Site hosted by Build your free website today!


My Favorite things about Pacifica.

This is the web page for transcription of Pacifica Radio events by A. Solomon. Now have completed transcribing Saturday, March 25 2006 Pacifica National Board regular meeting in Los Angeles, Part 7 - 1 hour 29 minutes.

This web page last updated 2:19 a.m. Wednesday 2006-05-10-- with several improvements courtesy of James Ross, Ph.D. The most significant of which was where David Adelson says, "But I don't see Indra as a person who is . . ." I had put "Bernard" but now it sounds as though he was saying "Indra."

Thanks, Jamie! As I said, suggestions or corrections are welcome. The actual sound files are open to the public on and at least one other site, I believe.

Thank you for visiting my page at Angelfire. Please come back and visit again!

09:28 Indra Hardat - WBAI Interim General Manager (iGM): Uh we need a safe, equitable work environment, and I am surprised that uh you know incidental violence has been downplayed. Because it's really happening! I've been the victim of uh verbal abuse. Uh, more than three times in the last month, or so. I'll talk about that in a little bit but before I talk about that I have to give a little background. About, my previous position at BAI. 10:05 [skip]

12:02 So, my next page [pause]. For folks to understand the conditions I've been forced to work in I have to give you a little background. There are certain staff, LSB members, and producers at the station who never ever wanted me to be the iGM. From the inception. And have never hesitated from showing it. So that's a fact. As business manager after the takeback Pacifica except? for Valerie Van Isler who was in the same position I am in today. She was attacked almost on a weekly basis by a different member of staff and she took it quietly. Folks, I am not going to take it quietly, I'm not gonna swallow, umm, because I'm a woman and I'm one of color, I'm not gonna take the abuse. Umm, so Valerie took it for a number of years, until she was so demonized that she was determined? the enemy and really she was never the enemy. All she was trying to do was to stay objective and not to belong to any of the camps. So she was basically the independent party and that's where I am. I'm the independent party, uh, to not believe in any factions or any things like that.

13:42 Anyway, ehm [pause] okay [pause] so we think? after the Pacifica takeback, the folks who were banned and fired held resentment for the folks who were not banned and fired. But they simply ignored the contribution of the staff both paid and unpaid, who kept the institution going. They had no idea how unpleasant the working environment was. And, I don't even think that they cared. And the last thing I want to say is, that, we need to have dialog with the Programming Department, and perhaps mediation, but uh we need to work if we want to move the station forward, we need to have uh a lot of dialog and communication because so far I've been sitting in the iGM desk for ten months and, any kind of program changes or any kind of uh preemptions, any special programming, I've not been included, I have not been told. And, one of the reasons is that I've been, accused of not being qualified in radio or programming, and that's the reason why I'm not included. Perhaps. I dunno if that's the whole reason. I think because I'm a woman. And, in any event that's my report and thank you very much. [applause] 15:26 [skip]

16:25 Bernard White - WBAI Program Director:

Okay. First of all, I wanna thank ah, thank Greg Guma for inviting me to come out this afternoon and make a presentation. As you know uh we don't get this opportunity, I don't get the opportunity, too often. And uh there are a lot of things that have been, have been said. I really would like you to ask me questions about those things. I won't uh deal with them right now just give the, part of the presentation I want to make. I have changed it last, as of what happened last night. And now it seems like I need to chage it again. But I'll just go with, what's here.

17:06 First of all as I said I want to thank you for inviting me to speak this afternoon about some of the important issues confronting WBAI. In order to understand what is going on at WBAI one must have an appreciation of the context in which our history is unfolding. We are suffering from what I characterize as posttraumatic coup syndrome. This syndrome has various elements, I want to share some of these elements with you today so that you may have a greater understanding of what is in fact occurring at WBAI.

I also have some documents to pass out to you. Um, perhaps that could happen now. Contrary to manipulated beliefs we're not just a bunch of crazies. There are some extremely hardworking people at WBAI, dedicated to the Pacifica mission, but whose positive efforts are being weakened by the unconstructive polarizing counteractivity of others. Although the primary players who executed the events that led to a nationwide campaign to rescue Pacifica are gone, many of their supporters are still around and are openly collaborating with a small but well-financed group of individuals who are actively involved in a public campaign to destabilize WBAI.

It was about a year ago when I came to the PNB meeting that was held in Washington, DC to bring this issue to your attention. I was seeking your assistance in eliminating what I perceived to be an escalating problem with distinct racist overtones that would increasingly impact on the financial solvency of WBAI. It was my hope at that time that you would recognize the problem and act accordingly. Many of you who are here now were not a part of the PNB at that time. However once again I'm asking you to gain an appreciation of what is happening at WBAI and recognize the negative consequences it must be having on our ability to meet our escalating financial obligations.

WBAI's LSB to its credit in recognition of the serioueness of this issue has disassociated itself from the comments of this destructive campaign's chief architect, financier, and spokesperson. You have before you a copy of the most recent attack on the station. It meticulously and in great detail describes an event that never took place. These venomous poison-pen EMails have been distributed across the country and throughout our listening community for years without any challenge from people in authority in Pacifica.

20:00 I get calls from friends around the country as well as in our listening area who want to know what's going on at WBAI. Last week my landlord asked me what is going on at the station, because he received a copy of one of these EMails. The author of these emails is quite prolific. He spits them out on a regular basis, either before or shortly after one or our drives. I'm sure that members of this august body have probably been the recipients of a few of these misguided missives over the years. I'm sure that there are those who receive these fabrications and believe that since this person is a WBAI board member, his allegations have some validity. I'm also sure that some of those individuals have decided that they are not going to donate money to an insittution that is engaged in the activities that are alleged in these emails, and I don't blame them. They accuse the station of being homophobic, racist, anti-Semitic, misogynist, etcetera etcetera etcetera.

Pacifica stations all exist on a very delicate balance that has a special feature: a unique trust in our institutions. It is that trust that separates us from commercial outlets, that moves our listeners to support us with their monetary donations. As long as we can maintain that trust, we will survive. Once that trust is shattered we can begin to count the days to our demise. The activities of this group are undermining, with-- undermining the trust that we have developed over the years. The fact that it is also a personal attack on me is significant, but not nearly as important as what it is doing to the institution.

