Tim Leary's Lawyer
Joseph Rhine, interviewed by Gerald Pearlman, 1970
SECOND BARDO: THE PERIOD OF EXTERNAL GAME REALITY
Don’t get too lost in all I say
Though at the time I really felt that way
But that was then, and now it’s today
I can’t get off yet so I’m here to stay
Til someone comes along and takes my place
With a different name and yes a different face
The following interview was obtained two weeks after Timothy Leary's spectacular prison escape in 1970 and deals mostly with Leary’s personal and sociopolitical motives, as well as his legal status.
Gerald Pearlman (Gerry):
This article is Part II (Chonyid or Second Bardo) of a three-part interview originally published in The Psychedelic Review. It consists of a transcribed interview with Joseph Rhine, one of Timothy Leary’s senior attorneys. The interview was conducted by Gerald Pearlman of The Psychedelic Review. Mr. Rhine conferred with Leary the day prior to his escape.
You mentioned several reasons that were especially important in Leary’s decision to escape. For instance, you said the denial of the appeal by Douglas was an important factor.
It’s always difficult to try to approach a question like that from somebody else’s point of view. Really what you're asking is whether I know what went on in Tim’s mind and so whatever I might say in that regard has to be looked at somewhat suspiciously. It can only be what my impressions were of having visited with him over that period of time seeing the change.
I think essentially what I’d say is that Tim when MacMillan first put him into jail in March on this California charge still thought the system was going to work and that it was an erroneous sentence, an erroneous verdict, and he thought the system was going to overturn that verdict. That somehow, sooner or later, as his earlier case had gone all the way up to the Supreme Court and they had realized what the problem was with that, he thought that was going to happen here that he was going to be vindicated in the long run.
Obviously, I’m aware of comments that he has made now, or at least I saw one in the newspaper a couple of days ago attributed to him in which he said something to the effect that he had always planned on escaping and so therefore had been a model prisoner when he did go into prison.
I think that while that might have been in the back of his mind in other words he might have though to himself at some point, ‘well, if all else fails I'm not going to sit here for twenty years, I’m going to try and escape.’ But at the first conversations I had with him the thing that was most evident was that he thought his appeals were going to be successful and therefore he’d never have to do something like that.
Didn’t he also have a particular confidence in Justice Douglas?
He had a particular confidence in Douglas. This was based upon our notifying him that Douglas would be the supervising justice in the Supreme Court overseeing the Ninth Circuit which is California’s in terms of the bail question and that was the first question that was up in Tim’s case because he was appealing and he had to ask for bail pending the outcome of his appeal.
In March, when he was first in prison we talked to him about getting bail but the trial judge refused to grant bail. We told him that we could move it up pretty quickly and get to Justice Douglas and he felt that Douglas would most certainly grant him bail.
Tim felt that for a number of reasons Justice Douglas’ life was similar to his own in that Douglas had a great deal of feeling for American freedom; freedom of human beings in the same sense of the freedom of animals. Douglas was also concerned with that pioneering spirit and he alone on the Supreme Court had retained a great deal of that pioneering spirit as far as Tim was concerned.
He also felt that Douglas sympathized more with the young than anybody else in the Supreme Court not only in his marital situation but by the fact that he surrounded himself with young people. He had just published his book, which Tim had read some of the newspaper articles on. I don’t think he has read the book... but he certainly followed the newspaper controversy over Douglas’ book and knew that criticisms were generally leveled at Douglas’ sympathy for the young people, especially their potential revolutionary aspect. So Tim felt that Douglas would understand him and that he and Douglas were very similar kinds of people in their outlook for the future.
So it must have been especially disappointing?
That was one of the primary disappointments that Tim had, if not the most primary. I remember talking to him after the Douglas decision. He was very hurt and very shocked. I think that was the first time he began to doubt seriously that the system was going to vindicate him and that he was going
to get out of jail legally.
You mentioned another reason for deciding to escape was his age at that particular time.
