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Interview with Dr. Elizabeth Loftus on the False Memory Syndrome Foundation & The Memory Wars

I interviewed Dr. Elizabeth Loftus regarding the Memory Wars and the False Memory Syndrome Foundation back in December of 2020 just weeks before my spinal injury. Have been meaning to get the interview transcribed and here it is (finally).

PF: First off I want to thank you so much for being willing to talk to me. Also I just want to say if there’s anything I ask that you don’t have an answer for or you’d rather not answer that’s completely fine and please do set me straight if I at any point I’m off in any details.

L: What are you writing or what is your product going to be?

PF: I’m interested in the memory wars of the 80s and 90s and specifically the False Memory Syndrome Foundation which was a key part of what some have dubbed the memory wars.

L: OK.

PF: And first off, I wanted to ask, just a personal question you recently won the prestigious John Maddox award for science, just one of many awards and commendations you’ve received. What would you say, however, is your greatest achievement or the most proud moment in your professional career?

L: Well those are two different questions, I think the achievement I would answer by saying, I’ve spent a terrific professional life. I get to make scientific discoveries and also apply those discoveries to real world cases and to help people along the way. That’s my greatest achievement.

PF: So you were always interested in, was science always your calling and vocation? When did you realize that’s what you wanted to do?

L: No, it wasn’t I contemplated a bunch of other things, I was maybe going to be a high school math teacher

PF: Oh wow!

L: I always thought that’s what I thought I’d end up doing.

PF: I wanted to be an entomologist until i realized “Oh, wait, you have to touch the bugs?”

L: Oh yeah.

PF: You were one of the original members of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation scientific advisory board, what was that experience like?

L: First of all, I was working on these repressed memory cases when I got a call from Martin Orne who was one of the original members, I wasn’t. He asked me if I would join this board since I had been doing research on memory distortion and had already worked on a few cases of claims of repressed memory and was deeply interested in the issues it was just a natural thing for me to do to become a member of what became a very, very large, you know, fifty people or something, scientific and professional advisory board. That happened maybe in 1993ish I might have joined.

PF: Ok, I know you published an article about the False Memory Syndrome Foundation in Washington Post in ‘91…

L: That was an article, that was written about about a talk I gave, that was written about a talk I gave to the American Psychological Association about false memories and it was covered in the Washington Post. [She did not do an APA presentation in 1991 on memory before the WaPo interview.  She was “enthralled” by Ganaway’s presentation in 1991 (p. 84+).  She “flew back to Seattle with a sense of purpose and direction.” The WaPo interview was conducted in August and she would present at the APA in 1992.]

Tossed around ideas with her students.  Did the WaPo interview that generated a headline in August.  Presented on memory at the APA in 1992.

PF: Okay, once again thank you and please correct me on my details because I want to make sure this is as accurate as possible. And I think you answered another question I had, I was going to ask I was going to ask you if the Freyd’s contacted you, perhaps they saw that article but sounds like…. I knew Dr. Orne was your entry… [note: Dr. Martin Orne also worked on the CIA’s MK-Ultra mind control program, Loftus herself was a consultant to the CIA from 2005-2006 and is referenced in the Hoffman Report related to APA ethics issues related to Guantanamo Bay.]

L: I didn’t know them before I got involved in this issue, but I certainly knew who Martin Orne was, he was a very prominent psychiatrist who was very involved in the organization and he’s the one who ended up calling me and asking me if I would join.

PF: Ok here’s another question, do you believe that there are cases of… because this is another one of the controversies in the memory wars, speaking of war. Are you of the opinion that trauma-induced memory loss in Vietnam veterans is something that happens or is that another case of “psychological confusion?”

L: Well, there are lots of reasons why combat veterans have difficulty remembering things. Some of them have to do with the physiological…

PF: Traumatic brain injury for instance?

L: Yeah, injury, exhaustion, you know, starva- you know, hunger, fear, all kinds of things. Lack of sleep.

PF: So in a way, I guess you could say, there are cases of trauma induced memory loss, but its kind of an apples and oranges thing as compared to the FMSF cases with repressed memories.

L: Well, I mean, show me a case where they said ‘I really thought it was a lovely war until I went to therapy and then I learned that no, it was horrible. Those cases don’t look anything like the claims of repressed memories…

PF: Gotya, apples and oranges.

L: …family members who joined the False memory syndrome foundation effort

PF: Ok, now for your work, which of course you’re very proud of, have a right to be proud of, you’ve had a long and distinguished career. You’ve also however received a lot of hate mail, death threats, I know that occurred a lot in the 90s… another two-parter do you think this was primarily due to your work with the foundation and your position on false memory syndrome…

L: Oh no, it was definitely my position on the issues…

PF: Have the hate letters….

L: the skepticism that I was expressing in my speeches and in my writing. (nods)

PF: Because it’s a hot button issue. Have the hate letters and death threats subsided at least?

L: Well I testified earlier this year for a very unpopular person in a sex abuse, a sexual assault case and there was a lot of publicity about that so they, I ended up getting a new round of hate mail, but that was early at the beginning of this year. (interview recorded Dec 2020).

PF: I’m going to go out on a limb here, I’m assuming you’re talking about the Weinstein trial. Can you tell me what that ordeal was like and if there were any limits to the testimony you were able to give on the stand?

L: Yeah, I just gave very general memory testimony. I was not permitted to talk about any specific people just general memory testimony about memories and memory distortion and that’s, you know, at some point I could send you a transcript.

PF: Oh my gosh, I would love that!

L: So email me at <breaks up> and I’ll <breaks up>

PF: Oh sorry, you broke up there for a second, but yes I will email and please do. Another question, would you characterize yourself as an advocate of science for science’s sake

L: I’d say I’m a big advocate for science, as a way of…

PF: both pure and applied or do you not take favorites?

L: Well I happen to do scientific work that is both theoretical and has applications.

PF: Ok, here’s another question that I’m dying to know, do you believe there are any cases where people do repress memories that are related to sexual abuse or other types of child abuse that are later recovered either with or without the aid of a therapist.

L: I think that people can not think about something for a long time and be reminded of it. They can even not think about something, you know, awful and be reminded of it. Any memory scientist appreciates the value of a retrieval cue.

PF: Like smells.

L: Ordinary forgetting and remembering, I don’t think there is any credible scientific support for the idea of massive repression. I appreciate Richard McNally, who is a professor at Harvard a clinical psychologist and researcher who calls the repression idea folklore.

PF: Ok, and another important question here, and I’m sure you’ve gone over this many times, but just to get it on the record for my research. What methods are most likely to result in false memory implantation?

L: Suggesting things to people, guided imagination, taking them through imagination exercises when they can’t remember something, sexualized dream interpretation, hypnosis, giving people books to read that advance the theory of repression, putting them in group therapy when they don’t have any memories and they listen to lots of other people talk about abuse, exposing them to other forms of suggestive psychotherapy. These are some of the things I’ve seen in many cases I’ve been involved in.

PF: Now speaking of books, tell me about your thoughts on the book Courage to Heal?

L: Ah, I think Courage to Heal is a book that for people who genuinely were abused could be a comfort for those individuals to make them feel understood they’re not alone, other people have gone through the experience, that’s probably a big part of why the book is so popular. But when it comes to people who don’t have any memories and the book is telling them even if you don’t have memories but you’ve got the symptoms you’ve probably been abused and encourages them to develop memories and encourages and provides a list of lawyers to take their cases if they decide to sue then I think you’re entering into dangerous territory.

PF: So it’s a mixed bag…

L: Yes.

PF: And that’s another thing how much of the repressed memory therapy stuff especially as it relates to litigation and people suing their parents how much of that is well intentioned therapists and ministers and criminal investigators and how much of it, I’m going to use a very strong word, grifters and people who are purely in it for financial gain or is that something that we can’t really quantify.

L: Well, I have been very generous about my attribution of motivations, you know, and just assume that the promoters of these techniques and strategies think they’re helping people. They’re, you know, if you talk to Richard Ofshe he’s the one who said…

PF: Yeah, haha…

L: If you can turn a $2000 eating disorder patient into a $200,000…

PF: (laughing) I read that, I read that paper just the other day, that’s what got that idea in my head actually.

