The X-Spot, Year Eight
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
The X-Spot, Year Eight
Well, here I am, in the eighth year of my five-year blogging plan. Still haven't gotten everything out that I wanted. But we'll get there. So what if it takes another five years.
I don't know if this is noticeable or not, but there are certain conventions that I want to adhere to regarding this page. I want to put up at least one post every month. I also want to post on April 1 (April Fools Day), November 22 (anniversary of the coup in Dallas), and February 11, the date on which I accidentally started this blog.
So, I'm not getting into much depth here. After the brouhaha of the last series (which thankfully happened in my in-box, for the most part), it's been kinda quiet, with me vamping on an old familiar topic until I can get my second wind.
Meanwhile, I'm researching a couple of new series that I'll post once the half-year project starts winding down.
In other words, I haven't left this blogosphere quite yet. As CJ might put it, you can think of this page as the bad penny.
Or a boomerang. They're coming back, you know.
Friday, January 31, 2014
The Inner Darkness
3. As alluded to in an earlier post, the Paul-Is-Dead rumor has received more and deeper scrutiny in the last ten years than it did in 1969. To a large degree, this illustrates one of the most critical aspects of the Internet. It's a medium that allows for the instantaneous dissemination of information (and, for that matter, misinformation) without the restrictions of editors, publishers, movie studios, record labels or any other cultural gatekeepers.
Conversely, the 'Net offers these traditional gatekeepers new means and opportunities to increase the presence, and consequently the value, of their brands. In the previous series, I mentioned the utilization of Alternate Reality Gaming (ARGs) in publicizing Hollywood movies and other products. More important, the buzz created around a viral media sensation can likely crossover to exposure and success in such older electronic media as radio and television.
When looking at the Paul-Is-Dead hoax from that perspective, one immediately discovers the hubs that keep the story percolating. A couple of them, The King Is Naked and the Nothing Is Real
boards have been up for a long time. There are a number of other sites, including that of our friend Doc. T, that continue to examine the question.
Yet, there is one hub that everyone discusses at some length. On 10 November 2006, a mysterious netizen going by the handle Iamaphoney posted the first of what would be a series of seventy-eight YouTube videos dedicated solely to the rumor. The content of the videos began simply enough, with the same rehash of backwards messaging and “clues.” One could readily find such information in any other discussion of the topic. But what made this series more compelling, in the sense of being fun to watch, was the numerous photos, film footage, interviews and special effects interwoven with a Beatles soundtrack.
Over the course of the series, Iamaphoney introduced certain items that, at first, seemed out of context, but would later be revisited. This gave the video series something resembling a narrative, albeit not a very clear one. In these diversions one finds Aleister Crowley, Charles Manson and later a cavalcade of other characters (e.g., the guy I call suitcase man). The implication here is that sometime during his life, Sir J. Paul McCartney had become a posthumous acolyte of Thelema, and that he and John Lennon had some nebulous connection to the Tate-LaBianca murders.
Although Iamaphoney seemingly tried his deliberate best to be vague, he occasionally made short, unambiguous, sensational claims that aren't readily substantiated. In one video, for example, he declared that McCartney met Manson at Dennis Wilson's house on 28 July 1968.* In another he declared that he had solved the Paul-Is-Dead rumor and was now staking a claim for the prize that (rumor has it) accompanies the feat.
As for the latter declaration, who would know whether or not he she or they actually submitted anything to Apple Corps limited, and won the fabled prize of a hundred grand for their troubles? In other words, it's the statement of a fact that's highly dubious, and can't be readily verified. As for the former statement, one could see that it involves a fair degree of speculation.
Of course, many critics have taken Iamaphoney to task over the years. Sometimes they chided his, her or their deceitfulness. For the most part, they question the presumed authority and confidence he/she/they exude(s).
Most important, they question Iamaphoney's identity and purpose.
*In case you're wondering, many sources place McCartney in the Los Angeles area on that date. He went to California to show the brass at Capitol Records a promotional video for Apple Records, hoping that the EMI subsidiary would distribute their line in the US, which they did for many years. While there it's possible that McCartney visited Wilson, and if so might have come across Charles Manson or Charles Watson. But I have yet to find corroboration of this.
