Charles Manson, who for decades existed as an emblem of wide-eyed 60s idealism gone fatally wrong, died last week.
Within moments, leftist scribes rushed to disavow him and to insist he had nothing to do with leftism or the 1960s counterculture.
“Charles Manson Was Not a Product of the Counterculture,” claimed Baynard Woods against all evidence in a New York Times opinion piece:
Apart from the long hair and the casual sex, however, Mr. Manson, who spent much of his life in prison with a swastika carved into his head, had more in common ideologically with far-right groups like the John Birch Society than he did with the anarchic leftism of, say, the Yippies….The paranoid, racist and apocalyptic ramblings of Mr. Manson are the DNA of the reactionary alt-right.
As of this writing, Mr. Woods has not responded to my questions about when the John Birch Society prophesied a race war or, for that matter, even bothered to mention race. Thus I was unable to ask him a follow-up question about his feelings regarding this quote from Yippie leader Jerry Rubin:
I fell in love with Charlie Manson the first time I saw his cherub face and sparkling eyes on TV. His words and courage inspired us.
The increasingly desperate Newsweek—which, like most of what remains of the mainstream press, seems to exist only to defame Donald Trump and all his supporters as “Nazis”—immediately sought to link Manson to Trump. Last Monday they originally published a piece with the headline “How Murderer Charles Manson And Donald Trump Used Language To Gain Followers,” wherein female scribe Melissa Matthews interviewed a psychologist who shared the following rather obvious insight:
Our current president speaks in an emotional or affective way to large numbers of people in our country who feel a kind of alienation or disconnection from the government.
However, this time even Newsweek overplayed their hand by linking Manson to Trump. They removed the original title, changed it to “How Murderer Charles Manson Used Language To Gain Followers,” and plunged yet another dagger into their own credibility by appending a note that read, “An earlier version of this story did not meet Newsweek’s editorial standards and has been revised accordingly.”
So what remained of the piece alleged that charming people often use language to persuade others. Pulitzer-level stuff right there.
At VICE magazine—which at the moment appears to be on the verge of about 100,000 sexual harassment lawsuits, give or take a few—we are told that Manson was a “virulent racist” and that “If Charles Manson were alive and literate, he would be writing for Breitbart.”
The Huffington Post refers to the Manson Family as a “Far-Right…Cult.” It further alleges that both Charlie Manson and leaders of the modern Alt-Right such as Richard Spencer were ultimately seeking power, as if no one on the left ever cloaks their unquenchable thirst for power beneath bullshit phrases such as “equality” and “justice.”
Even in India they’re trying to shackle Manson to Donald Trump and the Alt-Right. An essay in The Hindu aggressively denies that Manson was in any way a product—and especially not the reductio ad absurdum—of the 1960s counterculture:
Manson had a well-documented hatred of Jewish people, African-Americans and women. Rather than the liberal counterculture movement of the 1960s, his bigoted philosophy bears a disturbing resemblance in some respects with the far-right or alt-right brand of neo-fascism that has mushroomed in certain pockets of U.S. politics recently.
Writing for Raw Story, 85-year-old hippie icon Paul Krassner blames imprisonment and Scientology—Manson for many years claimed to be a Scientologist—rather than the 60s counterculture for molding Manson’s psychology: “Manson was never really a hippie,” he writes.
Would anyone care to explain the fact that the Manson Family first took root in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district during 1967’s “Summer of Love”? What about all the orgies and long hair and LSD? Care to account for the communal living and dumpster-diving? How about the Manson Family’s rock-star aspirations and the fact that the Beach Boys covered one of Charlie’s songs? What about their vocal opposition to the Vietnam War, to “the establishment,” to “capitalist filth,” and all the inflamed rhetoric about “pigs”? What about the fact that Richard Nixon openly hated Charles Manson and vice-versa? How about Manson girl Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme’s failed 1975 assassination attempt on Nixon’s successor, Gerald Ford?
What about when John Lennon approvingly noted that Manson “took children in when nobody else would” and claimed that “I just think a lot of the things he says are true”? How about the fact that folksinger Phil Ochs and Jerry Rubin visited Manson in jail? How do you explain Bernadine Dohrn of the far-left murderous terrorist group Weather Underground—and later cosponsor of Barack Obama’s fledgling political career—describing the LaBianca murders in the following psychotically exultant terms?
First they killed those pigs, then they ate dinner in the same room with them, then they even shoved a fork into a victim’s stomach. Wild! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.
To claim that Charles Manson had nothing to do with the 1960s counterculture is like saying that the 100+ million killed under communist regimes had nothing to do with real communism. Anyone who isn’t blinded by ideology would easily realize that the Manson Family had far more in common with the Symbionese Liberation Army and the Weather Underground than they did with the haplessly and serially misrepresented John Birch Society.
As “evidence” that Manson was a Bircher back then and would have been a Breitbart writer now, they trot out Manson prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi’s “Helter Skelter” theory about the Tate/LaBianca murders, which occurred on two consecutive nights in August 1969. According to Bugliosi and a handful of Manson acolytes who were apparently gunning for lighter prison sentences, these murders were a deliberate attempt to frame Black Panthers and thus ignite a race war that whites would inevitably lose, only to be redeemed when blacks proved unable to govern themselves and the Manson Family—which by that point would have reproduced to 144,000 members strong after holing themselves away in a bottomless pit somewhere beneath Death Valley—would usher in a brave new all-white ethnostate where an irredeemably corrupt USA had once stood.