L: So that was Ofshe’s view back then, I don’t know how he’s feeling today. But I have been kind of kinder to the therapists in assuming that they just really had one and only one idea of what was wrong with their patient and they pursued that agenda.

PF: Now speaking of Professor Ofshe, off topic for just a second and I’ll get right back, but I am so thankful for his work exposing Scientology, he was one of the pioneers. It was very dangerous to go up against Scientology especially in the 80s at the height of their power…

L: Oh yeah, he was a big target of them…

PF: Oh yeah! They’re some scary folks. Can I ask you one more, this is another slightly off topic question but I’m just dying for your professional opinion. As a kid I was a huge fan of Daniel Keyes’ Flowers for Algernon, I loved it, and many years later I cracked open a copy of The Many Minds of Billy Milligan. I personally don’t deny the possibility of dissociative identity disorders but something didn’t sit right even before they bring in the psychiatrist who examined Sybil, Dr. Cornelia Wilbur who was later found to have coached her client, do you feel that it’s possible, as I do, that Daniel Keyes and Dr. Wilbur were so caught up in the excitement of examining a rare, and of course publishable, case that they just believed Billy implicitly despite the possiblity that maybe he’s just a kid from an abusive home who watched 3 Faces of Eve on tv as a kid and was like “hey, I’m gonna do that one day.”

L: Well, I love Debbie Nathan’s book Sybil Exposed and I think her analysis was just brilliant. And, you know, I don’t know the full story of the motivations and so on and I think that was an iatrogenically created case of a multiple.

PF: With Sybil or also in the case of Milligan?

L: I don’t know about Milligan.

PF: We know Sybil but… Eve…

L: What’s that about Eve? I actually met her. We were actually at a conference in London.

PF: Do you believe her case was legitimate?

L: No, not particularly. These people have the symptoms, the question is how did they get that way?

PF: Do you think most cases of DID are iatrogenic?

L: I don’t want to venture there.

PF: Now course the, another question I wanted to get on to is what is your opinion on Dr. Bessel Van Der Kolk’s research?

L: Well he’s a huge promoter of this idea of trauma therapy that there was no evidence for. He was frequently expert testimony on opposing sides of court cases.

PF: Right yeah.

L: And I don’t think there’s any good evidence that the body keeps the score. [The Body Keeps The Score is the title of a best selling book by Dr. Van Der Kolk]

PF: Ah, haha.

L: He’s gotten a lot of mileage out of that meme.

PF: Oh my gosh, wow. Umm, ok, ok, umm, now let’s see, you’ve said, I’m getting ahead of myself here, mentioning Richard McNally, in the Forbes article I was reading it was mentioning Dr. Van Der Kolk and Richard McNally vs Daniel Brown, yourself vs Crook and Dean, Pope vs Kihlstrom and a handful of major players… have the memory wars ended?

L: No.

PF: No?

L: You should look at a paper that’s linked on my UC Irvine website, which is called “Are the Memory Wars Over” published just a few years ago, an extensive survey of professionals and you’ll see there’s still massive controversy over memory scientists and clinical research academics like McNally tend not to believe in it but certain mental health groups still do and that paper lays out the gap and the controversy that still exists.

PF: Right, ok. Now, another question I have is related to, you know, I mentioned the Crook and Dean paper in Ethics and Behavior and I read your rebuttal as well. Now, in the mall study you said the subjects were asked to read what their relatives have told us about each event. Now how does this apply to what a therapist might tell a client and can we generalize from that or is this another case like Vietnam vets vs child abuse… [One of the issues brought up with the mall study in Ethics and Behavior is the fact that therapists could not claim to be present at the time of an event in the client’s past. The mall study to date is only effective in, at best, less than 1/4-1/3 of cases even with trusted family members claiming said event occurred.]

L: That was a study to show that you could plant an entire memory into the mind of an adult about a childhood event that would have been at least mildly traumatic. Since that time all many other investigators have planted all kinds of whole events in the minds of people.

PF: So that was before the formalized model of study, ok.

L: Yeah, that just happened to be the first one. And you know, of course, it used a strong form of suggestion but many other studies have shown that even milder forms of suggestion can lead people to false memories like guided imagination or dream interpretation or some of the other methods that some therapists were using.

PF: I take it you’re an anti-Jungian.

L: I don’t know much about Jung.

PF: I’m not gonna lie, I was interested in, you mentioned folklore earlier, I am a huge fan of folklore and mythology, I love Bettelheim, I really enjoyed Jung’s book on alchemy and some of that may verge on pseudoscience, but I still find it really fascinating.

L: Ok.

PF: But I’m getting off topic again here, I do apologize.

Ok, regarding the Crook and Dean case again, she lodged an ethics complaint saying you misrepresented her lawsuit to the media and then you resigned from the APA. Now was this incidental, were you pressured or was it completely unrelated? [Jennifer Hoult also filed an ethics complaint against Loftus in 1995 for misrepresenting her successful lawsuit in The Skeptical Inquirer]

L: Well first of all, what she… I made a couple of remarks to a journalist about a case that I worked on and she recognized herself in one detail in the case. She sued…

PF: Wait, is she Jane Doe? [Loftus’ Jane Doe case study with Melvin Guyer resulted in the Taus v. Loftus lawsuit which was settled in Taus’ favor]

L: No this is not Jane Doe.

PF: Ok, because I know there was a big deal about a Jane Doe and…

L: That’s different. That came later.

PF: Ok sorry for the confusion and thank you for setting me straight. Speaking of the Jane Doe case, can you tell me a little about that because initially she was working with you… I’m so sorry, please finish.

L: So anyhow. She complained about an anonymous reference I made.

PF: Ok.

L: To a journalist who was writing an article for Psychology Today magazine and she, and that started this long, obsession that she developed about me where she just, you know, uh, just emerged over and over to the point where I felt like I was being stalked. [Crook learned from Loftus’ deposition that Loftus dropped the first 6 mall study subjects which was the impetus for her academic rebuttal of the study from an ethical standpoint. Apart from a few scholarly papers that take issue with ethical and other issues with Loftus’ research there is no evidence of “stalking.”]

L: Ah, so you feel she’s held a grudge since that initial lawsuit.

PF: Oh absolutely.

L: She claims she filed an ethical complaint but APA never confirmed or denied it and I resigned from APA at about that same time but it had nothing to do with her complaint. [This claim is disputed in the Hoffman Report, claiming that Loftus was given forewarning by the APA]

PF: Wow, I did not know that about the, so there’s no corroboration to your knowledge of an actual ethics complaint being lodged.

L: Exactly.

PF: I can’t even remember where I read that, I will have to check. My notes are all out of whack right now. This is week two of research so I haven’t even begun to put things in stacks yet. Ok, now, so in an email you referred to her as “dangerous and deceptive” do you feel that there’s genuine malice in her crusade against you.

L: Oh heck yeah, I do.

PF: Yeah? So it’s personal in your opinion.

L: Yeah.

PF: Ok. Now um, are you familiar with Professor Ross Cheit at Brown University who wrote the book The Witch Hunt Narrative.

L: He pronounces it CHITE

PF: Cheit! Oh my gosh, Oh the curse of the autodidact I can never pronounce anything right. Now have you read the Witch Hunt Narrative and what do you think?

L: Uh, I just think it’s an exaggeration but its mostly about the child cases where the kids are still kids. You should talk to Steve Ceci and Maggy Bruck because they are the main target of his attack in that book.

PF: And how do you spell Ceci?

L: C E C I , he’s at Cornell.

PF: And Maggy Bruck. Thank you so much.

L: Steve Ceci.

PF: Now when I was reading that book, I will give him great credit that, to his credit he points out a lot of the issues with the interviews. A lot of those interviews they were absolutely like the children were led, but at the same time I do somewhat agree that once this idea that “oh well the children are being led” do you think it’s possible that that led to some child abuse victims who were legitimate not being believed once that idea had been popularized?

L: I don’t know, I think Debbie Nathan would be another good person for you to talk to if you can about because she covered those kinds of cases so thoroughly. She’s written extensively.

