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- DescriptionMarked for Death is a memoir of my becoming involved with a devil, being marked for death by that devil, being at war with that devil, and surviving that devil upon his unleashing--in the name of love --terror and death. It is a first-hand account of my experiences as his attorney, enemy, and postmortem target. It is also a modern, tribal version of an age-old story: Power tends to corrupt, said Lord Acton, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. The journey began in Redwood Valley, California, in 1970, when I self-recruited into a utopian movement called Peoples Temple, in order to pursue a Biblical ethic: And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. The leader of this utopian movement was James Warren Jones. On November 18, 1977, I testified in court and went to war against Jones. By then, he had moved to Guyana, South America, to a place called Jonestown. I turned on Jones because I'd learned he was denigrating to a five-year-old child, John Victor Stoen then in Jonestown, his mother, Grace. Even though I believed then that Jones was the biological father, and had promised to protect his paternal access, he was violating the moral law to hor thy mother, and superseded my promise. In December 1977, I came to realize that I was the biological father of the precious John Victor. During that one-year war for John Victor, I made two trips to the then wired country of Guyana, and in California I braced, when the doorbell rang, for a pistol blast to the chest. Finally, that journey took on a petrifying turn. On November 18, 1978, in the name of love, Jim Jones, in Jonestown, became the Orwellian devil and went for the kill. He killed 907 of his people by cyanide, and orchestrated the deaths, by gunfire at the nearby airstrip, of five other incents including US Congressman Leo Ryan. Among those he took out by the poison was six-year-old John Victor Stoen. Structurally, this book traces the development of Jim Jones, as I experienced it from 1967 through 1978, through thirteen stages. There are three possible explanations as to the character of Jim Jones on November 18, 1978. The first is that he was a good man who snapped. The second is that he was a sociopath-someone without a conscience, someone willing to do anything at all. The third, which I have come to accept, is that he fell into a more foreboding psychological category: malignant narcissist -someone who seeks to kill for n-biological reasons. Someone who is, in fact, a devil. On November 18, 1978, the day he died, Jim Jones exhorted vengeance on me, and prophesied, in the alternative, that I would destroy myself. I have three reasons for writing this book. The first is to present Jim Jones as a case study as to how leaders become corrupted by absolute power, how they use charisma and demagogic oratory to acquire that power, and how people lose critical resistance. The second reason is to give supporting evidence for Dr. M. Scott Peck's position that evil people can be dealt with only by raw power. Jones's use of systematic mind control in the encampment to get otherwise decent people to be willing to kill incents, and his follow-up orchestration of terror to impel them to do it at the airstrip, may be a modern template. It is my hope that governments will learn to wisely use raw power against terrorist leaders, and wisely use psychological power with their followers--so as to save priceless Civilization. My third reason for writing is to give hope to people who, like me, have made huge mistakes in their lives. Recovery is possible. After all of my unbelievable mistakes, it is a miracle that I should w find myself alive, sane, and vital. It is unquestionably due to something outside my control.
- Author BiographyOn June 26, 2000, Timothy Oliver Stoen resumed his career as a California prosecuting attorney. He is a graduate of Wheaton College and Stanford Law School. In 2010, Tim was nominated to the California District Attorneys Association as Prosecutor of the Year. In 2014, he was honored as one of the top wildlife prosecutors in the state, at a presentation attended by the governor. On September 16, 1961--one month after the infamous Berlin Wall was built--Tim went over to East Berlin, took photos of border guards, and got arrested. After twenty-one hours, he was released, but the empty faces of the people led him to view Communism as evil. In October 1965, Tim became a deputy DA for Mendocino County in Ukiah, California. On August 8, 1967, at a hiring interview for a new poverty law program, he met Jim Jones. In 1969 Tim took a poverty law job in a black section of Oakland, California. He defended, in a criminal case, a member of the Black Panther party. After joining Peoples Temple on January 1, 1970, Tim became the attorney for Jim Jones. In June he married 20-year-old Grace Lucy Grech. Their wedding invitation was utopian. On March 2, 1970, Tim became county counsel for Mendocino County. In May 1976, he became special voter fraud prosecutor for the San Francisco DA's office, and thereafter Head of Special Prosecutions. During 1976 and 1977, Tim defended Jim Jones as he was becoming a power broker in San Francisco, winning over Mayor George Moscone, Assemblyman Willie Brown, and columnist Herb Caen. On February 16, 1977, Tim left to go live with his son, John Victor, in Jonestown. After the killings, Jones's loyalists falsely charged that Tim had manipulated the 1975 mayoral election. Although Tim was cleared by the California Attorney General, the public stigma remained. For nine years after Jonestown, Tim experienced profound grief and guilt. On April 1, 1988, he found relief due, he says, to something totally outside my control. I am writing this book, says Tim, for three reasons. The first is to give warning signs about the next Jim Jones. The second is show that people who turn themselves over to evil--who become malignant narcissists --can only be dealt with by raw power. The third, and most important, is to give hope to people who, like me, have made huge mistakes in their lives, that recovery is possible. Tim lives in Mendocino, California, with his Swedish wife, Kersti ( Shesti ). It is the happiest of marriages.
- Author(s)Timothy Oliver Stoen
- PublisherCreatespace Independent Publishing Platform
- Date of Publication17/12/2015
- FormatPaperback / softback
- SubjectAutobiography: General
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintCreatespace Independent Publishing Platform
- Content Noteblack & white illustrations
- Weight517 g
- Width152 mm
- Height229 mm
- Spine20 mm
- Format DetailsTrade paperback (US),Unsewn / adhesive bound
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