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March 23, 2009

Bill O'Reilly sics producer on female blogger who criticized host's record on rape

Amanda Terkel, a writer for the popular progressive blog Think Progress, reports that she was stalked and harassed by a producer for the O'Reilly Factor after she observed that Factor host Bill O'Reilly blamed an 18-year-old for her own rape and murder on air and subsequently agreed to host a fundraiser for a non-profit group that supports rape survivors. (Audio clip of O'Reilly's rant, here.)

Terkel describes what happened next:

This weekend, while on vacation, I was ambushed by O’Reilly’s top hit man, producer Jesse Watters, who accosted me on the street and told me that because I highlighted O’Reilly’s comments, I was causing “pain and suffering” to rape victims and their families. He of course offered no proof to back up this claim, instead choosing to shout questions at me.

I expect O’Reilly to air this “interview” at some point this week, possibly as early as tonight. I have no expectation that he will show the entire altercation or give the entire story about what happened, so here is the full account, offering a glimpse inside the O’Reilly harassment machine.

Terkel says she was surveilled, followed, and accosted on the street by producer Jesse Watters and a cameraman. They found her in Winchester, VA, a two-hour drive from her home in Washington, DC. Since Terkel didn't tell anyone where she was going, she infers Watters and his camera operator staked out her apartment and followed her to Virginia.

Watters demanded to know why Terkel was causing "pain and suffering" to the Alexa Foundation, even though Terkel never criticized the non-profit in her post. She merely pointed out a certain tension between O'Reilly's on air pronouncements about a dead 18-year-old rape victim and his appearance at a fundraiser for a group that supports survivors of sexual assault.

O'Reilly had no compunctions about how the family of the victim, Jennifer Moore, might feel when he called her a "moronic girl" on the air and implied that she was responsible for her own death because she was a 5-foot-2, 105lb woman in a crop top who had been drinking.

Lots of other blogs picked up on O'Reilly's outrageous statements, including the Media Matters. The Factor wouldn't explain why Amanda Terkel was singled out for a confrontation. Amanda writes, "Since I’m a 5 ft, 100 pound woman with an opinion that he doesn’t like, perhaps O’Reilly believes I deserve to be treated this way."

Bill O'Reilly is a notorious bully of both men and women. In 2004, O'Reilly was forced to pay over $2 million to settle a sexual harassment suit brought against him by his former producer Andrea Mackris.

And who can forget O'Reilly's demagogic tirades against feminist bloggers Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McKewan?

Daily Show host Jon Stewart recently satirized O'Reilly for accosting even casual critics on the street and then excoriating reporters for violating the privacy of their subjects.


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FOX "news" owner Rupert Murdoch's intent is to clearly threaten critics into silence.

Rupert Murdoch's right wing extremism has degenerated from his indulging his pet thug Sean Hannity, to promoting the clearly insane Glen Beck, to now sanctioning predator Bill O'Reilly's stalker Jesse Watters.

But this isn't about the sick behavior of Rupert Murdoch's TV thugs anymore. This is about Rupert Murdoch's personal responsibility in enabling predatory stalking. Murdoch's FOX "news" thugs have been flirting with fascism for years but this is clearly crossing a line into deliberately threatening behavior.

Rupert Murdoch is paying stalkers to harass American citizens. Rupert Murdoch is deliberately trying to intimidate and threaten American citizens through the thugs working for his international "News Corporation." Rupert Murdoch is coordinating this mafia thug behavior to silence critics through fear and intimidation tactics.

Murdoch and his sons are deliberately trying to poison the political discourse and whip up militant extremists.

Murdoch and his sons needs to be forever tied to these threatening mafia tactics.

Be very clear: The Murdoch's and their FOX stalkers are un-American, they have NO loyalty to America.

Murdoch employees need to realize that they are now working for a un-American organization of thugs with NO loyalty to America. That's their chose and their right. Free speech implies that even fascists get a TV channel. But MURDOCH EMPLOYEES NEED TO UNDERSTAND THAT THEY ARE NOW WORKING AGAINST AMERICA.

By any standard of decency it would be wrong to stake out FOX stations and follow those employees to their homes. Unfortunately those employers now work for an owner that sanctions and even pays stalker predators to do exactly that.

O'Reilly is a spectacular asshole. I gather that even Murdoch doesn't like him.

I would suggest that in the future, if anyone is accosted by Jesse Watters, they should warn him that if he doesn't leave them alone immediately, they will consider any further actions threatening and take appropriate actions.

If he doesn't stop and turn to leave immediately, the person being accosted should empty a can of mace into Mr. Watters' face, call the police and file charges.

"Media Matters" notes that Bill O'Reilly implied in 2007 that he only uses "ambush journalism" to hold "public servants accountable for their actions, and we do not go after people lightly. We always ask them on the program first or to issue a clear statement explaining their actions."

Amanda Terkel isn't a public servant (nor are plenty other people ambushed for "The O'Reilly Factor," some of whom are journalists.)

