Friday, October 23, 2009

Producer Of CBS Reports On The Case “Crazy, Desperate, Stupid, And/Or Unscrupulous” ?

Posted by The Machine

[click for larger image] 

Meet Joe Halderman. A CBS producer in New York. He now stands accused of blackmail.

None of the four US networks that have attempted coverage of Meredith’s case has a good record for impartial reporting, or anything remotely like a firm grasp of the prosecution evidence as actually presented.

Not one of them seems to be aware of the very careful pre-trial process or the very damning Micheli report. 

Nevertheless, the overall records of NBC, ABC and CNN seem to show some slight attempt at balance.

NBC produced two extremely good Dateline documentaries, which still represent the standard to beat. ABC has a reporter in the court in Perugia, Ann Wise, who we often quote on TJMK because her reporting is generally impartial and good.

And although CNN aired the one-sided Larry King Show last week, and the wild-eyed Jane Velez Mitchel panel discussion (now disappeared from YouTube) in which the lunatics appeared to be running the asylum, CNN did have some good reporting in the early days of the case, and we hear they will attempt to report better.

CBS undeniably is the worst of the worst.

CBS has repeatedly spread bias and misinformation and slimed Italian professionals and witnesses, and for that matter Italy itself, throughout the past two years.

Here is our post on one disaster of a CBS report. And here,  here,  here,  and here are our posts on another.

Joe Halderman of CBS (above) co-produced both of them.

Several weeks ago, Joe Halderman was arrested and charged with blackmail for apparently attempting to stiff CBS comedy host David Letterman for two million dollars.

Mr Halderman, a producer for the real-life crime show 48 Hours, entered his plea as he appeared in court in Manhattan on a charge of attempted grand larceny.

Speaking earlier, Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau said that the offence, if proven, was punishable by a prison term of five to 15 years. “Our concern here is extortion and that’s what we’re focusing on,” he said.

Mr Halderman was arrested following an undercover police “sting” operation at a New York hotel, during which he was allegedly recorded setting out his blackmail demands to Letterman’s lawyer.

Now it is being reported in New York that Joe Halderman’s story is taking a really bizarre turn.

One of the last 48 Hours stories that CBS Newsman and accused David Letterman blackmailer Joe Halderman worked on - airing just one month before he allegedly launched his plot to extort the late-night host - involved a ransom scheme…

It’s a run-of-the-mill true-crime tale of murder and deception, but it features one detail that seems strange in retrospect: The sister of one of the victims, who never got her brother’s remains from the Philippines after his murder, at one point received creepy anonymous e-mails from someone claiming to have her brother’s ashes, and offering to sell them to her….

The strange thing is, in the story Halderman reported, the ransom scheme goes haywire: The man behind the e-mail ends up attracting attention to himself and gets arrested for Rios’ murder….

We came across the weird synchronicity between Halderman’s day job and his after-hours scheming while going through his old 48 Hours segments and looking for signs that they may have been produced by someone crazy, desperate, stupid, and/or unscrupulous enough to engage in blackmail.

Hmmm. Apparently Joe Halderman is crazy, desperate, stupid, and/or unscrupulous enough to mislead a large segment of the American population about the real facts of Meredith’s murder.

Real crime seems a small step from there. 

Three others who Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau might also want to keep a close eye on are CBS junior producer Sara Ely Hulse, CBS reporter Peter Van Sant, and CBS consultant detective Paul Ciolino!

All have shown themselves extremely ignorant of the basic facts of the case.

Email exchanges with the obviously obsessively pro-Knox producer Sara Ely Hulse have suggested to us that, among many other key facts of the case, she was not aware of the following:

  • Amanda Knox had a criminal record in Seattle.
  • Amanda Knox had met Rudy Guede on a number of occasions.
  • Amanda Knox was not questioned for 14 hours without an interpreter.
  • A woman’s bloody shoeprint in Knox’s size was found on a pillow in Meredith’s room.

