Gargling With The Gods of the Underworld
The Abyss Yodels Back
-William McKeen: Outlaw Journalist: The Life and Times of Hunter S. Thompson
"Nobody doubted that Carl and Bob had tapped a main source. Deep Throat was the tap-root, the man with the final credentials.His motives were never made clear, except in some giddy gray realm of "morality," and the rape of his personal ethics. "
"In the legend he is a figure like Socrates, a man of long reach and wisdom, too smart for his work and obviously Not Like The Others."
He works for the President, but his hero is William Burroughs and his knuckles have grown together like crushed roots... his name down at the 15th and "L" in the newsroom was "Deep Throat."
Some people knew, but not many. Scott Armstrong* knew, along with Oscar Acosta and a senior stewardess for one of the airlines. We even kept it from Frank Mankiewicz, who knew almost everything else. It was one of those things that seemed better, at the time, not to talk about."
April 14, 1986
- HunterS. Thompson: Generation of Swine; They Called Him Deep Throat
[*Scott Armstrong was a journalist for the Washington Post during Watergate and childhood friend of Bob Woodward.]
"With the Watergate thing, what we took great pride in here was that it didn't really have much to do with the President himself or the office. It was more the fact that the people, and the press, actually did run the country and that we could throw out a crooked President and there was a great amount of pride in that. ...We took great pride in that we could throw him out. You know, chase the bastards out of Washington. And somehow there was a great celebration of the power of the people after Watergate. Hell, I did it myself; I was proud of all of us. And somehow that has not carried over. There was a great celebration but it was honoured more in the spirit than the reality."
-Hunter Thompson interview with Jack Thompson: "Studio for Men", [an Australian magazine similar to GQ.] February 1989.
On Karma - "It's extremely bad karma to brag about things you've gotten away with. I'm a great believer im karma in a profound sense: You will get what's coming to you."
-Hunter Thompson Interview with Tim Mohr for Playboy, Dec. 2004
"Dr. Thompson, Is it true that you are the real Keyser Soze?
I've been accused of that, it's a good question. Say yes. ...That's a very intelligent question and I compliment the person that asked it."
- interview with Sara Nelson for Book Report, June 1997
ON FATE: " I'm doomed all my life to violent actions. I'm closely associated with the gods of the underworld—not crime so much but the underworld."
--Hunter Thompson Interview with Tim Mohr for Playboy, Dec. 2004
Norma Jean Thompson: "Are you afraid of death? HST: No ... No. There is no death."
-NuCity Goes Gonzo, NuCity Press
__________________________________________________________________________________________On February 21, 2005, the day after Hunter Thompson's death, I got a call from a guy known in certain Colorado circles as "The Mess of Snowmass." It was no casual nickname. He was a real wreck. He was the kind of guy who often bumped into Jesus Himself around dawn, so I wasn't surprised when he woke me at 4 AM with a story about having Hunter's final writings in hand. I was curious; I knew he knew Hunter and that they'd once shared a close common friend. But they also shared a penchant for wild fictions. There was reason that week to be worried about my friend's state of mind, as the death of French porn queen Karen Lancaume had thrown him into an obsession with suicide. Plus he suddenly wouldn't shut up about his weird idea that Hunter fucking Thompson was Deep Throat.
This was three months before Vanity Fair outed Mark Felt, but Throat had been in the news due to a rumor that he, whoever he was, was near death. At first I figured that my friend was just playing with that story; Hunter had been unwell and had spoken before about suicide as succor to the sick. But the Mess insisted that he was telling the truth. "They're going to name this Felt, but it was Hunter," he kept repeating. "He says it in the note, I'll show you."
A friend I talked into checking on the Mess called later with news that there was indeed a "note," a food-stained photocopy of what looked like a typewritten document. She had no clue where the thing had come from; all she could say for sure was that our friend hadn't written it. He was a lovably lousy writer and remained so until his death, which, when it finally came last year, came accompanied by its own note reading simply, "Sick of this." He'd driven out to the woods and put a pistol in his mouth on the thirty-ninth anniversary of his brother's death in Vietnam.
