1. An Extra Initial Forward - May 15, 2007


When I wrote my first version of Truth versus Lies I had not had access to the written reports (Qb and Qc) of Scharlette Holdman and her investigators. Later, when I received copies of those reports, I had doubts as to whether Scharlette and her investigators had accurately recounted what their interviewees had said, and I also wondered whether they had manipulated the interviewees in order to elicit the kinds of statements that the investigators wanted. But I felt I needed to deal with the investigators’ reports in the book in order to make sure that no one would think I was suppressing important information. I therefore rewrote Truth versus Lies, inserting a good deal of discussion of material from the investigators’ reports.

I now wish I had left most of that material out of the book altogether, because its reliability is open to so much doubt that I consider it worthless.

In Appendix 10, written in 1998, I outlined some reasons for being skeptical about the reports of Scharlette Holdman and her investigators. A few years later, Scharlette and my friend, the late Joy Richards, were both involved in the disposition of my cabin, which had been moved from Montana to Sacramento and was then in the custody of the Federal Defenders Office. At that time Scharlette told Joy that the State of California had claimed the right to take possession of the cabin. Actually it was not the State of California but the Federal Government that had claimed the cabin, as Scharlette should have known. Scharlette never explained this error on her part; in fact, she never afterward answered any communication from Joy or from me. Needless to say, this incident intensified my doubts about Scharlette’s ability to collect and report accurate information.

But there is something else that is much more important. At several points in Truth versus Lies I cited a declaration (Da) that my father’s old friend, the late Ralph Meister, had signed at the urging of Scharlette and her collaborators. Much of the declaration was true, but some parts were false, and it was not clear how Ralph could have known even the true information contained in the declaration. So in July 2005 I sent Ralph a copy of his declaration and invited him to comment on it. In response he sent me a signed statement (reproduced below) in which he repudiated the entire declaration.

Clearly Scharlette and her collaborators manipulated Ralph Meister into signing a declaration that he would never have signed if he had been free of improper influence. It therefore seems very probable that Scharlette and her people similarly manipulated some of the other individuals whom they interviewed. Consequently, the reader should disregard all information in this book that is attributed to Investigator #2 (Scharlette Holdman), Investigator #3 (Gary Sowards), Investigator #5 (Charlie Pizarro), or Investigator #6 (Susan Garvey). The information to be disregarded includes, among other things, all information cited from Qb and Qc, since Qc consists entirely of information provided by Investigator #2, and most of the information in Qb was provided by Investigator #2, Investigator #5, Investigator #6, or other investigators working for Scharlette Holdman.

On the other hand, I have no reason to doubt the accuracy of the information provided by Investigator #1 (Betsy Anderson), Investigator #4 (Jackie Tully) or Investigator #7 (Nancy Pemberton), none of whom worked closely with Schalette.

I ought to rewrite Truth versus Lies to eliminate all dependence on information reported by Scharlette Holdman and her collaborators, but for the foreseeable future I won’t have time to do that. So, for the time being the book must remain in its present form, though with the foregoing warning to the reader.

Ted Kaczynski

May 15, 2007

Refutation of Declaration - Mar 5, 2006

[Transcription by TJK, 5/16/07]

March 5, 2006 Sunday

Refutation of Declaration

To Whom it may concern:

On July 18, 2005, Theodore John Kaczynski asked me in a personal correspondence to reconsider a declaration I made on February 2, 1997. This document is written in response to that request. The information and opinions herein represent the truth to the best of my knowledge and correct the declaration that while in fact has been signed by me, upon re-reading, I now feel strongly misrepresents my statements and the true meaning of those statements.

So much of the declaration is false statements it is difficult to separate what is true. Paragraphs 1 through 4 are true.

I strongly object to the indiscriminate and inflammatory use of the word intellectual which appears 12 times in this short statement; true intellectual, intellectual subjects, to be an intellectual, intellectual world, intellectual image, intellectual thought, intellectual giant, this “almost from the day he was born” rubbish, intellectual development, intellectual ideals, again intellectual development, successful intellectual, intellectual investment, intellectual achievement, I propose to strike every use of the word, intellectual. In the declaration, it is obviously misused and meant to mislead.

Theodore Kaczynski’s mother Wanda wanted her sons to be smart just like every mother wants their children to be smart and successful in life, to have the things she never had, just like every mother who has had an especially difficult life and wants to improve herself and provide an example for her sons and steer them in the right direction. After her sons were older, Wanda went to college and became a school teacher. Her sons both pursued a college education. Wanda followed a generally accepted method of raising intelligent children. In my experience with testing children, many many parents wanted to get their child into kindergarten or first grade early, as soon as the child passed intellect barriers. My wife, Stella, had a friendly competitiveness with Wanda since their oldest children were born months apart and they compared progress. My objection is that the declaration portrays Wanda as an extremist, a neurotic who “seemed to have only an intellectual (dirty word) investment” in her son, once again, rubbish. She was a loving and devoted mother and I never meant otherwise.

