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Professional Conspiracy Debunker Claims Friendship with Deborah Jeane Palfrey
May 1, 2008
Dan Moldea tells us he was Deborah Jeane Palfrey’s friend. Moldea, an an independent crime reporter, wanted to write a book on Palfrey. Now that Palfrey is dead, Moldea tells us she confided in him. “She wasn’t going to jail, she told me that very clearly. She told me she would commit suicide,” Moldea tells Time Magazine. “She had done time once before [for prostitution],” Moldea recalls. “And it damn near killed her. She said there was enormous stress — it made her sick, she couldn’t take it, and she wasn’t going to let that happen to her again.” Instead of enduring anywhere between 71 months to 55 years in prison, Deborah Jeane Palfrey decided instead to kill herself.
Larry Flynt, Hustler publisher and free speech advocate, is having nothing of it. “I think the media should be very cautious in treating this as a suicide,” Flynt told Fox News in a telephone interview from his Beverly Hills office. Fox asked if he believes Palfrey was murdered and Flynt responded, “I personally believe that’s what happened, but I have no proof.” Flynt worked with Moldea, described as an “investigative reporter” by Fox, “to break the story that the phone number of Sen. David Vitter, R-La., was among those numbers in Palfrey’s client list. Flynt targeted Vitter because he had campaigned for office on a family-values platform.” Vitter remains in office and has not been censured, even though he came under intense public criticism.
“She did not have the demeanor of the type of person that would carry certain signs of suicide, like being withdrawn or depressed,” Flynt told Fox. “You know, those are the kinds of signs that you look for. She didn’t display any of those traits… She was very friendly… Very bright. She was by no means a dummy. She knew what she was doing.” Fox headlines the story with Flynt’s comments thus, “Death of ‘D.C. Madam’ Becomes Rich Ground for Conspiracy Theory,” leading the casual reader to conclude that asking obvious questions about a woman who threatened to out VIP clients is nothing short of conspiratorialist hyperbole.
Palfrey told Alex Jones and his audience as recently as March that she would under no circumstances take her own life. She did say however that she was at risk of being killed and that authorities would make it look like suicide. (Listen to Palfrey’s interview with Alex Jones here.)
As it now stands, Palfrey’s “friend,” Dan Moldea, is the only source, quoted by numerous newspapers and news websites, most notably Time, to claim an intimate understanding of the mental condition of the so-called D.C. Madam. As should be expected, the corporate media has taken Moldea’s assertions as gospel: Palfrey, unable to face years in prison, killed herself. It is, for the corporate media, a tidy way to close the case and not breach a larger and more far more portentous issue — Deborah Jeane Palfrey, who threatened to release the names of well-known clients of her call girl business in Washington, had made an unknown number of powerful enemies that wanted her dead. She had indicated Dick Cheney may have been one of her customers.
However, there are problems with the testimony of Dan Moldea, problems that put his assertion about Palfrey in question. “In 1995, Dan Moldea wrote his apologia for the LAPD… for their handling of the Robert F. Kennedy assassination,” writes Jim DiEugenio for Probe. It appears Moldea fabricated a Sirhan B. Sirhan quote. “Moldea had provided Sirhan B. Sirhan a chance to fact-check an eight-page report culled from his visits with the prisoner,” writes DiEugenio. Moldea claims Sirhan had wanted to shoot Kennedy between the eyes, but “that son of a bitch turned his head at the last second.” Sirhan denied such an exchange and Sirhan’s brother Adel, present during Moldea’s visit, also denied the exchange took place. Moreover, Lynn Mangan, Sirhan’s chief researcher, found the comment hardly tenable. “I flatly deny making the statement Moldea ascribes to me in his book,” Sirhan declared in a letter to Mangan.
Moldea’s book on the RFK assassination is nothing more than an echo of the official story — Sirhan acted alone — thus cementing his reputation as a “conspiracy debunker,” never mind his sloppy work on RFK and Sirhan.
Is it possible he is once again attempting to debunk a “conspiracy,” this time that Deborah Jeane Palfrey did not commit suicide and was in fact killed for what she knew and what she appeared ready to reveal?
It is awful suspicious that Dan Moldea suddenly surfaces, within hours of Palfrey’s alleged suicide, to claim friendship and a unique insight into the woman’s mental condition. It is suspicious because Moldea has established his reputation as a “conspiracy” buster and because he has an apparent history of creating quotes out of thin air.
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