Did Losing The Ability To Dream Kill Michael Jackson?

Ah, The Good Old Days For Michael, When Being Able To Sleep (And Dream) Was No Issue.
Ah, The Good Old Days For Michael, When Being Able To Sleep (And Dream) Was No Issue.

It’s amazing how, sometimes, all the pieces to a puzzle will suddenly fit together when the one missing piece is found. My first thought, as soon as I learned of Dr. Charles Cziesler’s testimony, is that this explains everything. Or, if not everything, it at least-to quote one of my favorite lines from the movie “Almost Famous”-“explains so much.” I have pasted below Alan Duke’s CNN article. Pay attention to the passages I’ve highlighted and underscored, especially when we take into account the symptoms Michael was displaying in the last weeks of his life according to many witnesses. Now, I will say this much, for what it’s worth-I believe at least a couple of those symptoms  have been exaggerated, either by the media or by those who genuinely believed there was reason for alarm when, perhaps, there wasn’t. I will get to those a bit later in the post. However, that still leaves a slew of other symptoms and what has become vastly obvious as a rapid deterioration  of Michael’s health over a two month period. With this being obvious from the reports, but with so little medical knowledge to go on (and so little known about the long-term effects of propofol use) I had began to theorize that perhaps what Michael was suffering was essentially a kind of slow poisoning process, as the toxins from these nightly treatments accumulated in his bloodstream and organs. While under ordinary circumstances, propofol metabolizes quickly, there is simply not enough known about its long-term effects if used consecutively for many nights. “Propofol abuse,” in other words, is still a relatively new concept, although its use as a muder and homicide weapon isn’t unheard of.

Karrie Denise Willoughby Murdered Her Stepfather With Propofol
Karrie Denise Willoughby Murdered Her Stepfather With Propofol

This, for example, was a local case in Alabama that made national headlines (and note Denise Willoughby was charged with capital muder!):

http://www.waff.com/story/12556977/prosecutors-believe-ider-woman-killed-stepfather-for-money

http://www.waff.com/story/12483123/ider-woman-arrested-for-poisoning-step-father

sleep2Now, with what Cziesler has testified, it seems my theory may not have been too far off the mark. Michael, it seems from all indications, was slowly dying as a result of Murray’s nightly “treatment” although I had underestimated the role that a lack of REM sleep was possibly playing in that demise. It may not have been the same as being poisoned, but considering the long term toll that Murray’s nightly regimen was taking on his body-and which, according to Cziesler, would have eventually killed him within the next few weeks, anyway-it could certainly be argued that what was happening to Michael in the last two months of his life amounted to the same thing as being poisoned. After all, according to the Merriam Webster definition, “poison” means “a substance that through its chemical action usually kills, injures, or impairs an organism.” In this case, the substance in question, propofol, was causing poisonous  harm by inhibiting a vital bodily function necessary to survival-sleep. And, in keeping with that definition, I don’t think it is far fetched to refer to Michael’s death as a case of lethal poisoning, in light of Dr. Cziezler’s explosive testimony.

Expert: Michael Jackson went 60 days without real sleep

By Alan Duke, CNN
updated 11:15 AM EDT, Mon June 24, 2013
Los Angeles (CNN) — Michael Jackson died while preparing to set a world record for the most successful concert run, but he unknowingly set another record that led to his death.
Jackson may be the only human ever to go two months without REM — rapid eye movement — sleep, which is vital to keep the brain and body alive. The 60 nights of propofol infusions Dr. Conrad Murraysaid he gave Jackson to treat his insomnia is something a sleep expert says no one had ever undergone.
“The symptoms that Mr. Jackson was exhibiting were consistent with what someone might expect to see of someone suffering from total sleep deprivation over a chronic period,” Dr. Charles Czeisler, a Harvard Medical School sleep expert, testified Friday at the wrongful-death trial of concert promoter AEG LIve.

The symptoms documented by e-mails among show producers and testimony from his chef, hairstylist and choreographers included his inability to do standard dances or remember words to songs he sang for decades, paranoia, talking to himself and hearing voices, and severe weight loss, Czeisler said.

“I believe that that constellation of symptoms was more probably than not induced by total sleep deprivation over a chronic period,” he testified.

Propofol disrupts the normal sleep cycle and offers no REM sleep, yet it leaves a patient feeling refreshed as if they had experienced genuine sleep, according to Czeisler.

If the singer had not died on June 25, 2009, of an overdose of the surgical anesthetic, the lack of REM sleep may have taken his life within days anyway, according Czeisler’s testimony Friday.

Lab rats die after five weeks of getting no REM sleep, he said. It was never tried on a human until Murray gave Jackson nightly propofol infusions for two months.

Translating that to a human, Czeisler estimated, Jackson would have died before his 80th day of propofol infusions. Murray told police he had given it to him for 60 nights before trying to wean him off it on June 22, 2009 — three days before his death.

Czeisler — who serves as a sleep consultant to NASA, the CIA and the Rolling Stones — testified Thursday that the “drug-induced coma” induced by propofol leaves a patient with the same refreshed feeling of a good sleep but without the benefits that genuine sleep delivers in repairing brain cells and the body.

“It would be like eating some sort of cellulose pellets instead of dinner,” he said. “Your stomach would be full, and you would not be hungry, but it would be zero calories and not fulfill any of your nutrition needs.”

Depriving someone of REM sleep for a long period of time makes them paranoid, anxiety-filled, depressed, unable to learn, distracted and sloppy, Czeisler testified. They lose their balance and appetite while their physical reflexes get 10 times slower and their emotional responses 10 times stronger, he said.

Those symptoms are strikingly similar to descriptions of Jackson in his last weeks, as described in e-mails from show producers and testimony by witnesses in the trial.

Jackson’s mother and children are suing AEG Live, contending that the company is liable in his death because it hired, retained or supervised Murray, who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter. They argue that the promoter pressured Murray to get Jackson to rehearsals while failing to get Jackson help despite numerous red flags warning that he was in trouble.

AEG Live lawyers contend that it was Jackson who chose, hired and supervised Murray, and their executives had no way of knowing about the dangerous propofol treatments administered in the privacy of Jackson’s rented mansion.

A very long question

Czeisler was back on the witness stand Friday to answer a question that was asked just as court ended Thursday. Jackson lawyer Michael Koskoff asked his expert what may also be a record-breaker in a trial: a 15-minute-long hypothetical question.

He was asked to render an opinion based on a long list of circumstances presented so far in the trial about Jackson’s condition and behavior, including:

• That Murray administered propofol to Jackson 60 consecutive nights before June 22, 2009.

• That Murray began to wean Jackson from propofol on June 22, 2009, and gave him none of the drug on June 23.

• That a paramedic who tried to revive him the day he died initially assumed he was a hospice patient.

• That show producers reported Jackson became progressively thinner and paranoid and was talking to himself in his final weeks.

• That the production manager warned that Jackson had deteriorated over eight weeks, was “a basket case” who he feared might hurt himself on stage and could not do the multiple 360-degree spins that he was known for.

• That show director Kenny Ortega wrote that Jackson was having trouble “grasping the work” at rehearsals and needed psychiatric help.

• That Jackson needed a teleprompter to remember the words to songs he had sung many times before over several decades.

• That show workers reported the singer was talking to himself and repeatedly saying that “God is talking to me.”

• That Jackson was suffering severe chills on a summer day in Los Angeles and his skin was cold as ice to the touch.

Jackson lawyers revised the question Friday morning after AEG Live lawyers objected to the information about Murray’s nightly propofol treatments, since it was derived only from the doctor’s statement to police after Jackson’s death. The judge previously ruled that statement inadmissible.

Instead, they brought up evidence that Murray ordered more than four gallons of propofol between April and June, which Czeisler said equaled 155,000 milliliters of the drug. An anesthesiologist uses between 20 and 30 milliliters to induce a coma for surgery, he said.

The expert testified that his review of Jackson’s medical records convinced him that the singer suffered a chronic sleep disorder that “was greatly exaggerated” while he was on tour or preparing for a tour.

Jackson died just two weeks before he would have traveled to London for the premiere of his “This Is It” comeback concerts, produced and promoted by AEG Live.

A lecture on sleep

Jurors appeared quite interested as Czeisler lectured them Thursday on his sleep research, including an explanation of circadian rhythm: the internal clock in the brain that controls the timing of when we sleep and wake and the timing of the release of hormones

“That’s why we sleep at night and are awake in the day,” he said.

Your brain needs sleep to repair and maintain its neurons every night, he said.

Blood cells cycle out every few weeks, but brain cells are for a lifetime, he said.

“Like a computer, the brain has to go offline to maintain cells that we keep for life, since we don’t make more,” he said. “Sleep is the repair and maintenance of the brain cells.”

An adult should get seven to eight hours of sleep each night to allow for enough sleep cycles, he said.

You “prune out” unimportant neuron connections and consolidate important ones during your “slow-eyed sleep” each night, he said. Those connections — which is the information you have acquired during the day — are consolidated by the REM sleep cycle. Your eyes actually dart back and forth rapidly during REM sleep.

“In REM, we are integrating the memories that we have stored during slow-eyed sleep, integrating memories with previous life experiences,” he said. “We are able to make sense of things that we may not have understood while awake.”

Learning and memory happen when you are asleep, he said. A laboratory mouse rehearses a path through a maze to get to a piece of cheese while asleep.

The area of a basketball player’s brain that is used to shoot a ball will have much greater slow-eyed sleep period since there is more for it to store, he said. Players shoot better after sleep.

The Portland Trailblazers consulted with him after they lost a series of East Coast basketball games, he said. He was able to give their players strategies for being sharper when traveling across time zones.

He’s worked with the Rolling Stones on their sleep problems, he said. Musicians are vulnerable since they are often traveling across time zones and usually “all keyed up” to perform at night, he said.

Czeisler developed a program for NASA to help astronauts deal with sleep issues in orbit, where they have a sunrise and sunset every 90 minutes.

Other clients include major industries that are concerned about night shift workers falling asleep on the job, the CIA, the Secret Service and the U.S. Air Force, he said.

Jackson lawyers argue that AEG Live should have consulted a sleep expert like Czeisler for Jackson instead of hiring Murray — a cardiologist — for $150,000 to treat the artist.

The trial ends its eighth week in a Los Angeles courtroom Friday. Lawyers estimate that the case will conclude in early August.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/21/showbiz/jackson-death-trial

I should add that there is a video of an interview with another sleep expert on the CNN website from which I took this article, which you can access via the above link. However, I think what she has to say about sleep deprivation and the advice intended for insomniac sufferers “like Michael Jackson” is pretty much useless, since all of the remedies she suggests are only effective for mild case insomnia. While good intentioned, perhaps, she is failing to take into account that Michael had, at some point, tried ALL of these remedies-and nothing had worked. Yes, the use of propofol may have been “beyond the pale,” as she put it. But this was, as most sleep experts have recognized, a “beyond the pale” case of insomnia. It was certainly not one that was going to be solved by a little exercise, or a cup of herbal tea.