In paragraph 7, the first sentence is obviously impossible and once again, inflammatory. Also, she was not “obsessed with his intellectual development.” In the third sentence, all mothers record milestones, what is religious about baby books?

Paragraph 8 is another complete fabrication, total out of control fabrication. I repeat, the last sentence, “She seemed to have only an intellectual investment in Teddy John” is pure mean spirited nonsense.

I totally reject paragraphs 9 and 10. These are not my words, they sound like a script from a soap opera on television. In fact, considering knowledge I did have of the Kaczynski’s home life during these years, I could never have reasonably made the statements in paragraphs 9 and 10, and if I did state anything similar to what was signed, I now realize I was being completely biased and unjustly judgemental. The words “badly injured”, “feared social contact”, “social deficiencies”, “lost control and verbally abused”, “lied to protect”, “intense pressure”, are not what I remember at all. No one but Teddy John could have known exactly how he was feeling, and the last two sentences are pure conjecture, more soap opera script. Finally, and most importantly, I never once felt that the Kaczynski family needed any sort of counseling and I never recommended they seek professional help. That fact in itself says more about their homelife than all the hypothesizing and colored statements in this faulty declaration.

Paragraph 11 is close to accurate. My wife, Stella Meister greatly admired Theodore for the manner in which he lived alone in the mountains. She corresponded with him for many years and looked up to him as a true aesthete. She more than I understood what joy and solace Theodore found living in the mountains. “Protection from social deficiencies”, Stella certainly never ever would have thought that. “Autonomy in the absence of other social skills represents salvation.” What great philosopher thought of that one, it does not apply here. Unfortunately, the last sentence of the declaration is just too profound.

In short, I believe that it would be best to refute the declaration I signed in its entirety, and in the future think twice before I sign a declaration written by someone else who may have questionable motives rather than seeking the truth. I hereby do exact exactly that. I, Ralph K. Meister, refute the entire attached declaration that I signed on February 2, 1997.


Ralph K. Meister

[signature: Ralph K. Meister]

Witness: [signature: Janice Powell(?)]

Witness: [signature: Amy Incendela]

Date: 3/19/06

2. Emphasizing Some Montana Witnesses Perceived Unreliability

Before: 4. (Ha) NY Times Nat., May 26, 1996, p. 24, column 1.

After: 4. (Ha) NY Times Nat., May 26, 1996, p. 24, column 1. There was an article (Hd) Missoulian, April 3, 1997 (the Missoulian is the newspaper of Missoulia, Montana), authored by one Mick Holien, that was based on an interview with Butch Gehring and his wife Wendy. It contained the usual nonsense. It is distressing that a supposedly responsible newspaper would publish material like this solely on the word of people whom any experienced journalist should have recognized as chuckle-headed and unreliable.

3. David Kaczynskis’ Death Penalty Abolition Advocacy

Before: Third: Since agreeing to a plea bargain in January 1998, I have been out of danger of the death penalty, yet at this writing (April 21, 1998), my brother has not to my knowledge retracted publicly any of the false statements that he made about me and our family, though he well knows how important to me such a retraction would be.

After: Third: Since agreeing to a plea bargain in January 1998, I have been out of danger of the death penalty, On February 22, 1998, my brother gave an interview to the Schenectady Sunday Gazette according to which, “David Kaczynski said his convictions about his brothers mental illness have alienated him from a brother whom he still loves deeply. ‘It seems like every word I speak is a dagger to my brother’s heart,’ he said.” Yet Dave has continued to give interviews to which he lies about me and talks about my alleged mental illness (e.g. People magazine August 10, 1998), even though he no longer has the excuse that he is trying to save me from the death penalty.

4. Protecting the privacy of a family member - Feb 2, 2000

Ted asks an editor of Green Anarchist magazine that they black out sections from the 1st draft copy he has, out of privacy concerns for a family member, accepting that either a single or multiple photocopies, is or are being distributed on a small scale:


During the same two-week visit,24 my brother talked about our cousin Nora. He told me that she'd been diagnosed with schizophrenia, and that she was taking drugs for it. He said that she was "almost normal" as long as she was on the drugs, but that she "went crazy" when she tried to do without them. In reference to the fact that Nora was genetically related to us, he added, "Gee, I hope we haven't got anything like that." When discussing Nora's case, he unhesitatingly assumed that schizophrenia was undesirable and raised no questions about the utility of the drugs; he did not say anything about mental illness being caused by the "insanity of society itself," nor did he suggest that the hallucinations of schizophrenics might be real.23

What is remarkable is that my brother seemed completely unaware of the inconsistency between his attitude toward mental illness when discussing Nora's case and his attitude when discussing the case of his friend Joel. It is not uncommon for my brother to express contradictory attitudes or opinions without apparently noticing the inconsistencies involved. I attribute this to his mental laziness. He is so little in the habit of thinking, that even the most obvious contradictions often escape his observation.

