This is an open letter regarding KPFA’s cancellation of Guns and Butter, a public affairs show that has run weekly on KPFA-FM since 2001.
Pacifica In exile’s editor, Tracy Rosenberg, was employed at the time as KPFA’s program coordinator, and in that capacity facilitated a program council at KPFA that greenlighted the program for broadcast 17 years ago. I firmly believe that over the program’s 17-year life span that it has been a service to KPFA’s listeners, has been appreciated by them and provided an important source of alternative information on a variety of issues, and has made a great deal of money for the station and for Pacifica Radio. There is no doubt that the programs’s overall impact has been beneficial. I am distressed at the cavalier treatment of a long-time programmer. Continue reading An Open Letter Regarding The Cancellation of Guns and Butter
Berkeley-Houston’s KPFT, usually the quietest and smallest of Pacifica’s five radio stations, exploded into witch hunt mode this week after a dust-up about frequently absent board member Maria Elena Castellanos trying to “rescind” her resignation a month after submitting it. After the Siegel/Brazon majority in Houston supported the absurd claim, the board doubled down and proposed suspending 4 members of the independent faction for six months for sending emails advocating that Castellano’s resignation couldn’t be taken back a month afterwards per Pacifica’s bylaws – which state board seats become vacant upon the occurrence of a resignation. The targeted board members include Bill Crosier, the former president of the Houston Peace and Justice Center, George Reiter, a professor of physics at the University of Houston, long-time KPFT volunteer Teresa Allen and Prison Show producer Hank Lamb, a former Siegel/Brazonite who broke with the faction in July of 2014 after telling them to “cut the crap” and calling for Margy Wilkinson’s removal as board chair.
Continue reading Witch Hunts Redux
Berkeley-Within days of the seating of the new KPFK local station board after the landslide victory of the Committee to Strengthen KPFK, GM Leslie Radford and roommate Adam Rice suggested to staff members the LA station was in “lockdown” after banning volunteer receptionist (and one of the Committee’s staffer candidates), Allan Coie from the station. Coie, a retired attorney, stated the reasons for his firing were that he gave out the number of the Pacifica National Office to a caller and gave program director Alan Minsky listener complaints that were called in about the substituion of Something’s Happening in the M-Th midnight to 3am hours. Coie said Radford told him the listener complaints were “personal to her”. Rice then fired him and told him he would no longer be admitted on station premises. Continue reading Lockdown
Berkeley-Notes left on a conference room white board overnight at KPFK-FM in Los Angeles outlined GM Leslie Radford’s plans to replace the station’s longstanding and popular Roy of Hollywood overnight program Something’s Happening with programs on sex, therapy, and poetry labeled “Zulu” and “Friday Night Fights”. The contents of the white board can be seen here (picture below). While it isn’t clear why Radford would leave the information exposed except to create a hostile work environment, the proposed changes target the most lucrative of the station’s evening programs. The proposed change would reduce revenues, delaying if not finishing off entirely the station’s broken promise to SAG-AFTRA union staff that they would be returned to normal work schedules. Continue reading Zulu Sex Therapy
Berkeley-Only in Berkeley will the network’s troubled board elections come to a close today, with balloting extended to January 4th in Los Angeles, NY and Houston. The election supervisor has decided to close the Northern California elections despite a large number of voters stating they haven’t gotten ballots and that their requests for replacements have gone unanswered. In last nights national board meeting, L. Joy Williams stated she had more than 600 “unread emails”, most of which are likely to be from voters trying to vote. The closing of the balloting under these circumstances runs contrary to California law which upholds the rights of eligible voters to vote and expects organizations to demonstrate a good faith effort to accommodate those who attempt to participate. If even half of the unread emails come from the Berkeley signal area, the quantity could cause a measurable change in the outcome. Continue reading More Than 600 Unread Emails
Former Siegel and Yee associate attorney Jose Luis Fuentes, who replaced his then-boss Dan Siegel on the Pacifica National Board in January of 2014, has the solution to Pacifica’s problems: jettison the executive director position and sell everything off.
Fuentes has been aggressively pursuing the Siegel/Brazon faction’s bankruptcy strategy, and spent all of Tuesday nights Pacifica governance committee meeting discussing bylaws amendments to dispense with a paid executive director permanently (the network has only had one for 7 of the last 21 months) and to enable the lame duck board to sell off assets without the permission of the network’s members and donors.
Fuentes’ boss of 12 years, Dan Siegel colluded with Margy Wilkinson when both were board members in 2013 to secretly set up a new foundation under their sole control to recover foundation assets should be they be sold off. Wilkinson then went on to orchestrate the firing of the networks ED, replace her with herself and hire Siegel as the corporate counsel.
by Bob English
Joe and Lew Hill (1879-1915) – (1919-1957)
IWW and Pacifica Radio
Two named Hill, Lew following Joe a century ago, different national, cultural and class origins; both radical humanists who died young yet contributed so much to our world with unifying, progressive missions and legacies far beyond their lifetimes. Continue reading KPFA-Pacifica Union History and Politics
Berkeley-Ten days after Pacifica’s interim controller issued a long list of accounting schedules and bank reconciliations to meet a projected start date on November 30th for the 2014 audit, it looks likely that deadline, the latest in a long series of blown deadlines, will be missed. Requests from board members for a copy of a signed engagement letter with auditor Armanino have been met with silence. The last meeting of the board’s audit committee wasn’t attended by either the committee chair or the secretary and disbanded rapidly. Continue reading Latest Audit In History
Berkeley-The Pacifica Foundation, 19 months into a coup by the Siegel/Brazon faction, is starting to project its internal demolition onto on-air operations. In the past two weeks, LA station KPFK’s website has collapsed at least three times, once for 4 entire days and the station fell off terrestrial broadcast, the website at www.pacifica.org went dark, the website at www.kpfa.org went dark, WBAI-FM aired the Progressive Radio Network’s internet stream having misplaced its own programs, and the LA archives failed, storing only 15 of the last 132 hours of programming since 6:00am on Monday November 16th. Continue reading System Breakdown
By Frank Sterling
I was astonished to read the latest edition of Save KPFA and its attack on local station board member Janet Kobren. As we all may have heard, the $400,000 bequest left to the Pacifica Foundation was almost grabbed by KPFA for its sole use.
So who has sunk to the “new low” of “sleazy politics”, the person who has pointed out the mistake or the people who show their greed by hoarding the money for themselves to dole it out as they see fit? And their intense expression of hatred and vitriol for a person whose fiduciary duty it is to oversee funds for our network and who pointed out the mistake. Continue reading What’s The “New Low” and Who Is “Sleazy”?