To be continued.
Monday, December 30, 2013
Out with the Old...
Well, here we go with another year.
This year, and the one before it were two of the most stressful I’ve had in the blogosphere, and they came at the worst possible time: when my freelancing started picking up, and amidst the death throes of my beloved laptop due to a Kentucky Fried Motherboard.
I just got a new laptop a few days before Christmas, and it took about a day to download my backup files and software onto the new machine. To speak the plain truth, it’s kinda nice to have a new machine, free of freezes and blue screens. It’s got double the RAM of the old one, four times the cores, and one magnificent TB of hard-disk space.
On top of this, I’ve been in the process of moving for the past several weeks. So, for me, 2014 will look very different than 2013. Then again, nothing lasts forever.
I haven’t given up blogging, for I have tons more to write about. But, as you can see with me puttering around with a long–dead series, I’ve been more or less vamping until I can write what I really want here.
For those of you who’ve hung around, I thank you and wish you a fantastic new year. We’ll get back on track, eventually. And I look forward to getting back on track sometime around May or June. Until then, be sure that you all are in my thoughts and prayers.
Friday, November 22, 2013
Assailing the Tender Age: How to Beat It All the Way to Ohio
Thursday, 20 November 2003. On this date, thousands of anti-war activists were preparing for a weekend of international demonstrations against the United States’ impending invasion of Iraq. But this event received little press.
Another story upstaged it.
Television stations went live around the US to report that a plane from Las Vegas would be landing sometime in Santa Barbara, CA.
Pop star Michael Jackson had taken the flight in order to turn himself in to local authorities following an arrest warrant for child sexual abuse. The subsequent news coverage of the arrest and ultimate adjudication of the case added mew meaning to the cliche “media circus.” Amid Jackson’s ultimate acquittal on all of the fourteen charges against him on 13 June 2005 were numerous doubts regarding his innocence in the matter. However, the Wilshire division of LAPD and the Los Angeles Department of Children & Family Services had concluded in a 26 November 2003 investigation that the charges were “unfounded.” Also other celebrities, most notably Tonight Show host Jay Leno, swore or testified that the family of the boy appeared to want to shake them down. And the family itself insisted on 19 February 2003, six days after the LAPD investigation began, to British documentary producer Martin Bashir, that no molestation took place.
Figure 1. Los Angeles Department of Children & Family Services Report.
Of course, that leads to the question of why the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office would spend so much of its resources prosecuting a case that its own investigators characterized as “unfounded.” Between 2003 and 2005, I noted how the intense coverage of this case dominated the mediasphere to the distraction of more important stories, among them the prosecution of the war in Iraq, the sharp increase in wealth disparity that had occurred during the Bush administration, or the unsound trading practices that would shortly lead to an economic crisis in the US.
Sources conflict as to the origins of one hypothesis explaining the prosecutor’s office dogged pursuit of Jackson. What’s not in dispute is that a private investigator hired by Jackson, one Gordon Novel, disclosed the particulars of it to Vanity Fair reporter Maureen Orth in 2005. According to him, Michael’s brother, Jermaine, suspected that SONY records, it’s former head Tommy Mottola, and Deputy District Attorney Tom Sneddon had conspired against his brother. The point would be to bring criminal charges. A conviction would lay the foundation for a civil case that would bankrupt Michael and force him to sell off his assets, among them all of his intellectual property. This included Northern Songs, a gold-mine firm that among other things administers the rights to the Beatles catalogue.*
According to some sources, Novel left Jackson’s employ because he felt Mottola too dangerous a person to tangle with. But Novel said that he quit the case because Jackson stiffed him for five grand of his $25,000 retainer. Novel then approached news outlets in an attempt to sell his knowledge about the case. As Orth pointed out, however, Vanity Fair had a policy of not paying for information.
As you are probably aware, there have been a number of conspiracy hypotheses surrounding Jackson’s death in 2009--ranging from speculation that Sir J. Paul McCartney masterminded Michael's demise in order to finally gain control over his own music, to reports that Jackson faked his own passing. Obviously, there’s no reason to take such stories seriously. Yet, I’m intrigued by how much of the conjecture centers on the relationship between Jackson and Novel.