What follows is the text sent to me by the Mess on February 28, typed painstakingly over days into a library computer. He was so convinced of the document's authenticity -- and of the version of events it told -- that he wouldn't even make a copy to mail. He refused to tell me where it came from, deleted the text numerous times before finally sending it, and grew increasingly concerned that just possessing it put him in peril. My friend was a great believer in the brutal appetites of power; he believed the rumor that Thompson had been working on a piece about a 9/11 conspiracy and was convinced that Hunter had been murdered by his government.
The Mess flushed his copy of the note shortly thereafter, so I never got to see the thing myself. Years of effort have revealed nothing in the way of origin. I make no claim that what follows is Thompson's, though even the most questionable passages -- the loftiness, the purposely obvious phrases from Hunter's older work -- are oddly authentic in their way, for Hunter couldn't help but plagiarize himself in later years, and he never did get over the dream of writing like F. Scott Fitzgerald.
The last confessions of Hunter S. Thompson have enjoyed some small attention over the years, coming and going from the weirdest corners of the conspiracy scene. Some of the evidence still exists on the Internet; postings and discussions date back to the week after Hunter's death. And though I myself shared the text online as soon as I received it, I've seen excerpts dating to before the Mess ever sent it out -- mysterious, unattributed postings in blog comments and car forums -- suggesting that my dear old friend wasn't the only recipient.
I don't believe that these are Hunter's words. I don't entirely disbelieve it either. I certainly don't think that Hunter S. Thompson was Deep Throat. But it's the sort of thing I would like to believe in, like democracy and human dignity and the devils getting what's due, and for that reason I assure you that every word you are about to read is gospel.
Feburary 15, 2008
http://www.rinkelly.com/2008/10/last-testament-of-someone-apparently.html(Intro originally written for L.A. RECORD)
"In three decades of speculation about the identity of legendary Watergate source 'Deep Throat,' few prominent members of the Nixon administration swept up in the scandal have endorsed a likely suspect. Even John Dean has hedged and offered multiple guesses. But now E&P has learned that former top Nixon aide, John Ehrlichman, who went to prison for his role in Watergate, felt strongly that he knew the identity of Deep Throat.
His candidate: Henry Kissinger.
This revelation comes from Walter Anderson, the chairman and CEO of Parade magazine and a close friend of the former Nixon aide, who died in 1999. Ehrlichman, Anderson said, identified Kissinger as Deep Throat in a conversation with him more than 20 years ago.
'He was absolutely convinced of it,' Anderson said, when asked by E&P to comment on the recent surge in speculation about the identity of Deep Throat. He added that Ehrlichman's view of Kissinger as Deep Throat has never surfaced before, as far he knows.
'Ehrlichman argued that Kissinger was high enough in the organization to have the information, and understand it, close enough to Nixon to know all the details,' Anderson said, 'and he was virtually untarnished by the Watergate scandal, particularly in the press.'" -journalist Greg Mitchell, Editor & Publisher, February 16, 2005
Well...shit. But it is worth noting that Kissinger, the stench trap I will smell for all eternity, doomed or no, is not the person you seek. No...Kissinger is a mere stock genius among swine and we are guaranteed to suffer these jackals again so long as vice and cruelty and their witless apostles trample and piss the Earth, and none of their stripe would (or will) ever rat nor fink on a crook like Nixon--and, I'll add, in the long haul Kissinger will look like the five-cent Satan ride before the doors to the big party came squealing open. Selah. I leave you to posterity.
But before we get to my posterity, as it were, I'd like to say that it is a very strange feeling to be a Dead American writer in this fresh century, looking at all this gibberish of mine that seems to belong so much to the last. Even Kissinger seems to belong to that Gone Century now--the stink is foul but quaint. There is a closing world up ahead without very much glimmer of me in it, either; I had hoped at least to leave a pining green light at the end of a distant dock. Right now I am staring at a fat red light on the wing of an iced-over 747, trapped in the Denver International Airport, and when I tire of musing on this last souvenir of Life on Earth I am still Free, as it were, to take in those big white barn tits DIA calls a roof, heaving-ho into the yonder. This, I suppose, is Death...(exactly as you had imagined it).
Before we get to Throat I will also mention that there is some kind of heavy connection between the keys on this machine and the words themselves--the high white sound is all in the speed-lashing, the banging, all things being wretched and alive, and I frankly don't give a fuck about that these days. I've grappled with these elegant mechanical beasts for the last time. I tend, more and more, to just sit back and think the words I need...so if you are reading this...then on with the gameplan...
