society or lack of a record contract angle, I've not heard anyone other than Bugliosi push the bloodlust angle and the drug hits or Frykowski raping Linda K scene tend to emphasize Tex rather than Charlie as does the Suzan LaBerge wanting her Mum dead scenario. The Mafia hit for the black book seems more a supposition than a bona fide theory that many are prepared to hang their hats on.

If you take George Stimson's line to it's logical conclusion, Charles Manson had nothing to do with anything regarding TLB. I can understand why so many seem to take that line.”

Lynyrd Responds:

There may be plenty of people who believe that successfully refuting Helter Skelter (i.e., "proving" another motive) equates to clearing Charlie of all culpability and guilt.

I don't believe it's quite that easy.

By the time the Cielo/Waverly murders rolled around, the kids were puppets and Manson was pulling the strings.

Regardless of the reason these numbskulls were at Cielo and Waverly, Manson was "directing traffic".

Even without the "HS" story, there are plenty of signposts which strongly suggest that Manson was in-charge of this murderous group.

When Manson shaved his head, the kids followed suit.
When Manson carved an "X", the kids followed suit.
The girls literally crawled across town, on their hands and knees.
The kids were willing to die in the gas chamber for Manson.
Lawyers and psychologists alike, have described the kids feverish devotion to Manson as extreme.
Lynn and Sandy devoted decades of their lives to Manson.

Manson told the girls to get a change of clothes.
Manson told them to do whatever Tex instructed.
Manson told them to leave something witchy.
Manson tied-up Leno Labianca.
Several people from the "Family" described Manson as the ringleader.
One of them stated (I believe it was Paul Watkins), that "nothing happened without Charlie's approval".

The list goes on and on...

It's obvious, that "Helter Skelter" was a great tool for Bugliosi.
There's no denying that fact.
Bugliosi's job of implicating Manson, would have been MUCH more difficult without "Helter Skelter" at his disposal.
In the end, without "HS", Bugliosi may have failed at proving Manson's guilt. (and yes, he was guilty)
I agree with all that.

To believe that Manson is "by default" innocent (without HS as the "proven motive") is a stretch.

And might I add:
No one has EVER "proven" an alternate motive (to everyone's satisfaction) anyway.
And believe me,  no one ever will.

The "consensus" means little to me.
And polls regarding “motive“ are worthless (beyond entertainment) , because “the majority” is often dead wrong.
And truth be told, I don't put a whole lot of stock into most of the "experts" and "authors" on this topic either.

A LONG time ago, TomG said:
"Think long, think wrong."

He was spot-on with that statement.

People have over-analyzed this shit to death.
The books just keep getting thicker... and they simply contain more loopholes to overcome.

Let me break it down in simple terms:

By the time the TLB murders took place, Charlie was a bitter motherfucker.
He was angry with society and life itself.

He manipulated these kids with several methods (one of them being HS), and when he had them thoroughly wrapped around his finger, he set them loose to do his bidding.

Not being a lawyer, Charlie believed he could never be charged with murder (without physically killing someone). He figured he could exact his revenge on society, and then, walk-away scot-free.

That's the whole fucking story in a nutshell.

There's nothing else to know. 

And yes, for those who don't think so, Manson was bitter.

Manson tells everyone out of the right side of his mouth, that he's happy and content.
But out of the left side of his mouth, he never lets anyone forget that he "never had a so-called life", as he always says.
He "never had a so-called childhood".
He tells society: "watch tv and drink your beer”. (as his song lyrics go)

Folks like to research (and entertain) elaborate motive theories for four reasons:

#1) It sells books and movies.

#2) It makes the researcher(s) feel important. 
      (I know, I was there myself for years)

#3) It makes the case, the study, and the discussion (of TLB) more interesting. If you take things at face value, there's really not much to talk about. 
      (And, we're back to #2).

#4) And finally, the folks who support Charles Manson invest their lives searching for a theory to exonerate him. (And, that's never going to happen). This is pretty much Katie's original point, and the discussion has come full circle.
This entire post is not directed at Grim Traveller personally or specifically. Grim’s comment was the catalyst that got me thinking (and writing) on this subject, and that’s why I chose to include his commentary as my jump-off point.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Was Helter Skelter “unreasonable”? Part 2: LSD/Psychedelics

To the acid enhanced mind, the philosophy and resulting “prophecies” of Helter Skelter do not necessarily appear nonsensical or even untrue. While many laugh at the apparent folly of living in underground cities, having shrunk in size to get into the hole in the desert, it is frequently overlooked how one of the effects of LSD is the distortion of size & space. Charlie’s mate, ‘Phil’ Phillips recalls during his first acid trip “I wanted to get out of the bus and I looked out the window and the bus was about 10,000 feet up in the air and all I could see down there was the earth. So I changed my mind, I said ‘I don’t wanna get out of the bus.’

John Lennon on being in George Harrison’s bungalow during his first trip; “And then George’s house seemed to be, you know, just like a big seemed to float above his wall which was 18 foot, and I was driving it.”

Without a doubt, the use of psychedelic drugs like LSD, peyote, psilocybin and mescaline played a major role in opening up new and unusual doors for various family members to pass through, both before and during their time with Charlie. Writer Steve Turner in his book “Hungry for Heaven {Rock and roll and the search for redemption}” observes of LSD, “this was the Damascus Road tablet. People started out on trips as hard nosed materialists after a bit of fun and emerged with their egos ripped & mauled, unsure at first whether they’d seen God or were God. Whatever they’d been through, the world appeared many, such experiences were devastating. There was nothing in their background or education by which to interpret it. Literally overnight all their values & assumptions were challenged.”