PF: Well I emailed her and she gave me full permission to quote but basically said as far as the memory wars project that wasn’t her forte.

L: She didn’t want to talk about it. She’s busy I guess.

PF: Now, let’s see, here’s a two parter and this one’s a little more hardball. Now there were some ethical issues that have been lodged against some of the scientists who were involved in the false memory syndrome foundation. I’m talking about Dr. Louis West particularly and some others who were involved in the CIA’s MK-Ultra. Now to invoke the trolley dilemma thought experiment, do the ends justify the means if the suffering of a single person or a small group of people result in the amelioration of the pain of millions. That’s more of an ethics question but…

L: Yeah, well that’s an ethical question, I’m a memory person. People are going to resolve that depending on their, you know, morality and ethical feelings but I don’t want to venture outside of my expertise.

PF: Ok that’s fine, now were you aware of MK Ultra and their research at the time you were on the board with them.

L: I, I think that… I did read this bizarre speech by Cory Hammond, but I don’t know about that. That’s not anything I ever was involved in.

PF: I stick to stuff like the Church Committee hearings, uh, (laughing) a lot more, I think Cory Hammond, that’s the guy who I’ve read some of his stuff too, something about different colors and beta kitten mind control slaves and mk monarch programming and I’ve read the FOIA documents ok, I’ve got no doubt that MK Ultra exists. You know Bill Clinton apologized for the Canadian experiments that Dr. Cameron did but a lot of what Hammond spoke about there’s zero evidence for most of his claims so yeah. Now and here’s another tough one, I’m sure you weren’t aware at the time, but what are your thoughts on the Ralph Underwager Paidika scandal where he made that regrettable quote regarding pedophilia and are…

L: I don’t… I, I, he made some regrettable quote, but I didn’t really follow it that closely.

PF: It, it was like, you talk about Hammond it was equally, equally, nuts “I believe it is God’s will that there be closeness and intimacy and unity of flesh beyond people and pedophiles can… (Loftus: over the quote: “yeah he probably regretted saying that). You know what blows my mind is that, you know, the foundation said denounce what you say, say you were wrong and he refused to he said there’s no scientific evidence to bear that child abuse is harmful and so he was asked to step down. Do you think that his involvement could have cast any kind of a pall on the organization and its work?

L: I don’t have an opinion about that, but the board or whoever decided it would be better that he not be in a prominent position for them to be able to achieve the goals and mission then that’s their decision.

PF: And yes, definitely, it would have been a PR nightmare to keep him on after that. Umm, now uh, Dr. Martin Orne, he uh, very much to be commended exposed serial killer Kenneth Bianchi, who was also malingering attempting to use DID as a defense for unspeakable crimes. Do you know anything about his, one of his mentors he cites, Dr. G.H. Estabrooks. [Estabrooks wanted to induce alter personalities via trauma in order for the purposes of espionage, his work was influential to MK-Ultra]

L: No.

PF: Yeah, ok, never mind then. I was going to see if you knew anything about that. Estabrooks actually was charged with the military to attempt to use trauma to create alternate personalities as for whether that went anywhere there’s no, uh, there’s no way of knowing. And now what would you say to people like Mike Stanton who claimed in the Columbia Journalism Review that the False Memory Syndrome Foundation was a “PR machine?” What’s your rebuttal to that?

L: (pause for a few seconds) Well, I don’t even know what that means. It was a group of people who were very concerned with a problem in society that they were seeing and they sought to try to do something about it.

PF: I think his, the gist was, the effectiveness in marshalling both the media, and the courts and in some cases didn’t some of the work that the foundation do influence not only the number of litigations against parents but once therapists started getting sued changed the way what you referred to as “recovered memory therapy” was done. I guess in a way you could definitely say that the foundation was a lobby even though it was probably more of a think tank.

L: I don’t know, you, I mean it it’s people who, uh, I mean, would you say that people who, who… are concerned um, uh about pancreatic cancer and form a foundation to try to deal with it, and support research and educate people that they’re a lobby?

PF: Uh, yeah. I personally would…

L: Well maybe you have a broad definition of lobby that has a kind of connotation about it…

PF: Ah, I understand, I understand, maybe lobby is the wrong word.

L: That’s why I, I, just would not like to use that word. A group of people, of families who were devastated and professionals who were concerned on their behalf to come together to try to work on a societal problem.

PF: Well that’s a great answer. What are your thoughts on, I call it the strange bedfellows effect. The odd alliances that sprung up. Who ever would have guessed that Gloria Steinem and Pat Robertson would be working side by side uh, during the satanic panic era to discredit FSMF

L: …to promote satanic ritual abuse and put it on the cover of Ms. Magazine but that was an unpleasant moment in this whole, you know, saga.

PF: Ok, and uh, now you have represented some incredibly controversial figures. Ted Bundy, Jerry Sandusky, Harvey Weinstein… would you say that your work on the defense was it more in the service of science rather than simply to defend these people or did you honestly believe that they might be innocent.

L: Well first of all Ted Bundy, he was accused of aggravated kidnapping in 1976 no one knew even who Ted Bundy was then. All he was was a first year law student at the university of Utah law school who was accused of trying to kidnap a woman out of a shopping mall parking lot in broad daylight.

PF: And a member of the Young Republicans of course.

L: I didn’t know he was.

PF: No he was a member of the Young Republicans specifically.

L: And there were issues about that identification, was made like 9 months later under some questionable circumstances and I talked about, you know, eyewitness identification and what we know about it.

PF: So you didn’t necessarily feel that they were innocent uhhhh…

L: Oh no, I don’t decide somebody’s is innocent or guilty.

PF: Right and in America that’s how things work everyone has a right to the best defense possible.

L: Well we are innocent until proven guilty under this wonderful system of ours and even very unpopular people have right to a defense.

PF: Yes, yes, that’s the rule of law and when we break down the rule of law because x,y,z group are unpopular then that’s a very dangerous slippery slope I would definitely personally agree.

L: Exactly.

PF: Now speaking of controversial figures, were you at all acquainted with the Eberles who also were involved in the foundation.

L: I don’t even remember them being involved in the foundation. Weren’t they… They wrote a book about…

PF: The Politics of Child Abuse yeah.

L: I don’t remember them being on the advisory board.

PF: Oh no no no, I don’t believe they were on the scientific advisory board at all and in fact may have been more like Debbie Nathan where they extensively used quotes and attended some of their meetings and, organizational meetings and things…

L: I don’t know that I ever met them.

PF: Ok, I was going to ask if you thought they were being railroaded by the LAPD who apparently…

L: Oh no, I don’t know anything about that.

PF: This is something I kind of went over already. Dr. Pamela Freyd on PBS, I think it was Frontline, said part of the reason for the foundation was because everyone has a right to defend himself or herself and have those accusations examined. And I will happily concede that there are certainly multiple cases where with the aid of hypnosis or other you’ve mentioned that memories can be implanted. Do you feel there could be a conflict of interest though, considering that some of the scientists, Dr. West was working with MK Ultra, one of their objectives was learning how to implant memories, do you think there was any possible conflict of interest.

L: I, I… (pause) I, uh, the scientific and professional advisory board, a number of people who have different, completely different expertise that they bring to (clears throat) thinking about this problem.

PF: Did you know Dr. West personally?

L: I don’t, I’m not sure if ever met him.

PF: I find him an incredibly fascinating figure. I can’t agree with all he did. I appreciate his work against Scientology, some of the things that are on the record in the Church Committee hearings are unconscionable of course, but I still uh, as far as science for science’s sake, I don’t believe he was an evil person per se, I do find him incredibly fascinating. Now in an interview a couple years ago, Dr. Pamela Freyd was asked if she thought that the foundation had achieved its goals and she said something along the lines of how the, she thought that it had basically done its work and they could quote slowly disappear. Do you agree with Dr. Freyd there? Is the work done?

L: I wish they were still around because they were a fantastic resource for these desperate, grieving family members and they helped so many people giving them advice, directing them to good therapists or directing them to good lawyers or directing them to other family members who could give them comfort and understanding. So there’s a gap because there’s still people who need those resources and the foundation isn’t there to provide it anymore. Except for the website that they maintain. Especially the archive of its newsletters which I think would be very handy for you.

