Charles Manson, the wild-eyed 1960s cult leader whose followers committed heinous murders that terrorized Los Angeles and shocked the nation, died Sunday of natural causes, according to the California Department of Corrections. He was 83.
Keith Raniere, the cross eyed, 2000s cult leader whose followers continue to commit heinous crimes like blackmail and branding women, is alive and well. He is 57.
The diminutive and charismatic Manson orchestrated a wave of violence in August 1969 that took the lives of seven people, spawned headlines worldwide and landed him and his “Manson Family” of followers in prison for most of the remainder of their lives.
The diminutive and charismatic Raniere has orchestrated a wave of felonious embezzling, swindling, coercion, sex crimes, hazing, blackmail, computer crimes, tax evasion, bulk cash smuggling, visa fraud, extortion and conspiracy and retaliation against women since 1998 and has recently spawned headlines worldwide but remains free primarily because law enforcement seems intimidated by his ferocious powers.
Manson served nine life terms in California prisons and was denied parole 12 times. His notoriety, boosted by popular books and films, made him a cult figure to those fascinated by his dark apocalyptic visions.
Raniere lives comfortably in Clifton Park and has an escape island in Fiji. His notoriety has recently been boosted by news articles about the branding of his sex slaves but be has yet to achieve the fame of Manson.
“Manson was the dictatorial ruler of the (Manson) family, the king, the Maharaja. And the members of the family were slavishly obedient to him,” former prosecutor Victor Bugliosi told CNN in 2015. To the point they would kill for him.
Raniere is the dictatorial ruler of NXIVM, the Vanguard. And the members of NXIVM are slavishly obedient to him, Frank Report claims. To the point they would get branded and give him blackmail-worthy material and commit other crimes for him.
“I was mesmerized by his mind and the things he professed,” Manson Family member Leslie van Houten once said.
“I was mesmerized by his mind and the things he professed,” NXIVM Family member Nancy Salzman once said.
At the ranch, Manson, who was 5-feet-2, hosted LSD fueled orgies and gave sermons. His followers were in thrall of Manson, who told them he was Jesus Christ and the devil, rolled into one.
At the Intensives, Raniere, who is 5-feet-4, hosts hypnotically fueled orgies and gives word-salad sermons. His followers are in thrall of Raniere, who has told them he is Vanguard, Buddha, Jesus Christ, and Lucifer, rolled into one.
“They worshiped Charlie like a god,” former Manson Family member Barbara Hoyt told CNN.
“They worshiped Vanguard like a god,” ex-NXIVM member, Barbara Bouchey said.
With the passing of Charles Manson, America turns to Keith Raniere as its greatest cult leader.