And this is a grim thing to think: I feel now my words are essentially complete. They've run off without me somewhere and don't want me ghosting around the exits anymore. I know in my heart the maniacal little fixers only ever wanted to scrape me open and screw the gristle into ever more freaky shapes, all for the sake of the Work. Who can argue with a battle-plan like that? My words, after all, are Americans too--balls-out, vicious careerists to the foul bleating core. They wanted to Succeed so bad they whacked me to get us all on the cover of the New York Times (AP says Las Vegas is number 15 on Amazon.com this week and Vintage Books has a "significant" reprinting in the works...Ah, then Hallelujah! To Be an American Writer!) I suspect that Horatio Alger's words must have gotten to mine. Alger always knew how to sell and Americans can't resist a salesmen come to sell them themselves, especially when it's a babyfucker, of the Super Eagle Scout Variety. An honest thief will never do.
Lord! I tried, O Lord, to teach them better, like Jesus says: they are not of this World, just as I am not of this World. But I'm out (once this plane takes off--they tell me we are waiting on Gidget) [note: Sandra Dee (April 23, 1942 – February 20, 2005) played Gidget 1959] and they're in for good, a fixed final part of the world that will never howl against it in rhythm with the newer, fouler plunders the Hearts of Evil have in store. I should have armed them somehow. I never thought it would be necessary...there was a time when it seemed rage would break like hard winter lightning over the mountains and a scouring rain would crack open the sky, to ruin the Minds of Fear, dissolve all the kin shrines of the rich and send them coursing like rivers into the flatlands...It was not hard to believe these things then, if you were young with eyes like two big fury wheels and a mind blown in all directions on the American Dream.
"France was a land, England was a people, but America, still having about it that quality of the idea, was harder to utter--it was the graves at Shiloh and the tired, drawn, nervous faces of its great men, and the country boys dying in the Argonne for a phrase that was empty before their bodies withered. It was a willingness of the heart."
-F. Scott Fitzgerald [note: short story "The Swimmers", 1929]
Indeed. And it's that Quality of the Idea that will do us all in one day, and already has... Bush needs only to cackle "Freedom" and textbooks fly open coast-to-coast inside our wicked, gutless minds, right back to the page where George Washington frees the slaves and hustles them across the Potomac in a Thanksgiving gravy boat built by B. Ross, from a cherry tree. They get you with the Idea, and the Idea (like Journalism, as Oscar Wilde once said), reigns forever and ever...and woe betide the doomed fool who dares get in its way. Nixon was a fiend, a dupe and an evil swindler, but Reagan was the Idea--even I could never hate Reagan right, because he had been a sportswriter...and for all his savage and howling buggery he gave the people what they wanted most of all--more than Life, Liberty, or the pursuit of Happiness, or whatever it was Tip O'Neill thought they wanted...no, Reagan, like Alger, knew that Americans will endorse any obscenity if it comes cloaked in a vision of themselves as they have never been. We are a nation of Gatsbys desperate to relive the past...only Gatsby actually fucked Miss Daisy a time or two, while Norman Rockwell was never anything more than a collective fever dream. No one loves Rockwell/Reagan's Shining City on a Hill more than the hate mongers and lynchers among us, those who clamor for death and weep with wonder as they suckle blood from the petrified tit of Innocent America. We are myth-mad, homesick vampires. And our heart's grown brutal from the fare.
Bush, of course, has none of Reagan's magnetic hokum...but he has Fear, and Fear needs the Idea to live. Backed against the wall a Good American (first cousin to the "Good German") will see Glory Stars and Sobbing Eagles popping like fizgigs on the air where any normal person--a Spaniard or a Bolivian, say--would see a firing squad...and Bush knows this, lives this, feasts on it. His America is Reagan's America without the phony hope...all cowering, all cringing, all bleating madness with only the Flag to protect us from the outside, menacing world. There is something of the Beast in the way his eyes glow with a dull light, as if the man has a Greyhound terminal inside him--then, as the subject turns to War...Torture...Murder...Terror...he leans forward and the eyes shock alive into twisted, ferocious glee. Bush's Dream is a fucking slit trench of a world and it is already halfway realized. But it could not happen without the Idea, the Dream that gets to us all so early. It is no easy thing to live in a country founded on a concept; because the concept was never realized, the nation is at the mercy of anyone who can hoist aloft an effigy...and what foul dust floats in the wake of our Dream? Iraq? Syria? Iran? We are junkies. There is no crime we will not consider to get a fix.