I have chosen not to engage in a public urinating contest. 22:02. I have been waiting and calling for an institutional response to actions that are the antithesis of what Pacifica and WBAI stands [sic] for. Hopefully we are closer to the day that a decisive response emerges from this institution.

Now I want to turn to the issue of programming. I had another presentation prepared as I said 22:29 but as you may recall last evening some of my colleagues passed out some information about items about which they have some concerns. I think that's a good thing, because it illustrates that there is also an internal component to the problems that I faced as Program Director in this period. I don't get, I didn't get a copy of their materials, so I haven't read them. I didn't even know they were coming. However, I want to speak briefly about each issue.

The issue of Gary Null and Robert Knight are personnel issues and it would be improper to discuss the details of their severed relationship with WBAI in a public forum. However, the issue of a gag rule at WBAI is a bogus issue, but an important one nonetheless. There is no gag rule at WBAI! If you talk to the producers and ask them if I have ever told them that they could not discuss any issue, you will find that I have never spoken to anyone about topics that they could not [knocking sound blanks out one word or less likely could have been longer section missing from stream] talk? about on their program. What I have said however is that the air is not the proper place to discuss issues that can only be resolved through internal dialog. I have also said that the air is not the place to level attacks against their colleagues and listeners. Yet and still some producers have turned this type of radio into an art form. They are still on the air and continue to exhibit this behavior. So once again there is no gag rule at WBAI.

Latino programming: I am unaware of the contents of what was passed out last night by WBAI News Director Jose, Jose Santiago as it relates to Latino programming at WBAI. But here is some information about what is in fact the growth of Latino-produced programming at WBAI. In this post-coup period I have added a variety of Latino producers and [unintelligible] Latino-produced programs to our weekly schedule. Luis Reyes Rivera [spelling?] does a weekly arts program called Perspectives. Professor Howard Jordan [spelling?] does a weekly public affairs program entitled Jordan's Journal. We've added a weekly Spanish language public affairs program entitled Labos? Latina. In April we will be adding, now I hear it's May, the 30-minute Latino national news program.

This issue is not about Latino programming at WBAI, it is about a few Latino producers who have misled segments of the Latino community and now you by telling them that programs produced and hosted by Latino producers are under attack and about to be eliminated. What has in fact happened is that out of a four hour block of Latino music, primarily salsa, that we hear each Sunday I've attempted to inject a one hour bilingual program that would explore the newly emerging political realities in South and Central America and their nexus to US foreign policy, hosted by a young Latino collective. The name of the program is Lengua Suelta? It not only will explore South and Central America but also Latin-Caribbean nations and the fight of of immigrant populations domestically and particularly in our listehning area. You might ask Why, since that Latino programming is being added and there is now more Latino-produced programming and more Latino producers than there ever has been at WBAI, what is the problem?

The problem is that this newly formed collective is in opposition to my adding this program during a time that they believe belongs to them. I disagree with their premise. This time belongs to WBAI, to organize in a manner that it feels will best serve its listening audience and generate revenue. Further, they have used the airwaves to mislead the Latino community into believing that Latino producers are being threatened. Once again, no gag rule has been employed. Anyone who rejects their arguments is accused of being at best insensitive to Latino concerns or at worst anti-Latino. Any Latinos who object are accused of not really being Latinos [titters]. In the final analysis, I believe that the faulty basis of their arguments will be revealed. In the interim, I believe that an unavoidable, unnecessary battle will ensue.

There is a lot more that I want to share with you but time does not permit. So, in closing, I am reminded of the poem by Maya Angelou, and I was told that it is "And still I rise" but I think it's "And still we rise." In spite of the deliberate overt attempts by a small and dwindling group to sabotage our efforts, we continue to move forward. During my tenure as Program Director we have increased the number of youth who are involved in programming and they have made their way into prominent, responsible positions in the radio production process. We have doubled the number of women who are directly involved in our programming. These women produce programs on a wide variety of issues from their perspective. I must note that that this perspective needs to be broadened to include women from a wider variety of communities and experiences. However, we have made a start.

One of the country's most rapidly increasing populations results from the nationwide expansion of the Prison-Industrial Complex. This rapid expansion places a massive amount of pressure on the communities that supply the inhabitants of these prisons. In response to this caustic social phenomenon we now have a regularly scheduled prison program that addresses the issues of the prison population, the families of the prisoners, and the communities to which they return.

This program also provides our listeners with a behind-the-walls view of prison life and the crime-generative factors that have directed large segments of our population into incarceration. This program is conceptualized, produced, and executed by male and female former prisoners. I would like to see this program become available to a national audience.

In the area of health--

David Adelson - Chairperson - KPFK (Listener): Bernard, it's been about fifteen minutes so if you have a sum-up statement? Then we could do some of this in uh Q&A and get, the rest of your comments in writing so we have a full list of the programming.

BW: Okay I have a--

Ray Laforest - WBAI (Listener): [Unintellible] how much time is left from the presentation?

DA: Uh, well in the whole item we have now about 14 minutes for questions and answers for all of them out of 45 minutes.

BW: I'll stop here because I uh I'm sure that there 29:52, as a result of what has been happening there probably are a lot of questions people have and I want to make sure that we get an opportunity to address and so, I will leave it there and uh, and thank you.


Yeah and I suspect we're gonna need to spend time beyond just ten more minutes because uh, I just had this feelin' I dunno-- Uh, so, can, can we agree that we'll spend about 20 more minutes on Q&A from here? Is that all-right so that we don't interrupt the flow of conversation? Hearing no objections, oh God [muttering]. We'll start with Lisa, we'll go then?