It’s worth looking at some of the things said by or about some of the people of the period in relation to psychedelics, in particular LSD, if only to get some sense of the internal changes that young Westerners, contemporaries of the family, were experiencing.

George Harrison {The Beatles}: “It’s shattering because it’s as though someone suddenly wipes away all you were taught or brought up to believe as a child and says ‘that’s not it.’ You’ve gone so far, your thoughts have become so lofty and there’s no way of getting back.” 

For Timothy Leary, according to author Jay Stevens, his first trip “was the most shattering experience of his life.” Ralph Metzner said of Leary the following day, that he had the “blank look of someone who is seeing too much” and he kept blabbing on about the “plastic doll world & the total death of the self.” Stevens describes Leary as having “soared off the map” and Leary himself stated “from the date of this session, it was inevitable that we would leave Harvard, that we would leave American society.”

John Lennon {the Beatles} said that after his first trip “I was pretty stunned for a month or two.”

Jerry Garcia {the Grateful dead}: “It was the truth so you know it absolutely. You don’t have to wonder whether it is, it’s not in the form of an idea. It’s in the form of a complete freed me because I suddenly realised that my little attempt at having a straight life was really a fiction.”

Eric Clapton {Cream, Yardbirds}: “Part of the trap is that they open the doors to unreleased channels or rooms you hadn’t explored before or been allowed to open. It shook all your foundations. After the first couple of times you realised that everything you’d been using as guidelines up to that point was actually pretty flexible if you happened to question it, which acid obviously did”

Brian Wilson {Beach boys}: “Glen Campbell exclaimed ‘whew Brian ! What were you smoking when you wrote that [Good vibrations] ?’ A better question would’ve been ‘what was I dropping ?’”

Writer and former actress Thelma Moss says she became convinced of the unconscious because of LSD. During one trip she became a legless beggar in a desert sandstorm and heard a voice deep within her whispering “I died here...” She later said that “truth & lies & absurdity & grandeur were all mixed together in the psychedelic experience.” On another trip, she came to an abyss: “as I plummeted down, I felt myself growing smaller & smaller...I was becoming a child, a baby. I was a baby. I was not remembering being a baby. I was literally a baby. The conscious part of me realized I was experiencing the phenomena of age regression, familiar in hypnosis. But...though I had become a baby, I remained at the same time a grown woman lying on a couch. This was a double state of being.” A rather eye opening statement of hers: “I travelled deep into the buried regions of the mind. I discovered that in addition to being, consciously, a loving mother and respectable citizen, I was, unconsciously, a murderess, a pervert, a cannibal, a sadist and a masochist.”

Catherine Share: “LSD... completely destroyed my mind and made me like a little child for many years.”

Keith Richards {Rolling Stones}: “There’s not much you can really say about acid except God, what a trip ! Stepping off into this area was very uncertain, uncharted...the most amazing thing that I can remember on acid is watching birds fly – birds that kept flying in front of my face that weren’t actually there. I could almost see every wing movement. It was slowed down to the point where I could even say ‘I could do that !’ That’s why I understand the odd person jumping out of a window, because the whole notion of how it’s done is suddenly clear.” He adds, “it was the unknown with acid {you can’t really control it}. You didn’t know if you’d come back or not.”

Susan Atkins: “You’d have to understand what acid does to the mind in order to understand how a person can get confused behind drugs. And that would take a thesis, writing a book on what LSD can do to the mind.....I used to think that you came down off an acid trip after 12 hours; that’s not true. Every time you take LSD you [inaudible] expand, the moral fibre of your character which is put in you or when you grow up – everybody grows up with different morals according to their culture- when you take acid, your mind expands beyond these moral characteristics and your concepts of right & wrong so you step out beyond those bounds and when you step out beyond those bounds the imagination begins to take over and the imagination can be a very deceitful thing, it’s a fantasy. When you take acid, you go out beyond that and you think you’re coming back to where you started from originally. You don’t.  And every time you drop acid, you get a little bit further away from reality. And I took so much acid that I was what I would term ‘spaced’ and it took me many years to, what I term now, ‘re~enter’ and that was just through not having any acid and having to deal with reality every day.”

Adelle Davis: “The most lasting value of the drug experience appears to be a number of convictions, most of them religious in nature, which are so strong that it makes not one iota of difference whether anyone agrees with them or not.”

Phil Phillips {Jail friend of Charles Manson}: “So I walked up to the front of the bus where Charlie was and Charlie was facing to the front...and then he turned around and he looked just like the Devil. And I said ‘Man, we’re in Hell’ and he says ‘Yeah, ain’t it groovy !’........I couldn’t, like, believe what was happening to me. Everything was just changing before me....I couldn’t quite grasp what was happening, so we’re back to Charlie again and I said ‘what’s wrong with me, like, what’s happening to me ?’ And he says ‘this is insanity’ and I says ‘yeah, but you know, I wanna go back.’ He says ‘no, stay over here, it’s better.’ I thought I was over like in another world....”

Jay Stevens again, on Michael Hollingshead after mixing up a batch of LSD in confectioner’s sugar: “Unthinkingly, he licked the spoon. Now, 250 millionths of a gram, which is a healthy dose of LSD is little more than a speck, so you can imagine what happened to Hollingshead after his impulsive lick. He went roaring off to ‘the Other World’ where he experienced a rare but not unknown problem: he couldn’t come back completely. It was as though he was lost midway between this world and the other one, a little like a spirit who ends up in limbo because of improper burial.”