PF: Oh yes, thanks so much and by the way, thanks for so many extra leads. So, it’s the fact that the Freyds are no longer available to lead the organization that you attribute its closing last December then?

L: I think they’re retired now and somebody’s got to want to put the time and ,yaknow, energy to keep it going. And this is the solution after however many decades.

PF: Ok, awesome. Now…

L: Twenty five years or whatever.

PF: 27, yeah.

L: Oh, 27.

PF: Have you seen, I’ve been reading, I’ve been interested in the memory wars situation for years and in the past few weeks I’ve been kind of intensively into research and I’ve been trying to be as objective as possible and looking into both sides and getting as much information from both camps. And I watched Mary Knight’s documentary that actually featured an interview with you. Did you see that interview?

L: That was awful.

PF: Oh no, yeah? So you were not a fan of the documentary.

L: No it was sort of ridiculous, I don’t know why she had this camera on me with this side view the whole time, and uh it was very, I felt very sort of misled. And sorry I cooperated.

PF: Do you feel you were misrepresented?

L: No, just misled. I don’t know. I thought she would be more open minded.

PF: So there wasn’t any selective editing or anything like that.

L: Well probably, it was completely edited.

PF: Well of course, but ok, what I meant was edited to cut out anything specifically to make you look good and her look bad.

L: I well, anyhow, it’s been a while since I saw it so I don’t remember it and its certainly a very long time since I talked to her so I can’t tell you what was cut out and whatever but it certainly was not the whole interview.

PF: Another person who was in the interview that, by the way, you were able to keep your cool and calm unlike Eleanor Goldstein. Oh my goodness. She seemed to blow up in the interview a bit. What are your thoughts on Goldstein and her books on false memory syndrome.

L: I understand that Goldstein was, you know, one of those devastated family members and if they have a kind of anger about what happens in their family you almost can’t blame them.

PF: I get that, I just can’t gibe with, the one quote she made, that it’s even in the trailer, it gave me goosebumps when she basically said sexual touch in regards to children is not the horror of horrors that it’s made to be and children need to be responsible at some point which smacks of victim blaming to me. I can understand being upset if she was falsely accused, I know her daughter says she was a victim of abuse, so I can understand the anger I can not however understand saying oh child abuse is not that bad, handwaving it away and saying don’t hold a grudge.

L: You’re going to have to talk to her about that whether it was a very unfortunate…

PF: That would be good to know. I tried to send her an email but couldn’t find her contact information if you have her contact info…

L: I think Pam Freyd would know how to reach her.

PF: Oh my gosh, if you could get me in touch with Dr. Freyd that would be so amazing.

L: Well when you email me, I can send you Pam Freyd’s email but we’ll have to wrap this up I have an event tonight, I budgeted an hour for this and it’s already an hour.

PF: Yes ma’am. One last question then, at this point would you consider false memory syndrome “settled science” as the popularized phrase goes.

L: Well, I don’t use the false memory syndrome, I study false memories.

PF: Aha so that’s another misrepresentation.

L: False memory syndrome is the name of an organization or its a condition that John Kihlstrom defined at some point, but I don’t think you need the expression. People can develop false memories and I know a great deal about how that happens.

PF: Well it’s been excellent speaking with you and I apologize for my nervousness and taking up so much time…

L: You know those archived newsletters will give you all kinds of ideas because as they cover people’s speeches, people’s articles and so on, for other people that you might want to interview.

PF: Thank you so much Dr. Loftus, you have an excellent rest of the day good luck in your event later and hopefully we can keep in touch.

Loftus: Ok, byebye.



Jimmy Savile: A British Horror Story – What They Left Out w/ William Ramsey

This weekend, I appeared on William Ramsey Investigates to discuss the new docuseries from Netflix, “Jimmy Savile: A British Horror Story.” The two part series is worth a watch to hear his associates hem and haw about how they had no clue as well as for giving survivors of his abuse a chance to share their stories, but not mentioning Savile’s occult interests or friendships with notorious child killers Ian Brady and the Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe were among some glaring omissions.

Had some technical issues unfortunately so I pop in a few minutes late, but apart from that, the conversation was quite enlightening . You can check out more of William Ramsey’s work from his books to his podcast at WilliamRamseyInvestigates.com and all the shows he has done that won’t get him booted from YouTube are available here.

Behind the Scenes/Writing Process: Kai the Hitchhiker Book: Part I (Patron/Reader exclusive)

Going to be releasing some exclusive patron only content here. No, don’t worry, it’s still free, I’m just adding extra here as well. The Youtube link is unlisted but feel free to share. Coming up next week a video on From the Archives series with some Dr. Louis Jolyon West files. The man who helped the False Memory Syndrome Foundation end the Satanic Panic… fueling the fires of the Satanic Panic in the 80s!



For now though here’s a peek into my notecard sheaths/stacks shared first at Patreon. I’ll be giving a peek inside the notebooks soon as well. Stay tuned, feel free to subscribe at any level $5, $1 or $0 makes no difference the extra material (some like the West files, fairly exclusive) will be at Patreon only. Some of the updates will be shared, some will not. For $1/mo. you will get email alerts and early access, otherwise, check back at

Walking the Wire Podcast Episode 1

B.Z. Douglas and I have finally released our prologue episode of Walking the Wire, our exploration of the influential series that arguably birthed “prestige tv.” This is actually part 2 of our interview. Part 1 we talked about my book Pedogate Primer: the politics of pedophilia and in part 2 we discuss how we met, bonded over shared hassles from lawyers asking us to pull stories and interest in The Wire.

The first four episodes are already recorded and we will be bringing some incredible guests on. Release schedule should be twice a month. I’ll be embedding the videos and or podcast links here as they come out, so stay tuned!


You can also listen to the episode at Anchor FM right here and make sure to follow the podcast for updates. We will be setting up a Patreon and likely a discord server and have some bonus materials for patrons if you’re interested will update when more info is available.

Also, don’t forget to join us for the live Q&A session with me that will be at the link below.

6 Degrees between Ted Kaczynski and Jeffrey Epstein: Part 1

In 2003, writer and director Lutz Dammbeck released the German documentary Das Netz (released in the US as The Net: the Unabomber, LSD and the Internet. The film goes into some of the many stunning connections between the burgeoning technology of information theory, computers, cybernetics, mind control, the counterculture… and how all of that ties into the story of Ted Kaczynski.

In this series, we will be exploring the “six degrees of Jeffrey Epstein” that connects the disgraced pedophile, trafficker and financier to Kaczynski by way of some of the primary figures in the creation of Silicon Valley as well as the creation of the counterculture in the 1960s and beyond.

Kaczynski, as the documentary points out, was convicted of mailing bombs to universities, scientists and airports over a period of decades. In fact, Unabomber, is actually a law enforcement designated shortening of “University and Airport Bomber.” One incredibly interesting thing about the documentary that was pointed out by David Livingstone, author of Transhumanism: History of a dangerous idea is the connection between the network that Kaczynski is alleged to have attacked and Jeffrey Epstein.

“Bear in mind that Epstein was funding a lot of science long before he had a (deservedly!) bad reputation to launder. It was a prior genuine interest.” Brand, (who had been seen with “Epstein’s girls” in photos multiple times) tried to claim.

Not everyone was buying Brand’s “smokescreen” story of how and why Epstein was able to go on for so long. Someone shares a photo of Brand with two young girls purported to have been flown in on Epstein’s “Lolita Airlines.” Brand is flanked by what appears to be two teenage girls. Not just Brand but other figures tied to this same current both in science and literature, such as Marshall McLuhan, cyberneticist Gregory Bateson and others.

Dammbeck also reaches out to John Brockman himself, an important figure in the intersection of the underground worlds of both the hard science of computers and the arts. Brockman would bridge many worlds, that of Brand and his Whole Earth Catalog hippies as well as that of what would become the geek masters of the universe of Silicon Valley.

Brockman was involved in “happenings” such as those put on by Andy Warhol that resulted in the Velvet Underground. He was like a connective tissue between various subcultures spending time with scientists as well as the likes of experimental music superstar John Cage.