Lack Of REM Sleep Means No Dreams-And, Eventually, Death.
Lack Of REM Sleep Means No Dreams-And, Eventually, Death.

One thing that struck me as sad, in a poetic kind of way, is that if we believe Cziesler’s testimony and put trust in his expertise, it all comes down to one, simple truth:

Michael Jackson may have died by losing his ability to dream.

Aside from the rejuvenation and restoration of brain cells and other vital organs, the characteristic most associated with REM sleep is dreaming. As Cziesler noted, it is during this phase of sleep that the subconscious is working out vital memories, helping the brain to process all of the information stored throughout the day, as well as life experiences. From the beginning of time, our ability to dream has always been a source of great fascination and mystery. We now know that it serves many important physical functions as well that are necessary for the maintenance of physical health and mental functioning.

If what we are hearing is true, and Michael had experienced no REM sleep for 60 days, it means that in all likelihood, he hadn’t dreamed in 60 days.

Obviously, I’m playing with this idea on two levels-the physical one, obviously, but also the deeper, more symbolic one. Michael Jackson, whose career owed so much to being one of the greatest dreamers of our time, may have lost that ability in more ways than one.

“You can kill the dreamer, but you can’t kill the dream”-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

However, leave it to another “doctor”-Dr. Conrad Murray-to prove that, just maybe, you can kill the dream as well.
Of course, I have heard that for many years after his 2005  trial, Michael continued to have nightmares about it-and about going to prison. Who knows, perhaps he subconsciously (or even consciously) sought to avoid slipping into that frightful world of dreams. Perhaps that was part of the appeal of propofol, the idea of being able to slip into a peaceful abyss without dreams; without torment. However, that is a tangent for which I’ll be here all day if I allow myself to indulge it. Perhaps for another blog.
To get back to the question at hand, however: Does propofol actually inhibit REM sleep? I did find at least a couple of medical articles that seem to dispute Cziesler’s claims. I am sorry I was not able to make the second a clickable link.
www.researchgate.net/…sleeppropofol…/3deec51a6356cad6e1.pdf
However, this is a passage from that second article. We have to keep in mind that the study of propofol’s effects on sleep patterns has only been tested on rats, not humans, and there are still many mitigating factors that can affect the results of those studies:

In principle, a period of anesthesia might modify the
homeostatic regulation of sleep debt in three ways. For
example, general anesthesia might be a permissive state
that allows normal sleep homeostatic processes to occur.
An anesthetized organism would thus repay sleep
debt built up during previous wakefulness and emerge
less sleep-deprived after an anesthetic than before. Alternatively,
anesthesia might progressively increase sleep
debt in a fashion similar to wakefulness. Prolonged anesthetics
would then induce a sleep-deprived state. Finally,
anesthesia might represent a state unlike either
sleep or waking, in which sleep debt neither accumulates
nor dissipates. Organisms emerging from anesthesia
would then have the same degree of sleep deprivation as
when they were initially anesthetized.

And, from the same article:

Delayed, propofol-induced effects on sleep may also
have altered the interpretation of our results. In humans,
the combination of inhaled anesthetics and surgery results
in initial suppression of REM sleep, followed by a
rebound increase on the second or third postoperative
day.

However, at this point, I was getting a bit confused by the findings. Several medical sources seemed to dispute Cziesler’s claims, giving the impression that anesthesia can produce the same recovery from sleep deprivation as natural sleep:

Anesthesiology. 2004 Jun;100(6):1419-26.

Recovery from sleep deprivation occurs during propofol anesthesia.

Source

Department of Anesthesia and Critical Care, The University of Chicago, Illinois 60637, USA. atung@airway.uchicago.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Some neurophysiologic similarities between sleep and anesthesia suggest that an anesthetized state may reverse effects of sleep deprivation. The effect of anesthesia on sleep homeostasis, however, is unknown. To test the hypothesis that recovery from sleep deprivation occurs during anesthesia, the authors followed 24 h of sleep deprivation in the rat with a 6-h period of either ad libitum sleep or propofol anesthesia, and compared subsequent sleep characteristics.

METHODS:

With animal care committee approval, electroencephalographic/electromyographic electrodes and intrajugular cannulae were implanted in 32 rats. After a 7-day recovery and 24-h baseline electroencephalographic/electromyographic recording period, rats were sleep deprived for 24 h by the disk-over-water method. Rats then underwent 6 h of either propofol anesthesia (n = 16) or ad libitum sleep with intralipid administration (n = 16), followed by electroencephalographic/electromyographic monitoring for 72 h.

RESULTS:

In control rats, increases above baseline in non-rapid eye movement sleep, rapid eye movement sleep, and non-rapid eye movement delta power persisted for 12 h after 24 h of sleep deprivation. Recovery from sleep deprivation in anesthetized rats was similar in timing to that of controls. No delayed rebound effects were observed in either group for 72 h after deprivation.

CONCLUSION:

These data show that a recovery process similar to that occurring during naturally occurring sleep also takes place during anesthesia and suggest that sleep and anesthesia share common regulatory mechanisms. Such interactions between sleep and anesthesia may allow anesthesiologists to better understand a potentially important source of variability in anesthetic action and raise the possibility that anesthetics may facilitate sleep in environments where sleep deprivation is common.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15166561

(The free full text of this article is available, btw).

sleep6But then, I found this important article that was published, shortly after Michael’s death, in the July 2009 issue of Science Life. This was an interview with the same experts who conducted the studies linked to above, and thankfully, was written in layman’s terms (make that plain English!) for those of us who aren’t doctors or medical experts. I will link to the entire article, but to save time and space for right now, let’s just excerpt the passage that concerns our present purpose most:

Q: But does that mean that propofol sedation is the same as sleep?

Tung: Propofol sedation is nothing at all like sleep. Sleep is reversible with external stimulation – if you shake somebody, they wake up. Propofol is obviously not like that. Sleep shows a characteristic pattern of EEG behavior, while propofol does not. (For instance, Tung explains, cyclical patterns of REM and nonREM sleep are not observed during propofol sedation, in rats or humans) Sleep, in general, preserves blood pressure and the ability to breathe and propofol does not. They are very different states.

Q: All of your propofol research has been in rats, has there been any research done in humans along these lines?

Tung: No, there has not. It does appear that humans given propofol for prolonged periods do not appear to be sleep deprived when you turn off the drug. No data exist to support the specific use that has been alleged in the Michael Jackson case (using propofol as a treatment for insomnia),. Use to facilitate regular sleep is not at all safe. The benefit is way outstripped by the risk…if there is any benefit.

Nobody is advocating its use outside a hospital for patients that are not critically ill. That is outside the boundaries of currently accepted care.

http://sciencelife.uchospitals.edu/2009/07/31/propofol-a-dangerous-kind-of-rest/

Ah, so now it all starts to make sense, and goes right back to exactly what Cziezler said:

“It would be like eating some sort of cellulose pellets instead of dinner. Your stomach would be full, and you would not be hungry, but it would be zero calories and not fulfill any of your nutrition needs.”-Dr. Charles Cziesler

In other words, a person who goes under with the use of propofol will wake up refreshed, since the anesthesia has mimicked the effects of sleep. For most of us, there are no long term consequences for this effect since our experience with anesthesia is generally limited to surgical procedures, and not as a nightly aid to induce sleep. But now imagine you ate those pellets every night for dinner, for 60 nights or longer. You would continue to feel full, but sooner or later, your weight would be dropping drastically, your muscles would start to atrophy;  your vital organs would start to shut down.
It is a little like anytime we rely too much on a temporary solution to fix what is actually a long-term problem. We know that if an obese person ate those pellets every night for dinner, they would lose weight. But they would also die.
As for being able to dream while under anesthesia, I do know from experience that it is technically possible. I had Diprivan during my appendectomy in 2009. All I remember is that I was talking away to the nurse about my job, and then I drifted into a very fleeting dream that involved Brad Pitt (I kid you not; I can’t think of any better way to pass the time during an appendectomy!). Next thing I knew, I was awake; my inflamed appendix, gone.
So from my own experience, I know it is possible to dream while being under propofol, which might suggest that I must have been experiencing some degree of REM sleep.  However, that isn’t necessarily the case.
The four stages outside of REM sleep are called non-REM sleep (NREM). Although most dreams do take place during REM sleep, more recent research has shown that dreams can occur during any of the sleep stages. Tore A. Nielsen, Ph.D., of the Dream and Nightmare Laboratory in Montreal, refers to this as “covert REM sleep” making an appearance during NREM sleep. Most NREM dreams, however, don’t have the intensity of REM dreams.
Judging by what I experienced, I would say this was a case of NREM dreaming. All I can tell you now is that I know the dream involved Brad Pitt. But beyond that, the details are very fleeting and fuzzy-a good indication that I was not experiencing true REM sleep.
All Experts Agree That This Was A Completely Unprecedented Medical Experiment. Michael Was Used As A Guinea Pig In The Worst Way Possible.
All Experts Agree That This Was A Completely Unprecedented Medical Experiment. Michael Was Used As A Guinea Pig In The Worst Way Possible.

And let’s not forget that Michael was being put under for 60 consecutive days (if we go by Murray’s police report). As Cziesler pointed out, there are simply no other human experiences by which to gauge the effect this would have had on his mind and body. Michael was being subjected to a completely unprecedented medical experiment.

“I have watched him deteriorate in front of my eyes over the last 8 weeks. He was able to do multiple 360 spins back in April. He’d fall on his ass if he tried now,” production manager John “Bugzee” Houghdahl wrote in an e-mail to AEG Live CEO Randy Phillips on June 19, 2009.
Keeping in mind Houghdahl’s email, let’s go back to something Cziesler said about REM sleep-deprived individuals.

“They lose their balance…their physical reflexes get ten times weaker…”

It’s sad to think of Michael Jackson losing his ability to perform his dazzling 360 spins. This was not only one of his signature dance moves, but also his absolute favorite to perform. In Dancing the Dream, he described it thus:

“I throw my head back and a swirling nebula says, ‘Fast now, twirl!’

Grinning, ducking my head for balance, I start to spin as wildly as I can. This is my favorite dance, because it contains a secret. The faster I twirl, the more I am still inside. My dance is all motion without, all silence within. As much as I love to make music, it’s the unheard music that never dies. And silence is my real dance, though it never moves. It stands aside, my choreographer of grace, and blesses each finger and toe.”-Michael Jackson, excerpted from “Dance of Life.”spin

It is even sadder in light of the fact that what Cziesler is referring to is irreversible damage. Brain cells are not an on again, off again switch. Once they are damaged, it is irreparable. As we saw in This Is It, Michael was certainly still capable of being an amazing dancer, but as pointed out in testimony, we don’t see him performing any 360 spins. Many have pointed out that his dancing seemed a bit “off” but I had always just chalked it up to the fact that this was rehearsal footage and that Michael was not dancing full out (to my knowledge, he never did in rehearsals; he didn’t need to). Just as he was always saying, “I need to conserve my throat” he also very seldom pushed himself to full capacity in rehearsal. People who wanted to be nitpicky picked on a lot of things for the wrong reasons. His sidestep glides, for example (or, as some call it, the side moonwalk) look clumsy in the film for a good reason. Look at his feet. He is wearing hard soled street shoes in those segments-shoes with heels, in fact. Not his customary penny loafers, which gave him the much needed agility and traction for those moves. This may also explain why there was no moonwalk in Billie Jean (again, aside from the fact that this was only a rehearsal run through).