Charles Watson: “All your life you had been taught a certain way to think, a certain set of moral values, a certain perspective on the world, how it worked, what was real. Most of these things you never questioned; it never occurred to you that they were a framework in your head which you used to understand and organize the constant sensory perceptions and information and experience that were being poured into your brain. You didn't think about this framework because it wasn't what you thought about, it was the way you thought. But acid changed all this by letting you see your familiar little mental world as separate from the sensory data it arranged in such neat, conventional packages. Acid shattered the connection between raw experience and your handy pre~programmed responses and judgments and categories. Space and time melted in your vision to take new forms; common objects could become monsters or revelations of God.” 

Tony Visconti {Record producer of David Bowie & Marc Bolan, among others} on his acid excursions: “Sometimes a feeling of sheer terror came over me when I listened to what normally seemed harmless songs. I sometimes heard nefarious messages in the lyrics that conjured Bosch like images of hell.”

Robert Hendrickson {Film maker and author}:”LSD was developed for psychiatrists to administer to their most disturbed patients so that their deepest and darkest secrets could be brought to the surface and dealt with. But it’s use has always been considered a very dangerous method of dealing with otherwise ‘unreachable’ patients. Thus LSD was the perfect tool to be used for extracting years of ‘establishment’ programming from the minds of the Family. It was their method for obtaining an ‘ego death’ state of mind.”

Pete Townshend {The Who}: “the Owsley LSD trip on the aeroplane was the most disturbing experience I had ever had....I was on the verge of really losing my mind when I floated up to the ceiling, staying inside the airframe, and watched as everything changed in scale. Karen & Pete [himself] sat below me clutching onto each other....from my new vantage point the LSD trip was over. Everything was quiet and peaceful. I could see clearly now, my eyes focused, my senses realigned, yet I was completely disembodied.” 

Paul Watkins: “If acid does anything, it dissolves filters and buffers through which perceptions are ordinarily channelled. Three-dimensional physical reality is suddenly expanded. It puts you in direct contact with the energies all around you; nothing is dead or inanimate. It magnifies and expands your awareness in all directions at once ~ a grain of sand becomes a planet, a single voice becomes a symphony. If you resist it, the slightest fear can become a nightmare.....With these filters removed, you are no longer divorced from what you perceive. Knowing this makes it easier to understand how Charlie was able to get inside people's heads; there were no barriers to obstruct him; his energies moved in and out like the tide; he was everywhere at once. When he said, ‘No sense makes sense,’ and ‘I am you and you are me,’ he was, in terms of acid consciousness, absolutely correct.”

Grace Slick {Jefferson Airplane}: “Peyote, when boiled down to a concentrate, became a vehicle for going out of our minds. Or, in a more gentle interpretation, going from one plane of reality to another and another and another.....flying off the edge of a cliff or trying to embrace a moving vehicle is not an uncommon desire for psychedelic drug participants ~ not that people become suicidal, it’s just that in such a state anything seems possible.”

Lemmy {Motorhead}: “Real acid tripping in those days wasn’t all groovy, like, peaceful shit. The first trip I took lasted 18 hours and I couldn’t really see. All I saw were visions, not what was actually around me...all the time your mind felt like you were on a rollercoaster, sometimes slow at the approach to the top of each drop then wheeee ! Your teeth would kind of sizzle and if you started laughing, it was incredibly hard to stop. Acid is a dangerous drug if you’re complacent because it will wake your ass up ! If you were a little uneasy about yourself you would either be catalyzed by it or you wouldn’t show up again – you know, they’d take your tie and shoelaces away, and your belt and they’d put you in a room with no windows and a lot of soft walls. A lot of people I know went to the basket weavers’ hotel on acid.”

John Densmore {The Doors}: “I looked down over the frayed edge of the couch at the floor between us and saw a dark pit 1000 feet deep. I was a child again, afraid of the monsters outside my crib. Helplessly I began slipping off the couch into the bottomless abyss. I started getting scared and shouted to Grant that I was falling into the void.....the whole episode took only about 2 or 3 minutes but it seemed to last forever....acid had more of a kick than the stale wafer I swallowed on my first holy communion. LSD was a direct experience with God that I felt or at least something otherworldly or mystical. A couple of days after our trip, I still felt a little high, or at least different. I knew that the drug had worn off, that I was back into more or less my previous state of mind, but the sense that there were other ways of experiencing things was a powerful new awareness that is still present to this day [1990]. A crack had appeared in the facade of reality and I had peered through. Nothing had changed, yet everything had.” 

Charles Watson again: “What I remember most was...the ability to see into the pores of my skin. I still don’t know if what I saw in my skin was real or not. I do know that as a result, I became a vegetarian....I guess I liked the psychological effects. It was a way to escape what was really going on in my mind. Walls appeared to move, colours seemed stronger & more brilliant, with unusual patterns unfolding before my eyes. Flat objects seemed to stand out in 3 dimensions. My senses seemed more acute, one merging into another; for example music appeared as colours and colours seemed to have taste. Sometimes I even lost the normal feeling of boundaries between body and space.” 

Chris Squire {Yes}: “I had a rather nasty experience with some LSD and was in a bit of a haze for a few months...I stayed in my girlfriend’s apartment for quite a few months recovering: I didn’t take acid again after that. Having seen the end of the world I thought I’d gone far enough. I had taken it so many times when it was all fun and great and somehow or other I ended up in a Fulham hospital being interviewed by the cops. I didn’t know where I was. I was just smiling at them, thinking they weren’t there.” 

Bob Dylan: “When psychedelics happened, everything became irrelevant....people were deluded into thinking they were something that they weren’t, birds, fire hydrants, whatever.”