Lisa Davis - WBAI (Listener):

Needless to say we've heard quite a bit here this evening. And uh some of it, I wasn't even that familiar with. I just want to say one thing real quickly, cause whenever I hear the term "false allegations of racism" especially considering some of the comments that were made, describing two black men as frothing by the mouth and aping each other, describing the black community. This was by an LSB member, and I being in an area where I could get get gunned down, knifed almost every day not to mention other insensitive comments made. I'm angry that people talk about false allegations of racism, and they don't address that. It shows me what side they're choosing. Because I think that's very insensitive. And I just want to remind everybody real quickly: You saw a tremendous gathering today, of people gathering out in the street and marching and, all of that kind of stuff. I want to remind everybody that didn't happen because of freedom and everybody had these laws. You know, remember, go back and view the tape and see who were the ones that were bein', beat and attacked with, you know dogs and stuff like that. They were also accused of making a lot of false allegations at them there too. I'm on this side all the time. And we need to go back and review that history definitely.

Quite a few things were said, Indra one of the things that I would like to specifically ask you about: Um I know you, you've made some allegations such as uh you know your bein' under attack, how you felt things were going and, about certain LSB members disliking you and stuff. And I've always been under the belief that when people make any kind allegations they should be a little bit more pointed and in fact one of the things and especially since Greg Guma spoke to this earlier-- and this is how a lot of rumors get started and I think it needs to be addressed [unintelligible] you're going to bring this up.

But at an LSB meeting you made an allegation, and I don't have the exact wording, but an allegation about there being [unintelligible] this was how the issue came up, you know uh the questions came up asking what was going on, what was going on at the National Office and, the CFO from the National Office being in New York, which made at a public meeting. Allegations indicating that there was fraud going on. And corruption, I think corruption was the word that you used. And, without backing it up it appears that there was nothing factual about it. I would just like to ask how you, you reconcile the fact that a lot of people are making a lot of allegations that are not factual and if they are they're not presenting anything with it. And again? to an allegation to a name? and we have one example, you said that? And you heard? something completely different so-- how did you come to that?

IH: I'll tell you what happened--


Wait before you go there if it's something that is properly a confidential matter I wanna do it in executive session, and I don't want to have a discussion about anything that could give us a liability in these public sessions. So go ahead and answer. After that I wanna ask the Board members to restrict their comments to 90 seconds; we have no more than ten, that's 15 minutes right there with no response however? that [unintelligible]--

Unidentified Male: Just so it's understood, my characterization of it was that it was a problem of miscommunication, and I do think [inaudible 3 words] my comments would be uh [inaudible].

LD: I wasn't [unintell.] I was commenting what you said, I wasn't politicizing anything.

IH: Well, it wasn't a [unintell.] obligation. Something happened where 34:02 a member went to a bank, a local bank without telling me anything, and took an ex-member of the board, of the national office, to, get a PIN number [unintelligible]. But because it wasn't communicated the bank called me saying that this persons's no longer a signatory of the account; what was he doing in the bank or what was going on? And because I didn't know, about the other person going to the bank to establish a PIN for doing business at national level it was necessary for them to get a PIN to do some banking, uh actually they were reviewing? bank recommendation? But had they communicated that to me I would have gone to the bank because-- The person, one of the persons was a valid signatory on the account, but the other person was not. And uh of course as a matter of fact the other person was taken off, I think it was September of last year, so the person wasn't a signatory of the account for over six months so, it is not an allegation. It happened.

LD: But you phrased it as corruption.

DA: You want to respond to that-- [crosstalk]

LD: You phrased it as curruption. I don't--

IH: No, I wasn't referring to that as corruption, I was referring to other corruption that happened at the station. There were many, incidents of corruption I can't say-- I'll be all night telling you about it. And half of the staff will be fired for it! [Two people say ooooo.]

DA: I'm not interested in public discussion about that. Just so people [crosstalk] discuss things like this. Actually affect lawsuits, lawsuits ever happen: "The following was said in public discussion da da da" and uh just so everybody understands when we get sued it's a big problem for us so, we're gonna do this in executive session. Also [unintelligible]-- I'd like to get an opportunity for the non-BAI directors to ask questions, I'm finished with the BAI directors. So, was it Theresa? Go ahead, I've asked Deb to time me at 90 seconds.

Theresa Allen? - KPFT (Listener): Um, I have four very quick questions. Number one, did you say that people verbally, on staff, and you're supervising them, and they verbally, or physically, attacked. Why would you not counsel them, and have them banned from the building. I don't understand why, I certainly wouldn't supervise somebody that attacked me, who was insubordinate. Physically or psychologically intimidated me.

IH: Verbal abuse, ahh, I thought, I think we can work it out but seems like we can't-- we'll try to have some sort of mediation, try to work it out. The other 36:57 folks that uh made were uh part of physical violence, physical violence. There are three different people who were banned from the station.

TA: Okay--

IH: Eh, within the past ten months. The other person who came in recently was banned before but for some reason was-- wasn't banned by me, that was prior to my time but he was there, I think, earlier this week.

TA: So these people have been dealt with and, and you're working with the HR Director so it's not just complaining about a situation that nothing's been done about.

IH: No, one situation still exists. We're um, one of my colleagues and I have some kind of problem. We have to solve it. 37:37

TA: Hopefully expeditiously handled.

IH?: Thank you.

TA: I have to say, in January when I heard your report you talked about youth programming. I happen to know that youth programming is over two years old. So it doesn't sound new. And you're talking about a prison show, and you're talk-- it sounds like you're suggesting an innovative but how long has that show been on? On [unintelligible]. I mean, years, right?

BW: It's been on for years, but what I was trying to-- I, I stopped my report, so, [TA speaking over] what I was trying to s--

TA: But, but, I want to know what you're doing to do things that are positive and innovating. Not kind of suggest that shows have been on. Unless it's won an award you can say such and such-- I wanna hear something that's new, so can you tell me something that's new about the women's programming or, youth programming or a program that's new--

BW: Sure I can. What I was attempting to do-- one of the programs we did had a group of younger people called Latewa Suerla--

TA: Is it new? Is it started yet on the--

BW: It's--

TA: When did it start?

BW: It started about uh, well it's been a pilot project, so it hasn't really started yet.