When multimedia art became popular he found his role as the marketer of the “digerati” quite stimulating and profitable. Considering his closeness to Edge.org the Epstein funded science publication, maybe a little too stimulating… But what does all this have to do with the Kaczynski?

Dammbeck points out that it seems that the Unabomber’s stated victims are often connected to what he terms the “Brockman network.” Of course there are the likes of Kirby Sommers, who makes unsubstantiated claims about Epstein such as his supposedly being tutored by Kaczynski at one point. Despite a minefield of disinformation, there are some rather compelling links between these various circles, this network/net, Dammbeck explores in his documentary.

Brockman in his floppy hat and crumpled overcoat looks like some self styled Indiana Jones type. His “Expanded Cinema Festival” was highly important to the rise of multimedia art that would inspire some of the zine and mail art of the 70s and “video art” of the 80s and 90s. The confluence of forces that he managed to wield and market made him an indelible fixture on multiple scenes. It was John Cage who would hand Norbert Weiner’s Cybernetics book over to Brockman, in fact.

One aim of the multimedia philosophy was “rearranging the senses” which sounds similar to the aim of Rimbaud, using drugs, alcohol and decadence to “derange the senses” to create a reality that corresponds to one’s desires and will. Brockman friend and client Stewart Brand would be tied to Ken Kesey, the “acid tests.” He also coined the term “personal computer.” LSD guru and CIA asset Dr. Timothy Leary would also heavily push the computer current in the 80s and 90s around the same time that Apple’s Steve Jobs was experimenting with psychedelics.

Brand would also be responsible for the first ever alternative computer network, separate from the military network the Arpanet, centered around nodes at various universities long known to have worked with the military-industrial complex and intelligence. “The Well” it was called. This was a time of great techno-optimism that lasted on into the early 2000s carried along by the likes of Douglas Rushkoff.

Brand, like Kesey, had military ties. He had been a Lieutenant in the US army, stationed at Ft. Dix, New Jersey. On the weekends he would head to the lower east side of New York where he spent time hanging out with artists around 1959-1960. This would eventually lead to Brockman’s involvement in USCO (US Company, a group of artists and engineers, foreshadowing the role Brand would have tying these seemingly unrelated worlds together).

An apparent coincidence or seeming synchronicity led to Brand becoming involved with Kesey and the Merry Pranksters. Brand had been taking photographs at the same reservation that the chief from One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest was supposedly from. This, according to the tale told by Brand, is how he ended up with an in to meet Kesey via a mutual friend.

Next thing you know, Brand would be on the bus, Furthur, the iconic Merry Pranksters van was driven by arch-Beatnik Neal Cassady. The house band for the Pranksters’ “acid tests” were a little group called The Warlocks. They would later become famous as the Grateful Dead.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg as far as the many weird and varied connections in this web of intrigue involving the world wide web, security state authoritarian tech, the rise of Silicon Valley and the Unabomber.

Stay tuned for part II.

B.Z. Listening Podcast Part I: Pedogate Primer Interview

I talked with indie journalist B.Z. Douglas recently for a two part interview. In part one we talk about my book Pedogate Primer: the politics of pedophilia which can be purchased at major booksellers such as Amazon, Walmart, Target, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million and a handful of shops (multiple in some countries) in Australia, Norway, UK, Poland, Holland, Sweden, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Taiwan and elsewhere. I personally recommend supporting independent booksellers like Powell’s, Skylight Books or Trident’s Book Cafe. if you plan to buy it. As always if you can’t afford a copy, drop me a line at kafkaguy at gmail.com or via the contact form (if you don’t get an answer through the contact form try again with the email to be safe).

We had initially met through a mutual on Twitter who knew we were both dealing with harassment from lawyers with very vague and toothless threats trying to get us to pull factual reporting.

Right down to “false memory syndrome,” real estate fraud, corrupt officers of the court, prosecutorial misconduct, conflicts of interest and other points from each of our stories kept lining up as we became acquainted on a zoom call that morphed into the idea to collaborate on the upcoming Walking the Wire podcast. Speaking of, we have been doing aftershows via Streamyard and Twitter Spaces, our second was recently released online and can be found here.



I’ll be doing a Q/A session for B.Z.’s patreon supporters, Patreon supporters are also eligible for a free digital copy of my book as well (as always reviews always appreciated as they really help). You can also watch the above video at the B.Z. Douglas YouTube channel.

We’ll also continue doing “aftershows” at the @walkingwirepod account to discuss more about our cases as they relate to The Wire via Streamyard and Twitter spaces. Call in guests are welcome, you can see our second aftershow (first recorded) below.

Look for part 2 of this interview in a couple days. This Friday at 9pm EST B.Z. will be hosting me for a livestream Q&A.

If you’re a Patreon supporter, a PDF copy of my book is available for you at https://www.patreon.com/bzdouglas

FOOTNOTES:

Resisting the War, One 1040 at a Time (CUNY grad paper Advocate)

this article previously published in 2007 in print and on gcadvocate.org

Philip Fairbanks

Review of this article from The Picket Line: “

Philip Fairbanks, at the CUNY Graduate Center Advocate brings us an examination of war tax resistance that’s much more in-depth than what you usually see in the papers, though somewhat more sloppily-edited.

It covers the usual bases, but goes much further into the history of war tax resistance, its connection with the Nuremberg Principles, the recent convictions and imprisonments of the Restored Israel of Yahweh resisters, penalty funds, the organized and disorganized war tax resistance movement, boycotts of war profiteers, the “Peace Tax Fund” boondoggle, and my own DON Method.

If only more reporters dug this deep…”

Well researched, deep digging and awful grammar? Yup sounds about like me… Anyway, a rare one from the vaults here. Seeking scans of some of my previous print publications to add here bit by bit as well.

“Let them march all they want as long as they pay their taxes.”


Tax resisters protest outside
the IRS building in Washington, D.C.

This quote, by Alexander Haig, former U.S. Secretary of State, is found on many websites that advocate or explain the phenomenon of war protest known as tax resistance. Underscoring the truth of this is a quote by Henry David Thoreau, “If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year,that would not be as violent and bloody a measure, as it would to pay them, and enable the State to commit violence and shed innocent blood.” The war machine is hungry and depends on astronomical amounts of money to continually wage war.

Although figures from the White House Office of Management and Budget’s 2008 budget report suggest that military expenses comprise only 21% of the federal budget, the War Resister’s League, which produces it’s own annual figures, estimates that the actual figure is much closer to 51%. According to the data released by the War Resister’s League, the big difference between their budget and the federal government’s is that the White House Budget and Management Office does not discriminate between social security funds, which are collected and used separately from the rest of the budget, and federal taxes. In other words, for the federal government, the revenue generated by social security is counted as part of the over all tax, despite the fact that it is collected separately and already earmarked for social services. In addition to this, the budget office does not take into account the cost of ongoing veteran’s benefits from previous wars and the interest on the national debt from previous military spending, which, believe it or not, makes up for a full twenty percent of the annual federal budget. That means that as much as 20% of the taxes we pay each year are spent paying for the costs of previous wars alone. It is in response to figures like these, and what these figures entail — less money for education, less money for health care, etc. — that many war resisters and pacifists decide to go the extra step and become tax resisters: an illegal move that involves a huge amount of conviction and dedication, but which more and more people are choosing to do as the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq continue unabated.

As most people know, conscientious objectors can be freed from military service if they object to the taking of human life for religious or ethical reasons. Every taxpayer, however, willingly or otherwise ends up supporting the building of missiles and bombs. For this reason, there is a long history of war tax resistance. The first official case of war tax resistance in America took place before the United States even existed. In the early 1600’s, the Algonquin Indians opposed funding a Dutch fort by refusing to pay Dutch taxes. During the American Revolution, the Quaker Society of Friends refused to pay taxes and many of them were jailed and had their property seized because of their refusal to fund the war. It is the Indochina war, however, that may be seen as the real starting point of the modern movement of War Tax Resistance. Backed by such socially concerned artists as folk singer Joan Baez, linguist and nonconformist Noam Chomsky, and “beat” legend Lawrence Ferlinghetti, the Indochina war tax resistance grew from a little more than 200 in the mid-60’s to upwards of 20,000 by the early 70’s with telephone tax resisters existing in even greater numbers. The movement became so popular that in the late 60’s, The War Resisters League, founded in 1923, had to found the National WTR, War Tax Resisters as a sister resistance group.