Dave Davies {The Kinks}: “As I started to inhale I felt as if there were two of me inhaling two separate cigarettes, each of ‘me’ experiencing two different and quite distinct effects. I was suddenly transported into another dimension or, I should say, dimensions. Before me I could see the universe and all it contained and I was rushing at the speed of light into what seemed the very heart of it. At first it was a phenomenal sensation of travelling very fast when, in fact, I was virtually motionless...a world of energy opened up to me, everything throbbing with relentless life force, breathing, vibrating in every molecule. This was the most incredible experience that had ever happened to me. Explosive, completely revealing, enlightening, illuminating and exciting, but strangely sad. I would lapse into profound moments of excruciating and unbearable sadness. Then I would suddenly be lifted into mystical realms of ecstacy, where answers to the riddles of life would be answered in an almost alien, ineffable language of mind energy. During the whole experience, I sensed a being above my head who talked me through it all. He told me he was my captain. He explained so much to me and helped me out of my tangled moments of confusion. He showed me in a scintillating, almost cinematic way that all I had ever learned would now have to be unlearned.”

Mick Fleetwood {Fleetwood Mac} recalls looking at Peter Green while tripping and seeing “him dead, a skeleton without flesh. I couldn’t even look at the others !”

Andy Summers {The Police}: “The room in front of me dissolves into an egg yolk rainbow of bright plastic colours and all that once had dimension and solidity becomes liquid....I start down a tunnel of intense kaleidoscopic imagery...Alice going down the tunnel into Wonderland and it’s scary and exhilarating as hell. One second I am surfing a rainbow, and the next moment - if I open my eyes – the room appears to be full of horrible little monkeys staring at me with burning eyes....I notice that the bin is like a box of incredible jewels. Old banana skins, cereal boxes and cigarette packets are dazzling jewels of incredible energy that appear to me now in either particle or wave form.” He later reflected that “clearly LSD is not for the fragile; it’s risky, it’s dangerous, a journey from which you may never return.”

Not for nothing did Grace Slick and friends plan to dose President Nixon with enough acid to get him “talking to paintings, watching walls melt and thinking he was turning into a bulldog.”

I make no apology for the number of varied experiences or thoughts concerning the psychedelic experience that have been related here. These aren’t even a drop in the ocean of the vast amount of what has been said or related about psychedelic drugs. We’ve barely touched on the bad trips or delusions that often came with the experience, such as Dave Davies communicating with alien beings for many years after or Sting being transported to his mother’s womb or a trench during WW1 {during an ayahuasca ‘trip’} or John Lennon and Vince Taylor {and indeed, Charles Manson} becoming convinced that they were Jesus Christ, let alone the large number of people that became acid casualties, many occurring in popular music {Syd Barrett, Roky Erikson, Skip Spence, Steve Took, Brian Jones, Vince Taylor, Victor Unitt, Dave Bixby, Gene Clark, Peter Green, Danny Kirwan, Mike Taylor, Brian Wilson, to name but a few}. Or the power of psychedelics to enhance suggestibility.

Many have wondered and continue to wonder how anyone could believe something as “ridiculous” as Helter Skelter. Not everyone did. But when you take into account just where a constant diet of psychedelics could take you {and most of the family were, in the main, trippers for at least a couple of years}, it’s not hard to see how some would have taken it in and believed it all the way. Then acted upon it......

Written by Grim Traveller

Thursday, May 28, 2015


Wow, just wow... what can I say?

After many years of researching, meeting folks involved (including law enforcement)... reading all the books I could get my hands on, visiting first hand the places involved, I had come to a conclusion and personal belief that the TLB murders were committed "To get a brother out of jail"....meaning of course, Bobby B....

When George Stimson's book came out last year "Goodbye Helter Skelter", I was in TLB heaven.....I thought finally, someone who knows the original Family members, knows Manson very very well, has verified what I always concluded was the motive!   So I was satisfied, finally!
Until today... first thing this morning 5:00 a.m. Pacific, I listen to, and read the transcript of Leslie's tape recording of her meeting with her attorney at the time, December 29, 1969 - Marvin Part, on

I'm confused --- honestly---- it wasn't only Paul Watkins that believed and told Bugliosi the same tale of Helter Skelter...

I'm thinking twice now.......maybe three times...not done yet...I know, I am nobody...but Lynyrd lets me post here, lol...

Monday, March 30, 2015

Helter Skelter

When I get to the bottom, I go back to the top of the slide.

It's a topic we’ve discussed 1000 times, and let’s face it, we’ll never reach a consensus.

Some folks believe the entire notion was fabricated by Vincent Bugliosi… and from there, he simply jammed it down everyone’s throat.

Other folks, like my good friend Kimchi, believe it all started with Paul Watkins and Brooks Poston.
As Kimchi said to me via email: “The HS thing appears to have emerged from the drug-fueled over-imagination of Paul Watkins and Brooks Poston“.

Some folks believe Charles Manson actually preached “HS” at the ranch… others don’t.

If it WAS preached at the ranch… did Manson actually believe it? Did the kids actually believe it?

This is a discussion that will never end… unless of course, a different motive is “solved” to everyone’s satisfaction. And trust me folks, that’s not gonna happen.


Manson utilized "Helter Skelter" as a means to an end.  Bugliosi also utilized "Helter Skelter" as a means to an end.  Both men fully understood that "Helter Skelter" was nothing more than a tall tale… but both men cultivated the story, because it was beneficial to them. It’s really that simple.