Michael's Billie Jean Routine In This Is It. Note That He Is Wearing Hard Soled Street Shoes, Not His Customary Penny Loafers. It's Absurd To Think That This Didn't Impede His Ability To Throw Spins And Moonwalks Into The Number.
Michael’s Billie Jean Routine In This Is It. Note That He Is Wearing Hard Soled Street Shoes, Not His Customary Penny Loafers. It’s Absurd To Think That This Didn’t Impede His Ability To Throw Spins And Moonwalks Into The Number.

Also, there was much unnecessary over analyzing of some of his “manic” looking moves during the Human Nature segment. (Remember when everyone was wondering if “The Penguin” was a new dance move he was planning for the concerts?). I can sum up the truth about those moves in just a few chosen words: It’s called HAVING FUN. In typical MJ fashion, Michael was cutting up and teasing. It may have looked a bit manic, but these were never moves he seriously intended to use.

But again, This Is It can not be relied on as an entirely accurate depiction of what his last rehearsals were like. What we saw was the best of the best, culled over roughly about two nights’ worth of decent performances and a few bits and pieces sliced in from other good moments. When I stop to think about it, it’s really true that we don’t ever see him performing any of his routinely most challenging dance moves. There are no spins, no moonwalks, and only a few clumsily executed glides. Of course, to offset that, we still have a killer Smooth Criminal routine that is spot on flawless, a well executed Thriller routine (in which he does dance full out) and that amazing Beat It segment which required multiple jumps, spins, and falling on the floor-all of which he manages to do as well as the dancers half his age. He also looked very good during the Jackson 5 routine, although here we are talking dance moves he had known intrinsically since childhood, so perhaps that is no surprise.

In short, just because we don’t see these moves in This Is It doesn’t mean that he couldn’t perform them. But that is also no reason to dispute the validity of the eyewitness claims, those like Houghdahl who were witnessing what they specifically described as a measurable physical decline between April and June.

Now, let’s go back to Cziesler’s own words again:

” They lose their balance and appetite while their physical reflexes get 10 times slower and their emotional responses 10 times stronger.”

Many of the witnesses have claimed that Michael exhibited signs of increased paranoia during this period. However, I always take that term “paranoia” with a grain of salt. It’s an overused term; one of the media’s favorite catch phrases when describing Michael’s more extreme fears and anxieties. The bottom line is that much of the time he had damn good reason to be “paranoid,” if that’s what we wish to call it. In my estimation, it cannot truly be paranoia if a person has legitimate and valid reasons to be fearful. Paranoia is a psychological term used to describe exaggerated or imaginary fears and anxieties about being harmed. I don’t think Michael’s concerns were necessarily unfounded ones. But the effects of this slow poisoning could well have been working on his physiological state, making his emotional responses to such stimuli-whether real or imagined-much more intense. You know how we always joke about how overly emotional women are on their periods, due to the hormonal imbalances during that time? Well, take that and multiply it several times over, and I believe you have something very much akin to what Michael was experiencing during those weeks, only the cause was not hormonal, but due to very real and dangerous chemical changes going on in his brain. This would have made any amount of stress almost impossible to deal with (let alone the hugely monumental stress he was being put under with these shows and rehearsals) and any conflict apt to set him on edge, regardless of how serious or petty the actual offense.

“After he got off the phone, he would cry,” Prince Jackson testified. “He would say ‘They’re going to kill me, they’re going to kill me.'”-From Prince Jackson’s testimony.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/26/showbiz/jackson-death-trial

I want to make it clear that I am not in any way trying to diminish or invalidate why Michael may have been making these claims. I am only pointing out that what Prince testified, along with what other witnesses have said, seems to bear out that Michael was in a highly emotional and agitated state throughout these weeks in question, which again is another symptom pointing to Cziesler’s theory that lack of REM sleep was severely affecting his judgement during these weeks. Perhaps Michael did feel they were trying to kill him, but I believe that had he not been hampered by the effects this poison was wrecking on his body and mind, he would have been able to think more clearly and rationally and would have been able to exercise better judgment in how to deal with those pressures.

Prince Described His Father As Excited About The Shows, But Often Emotional Over The Pressure He Was Being Put Under. "He Would Sit And Cry" After Phone Conversations With Randy Phillips. Could Lack of REM Sleep Have Been Contributing To His Emotional Distress?
Prince Described His Father As Excited About The Shows, But Often Emotional Over The Pressure He Was Being Put Under. “He Would Sit And Cry” After Phone Conversations With Randy Phillips. Could Lack of REM Sleep Have Been Contributing To His Emotional Distress?

And what about these reported symptoms?

• That show director Kenny Ortega wrote that Jackson was having trouble “grasping the work” at rehearsals and needed psychiatric help.

• That Jackson needed a teleprompter to remember the words to songs he had sung many times before over several decades.

As Cziesler pointed out, a severely REM-impaired individual, as Michael surely was at this point, would be distracted and unable to concentrate, and certainly memory- impaired. It’s interesting to note that Kenny Ortega was requesting psychiatric help, however, without taking into consideration that there may have been very possible PHYSICAL reasons for this lack of focus. This distinction is important, because the one still carries with it the stigma of Michael’s “issues” having a psychological basis, rather than a physical one-especially when we consider that his physical decline at this point was due to the “care” he was supposedly receiving in order to do AEG’s bidding. This is also why Dr. Cziesler’s testimony is so crucial to our understanding of what was really going on with Michael at the end.

But how much should we really make of the memory issue? I have listened to many live MJ performances-including several from the peak of his career-in which he appears to “scat” his way through hits like “Beat It,” often substituting nonsensical lines in place of the actual lyrics. He would often improvise this way as he shaped the songs (his demos bear this out) and sometimes, in concert, he would fall back on this sort of improvisation. I am sure that Kenny Ortega and those who had worked with him for years would know the difference, but I think it is worth mentioning since we know how the media has always loved to exaggerate these negative reports.

For example, very recently when I was researching for a post about Michael’s tendency to write motivational notes to himself-those notes he would often write on his bathroom mirrors, or would stick in various spots throughout his house-I found this snarky piece from The Daily Mail. Of course, they not only referred to the notes as “bizarre” (even though they were positive and inspirational) but made special mention of what was apparently a “reminder” to include We Are The World in his setlist. Here is the excerpt from that article:

Also included was a reminder about singing his hit ‘We Are The World’ during his show.

The source said: ‘It’s worrying that he had to write reminders about things as obvious as these while he was rehearsing for his tour.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1213133/Michael-Jackson-leaves-bizarre-messages-reveal-state-mind-day-died.html

However, I can assure you there was nothing at all unusual in posting such a reminder! What this article does NOT mention is the fact that We Are The World-despite being one of Michael’s biggest hits-was never a staple of his live shows. It was never a song he routinely performed, in all of the twenty-four years since he had recorded it in 1985 and out of three world tours since. Therefore, the idea that he just might need a post-it sticky to remind himself to insert We Are The World  into his setlist is really not that far-fetched. After over twenty years of performing a live setlist that seldom had few variations, it would make sense that he might have the need to post a reminder that a deviation was planned. Anyone with any familiarity of Michael’s live shows would know this (but, of course, this is typical of the kind of lazy journalism that permeates the profession today; they just assume that their readers would take it for granted that We Are The World was a staple of his live shows. Who’s going to fact check a thing like that unless they are a diehard fan, right?).

I Posted This Pic Just To Lighten The Mood. However, It Comes With A Serious Message. You See, The Media Loves The Image Of Michael As A Basketcase...As Long As They Can Make It Clear That He Was A Basketcase Of His Own Doing.
I Posted This Pic Just To Lighten The Mood. However, It Comes With A Serious Message. You See, The Media Loves The Image Of Michael As A Basketcase…As Long As They Can Make It Clear That He Was A Basketcase Of His Own Doing.

These kinds of stories have been repeated and circulated endlessly, all with the intention of creating a portrait of someone who was a “basketcase” in his last days-but always, a “basketcase” due to his own making.  Seldom have any physical factors, other than addiction and drug dependency, been considered as possible reasons for these symptoms. Again, this is a reason why Dr. Cziesler’s testimony is crucial.

And what about the reported delusions, the ramblings, the comments that “God is talking to me?”

 That show workers reported the singer was talking to himself and repeatedly saying that “God is talking to me.

Well, I stated my feelings on that back when I posted this piece:
To those of us who are very religious and/or spiritual, it can mean something very different to say “God is talking to me” than it may for the average agnostic. My personal belief is that Michael was being called home, and perhaps it was due to his heightened state of emotional awareness during this time that he was attuned to it. But still, we can’t overlook the fact that Michael’s physical condition, after more than 60 days without restorative REM sleep, could have also played a role in creating auditory hallucinations. The symptoms would mimic those of schizophrenia for one, simple reason-it is the same parts of the brain that are being affected. I suppose it is like trying to unravel the mystery of “The White Light” and the hearing of loved ones’ voices when we pass on. Science can-and has-come up with many plausible theories as to why the dying brain experiences these phenomena. Yet, for all the scientific explanations, these things still defy our understanding. Or at least, our complete understanding.
In Michael’s case, two forces were happening inside him simultaneously. While the poison was shutting down brain cells and slowly destroying vital functioning, it was also giving him a sense of heightened consciousness. This is the same phenomenon that happens with the terminally ill, as their spirit selves begin to “disconnect” from their physical selves. I think it is at least one part physical (because the brain is shutting down) but many parts spiritual, and is simply one of those things we will never fully understand-at least, not until we experience it ourselves, and by then, it’s too late to turn back and enlighten those we’ve left behind.
And what about the oft-reported chills and shaking?
 That Jackson was suffering severe chills on a summer day in Los Angeles and his skin was cold as ice to the touch.
This is a symptom that has been reported many times, by many witnesses. But the cause of the chills has usually, invariably, been played out as some sort of drug withdrawal, most notably Demerol.  This was a staple, in fact, of Conrad Murray’s defense:
Karen Faye has been one of those insistent on the fact that Michael was always cold and had chills during his last weeks of rehearsal:

Q. You previously testified on those days Mr. Jackson looked good?

A. I didn’t say he LOOKED good. There’s no way somebody could look good that quickly. His rehearsal was better, sir.

Q. He had better rehearsal o the 23rd 24th but you still thought he was too thin?

A. Absolutely, sir. He was cold, very cold.

On almost all days at the end of June Michael was cold, but on June 19th he was cold like ice cubes:

‘That was the day that Michael was cold like ice cubes, he was shivering and shaking and couldn’t get warm. I got my space heater and put it next to him and wrapped him in a blanket.”

