Monday, September 17, 2018

Mining at KPFA

A few points of information from the KPFA LSB Meeting of September 15, 2018 which may be of some general interest:

Tom Livingston, iED terms out 30 September.

Sunday, 16 September, there may or may not be an announcement of a new permanent Executive Director.

The selection process had winnowed the number of total applicants, twenty-two, to three. The candidate who was considered most qualified then withdrew after listening to a few Pacifica Board Meetings, leaving two candidates remaining.

There may or may not be an announcement of the winning candidate in part because many board members have voted for ‘no candidate’.

At least one stated opinion was that neither of the remaining candidates is qualified.

There was then a wrangle over past choices re the possibility of bankruptcy.

A motion was presented to reduce the number of PNB directors and to have them apportioned proportionate to listenership.

Incidental to the above discussion the following membership numbers were mentioned…

After some further acrimony as to the past bankruptcy question the motion advocating the bylaws amendment was passed.

All looks wonderful in PacificaLand, yes?

~ ‘indigopirate’

Friday, September 14, 2018

Lone KPFT Stirs?

This is an excerpt from the archived audio of the KPFT LSB Meeting of 12 September. It was snipped free from the overall meeting audio, but is unedited other than having thrown some compression at it to try and improve the audio quality, which is pretty bad.

This section is Q&A with KPFT’s members of the Pacifica National Board. There are the inevitable disagreements and variant perspectives, but I think a couple of salient points, of general interest, not merely for KPFT but for Pacifica, ring through fairly clear:

Pacifica has long had no fiscal standards. The $3m+ loan was meant to buy time to address that, but that isn’t happening.

NETA, the outside accounting firm which has been brought in, is being balked at every turn, by every unit, with its attempts to get actual financials. Units simply refuse to cooperate.

There are no plans to repay the loan, nor to repay the monies necessary to bring the unpaid pension liabilities into compliance.

The most recent audit included twenty-five pages of details as to Pacifica’s  improper financial practices – none of these have been discussed, nor have there been any attempts to address them.

The point that most sharply struck the Pirate was, ‘What they’ve mostly been talking about is quality of programming… as if… that’s why we’re losing listenership….’

I think that speaks to the point all too clearly.

~ ‘indigopirate’

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Wind up time...

Pacifica National Board, Finance Committee
11 September 2018

The Finance Committee met, as per custom, approximately half an hour behind schedule, having reached quorum minimum of six members present.

The first item was a report from Anita Sims, of NETA.

At this point NETA has visited every station, and the National Office. While NETA appears to be active, diligent, and competent, they have had no ability to access the information necessary to do their work. Stations haven’t actually entered their information into Great Plains for two years or so. Stations and the National Office simply haven’t provided them the necessary financial information despite constantly constantly repeated requests for the necessary information. Critically, they have no access to Great Plains, for which they have requested access since first taking on the job of attempting to put Pacifica’s financial house in order. For whatever reasons, the National Office simply hasn’t granted them access. They’re in the dark, flying blind.

As is, of course, Pacifica, at both the unit and the national levels.

From the Q&A and discussion that followed it’s once again crystal clear that Pacifica is without organization, without lines of authority, and fails completely to communicate within itself.

NETA, clearly, will do what it can, but it desperately needs some degree of cooperation from Pacifica in order to do that.

The committees response was to draft and approve a motion.

As for the next item on the agenda, budget preparation, there is very nearly no progress. KPFK appears to have some preliminary draft budgets, which means it’s far further along than anyone else.

WBAI, for example, with its fund raising collapsing further than ever, hasn’t bothered to have the General Manager address the issues, as he prefers to take the day off, it seems, rather than attempt to do so.

There is no question, budget or not, that WBAI is looking at deficits.

The one positive note this pirate heard in the course of the meeting was from KPFK. The newly permanent GM, who has a showbiz background, appears to have made some real progress in taking things in hand, thus improving morale, has purchased Nielsen’s which will be used to shape the programming grid, and is reported to be determined to move KPFK on from the 1960’s and into the current century.

On the whole, however, Pacifica is clearly as abysmally chronically dysfunctional as ever.

It may prove amusing to see what the forthcoming General Manager attempts.