Below are my thoughts on “Helter Skelter” for what it’s worth. I’ll begin by discussing the significance of “HS” from Charles Manson’s perspective. I’ll then discuss the topic, as it pertains to Vincent Bugliosi. Lastly, I’ll conclude by explaining what this all means to us… the “researcher”.


Charlie: The diary of a two-bit entertainer, manipulator, opportunist, with a bitter streak.

Charlie had to keep the kids entertained. He used several methods to accomplish that goal. He sang, he played guitar, he told stories, he provided drugs, he provided sex… etc. etc.

A stand-up comic hones his act nightly, by utilizing audience feedback. If a joke goes over big (with the audience)… he continues to use that joke. In fact, if possible, he expands upon it. Conversely, if a joke bombs, he shit-cans it.

Charles Manson was an entertainer of sorts. He had to be. There were a boatload of places for a young kid to have fun in the 60’s… especially in California. If Manson was a boring old fart, they would have left.

My point:
I believe Manson had dozens of "raps" (i.e., stories) that he used to entertain the kids.  “HS” was simply one of them. One of dozens, in fact.

But for whatever the reason, the “HS story” caught-on with the kids. And Manson, (like any good entertainer), took note of this, and went with it.  He expanded upon the “act“. And somewhere along the line, Manson realized that he could use this “HS angle” to manipulate.

In a nutshell, that’s my honest opinion of “HS” (in regards to Charlie specifically). I think it probably started as nothing more than a “yarn” Charlie spun around the campfire (to entertain the kids), and it morphed into a convenient manipulation tool.

"HS" wasn't even very original. There were lots of folks talking "revolution" in California at that time.


Bugliosi: The diary of a success-driven man, who had no boundaries, when it came to winning.

If Bugliosi could have proven another motive, he would have.

I’m sure Bugliosi was presented with several possible motives (just as we are). And just like the rest of us, Bugliosi was unable to prove another motive (without having major loopholes to contend with). To quote Dilligaf from 2 years ago: “This case had more loose ends, than tassels on a rug”. 

You can't stand-up to prosecute multiple defendants simultaneously, and say to the jury:
"Truth be told, the motive could be this... this.... or this... and likely, two of those combined.  Heck, I'm not quite sure myself.  I’ll probably never know for sure. Thanks for your time".  That doesn't win a case.

For all its shortcomings, “HS” is a fairly tidy package, which is somewhat easy to present (compared to the other possible motive theories). To prove “drugs” as the motive (for instance), you have to string together several intricate timelines and details. There are loopholes that are hard to fill.

You don’t have to “prove” a whole lot of tiny “details” with “HS“. For the most part, you just have to convince the jury that #1) Manson is completely “bat-shit crazy“, and #2) he was in-charge of the other loonies. (i.e., bat-shit crazy enough to concoct and implement a really bizarre scheme). And let’s face it folks… with several butchered bodies left behind, AND the actions of Manson and his minions (inside the courtroom and out), those concepts weren't difficult to sell.

Bottom Line:
Bugliosi knew these folks were going to act crazy. And moreover, he knew these kids were going to paint Manson as their leader. Clang-Bang goes the iron door.

The "HS package" implicated Manson... the "big tuna". I’m sure that was a big selling point for Bugliosi. Bugliosi wanted Manson, and he wasn't going to present a case that excluded him.

Let me make one thing clear:
Bugliosi knew “HS” was bullshit.

Bugliosi was asked in an interview (right around the time Susan was petitioning for "compassionate release“): "Do you still believe the motive was “Helter Skelter“?

His response: "It seems the motives were several and disparate".

Also, years earlier, Bugliosi said on a talk show (paraphrasing):
“Charles Manson probably didn’t even believe the HS story himself.”

Bottom Line:
Bugliosi chose the one motive (he was presented with), that would implicate Manson AND be successful through the corroboration of the defendants themselves (and the “Family” collectively).

Lacking enough evidence to “sell” a more traditional motive, Bugliosi rolled his dice on “HS”… and thankfully for society, it worked. It worked, because Manson and his minions did all the work for him… as Bugliosi predicted they would.


Here’s a few reasons why I think “HS” was not the true motive:

The Manson men took care of Shorty Shea quite handily... and that had nothing to do with a race war (HS).

Manson and TJ left Bernard Crowe for dead, and that had nothing to do with a race war (HS), either.

The Manson men clearly demonstrated that they were capable of committing crimes (up to, and including murder) for practical reasons (i.e., reasons they perceived as practical). They didn't need "HS" as a motive.

In keeping, I don’t believe the Cielo and Waverly locations were chosen randomly either.

They went to Crowe's place intentionally. They went to Hinman's place intentionally. They killed Shorty Shea intentionally. Heck... you can add the Willetts to the list, if you want. None of those victims were complete random strangers. They knew Crowe... they knew Hinman... and they knew Shorty... and they knew where to find them.

These perpetrators went to locations intentionally... and killed people they knew... for a reason. (Albeit really shitty reasons... but for a “reason” nonetheless.) They weren't random serial killers, with a race war in mind. That wasn’t their MO.

HS was a piece of this puzzle... but, it wasn't the entire enchilada. Tex Watson, Charles Manson (and the "upper management" LOL) had their sights set on Cielo Drive and Waverly for reasons beyond HS.

HS was a manipulation tool Manson used (among many manipulation tools) to execute TLB, but it wasn't the underlying motive.

Here’s something else to chew on:

If Manson was completely sold on an Armageddon race war, why did he stop killing after just 48 hours?

I mean...
If Manson really believed that the end of the world (as we know it) was at hand... and moreover, he was going to emerge victorious... why would he throw-in the towel so quickly???

