Like, they were talking about it, but didn't realize what they were talking about? They just realize about it later?
Look, I agree that we all do shitty things in life. And, most of the times, we know that we are doing shitty things when we are doing them. No excuse, just bad human behavior. Everybody does it. And it is despicable.
I actually agree that it's not a nice thing to discuss/think, the difference is I’m not pontificating about it as if I’m morally superior. In my view, that’s just as bad.
And what does "Demonizing != distaste for cheating a friend." even mean? You are attempting to defame Gates and Ballmer because of an uncomfortable conversation that they had 30+ years ago that they ultimately didn't act on! So no, they weren't evil. Cold, perhaps for having the conversation. I'd actually argue that they are merely human, just like the rest of us; wonderfully imperfect.