Well, it is interesting to note that Karen Faye’s testimony also seems to support that Michael’s physical deterioration really began in April, the month that Conrad Murray began treating him!

Karen Faye saw Michael in April 2009 and though he was very excited and upbeat she noticed that he was on the thin side. But in those days she still hoped he had time enough to build the body mass.

However the first time Michael came on stage, which was two months later, she saw the difference even from the way he looked in April.

A. At the beginning time frame he seemed happy I was with him, I’d touch him up and he’d seemed relatively normal.

Q. When did it change?

A. Well, I felt the turning point happened when he got on the stage.

Panish: So you told us about the skin and you told us about the weight.

Karen: His eyes were very dry.

Q. Anything else, you told us about him repeating himself?

A. For instance, whenever before he’d get on the stage for a scene. He would say make sure you stand where I can see you and he would say it repeatedly.

http://vindicatemj.wordpress.com/2013/05/18/aeg-jackson-trial-days-8-and-9-karen-fayes-sad-thriller-silenced-by-the-press/

I am not so sure, however,  that the repetition should have been a cause for alarm. I am not claiming to know more than Karen Faye, who was with him for almost thirty years. But Michael, from what I gather, had always a slight OCD tendency to repeat things. This was all a part of his well known perfectionism, which I think in itself was a manifestation of it, but in a positive way. (However, the fact that it could also drive those around him a little batty is well documented).karen
I absolutely believe that all of the witnesses who have reported that he was cold to the touch and having chills must be telling the truth. Even Paris said that “Daddy was always cold” and spoke of him sitting by the fire to keep warm. This was reported in LaToya’s book, so take it for what it’s worth. But I believe her, as this also fits into everything else that has come to light since the trial began.
However, I also believe there has been some exaggeration of this symptom, most notably regarding the baggy Ed Hardy outfits Michael wore on his last night of rehearsal. Both fans and journalists have often pointed this out as irrevocable “proof” that Michael must have been freezing during rehearsals. Otherwise, why would someone in their right mind wear a jacket and sweater and layers of clothing to rehearse a demanding dance number, in the heat of an LA summer?
The Baggy, Oversized Ed Hardy Outfits That Michael Wore For The Thriller And Earth Song Dress Rehearsals Have Often Mistakenly Been Cited As Evidence That He Was Freezing During Rehearsals. The True Reason Was Far More Practical, And Humdrum
The Baggy, Oversized Ed Hardy Outfits That Michael Wore For The Thriller And Earth Song Dress Rehearsals Have Often Mistakenly Been Cited As Evidence That He Was Freezing During Rehearsals. The True Reason Was Far More Practical, And Humdrum
But the explanation is actually a simple one. These were, after all, full dress rehearsals-a fact that both the media and many fans (who should know better) conveniently often ignore. If we look back at how Michael routinely dressed for his live performances of Thriller and Earth Song, it’s obvious that both of these numbers always called for multiple layers of heavy clothing. Thriller routinely called for a jacket, even during the full out dance segment, and for Earth Song, Michael typically wore many layers of heavy clothing, including a jacket and sweater. It would make sense that in dress rehearsal, he would want to get a feel for how these items moved; how they felt on his body. And yes, I’m sure those outfits got awfully warm beneath the stage lights. But acclimating himself to those outfits would have been an important part of the rehearsal process.
Michael's Live Performances Of Earth Song And Thriller Called For Many Layers Of Clothing. Acclimating Himself To Performing In These Outfits Would Have Been An Important Part Of Dress Rehearsal.
Michael’s Live Performances Of Earth Song And Thriller Called For Many Layers Of Clothing. Acclimating Himself To Performing In These Outfits Would Have Been An Essential Part Of Dress Rehearsal. It Did Not Mean He Was Freezing.
I guess this is all a way of saying that I do believe there has been some degree of exaggeration in reporting Michael’s symptoms, but on the whole, I believe that when you have this many witnesses who keep repeating the same thing, it has to have some validity.  We know for a fact that concern over Michael’s health and what appeared to many as a striking and obvious decline that occurred over a brief, two month period was a source of concern (not necessarily a concern for him or his well being, but a concern nevertheless).
The reason why Dr. Cziesler’s testimony is so crucial to our understanding of what really happened to Michael Jackson is because, for too long, the media has used these symptoms as an excuse to paint Michael as a “basketcase” in his last weeks. These symptoms have been reported, scrutinized, and analyzed-but until now, with no real validity, insight, or even compassion as to what may have actually been the true culprit behind them. This has given haters like Diane Dimond cart blanch to call him “a basketcase of his own making,” as she did in this USA Today article:

Those who are sympathetic to AEG’s side like to portray a picture of a ruined superstar who created his own tragedy. However, I want to stress again-even though I detest the nasty headlines, the mud slinging, and the turmoil as much as anyone else-that this is why this trial needs to happen. Dr. Cziesler, I am convinced, has supplied a crucial missing piece to the puzzle. We knew Michael was displaying these symptoms, but until now, we had every crazy theory in the book except, perhaps, the simplest one that made the most sense.

Our Banner Image, From The "Beat It" Performance IN TII, Shows A Strong And Confident Michael In One Of The Film's Best Moments, The High Energy Finale Where Michael Outshines Dancers Half His Age. But What Was The Real Story Of What Was Happening To Him Those Two Months? We've Heard A Lot Of Crazy Theories, But The Answer Closest To The Truth May Have Been The Simplest All Along.
Our Banner Image, From The “Beat It” Performance IN TII, Shows A Strong And Confident Michael In One Of The Film’s Best Moments, The High Energy Finale Where Michael Outshines Dancers Half His Age. But What Was The Real Story Of What Was Happening To Him Those Two Months? We’ve Heard A Lot Of Crazy Theories, But The Answer Closest To The Truth May Have Been The Simplest All Along.
Ultimately, what this trial is all about is deciding not who was responsible, but who was most responsible in allowing this to happen. But it’s a comfort now to know that, if Michael was acting and behaving in all these manner of strange and bizarre ways in his last weeks, it wasn’t because of drug withdrawal, or drug use, or mental illness, or any other crazy theory.  It was because he was being systematically poisoned by the very doctor hired to look after him. And in light of Cziesler’s testimony, I don’t know what else you would call a knowing experiment that would deprive him of two months’ worth of REM sleep-a medical necessity for maintaining physical and mental health. And, more than that, a necessity for life itself. This goes much deeper than Michael’s personal choices or demands, and even deeper than negligence on Murray’s part. This is about willful administration of a treatment regimen that would have resulted in death even had it not been for Murray’s carelessness that morning, which merely expedited the process. Are we supposed to believe that Murray, a doctor, knew nothing about this? Did he watch Michael displaying  all of these symptoms, day after day,while willingly continuing this crazy experiment?
Yes. He did.
In a nutshell, it’s the whole reason we’re here. And why Michael is not.
Let’s look again at some of what came from Prince Jackson’s testimony:
Prince said his dad was excited about his upcoming tour, produced by AEG Live, as was he, as he’d only seen him perform once. However, he said his dad would come home from rehearsals upset with AEG’s CEO, Randy Phillips, and his former manager, Dr. Tohme Tohme. “He would cry,” Prince said. “He would say, ‘They’re going to kill me. They’re going to kill me.'” Once, the singer became so enraged that he cursed out Tohme, Prince added. “[And] he never fought. He was too kind to fight,” he said. Prince also added that he was frightened of Phillips, who often spoke to Dr. Conrad Murray to in “hushed whispers.”
What strikes me as most sad about the above passage is that here was Michael, still excited to perform after a lifetime in show business, but with his excitement marred by enormous stress, undue anxiety, fear of, and frustration with those who were in charge and running the show.
Michael, The Little Boy From Gary, Indiana Who Had Dreamed So Big, Began To Die The Day His Dreams Stopped-Literally
Michael, The Little Boy From Gary, Indiana Who Had Dreamed So Big, Began To Die The Day His Dreams Stopped-Literally

The little boy who used to kneel by his bedroom window at night in the little house in Gary, Indiana, dreaming those enormous dreams that had carried him to the pinnacles of stardom, had, in fact, lost his ability to dream.

I am convinced now that, although his body may have survived an additional two months from the onset of Murray’s treatment, Michael Jackson really began to die the night that his dreams died.

That was the day in April of 2009 when Conrad Murray ordered four gallons of propofol-enough to ensure that Michael Jackson would never dream again.

UPDATE: 07/03/13: Another testimony has shed some interesting new light that is somewhat related to this topic. I will comment more when I have time to write in more detail:

http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/gossip/jacko-abusing-pain-meds-comeback-tour-deal-doctor-article-1.1389683

43 thoughts on “Did Losing The Ability To Dream Kill Michael Jackson?”

  1. ‘But it’s a comfort now to know that, if Michael was acting and behaving in all these manner of strange and bizarre ways in his last weeks, it wasn’t because of drug withdrawal, or drug use, or mental illness, or any other crazy theory. It was because he was being systematically poisoned by the very doctor hired to look after him. And in light of Cziesler’s testimony, I don’t know what else you would call a knowing experiment that would deprive him of two months’ worth of REM sleep-a medical necessity for maintaining physical and mental health. And, more than that, a necessity for life itself. This goes much deeper than Michael’s personal choices or demands, and even deeper than negligence on Murray’s part.’

    Raven, thank you soo much for your thoughtful and so well researched blogs. Not living in US (thank goodness in many ways, as I am not explosed to all the horrid media stuff) I am very grateful for your so well balanced comments on what is going on – like the one I have pasted above. Yes indeed, now that we have this expert testimony, so much of what happened to Michael in those last 2 months makes sense, and to some degree takes away some of the pain of our loss. It is great to know that Michael was excited and looking forward to the shows, but so very sad to know that his last 2 months were mostly not enjoyable, and indeed often hell for him.

    I didn’t comment on the post about the awful treatment of Michael before the UK press exhibition of Michael – that is all I can think to call it!! – as I was far too upset, and still am!!1 I just hope that AEG are bought to book for the whole debarcle, but at least we know now how awful Phillips, Gongware and others were to Michael, not that any of it will bring back the treasure that the world has lost, but it will feel that there is some justice for Michael after the trials of this trial. At first I was horrifed that Katherine did it, but now like you, I can see that actually it is better for the truth to come out, because once again it has indeed vindicated our hero!!

    1. Speaking of what is going in in the UK press, it seems every time I manage to get up a post on one topic, the next big, breaking MJ story has already taken over the headlines, lol. Well, as I always say, I’m only one person here. But I had planned to pick up with my continuation of the Wade Robson series of articles this week, anyway.Seems like the timing will be perfect, if nothing else.