TA: Hasn't started. l

BW: Right. But. They've been on the air a coupla times. And uh it is a group of young people who have connections with--

TA: That's great. What about women's [unintelligible], [unintelligible] of women?--

DA: I'm sorry. I'm gonna cut it off because we're gonna allot 90 seconds to Board members to ask questions, about a minute and a half for a response. Otherwise, it will just bog down. Ah Many members want to speak. You have a final comment in 20 seconds or less?

TA: When I was at 90 seconds and I asked the question fairly quickly, I was thinking of Yes, No, here's the program. He should be able to respond within, 90 seconds, to, give me an answer.

DA: Okay. Ah, Did I see another hand over on this side of the aisle? 39:38 Over here, Don?

Don White? - KPFK (Listener): Yes, I don't know if you're willing to correct this but, during public comment today we had a public comment that I think kind of shocked, the board and kind of, like, had a great impact. It was from a person of color who, had been physically assaulted. Allegedly, he's not alleging, I'm saying he said he was physically assaulted and that the individual who physically assaulted him is now allowed back in the station. Now I don't wanna specifically focus in on one incident. But then we hear from a woman of color who's the General Manager of WBAI, that she feels she has been abused. Umm, my question really has to do with the whole culture of WBAI and whether or not there is a culture of respect. Whether the General Manager is like in charge. And the Program Director feels that the General Manager is in control of the station, there's a collaborative relationship going on-- I guess my question to both is, is there kind of a culture at WBAI at the present time that could be in any way threatening to people who entered the buliding? Or, are, is oppressive or abusive on a continuing basis?

IH: I'd say No. Not, not eh you know, there are a few instances, it's happening one, one time too many. But it's happening, and there are some folks who can be quite aggressive over there. And uh, the incident that happened, it happened before my time was real, where Paul Ashley? was um choked, hit and, and his shirt was even ripped off. That happened!

DW: Hit and kicked. And his shirt was ripped. Was there a police report? 41:45 [inaudible conversation]--

BW: Add to that: When the incident happened, I was in the building. In fact I'm the one that separated Paul and the guy and pulled, the guy off of Paul. There's some assumption that whenever um somebody comes in that-- for some reason I didn't know them. This is just a volunteer. I don't know this person, I don't know where they live, I never met him, he stepped? outside; he's uh WBAI-- [voices-- point of order--]

DA: [unintelligible] We're not gonna be discussing, um incidents like this. There's gonna be-- we have grievance processes within the Foundation, there should be investigations of any claim, there's a way to deal with this. I do not find [conversation]

DW: Mr. Chairman. Mr. Chairman, I was trying to form a question 42:35 about a tone in the station. And I regret-- I think I did mention specifics but I think the response could be to the culture or tone at WBAI, and not to go to specific incidents.

DA: All right? Bernard we're sort of out of time on this question, if you could just quickly address [inaudible]--

BW: [Room noise] I agree with Indra. In that, that is not the tone. There have been some incidents, yes. When you-- we're in New York City you bring in a lot of people off the street-- you know that eh those kind of things happen. Unfortunate, but they do but I don't think that's the tone as such.

DA: Rosalinda? Then? Mary, Sandy. All-right. We're comin' all the way down the line, then [unintell.]--

Rosalinda Palacios? - KPFA (Staff): Yeah I just, um heard a coupla things too that were pretty disturbing. Umm in regards to the, uh this group of Latinos, Lengua Suerta? When you made the decision to bring the group in did you meet with the current Latino staff and the Interim ED and tell them? we're making this change?


I didn't meet with the ED but--

Unidentified Male: Did you meet with the GM?

BW: No I didn't meet with the GM. Uh it's not customary that we, we do that I mean it wasn't done umm, to slight the GM. But I met with the group of, current producers, and I asked them, I said here's the, some young folks. I'd like you to take them in and begin to work with them, on doing a program that is focusing on the issues that I had mentioned, what's? the developments in Latin, and Central America. And they agreed to do it. And then within a couple of days I received a letter saying that they wouldn't, they weren't going to do it, and that um-- The letter also suggested that I was taking away Latino programming, which is not the case at all.

DA: Um, Mary?

Mary Berg - KPFA (Staff): Uh yes my question was uh that Indra mentioned that she was not, told about new programming, programming changes, or special programming. And ah that she was told this was because she had limited radio experience. Ah, you as the PD would be the person to be speaking to her I presume and I'm wondering uh what this means.


Well, what I-- Indra and I have had discussions about programming and one of the things I said, that what we need to do is we need to sit down and talk about the 0:45:18 issue of programming. We need to discuss what is, what is good programming, how is the schedule formulated, why, why do we do certain things. Because, coming from uh her background as a bookkeeper I thought that she would be able to benefit from that. Also I would like to see her talk to other people about the issue of programming. Because we, you know we need to have an understanding of programming. Uh but the only time I've ever spoken to Indra about programming it was when she was telling me what it is that she liked, wanted to see in terms of programming. What I should do in terms of programming. And then again I told her I said Look we need to sit down and have that kind of discussion.

DA: Ah?--

Sandy Weinman? - KPFT (Staff):

I, I've heard a lot in the last few minutes and I'll try to be brief, but. Post-coup syndrome, email characterizations are just that. We're-- I mean? that's not the point here. It was said, escalating financial obligations. So dealing with finances you deal with expenses or revenues. I have a question for each of you. On the revenue side it's driven by programming. So I'd like to know what is the [inaudible] to get new programs on the air, at WBAI, if there is one. And, on the expense side, I'd like to know last year we made some staff cuts at WBAI [unintelligible]. Are there plans to look reevaluate the size of the staff, adjust that again to match the decline in revenue that's been taken? in your on-air fundraising. Thank you.

IH: Actually I am looking at that option again. It's unfair to cut more staff because we are already working with a skeleton crew. And, it's not staff fault that we are not meeting our goals, it's not staff fault that we are not uh getting new streams of revenue. But-- we will have to make some more cuts in the near future.

SW: How [unintelligible] constitute a staff [unintelligible]?

IH: We have uh 18 full time and, gee, I can't, I think it's equivalent to about 24, 25 full time.

SW: Thank you. On the program side?


Uh, one of the reasons why I talked about the emails is because I think that those emails have an impact on our ability to raise revenue. Because they uh go out by the thousands, uh to our listenership. And as you receive these things over time you begin to question why you should.