Ya gotta admit:
For an idea that Manson was supposed to be completely consumed with... he certainly gave-up pretty easily.


Friday, July 12, 2013

Charles Manson - A Chronicle of Death

"The Grump from Pahrump" Writes:
I recently came across this pre-Helter Skelter book from 1971. 
I had never heard of it before.
Charles Manson
A Chronicle of Death
By J.D. Russell
Copyright 1971, Apollo Books 

It is not worth getting excited about or trying to find it.  I'm just one of those that buys all the books on the subject.

It refers to Manson as "Charley Miller Manson".  The only thing that caught my eye was the following info on Voytek Frykowski:

"Not only was he known to be a heavy user of drugs, but there was strong evidence that he trafficked in them, also.  He has sinister dark connections with the underground drug world.

In the investigation that followed his murder, police found in his possessions a pilot's map with route markings between Southern California and Mexico.  When they tracked the pilot down they discovered that he had been flying in large  quantities of narcotics from Mexico, and had made a sizable delivery to Frykowski earlier in the week.  As  lusty a drug user as he was, it is inconceivable that this quantity of drugs could have been consumed by him and his mistress and friends alone."

I have always agreed with the words of Maury Terry:
"The name of the game was narcotics, not Helter Skelter".

Some Brief Thoughts About Motive, Helter Skelter, Bugliosi and RFK

While doing some liesurely pleasure reading by one of my favorite authors, Nelson DeMille, I came across a couple of tidbits that struck me as significant.

 "Money is motive. In fact, statistically it is the main motive in most crimes."

 And, "Motive is tricky and you can't ascribe a motive and then try to make it fit the crime."


So what does Mr. DeMille's prose mean to us TLB motive seekers? The first is fairly straight forward, and even Tex Watson has said that part of what they were to do at Tate was to get as much money as they could, even moving on to the other houses down the street.

So where does that leave LaBianca? I wonder.

To me in this case drugs and money are probably the same. Sure, they wanted some drugs to have to take for fun, but drugs can be proffered to buy favors or influence, and also can be sold for good cold cash.

"Helter Skelter" as Charlie's concept - no matter what anyone tells you - played a role in these nights of murder, even if it was used solely to motivate Tex and the girls to perform. Manson himself admits it was the name of the nightclub at Spahn's and was painted on the door there at the ranch. Hell, it was written in one of the victim's blood on their own refrigerator at the crime scene. And if the LAPD had only released that little bit of information, Charlie himself would have been in custody by August 12th. That's how closely Charlie had tied himself to Helter Skelter.

There are some who believe that Bugliosi is evil in part because he used the Helter Skelter theory to convict Charlie and the others when it is ludicrous to believe that could be the real motive. Oh, and then he wrote a book about it and has remained rich and famous ever since.

Whatever. I've said it before, and I will say it again now:
If Bugliosi could have proven any other motive, then he would have. As a juror, which is easier to believe: race war armageddon bottomless pit 144,000, or drug burn give me money or I will waste you bitch?

Bugliosi got the job done and served the citizens of Los Angeles well.

As for Bobby Kennedy, there has been some discussion of late, and so I am ready to call Urban Legend on the notion that Roman Polanski and Sharon Tate had dinner with RFK the evening of his assassination. Anytime this is mentioned I think most people get the idea in their head of a nice intimate dinner on the sofas in Bobby's hotel suite, when in fact it, would have been with many many other people, probably just a handshake and photo and that's about it. Anyway, while researching I came across Ed Sanders, that fug and of all people, and his research:

The Dinner

Apparently John Frankenheimer had planned an early dinner and invited some guests over. According to Robert Blair Kaiser’s book RFK Must Die the guest list included director Roman Polanski whose movie Rosemary’s Baby was selling a lot of tickets and his wife Sharon Tate. Other guests were future head of Disney Pictures Frank Wells and his wife Luanne, plus actress Anjanette Comer, nightclub owner Brian Morris, set designer Richard Sylbert, and a woman named Sarah Hudson maybe a pseudonym for someone who later married Sylbert.
(I e-mailed Mr. Kaiser a few years ago, and he replied that Frankenheimer himself told him about the guest list and the early meal at his Malibu house)

Perhaps Tate, Polanski and the others were invited for dinner but RFK had been too eager to get to the hotel so Frankenheimer quickly took him before, or just as, the guests arrived? Or, maybe they arrived, but Robert Kennedy had already departed for the Ambassador? Robert Kennedy, His Life, by Evan Thomas does not mention an early dinner in Malibu... Nor does RFK, a Candid Biography, by C. David Heymann.
(I recently wrote Roman Polanski in Paris seeking clarification but so far no reply)‎

So there's that.

And so back to motive: 
I think I will stick to keeping the statistics on my side and agree with Mr. DeMille.
Can't go wrong as Woodward and Bernstein found out from Deep Throat: "Follow the money."

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Highly illogical...

Mr. Poirot said:
"Without National Socialism you have no WWII. Without Helter Skelter you have no TLB murders".

I wouldn't take it that far, Poirot...

The Manson men took care of Shorty Shea quite handily... and that had nothing to do with a race war (HS).

Manson and TJ also left Bernard Crowe for dead, and that had nothing to do with a race war (HS), either.

The Manson men clearly demonstrated, that they were capable of committing crimes (up to, and including murder) for practical reasons (i.e., reasons they perceived as practical).
They didn't need "HS" as a motive.

Without HS, we may have had different perpetrators at Cielo and Waverly.
We probably would have had more men, and less misguided young girls.
Things may have "gone down" differently without "HS".
I'll give ya that much.