Well, he’s forty-nine going on fifty and he was under two potential ten year sentences, which would have been twenty years. He felt that was substantially the rest of his life. Tim did understand aside from his belief that maybe the legal system would keep him out of jail he did understand that once in jail this system was primarily designed to keep you in jail unless you admitted the error of your ways and conformed to society’s views.
In this regard what got to Tim most was the psychological repression within the prison the whole question of parole officers. He had two sentences, one ran two to ten years, and one ran potentially six months to ten years, but he knew that he was looking at the upper end of those sentences because he knew that the only way he could convince a parole board on those indeterminate kinds of sentences was to conform to their way of thinking... to say that he would no longer advocate the use of any drugs or things like that which was the very essence of the things he was fighting for.
MacMillan, who denied him bail, said very strongly one of the primary reasons was that he felt his proselytizing the young was a danger to society. Tim knew that so long as he constituted that danger since they got by on the question of the legal means to keep him in jail he was not going to get out of jail easily in terms of any kind of parole. With California and Texas, Tim felt he was facing twenty years and as a fifty year old man he felt that was the rest of his life.
You mentioned also that his associtation with the other prisoners had somehow on influenced his decision. I imagine this is connects with what you just said... namely, they advised that he didn’t have much of a chance.
I don’t think they put it verbally, with the exception of a couple of very articulate people he may have run into, but I think he saw their conditioning as foretelling his own future.
Tim went through the testing system. I think he was in Vacaville for that and he didn’t really form strong opinions there, outside of the fact that he was being given some of his own tests that he had designed at Berkeley.
He then went to San Luis Obispo where he spent the bulk of his time, and there found a number of older men who had been broken by the system. They really had nowhere else to go and therefore preferred to stay in prison. I don’t mean to say that those prisoners would have said to him that they liked staying in jail but what had effectively happened as far as Tim was concerned was that those prisoners were conditioned that they could not live in any other situation.
Now most of these were older men, so he felt again the parallel to himself. In minimum security where he was, most prisoners were men of Tim’s age and some even older. Many of them had spent a great deal of their lives in institutions and many of them had very little family outside. A lot of ex-alcoholics, I think there was only one person there that Tim had been aware of who had any dealings with drugs at all.
It was not so much the older prisoners’ advice to him about his legal situation that influenced him as their example of being so crushed by the system and generally apathetic about everything. They accepted the system and they were working within it and he knew it.
He also got advice on legal matters and that had some effect on him. Every time I went down there and I know Mike Kennedy went through the same thing he would say, now so-and-so says, and he would go into somebody who has written lots of writs for prisoners. He was especially concerned for example about things like transportation to and from the various jurisdictions. If he was in Texas, did that mean they could bring him back to California or if he
went to New York for trial how did that affect his coming back to California.
He also had other questions about the 'brief' writing. He went over each of the briefs that was prepared and each of the arguments and so when we got down there he’d have lots of questions stored up for us, many of which had been suggested by the prisoners who were what are called jailhouse lawyers.
He got upset with me one time when he didn’t feel that I was really paying a great deal of attention to a particular point he was raising. He said, “the trouble with you lawyers is that all of you look at the criminal law from the point of view of keeping people out of jail, which is of course what you should primarily be interested in, but you have not built up a body of law about rights of people after they’re in jail, and that’s why you tend to ignore those kinds of problems.”
He went into a long discussion about how he wanted to lecture law students about what really went on inside jails so that maybe future generations
of lawyers there would be some kind of change in the jail system itself.
Didn’t he describe the jail to you as being like Dante’s Inferno
? Do you know what he was referring to?
He felt that nobody could really sympathize fully sympathy
is probably not the right word, empathize
is probably closer with people who were damned unless they were damned themselves. Sympathetic people still could not understand because they did not fully feel and appreciate what the problem was of those people who had been in the prison system for so long. He didn’t want to become the kind of person who is left in that prison system for twenty years.