      This is all part of the same conspiracy, but exactly where this has originated, with who and why, remains the mystery. I think most of us have an idea, but we can’t prove it. I said from the get-go that these other stories would come out of the woodwork in order to “substantiate” Wade’s claims. Now, supposedly, he is trying to contact this PI, according to one story. I was just like, b*&^, please. Wade Robson has known all along that this story was going to break, because he was in on the planning of it.

      Secondly, if you read the fine print in all of these articles, they are all giving away the lie-and so stupid they don’t even realize it! (Or is it, rather, that they think readers are that stupid?).

      That this is a well executed and planned out conspiracy is given away by none other than Diane Dimond, in her latest hit piece. And funny thing is, she writes as if she has NO IDEA what she is actually giving away here. In choosing to brag about her relationship to this PI, in order to “up” her credibility, she has with one felled axe just spilled the whole kit and caboodle.

      I don’t want to waste too much time on her garbage but here are two key passages:

      “The documents and cassette tapes reviewed by Sunday People were offered up by a private detective who has been knocking around Hollywood with them for a long time. He remained unnamed in the U.K. paper and will remain so here, but he’s hardly a shadowy figure. I have known him personally for many years.”. I’m gong to provide the link here just so you can all see for yourself: Yes, Ms. Dimond is really that stupid!

      http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/07/01/the-story-behind-the-latest-michael-jackson-bombshell.html

      So here she admits what a cozy ring they all are. Well, her buddy HAS been identified, and his name is Paul Baressi, who according to Roger Friedman obtained those tapes from a NATIONAL ENQUIRER reporter, Jim Mitteager.

      http://www.showbiz411.com/2013/06/30/michael-jackson-slimed-by-british -press-heres-the-real-story-from-2005

      Now to get back to what Diane Dimond has to say, this was the part that had me whooping out loud:

      “The unnamed private eye who provided the newspaper with his copies of the old files said he came forward after listening to Wade Robson…”

      My reaction to this, again: B****, please. How gullible does she think her readers are? If she really thinks we’re just going to sit back and believe all this is coincidence and all these people are being driven by such noble concerns, I have property on Neptune I could interest her in. The fact that all of these stories are even MENTIONING Wade Robson’s name says everything. They knew this was the next step way back when The Daily Mail hinted there would be two more “victims” coming forward.

      Also interesting that she never fails to bring up the role of the AEG trial in all of this, casting all of the blame on Katherine Jackson. Her motivation for this is crystal clear as well: Drop the suit, and all of this bad, old ugliness will go away.

      Why does she continue to harp that point with EVERY SINGLE article she writes now?

      Hmmm. Really makes you wonder. What does she know that the rest of us don’t?

      I know this has probably opened up the floodgates for commentary on this new story, rather than Cziesler’s testimony on Michael’s sleep deprivation. I didn’t intend to go there, but as it will be a few days before I can get another post up, I know people will want to discuss it.

      But I hope this latest won’t totally sweep aside what I have written in regards to Cziesler’s testimony because, like I said, I think this is crucial to our understanding of what really happened to Michael in his last days. And it is crucial for our ability to COUNTER people like Dimond who wish to continue to insist that Michael was fully responsible for his own demise, that this trial is a folly and to use these latest developments as a propaganda angle to turn support against the Jackson family.

      Diane Dimond keeps bringing up the AEG conspiracy theory in every story, and dances all around it, never confirming or denying it, yet leaving a trail of bread crumbs all over the place that gives it away. She knows EXACTLY what is going on-and I would not be a bit shocked if she isn’t one of the key players behind it.

      1. Raven said, “Her [Diane Dimond] motivation for this is crystal clear as well: Drop the suit, and all of this bad, old ugliness will go away.”

        What does she hope to gain with all this? Why would she even want to have the case dropped? Although I agree this is the motivation, I don’t understand why?

        1. That’s what inquiring minds want to know. Actually, I am just speculating on all of the above, obviously. But I don’t think I am wrong in guessing that she is a key player in this Wade Robson/AEG conspiracy-or whatever the conspiracy is that is leading to all of these stories and Robson’s suit against the estate. It could be possible that it’s all just a case of timing and a string of coincidences, and that one is feeding the other, but to believe that is actually a bigger stretch of plausibility than to simply admit that it is all shaping up to look like an inside job.

          And if Diane Dimond keeps running her mouth as she is now, she just may be the one to tip the boat. MJ fans have been aware for some time that she, Sneddon, Zonen, the Arvizos, Victor Guiterrez, Stacy Brown, etc, etc are all part of one big ring. Well, I think this ring has recently grown even bigger. Actually, it may not be fair to include the Arvizos since I think their interest in Michael Jackson died when the trial and their case did. But they have continued to be best buds with all of the above, so they are still members of the party, even if indirectly.

          But knowing Dimond’s real motivation would involve more detective work into her inner circle to determine exactly what she has to gain or lose. But for some reason, she seems awfully invested in reminding readers with every piece she writes that the current crop of negative publicity is all a result of the trial. She also tries to use it as a subtle guilt trip in regards to Paris’s suicide attempt, despite the fact that what happened to Paris probably stems from MANY factors, of which the trial is just one.

        2. Yes, and one way of looking at it, perhaps, is simply an ego issue on Dimond’s part. Perhaps she’s desperately trying to validate every ugly thing she has ever said about Michael over the years with these latest so called “revelations.” Especially since she has gotten a lot of abuse over the years (and rightfully so!!) and wants very much to say, “I told you so!” to the world. She’ll never get that kind of satisfaction. I think her mind is so closed that she truly can’t see past her own ego and preconceived ideas. Also, I believe this trial is past the point of no return. There’s no dropping it now. Certainly AEG has no interest in stopping it themselves. And since Prince has now testified (well done Prince!!!), I can’t see the Jackson side stopping at this point either.

      2. Although this is not related directly to the AEG trial I did want to reference these well written articles as it relates to The Mirror and Wade Robson:
        ———————————————-
        The Mirror, the People, and the settlement that never was…
        By Charles Thomson
        Sunday, 30 June 2013

        Source:
        http://charlesthomsonjournalist.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/the-mirror-people-and-settlement-that.html
        ———————————————-
        FBI Files Support Jackson’s Innocence; Media Reports Otherwise
        By Charles Thomson
        Saturday, 2 January 2010

        Source:
        http://charlesthomsonjournalist.blogspot.com/2010/01/fbi-files-support-jacksons-innocence.html
        ———————————————
        One of the Most Shameful Episodes In Journalistic History
        By Charles Thomson
        June 13, 2010

        Source:
        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/charles-thomson/one-of-the-most-shameful_b_610258.html
        ———————————————
        FBI files on Michael Jackson published online
        By Alan Duke, CNN
        December 23, 2009 3:33 a.m. EST

        Source:
        http://www.cnn.com/2009/SHOWBIZ/12/22/michael.jackson.fbi/index.html

  2. Fascinating read!! It makes so much sense how Dr. Cziesler put it all together. I think intuitively we all would agree that the symptoms that Michael was experiencing over that period of time; hot/chills, paranoia, forgetfulness, reduced agility, etc.; had to be linked to the Propofol he was getting even if we didn’t know the scientific reasoning for it. Kenny Ortega, who had worked with Michael on/off for some 20 years, had said during the Murray trial that he had never known Michael to have these kinds of issues. He was stunned by it! It makes me even more stunned at “Dr.” Murray who was seeing Michael most every night, except Sundays, for weeks. I think we can all agree that THE most important ability a doctor has in his/her “tool kit” is the ability to OBSERVE and discern from those observations the condition of his/her patient and determine the correct course of treatment. It has already been made abundantly clear that, albeit a smooth talker, Murray was a lousy doctor made worse by his extremely limited moral/ethical compass and what appears to be a severe lack of critical observation skills. As Michael continued to decline how could Murray not notice all these accumulating symptoms??? Hot/chills, mental confusion, loss of physical agility, rapid weight loss??? Good grief, everyone else was noticing!?! The only thing different in Michael’s world, other than the stress of preparing for a major concert tour, was the addition of regular Propofol infusions. Apparently, Murray had seen Michael a number of times months before any Propofol was intruduced so he had some idea of Michael’s baseline health/behaviour. Yes, Murray did say he tried to ween him off the drug but not right away, not until 6 weeks had passed!! And certainly Michael’s symptoms didn’t suddenly appear, the onset was gradual, and to the casual observer could have initially been dismissed as just an off day. Murray was not a casual observer. He must have notice long before the 6 week mark that Michael was having issues related to the use of this drug and not simply a reaction to stress. Dr. Cziesler’s testimony deepens my already rock bottom disgust and contempt for Murray and further clarifies the fact that Michael did not have to die. The red flags were flying all over the place and nothing, nothing was done.

    I’m reminded of Judge Pastor’s on point 30 minute summary at the conclusion of the Murray trial when he commented on how Murray had essentially used Michael as a guinea pig for a diabolical sleep experiment with no other medical experts to peer review his so called treatment with.

    Also, quoting from the New York Times (Nov. 29, 2011) as they reference Pastor’s comments:

    “Judge Michael E. Pastor, before announcing the sentence, castigated Dr. Murray for his lack of remorse. ‘To hear Dr. Murray say it, Dr. Murray was a bystander,’ the judge said. ‘Talk about blaming the victim. Not only is there not any remorse, there’s umbrage and outrage.'”

    I like this quote especially since it can equally be applied to Phillips, Gongaware and crew. They, like Murray, have also been busy blaming Michael in not so many words. It’s like Michael was the “hot potato” that got thrown up in the air and as gravity invariably pulled it back to Earth the players in this saga can’t run away from it fast enough with screams of “NOT ME, NOT ME!!”

    I have to admit that I’ve been all over the map as to this trial. At first I was all for it. And then with Michael’s daughter going through her own very difficult personal crisis I was all against it. And now, although my heart goes out to her and I very much want her to regain her strength and I believe she will, I’ve come to the conclusion that this trial is necessary. There has to be a point where corporate profit is NOT more important than human life. Pulling the layers back from this rotten onion may help to reduce the likely hood of this happening to someone else, perhaps. It is also crucial for peeling back the decades of lies that have been attributed to Michael as it relates to his health and normal mental/physical state. The last 2 months of his life were not normal and many people played a role intentionally and unintentionally in making it that way. The truth is vital for Michael and especially for his children. From now on they and the world will have a much better grasp of what really happened to their dad and what level of responsibility the people around him had in his death. The air has to be cleared.

    As to why this trial needs to happen, Raven, you said it best when you said:

    “Those who are sympathetic to AEG’s side like to portray a picture of a ruined superstar who created his own tragedy. However, I want to stress again-even though I detest the nasty headlines, the mud slinging, and the turmoil as much as anyone else-that this is why this trial needs to happen. Dr. Cziesler, I am convinced, has supplied a crucial missing piece to the puzzle. We knew Michael was displaying these symptoms, but until now, we had every crazy theory in the book except, perhaps, the simplest one that made the most sense.”