Cazart! I began writing all this with a point, I'm sure--something about Pat Buchanan and the Capitol Hill Hotel. But now we are ascending and I've got a plastic cup of the finest finger of Royal Salute $450 can buy. Below is Denver, dimming away, and the dark atlas of the plains, and somewhere is Lisl Auman in a cage for life for no reason but human stupidity...and who knows how many others, all the way back through history, rolling out in all directions across the dark republic in the night...
"Take one last look at the prison yard, goodbye Prison Grove Shine on all these broken lives, shine on shine the light on me."
-Warren Zevon: Prison Grove, 2003
"In prison, those things withheld from and denied to the prisoner become precisely what he wants most of all."
-Eldridge Cleaver: Soul On Ice, 1968
The flood is coming, I'm telling you.-Deep Throat
As far as I know, Nixon never learned the identity of Deep Throat: at least there is nothing about it in this fine, sleek in-flight magazine they've brought around with the cigarettes and pillows. It's an over-saturated, perfume-brittle Condé Nast affair and as queer a piece of lit as any I've seen, clocking 900 pages and reading something like a cross between Soaps in Depth and The Big Book of Mormon Genealogy. Here we have Dead Alumni cross-listed by Nation, Century, Manner of Death, Hobbies, and Career...and a Feature on Bob Hope called "Toilet Trading Beyond the Mortal Coil." The most common career, as it were, seems to be "Whore" (though Nixon, robbed again, didn't make that list). Vince Lombardi is currently said to be busy with "rough wooings by mean-minded mechanical arms on loan from General Motors," though previously he was "naked and knee-deep in angry voles." They have already inked out a place for the Pope under the heading "Vicious Polaks" and a feature-peek into his future daily doings, returned to Earth, as a box of Trojan Enz. I am cross-listed under Hobbies: Peacocks alongside American Writer Flannery O'Connor and Hobbies: Football with Richard Milhous Nixon, 37th President of the United States, a fellow fan of Grantland Rice, a Quaker, and a jabbering, pigfucking crook--Nixon currently resides at Number One Observatory Circle as the pacemaker that is keeping Dick Cheney alive.
What about Eternal Damnation?
Well...what do I know about a thing like that? I have already suffered hell with that trench-faced maniac, and I am a better man for it. It was enough to see his presidency come splitting apart stitch-by-crooked stitch as he paced the beach at San Clemente, moaning and brooding on life's simultaneous screws...and yes, to have had a part in it, too. I almost killed the motherfucker in Manchester, New Hampshire, leaning over the fuel tank of his jet with a king-size Marlboro butt burning out of the side of my mouth--and who knows what manner of weird paradise might have flowered on the Earth if I had killed Richard Nixon in '68? Was Nixon merely a symptom? Would setting him off like a ten-ton water buffalo even begin to squelch the rot? We would not have experienced Watergate...and at the time, Watergate was a glorious thing to see; I believed, at one point, that Nixon would stand trial, not just for his cover-up but for his very existence as a political monster--because by that time there were no questions left to ask but how he ever became the president at all...So the real defendant of that trial would have been the American Political Machine itself, visible at last. Just as Nuremberg forced Germany to confront Volksgemeinschaft as nothing more than the obsequious smile of a corpse, the Trial of Richard M. Nixon would have exposed all the swine...sucking fat and afterings from their fingers at the devoured heart of the American Dream...
Ho ho. So now you see why I did what I did. It was not a hot blast of Nixon-hatred that blew me to Washington, but Divine Afflatus Itself...my beat was the Death of the American Dream and seeing the whole jabbering whorehouse come down was to be a fine work of Art, far beyond Jay Gatz and his sundered longing at the edge of Long Island Sound. I can admit now, I guess, that Gatsby once gonged in my head night and day and I lashed away thousands of letters to publishers and Famous American Writers Everywhere declaring myself the fucking Coming of the New Star-Spanked Christ Child of Doomed American Prose, at the ready to write the next Gatsby...as soon as they sent me cash. Jesus! It was all some maniac fury to make the whole doomsday mess clear, and fast...so people could see, as it were, "what was on the end of every fork."