Well, those are four reasons. Is there anything else that you think was important in influencing his decision at that time?
Well, sure, he and Rosemary had a very difficult time after visits. In some ways visits themselves were painful, especially after San Luis Obispo. In the earlier prisons he had to see visitors through a wire mesh screen or talk to them over the phone between glass. But in San Luis Obispo in the minimum security place there was a little garden walk where you could sit and hold hands a little bit and this sort of thing.
Obviously he felt the physical strain of that. Both he and Rosemary when I talked to her in between visits found those very traumatic experiences. So obviously there is that kind of experience that he went through.
Well, I think that that’s certainly sufficient reason by itself. You told me that you thought Tim Leary’s alliance with the Weathermen was only a temporary phenomenon. Can you elaborate on that in view of recent history?
The recent history I suppose you’re referring to is the fact that Tim is now in Algeria. And Rosemary is with him. I think when you and I talked about this before I didn’t like the use of the word temporary
. What I was trying to say, I think, is it was not a temporary expedient
. I don’t view the way Tim saw it quite that way. I don’t think he just used the Weathermen.
I talked to Tim that Friday and he went over the wall that Saturday night; even at that time he talked about the gentleness of the Woodstock experience, for example, as not being enough to overcome to system’s pressures right now. But it still had a very strong pull on him and on his emotions. Tim talked a lot about the young people in this country and how he felt that he and the young people had a great deal in common.
He was talking essentially about the middle class young white person although he felt very great sympathy and feeling for the black militancy movement too. We did talk about Angela Davis and her problems to some degree and he was sympathetic to her.
All this is by way of saying, I guess, that if Tim were free and left alone to live out a life of his own choosing, he would tend to still be a lecturer and an author more than he would tend to be a revolutionary. Certainly that’s Rosemary’s desire also. I don’t think their experience with the Weathermen and I’ve read some of the newspaper stories about their trips with the Weathermen after Tim got out of jail would change that if they’re left alone and not made a political pawn in other kinds of ideological struggles.
Now that’s not to say that he does not believe that the American system has to be overthrown. He does believe that at this stage of the game because he felt it did him such a great injustice. He realizes that if it did him such a great injustice it will do it i other. people. He probably will continue to talk against, proselytize against, write against, so-called American justice and I think he will tend to call for a revolution in America. But I think essentially Tim’s kind of revolution is more of a peaceful kind of revolution and I think he would tend to think of it that way, although revolutionary none the less.
Well, it’s rather difficult to be in two places at the same time.
Obviously, I think the answer is only time will tell. I agree with you that there are some inconsistencies. On the other hand, there are people like Allen Ginsburg who feel that Tim never had any alliance with the Weathermen at all.
Well, I think he now believes that maybe the letter was true, which he doubted at the beginning. But I still think that someone like Alan Ginsburg is mostly fighting for Allen Ginsburg’s own philosophy in those kinds of statements.
Most of the people I’ve talked to who were shocked one way or another, no matter which way they ended up sympathizing. Most of them were not looking at Tim and Rosemary as people or what were Tim and Rosemary’s particular problems at that time, but were looking at their own political evaluation of the situation that was at hand and how the decision served their particular evaluation.
I don’t think Tim is going to be left entirely alone. Obviously in Algeria he will be faced with visiting dignitaries all the time, revolutionaries of one type or another. He’s already had a great deal of conversation with Eldridge.
Is it true that he has already appeared at the Black Panther Headquarters there?
I don’t know about appearing but he said on the phone when we talked to him the other day that he and Eldridge were getting to know each other well. I don’t know exactly where they’re doing that or under what circumstances but it’s obviously true that he’s had contact and more than just minimal contact, very strong contact, with Eldridge.
How do you think that the ideas commonly associated with Leary in the past will fit in with the prevailing ideology of a socialist country like Algeria?
Well, I think that Leary is now a revolutionary. I think you could never take Leary back to where he was ten months ago or a year ago. I just don’t think it’s possible.