But to state beyond doubt, that these crimes WOULD NOT have occurred AT ALL without HS, is a stretch.
You can't know that for sure.

I'm sorry Poirot.
But, your statement is too broad.

HS was a piece of this puzzle... but, it wasn't the entire enchilada.
Tex Watson, Charles Manson (and the "upper management" LOL) had their sites set on Cielo Drive and Waverly, for reasons beyond HS.

HS was a manipulation tool Manson used (among many manipulation tools) to execute TLB, but it wasn't the underlying motive.


Part 2...

Poirot Responded:
LS you are boiling down HS as nothing but race war preachings which is an oversimplification of what HS was about. HS was more vast.

HS was mainly an ideological turbocharger that turns economy class hippies into drag strip commandos.

Helter Skelter was the rage and anger that spewed fron Charlie's skidzoid mind after he lost control of his mental faculties in late 68.

For example: if the Man jailed a few of Charlie's girls in 67 he didn't give a shit. If the Man did the same thing in 69 he would lash out at ALL society

Race is just one little aspect of HS.

Keep in mind I don't care if some folks don't agree with HS. Frankly I think it nicely encompasses the entire catastrophe.

Wow Poirot...

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree, on that one. LOL

My feeling:
Manson had several "raps" which he used to entertain the kids... and HS was simply one of them.
HS caught-on with the kids, and Manson went with it.
Somewhere along the line, Manson realized that he could use that angle to manipulate.
I've never viewed HS, as any more than that.
It was simply a manipulation tool.
(One of many, manipulation tools)

In fact, "HS" wasn't even very original.
There were lots of folks talking "revolution" in California at that time.

And, I certainly never believed that HS was a motive.

Do you really believe that Cielo and Waverly were chosen randomly?
I certainly don't.

They went to Crowe's place intentionally.
They went to Hinman's place intentionally.
They killed Shorty Shea intentionally.
(Heck... you can add the Willetts if you want).
None of those victims were complete random strangers.
They knew Crowe... they knew Hinman... and they knew Shorty... and they knew where to find them.

These perpetrators went to locations intentionally... and killed people they knew... for a reason.
Albeit really shitty reasons... but, reasons nonetheless.
They weren't random serial killers.

I've never believed for a moment, that Manson REALLY believed in HS.

Bugliosi himself, stated the same thing (on one of those reunion shows).
Bugliosi explained that Manson probably didn't believe in HS himself, but simply used it as a manipulation tool.

Several folks around the internet, try their darndest to dispel HS (as a motive) with weak logic.
I'll lend them a hand... 'cuz I'm that kinda guy. : )

Here's the biggest loophole to HS... and this is the question, that I would have posed to the prosecution, if I were Manson's defense attorney:

Why did Manson stop killing after 48 hours?

I mean...
If Manson really believed that the end of the world (as we know it) was at hand... and he was going to emerge victorious... why would he throw-in the towel so easily???

Ya gotta admit:
For an idea that Manson was supposedly consumed with... he certainly gave-up almost overnight.

If you look at this question in full context...  it doesn't make sense.

Full context:
After a year of preparation... stockpiling arms... hiding gasoline... looking for a hole... stationing look-outs... target practicing... building dune buggies for Armageddon.... Manson had a change of heart after just two nights???  That really doesn't make sense.
Fact is... Manson never really believed that stuff.
It was simply a ruse to keep the kids occupied and obedient.

I can see it now...

Charles Manson:
"Well... it's been a long two days... and I guess blackie doesn't want to cooperate.
Pass the bong... and drop your panties Sadie". LOL

I don't buy it.

Friday, September 9, 2011

I was reading Colonel’s blog (as I usually do), and found the Bugliosi/HS conversation on his second thread “Shrugs” particularly interesting.  It’s very, very good stuff!  Heck… those topics are essentially the “cruxt” of blogging this subject.

Anywho… I was going to post a couple boring documents today… and then decided… it would be more fun… to participate in the Bugliosi/HS topic. 
But… here’s the twist:  Rather than write-up an entire thread… I’m uploading my “notes” only… in “outline form”.  You folks fill-in the blanks!  Fill-in the blanks, or tear it apart… your choice.  As always, I could be completely full of shit… you decide!

My thoughts on the importance of Bugliosi today… in regards to solving the case/motive question:

1) Essentially, Manson convicted himself.

2) Bugliosi’s only, REAL, “claim to fame“ was successfully predicting how Manson would “play his cards”.  Bugliosi knew… if he gave Manson enough rope… Manson would hang himself.

 3) Bugliosi had little (if any) concrete evidence against Manson… so he designed a plan, which would allow Manson to convict himself… with his own personality… and demons.

Think of the movie “A few Good Men”.  Tom Cruise had little concrete evidence on Nicholson.  BUT… Cruise knew Nicholson was a big lion, who wanted to “roar”… and he painted him into that corner… and got a confession.  OK… a really cheesy analogy,…and not 100% “analogous” (LOL)… but, it’s a similar concept.
The actions of Manson and his “family”... were essentially a confession in action form… a confession that Manson was the leader.  Bugliosi predicted these idiots were going to “act-out” this dramatic real-life play.  Through his research, Bugliosi had already observed all the necessary elements in action, to make that prediction!
Bottom Line:
Bugliosi KNEW… Manson and company… were…. (at that time) in-capable of practicing ‘self-control”… as a means of winning the case for Manson.  These folks were FAR beyond switching gears.  “The family” was NOT going to portray Manson as a mere follower!  That wasn’t going to happen… and Bugliosi knew it.  That’s how Bugliosi won the case.