Jon Stewart shows an "O'Reilly Factor" producer bothering journalists Bill Arkin, Cynthia Tucker, and others while they're in the middle of chores.

Can she not take these guys to court? At the very least she could get a restraining order against these assholes, couldn't she?

P.S. O'Reilly strikes me as sociopathic. Does anyone think this flaming rageaholic can turn it off at the end of the day when he's home with his family?

She is a fraud and is a liar and was manipulated by the morons at NBC to blab about something she knew nothing about. And you are advising her to take who to court? So that she can ruin her life? Does anyone on here know the facts or are you all driven by misinformation and idiocy; not to mention utter delusion.

Amanda Terkel looked foolish on The Factor. Dishonest, evil and clueless.

I don't agree with O'Reilly's tactic. It's interesting though, that you're avoiding the fact that you were caught in either a huge lie or an incredible show of incompetence. It took all of a minute's googling to show from many sources (including the original audio which you clipped to support your false claim) that O'Reilly's accusation is completely true.

Trolls (Jonny, Dennis, Jeanette), go back to The Corner.

>that O'Reilly's accusation is completely true.

Ok, I'm game for going down the rabbit hole. Let's step through this:

Are you saying Orielly's "accusation" that the girl involved was drunk, without a car, and dressed to go out clubbing was true? If so, I'm not even going to bother to google it. Because the point is, it doesn't matter.

I can go down to Granville street most nights here and find hundreds of drunk, skimpily dressed girls looking for a taxi. They have EVERY RIGHT to behave that way, whether it's wise or not, and can mostly expect to be perfectly safe.

Orielly blamed the victim. He verged close to saying she had it coming. How is this so different from the taliban saying that a women who goes out without a veil had her own murder coming? The only difference is the dress code involved.

Not only that, he blamed the murdered girl and disparaged her in a very public forum where her family could hear it. I'm sorry, but your hero appears to be sociopathically cruel and irresponsible.

Ah, I watched the Orielly clip. Nice, now that's how you do Professional hate mongering!

Anyways, the key issue here is now obvious: Orielly sees a great difference between the first victim he mentions, a student attacked in her dorm room, and the second at issue, who was attacked while out clubbing. The virtuous female who did not deserve her crime, and the conservative-social-code contravening one who did.

But neither of them did. And when I was in my 20's, really any one of my female friends could have fit both roles on different days of the week.

Sure, Oreilly uses his show to go to bat for victims of crime - but only while they're following his personal values. Anyone who doesn't apparently deserves their fate. And anyone who contradicts them, must be part of a vast conspiricy against him, and deserving of lynching.

The woman they interviewed was clearly a normal, thoughtful female blogger who came across as such. She merely made an observation applying an absolutely mainstream ethical code to a publicly available radio clip. To believe a conspiracy with the head of NBC must have been involved is so delusional it puts Orielly's mental health into question.

Once again Billo sent his thugs to harass anyone who exposes his hypocrisy. He does not have an ensemble of integrity to answer the critiques so he resorts to these vile methods that diametrically oppose anything that a journalist is supposed to be.

Amanda, along with other O'Reilly's harassment journalism, should have requested those two stalkers to leave her alone, then slowly as she walks away from them, call 911 and report that two strangers, despite the fact she has asked them to stop following her, would not leave her. As the stalk picks up, she should then run and yell at the 911 operator to immediately dispatch help as she would not feel safe with her being followed by two men twice her size.

Another method is to just simply ignore the "producer" (i.e. Watters in this case) and stare right at the camera lens while unleashing a tirade at O'Reilly and his sexual harassment he subjected his producer with. One must go into every detail of the ordeal as this would not leave a single frame usable for his hate show.

They have EVERY RIGHT to behave that way

You're God damned right they do. We only go 'round once and we have a right to have a good time while we're at it.

Mr. O'Reilly, if you'd stop your pontificating and bullying for a moment to pull the stick out of your ass, you might be able to relax and join the party.

As a father of three daughters and one son I would advise none of them to walk around scantily dressed at two in the morning, because there are predators out there.

I would not advise women to drink or men to drink and walk around two in the morning because there are predators out there.

I would not advise anyone to walk around alone at two in the morning because there are predators out there.

Such behavior could be described as moronic, but that would not be my choice of words. I would say risky.

Futhermore, drinking, alone, getting into someone's car who you don't know is risky. The only place where O'reilly and I disagree is in the use of the word moronic to describe risky.

Amanda Terkel is a first rate professional who told the truth. Did any of you who are accusing her of being evil actually read the blog post that inspired the stalking from Bill O'Reilly? It's linked to in the post, above.

All Terkel did was juxtapose O'Reilly's comment about Jennifer Moore being a "moronic girl" who was drunk on the West Side highway with the fact that he was speaking at the Alexa Foundation, which benefits survivors of sexual assault. That's ironic as hell, and no indictment to the Alexa Foundation.