He'll never go back because he did spend seven months in prison, because he did feel it was so unjust, because he felt it was for his advocacy of ideas and not for anything else. Therefore Tim Leary is never going to come the Harvard lecturer again or the establishment man again under any circumstances. So that part of him is not temporary and he will continue to expand on that kind of revolutionary attitude.
The only distinction I’m trying to make is that I do not think that he is a Weatherman, a Socialist, a Black Panther, a Communist, or any one a another of these categories that we tend to classify people into. He is much more individualistic than that. He’s come out of the whole middle class individual approach himself. He was a Harvard lecturer and he’s got the heritage.
He tends to think in his own way, and anyone who’s read any of his books knows that he is unique. There is no other person I’ve read who is like Tim; there is no other person I’ve ever met who is exactly like him. I say that both in a complimentary way but also in a way in which I think he’s got his own ego problems too. So in those senses Tim is not going to fit into anybody’s system, Algeria’s or anybody else’s.
Tim will have to make accommodations in order not to go back to jail. He obviously feels that he has to make a lesser accommodation to live in Algeria that he would have to make to stay in San Luis Obispo in the California prison system. But even because of that I still would not make him out to be a socialist or a preacher of any particular system’s ideas. Obviously he’s going to undergo experiences that none of the rest of us have had to undergo in the sense that he’s going to be an expatriate who cannot come back to his own country at least for many, many years.
Tim’s going to undergo, over the next couple of years, a different style of life, and that's going to influence him in some ways which can’t be foreseen. I would be very disappointed if Tim just ends up writing political tracts for anybody’s system; I still expect he's going to maintain a great deal of that individual approach and style that he already has.
It will be interesting to see how influential he can be from Algeria. Eldridge Cleaver's ability to influence things seems to have diminished very much by his being forced remain in that area.
I wonder if we might spend a little time with the legal stuff that was brought up by Leary’s defense. You stated that the issues raised were designed to reflect the immediate need for reform drug legislation in the country.
Do you think the prosecution may have been more avid if they realized that out of this trial there might be a possible change of drug laws in the country, a change which they are not in favor of, so that they might have gone ahead in prosecuting this case with more zeal than they
might ordinarily have?
You're talking about the New York case now?
No, the California one.
Oh, I think they used all the zeal imaginable in both California and Texas. Of course Texas has a very long history of prosecutions which have been going on for years. One went up to the Supreme Court and was then reversed and went back for retrial.
I think that the government wanted to leave well enough alone with Tim at this stage of the game and that’s why we got the offer of the deal in New York. I think they felt that by putting Tim behind bars for twenty years they had made their point.
They did not want to face any other major trial on drug use because they felt it was a rallying point for the change in the laws. What they were misconceiving was that Tim’s sentence was also a rallying point because Tim was only sentenced on two convictions for possession of marijuana.
For example his son Jackie who was convicted of possession of LSD in Laguna Beach spent six months in jail and probation after that; and Tim, who was convicted on the two roaches that they found in the car ashtray, got ten years as a potential sentence. So obviously the young people were going to look at that and say, My God, that’s crazy.
I mean even assuming you accept the government’s position that these drugs are dangerous, everybody knows that Marijuana is the least harmful of any of these drugs and therefore what they’re going after Tim for is not possession of marijuana but in effect what he is as a person, what he believes and what he advocates.
I think that they were afraid that they were going to face more of that if they tried the New York case. On the other hand I carry a lot of marijuana cases now and the judges in San Francisco in straight marijuana cases for example will work out probation even on sales. They will work out probation on a second, third, fourth offenses quite often.
I think that some of the judges must have had their own kids in trouble from marijuana or something, judging from where they are right now. So that they’re losing that battle, I think, in the long run. However, in terms of legislation there’s a recent very good case either out of the state of Washington or the state of Oregon.