Novel had a, let’s just say “colorful,” past that entangled itself with ufology and other parapolitical tales. But it’s his involvement with one particular conspiracy story that compels our attention on 22 November 2013, the fiftieth anniversary of the JFK assassination.
Novel, a New Orleans native, had a fairly broad background, studying engineering at Northrup Aeronautical Institute of Technology, and continuing his education at Louisiana State University and the University of Southern California. Before working as a private investigator, Novel also tried his hand in showbiz, serving as a director for films shot in conjunction with the Pasadena Playhouse. According to one researcher, Alan J. Weberman, Novel also belonged to a neo-Nazi group, an involvement that led to his arrest for the bombing of a Metairie, LA movie theater that allowed integrated audiences.
As a private investigator, he worked on some fairly high-profile cases, among them the defense of automaker John DeLorean against drug charges. He also worked for Uncle Sam, investigating the deaths of seventy-six adults and children at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, TX.**
Most important,, he worked for Orleans Parish District Attorney Jim Garrison on the JFK assassination.
Garrison told Novel to beat it after a number of suspicious actions led him to believe that the latter was deliberately trying to thwart his investigation.*** Garrison subsequently learned of other things, which convinced him that Novel was a CIA contract agent, starting with his close association to David Ferrie and Guy Banister. As Garrison explained in an October 1967 Playboy magazine interview:
In 1961, he [Novel] raided a munitions bunker in Houma, Louisiana, with David Ferrie and a prominent anti–Castro exile leader, and the weapons seized were subsequently shipped by CIA agents to the counterrevolutionary underground in Cuba. He also worked for the Evergreen Advertising Agency in New Orleans, a CIA front that alerted anti–Castro agents to the date of the Bay of Pigs invasion by placing coded messages in radio commercials for Christmas trees. Novel himself was a paid employee of the CIA.Garrison subsequently sought his former investigator for questioning. But Novel wouldn’t wait around for the third degree. He fled New Orleans. Garrison cited a newspaper source reporting that days after he left the Big Easy Novel was present in McLean, VA, a town near the CIA’s headquarters in Langley. Yet, in his haste to avoid the District Attorney, Novel left behind yet one more piece of incriminating evidence:
After Novel fled the city in March, my investigators and the city police both scoured his apartment for evidence, but Novel appeared to have covered his trail pretty effectively. I’m afraid, in this case, we weren’t as efficient as two young girls who moved into Novel’s apartment a few weeks later and, during a thorough house cleaning, found a penciled rough draft of a letter under a strip of linoleum on the kitchen–sink drainboard. One of the girls gave it to her boyfriend, a student at Tulane University, and he in turn passed it on to one of his professors, who subsequently showed the letter to Hoke May, a reporter for the New Orleans States–Item. May had the letter examined by an independent handwriting analyst, Gilbert Fortier, who compared it with other samples of Novel’s writing and determined that the draft had been written by Novel — a fact that was confirmed by Novel’s attorney, who said that 'everything in the letter as far as Novel is concerned is actually the truth.'After Virginia, Novel’s movements became more difficult to trace. But Garrison finally tracked him down to Ohio, where he sought Novel’s extradition to Louisiana for questioning. Curiously, Ohio Governor James Rhodes denied the request unless the Orleans Parish District Attorney specifically promised not to ask him questions about the JFK assassination.
Of course, that would kinda defeat the purpose of bringing him down to New Orleans.
Novel’s involvement in a lot of weird, high-profile and conspiracy cases is something worth noting. Not just because of Novel’s knack over the years for sticking his fingers in a lot of interesting pies, but because it exemplifies something that I and a number of other writers have observed.
