After a person of prominence dies, the FBI will usually make available whatever info/dirt it has in it’s archives on the person. Today the agency posted the file it kept on Steve Jobs online, and SURPRISE, the reports contained within reveals Jobs to be deceptive, manipulative, morally challenged, and ambitious. In other words, the file revealed the Steve Jobs we all have come to know him to have been.
Still, the blog world has been kind of going nuts over this today, but the most juicy thing dug up from the file so far, in my opinion, may have come from the Smoking Gun: Apple Computer co-founder Steve Wozniak might have trashed Jobs a bit in an interview the agency conducted with him back when he was being considered for an appointment by the first President Bush.
During the course of the FBI’s background check of Jobs, agents interviewed his friends, neighbors, and business associates. While most praised Jobs, a couple of acquaintances delivered critical appraisals.
In a March 1991 interview with an agent, one man (whose name has been redacted from the FBI documents) described Jobs as “an individual who was not totally forthright and honest and has a tendency to distort reality in order to achieve his goals.”
By comparison, the interview subject spoke of his own “high ethical standards,” while noting that Jobs “will twist the truth in order to achieve whatever goal he has set for himself.” The agent wrote that the man considered Jobs “to be a deceptive person.”
The man also told the FBI that he had heard reports from mutual friends–as well as Jobs himself–that he “freely used illicit drugs” like LSD and marijuana while in college. The source also provided the agent with details about how Jobs had fathered a daughter out of wedlock with his high school girlfriend, and how he had “mistreated” them by not providing support.
The interview subject, who said he did not consider Jobs a personal friend, did not request confidentiality from the bureau, according to an FBI 302 report included in the Jobs file. The March 11, 1991 interview was conducted at the man’s office in Los Gatos, California.
The 61-year-old Wozniak, a longtime Los Gatos resident, worked at Apple until early-1987, nearly a dozen years after he and Jobs founded Apple.
Could the chubby, bearded, ex-husband of Kathy Griffin nerd hero we’ve come to know and love as “The Woz” been a sort of Shakespearean villain to Jobs behind the scenes? A Macduff to Jobs’ Macbeth, perhaps?
If Woz does turn out to be a betrayer, it will only prove once again something a wise man told me years ago: never trust a man in a pink, feathered boa…