I think it is the state of Washington, in which the legislature passed a law where they took out the classification of marijuana as a dangerous drug. And the courts upheld their reclassification, saying there’s no evidence that, as a matter of law, marijuana has to be classed in either of the classifications. So there’s beginning to be some awareness now I think throughout the country on the question of just pure marijuana. Wouldn’t have helped Tim, probably, even if the laws were changed.
The County Council’s office stated that 52% of all cases now in Marin courts deal with drugs or alcohol. The costs are enormous to the county for this type of a crime without a victim, while other much needed services suffer. Still government seems oblivious to the great harm it does in supporting this repressive legislation.
I've seen some statistics on the costs which are just staggering. They’ll just keep going up if they insist on prosecuting. Not to mention the fact that if you really think the society is having difficulty in law and order terms, think about all your policemen off trying to find somebody really doing harm.
I had a case the other day in which I cross-examined a policeman. He testified that as far as he could see in one section of Golden Gate Park there were only four people: he and his partner and two other people with their backs turned to him overlooking a lake. But he could tell that they were smoking marijuana from where he was standing by the way they were holding their cigarettes and holding their breath in.
Now if we're concerned about rapists and burglars and people who are hitting other people over the head, assaults, and all these other things to go off and send our police force spending all their time chasing two young men who were overlooking a lake meditating, or no matter what the hell they’re doing...
Nude bathing on a deserted beach... .
Or nude bathing or something like that. I just can’t see how this society
can keep going (I couldn't see how they kept going as long as they have in that area anyway) but I do see some hopeful signs in terms of the potential legislation.
You stated also that these "roaches"that they found in Tim Leary’s ashtray were planted. If they were planted, wouldn’t Justice Douglas have been aware of this frame-up by the presentation in your brief, and wouldn’t he have been obliged to at least find out about that?
We had a very complete brief before Douglas, so if he read the brief at all he was aware of it. After Tim left we had still filed his appeal brief which if the courts looked at they would be aware of these things, but two weeks later they still dismissed the California appeal on the grounds that as long as somebody has fled the jurisdiction they don’t have to listen to any appeal.
I don’t know what Douglas was thinking, I don’t know what some of these judges are thinking for
that matter. Some of them are just protective of the status quo, they make no bones about it. Maybe Douglas just felt he’s getting too old to lead these battles and he’s got too many other problems. It’s hard to speculate on exactly where he was at the time he was reading it, if he read it at all, but if he read it he knew those facts.
Does your firm have any other plans? You talked with Leary recently? Are you
still continuing with the defense?
We did. We appealed the California case but it was dismissed, as I say. We're
sending a petition on up to the Supreme Court of California on the question of the dismissal itself; in other words we're saying that we should have the right to process his appeal in his absence.
Tim would obviously like us to do that because it would just open up possible options for him sometime in the future, if the courts would hear it. But the situation in the law right now would be such that it would be a precedent-setting situation if the courts did hear it in his absence.
I wanted to clarify one point from the past: At the time of his escape he had exhausted practically all legal means and you mentioned to me that no legal appeal woiuld be possible. The latest appeal wouldn't be considered until next summer and all the indications were that it would be denied. Is that true? I'm just recapitulating.
That's true on the case itself. The actual conviction in Orange County, we feel, would have to go to the U.S. Supreme Court if anything was to happen with it and that's a process which takes a couple of years.
The one area where we weren't quite so sure was the bail application which was a separate proceeding by that point We had the writ of habeas corpus
on file and that bail application could have gotten up to the Supreme Court we hoped by next summer.
So while Tim's principal case wouldn’t be that quick, it would have been only in the first appeals stage, the bail application might have been there, however, I think it was the Douglas decision which made Tim feel that even if we got the bail application before the United States Supreme Court by next summer.
If Douglas, who Tim felt was the most sympathetic person on the Court, was no help, he didn’t see that the court was going to do anything for him in terms of bail. He felt that he was going to be in jail until his actual case got heard. Not only that, assuming we got the California case they just held him in California heard in a couple of years, then even if he got a reversal out of California, he had the Texas situation facing him.