I see that our friends at Condé Nast make no mention of this. Under my name the word "drugs" appears 14 times and we score the trifecta of "hippies," "counterculture," and "Doonesbury," all in one foul sentence. Who are these thugs? Does the Columbia Journalism Review know about this? Is that little bastard Marty Beckerman writing for the kingdom-come trades now? I was almost the Governor of Samoa! Good God! Jimmy Carter offered to drop out of the '76 presidential race for me! And again...what manner of weirdness would wander the Earth if I had run in '76 and Jimmy hadn't? Strange to think...If Reagan had won that year he likely would have smashed up against the same ugly rock as Carter, and maybe the wreckage would have befouled the Goldwater Revolution for good...
Jesus, here's a revolting thought: am I responsible for Bush?
Or is the whole shitrain of history just the Fates at Play?
Baseball is great because anything can happen through the ninth inning. -Richard Nixon addressing a White House reception of the players in the 1969 Baseball All-Star Game, July 22, 1969
Indeed...and just a week before the Watergate break-in Nixon was whistling a tune in the Oval Office, busy at work with David Eisenhower on a list of the greatest baseball players of all time...which he then had printed as a gold-embossed tract and shelved alongside his famous Enemies List (and the lesser-known List of the Ugliest Women in Key Biscayne). I had a sort of relationship with Nixon for many years, and his love of sports was as high-humping crazy as my own. I have always maintained that I enjoyed our ride together one midnight in New Hampshire in 1968; Pat Buchanan and Ray Price were sitting up front and it was just me and the Dingbat at the hindmost, talking football--it was, indeed, "probably one of the weirdest things I've ever done."...But the pilot has just announced that we're 30 miles outside of our Destination...so is time now to admit that Dick and I never spoke about football that night: we talked about whores.
I was feeling a little paranoid and Nixon only exacerbated my gloom by waiting at least five minutes to speak. He was sweating so much I could smell the South Pacific on his collar.
"Hookers, Thompson," he said finally.
What? Good God! The bastard had lured me into some kind of brutal mano-a-mano McCarthy hearing! He was going to run down a list of treasons and then torch me and dump me in the woods! Terror fused my brain. I fumbled at the door handle. No! I thought. Fucking Christ!
"I'm under the impression you might know a little about that."
Jesus! What? It all made sense now: they'd seen my Levis and my ski jacket and singled me out as the kind of person who could summon hookers at all hours. "You crazy son of a bitch!" I answered. "Get your own goddamn hookers!"
Nixon laughed. "We're interested in a group of hookers connected to the DNC."
Indeed. And this is where Watergate began: a staffer at the DNC had been arranging slam-ups between Democratic kingpins and a parlor of whores operating out of the Columbia Plaza apartments. Even in 1968 Nixon was onto it, and he asked me for whatever information I had...which was nothing until I visited the Columbia Plaza a few weeks later with Buchanan, a group of visiting friends of Plimpton's from The Paris Review, a porcelain frog full of cocaine, two bags of grass, and sixty pellets of mescaline...And late into that godawful night, after over three hours of wrestling Buchanan off the ledge and into the bathtub, one of the girls came kabooming out of her room with eyes like Atomic Fireballs--she had the Fear so bad that her dentures hit the floor and I could see all four of her candy-flossed teeth bobbing on her gums...she was wailing about a pimp with corkscrew toenails and "a beard like God," who wore Kleenex tissues on his hands...
"And Mormons!" she shrieked. "He has Mormons! His fucking Mormons will get me with needles to kill the germs!"
"Howard Hughes?" I asked.