    “Ultimately, what this trial is all about is deciding not who was responsible, but who was most responsible in allowing this to happen. But it’s a comfort now to know that, if Michael was acting and behaving in all these manner of strange and bizarre ways in his last weeks, it wasn’t because of drug withdrawal, or drug use, or mental illness, or any other crazy theory. It was because he was being systematically poisoned by the very doctor hired to look after him.”

    “And in light of Cziesler’s testimony, I don’t know what else you would call a knowing experiment that would deprive him of two months’ worth of REM sleep-a medical necessity for maintaining physical and mental health. And, more than that, a necessity for life itself. This goes much deeper than Michael’s personal choices or demands, and even deeper than negligence on Murray’s part. This is about willful administration of a treatment regimen that would have resulted in death even had it not been for Murray’s carelessness that morning, which merely expedited the process. Are we supposed to believe that Murray, a doctor, knew nothing about this? Did he watch Michael displaying all of these symptoms, day after day, while willingly continuing this crazy experiment?

    Yes. He did.

    In a nutshell, it’s the whole reason we’re here. And why Michael is not.”

    It doesn’t get any simpler then that. You summed it up perfectly.

  3. Raven,
    in the light of the findings and according to your post which I thank you with all my heart, I would like to ask your opinion on a couple of points.
    How do you think Michael was self-conscious about the propofol (which I learned by reading he had already used during History Tour), and how much was just a matter of confidence in medicine and his doctor?

    I remember a comment of my friend Beatrice, in which she said that using propofol or anesthesia in general, is not wanting to sleep, but wanting to die for a bit ‘of time … medical studies seem to confirm this, also about the lack of sleep and REM sleep.

    And what you rightly call constant poisoning given for 60 days on Michael because of the use of Propofol by Murray, what is it? if is not neglegence what exactly? Murder aware? Organized and premeditated murder? Foolishness? My God, it is true that the puzzle is made and takes shape, but I’m still full of disturbing questions!

    1. Although I know there are many theories that Michael’s death was a premeditated murder, there simply isn’t enough evidence to draw that conclusion. But this is also why I’ve been following this trial keenly, as I believe some of those answers will start to come out, even if indirectly.

      Based on what we know right now, it seems that Michael’s life, health, and well being was held in little regard, and that he was under tremendous pressure to deliver-at all costs.

      And, frankly, Murray was under this pressure, as well.

      I simply believe Murray was so misguided and arrogant that he actually believed his experiment would work. And that AEG didn’t care either way-so long as Michael made the show and the money rolled in. This trial, after all, isn’t about whether they intentionally murdered him, but rather, that they willfully ignored blatant warning signs and put so much pressure on him that he felt obligated to submit to this nightly regimen. And, of course, the little question that still remains…who actually hired Murray, and who, ultimately, was The Big Boss that he answered to?

      As you know, there have been legitimate questions raised as to whether Michael ever even requested propofol. I, for one, believe Michael was aware of the drug’s risks, but had been led to believe that it could be used safely. And who was responsible for that? Doctors who certainly should have known better!

      I am still a long way from saying this was organized, premeditated murder. I think what we have is a case of a lot of people under a lot of pressure (this was true of ALL sides)-so much so that all ethics went out the window. The result? A lot of blind turning away; a lot of finger pointing-and now, a lot of blaming. Like SandyK said, this was the hot potato that fell, and everyone now is scrambling to say “Not me!” (That’s a great analogy, Sandy!).

      I would say of your list, based on what we know right now, this falls somewhere between foolishness and murder aware. Murray’s treatment regimen was killing Michael, but was it negligence, malpractice, or something more sinister?

      We can only speculate. I wish I had all those answers, but I don’t. However, what I meant is that this goes much deeper than simply a case of something going wrong on the morning in question, June 25th, 2009. One could say that Murray’s negligent behavior that morning was the DIRECT cause of death, and perhaps from a legal standpoint, that’s all that matters. But Michael suffered needlessly for up to TWO FULL MONTHS prior to that, and what I would like to know now, as someone who cares about him, is why this was allowed to happen?

      And if, let’s say, Michael hadn’t died that morning as a result of being unmonitored, but dropped dead two weeks later in the middle of a rehearsal (a scenario that Cziesler said would have happened with continued treatment) how would that have changed the picture? Then, for sure, it would be at the very least a case of death by malpractice (though there would have been a tremendous effort to cover it up and pass it off as just a natural death). Either way, it seems, Michael was doomed to death at this point by propofol. It was just a matter of whether it would be acute propofol intoxication-as what happened-or a much slower, and more agonzing death as his body continued to shut down. Maybe we should be thankful that the end came as mercifully as it did. I would hate to think of the agony he was in being drawn out several more weeks. The only way to prevent that would have been had the treatments stopped IMMEDIATLY. But even then, the damage was done. Murray claims he was trying, but we only have his word on that, and his word is about as worthy as a piece of toilet tissue-actually, a piece of toilet tissue actually serves some purpose, which is more than his word does.

      1. Thank you so much Raven. Your analysis is insightful and illuminates the framework in an excellent way.

        I think the truth is in your words: “AEG did not care either way-so long as Michael made ​​the show and the money rolled in. This trial, after all, Is not about Whether they intentionally murdered him, but rather, That they willfully ignored blatant warning signs and put so much pressure on him That he felt Obligated to submit to this nightly regimen. ”
        “I think what we have is a case of a lot of people under a lot of pressure (this was true of ALL sides)-so much so That All ethics went out the window.”

        I will read again and again your answer, because in it, is that everything really is going on, like a goddamn ball of wool that rolls out, showing us how a Man full of kindness and good will, died, overcome by the commandments of profit and squalid money. Grazie Raven.

      2. Hi Raven, yes there have been legitimate questions about Michael even knowing he was getting propofol, or at least if he knew he was getting it nightly for 6-8 weeks (with no monitoring or resuscitative equipment). I think Prince testified that when Nurse Lee was administering her IV vitamin cocktail it was happening in a main living area of the house, and when Murray first started his IV administrations, they were also done in a downstairs main living area, then, later, Murray transferred his “care” to the upstairs bedroom. It seems obvious Prince thought his father was receiving “healthy IV’s” from both Lee and Murray. I thought Cziezler’s testimony was very informative and your post above was so compelling in that Michael did exhibit nearly identical symptoms as Cziezler described from loss of REM sleep, yet I ask myself, who aside from Murray, has confirmed that Michael received propofol for 6-8 weeks straight? Those are Murray’s words in his statement to police which Palazuelos barred from admission in this AEG trial, although it was admitted at Murray’s trial. Jacksons’ attorney Panish must be accepting Murray’s claim at face value; otherwise why the necessity of calling an expert to address specifically the sleep deprivation effects of 60 days of propofol administration? I agree with you, Raven, it’s a stretch to call this premeditated murder, and although Cziezler’s research matches Michael’s symptoms, there are still many things that just don’t add up. I want to see Murray finally testify under oath as to what he did to Michael.

          1. @Teva, what doesn’t add up? Well, for one, who aside from Murray has confirmed that he (Murray) administered propofol to Michael for 60 days straight, which could have resulted in the symptoms he exhibited in the last several weeks of his life? However, if it IS true that Murray administered propofol for 60 days straight, was it done with Michael’s acquiescence, knowing there was no monitoring or resuscitation equipment available? If Michael was as “familiar” with propofol as some have stated, and being the intelligent individual he was, why would he have allowed this “experiment” to continue? Did Michael (in addition to Prince) believe he was, at least initially, receiving IV nutritional supplements from first Lee and then Murray, perhaps explaining why he didn’t apparently question the lack of monitoring equipment? I’m not sure what conclusion to draw from my own questions on this issue. Guess I still can’t wrap my arms around the fact that Michael left this earth under this still puzzling scenario.

          2. The only person beside Murray that could confirm the propofol administration is Michael, as the whole scenario was secretive at best. It was not illegal but it was sketchy, so they would not have told anyone.

            I think Michael’s familiarity with propofol is why he would have allowed the “experiment” b/c to him it was not an experiment. He had used propofol in the past without any issues and survived. Additionally, knowingly using the propofol as a sleep-aid does not mean he was not intelligent. The brightest ppl make bad decisions and mistakes. I am sure if he thought death was a possibility he would not have gone through with it.

        1. Obviously, the treatments moved upstairs once they became something more sinister than just vitamin cocktails.

          If Murray testifies, it may be interesting, but how reliable would it be? I would not put it above this man to lie under oath.

          However, I do believe that if/when he does testify, it will be explosively damaging to AEG’s case. This man Murray has secrets he has not yet told. I’m convinced of that.

          1. What do u mean? Are you saying AEG supplied the propofol to Murray and encourage him to use it?

  4. I wanted to share these comments made by T. Mez concerning AEG a few weeks ago on the Piers Morgan show.

    Mesereau on Michael Jacksons health

  5. I agree that there isn’t enough proof, yet, that this was premeditated murder. But if I were on that jury, one thing would nag at me – why were Randy Phillips and Tohme Tohme at MJ’s house when he wasn’t there? Were they laying in wait for him to arrive home? Prince testified they were there, but he didn’t say when they left. There is no reasonable explanation that I can think of for their presence.

    The police thriller Insomnia does an excellent job of portraying the distressing effects of lack of sleep. It’s a remake of a Swedish film, starring Al Pacino, Robin Williams, and Hilary Swank. It didn’t do much business in theaters, but it’s quite good.

  6. In answer your question, Simba, it has occurred to me that the reason Randy Phillips and Tohme Tohme were at the house and according to Prince’s testimony, aggressively berating Conrad Murray; could it have been because they were pressurising him to continue giving Michael the Propofol, (‘get on with it’), not wean him off, if that is true; their horrific motives can only be speculated about, but I think it looks very damning. You know what I am saying? I still say Murray’s actions looked decidedly deliberate and criminal to me. However, if AEG were pulling Murray’s strings, who was pulling theirs? As has already been said, a big snake pit scenario of political, legal and media intrigue, probably involved both of them. It is all very distressing, heart breaking but these emotions fire me up to question why it was not prevented, to allow the ignorant fears of the evil Powers-That-Be to win, if that was the case. If AEG are found guilty, it’s a pity no-one can go to gaol along with Conrad Murray.

    1. If Phillips was there to pressure Murray, that is strong evidence that AEG did indeed hire and supervise him, and the plaintiffs prevail. There would be no other way that Phillips would know about the propofol and any plans to wean Michael off of it. But Michael had had two days of great rehearsals. Whatever Murray was doing or not doing was working, so why would Phillips berate him? That only makes sense if they wanted an impaired Michael Jackson, and it began to worry them that he might actually pull this show off. Remember Michael’s assets were guaranteeing the show. AEG would get their hands on them if he couldn’t perform.

      But that still begs the question – why was Tohme there? Michael had fired him and they did not part amicably. Why was this thug in Michael Jackson’s house when he’s not home?

      1. What if Michael told AEG he was going to change doctors? Did AEG have the power to deny the request and would they? It was Michael who was paying for the doctor as the money was coming out of his portion of the “This Is It” tour.

    2. As much as I find Murray an arrogant and despicable arse, and as much as I hold him to be the one directly responsible for Michael’s death, I have always held to the belief that he was just a small fish in a big, dirty pond. Chernoff said it best, and I agree-not that it absolves Murray. But it does help, I think, to understand that Murray was under just as much pressure as was Michael.

  7. That’s another suspicious troubling situation. Perhaps he was part of the plan to acquire those assets in the bigger picture with Sony, Colony Capital, etc.? I hope he is asked to testify and grilled in the AEG trial. To the point that there was no evidence, I wanted to add that I would really like to know what was on those CCTV tapes wiped by the police, and whose unidentified fingerprints were on the bottle/vial? in Michael’s bedroom; perhaps they belonged to the inefficient forensic policewoman who accidentally/on purpose, didn’t wear her protective gloves; or someone else? Poor tragic Michael, he didn’t stand a chance, seemingly having no say in the matter. So unfair. I hope the public viewpoint will prevail to bring justice. Yes. I am upset, keep repeating myself, and feeling helpless. Wish there was more I/we could do.

    1. The police woman’s fingerprints were checked against unknown prints in the bedroom. It’s standard procedure. As far as is known, they weren’t checked against Tohme’s or Phillips’, which might be a good idea.

  8. Raven /Everyone.. there is so much I feel I want to say. I have always tried to take a pragmatic view about Michael , but at present I am overwhelmed with all sorts of emotions so I’ll stick to the “practical”.
    ( and of course all that follows can only be opinion)

    I have always assumed (and agree with you Raven) that Michael wore all those layers of clothing in the TII rehearsals to replicate the weight of the costumes.I have read previously that some of his very elaborate jackets could weigh as much 10 lbs., so that makes perfect sense to me.

    I also believe his use of Propofol was a practical solution for him too..(although to us it is drastic, we know that Michael genuinely believed it to be safe with a Doctor monitoring him).
    It offered the quick-fix solution to his chronic insomnia, and would enable him to get through his rehearsals and concerts. I don’t believe for one minute he would have continued to use it afterwards. We know he tried other methods (Nurse Lee) but he was up against time .
    Ordinarily he would have lived his day around his insomnia.. it didn’t really matter too much when he slept. There is a small allusion to this in Dr Barney van Valen’s book..Private Conversations in Neverland) .He was aware of Michael’s difficulty with sleeping, and occasionally Michael would fall asleep( it would seem at random) on a permanently) rolled-out couch bed during his visits. Sometimes he would ask Barney to read to him and this would also result in sleep. As soon as Michael fell asleep he would quietly leave to allow him to continue .

    I also believe that Michael had two character traits, instilled in him as child.. which he could never allow himself to default on..

    He was as we know a perfectionist and he also had an enormous sense of responsibility.As a small boy he soon became the main breadwinner for the family. He felt he had to heal the world and help everyone who needed helping. He may have sung “I can’t do it by myself”.. but I think he really felt this overwhelming sense that he had to.

    Michael wanted and needed perfection for his up-coming concerts.. in some ways I believe to him they would have been the most important of his career, and certainly would have helped the careers of those along-side him.

    He always recognised that he was part of the team and everyone needed each other. It’s interesting that Michael Bush tells that Michael only got angry with him once. Bush, with the best of intentions, had polished Michael’s very scruffy dance shoes . Michael was furious but then explained that if his shoes were polished, he could slip and injure himself.. then they would all be out of a job.

    It seems that he always felt he should put others first. I am not naïve enough to suggest that the benefits of a successful run of concerts weren’t enormous for him, but I still believe that he knew that everyone depended on him, that livelihoods and reputations were at stake ( meaning the dancers and musicians and other crew).. that he was the one who had to get it absolutely right for all of them.

    It’s ironic then, that this man who went to such great lengths to “protect others”, was so ridiculed and insulted ( and still is) by those who have no concept or understanding of his take on life.

    I don’t suppose I’m the only one who wishes Michael had received treatment from Dr Cziesler.. it would have saved his life.

    1. I am also fairly certain those were the exact outfits-or at least replicas-that he would have been wearing in the actual concerts. Again, that would explain (to me) why he was wearing those clothes in the dress rehearsal.

      “I don’t suppose I’m the only one who wishes Michael had received treatment from Dr Cziesler.. it would have saved his life.”

      Yes. The one thing I do hold Michael liable for, as far as personal choices, is that he should have taken the initiative to get the REAL help he needed for his insomnia. He was really the only one who could take the bull by the horns and make that decision. No one else could do it for him.

    1. I just want to point out that half the dancers in the TII were dressed warm, the other half were not. It wasn’t as if Michael was the only one who wore heavier clothes. I assumed it was a matter of individual preference for each dancer. Basically, they needed to keep their muscles supple to prevent injuries, especially if the place was air-conditioned. We tend to form theories and then try to stuff everything we see into one box to support those theories. There are other explanation for a lot of the stuff we saw. Also, Michael had a deep trust in doctors. If they told him the propofol infusions were safe, he would absolutely believe it. It was up to Murray to research the downsides of that substance. In fact, if he had been any kind of doctor he would have consulted with insomnia specialists and would never have agreed to that wacky home-care scheme. But then, if he had referred Michael to a specialist, Murray might have been out of a job. He wouldn’t have wanted to risk that, since he was broke and this gig was his savior. The worst thing about him was his hubris. He suffers from it, still.

  9. I sooooo agree with this comment Max, and get really upset when I read that Murray was even more negligent than came out in the trial, and for that he is only going to effectively serve 2 years in jail, and he has the temerity to complain at that!!!! How much Michael would love to be alive to complain about anything!!!

    Along the lines of Michael’s insomnia, it also occurs to me that from the age of 5 he was touted around the countryside with his brothers doing all sorts of gigs late at night, and only getting to sleep in the early hours of the morning either in the car or when they got home. They would then be woken up after very little sleep to go to school and start another long day. With that kind of disrupted sleep pattern and probably sleep depravation as well at such a young age, it is small wonder that Michael grew up to be an insomniac. Of course his subsequent lifestyle didn’t help, but the pattern began when he was only 5.

    1. That is very true, Caro. Also, according to his teachers, he went from being a very bright pupil who was eager to learn, to a student who could barely stay awake in class. His teachers, not knowing the full story, began to think of him as a slacker. So his education was also affected early on by this disruptive sleep pattern.

      I know Michael loved performing. He loved it all of his life, and certainly one might argue, with the amazing accomplishments he had and all the money he made, maybe school didn’t matter. But it still seems sad when we realize just how much of his childhood was, in fact, stolen from him by being thrust into an adult lifestyle and adult hours, way too soon.

      1. Raven , I agree that it would have been a good thing if Michael had taken the initiative to deal with his insomnia.. I’m sure there were periods of time when he could have done so without to much disruption.

        In my reference to Barney Van Valen and his visits where sometimes Michael would fall asleep, they were social visits, hanging out together and watching movies, or simply spending time together as they frequently did. He was a very good friend to Michael and I wonder if he ( or any of the other Doctors Michael consulted through the course of his life ) suggested he should see a sleep specialist.

        Barney quite rightly has refused to disclose any of his professional relationship with Michael. However I was catching up on the Amazon reviews of his book “Private Conversations” only yesterday. He replies to everyone who writes a review, and he has said in one response that he may be called as a witness in the AEG trial and has given a deposition.
        His book is such a ” must read ” during these difficult times.. you just feel you are there as a bystander watching him and Michael enjoying each other’s company.

          1. I liked that book, too. It is totally unpretentious and really portraits Michael as a sweet, normal man who was a joy to have around. I think writing it was a labor of love for the doctor.

  10. Raven, I am a doctor and maybe I should not see things like that, but your post really struck me.

    The loss of dreams … a great engine for man’s dreams are, in every sense.
    And, since I feel really romantic (because of you LOL), I would like to add one consideration about Michael in the last months of his already long “career” as a chronic insomniac.

    The lack of love … that is, very banal – because for as far as we know – he had a lack of a loved one from which to recover, to whom you can confide worries, anxieties, joys, expectations, desires, anguishes. A person with whom he could have a good night of sex, massage, caresses, furious quarrels, in short, love with L capital.
    He had his children is true.
    But from what we can know, in his private room, he was waiting for a hospital, oxygen bottles, catheters, the bottles of what you have rightly called poison, and its wasteful, unnecessary and murderer Dr. Murray.

    1. Beatrice, this is something I actually thought a lot about as I was writing the article.

      There have been a lot of stories about various, secretive affairs that Michael carried on during his last years, but there was never anyone permanent or long lasting. I, too, believe having someone to come home to other than Murray and the oxygen tanks (what a romantic picture that paints, huh!) would have made all the difference.

      There is one well-known story, of which you may be familiar, which is known generally as “the Yvette groupie story.” If you frequent Lipstick Alley, you have probably no doubt seen it at some point.

      http://www.lipstickalley.com/f249/michael-jackson-tea-yep-im-going-there-273009/index39.html

      You have to scroll down the thread a bit to find it. This was supposedly a one-night stand in 2000. I have never really known what to make of the story, as far as whether to believe it. To me, it reads like a very juicy fan fic and I wonder if a girl who slept with Michael would have given out THAT much detail, especially while he was still alive (I believe, if I understand correctly, this story was first circulated long before 2009, which would make sense as she refers to Michael in the present tense throughout). All in all, it’s one of those things where there is no way to really ever “prove” or “disprove” the story, so it makes about as much sense to assume it did happen, or could have happened, as did not. I used to have one very devoted reader here who was very much into her “tea” as they call it on LA, and would send me some of the juiciest stories about Michael and then we would sort of analyze them back and forth to weigh whether we thought they were real or made up bs. The Yvette story was one. “Yvette” claimed to be a songwriter who submitted some songs for Invincible (which, ultimately, were not used).

      I had to say, well, even if she made up every word, it was still a fun read, haha!

      Now THIS part had the ring of authenticity to me:
      michael jackson looks sexier than any of you would ever imagine, when we hung out he wasn´t wearing any makeup, he´d wear sweatpants and a baseball cap. he looked so normal and he really does have ths sexy presence around him, the little mannerisms he does — biting his lip, pressing up against you. I never thought Michael Jackson was sexy before but I sure do now

      As for the sex…well, you all have the link if you care to go further. It gets pretty explicit. But for our purposes here, we’ll just fast forward…fast forward…and then we get to the end. One short, simple sentence:

      “…he was really sweet even if he did fall asleep five minutes later.”

      She also went on to add this:

      “I´ve seen him him a few times at various events and he´s always very warm and nice but now that I think about it, he doesn´t seem like the type who wants relationship, just sex. i don´t regret having sex with him, and I´d do it again, he was easily the best I´ve ever had.”

      If there is any validity to her story, it seems funny to think that with all these problems Michael had sleeping, he manages to conk out within five minutes of simply having great sex. Kind of makes your whole theory one worth really exploring seriously. Maybe not only the lack of dreams, but the lack of love-REAL love in his life-exacerbated these issues. Even if you look at something like the Yvette story and say, well, that is total fan fic BS, I still think it is nevertheless true that having an actual flesh and blood human being to come home to at night, rather than Murray’s Frankenstein lab (lol) would have made all the difference.

      1. O God, Raven, I did not know anything either to the website or the story of Yvette! But it is a reading, to say the very least …. evasive! Thank you!

        I have a bit of shivers now! LOL Michael painted so sensual and sweet … after all that’s what we think of him, right?

        Anyway, the phenomenon of fan fic is amazing! There is so much fantasy and freedom, so much of that imagination and, at times, there are also some small piece of literature.

        That is real: ….” it having an actual flesh and blood human being to come home to at night, rather than Murray’s Frankenstein lab (lol) would have made ​​all the difference. ” How true, and together, how sad!

        1. Kinda hot story there! No way it’s real, though. I’ve thought of writing something along those lines myself…

      2. The story could be really good fan fic, but as someone pointed out – I don’t remember who – it has details about Michael that were not generally known in 2000. For example, who knew back then that he drank wine? Most people believed he didn’t drink at all. Yvette’s description of his chaotic bedroom also was proven true. She could have embellished a lot of details that seem like straightforward reporting. I think it’s the real thing.

        1. She may have embellished the sex for dramatic purposes. To me, what made it read like a fan fic was the detailed account of all the different positions, lol! That part reminded me of porno flicks and how they desperately try to make sure they get in every position, from every angle-hot, yes. Realistic? No.

          But then, LMP was reported to have said he was hot in bed, and certain other details (the size of his member, etc) also stack up with other reports. The slight kinkiness (he didn’t seem to be into major masochism, but apparently enjoyed it on some level) has also popped up in other stories.

          In 2000, the popular consensus was that Michael Jackson wasn’t sexy or sexual-of course, his fans all knew better! But for that reason, the timing of this story seems odd as well, if it’s a total fabrication. “Yvette” seems to go to great lengths to describe how surprised she was at finding herself attracted to him.

          Here is a little more background info on the story, from another LA thread:

          Originally Posted by Lil Ol Me
          Just stumbled onto this thread last night. Haven’t read all of it, but 2 quick comments: 1. In recent years, there has been a sex story circulating purporting to be from a woman who worked w/MJ in the studio in the lat 90’s/early 00’s.The basics of the story however are based on a “real” post made in 2002 by a woman in the music industry on a little know fan forum know at that time as the “KOP ghetto squad.” The woman, who claimed to be 27 at the time of the MJ hook up in ’99, was an acquaintance of one of that forum’s founders. The woman was very blunt with the details, describing the surprisingly good sex, the weirdness of looking at mickey mouse dolls in his room as they were about to get busy, and even admitting that she was surprised to find out that he wasn’t gay or asexual. The woman swore up and down that she was telling the truth, but after many fan inquiries, she stopped talking about it and never returned to the forum.

          Quote:
          Originally Posted by Lil Ol Me
          @ inamorato: Yes, that’s the story I remember. Yvette. A little background info on the “ghetto squad” board: it was created as a little offshoot of a much bigger MJ fan forum by a small group of black/urban posters who loved MJ, knew and loved his entire catalogue (not just the solo and post-Thriller stuff) knew he was misunderstood, but also knew he was not infallible. They just wanted to keep it real when discussing him, and felt that they could be more comfy in a place where their discussions would not be attacked by Michael’s wider and often irrational internet fan base(many of whom were too caught up in the angelic/peter pan image to ever consider him having sex with anybody ever). So the ghetto board was a small but tight-knit place with a lot of humor, insight from a few people familiar with the entertainment industry, andeven a few celeb guest posters (including MC Hammer, I remember). But anyway, from what I remember about this, the posters were definitely intrigued by Yvette’s story. I don’t remember if anyone doubted her story- nobody clowned her, and I know some believed it, but overall, everyone was just really entertained by it. Yvette posted in the thread a few more times, but I guess at one point, she’d had enough and quit posting (but not before trying to deny the story). The thread also disappeared, maybe at her request- I don’t know. And I do remember one of the forum founders saying that she knew and had talked to Yvette and had no reason to believe this professional would be lying about something like that.

          http://www.lipstickalley.com/f249/ladies-michaels-life-viii-348730/index2.html

          But as I was reading through the thread, I got a bit sidetracked by another very interesting story, especially in light of the recent British press “sliming”:

          Part 5. 1992 Michael Jackson Neverland Jacuzzi Photos

          News reports surfaced in May/June 1992 that photos of Michael Jackson in a jacuzzi with two unidentified women had attempted to be sold to News of The World, but that Michael Jackson had threatened to sue if they were published.
          Quote:
          ⇑ Jackson’s Sex Snaps Stolen, News Of The World, May 24th 1992
          SENSATIONAL photos of Michael Jackson romping with naked women are being offered for sale by one of his former aides.
          A former aide of Michael’s had swiped the pictures out of a security camera at Michael’s luxury ranch, which showed him fondling a topless woman in a jacuzzi.

          The former aide was selling the pictures along with a home video of Michael and Macaulay Culkin, and another set of pictures showing Michael doing a “bizarre” dance with the bones of the elephant man. The article also claimed that the former aide was once, one of Michael’s closest friends.
          Others are said to feature the star, who has never had a serious girlfriend, in a clinch with a nude woman – apparently unaware he is being filmed.
          The News of the World this week turned down an offer to buy the snaps for £60,000.
          The snaps are thought to have been copied from film swiped out security cameras at the eccentric star’s 2,700 – acre California ranch. Ironically the cameras are there to protect Jackson, who is obsessive about privacy.
          Jackson tried to buy the skeleton of hideously deformed
          John Merrick – played by John Hurt in the film the Elephant Man – for £1 million from a London hospital. But his offer was rebuffed and the star had a replica built.

          ⇑ Jackson’s secrets may be exposed, Nationwide News Pty Limited, May 25th 1992
          The Advertiser May 25, 1992 Monday
          Jackson’s secrets may be exposed
          SOURCE: aap
          LENGTH: 96 words
          MICHAEL JACKSON usually leads a reclusive life at his luxury ranch, but some of the mystery may soon be exposed. A former associate of pop’s megastar is trying to sell photos of Jackson romping with naked women. The News of the World reported that some pictures show Jackson fondling a topless girl in a jacuzzi at his ranch. The newspaper turned down an offer to buy the photos for $138,000. Also included in the package was a video of Home Alone child star Macaulay Culkin at the ranch and photos of him doing a bizarre dance with a skeleton of the Elephant Man.
          PERSON: MICHAEL JACKSON (94%); MICHAEL JACKSON (94%);
          LOAD-DATE: September 27, 2003
          LANGUAGE: ENGLISH
          GRAPHIC: photo: michael jackson
          JOURNAL-CODE: ADV
          Copyright 1992 Nationwide News Pty Limited

          ⇑ ‘Jackson Touchy-Feely In The Jacuzzi” South African paper the Rapport, June 1992
          Former employees of Michael Jackson are in possession of steamy photographs of the singer taken in the jacuzzi of his California ranch and are threatening to sell the pictures and shatter his squeaky clean image.
          The photographs were taken from CCTV footage at Michael’s Neverland ranch and show the singer in the jacuzzi with two naked women. The one photograph shows the singer touching one of the women’s breasts.
          A source said: “These cameras were installed for Michael’s protection and now look at what has happened.”
          The guards are asking for $100 000 for the pics. Michael says he will sue if they are ever published.

          Hmmm. Interesting. Although the price seemed to keep changing, the fact that News of the World turned down these photos (if indeed they exist at all) is reported in at least three separate sources quoted here. Somehow, I doubt the threat to sue was really that strong of a factor in their decision. Since when do tabloids really care about being sued? Given their bloodlust for juicy scandal and gossip, it seems incredible they would turn down a chance to have the scoop on these photos. We know it wasn’t about ethics, so what other reason could there possibly be? Price too high? I don’t think so. I think it seems MORE likely that photos of Michael romping with women in a jacuzzi didn’t suit the narrative or agenda they were trying to push. Who knows how many such stories and “proof” of Michael’s hetero adventures they have turned down, in an effort to push their gay/pedophile and/or asexual agenda? This seemed to have its beginnings around 1991 or ’92 (interestingly, right about the same time as the fake story of a settlement between Michael and Brandon Adams was circulating, and the LeMarques began trying to sell their fake story to tabloids). Perhaps to some small credit on the part of the tabloids, they refused to buy the LeMarques story at the time, also. However, again, I doubt ethics had much to do with that decision. More likely, they were just waiting for more substantial evidence than what the LeMarques could offer. (After all, if Michael had threatened to sue over some jacuzzi photos with naked women, imagine what he would have done with this one! Scandal is one thing; accusing someone of a serious criminal offense, quite another).

          But it does seem that about this time (and perhaps going back even earlier) there was a conspiracy in the press to keep Michael Jackson emasculated, at least when it came to hetero relationships.

  11. @teva, you replied in response to my prior reply to you (hope that makes sense) that you are sure if Michael thought death from propofol was a possibility he would not have gone through with it. Didn’t Lee and Metzger testify they both separately told Michael it was dangerous and he might not wake up from it? And if he was familiar with its administration then why would he permit it without monitoring equipment? Could he have been THAT trusting of Murray to believe Murray would constantly, every night, for six to eight weeks, just stand there watching him sleep? But, then, maybe Michael mistakenly believed that $150,000 a month WOULD keep Murray on the job.

  12. Once again Barney van Valen’s “Private Conversations in Neverland” which covers his friendship with Michael from 2001-2005.

    Page 37.. Barney tells us Michael generally didn’t take phone calls in his room( but then goes on to describe a mischievous Michael accepting a phone call from Liza Minnelli and David Gest).

    However.. When Michael did telephone out from his room,it was usually to someone called Evie, and he had also phoned her from Barney’s house.

    She seemed to have something to do with every aspect of Michaels life, and he spoke to her quite often, sometimes for information on something he’d asked her to research, but sometimes just to talk.

    However she remained somewhat of a mystery to Barney. All Michael ever said to him about her was that she was very important to him !!

    1. @Mag, Evy Tavasci was Michael’s personal assistant for many years, perhaps that’s the person to whom Barney referred? I believe she’s on at least one side’s witness list in the AEG trial and I’ve often questioned why we have heard almost nothing about/from her since Michael’s passing. She’s credited on TII, the film, as an “archivist”. I’ve read that in 1992-1993 there was a theft from her personal residence by someone looking for dirt on Michael. I read Barney’s book and agree that Evy remains a mystery.

      1. Thanks June.. I had actually forgotten this, and without the surname, searching didn’t produce anything useful. It also appears she was known as Evvy ( short for Evelyn) to add to my confusion!!

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