He wasn’t optimistic about being able to get both of them overturned, so he didn’t see in the long run that he was going to profit much from the appeals no matter which way they went.
Yeah. What I’m trying to get at is that it seems to me that the decision to escape was one of hard-headed practicality, very common sense reasonable after reviewing all the possible alternatives. This was the type of consideration in his mind and it does represent a departure from previous types of concepts that we’ve come to associate with Tim’s thinking, moving more along the spiritual line, and I suppose this is what got to the people that were moved one way or another.
I know some people were disappointed, I don’t know what they expected of him at the time, somehow maybe that he'd stay more of a martyr type of figure in that sense. What’s your feeling on that?
I think it was a hard-headed decision. One thing I always thought about Tim even when I disagreed with him on a lot of things, was that he sometimes didn't do things in realistic way. But one of the things I've always noticed every time I'd meet with him is that the guy really sat and thought for hours about a move, and kind of move.
He went over each of the briefs very carefully. He had ideas on each of the sections. He had been fighting his cases for years. You know Mike and I came into his legal situation late in the game because we didn't pick it up until after he’d been convicted in Orange county. So Tim had experience going over the last four years of solid legal kinds of analysis in all these cases and he was very practical when it came to that point of view and I think that that’s absolutely what happened.
Had he been able to stay out on bail while his appeals were being heard I don’t think he would have gone anywhere. I think he would have stayed and fought it out in the court system till at least he’d lost. He might have made provisions to go elsewhere in case he lost but I don’t think he would have moved at all at this stage of the game.
However, after having sat there for the seven months, after having the first couple of things where he thought he was going to be successful fail right at the beginning, he realized that MacMillan was a little Orange County political figure. A country type judge whom he felt Douglas was going to take on very easily because he didn’t feel there was any problem to Douglas to be able to overrule MacMillan on the question of bail pending appeal.
It didn’t even involve overruling any great rule of law. And so he fully expected that that was going to work and then when it didn’t, when he began to look at those appeal briefs and go over each and every stage, and when he remembered the Texas case which had gone on for four years by that time and still hadn’t been ultimately overturned, he was still facing ten years in Texas after four years of appeals, with minor win well, not so minor, that first Supreme Court decision stands for some very important propositions but even so, that’s an incredible experience to go through.
I think he reached a very practical decision. I also think that Tim didn’t like that kind of total emphasis on him and his problems with the law. I don’t know what it must have done to his life. I know it screwed up his kids and his family in a lot of ways, to be preoccupied with legal hassles all those years. You know, the kids, everything, their whole life was rapped up in that.
The FBI were always visiting, or somebody always bugging them about something, and... Jesus, I can't imagine that he didn't want to get away from that at some point. So I think all those things combined on him.
Roszak, in his counterculture book, maintains that the formation of the church, the League for Spiritual Discovery
, was also a practical measure in response to legal hassles that were taking place at that time.
From the formation of Holding Together
when Tim ran into the California
problem I would say that Tim certainly saw that side, the practical side to it. What his total motivating force was, I really couldn’t say. Certainly I couldn’t say on the League for Spiritual Discovery
Around Holding Together
there were a lot of other people involved. Tim was always very cognizant of what other people around him thought too,
I mean he did not operate by himself in the sense of any of these organizations, I don’t think.
I’m sure he also had the feeling that some of the spiritual aspects were what held people together anyway and what held them together in these organizations; even though he formed them to some degree from a practical outlook, he realized that the spiritual aspect was in the long run the thing that made them work.
One of the areas where we always thought he operated in sort of a strange situation was the way he used to go about publishing his books and doing all these other things. He’s got this collection of people all around him in 65 million places.