[Unintelligible] process by which programs become, the programming process-- Well it comes by a variety of different ways. We have uh a Program Council, that uh that meets to discuss programming. We have a pilot project where we bring programming in. We give them an opportunity to be on the air so that we can hear what they sound like and begin to evaluate whether or not they should stay. And um we also have program-- I have Program Director's meeting. We've been, we're having them a bit more frequently than we've had them in the past. Uh we're, where suggestions come up for different programs. And uh, that's how we do it. Plus we take a look at some of the literature that's out about what is doing well in other places.

SW: Thank you.

BW: You're welcome.

Lavarn Williams - KPFA (Listener): Yes thank you. I'd like like to thank both Indra 49:15 and Bernard for being here talking, and certainly appreciate Indra's insight [unintelligible] business manager and the Finance Committee. She's been a very strong person here. And I know over the years she's former GDM? I know she's moved? in, faithfully? held. I understand one of the things [unintell.] in a period of time. So I certainly would like to thank the Board member in here? for the hard work [unintell.] to help support? things that are here.

The question-- I had questions but, Rosalinda asked that question. Covered. But um [unintell.] programming the point that Indra had made and the point that you made Bernard about Indra not being [untelligible] in the programming. So my question is about, the number of days of fund drives is, the days have increased to about 90 projected about 90 [unintell.]. But I want to know, what are you doing in terms of program in terms of reducing the number of days spent? on the air, and that, and how to protect both the staff and the listeners from, in the [unintell.]?

BW: Okay. This is a two pronged attack that we have. One is that I have been struggling to try and reshape the way we do our fundraisers. Uh there is some sentiment among the staff, among the department heads, that what we need to do is let each of the producers stay in their own time slots and work, do the fundraising that way. Which means they come on for an hour. By the time they really develop some momentum that hour is over, and we go on to the next program.

My position is that since we are premium-driven, that what we need to do is begin to allocate time to really address ah deal with some of the premiums that we have. For instance, there should be no program that's less than 2 hours. Because it takes that amount of time in New York City to develop the momentum which really brings in a lot of the revenue. And I think that, umm, now, I think that many of the department heads see that that is the best way. In fact many of the producers who did one hour programs this time and came in with a lot smaller figure are interested in not doing that again-- and do-- thinking that a longer, you know having a longer opportunity on the air.

Secondly, we have developed a, we are developing a premium protocol. I've written a draft for a premiums protocol. We've had a meeting already. Which means we'll be able to reduce the amount of premiums, we'll be able to target in on specific premiums, and I think that we'll be able to generate a lot more money, not by bringing in a whole bunch of premiums, but identifying those which render the greatest amount of revenue and using them more frequently.

LW: So do you have targets in terms of the next fund drive? [unintelligible] 26 days [unintelligible] the last fund drive? You have a target--

BW: We haven't discussed that yet but I think that's an excellent idea.

DA: Acie?

Acie Byrd - WPFW (Listener):

Yah I just wanted sorta to reverse the kind of inquiry that's going on. I think that uh I've heard reports about each of our network, each of our stations having multiple set of problems one way or the other, with both their LSB members as well as-- we have the same thing at WPFW. We have people who ah approach the issue, any issue that we have they approach it by email [inaudible]. And I think that we as directors we had it explained to us in January at the Board meeting by Marshall that we have to care for this network.

So it appears to me that ah, what I'd like to hear from both of you is What kind of activities that you have that you think you can, bring about an improvement in the situation. What is the, what is the work that can be done that overall will deal with some of the problems, and what can the Board do to [inaudible] offset particularly the slander that goes on around the stations and the failure to have a constructive dialog as I think Greg has pointed out. Not just at BAI but that's a question in every station we [unintelligible] to look at. Because it appears to me that uh, I just have some negative thoughts about people who persist in disruption all the time. That persist in slander and persist in these things. This is an attack on the network. It's been around for 50-some years.

And it appears to me that we have an obligation given the right-wing onslaught that we have in this country led by the Bush administration and other right-wing forces, that-- We are operating not in a vacuum-- caught, in the middle of, of a very serious situation that's threatening our liberties in the United States, and it seems to me that Pacifica has a special role there. So my question would be "How do we address some of those kind of situations? And, and how do we help fashion a working Pacifica to make it an effective instrument for social change?


I suspect that we are a little bit different from the other stations. In terms of our audience. And I feel that we've basically marginalized most of our arts and music shows. And that's one 0:55:08 of the reasons why we are not meeting our goals. Because our sister stations are offering 50-50 arts and culture and public affairs, whereas ours, we are doing 85% public affairs and just about 15% arts and music. And those slots we do the music it's like, from midnight to four in the morning where, no one is listening or it's on, Sunday. So I feel that we need as our EE? said, some arts and music to heal some of the, money, money problem, and that's what I would think that [unintelligible] at WBAI. Again it goes back to structuring of some programs.


Well I would say just look at WBAI's program schedule to see what is [inaudible] where those programs are located. Ah, secondly I think that yesterday was the beginning. I think that one of the things that this Board-- ah, I've looked at the program that you did yesterday on race, I think that that was really important. I think out of that has to come some institutionwide activities to begin to sensitize everybody to some of the excesses that we're all subject to. So I think that as you continue to move forward it will have a trickle-down effect locally. I think what we have to begin to do is have more meetings where we have frank, open, and honest discussions about what's going on and where we want to take the radio station into this next century.