Further support for war tax resisters came in 1982, in the form of a new coalition of groups with common goals known as the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee. The NWTRCC, pronounced “new trick” provides material and moral support for tax resisters and advice for those considering becoming tax resisters.

According to NWTRCC, there are two possible arguments you can present to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for your refusal to pay taxes on grounds of your conscience objection to war. According to Principle IV of the Nuremberg Principles: “The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his government or of a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him.” This would not only excise Mennonites and Quakers and any other genuine individuals who have a moral opposition to supporting war in any way, but would actually indemnify them for not acting in accordance to their beliefs. Another possible tax loophole is the fact that the 16th Amendment, the tax amendment, was supposedly not legally ratified and that filing the forms violates the 5th amendment right against bearing witness against yourself, not to mention the fact that the IRS is reputed to violate 4th Amendment injunctions against search and seizure as well as violating rights to due process. As sketchy as this sounds, occasionally the IRS finds it more profitable not to pursue legal recourse against such gadflies. One such objector is Bob Schulz. Mr. Schulz began a hunger strike on July 1, 2001, until the government had given him a response and redress of grievances in regards to the questionable legality of the income tax. Bob Schulz and the “We the People Project” also took out an ad in 2000 in USA Today addressing their points regarding the dubious character of the IRS. Joseph Banister, former special agent of the Criminal Investigation division of the IRS, and Mr. Schulz hand-delivered copies of the remonstrance to members of the three branches of government.

Possible penalties for this form of protest include levies, fines, audits, seizure of property, and possible prison time. During the 80’s there was a resurgence of property seizures in response to the growing numbers of war tax resisters. Since 1999, there have been no cases of property seizure, but this doesn’t mean that the IRS is just looking the other way. In December of 2004, Joe and Inge Donato and Kevin McKee were convicted of “willful evasion” of federal taxes and “conspiring to defraud the United States.” The three were business partners and members of a small Bible study community in New Jersey numbering less than 50 members known as the Restored Israel of Yaweh Bible Community. Mr. Donato and Mr. McKee were sentenced to terms of 27 and 24 months respectively and Inge was sentenced to six months in prison. The Restored Israel of Yaweh Community has a history of war tax resistance. The group was founded by Leo J. Volpe, a WWII conscientious objector and draft resister who became a pacifist religious activist. Volpe spent a four-month stint in jail for refusing to file tax returns. Since Volpe’s sentence in 1983, members of the community had not been bothered by government officials until this more recent action.

Presiding U.S. Federal District Judge, Jerome B. Simandle, recommended that the government erase the amount owed to IRS and allow them to pay an equal fine that would not go to fund any war they refused on moral grounds to materially support. The Donatos and Mr. McKee agreed to this proposition, but the IRS rejected it. “We would always have gladly paid our full share of taxes if only the government could assure us that the amount we paid would not go to fund war making,” said Joe Donato. “The lack of any provision like that forced us to either violate our religion or risk being branded as criminals. At that point, we saw no choice but to honor our beliefs.”

Founder of the National War Tax Resistance Coordination Committee, Ed Hedemann has not paid federal income taxes since 1970. He owes somewhere around $70,000 in back taxes, all of which has been relegated to causes he believes in. “I run a risk of getting in trouble for not paying my taxes, but not as big a risk as the people of Iraq will suffer if I do pay.” Hedemann receives notices often and occasionally receives personal calls from agents to his apartment. At one point he was taken by the U.S. Justice Department to Federal District Court to ask why he should not be held in contempt for not giving information to the IRS.

Hedemann refused the Vietnam draft and believed from then on that it was “inconsistent” to then pay for others to die in his place. Like most war resisters, he resists war personally and refuses either to kill or pay to have people killed in his name. “Not only do I think the military actions the U.S. is taking in Iraq and Afghanistan are criminal, but I think the U.S. has done more to increase the level of terrorism in the world than any other country, thus making the world far less safe for Americans, Afghanis, Iraqis and others.” Hedemann refuses the 3 percent federal telephone excise tax. The telephone excise tax was instated in 1898 to help fund the Spanish-American War and is a popular means of war tax protest, as the IRS usually finds it more expensive to attempt legal action so few cases are pursued. Hedemann also refuses to pay any federal income tax. According to Hedemann, it’s impossible to get a definitive count of the number of war tax resisters because many war tax resisters don’t always contact NWTRCC or other groups. But some estimate that 5,000-10,000 people are refusing to pay some or all of their federal taxes to protest the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This may be in part due to the phenomenon observed by author of “The Picket Line” blog and the DON (Don’t Owe Nothin’) method of tax resistance, David Gross. “I’ve done some work in concert with NWTRCC and with our local group (Northern California War Tax Resistance) [but overall] the tax resistance movement isn’t very tightly coordinated. It tends to attract people who have an individualistic bent (coming from antiauthoritarian dissenter churches like the Quakers, or American anarchism of the Thoreauvian mold)…and there’s a lot of ideological and tactical differences that discourage coordinated actions. Many conscientious tax resisters are content to go at it alone without ever reaching out to the community at large or organized tax resistance groups.”

In addition to groups such as The War Resisters League and NWTRCC, there are other groups, like the CMTC Escrow account, that can provide support. War tax resisters can deposit money into the escrow account where it can be later withdrawn to pay off debts. There is also the War Tax Resisters Penalty Fund, which has reimbursed over $185,000 to over 280 war tax resisters to help resisters pay for interest and fines imposed by the IRS. Presently under consideration, H.R. 2631, called the Religious Freedom Peace Tax Fund, would possibly give an alternative for conscientious objectors to have their taxes funneled into nonmilitary funds. The problems with the Peace Tax Fund, however, are brought up by David Gross, who says that “It’s no good in that it will not have any beneficial effects — I that is, if the bill were to become law, Congress would continue to spend tax money in the same terrible ways it would otherwise, and all taxpayers, including the ones who check the ‘peace tax’ box on their forms, would in reality be contributing to all of it just as before. In other words, the ethical cover the law gives ‘peace tax’ payers is completely phoney.”

There already are methods of legally showing solidarity to the war resistance movement financially. One method of showing financial solidarity in the war resistance movement is to boycott organizations that serve as Defense Contractors. According to the nonprofit group Center for Media and Democracy’s Source Watch there are a large number of groups, some of which include familiar names like Boeing, The Carlyle Group, Exxon Mobil, General Electric, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Texas Instruments, Verizon and many others, which contribute to war.

Another, perhaps more radical, and certainly more Thoreauvian, method of war tax resistance involves actually living below the taxable income level. Jessica Ramer, the author of the blog “War Tax Resistance,” chooses this method of war tax resistance. Ms. Ramer works at a non-profit group called the Kushi Institute for a modest salary plus room and board to avoid earning enough income to be taxed. Another blogger, David Gross, also came to the conclusion that it was worth quitting his job and sacrificing luxury to support his conscience.

Gross’ blog “The Picket Line” outlines the DON or “Don’t Owe Nothin'” method of war tax resistance. The method is one legal option for conscientious objectors to stop funding the military. The DON method is a non-confrontational, “by the book” method of ensuring that your money doesn’t go to fund a war you don’t believe in. The method is not for everyone and involves a lot of paperwork and complicity with the bureaucracy that some protestors may abhor more than simply handing over their dollars for guns. Information on this kind of resistance is available at a link at The Picket Line with NWTRCC’s PDF document “Low Income/Simple Living as War Tax Resistance.”

For those who feel that passive means of protest such as picket lines and letters to members of Congress is not enough, war tax resistance may be a more direct route. Whether your resistance comes in the form of refusing telephone tax, refusing a symbolic portion, or all of your federal income tax, or modifying your lifestyle to live below taxable income, it is possible to ensure congruency between your beliefs and your wallet. For those seriously considering any method of war tax resistance, a good starting point is NWTRCC’s website http://www.nwtrcc.org.