On The X-Spot you will find the JFK assassination mentioned in seemingly unrelated stories. For example, former Harper’s editor Jim Hougan, CBS newsman Daniel Schorr and former Nixon-Chief of Staff H.R. Haldeman all discovered a link between Kennedy’s assassination and the events of Watergate. Mae Brussell noted that Ed Butler Lawrence Schiller and Larry Ball, all of whom played critical roles in propagating the single shooter story, attempted to crystalize public opinion against black militancy and the youth counterculture in the wake of the Tate-LaBianca slayings.***** The role of Kerry Thornley, a reputed second-Oswald and a confirmed (yet spurious) witness for the Warren Commission, in forming Discordianism, the very existence of which confounds serious inquiry into sensitive political issues, came up in the story of Jeremy Blake and Theresa Duncan. The previously cited JFK researcher A.J. Weberman came up in The Grounded Walrus series, due to a declassified FBI item documenting his harassment of both John Lennon and Bob Dylan.
And we’re just getting started. There are a lot of other cases where you can find the footprints of JFK assassination issues crisscrossing the path of understanding. Over the years, I’ve occasionally seen self-described skeptics depict the overlapping of personnel between the JFK assassination and other conspiracy stories as "proof" of the latter’s implausibility: the gist of them is that shadowy people like Novel, the CIA, the military industrial complex serve the same function as other putative “villains” of spurious conspiracy lore, such as the Freemasons, the Illuminati, and certain ethnic groups.
To me, the appearance of the same characters in so many stories seems more indicative of well-trained and experienced professionals who, by now know what they are doing when it comes to shaping public opinion, especially with respect to politically sensitive topics.
Gordon Novel passed away in his sleep on 3 October 2012.
* Mottola stepped down from his stewardship of SONY in January 2003, a month before the investigation into the child sex abuse case against Jackson began.
**Specifically, he was tapped by former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark to investigate David Koresh et al.
***Novel is loosely fictionalized in Oliver Stone’s JFK as Bill Broussard, played by actor Michael Rooker.
****The Double-Chek Corporation was a CIA money-conduit front that maintained the cover of a private holding and investment firm. Headquartered in Miami Springs, FL, it secretly funneled money on behalf of the Agency. For example, when four CIA-backed pilots illegally participating in The Bay of Pigs Invasion–contrary to orders of President Kennedy–were shot down, their widows were paid a $450/month “insurance” benefit by the Double-Chek Corporation. In their aforementioned 1964 book The Invisible Government, David Wise and Thomas Ross felt that this money was used to silence the widows, or dissuade them from contesting the official story given them: namely, that their husbands died as test pilots for experimental aircrafts.
*****Ball consulted for the Warren Commission, and later with Susan Atkins. Schiller recorded Ruby’s fraudulent confession for Capitol Records shortly before the nightclub owner’s death, and co-wrote Atkins’ memoir, which honed the dubious Helter-Skelter motive. Butler hosted Oswald’s radio appearance with Carlos Bringuier, thus painting Lee as a Communist, and possibly a Soviet or Cuban fifth columnist, and wrote an op-ed piece titled “Did Hate Kill Tate?” in which he blamed the Tate-LaBianca killings on the Black Panthers.
A Chat with Gordon
From a 2010 interview with Gordon Novel for NewRealities.
Out of Order, Chaos
* Abraham Lincoln defeated incumbent Vice President John Breckenridge to gain the US presidency in 1860. John Kennedy defeated incumbent Vice President Richard Nixon to gain the US presidency in 1960.You’ve seen these before, I assume. But if you haven’t, these are a list of connections between the JFK and Lincoln assassinations.
* Both Lincoln and Kennedy ‘were concerned’ about African American civil rights.Many of these connections are quite accurate. Some, however, are not.
* Lincoln had a personal secretary named Kennedy. Kennedy had a personal secretary named Lincoln.
In the above, for example, we know for a fact that JFK had a personal secretary named Evelyn Lincoln. In fact, I’ve cited her memoir on The X-Spot. But there’s no record or indication that President Lincoln ever had a secretary named Kennedy.
Of course, when people make lists such as this, they’re on a roll and hard to stop. When you’re on a roll, it’s almost unconscionable to let accuracy get in the way of a good myth.