DA: That's great. I want to ask the Board something. There have been a number of people since we started around? who have now told me they have just one quick thing. I personally think this is a very productive discussion. Um I asked the Affiliates Coordinator and our tech person so that they would consider giving their reports tomorrow. Eva?'s offered to reduce by 15 minutes. I'd like to suggest to the Board that we start our executive session tomorrow not at 9 but at 8, spend an hour and a half in executive session-- [unintelligible] it's either that or be here till 10 and I'm, personally tired. I don't know about the rest of you. That's the alternative to go late but we have an event tonight. Tomorrow is a much shorter agenda. We've been at this, we will have been at this over 12 hours by the end of the day. So I want to suggest that we meet [unintelligible] at 8 a.m. for an executive session that would last an hour and a half, come back and have the tech and the affiliates at that time and then continue with our agenda for that day, continue with this for about another 15 minutes, and Eva has agreed to foreshorten her presentation 15 minutes, which would get us done in the appropriate amount of time and give us that added [unintelligible]. My concern is that we would come in at 9 and I still think that the number of things that we're gonna have in executive session may cause us to spill over. Then? we're running behind all day we've already put a number of things into unfinished business and new business tomorrow. So we have to bite the bullet somewhere. Would the Board accept being here at 8 a.m. tomorrow and following this schedule?

A voice: Yes.

DA: Thank you very much for your forbearance. Uh, okay with that, we're [unintelligible] around. Did you have something Alan?

Alan Minsky, KPFK (Staff): [Inaudible - all through this the conversation has been inaudible] All I'll say is, again thank you for, threshing it out. Just hopefully this uncharacteristic format would hopefully begin to say? all this from having all of us here--

DA: And this won't be an uncharacteristic format. We're gonna do this at every meeting, we're gonna rotate the focus so we really get into things, so we don't have to deal with this with a torrent of emails when we get home, not having [inaudible]. We're gonna go to Sarv and then Lydia then Kim 0:59:15 and [inaudible] we're going to finish with the remaining [inaudible].

Sarv Randhawa - KPFA (Listener): Well, there's a couple of things. First of all I appreciate your coming here, Indra and Bernard. Well what stands out in my mind is that somebody said that on the Latino program you were not consulted and that somehow you said that you hadn't participated in it. Um-- what caused this? Do you know what is underlying this in your opinion? What is it? If you have not reduced any programs hours and you are adding you said half hour into a four hour segment?

BW: No it's an hour.

SR: An hour out of four hour segment?

BW: Right.

SR: Ah and also did you, is it customary for the Program Director when they make decisions like that that it has to go through this General Ma-- IGM or, you know in the past has that been the tradition or custom?

BW: Not at WBAI it's not been a tradition-- However, we do have discussions about-- but there's no formal process, that it has to go through the ED ah at BAI. But we've, we're supposed to be having ongoing discussions but this is not a program that was placed, you know-- what happens is when you get a program you are notified that this is your program, this is your end? time, this is what's expected-- that's not, we hadn't reached that stage yet.

SR: Ah also, Indra you said that you think that all these things are happening to you because you are, you are a woman. Lot of things are happening to you because a woman.

IH: Yeah.

SR: What, what leads you to that conclusion?

IH: Because every time I've had to subject? of changes, preemption, special programming, I'm being, verbally abused.

SR: And you think it's because--

IH: I think it-- yeah--

SR: And you told them, that, not to do that? You're the General Manager--

IH: We tried to have dialog.

BW: I have a question--

SR: Listen! It's my turn. [sounds louder, more on-mike] What I'm amazed at is that our Executive Director here, he spoke here for 20-30 minutes. And he did an outstanding job in trying to articulate the mission of this network. It is not primarily about one item or another. It's not about public affairs. It's not about music alone. It's not about uh drama, literature, or anything like that. It's the totality of all the elements that go into making a person human. Now, is that mission that each one of the stations, when they have full appreciation of that mission, just in their programs to make sure that that happens, and, Bernard I would like your opinion on it.

BW: About producing our programs [inaudible]--

SR: That all elements that are captured in the mission of the network as articulated very eloquently by our Executive Director here: That it's not only about public affairs, it's about music, art, literature, all of the combined elements that go into fulfilling the Pacifica mission.

BW: All of the programs that-- well you know as Program Director you always inherit the results of other program directors' efforts. All of these programs that I have been directly involved with pretty well have been in compliance with our mission.

SR: Catching? the totality of it? Have you been putting all the programs-- strictly public affairs, because that's what I heard. I heard that most of the programs on WBAI are public affair type.

BW: Well yeah, that's historically been the case. Most of our programs have been public affairs. We have had a reduction in music programming. And I have been talking to the Arts Director for the longest about trying to bring in some arts programming that would increase the-- that would be worthy of being put on the air on a regular basis. We live in what might be the arts capitol of the world, and I've been saying for the longest-- 'cause I don't-- I just don't have the time to do it. But we need to be going out, and talking to many of the arts community to see if we can encourage them to come in and partner with us in doing programs on WBAI.

SR: Thank you.

DA: Lydia?

Lydia Brazon - KPFK (Listener): Yes, just if you can clarify [unintelligible]-- as you know, we've heard it all. In terms of the Spanish programming or the Latino programming, when you have added shows, how many have been taken off? Or, does that happen-- What is your net total of additions both in the number of programs as well as in hours of programming?

BW: There was one program that was taken off, and all the rest-- ah, that I've talked about have been added. Okay let me see we have uh, the net gain should be at least three. Each program is at least an hour in length, three hours.

DA?: Um, Weford?

Unknown Male: Thank you. I suppose this question is primarily for Bernard White. If Indra has another take on it I'd be interested in her response too. Democracy Now is produced in New York, at 6 a.m. I believe it's, a live broadcast, correct?

BW: No-- at 9 o'clock [unintelligible] at 10.

Unknown Male: Why is it available at 9 and KPFT at seven [inaudible.] No I'm not asking what time you broadcast it, I'm asking what time is it available.

BW?: Eight o'clock [conversation]

DA?: Seven-- 1:05:53. [conversation]

Unknown Male: Okay, eight o'clock-- eight o'clock is still drive time. I've never been able to understand why-- it's produced, so that it could be broadcast at drive time but it's not broadcast until 9 o'clock when I think most people at work. And I just wondered what that-- and I know that at one time that was mandated and now that it's no longer mandated I wondered why it's still being broadcast, at an hour delay?