Amanda didn't even mention that Billo had to pay over two million dollars for sexually harassing his own employee. That's the biggest irony of all, and hardly the fault of the non-profit.

The random nonsense about Mel Gibson that the producer mentions during the ambush is a red herring, not evidence that Terkel is lying about anything. The producer asks her whether she's heard the audio clip that she wrote about. Terkel says yes. The producer says, "What was his point about Mel Gibson?" Amanda doesn't answer and the producer accuses her of lying.

BTW, the original post was a two paragraph item that went up on March 1, so it's not like Amanda wrote it yesterday. Of course, she had no warning that she was going to get accosted by a camera crew while she was on vacation. That's how these losers have to play. Of course they wouldn't have her on the show because she'd win.

Billo was saying that Mel Gibson got himself into trouble by getting drunk, just like Jennifer Moore. Gibson was driving drunk and became sexually and racially abusive to the cops who pulled him over. So the two cases are hardly parallel, but Billo's point was exactly what Amanda was complaining about: O'Reilly was implying that the late 18-year-old Jennifer Moore was responsible for getting raped and murdered the way that Mel Gibson was responsible for getting pinched for drunk driving and calling the arresting officer "sugar tits."

Ron: You probably also wouldn't say that about another father's dead daughter on national radio.

U R an ignorant female idiot

As a father of three daughters and one son I would advise none of them to walk around scantily dressed at two in the morning, because there are predators out there.

Good, move to a gated community out in the 'burbs, get a top end burglar alarm system, put new batteries in the smoke alarms, get the car rated safest by consumer reports, watch your salt intake, drink no more than two glasses of wine with dinner, invest wisely, swim only where you're sure it's safe, don't travel to third world countries, cull everything in the fridge that's past the sell-by date, and live a long and tedious life.

You got what you deserved! Next time actually listen to the FULL story and report/blog ACCURATELY instead of picking out piece meal to suit your own agenda! Stop twisting the truth and lying to the public - you should be ashamed, not just for the insulting way you degraded rape victims, but also at how you've further dragged news reporting further into the toilet!

You're disgusting Amanda and you got what you deserved, I hope more people - especially rape victims and victim advocates hunt you down and harrass you further, you get what you deserve, report truthfully and do your research next time, but even before that - APOLOGIZE!!! Admit you didn't do your research and your misreported/blogged and apologize to the rape victims and thank Bill O'Reilly for setting you straight!


Ron, you should teach your children not to rape people. The source of rape is rapists, and I'm a fan of stopping problems at their source.

damn ...

all other comments stand for themselves (you go amanda m) I wonder if Bill OReilly has ever lived in Tampa?

Sounds like he runs his own friggin gang. (maybe they fertilized him here in this evil hole)
And then tarred, feathered and run out of town. Just don't run him this way. I have my hands full. Bill could always be a Tampa Fireman when he gets out of PRISON. Long as he has a driver's license. Sorry for your experience amanda terkel.
Completely left out of all the supposing is that the girl might have had something slipped in her drink.
Someone in my family has been drugged THREE TIMES by those who threaten my family. Warnings. Just to say WE COULD KILL YOU WHEN WE WANT TO ...
THAT IS AN EVIL M'FER .. not a blogger who points out the sickness which is oreillyland.
You want to know about evil??
I can tell you about some evil bastards.
Watch your ass, amanda this probably isn't the end of this.
(sorry to sound ... like fear factor, just speaking from experience)
Keep speaking your mind. Never give in to any fear for even one moment.

lesley it's MUCH HARDER than one thinks to get restraining orders. I have an UTTER PIG who lives quite close to me on video SHOOTING AT ME or at least in my direction (shooting at ALL around these parts is ILLEGAL) while I was walking my dog. Purposely. Because he wants my property. They want to force you to get an attorney so then the pig can get an attorney so then you can go broke attorney to attorney. If they can trick you into the court system with the corruption and racketeering in Tampa Fl where all the judges went to school with all the stalkers. (pay your fees get your bees tampa u et. al sorry in advance to any actual brilliant people who attended tampa u I know there are some) they have you over a barrel.
It's hard to dispute a gunshot on video.
So I have become more creative.
Amanda's tactic is good.
Like you I believe(D) in the law and the justice system. It's not there for us at times. In fact, when I went to file the complaint the woman who is WITH the state's attorney's office knew how to pronounce the stalker's name PERFECTLY where I had never heard it said before. I said, 'wow, I had no idea how to say that.' She said, (with obvious dismay) "i'm just reading what I see here." hmmmm
Anyway.. sorry to be verbose but I agree with you, just pointing out how it really works. When a goddamn WOMAN will screw over a woman who needs help with getting a stalking pig OFF HER there is something very wrong with the entire system here in Tampa. How did such a person slither through the system?? She actually questioned me like a detective.
Her ploy was to discourage me.
At any rate, my petition was unsuccessful.
one thing is that it is NOW a matter of public record.
Which in itself is a form of protection.
Again, sorry to be verbose.

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