The seemingly extremely amateurish detective Paul Ciolino was responsible for conducting the farcical experiment in Perugia in the first CBS documentary linked-to above where he could not even get the STREET right before claiming this was a railroad job from hell.

And reporter Peter Van Sant channeled some of the worst libels about Prosecutor Mignini - baseless claims about satanic sects and so on - without even being able to spell Prosecutor Mignini’s name properly!

It seems to us very odd that both Sara Ely Hulse and Paul Ciolino appear to be members of the Free Amanda Knox Facebook group. Does CBS have any guidelines at all on ethical matters or standards of reporting?

On second thoughts…. Do we REALLY have to ask?

Above: CBS reporter Peter Van Sant who repeated online unfounded libelous smears about Prosecutor Mignini

Above: Junior CBS producer Sara Ely Hulse, an obsessed Knox fan who participated in CBS’s two fiascos.

Above: CBS consultant Paul Ciolino who ran a farcical test in Perugia and also slimed prosecutor and police

Above: Indecisive CBS producer Doug Longhini who with Joe Halderman produced CBS’s two fiascos


I am genuinely shocked by this information. Coming from the UK I don’t really know the character of the different news outlets. But over recent weeks I have been disillusioned about the American new media. They just don’t seem to care about facts, not even when a young girl’s life has been lost.

It is callous, and deeply unprofessional to my mind. I am used to at least the semblance of unbiased reporting from the BBC here. To think that journalists there are free to be members of FOA’s facebook group and yet be allowed to broadcast news reports I find totally staggering. And now we hear that one of them is a shabby blackmailer? What sort of people are CBS employing?

I think the American people deserve a whole lot better than they are getting. I have watched Nancy Whatsername and Larry King in the last couple of weeks. It seems they treat the American people with contempt, and think they are stupid.

Wake up America. Demand more of your media. Much more.

This has been a shocking revelation to me (call me naive - I freely admit it) to see the US media in action. I feel angry on behalf of the viewing public, and I’m English!

Thanks for this disturbing post Machine


Posted by TT on 10/24/09 at 12:01 AM | #

CBS’s so-called “in-depth” coverage of the Kercher murder case is absolutely abhorrent.  With Paul Ciolino in the lead CBS makes a concerted effort to avoid talking about any of the solid case details by indulging itself in completely inane and ongoing Italian bashing.

There’s a time and place for political and legal systems debate, but for Meredith Kercher’s sake we should be focused on the facts as they are being presented and debated over in court.  In high contrast to the CBS effort, I have seen some very objective reporting and analysis by Dennis Murphy and Clint Van Zant over on NBC’s Dateline; all while CBS continues to insist on turning this murder into a fictional B-movie Hollywood script, all at the expense of the Kercher family.

Apparently, roughing-the-passer is the only way Ciolino knows how to play the game.  I’m reminded of the infamous Knox family legal-fundraiser at Salty’s restaurant in Seattle on January 24th, 2009.  The Knox’s brought in Ciolino as their keynote speaker for the widely-advertised open-to-the-public event and he lived up to his reputation by delivering a rousing Italian bashing speech.

So rousing that the West Seattle Herald was sued for libel by none other than Prosecutor Giuliano Mignini himself for repeating Ciolino’s defamatory keynote speech topics in print.  So rousing that a live interview with Ciolino at the fundraiser by Geraldo Rivera on Fox’s At Large from the deck of Salty’s was suddenly scrubbed due to “technical difficulties” and never made it on air.

Exactly how outrageous do you have to be to force controversy-loving Rivera to push the on-air “freeze” button at the last second leaving a live audience hanging - and never coming back for a do-over?

Posted by Fly By Night on 10/24/09 at 07:39 AM | #

A subject of conjecture around Manhattan is exactly how many hundreds of thousands of dollars (that’s the usual guess) is changing hands here for CBS’s perverted broadcasts.