Thus, it is entirely possible that until he reads this chapter, he will remain unaware of the inconsistency between his attitudes toward mental illness as expressed in his letters, and his recent attempts to portray me as mentally ill, as in his interviews with the New York Times25, the Sacramento Bee,26 and on 60 Minutes.27 He showed there not only that he was ready to conclude I was mentally ill on flimsy evidence, but that he wanted me to be subjected to presumably involuntary "treatment" under conditions of confinement:

"MIKE WALLACE: The Kaczynski family . . . want him locked away, and treated . . .”28

Compare this with Dave's response to my suggestion that Joel should be advised merely to investigate the possibility of taking treatment under voluntary conditions. Of course, my brother was lying about me to the media, and at some level he must have realized that he was lying, yet at the same time he probably at least half-believed his own lies. (My mother and brother are alike in that they have no stable set of beliefs, values, or principles. Instead, their attitudes and opinions fluctuate wildly in order to suit their emotional needs at the moment.)


23. (Ca) FL #401, letter from me to David Kaczynski, September or early October, 1989 (carbon copy kept in the cabin), p. 7:

“[W]hen you came to visit me, in reference to schizophrenic children who see the floor heaving and tossing under them, you said, 'maybe the floor really is heaving . . . .' [The three dots are in the original.] Of course you don’t really believe this — you just make that statement to confirm an ideology designed to satisfy your emotional needs. Where your ego and your ideology aren’t at stake, you take an entirely different point of view. Thus, during the same visit, you mentioned Nora’s case. There — since no friend of yours was involved and your ego and ideology weren’t at stake — you unhesitatingly accepted the existence of schizophrenia, the undesirability of it, and the fact that drugs can bring a schizophrenic back to perception of reality. You also added, 'Gee, I hope we haven’t got anything like that'. If you really believed that the hallucinations of a schizophrenic were as real as the perceptions of a sane person, why would you 'hope we haven’t got anything like that'?

"I refrained from pointing out the obvious contradictions in your expressed views because by that time I knew that it was hopeless to try to reason with you on that subject . . . ."

24. The visit occupied the first two weeks of October, 1986. See (Ba) Journals of TJK, Series VII #3, November 1, 1986, p. 14.

5. Investigator Holdman’s Perceived Unreliability

Added April 28, 1998; modified July 19, 1998:

But the question of investigator reliability has another dimension entirely different from the one we’ve been considering. At the time (April, 1998) when I had finished writing this book except for minor revisions and the present appendix, I received information that gave me a much fuller picture of Investigator #2 than I’d had previously. It appears that he/she is an anti-death penalty zealot who has no scruples about lying to clients and deceiving them in order to “save” them whether they like it or not. He/she is regarded as an expert in “managing” (i.e., manipulating) clients, and specializes in “proving” that they are mentally ill. Before receiving this information I had of course realized that Investigator #2 had been less than honest with me, but I had not fully understood the extent to which he/she had deceived me or how dishonest he/she was.

How does Investigator #2’s character affect the reliability of his/her reports? I can only guess. Since he/she has a very good reputation among lawyers (as is indicated by Quin Denvir’s statement quoted earlier), he/she probably tries to make sure that the facts he/she reports to them are accurate. But I would expect that he/she slants his/her reports: When I orally discussed Investigator #2’s reliability with Quin Denvir, he told me that he was confident that the facts that Investigator #2 reported were accurate, but he added that possibly Investigator #2 might omit facts that would hurt the case he/she was trying to build.

In any event, given Investigator #2’s agenda, it is certain that any slanting of the reports that he/she prepared for my lawyers must be in a direction that would tend to exaggerate any indications of mental illness on my part. Anything in those reports (i.e., in (Qb) Written Investigator Reports) that argues for my sanity can presumably be accepted at face value, barring inadvertent errors.

What about the accuracy of the oral and written reports that Investigator #2 prepared for me personally (i.e., (Qa) Oral Reports from Investigators, (Qc) Written Reports by Investigator #2, (Qe) Investigator Notes)? Those that deal with concrete facts are probably honest, since Investigator #2 would not endanger his/her reputation by knowingly reporting facts incorrectly. Whether he/she has omitted inconvenient facts is anyone’s guess. As for opinions and judgments expressed by Investigator #2, the reader will have to decide for himself how much weight he wants to give them. Before making this decision he should know the following facts about Investigator #2.

