Nixon resigns









August 9  must be one of those special dates in history.  Several popped out today as I leafted through the papers.

35 years ago today -August 9, 1974  President Richard Nixon resigned from office as a result of the Watergate Scandal. (and last week Watergate went begging.  No one even bid on it.)

40 years ago today-August 9, 1969  Helter Skelter  Actress Sharon Tate (wife of Roman Polanski) and her friends  were the victims of gruesome, violent, heinous, ritualistic murders in Tate’s home.  Tate was 8 and a half  months pregant.  The Charles Manson ‘family’ was responsible.  The nation was horrifed that human beings could commit these kinds of acts on each other.

Mansion has listened to the Beatles Helter Skelter in December 1968.  Read more about Mansion and the song.   Beatles’ Helter Skelter.

Helter skelter in a summer swelter.
The birds flew off with a fallout shelter,
Eight miles high and falling fast.
It landed foul on the grass.
The players tried for a forward pass,
With the jester on the sidelines in a cast.

From Bye Bye Miss American Pie

64 years ago today-August 9, 1945  An atomic bomb was dropped on Nagisaki, Japan, killing approximately 74,000 people.  Many more died later on from the effects of radiation.  The dropping of this second atomic bomb led to the surrender of Japan thus ending WWII.  More than 5000 Japanese marked this solemn occassion in Peace Park in Nagasaki. (picture omitted because of technical difficulties.)

I am sure I have omitted other important August 9ths.  I certainly would not call it a lucky day.  While all of these August 9’s have come and gone, how do each of them impact us today?  Has there been historical fall out from which we will never escape?   How much does music influence us as a society?  How much does it influence our crime rate? 


25 Thoughts to “August 9th –Not Just Your Ordinary Dog Day”

  1. Second-Alamo

    Gangsta Rap comes to mind in terms of the question of music’s influence on crime. No good can come of it yet it’s protected free speech, as if that’s what our forefathers were referring to. Not!

  2. Moon-howler

    There is also citizen responsibility. However, when people try to do what is right (like stores selling music) they get accused of censorship. Tipper Gore did a great deal to influence the ratings system. She was also scoffed at.

  3. Punchak

    2nd Alamo

    I remember when people were appalled by the long hair the Beatles had when they first came here and the music they made. Not to mention Elvis the Pelvis! Oh my, how indecent!

    Gangsta Rap is sick, but would anybody really want to forbid a certain kind of “music”? Remember Afghanistan – NO music was allowed by the Taliban. – It’s a problem for parents, but they are the ones who have to deal with it. No matter how severely something is banned, it’ll be available – and more desirable. Underground, you know!

  4. Second-Alamo

    At least the Beatles and Elvis weren’t creating lyrics that supported violence. So why is it that we have spawned a generation that wants Gangsta Rap in the first place, that is the big question. It is the underlying sickness that continues to promote such damaging material, and yet society relates it to personal freedoms. How free are we to walk the streets at night in certain areas? How free are we to allow our children to play without a lookout of sorts? Does anyone remember the days before cars had alarms, banks didn’t have bullet-proof glass, police weren’t stationed at middle schools, people didn’t lock their doors, security cameras weren’t needed everywhere, and you knew who your neighbors were? So much for FREEDOM. I’d say we lost that years ago, and yet society keeps treating criminals as if they are just misunderstood troubled souls, including their music!

  5. IVAN

    I remember exactly where I was when I heard Nixon was resigning and Who told me. Brings back lots of memories. BTW, my draft lottery number was 126.

  6. Second-Alamo

    I was one of those December people, and my number was 16. They’re coming for me! They’re coming for me!

  7. Moon-howler

    They got you too, didn’t they 2nd Alamo?

    As much as we now know about Mansion and his band of merry freaks of nature, there was all sorts of specuation at the time about tho committed those murders.

    Ivan, I remember my husband’s ex wife calling to tell me Nixon was resigning. Does that make it a nightmare? A daymare?

  8. Nightmare = dreaming Nixon is kidnapping you from a helicopter when you are five. Yikes!

    I laugh now whenever I see a helicopter fly over me.

  9. Second-Alamo


    I enlisted before they got to me. I’m highly allergic to rice patties!

  10. Emma

    Just seeing Manson’s creepy face again is enough to give anyone nightmares.

  11. Rick Bentley

    Gangster rap is abject crap, but it’d be a mistake to try to suppress it as speech, or even to make too much of it. It’s a fairly played-out phenomenon. It’s a minstrel show. It’s not to be taken literally. Like pornography, it probably functions as a release valve as much as an irritant.

    When I was a kid, kids would use “death metal” i.e. Slayer, Megadeath, stuff like that to shock their parents. Gangstar rap supplanted it at some point.

    What I do find interesting about gangster rap is that it did evolve and emerge literally from the streets – many of the original artists were fronted by drug dealers rather than record company A&R men. First the records started selling like hotcakes, THEN the record companies put their beaks in to distribute the records. It was not subject to much censure because of this evolution.