Walking the Wire Podcast Aftershow featuring Philip Fairbanks

Between next week and early April should have a 3 hour interview (possibly in two parts) coming soon from independent journalist B.Z. Douglas. First half we talk about my book. In the second we talk about how we met, our shared love of The Wire and how a Twitter mutual friend introduced us due to our both being targeted for harassment by lawyers who don’t like the factual reporting we’ve done on their clients. On our first zoom call, The Wire, the early 2000s HBO crime drama came up. We talked a lot about how the show encapsulates corruption in the system and ended up discussing the idea of doing a podcast based on The Wire from the perspective of two indie journos. Each episode we cover one of the shows with help of a special guest. Mostly people who come from one of the walks of life in the show whether that’s dock workers, union members, ex drug dealers, former prisoners, former cops or whistleblowers. We’ve already got quite a few interesting guests lined up and have recorded the first 4 episodes which we should begin releasing by April if we stay on schedule.

Meantime, we are going to be doing Twitter spaces aftershows that will be restreamed on YouTube and Facebook. Today was our second aftershow and first livestreamed video afterparty. The stream only covers the first part, a Baltimore native came on and shared some inside scoops about certain characters in the show based on real people (David Simon even used real names of Baltimore homicide detectives like Jay Lansdale and many characters are based on real people or composites of multiple people).

Once we have a schedule will be shared with the next aftershow. We welcome audience engagement and even if you haven’t seen the show or heard the podcast you’re welcome to come join us (warning, spoilers abound).

You can check out B.Z. Douglas at http://www.bzdug.com where you can also find his YouTube, Substack, Patreon and social media including his music. That’s right, both B.Z. and I are guitarists and Tom Waits fans so the first two seasons of Walking the Wire podcast just may have versions of us covering the song… To keep up to date follow @walkingwirepod on Twitter.

Don’t forget to check out the new book Pedogate Primer: the politics of pedophilia now available at Amazon in paperback and on Kindle. Also available at independent booksellers like Powell’s and Skylight Bookstore if you’d rather not support Bezos and the chain stores like Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million, Target and Wal-Mart. It is also available from some overseas sellers in Taiwan, Poland, UK, Australia, Germany and a couple other countries.

From the Archives: Dr. Louis “Jolly” West Docs On Possession, Dissociation & Alien Abduction

CIA MK-Ultra researcher Dr. Louis Jolyon West, known to some as “Dr. Jolly” was one of the foremost figures studying mind control. Today I am going through some of the most recent documents I’ve had released from the UCLA special collections. Huge thanks to William Ramsey of William Ramsey Investigates who used alumni status to help me get some of these files released sooner.

Background music “John Carpenter style synth mix” courtesy of White Bat Audio, royalty free music.

Currently working on the Kai the Hitchhiker book and after that will get back to the “6 degrees from Ted Kaczynski to Epstein” book but I will continue to collect as much of the LJW special collections and hopefully in a couple years will be ready to start working on the first definitive biography of one of the leading CIA MK-Ultra researchers.

Kai the Hitchhiker Uncovers Possible Pedophile Ring & Cover Up in New Jersey, Part 2

Last week I began a series going into the many covered up instances of prosecutors, judges, politicians and other attorneys receiving a slap on the wrist for crimes against children in New Jersey, including some specifically from the 20th Legislative District of New Jersey. That is, Union County, where the lawyer Kai alleges drugged and raped him lived. Where the prosecutor and judge and public defender who were friends of the deceased alleged rapists surrounded Kai in court.

One thing I noticed while going through this list was the name Boylan showing up multiple times. There is also a coincidence regarding a Boylan in New Jersey whose law firm is apparently connected to insurance companies, specifically the law firm Golden Rothschild Spagnola Lundell Boylan & Garubo in Bridgewater, New Jersey. I am planning to cross-reference a couple background check sites to see if it can be determined whether E. Richard Boylan of New Jersey (former Judicial Clerk in the New Jersey Superior Court before joining GRSLBG&B in 1986) who represents “insurance companies and self-insured companies in the defense of these claims.” I have also emailed E. Richard Boylan via his listed email at GRSLB&G.

Fittingly, the first case we will look at today is related to Prudential Property & Cas. Ins. Co. v Boylan 307 NJ Super 162 (App Div 1997).

https://casetext.com/case/prudential-property-ins-v-boylan

Kai writes: “NJ Judge James F. Boylan helped his son Ryan avoid jail time for molesting a 5 year old. No record remains o it except for this lawsuit by the child’s parents.”

Sure enough, I found no news coverage related to the molestation of a child of a judge, the same judge who was involved in defrauding the state and having sex with women in exchange for diminished sentences. We’ll cover that in just a minute. The only mention of Ryan Boylan’s rape of their five year old daughter as he was babysitting her is in the case text for this lawsuit, as Kai mentioned.

In this case: “The motion judge ruled that Prudential’s homeowners policy provided coverage to James and Linda Boylan and that the policy’s business pursuits exception did not apply because this was a ‘one time only casual accomodation to babysit in an emergency.’ The judge also ruled that the insurance policy covered fifteen year old Ryan Boylan as a matter of law because he was deemed to lack the requisite intent or mental capacity to understand the nature of his acts.”

That’s right, this 15-year-old rapist of a 5-year-old deemed too young to understand that molesting a small child is wrong. Prudential Insurance applied for but was denied access to Ryan Boylan’s juvenile court records. Whether there are other exampoles of this type of behavior we will never know. I did search for Ryan Boylan in New Jersey state and federal sex offender registries. No record of Boylan being on the RSO list exists.

The case ended with a judgement in favor of the plaintiffs for nearly $400,000 plus prejudgement interest. Ryan Boylan “babysat” the 5-year-old girl and her little brother, taking them upstairs where they “played some games” then went to bed. The daughter was taken to a bedroom where Ryan Boylan forced the little girl to perform oral sex on him. Boylan admitted to this act.

The defendants in the case argued “that we should declare the law of New Jerseyu to be that in cases where a minor sexually abuses a much younger child it is the minor’s subjective intent that should apply, rather than the objective intent standard that would apply to adults.” Now yes, the judge’s son was a minor, but there is a major difference between a 5 and 15-year-old.

In the suit it’s argued that “N.J.S.A. 2C:4-11a(1) creates a presumption of maturity for an individual over the age of fourteen, it is manifest that this fifteen year old boy knew what he was doing to this five year old girl.”

Once again, it is noteworthy to mention that Ryan Boylan is the son of James F. Boylan who a few years later would face charges of coaching female defendants to lie in court to reduce their fines and penalties in exchange for sexual favors. Former Municipal judge Boylan admitted these actions to the court. In addition to coercing women into having sex in exchange for reduced sentences, Boylan defrauded the City of Jersey City to the tune of somewhere between $10,0000 and $20,0000. This was also admitted openly to the court.

For some strange reason the court ruled that “the offense level is not determined under [section] 2C1.7(c) (1), (2), or (3).” U.S.S.G. § 2C1.7, comment. (n.4). Since the offense level is not determined under any of these subsections, the abuse of position of trust or use of special skill adjustment is not applicable.” As for how a judge coercing sex from women using his position is not an abuse of power and trust, I have no clue. It’s also interesting that Boylan was ruled financially unable to pay a fine and “not likely to become able to pay any fine in the future.”

https://law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/FSupp2/5/274/2341583/

https://caselaw.findlaw.com/nj-supreme-court/1417417.html

Boylan at the very least was disbarred and a very short article at New York Times was written up on the case. This is one of only two of the nearly couple dozen (so far) names on this list to have had any media coverage of the major crimes by these various judges, politicians, prosecutors, public defenders and Union County jail staff to have committed awful crimes without so much as a drop of newspaper ink coverage.

https://caselaw.findlaw.com/nj-supreme-court/1417417.html

Another name I’ll have to cross-reference in background searches is Matthew P. Boylan of New Jersey, director of the State Division of Criminal Justice in New Jersey. Matthew Boylan is mentioned in the New York Times article from 1974, “8 Are Accused of Fraud in Insurance Take-Over.”