BW: Well first of all they make it available at an hour delay so-- people don't all use it at the same time. And we have a program called Radio Calls that goes on in the morning that does well for us, and our signal-- and our signal, not our signal but the amount of people that are listening aah starts at 6 in the morning and at most radio stations it drops off at 9 o'clock. For us it continues to go up at 9 o'clock, and then it doesn't drop off until around 10 o'clock--

Unknown Male: I suggest that that might be because Democracy Now! is at 9 o'clock, but I think if you put it on at 8 just as an experiment you might find over time that-- I'm just suggesting there is a possibility that, it would start peaking around 8 o'clock [two speaking at once]--

BW: It's a gradual peak, it gradually goes up for that entire time.

Unknown Male: I see. You have another take on it [unintelligible]?

IH: I would actually like it at 8, 'cause I think we'll benefit, really benefit more as far as revenue goes. [conversation]

DA: I'm gonna, finish with the New York directors but before I do I have a couple things I'd like to say. One's just a quick technical thing which is, I think one of the things that's hurting all our stations is our format of public affairs is all those guests, those guests [applause-- inaudible] no matter what the show is, what the topic is. And that's because additional production work is a ton of work. And when we move to more frequent shows you we just don't have the money in our budget to pay people to do the kind of production that you need. So to my mind what you need to do is radically increase the number of people participating so you can get the level-- and that's on the volunteer side-- so you can get the level of production. But that's like this gradual process of growing that, even that whole ecology up in a place that got clearcut by our coup. You know we used to, here in LA we just used to have a lot more people that could be involved in production.

So, one question is just a quick question about any strategies you have for improving the level of production values in programming, recognize them if you can't afford to pay you know producers with full time jobs to do that. That's one. I'll answer my own question partly by saying those computers need to get out to places in the community where people who are excited about producing need to, get goin' with it and I hope you can support that as PD.

The other thing is just one about gettin' along. You know I get the feeling there are a lot of people in New York who are really intensely supportive of you, who mobilize to defend you against what they feel are challenges to your role as Program Director. And I personally don't, know the situation in New York and I know enough about Pacifica not to take what I hear from any side as the truth. But I don't see Indra as a person who is you know a representative of a faction. And I just, I would be willing to guess that some of the heat she takes is people who sense a challenge to you, who are angry at her about that. I could be wrong and you guys can correct me.

But, you're getting along and having some open communication is to my mind right now the only key to deescalating the fight in New York. So I'd like to hear from each of you what you're gonna do in the next couple of months for the benefit of the station and network and deescalate this war, that I keep hearing, getting flack from.

BW: You know, what I think happens and it's unfortunate is that you know at Pacifica when we discuss radio we all have our views about radio. Sometimes we can be quite passionate about it. You can't take that passion as a, you can't take if someone disagrees with you as an attack. We all have our points of view. We need to be able to express them. Umm, you know I'm not attacking, ah that's not my style I don't do that--

DA: [inaudible] You guys don't have, my impression is you guys do not have a strong enough working relationship, ah, and what I'd like to know is what steps could be taken to make that relationship work in a way-- because when that starts to work better than it's working now, that's gonna tone down at least some of the conflict. That's what I want to see happen. I don't know what the rest of the Board wants. We can't mandate you to do it. We can't order you to do it. But I'd like to hear what steps could be taken in the next quarter, so that by the time we meet in your fair city, ah things will be at a somewhat different tenor, and not this fever pitch that we keep getting. Indra do you want to comment on it?

IH: Yes uh I, beg to disagree about programming that because I do not have a show on the air a significant show and be on the air, I don't know radio-- I, think that's a fallacy. Managing our resources is what I'm good at. And, the airwave is our resources. The radio programs are our resource. And we have to manage them in a way where we can maximize revenue. And in order to do that-- last time I checked with my job description it says my job is to oversee the entire station. 1:11:19

I was told the other day by a Board member that my job is to just organize personnel [laughter] and personnel issues. I don't have any business in the radio, department. And-- actually right now a movement is being organized to take away from my job description to manage the program director. So, they're trying now to change my job description. So, you know this is what I have to deal with. Ah, no inclusion in programming. My job description says [sudden change in volume] I do have control and I think all the other managers will say that, the iGM or GM has control over managing the resources and I don't have that ability yet [both talking]. I'm working toward that.

DA: I appreciate [unintelligible] but to me that confirms there's a revolt between you, and my question was what's gonna be done in the next quarter to bridge the gulf between you--

IH: For it to work we'd really have to have a united front--

BW: I think we have to do what I've suggested to Indira on several occasions, is we need to sit down and talk.

IH: But you walk away every time we [unintelligible] talk, you walk away and you, you, you exercise the pattern you talk about.

BW: I walk away at the point that we both wind up repeating over and over our same positions. At that point it really [unintelligible], there's no exchange--

DA: Would you each be willing to engage in some mediation, would some mediation be--

IH: Absolutely.

DA: agreeable to you?

IH: Absolutely.

BW: No question.

DA: Okay. Thank you very much. We're gonna finish with the New York directors. Patty?

Patty Heffley - WBAI (Listener): Thank you. Well ah 01:13:44 a coupla things. What my understanding was is that the new program sits on top of the two Latino programs already in place. I think there's uh-- on Sunday there is right now a four hour block and it's, kind of shared by, basically three programs and you're putting a fourth one on top of it.

Um, as far as the women's thing I'm a little troubled because women's programming is two hours a month and the largest minority for disabled people is one hour a month. So, I think real diversity at the station is, we really need to examine that. I really don't, um you know I think there's a problem. Uh as to um, I believe Indra is a business manager, not a bookkeeper. So that really bothered me. And also programming is really all we have, and so um, I tried to hand you a form Bernard about our fundraising days and you wouldn't take it from me. But, we're really in trouble here when we're raising funds one day out of every four. And we have not had a successful fund drive for a while.

So I'm just wondering do you have any-- what's the plan here for the financial situation here? And to blame one person while I do not agree with the-- I also denounce the language in the document that was passed around. I do denounce it but that amount of people receiving an email even on a regular basis cannot account for 92 days of fundraising. So I'm wondering if there-- um, you know is there any ability for any self 01:15:46 critique here as to why we're not doing so well with the programming? Because I haven't heard-- self-critique and I think we all have to do that, if we're gonna move forward.