In Holding Together
we were trying to cut down on expenses a little bit and it became very difficult because just something like the telephone bill became monstrous because Tim didn’t believe in having one agent somewhere in New York who would handle his publishing problems if he had them in New York. What he had to do was call sixteen personal friends to work on the same problems so that he had sixteen people then, all of whom were calling us back and writing us letters, all geared to the same problem that he was trying to solve, because that was sort of the kind of together feeling that he had within that grouping of people.
I would have liked to have been to that commune they had down in southern California at the time he was there, when they were all living out there. It would have been a very interesting thing to look at because, while he had that practical approach to legal problems, and while he saw what he had to do in some ways to try and defeat the system legally, he also had a very strong feeling for the people who were associated around him and he felt towards them in a very personal way. I know this.
He dealt with them on very personal terms, I mean: No holds barred. Too personal sometimes, too emotional, so that sometimes, as I say, little things would stand in the way of getting major things done.
What do you feel he’s going to do now, what do you think the immediate future will be in Algeria? Will he stay there, what type of activity will he be participating in?
I wouldn’t even presume to guess whether he’ll stay there. I think he'll try to
do some traveling because he’s a very inquisitive man among other things and he wants to write, I do know that. He will write, I’m sure.
I would guess he’ll say pretty much what his own ideas are in some form or another. But I wouldn’t presume to say whether he’ll find a home; I think it depends on how he finds the people that are going to be around him. It’s just too early to tell what he’s going to try to do.
He doesn’t have a great deal of latitude, obviously. We said the last time we talked he has to stay in countries which are not going to be pressured into sending him back to the United States, at least until the climate in the United States changed. Although I think in the back of his mind he may feel that five or ten years from now maybe he’ll be able to come home.
Right. There’s always that hope and possibility, but up to that point I guess he
will be confined to the socialist block. Generally the ideologies of socialist countries have not exactly in mind what he’s been talking and teaching about for the past several years. Now it will be interesting to see how both elements make it with one another. I suppose he could go to some neutral place like Switzerland.
I think he'll try to visit some. But to set up residence and to feel secure in his own residence I think he'll have to stay with the socialist or communist bloc countries because it is only there that he can feel that there's enough strength to withstand whatever American pressure there is in terms of aid or anything else. Unless he can get a final commitment from Switzerland.
When I say he's not a socialist or anything like that right now I think that's true for his present state but I'd be careful to look at the problem two years from now because if he finds real warm response and understanding whether or not they agree officially with his position on drugs if they will let him lead his own kind of life.
One of the things that really got to Tim and Rosemary both over the year is what I said before about their family things where they re always getting harassed; the FBI always visiting; the phones always tapped, this sort of thing.
After a while, there were times where they would have said, "if they would just leave us alone to let us do our thing, whatever we want to do to ourselves and among ourselves.” There were times when it wouldn’t have been so important to Tim to proselytize to anyone. I think in a sense that, if the government and the official groups of those countries will just leave him alone so that he can write, maybe he'll do whatever proselytizing he wants to do just in his writing. Or something like that.
I don't think he feels he needs to have a government or society embrace him and all his ideas or make them the official ideas of any society or
In other words it becomes like a self-fulfilling prophecy, that the government makes him into the destructive force that they claim he is.
That’s correct. And I think that if a socialist government leaves him alone somewhere and lets him do the things that he feels that he has to do in his life, and they are not violent anti-social things, then I think that he could end up becoming an advocate of socialism as he sees it in that situation because they were responsive to those kinds of needs within him. .
That’s why I expect it will be fascinating to see what develops because socialist
countries usually don’t leave individuals alone.
Rhine; That hasn’t been their history so far.
The pressures toward conformity are much greater there than anywhere as far
we can see.
Especially underdeveloped countries.
You know, if he could be a force for somehow loosening up these countries, I think that would be also an interesting development.
Algeria's probably a little different the traditional communist block countries. I'm not familiar enough with Algeria to know but certainly I'd say that they don't traditionally fall into the hard line communist position.
No, no. I think that their development is unique in itself, but he will be traveling in other areas and it will be interesting to see what kinds of impressions and reactions he gets from them.
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