Ye Gods! Hughes was the dough behind the whole operation...and after Bobby Kennedy died Hughes snatched up one Lawrence O'Brien, gnat in the eye of Richard Nixon and future subject of a bungled burglary at the Watergate Hotel, to be his lobbyist and Grand Pimp of Columbia Plaza...meanwhile Hughes was busy greasing the other side, kiting mastodon-sized checks off to Nixon's sidecar Bebe Rebozo in Florida...and in return Nixon offered a monopoly on Las Vegas casinos to Hughes, scoffing off any whispers of "antitrust"...but Nixon was so crooked he narced even on himself, and for security he sent Plumbers out to fix O'Brien's phones (or as H.R. Haldeman said: "On matters pertaining to Hughes, Nixon sometimes seemed to lose touch with reality. His indirect association with this mystery man may have caused him, in his view, to lose two elections.")...Hughes was both funding the DNC and funding the slush CREEP used to weasel it...meanwhile pimp Phillip Bailley, of the Columbia Plaza Bailleys, was arrested for sexual pandering...and John Dean called the special prosecutor up for a debriefing and a look at Bailley's address books...
And who is in the address books? Besides the hookers?
Why, Mo Biner--John Dean's dearly betrothed.
Ah...but we will be landing soon...Do the details really matter? They were all thieves and evil swine. And I'm having a hard time remembering the specifics...they seem to be blearing and whipping away from me now. Outside the light on the wing is green and smearing out like weird honey on the bunching clouds that tremble and sing below, and I can just make out bright bits of Earth bathed in batches by the green...this is where my words are headed now at the speed of death, back to my crippled country...
And before I go I must say that it is no small thing to have a king like Muhammad Ali alive and hungry on the Earth in your lifetime. I have been thinking, these last few days, of Ali most of all...I don't know the exact mechanics by which a smash-up with a bullet fucks up your memory, but when I try now to see America I first see Ali. He was a souvenir of some other world, of This Nation Before the Fall...there was something gorgeous about him, some heightened sensitivity to the promises of life...and they wanted to fucking lock him up in the name of America.
America! Lord! I won't miss it for what it was: a fucking snakehouse where the crooks snatched up all the Beauty and garotted its aching joyful Throat before the song ever began. But I think I will miss what it was meant to be...
I tried to make it so. Watergate was my try. They will tell you it was Mark Felt, but they've never been anything but a pack of shiv-fisted liars anyway. I was Deep Throat, and Watergate was my Great Work. It is a testament to the pains and exactitude of Art that I only told Woodward the believable parts...Buchanan barely knew the extent of the thing, because Pat is fine and straight and the straight never know what's really happening. Not in Washington...Not in America. It takes a madman to burrow all the way down into its seedy heart.
My way of joking is to tell the truth. That's the funniest joke in the world. -Muhammad Ali
-Hunter the Headless Thompson Gunner (HST #3)
posted: Johnny St. Clair
Saturday, March 05, 2005"we're gonna be using aliases on this one..." http://www.pressurepressure.blogspot.com/2005/03/good-lord.html
-in the 4th paragraph: (AP says Las Vegas is number 15 on Amazon.com this week and Vintage Books has a "significant" reprinting in the works...Ah, then Hallelujah! To Be an American Writer!)
-5th paragraph: (once this plane takes off--they tell me we are waiting on Gidget)
[my note: Sandra Dee (April 23, 1942 – February 20, 2005) played Gidget, 1959]
These insertions in the two other blogs are here dated 3/2/05 & 3/5/05 respectively.
Together they demonstrate they were possibly written consequent to HST's demise whereas the document presented here: Tuesday, October 21, 2008
The Last Testament of Someone Apparently Named Hunter S. Thompson
(Intro originally written for L.A. RECORD)
does not by it's internal contents preclude the possibility of being written prior to his demise.
Rin Kelly did not answer my email for further information.
Indeed, the mysteries surrounding the estate of HST, the endless delays in publishing his finished unpublished works, the silent pursed lips of those in a position to know merely add to the Extended Enigma of that force reckoned as Hunter S. Thompson. And of course, speculations bordering on the eldritch...
"The poets are wrong of course […] But then poets are almost always wrong about facts. That's because they are not really interested in facts: only in truth: which is why the truth they speak is so true that even those who hate poets by simple and natural instinct are exalted and terrified by it."
-William Faulkner: The Town, 1957
"So vast, so limitless in capacity is man's imagination to disperse and burn away the rubble-dross of fact and probability, leaving only truth and dream."
-William Faulkner: Requiem for a Nun, 1950