BW: I can agree with that. But I think you know as I said in the very beginning, that we have to put this in the proper context. Our bills have gone up almost geometrically. We're paying $650,000 a year for rent. That's ridiculous! We should not be paying that amount of money. There were times when our fund drives were, when we would do a May fund drive and it would be 300,000 dollars, 350,000 dollars. Now each time we go out for a fund drive, it's a million dollars.

There are-- one of the things I'm trying to do, we're working on doing is to-- in terms of customer service. One of the reasons why we have had some problems is that we have not been delivering our premiums to people in a timely manner. We have to turn that around. If people don't get their premiums they don't want to re up, they don't want to [unintelligible] become a, stay a member of, the radio station.

As I've said, or would have said if I could have read the rest of my report, that we are trying to tighten up our approach to the laying out the fund drives so that we maximize the amount of time that we're on. We generally start out at the end of a week of having all of the producers come on for a one hour program 01:17:32, we start out the next week at a deficit. I believe that if we restructure how we approach it and how we execute it, that we can begin to stay apace of what our weekly goal is.

In addition to that, hey I'm not perfect! You know I never claim to be perfect. I'm learning, I'm doing things. You also can only work with what you have. You have to make adjustments with what you have to work with. And I'm, you know so I'm doing that too. But I don't claim to be perfect, I don't claim to have all the answers. We have a staff and we, collectively try and come up with a, with how we work.

01:18:16 to 01:22:37: Ray Laforest - WBAI (Listener): [A great deal of this is over-four-minute speech is inaudible and/or unintelligible. I cannot post it at this time, but we are making efforts to fill in some of the blanks-- Transcriptionist.]

BW: I think you covered it all with that. There's a whole culture and I think it's endemic, in Pacifica. That people after they've been on the air for a while think their time belongs to them. And that nobody can take it away from them. For whatever reason. And that is a problem. And what happens at WBAI is they form coalitions, they are involved in community, they use the airwaves to organize to protect their time slot.

DA: Okay ah Bob-- Patty you've already gone, right? Then Bob it's you and then we're moving on [inaudible].

Bob Lederer - WBAI (Staff): Okay uh, two, two questions. One is ah I believe that Indra's comment about what she described as an effort to change her job description was a reference to a discussion that happened last week in the General Manager Search Subcommittee which is the body that's charged by the LSB to be in the search for a new, a permanent general manager. It's not a committee that's, that reviews the current Interim General Manager's work. And that discussion was looking at the past job description that uses the phrase "establish programming goals" and starting to explore and not having made decisions my understanding is, simply whether that should be broadened to say something about working collaboratively with the program director to establish goals. To make it clear what I believe-- and I wanted to ask Bernard this-- has been the traditional relationship between the GM and the PD in terms of establishing progamming goals. How has that been, you know over the years as you understand it?

01:24:22 BW: Traditionally, it has been one where the PD and the station manager sits down and has discussions about what it is that they want to accomplish. After those discussions the station manager would then discuss it with the local board, and the PD would then begin to discuss it with the staff and make attempts to implement it. Because at that point-- [unintelligible] the board was primarily advisory, so they didn't have the kind of latitude that the present board has.

BL: Um now to turn to the second question to Indra, um my colleage in the Premiums Department made a very serious allegation, a very troubling allegation about um 01:25:12, not only the attack on him, which I'd known about many months ago but that this individual came into the station again, which is indeed quite disturbing. And um I've been told that our LSB Chair intends to call an executive session to deal with that and the general situation.

So my question to Indra is, I believe it was last June our LSB had a serious discussion of all the allegations swirling and clear evidence that there have been misconduct by certain staff members and abusive behavior. And so we were looking for a systemic approach to this. And uh what we asked was to call on you as Interim General Manager to compile a report, on your assesssment of the situation in terms of unsafe working environment and the steps that could be taken to improve that and provide protection and safeguards. And I wondered when do you think you might be able to uh, provide that report to the LSB?

IH: Well Last June I had just started. I do not, I don't even recall that request. But ah I have taken actions to reduce the amount of violence at the station, and also we had a mediation session with two other issues that were going on at that time. But I don't know if [inaudible], I don't recall. [inaudible conversation]

BL: Okay--

IH: But I would certainly try to do a report on what actions have been taken so far. And what are the protocols for ah, that kind of [inaudible].

DA: I believe Ambrose has a motion.

Ambrose Lane - WPFW (Staff): Mr. Chair, throughout this day we've heard a number of allegations that, put this Foundation at legal risk. So I'm moving that this board direct the ED 01:27:10 to do an assessment of what happened at WBAI in terms of abuse and intimidation, and report back to this Board officially in executive session. It's awfully important, that we do this, [unintelligible] we're in serious legal jeopardy. These allegations [inaudible].

DA: Could you also add to that that we heard discussions of other issues of mismanagement? Can we include those as well?

AL: I don't want to confuse the two.

DA: Okay. So, awright--

Woman: Second!

DA: There's a second. Can we, go straight to a vote, on this? Greg if you want to hear this [unintelligible] the Board to direct you to do something [laughter].

AL: The PNB hereby directs the [unintelligible] deal with allegations we've heard today regarding abuse and intimidation at WBAI and report back to the PNB in executive session at some--

DA: Later meeting--

AL: Later meeting--

Male voice: Okay. No deadline though at this point [conversation - laughter]--

DA: All in-- since we don't have any further time I'm just gonna bring this to a vote. All those in favor please raise your hand. [pause]

DA: Is that No? Any No's?

Female voice: It was unanimous.

DA: Yes [inaudible]?

Unknown male: Very quickly. During the course of this exchange both the General Manager and the PD agreed to mediation.

Male voice: Thank you [loud conversation].

Unknown male: Ya, and I'm just wondering, without going to a motion, inasmuch as both agreed immediately to mediation that we just be aware of that and we also, informally at this moment, explain you know to the Executive Director that they have agreed to mediation and that has to be arranged.

DA: Great. Thank you very much. Aright so next we have Eva for 15 minutes. We also have time in tomorrow's agenda. Is Eva in the room? [laughter - conversation]-- END of Part 7 01:29:54.

[Approximately 11,015 Words.]