In the case of Harry Parkin, similar to Boylan, we have an indictment regards to “a scheme to defraud the public of his honest services in his role as Chief of Staff to the Mercer County Executive.” In the case of Parkin, he was indicted on twelve counts of mail fraud as well. Parkin was also accused of extortion.

https://casetext.com/case/parkin-v-united-states-1
https://digitalcommons.law.villanova.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=&httpsredir=1&article=2608&context=thirdcircuit_2009

Parkin tried to argue his sentence received was “unreasonable” by nature of his standing in the community and prior military service record:

“This is a sad situation. Everything that I see indicates that before this
period of time the defendant was [a] well respected, highly successful attorney, he served honorably in the nation’s military and was respected by a number of people and indeed served as the person responsible for the ethics in the county.”

Similar to friend of Joseph Galfy and former prosecutor in the Caleb McGillivary (Kai the Hitchhiker) trial even the District Court itself noted that Parkin was “very highly respected” and that “[p]eople say a lot of good things about him . . . .” (Id. at 240.) The District Court read from a letter Parkin wrote to the Court in which Parkin cited his long years in public service as well as his military service. (Id. at 243.) The District Court considered this letter as well as “the letters of all the people that knew Parkin and spoke well of him.”

Parkin appealed the sentence of 90 months followed by 3 years of supervised release and $26,000 fine. $26,000 isn’t that much when you consider the amount Parkin defrauded the taxpayers ran well into six figures.

Next up is another case similar to that of Boylan and Parkin. The matter of In Re Quatrella 237 NJ 402 (2019) is also cited in the Matter of Angelo M. Perrucciby the Disciplinary Review Board of New Jersey, decided as recently as late August of 2021.

https://images.law.com/contrib/content/uploads/documents/399/73735/DECISION-1.pdf

Yet another case of a New Jersey judge caught up in wire fraud.

https://images.law.com/contrib/content/uploads/documents/399/73735/DECISION-1.pdf

David L. Quatrella was temporarily suspended after one count of wire fraud. Quatrella failed to appear on the Order directing him to show cause why he not be disbarred. It appears that it was Quatrella’s failure to attempt to defend himself and not the fraud and corruption that led to him being disbarred.

The Quatrella Matter is cited in a New Jersey DRB decided February of last year. Once again, coincidentally, insurance policies and fraud are involved.

https://drblookupportal.judiciary.state.nj.us/DocumentHandler.ashx?document_id=1138879

Meanwhile, the 2020 New Jersey Courts Disciplinary Summaries shows that the situation has far from abated. Eval Katzman “solicited high school-aged girls for sex in exchange for money. He showed no remorse for his conduct and attempted to shift blame to his victims.” Brian P. Meehan entered a no contest plea regarding “statutory sexual assault, victim 11 years or older.” Jeffrey Toman “engaged in sexually explicit txt messages with a fourteen-year-old girl whose mother he was representing in a child custody proceeding.” Guess what, no news coverage of the Katzman case.

Yes, you heard that right. The middle-school aged girl was his client’s daughter and the case was a custody hearing. This sort of disgusting conflict of interest should never be allowed to exist, as we see over and over again though things operate just a little differently in Galfy country, it seems. We also have the crooked public defender Andrew Michael Carroll “engaging in a sexual relationship with a client while appointed her public defender.”

In the case of Tobin G. Nilsen, this New Jersey lawyer was finally disbarred after federal court conviction of enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity and state court conviction of second-degree child luring. Nilsen had bought a ticket to fly from New Jersey to Atlanta to meet up with what he believed to be a 32-year-old mother of a nine-year-old daughter who he expected to have sex with. He had been arrested previously by New Jersey law enforcement for soliciting yet another “mother-daughter pair for sexual activity.” Why was he not disbarred immediately then? Once again, it appears this is just the way business is taken care of in New Jersey. As per the usual, neither of the Nilsen cases were deemed “newsworthy” apparently, no results in Google News for Tobin Nilsen New Jersey returned.

Despite a “2010 conviction of lewdness and years-long pattern of inappropriate sexual conduct” Todd C. Sicklinger only received a three month suspension. John Rex Powell was disbarred in 2016 after “one count of engaging in child pornography enterprise and two counts of sexual exploitation of a minor.” David J. Witherspoon in 2010 received a one year suspension “for offering discounted legal services or fee reductions to three female clients and the daughter of another client in exchange for sexual favors, practicing law while ineligible to do so for failure to pay the annual assessment to the New Jersey Lawyers’ Fund for Client Protection, and failing to maintain the books and records required of attorneys.”

In 2009, Stephen W. Thompson was disbarred due to conviction for sexual exploitation of a minor. He had been temporarily suspended already in 2005. The case of Steven C. Cunningham, related to sexually explicit chats with what he believed to be a 12-year-old boy resulted in disbarment in 2007. Andre McGuire was finally disbarred in 2007 after a guilty plea to four counts of sexual assault in the third degree. This after previous disciplinary meeasures: a six months suspension in 1994 and temporary suspension in 2006.

Kenneth Fink just got a three year suspension in 2003. He had previously been disbarred in the State of Delaware based on his conviction of 15 counts of felony possession of child pornography. He had been previously disciplined with a temporary suspension. Then there’s Stephen A. Gallo. Gallo was disbarred following his being charged with “four separate acts of the fourth degree crime of criminal sexual contact.”

William S. Wolfson got a paltry six months suspension after pleading guilty to an accusation of fourth degree criminal sexual contact. What’s more this assault wqwas of a “female employee at his doctor’s office.” He admitted that he had a habit of this having “touched six female employees at his doctor’s office between 10 and 15 times.” Once again though, as we’ve learned here New Jersey doesn’t seem to be too concerned with judges, prosecutors, public defenders and state legislators being accused of sex crimes, even against children, even multiple instances of such. Wolfson lucked out with a “Pre-Trial Intervention Program.”

James W. Kennedy is another case of the six-month suspension slap on the wrist despite fourth-degree endangering the welfare of a child involved in his admission of downloading between 20,000-30,000 images of children under 16 engaged in sexual acts. Salvatore J. Maiorino was “reprimanded” before the review board for fourth degree sexual assault of a minor. The Supreme Court of New Jersey “held that a reprimand was the appropriate discipline for an attorney who pleaded no contest to an information filed in the state of Connecticut” related to the sex crime against a minor.

Terry G. Tucker also received no more than a “reprimand” from the N.J.S.C. related to “unwanted, sexual advances to a bankruptcy client.” If behavior like that or these numerous crimes against children isn’t behavior unbefitting a member of the bar, I honestly don’t know what would be considered such.

James I. Peck, IV received a whopping 21 month “time-served suspension” as discipline for his charge of child pornography possession. Like several other cases noted here and in part I, this wasn’t Peck’s first rodeo. He had been temporarily suspended 2 years earlier in October of 2001 (In re Peck, 170 N.J. 4). Donald S. Rosanelli, another six month suspension over child pornography and child endangerment was mentioned in the previous article in this series.

A one year suspension from law practice was deemed sufficient and appropriate discipline for Donald M. Ferraiolo for “attempted endagnering [of] the welfare of a child” and sexually explicit chats with “Jay” who he believed to be a 14-year-old boy. Ferraiolo repeatedly asked Jay to come to his home “to engage in numerous sexual acts, some of which were explicitly stated.”

At least in the case of Gerard Gilligan the New Jersey Supreme Court finally found a a second degree aggravated sexual assault charge enough (after a temporary previous suspension the year prior).

In the case of Ty Hyderally a “reprimand was the appropriate discipline for an attorney whose certification to practice of law before Navy courts or boards was suspended by the Judge Advocate General of the United States Navy for two years as a result of sexual advances that the respondent made to two women who were his legal aid clients
while he was in the Navy.” Kind of ruins the end of A Few Good Men thinking of the JAG lawyers being predators, huh?

Once again, this is just getting us over the halfway point (as far as I can tell currently). Stay tuned…

https://www.change.org/p/state-house-of-representatives-petition-that-state-government-officials-be-screened-for-sexual-predators

https://www.facebook.com/kai.hitchhiker.blog