And, perhaps a myth is precisely what we’re looking at. The original author of this list will forever remain a mystery. Yet, we can show that it came into existence less then a year after JFK’s demise. An article in the 10 August 1964 edition of Newsweek reported its presence in the G.O.P. Congressional Newsletter.
* President Lincoln was shot at Ford’s Theater. President Kennedy was shot in a Lincoln, a car manufactured by the Ford Motor Company.In the previous series, and in the sporadic posts I’ve put up recently regarding the Paul-Is-Dead rumor, I’ve noticed a tendency to make connections such as these. I obviously don’t think there’s anything wrong with making connections. That’s what we do here. The problem is the lack of critical evaluation of information that assesses its relevance. Consequently, many of these connections don’t mean very much, and have led some very bright researchers down the garden path to self-discrediting.
What makes a connection meaningful? Oftentimes, that’s difficult to tell. A datum might have significance later on if it is consistent, or inconsistent with a narrative. And you might not see its importance at first. Yet oftentimes, these stray bits of information don’t really address the critical matters at hand, and at worst distract from examination of important evidence. Moreover, many of these items can be explained fairly easily simply by looking at the context of the connections. For example, the fact that Lincoln was elected in 1860 and Kennedy in 1960 isn’t that remarkable in and of itself when you point out that US presidential elections occur every four years. After all, 100 is just a dumb number. It’s only human perception that endows a century, or a round figure, with special significance. One can also note that Johnson is a rather common American/British name. There’s nothing spectacular in that as well. Also, a number of incumbent vice-presidents (e.g. Thomas Jefferson, George H. W. Bush, Albert Gore, Jr.) have run for the presidency. Sometimes they win, sometimes they lose. But it’s not an uncommon occurrence. So there’s nothing particularly meaningful about that connection either.
In other words, some things are better and more satisfyingly explained as coincidence. In the natural order of things, synchronicity happens. When it doesn’t happen at all, that’s something to take note of. When someone presents a story where there is no chance of randomness in any facet, I get more than a tad suspicious.
* Both the names Lee Harvey Oswald and John Wilkes Booth have fifteen letters.
* Both Andrew and Lyndon are six letters.Another weakness in these types of connections is the perceptual fallacy of forcing meaning onto randomness. The Cosmos isn’t scripted. Yet some act as if it were. One can note a number of times when somebody attempts to show a pattern of deliberate action by only citing data that affirm their ideas, and dismissing information that doesn’t. In any two instances, you can draw at least one similarity between event A and event B. In the case of Lincoln and Kennedy, the fact that most people will never be President of the United States, and that most US Presidents do not die in office, let alone by dint of assassination allows more similarities to be drawn. Yet, one can find many more dissimilarities between these two men that seem to escape mention in this presentation of fact. For example, Kennedy was a New Englander, Lincoln a Midwesterner. Kennedy had a rather pronounced libido, Lincoln did not. Kennedy believed in racial equality, whereas Lincoln (despite the Emancipation Proclamation) believed in white supremacy.* Lincoln lived and died in the Nineteenth Century, Kennedy the Twentieth Century. Lincoln was born in 1809, Kennedy in 1917. Lincoln died at age 56, Kennedy at age 46. Lincoln never traveled outside the US while in office, but Kennedy did. Lincoln faced danger from a divided country, where alien enemies actively sought to kill him. Kennedy faced danger from a united country wherein enemies of the state had seized some measure of control over the government and threatened him from within the system. President Kennedy had to contend with the CIA. Lincoln’s Intel concerns were not nearly so hairy or complex. The technology of the 1960s was vastly different than the cutting edge of the 1860s, thus Kennedy could more readily communicate and become a “personality” with the public than Lincoln.
I could go on and on (and sometimes I do), but you get the point, right? The selective culling of facts does not for good research make.
* The names Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy both contain five syllables.On the one hand, you might say that the very existence of these noted connections, circulating as they did less than a year after the assassination, most likely reflected the actual feelings of the public at that time. As I researched the JFK assassination over the years, one thing that astonishes me is the degree to which many sectors of society doubted the single-shooter hypothesis from the outset. These sentiments grew more vocal after the Warren Commission published its findings. Yet, this rumor might have given voice to those dissenting from the information gleaned from contemporary television and news reports by linking Jack’s death to that of Lincoln, whose assassination was officially ruled a conspiracy.