  12. Rick Bentley

    “At least the Beatles and Elvis weren’t creating lyrics that supported violence. ”

    Their contemporaries did – and boatloads of drug use, as well.

  13. Rick Bentley

    Run For Your Life
    Lennon/McCartney, 1965

    (a song John didn’t like much but George insisted they should put on “Rubber Soul”)

    Well I’d rather see you dead, little girl
    Than to be with another man
    You better keep your head, little girl
    Or I won’t know where I am

    You better run for your life if you can, little girl
    Hide your head in the sand little girl
    Catch you with another man
    That’s the end’a little girl

    Well you know that I’m a wicked guy
    And I was born with a jealous mind
    And I can’t spend my whole life
    Trying just to make you toe the line

    You better run for your life if you can, little girl
    Hide your head in the sand little girl
    Catch you with another man
    That’s the end’a little girl

    Let this be a sermon
    I mean everything I’ve said
    Baby, I’m determined
    And I’d rather see you dead

    You better run for your life if you can, little girl
    Hide your head in the sand little girl
    Catch you with another man
    That’s the end’a little girl

    I’d rather see you dead, little girl
    Than to be with another man
    You better keep your head, little girl
    Or you won’t know where I am

    You better run for your life if you can, little girl
    Hide your head in the sand little girl
    Catch you with another man
    That’s the end’a little girl
    Na, na, na
    Na, na, na
    Na, na, na
    Na, na, na

  14. Rick Bentley

    Do I even need to quote “Hey Joe” or the Stones’ “Midnight Rambler”?

  15. Rick Bentley

    Ah but I came here to talk about Manson. I read a lot about the Manson family years ago. Everyone wonders how he exerted such influence.

    Well, the murders were lead by Susan Atkins, who was a freak who enjoyed things like drinking blood, and Tex Watson, who had actually ruined his brain with belladonna some time earlier. They took the lead, the other brainwashed sheep mostly watched them. Manson pointed them to the house and relied on the freak with a mean streak and the ex-football star drug casualty to produce the desired result.

  16. Rick Bentley

    Squeaky Fromme is getting released or something, isn’t she? That is FASCINATING. This woman, an avowed Manson disciple, held a gun pointed at President Ford and squeezed the trigger, but had forgotten to load the gun. (I for one accept that she probably self-sabotaged and could have loaded the gun if she wanted to).

    Can you imagine the impact on the American psyche is a Manson disciple had managed to assasinate the President of the US? Probably unlike anything we can imagine.

  17. Moon-howler

    I had not heard that about Squeaky Fromme. Where did you hear that? All of those clowns are up for parole periodically. There have been some good shows on the Mansion ‘family’ this week.

    I think you bring up an important component of music, Rick. Scaring parents. And if you can’t scare them, at least gross them out.

  18. Rick Bentley

    It’s on CNN, I think she’s getting released.

  19. Gainesville Resident

    I didn’t know Squeaky Fromme was getting released either. Sure enough though – I found the article on CNN –

    I remember when that happened, and it sure would have been crazy if she had pulled it off.

    Anyway, that article is interesting reading and tells how she got parole, etc. She’s getting out on Sunday, and she’s now 60 years old!

  20. Moon-howler

    I read it and now I am still wondering why she is being released. Shooting at a president ought to be a real deal breaker as far as parole is concerned.

    None of the Manson group ought to ever be released.

  21. Emma

    John Hinckley will be able to get a DC driver’s license and more time with his family in Virginia, and he actually succeeded at shooting a President. Unbelievable.

  22. Rick Bentley

    Moon-howler, to play “devil’s advocate” here, Fromme wasn’t involved in the murders, and it sems likely that as her defense attorney argues, she deliberately did not load the gun properly before squeezing the trigger while pointed at Ford.

    Hinckley by contrast really should be put away forever I think.

  23. GainesvilleResident

    They keep giving Hinckley more freedom, even though he’s even had some problems at the psychiatric hospital he’s staying at. In spite of the problems he’s had they still for some reason want to continue to give him more freedom – it really doesn’t make any sense.

  24. Moon-howler

    Neither of them should have any time out. Both attempted to kill a US president. Rick, I am not sure what her intent was. The fact that she was ever involved with Manson is a deal sealer to me.

  25. Rick Bentley

    34 years for pointing an unloaded (partially/improperly loaded) gun? She’s a psycho and a bad citizen, but I can live with letting the old woman out of jail at this point.

    If they had let Susan Atkins out, who carrier out the killings, cut the unborn baby out of tate’s stomach, and drank her blood, THAT would upset me.

    FYI, since we’re on about Manson, did you know that Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys was a good friend of his and that the Beach Boys covered a Manson song on one of their records? Did you know that Angela Lansbury’s rebellious daughter hung out with Manson, and that her mother regarded charlie as a good influence?

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