Or not.                                  ~ ‘indigopirate’

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Finger in the wind approach...

Words by the PNB members at their September 10, 2018 Strategy Committee telephonic meeting. Observations by Indigopirate (pro tem), who cranked up a discarded Victrola and pointed it west.

As ever, Pacifica drifts, at times in overt acrimony, at times in ‘discussions’ that lead nowhere. As ever, its listenership drifts in turn, ever lower, as indebtedness grows, unaddressed other than in passing reference, occasional entreaty, action never taken.

This evening, the PNB Strategic Planning Committee, the unvarying pattern:

The Finance Working Group, hasn’t met.

Nor has the Programming Working Group.

Nor has the Governance/Mission Working Group.

Tell you what, let’s have a discussion. How about discussing… Underwriting?

It might raise some money.

Yes, but it would support Capitalism, and we’re Anti-Capitalism.

It would be a slippery slope.

But it might reduce or replace the health scams, etc.

Yes, but who would decide what’s acceptable, or not?

Yes, but on the other hand…?

Get the idea?

Nothing happens. Hasn’t for decades, why start now?

Of course listenership continues to decline…

How about a Survey!?

The Indigo Pirate’s Summary:

‘What, you want to Do Something?’

Never happen.

Never say Never?

It’s okay. In this case, you can safely say Never.

~ ‘Indigo, Pirate Pro Tem’

Friday, September 7, 2018

Nocturnal Jumble Jam

Thursday night's "Special Meeting" of the PNB featured a lengthy, appropriately inaudible opening act by Pacifica's very own Marceau mime, an entity who is getting increased attention on WBAI and now seems to have traipsed into the stream.

In the meantime—not to be discounted as an earwitness—our trusty fly on the wall, Indigo, was ready to suck in the sounds that eventually surfaced. A kind soul, he also felt a need to share it all under a brief perceptive predictive preamble.

The entire meeting is linked to below. It speaks for itself, though not eloquently, leaving hope that a follow-up will be dedicated to speak for it. In the background, the green screen shows something red and, perhaps, unread, a Modigliani of unpaid bills and unfulfilled obligations—it's an obscured real life of a future growing increasingly dim. This "Special" telephonic jam session begs for explanation.

Indigopirate's observation gets right to the point... if there was one:

If you’ve followed this decades-long-running ugliness, you know all this all too well.

Livingston put them in a position where it would be possible, if they could, if Pacifica could, learn evolve develop evolve… grow.

It won’t happen.

Pacifica’s people don’t change. Pacifica doesn’t change. It remains in a drifting-through-time state of eternal leftist fractiousness, having abandoned its original foundational mission many decades ago.

These are talentless people no one capable is willing to work with.

Oh, by the way, not a word as of yet of any competent permanent Executive Director.

Perhaps they’re holding the matter in special secret session.

Perhaps they’re deadlocked.

Perhaps they have someone as yet undisclosed.

It doesn’t matter.

It won’t matter.

The present course leads to nowhere until they’ve run through their remaining assets and face the reapers and then in turn the knackers.

The only fate to which they’re truly dedicated.

Sad, ain’t it?

Time to move on…

Special PNB Meeting, Act 1
Special PNB Meeting, Act 2
Special PNB Meeting, Act 3

Unbeknownst to us, there was another astute observer listening in, Jara Handala. Here is what he had to say:

Last nite's marathon PNB railroaded thru a pensions trustee cttee. (Chair Nancy refusing an amendment that would have offered an alternative person to the three put forward by the gatekeepers); Humble DeWayne called iED Major Tom a racist; &, oh yes, Nancy put Point-of-order-madam-chair Adriana in the virtual straight-jacket, a.k.a. zapped by the mute button on the masterboard. Whether Adriana cried no-one could tell, but she seemed somewhat subdued when Nancy let First Secretary Koba ask her how she was voting.

And to add spice to the proceedings, Self-effacing DeWayne seemed to be trying to remind Chair Nancy that the Texas Democrats wanted director Bill Crosier sent into Pacifica exile, barred from the meeting. If only this energy were directed towards constructive goals. But then those like DeWayne would be flying planes all the time.      —Jara Handala