Investigator #2’s strong point as an investigator is his/her talent for ingratiating him/herself with people, winning their confidence, and getting them to reveal things that they would otherwise prefer to keep private. He/she played a double game with Dave and Linda right from the start by extracting from them personal information that he/she passed on to me, knowing that I intended eventually to use it to discredit my brother and his wife. On at least one occasion, while he/she was giving me such information, he/she joined me in laughing at my brother’s silliness, as is recorded in (Qe) Investigator Note #2.

Investigator #2 also played a double game with me, leading me to believe that he/she was going to help me to refute my brother’s portrait of me as a madman, when in reality he/she was working to collect the tools that would enable my lawyers to represent me as insane – the crazier the better – in order to “save” me from the death penalty.

After I pled guilty, Investigator #2 continued to misrepresent to me his/her role, downplaying the part that he/she had played in the effort to portray me as severely mentally ill, so that I never realized the extent to which he/she had helped to manipulate me until I received information from an outside source.

Shortly after interviewing Butch Gehring while I was in jail in Montana, Investigator #2 told me that he/she believed that Butch was abusing his daughter Tessa. I suggested that Investigator #2 report this to the child protection authorities. Investigator #2 answered that he/she would do so later, anonymously, in order to avoid complications that might affect my case. Several months later, I asked Investigator #2 if he/she had notified the appropriate authorities about the supposed abuse, and he/she answered that he/she had done so, anonymously. A few months later still, curious about the outcome of any investigation into possible child abuse on Gehring’s part, I said to Investigator #2, “You notified the authorities that you suspected Butch Gehring was abusing his daughter, didn’t you?” Investigator #2 answered firmly, “No.” I said, “I thought you had notified the authorities anonymously.” But Investigator #2 continued to answer me with a firm and stubborn “no,” not looking me in the eye but staring at the wall.

I hasten to add that I have no idea whether Butch Gehring actually was abusing his daughter. That was Investigator #2’s opinion, not mine.

On another occasion, Investigator #2 told me why he/she was no longer working in Florida, where he/she had plied his/her trade earlier in his/her career. On the excuse that he/she and co-workers were out of cash, he/she filled out certain false vouchers. He/she was caught, and to avoid serving a two-year prison sentence, made a bargain according to which he/she agreed to work on no more Florida death cases.


Early in February, 1998, I asked Investigator #2 whether he/she could find out if my brother had been in contact with his friends between the time of my arrest (April 3, 1996) and the time when they were interviewed by the investigators (December 7–10, 1996; May 11, June 10, and June 25, 1997; see (Qb) Written Investigator Reports #32, Dale Es., #33, K.H. and Jeanne En., #122, Joel Schwartz). In reply, Investigator #2 sent me a note that said, “Dave did not call.” That was the entire note. See (Qe) Investigator Note #5.

At the time, I had plenty of other things on my mind, so I just assumed that my brother had not been in contact with his friends before they were interviewed, and filed that information in the back of my mind. But after learning how dishonest Investigator #2 had been with me, I took the trouble to reflect on this matter, and it seemed to me implausible that eight months or more could have passed without any written communication between my brother and these people who had been his close friends for many years. I would have expected them to contact him soon after they had learned of my arrest, and then certainly they would have talked about me with him.

Subsequently I noticed solid evidence that at least one of these people did indeed talk with my brother about me after my arrest but before being interviewed by the investigators. (Qb) Written Investigator Report #122, Joel Schwartz, May 11, 1997, p.4: “Ted wrote Dave letters about Joel.… Since Ted’s arrest, Joel and Dave have talked about those letters.”

Joel Schwartz, Dale Es., and K.H. and Jeanne En. all gave the investigators wildly inaccurate reports in which they portrayed me as suffering from severe mental illness. When I wrote the introduction to this book I attributed their errors to such factors as “media planting.” But another explanation now seems possible: My brother may have been in communication not only with Joel Schwartz but with the others as well, and may have asked them to help him “save” me by portraying me as mentally ill.

It’s also possible that Investigator #2 and his/her people may have used leading questions to elicit the kinds of answers they wanted from informants. This is perhaps suggested by informants’ responses that include the phrase “may have.”

E.g., (Qb) Written Investigator Report #73, K.M., p.3: “There may have been times when Ted was unresponsive to questions.” It doesn’t seem likely that K.M. would have made this statement spontaneously. It’s more plausible to suppose that he was asked, “Were there times when Ted was unresponsive to questions” and answered, “There may have been.”

6. Minor Corrections