Consequently, the connections became part of American lore, a tale spun in many different media. I first encountered them as a child in the 1970s as presented on a bubble gum wrapper (I kid you not). I’ve since seen them on TV, heard them on radio, and spotted an allusion to them in a comic book. I’ve even heard a musical rendition of this list.
Figure 1. Musical rendition of the Lincoln-JFK connections (Buddy Starcher).
At the same time, these connections do not support any finding of truth in the JFK assassination, and often undermine serious inquiry into a very serious and somber subject matter. For example, in 1992 the Skeptical Inquirer held a “Spooky Presidential Coincidences Contest.” Contestants were able to come up with similar lists when comparing most US Presidents. Not surprisingly, some have used such lists to “debunk” the notion of a conspiracy in Dallas on 22 November 1963, although that type of specious reasoning seems to exemplify the same type of logic that went into this original list.
Like the Paul-Is-Dead clues, people have since come up with more connections. For instance, in his 200 book UFOs, JFK and Elvis: Conspiracies You Don’t Have to Be Crazy to Believe, comedian Richard Belzer came up with yet another one:
* The year before his death, Lincoln was in Monroe, Maryland. The year before his death, Kennedy was in Marilyn Monroe._____________________
* While one can certainly argue that Lincoln advanced the cause of African American civil rights in the US, one has to also note that the Emancipation Proclamation had no legal bearing on slavery. When Lincoln issued it (1 January 1863), the directive only applied to states within the CSA, which at that time was a foreign, enemy nation. The President cannot really make an enforceable law for a foreign nation, especially an enemy one. Moreover, the Proclamation exempted slave states that were part of the Union (e.g., Tennessee, the counties of Virginia that were in the process of becoming the state of West Virginia).
Legal slavery in the US actually ended with the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution on 18 December 1865.`
Thursday, November 07, 2013
The Silver Hammer
Identical twins Reginald and Ronald Kray (left) grew up in London’s violent east end, amid the raging carnage of the Battle of Britain. In short, they were tough. Real tough.
They put that toughness to use as professional prizefighters. They also led a criminal gang that specialized in protection rackets, muggings, and murder-for-hire. They parlayed the money they got from all of these enterprises into a chain of nightclubs, starting with their flagship operation, Esmeralda’s Barn.
Despite the name, the club attracted such local celebrities as Diana Dors. Marlene Dietrich, Judy Garland, and Frank Sinatra also frequented the place when in town. The Krays ingratiated themselves with the glitterati, many of whom warmed to the genial, albeit dangerous hosts.
The Krays made a special point of getting friendly with John Lennon, J. Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Richard Starkey right after Beatlemania had rendered them arguably the most famous four people on the planet. But according to a 21 June 2009 story by Zee News, the Krays weren’t schmoozing the Fab Four for celebrity’s sake alone. The twins aimed to get rid of Epstein, and take over the Beatles themselves:
It has also been revealed that Reginald ‘Reggie’ Kray and Ronald ‘Ronnie’ Kray, the foremost organised crime leaders dominating London`s East End during the 1950s and 1960s, asked Glasgow crimelord Arthur Thompson for advice on their plan. . . .The report goes on to say that Thompson had to talk them out of a hostile takeover of the Beatles. One might suspect, given their history, that they could have ignored Thompson, and nevertheless considered murdering Brian Epstein and David Jacobs (respectively, the Beatles’ manager and attorney) to achieve this purpose.
The twins indeed murdered, either through their henchmen, or on their own. On 9 March 1966, Ronnie gunned down rival gangster George Cornell at a local pub, after the latter allegedly made threats against him and called him a “fat poof” to his face. The shooting occurred in front of a bar full of witnesses, all of them too intimidated to talk to police, at least initially. In October 1967, Ron held one of their fellow gang members, Jack McVitie, so that Reg could stab him to death. The twins paid McVitie £1,500 up front for a hit that Jack never carried out. They murdered him for reneging on the contract, and for being a general pain in the can.