4) The jury did NOT convict Manson because they were sold on the Helter Skelter story.  The jury convicted Manson, because they were convinced Manson was in-charge, and thusly a conspirator to the murders.  Manson himself (and ‘the family“ collectively)… convinced the jury of those two facts… NOT Bugliosi.  The HS story (beyond Bugliosi‘s book) was secondary.

5) Bobby (blogger Bobby) made a great point.  OJ Simpson was a wife-beater, and a murderer… but there’s absolutely no denying… he was a great football player.  You have to separate personal life, from professional assessment.  Bill Clinton was a great president.  The economy was fabulous… jobs and overtime were everywhere.  Internationally, we were on good terms with the world.  His blowjobs from Monica… were between him and his wife… he and God.  But professionally… the man did a great job.  The presidency, is a job. 
A blowjob? LOL
If you hire a carpenter to build you a house…. and he’s does a spectacular… highly-skilled job,…at a fair price… do you care who he’s banging or stalking on his own time?  Does it make him a bad carpenter?

6) Bashing Bugliosi, although great fun… adds nothing towards finding the true motive.

7) Bugliosi was the prosecutor… he prosecuted.  Folks need to get over that simple fact. 
If you really want to bash an incompetent man (who completely screwed Manson)… take a good look at Kanarek.  Kanarek was Manson’s defense attorney for cripes sakes… and he NEVER put on a defense!!!  Now THAT guy committed a crime.  Sure, Bugliosi threw Kanarek a few compliments out of “professional courtesy” in the past… i.e., “Kanarek scored some points”, etc.  But C’mon… Kanarek sucked!

8) Starship said… “I have bigger fish to fry”… and that says it all.  At the end of the day, bashing Bugliosi is a fruitless endeavor.  It will never produce a real motive, or solve the case.  As Leary said: Bugliosi is not a hero or a villain… he did a job.

9) Why did Manson screw himself??
I’ve always believed it was pride.  Manson wasn’t going to eat a big piece of humble pie, and play by “the man’s” rules.  He wasn’t going to sit there like a deaf/mute… a nobody… a follower.  If Manson couldn’t win on his terms, he didn’t want to play.
MattP has also suggested: Manson was convinced… he couldn’t be convicted of murder, without actually killing.  Truth be told… it was likely heavy elements of both.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

My Two Cents on Bugliosi and the Helter Skelter Motive
Hello Friends!  Below is my personal opinion/summation of a topic (Bugliosi and HS), which got pretty heavy (and interesting) in the previous thread.  This is my “two cents” (on the subject) for what it’s worth… and not intended to be taken as “provable fact”.  I asked Mary, if I could use one of her comments (from an older thread) as a “springboard” for this discussion, and she agreed.  Thanks Mary!

Mary said:
>>>>"You cannot present 5 - 6 motives to a jury and expect them to follow the motives and all the evidence. You need to simplify the case"<<<<

Mary... You're right.
That's one major reason why Bugliosi presented "Helter Skelter".  There are 3 reasons.

Reason #1)
It's a tidy package, which is easy to present.
You can't stand-up to prosecute 4 defendants simultaneously (single-handedly), and say to the jury:
"Truth be told, the motive could be this... this.... or this... and likely, two of those combined.  Heck, I'm not quite sure myself.  I probably will never know... thanks for you time".  That doesn't win a case.

Reason #2)
The "HS package" implicated Manson... the "big tuna".
Bugliosi wanted Manson, and wasn’t going to use a motive which excluded him.

Reason #3)
Bugliosi needed a motive which everyone involved, would corroborate.
So… while interviewing, researching, and observing everyone… he searched for a “common thread”.
The one common thread Bugliosi found, was this:
Everyone’s words AND actions, echoed “Charlie is in-charge”.
That was the only “constant”, or “common thread” he could rely on... consistently, and across the board.  So… he utilized that one common thread, for all it was worth.

The HS "motive" painted Manson as the leader… in fact, completely “hinged” around that concept.  The words and actions of “the family” inside (and outside) the courthouse (as Bugliosi predicted), painted “Charlie” as leader… and cemented an otherwise weak case against Manson.

Bugliosi was asked in an interview (right around the time Susan was petitioning for "compassionate release“):
"Do you still believe the motive was “Helter Skelter“?
His response:
"It seems the motives were several and disparate".
Several and disparate motives folks.  That’s lawyer-talk for “No”.

There’s no doubt, Bugliosi was presented with several possible motives, just as we are.
I honestly believe, Bugliosi had no idea which motive was correct… and still has no idea today.  Honestly, how could he?  Realistically… it’s impossible.  He’d have to be an all-knowing deity, with a crystal ball.

Bugliosi chose the one motive (he was presented with), that would implicate Manson, AND be successful through the corroboration of the defendants themselves, and the “Family” collectively.
I say “presented with”, because it’s my humble opinion, that the Helter Skelter motive, was indeed “presented” to him (along with many others), and not “concocted” by him.
That portion is just my humble opinion.  Either way… “presented” or “concocted”, everything above, is why (I believe) Bugliosi used the HS motive.

Bottom line:
Bugliosi got the right folks, for the right crime, but based on the wrong motive… or, if nothing else, a motive he couldn’t possibly have been sure of.
Probably Not.

Bugliosi is smug.  He has an inflated ego the size of Texas.  He’s a strange and irritating sorta man, who uses bizarre words like “megolomaniac”.  Heck, he’s downright irritating at times.  Most importantly… his tactic of using a motive he couldn’t possibly have been 100% sure of (to effectively prosecute folks), was, and is, arguably un-ethical.
But, is he stupid?  My opinion is no… not at all.