Usually the networks make their money the old-fashioned way, which in the case of true-crime shows is to champion the VICTIM. Then people become sympathetic to the victim, and so they want to keep watching, and so the advertising gets sold and the networks come out ahead.

In this case this sleazy group in this sleazy network seem to have done a deal with the devil, and the real victim, Meredith, has been quietly disappeared.

That in favor of championing a faux victim who may possibly have symptoms of psychopathia and is quite possibly guilty of sadistically torturing Meredith to an almost indescribably painful death.

Perversion of justice for very big bucks? Halderman, Longhini, van Sant, Hulse and Ciolino of CBS appear to be eager parties to an unprecedentedly despicable game.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 10/24/09 at 02:46 PM | #

Halderman, Longhini, Van Sant, Missy Hulse and Mr. Spin & Spew Ciolino represent many typical Americans only in it for the money.  No integrity, no respect, no pride, no contribution to society, no honor, no awards and no principals. (we wonder we’re flunking world leadership class?!)

If it were not for those reporters and networks that DO make a positive contribution to society none of them would have a dime to their name because no one would read or listen to ANYTHING ANYONE wrote. Thank goodness for Barbie Latza Nadeau, Andrea Vogt & Nick Pisa for their news.

The lard butts who are too lazy to get the real story and report it accurately ought to be on their knees to the hard working and honest journalists of the world who save their ass every day because THEY couldn’t make it without someone else’s skirt or coat tails to ride on.

Posted by Professor Snape on 10/24/09 at 09:42 PM | #

an aside but somewhat related is president obama’s recent criticism of fox news more or less calling the channel’s broadcasts irresponsible reporting (my words).  it seems the cable news networks offer “opinion” reporting and their ratings are most likely very high.  sadly, the days of walter cronkite, huntley and brinkley are long gone.  there is some responsible, objective reporting on the standard national news stations - abc, nbc, cbs - but it seems that cbs is attempting to compete with the cable news “opinion” stations.  many americans do find it disgusting and turn to BBC or NPR for balanced news reporting.  fox news channel and some of the other cable networks lean more toward tabloid-style reporting and, thankfully, many americans ignore it.

Posted by gramjan on 10/25/09 at 07:06 PM | #

What is truth? Media are sucked into the same war as most people. The struggle for money and prestige reveals hearts. Joe Halderman can tell it to the judge.

This is off the Halderman blackmail/Letterman subject, but I’ve been thinking about Filomena Romanelli.

The truth is in Filomena’s room.  Filomena gave Meredith the SIM card for her phone as a gift.  SIM card led police to cottage. Luca, her boyfriend, broke down the door and Meredith’s body was found. Filomena’s bedroom was the scene of Amanda’s blood mixed w/ Meredith’s in a room where that never should have occurred.

I believe Amanda’s footprint was found on a postcard lying on Filomena’s floor. It was Filomena’s toilet where Rudy Guede left feces. It was Filomena’s blowdryer that Amanda claims to have used the day of Meredith’s murder, yet none of Amanda’s fingerprints are on it.

Filomena Romanelli was suspicious of Rafaelle’s many questions about what police had asked. This was as they rode in a car together immediately after Meredith’s body was discovered. She inspected the vehicle in case Amanda and Rafaelle had planted evidence there to incriminate her.

I researched “Santa Filomena” (Saint Filomena). Lumena means light or lamp, clearness, understanding. She was tortured and martyred for refusing to give up her virginity. Her symbols are a lily, arrows, anchor, and a palm.

I realize this is a far-reach and merely poetic metaphor, but I think Filomena Romanelli’s phone conversations with Amanda, her arrival at 7 Via della Pergola with Luca Altieri,her beau, after leaving the “Fair of the Dead” to rush back to no longer a happy home but a murder scene, the broken glass scattered on clothes strewn in a bedroom which she had left orderly, it will all add up to a lot of truth.

Her light will reveal all the murderers.

Posted by Hopeful on 10/26/09 at 12:49 AM | #
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