The opportunists at WBAI still live in their dream world, dteadfastly refusing to acknowledge that it was they, and not Sandy or those damned listener-supporters who killed the station. Some of them still believe that it will all come back—but it won't. The real WBAI hasn't been at 99.5 in many years, and
would have been totally forgotten were it not for the few hones, devoted producer/hosts who held out. Let's hope that they get back on somebody's air. As for the abusers and narcissists, their disappearance is the only good thing to come out of this.
Here is what Mitchel Cohen had to say:
a) Does away with the bylaws and listener-and-staff governance of Pacifica;
b) Agrees to put in a few million dollars in the form of guaranteeing ongoing payments to cover WBAI's expenses;
c) Agrees to return WBAI to Pacifica in five years (we'll see how that works out in reality!);
d) Does not answer to anyone;
e) Has private access to all of WBAI's database and website for any purpose;
and a lot more that I'd be speculating about without actual knowledge, but which is pro forma for these matters.
Those measures would include (and all of these have been proposed repeatedly by members from all factions, but never implemented):
7) Re-Negotiating WBAI's and Pacifica's current debts (as is done by all for-profit corporations);
8) Re-conceptualizing and expanding WBAI's media footprint and revenue via the internet, and parallel radio stations on WBAI's website;
9) Accrue revenue from WBAI's current leasing of its secondary carrier signals (today all revenue accrues directly to Pacifica and is not applied to WBAI's payments to Pacifica);
Those bullet-points should be part of a comprehensive plan. But the construction of such has apparently eluded WBAI's management for a decade, past as well as current management.
Any competent management at Pacifica and WBAI would have ensured that such a recovery plan be written, circulated, implemented, and monitored -- and it should have been doneyesterday. WBAI's membership should have been sent (two years ago, at least) management's comprehensive plan, which would include all of those items. And management should have provided regular updates on mobilizing the listeners and staff to achieve implementation of such a plan.
Any competent organizer knows that management must do all of the things (and more) listed above -- anyone knows this except, apparently, WBAI's management, which has neverproduced such a plan, let alone submitted it for review to the Local Station Board. Why is it that the National office cannot properly supervise the management that it has appointed to ensure these basic things are done, and done properly?
I strongly oppose the proposed RFP (Request for Proposals) for Public Service Operating Agreements for WBAI-FM (99.5 FM - NY), leasing arrangements, orany deal that privatizes WBAI and its management -- even for a relatively short period. I urge WBAI's directors to the Pacifica National Board and all others to do the same.
former Chair, WBAI Local Station Board (2008-2012), and
current Secretary, WBAI Local Board
TO WHICH STEVE BROWN RESPONDED: