Jonestown Massacre, 34 Years Later

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About John Tinseth

John Tinseth ex-deputy sheriff, ex-paratrooper, and ex-park ranger, is the author of the men's style blog, The Trad, whose tag line, "Not as good as it was—better than it will be," sums up his view of life. You think it's bad now? Just wait. Appreciate it while you can. As an Army brat, Tinseth saw enough of the world at an early age to know “assholes are everywhere." For this reason, he doesn't like much, but what he does like is what he loves. Tinseth hangs his clothes, for now, in New York City.


  1. We also learned that DOGMA in all its forms can be and is deadly. When people believe in something without question, only bad things happen.

  2. What were your father’s reasons? The trauma of what you’d see?

  3. Richard Aubrey says:

    As to engaging the Guyanese Army: Most third-world armies are for the purpose of controlling the citizenry. Not a problem for professional soldiers. Or, for that matter, reasonably motivated insurgents.
    I don’t think hauling bodies which have spent some time in the tropical sun would be something you’d get over with a couple of beers.
    Graves Registration guys are reputed to be juice freaks. That’s second-hand, but I can see it.

  4. My parents subscribed to Time magazine and I still remember looking at the pictures of the bodies at Guyana. I was 12 and it gave me nightmares. We lived in the Bay Area, had been hearing stories on the nightly news about People’s Temple for weeks. This is one of the major events I remember from my 1970′s childhood, along with the Patty Hearst kidnapping, the Chowchilla school bus kidnapping, and the Iranian hostage crisis. In retrospect, Imhave no idea why my parents insisted on watching the news at dinner.

  5. Richard Aubrey says:

    Sarah. In those blessed days, the news was on at 6:30. And there was the Today show in the morning which had not then morphed into puff pieces on people famous for being famous.
    So, other than changing dinner time, your folks had the choice of news or not.

  6. Kay-
    Richard hits on it in his comment. My father was an A Team Cpt in Vietnam from ’66-’67 and suggested the removal of bodies in the jungle after a few days would not be something to do, at least not voluntarily. His experience of the odor and his relating it to me changed my mind. He said it was something he would always remember and didn’t want me to experience it.

    Wonderful comment. Thank you.

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