It took a couple of years to amass a case against them, but Inspector Leonard Reed finally took the brothers, and fifteen members of their gang, into custody on 8 March 1968. They were subsequently convicted of murder, and sentenced to life imprisonment. Ron died behind bars in 1995. In the year 2000, the government gave Reg a compassionate release after the surviving Kray came down with inoperable cancer.
Reg lived eight weeks as a free man. During this time he gave a controversial interview with BBC, during which he claimed to have committed one additional murder that police had missed. Although that one death would bump the brothers’ official body count by 50%, there were indications that this unnamed victim might have represented only the tip of a very large iceberg.* In 2002, someone very close to Reg would declare that the brothers carried out at least one more murder, and successfully disguised it as a suicide.
The informant, born 1979 as Bradley Allardyce, grew up hearing about the Kray twins’ exploits.** Indeed, in some circles the pair had become folk heroes. So, as a child, he became Reg’s pen pal, and met finally met him in 1991 at Gartree Prison. A few years later, Bradley embarked on his own life of crime, and wound up becoming his idol’s jailmate. It was at this time when the relationship between Allardyce and Kray became intense, and, as Brad would later declare, sexually intimate.
In 2002, two years after the last Kray brother’s death, Allardyce stated publically that Reg confessed to him his darkest secret: specifically, the murder of his first wife, Frances. Police ruled that a distraught Frances committed suicide after she and Reg became estranged. But according to Allardyce, Reg told Ron to force her to swallow sleeping pills at gunpoint. (One might also imagine that he might have threatened harm to other family members..)***
What this all means is that (1) the Kray twins wanted to take control of the Beatles; (2) weren’t above murdering others to achieve these goals; and (3) had some facility for disguising deaths as suicide. So one could naturally imagine them forcing someone like Epstein to swallow a lethal dose of carbamazepine, impressing on the manager that if they couldn’t have the Beatles, no one would, even if it meant killing all four of them. Even though in custody during the death of David Jacobs, one has to keep in mind that the brothers engaged in murder-for-hire. They would know quite well how to arrange a hit “on the outside,” especially if they believed that they could beat the rap, and reap the rewards of Beatles’ management.
Then too, there could have been another, more personal motive. Ron vehemently, sometimes violently, reacted when someone accused him of being gay (as did his victim, Cornell). He instead, in his later years, that he was bisexual. Note that five of the six men mentioned by Doc T. (Epstein, Jacobs, Kenneth Halliwell, Joe Orton, and Joe Meek) were not only gay, but also networking, socially and professionally, through this discreet, underground social scene. This has led to some speculation that Ron (and perhaps Reg) both belonged to this underground at various times, and worried about exposure should the others, because of their distaste and disgust at the brothers’ tactics, out them.
There are two major problems with the hypothesis that the Kray brothers murdered Epstein and Jacobs in order to takeover control of the Beatles. First, there’s the obvious: lack of evidence. Even if we stipulate that the twins murdered, and that some of these murder were never solved; even if we concede the possibility that they were adept at disguising murders as suicides, then we would still have to admit that we don’t have evidence for this hypothesis at all. Instead, we have conjecture and the realization that the evidence available doesn’t preclude this as a possibility.
What casts severe doubts about this hypothesis is that it presupposes that the Krays would have disobeyed crimelord Arthur Thompson, or could without suffering disastrous consequences. For all we know, Thompson might have talked them out of the plan because another, more powerful gang, had already staked out the Beatles as their territory.
*Inspector Reed believed that the victim was Teddy Smith, one of Ron’s former paramours.
**At some point, Allardyce legally changed his name to Kray. Most sources nevertheless refer to him as Allardyce.
Brad and Reg shared a mutual fantasy that they were father and adopted son. They referred to each other as such n their correspondence. Thus the change in name most likely aided in this fantasy.
***Upon hearing Allardyce’s allegation, Inspector Reed found the story credible enough to have been investigated had he known about it at the time. But by 2002, when Brad made this statement, both Kray brothers had already died. Thus, Reed found no reason to embark upon further investigations into possible crimes they might have committed.
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