Thursday, July 16, 2015

Bozo Berthold's juggling act

If you are still buying overpriced premiums or otherwise donating your money to WBAI, this audio moment from the July 14, 2015 Pacifica Finance Committee meeting should be of special interest to you. 

It is the complete, unexpurgated WBAI financial report delivered this week to Pacifica by the station's baffled Treasurer, R. Paul Martin. You will note that Mr. Martin is kept as much in the dark by GM Berthold Reimers as is everybody else, but—notwithstanding repeated attempts at coverups by such apologists as cronies Frank Lefever and Mitchel Cohen—Reimers' utter ineptitude comes as no surprise. Apropos Lefever, he didn't waste any time kissing ass as he intruded himself upon Mr. Proffitt at 388 Atlantic Ave. today. 

It does not require keen perception to see Reimers' behavior as that of a misplaced dilettante with much to hide (including himself). More puzzling is the fact that Pacifica either condoned or ignored the systematic dumbing down and violation of its most consequentially located radio station.

As this is posted, Pacifica's newly hired iED, John Proffitt, is in New York City for a brief visit, more aptly described as a reconnaissance. We are told that he is a man with solid experience in the broadcast management field, and that seems to be borne out by his observations thus far. If he does not immediately fire Berthold Reimers, our early impression of Mr. Proffitt will have to be reassessed.

In the previous post, you heard an excerpt from Martin's report, but here it is in its entirety. Listen and you will understand why some of us have so readily predicted the end of WBAI. You will also become curious as to what happened to the funds recently raised to build a new studio, the one that, according to Mitchel Cohen, is under construction. You might also wonder what advice was purchased for the thousands of dollars allegedly spent on "consultation fees," and why the "deal" Reimers supposedly made with the Empire State Building not only remains a secret but also cannot be discussed in open session.


  1. The numbers, to the very limited extent they’re publicly available, are daunting.

    So much information, so much of Pacifica, is anything but open, claims to the contrary notwithstanding.

    So much of any substance is restricted to Executive Session.

    In a very real sense it’s as if Pacifica were a privately held corporation.

    As for the present situation there’s little we know with any meaningful confidence.

    We know, I think, with some confidence, that KPFK, WPFW, and WBAI are financially untenable as presently constituted – without radical reform they have literally no chance of survival, and are likely to pull the network down with them.

    What options do Proffitt and Pacifica have?

    We have no idea.

    We can all come up with hypotheticals, but we simply don’t have enough meaningful information to make any meaningful assessment.

    Incidentally, I may be wrong, but I think John Proffitt’s title is ED, not iED.

    ~ ‘indigopirate’

    1. I agree. All this uncertainty, all the conflicting stories that make it nigh impossible to make reasoned predictions as to details, still leave one given: the final curtain has begun its descent.

      I thought the rules called for a period of i before E.

      Did you notice that, true to form, Frank Lefever has wasted no time seeking intimacy with Proffitt. I find Lefever to be a shameless opportunist.

    2. Again, I may be wrong, but I believe it’s: ‘I before E except after C, unless insisted upon by quarreling purblind fools who never can C, or sounded as A as in neighbor or weigh, except February which has 28 and in leap years 29’ – that’s what we were taught, anyway.

      Frank LeFever? – Who’s Frank LeFever?

      ~ ‘indigo’

  2. Mitch got frank le fever, "I"'s got frank le fever
    We've got frank le fever, they're in love
    Frank's gone black-boy crazy, I's gone white-girl hater
    Ain't no thinking maybe, we're in debt
    Mitch's got frank le fever, I's got frank le fever
    We've got frank le fever, we're in love
    I's gone white-girl hatey, he's gone Berthold crazy
    We're each other's baby, we're in the red

    I's got frank le fever, Mitch's got frank le fever
    Bert's got frank le fever, they're in love
    He's gone berthold crazy, I's gone white-girl hatey
    Ain't no thinking maybe, we're in solvent

    Bert can't love Le, he can't love Frank
    Cause they say we're the wrong color
    Ducking, hiding, laughing, looking
    Like we've done something "wrong"
    Because we show love strong, get real, come on
    Calling us names too bad to mention
    But we pay them no attention
    For color blind are inner feelings
    If we feel happiness
    And know the pay's the best, forget the mess

    I's got frank le fever, Mitch's got frank le fever
    Bert's got frank le fever, they're in love
    He's gone black-boy crazy, I's gone white-boy hatey
    Ain't no thinking maybe, Frank's in love
    Bert's got frank le fever, I's got frank le fever
    We've got frank le fever, we're in love
    I's gone infommercial crazy, Frank's gone black-boy cah-razy
    day'z each other's baby, dey in love

    Quickbook's created equal
    Hell with all you ignorant people
    Trying to stereo type us
    You really ought to quit
    Cause you don't know jack, you make us sick
    Station in hock, you're trying to hide from me
    Because I got an ED beside me
    You'll only make yourself look stupid
    I love you're trying to dis
    Cause we've got happiness, I bet you're pissed

    I's got Frank le fever, bert's got frankle fever
    We've got frank le fever, we're in the red
    frank's gone black-boy crazy, I's gone white-goy hatey
    Ain't no thinking maybe, we're in the hole
    Bertie's got frank le fever, I's got frank le fever
    We've got frank le fever, we're in debt
    I's got a big IOU, frank's gone black-boy crazy
    They're each other's baby, we're in the hole

  3. That audio sounds like the same old thing to me - Reimers does as he pleases, RPM, a man who has a title and position with NO power, bitches and whines about numbers given to him by Reimers, etc. Seriously, we're talking about a finance committee that can't meet because they are too stupid to meet in a park at a picnic bench or in a diner? Is it any wonder these fucktards are digging an ever bigger hole for themselves?

    I just wish I knew what Hank Kee supposedly said to Proffitt, being he's the only person at WBAI who seems to be a realist.


    1. Hank Kee has been commendably outspoken regarding WBAI and Reimers, but if it is true that he initiated the Sydney banishment, I can't think kindly of him.

  4. R. Paul, Sidney, Max and the rest have been around for decades. Like Pacifica's problems. Management comes and goes. Is it possible the problems are due to the former and not the latter?

    Is it time to varnish this unvarnished blog? Just sayin'...

    1. Ineptitude at the top begets the ineptitude beneath.

      Expiry dates should be observed, regardless of their shelf location.

    2. The truism is that a fish rots from the head. I’m not personally knowledgeable as to the internal dynamics of the Pacifica National Board and its internal politics at the time of the mid-1970’s, but I am personally familiar with their putting in place a WBAI Local Board dominated by Percy Sutton cronies in the late 1970’s who had a very personal agenda of pushing a ‘minority’ ‘community’ line to transform WBAI into a part of their Inner City Broadcasting empire. These were politically connected folks, and at that point in their lives and careers they were cashing in, in a very big way. White liberal guilt-tripping along Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers lines and anti-semitic accusations were significant if not indeed the principal elements involved in that process.

      The first fruits of that effort were Anna Kosof as station manager and Pablo ‘Yoruba’ Guzman as program director, and the move to reformat the station as a Salsa station as part of Inner City Broadcasting. The ensuing staff rebellion and occupation of ‘The Church’ at 359 East 62nd Street temporarily derailed the PNB sanctioned and Local Board directed attempt to redefine the Pacifica and WBAI missions as ‘progressive’ ‘community’ political advocacy primarily along ‘minority’/‘community’ lines in place of the original ideals which had led to the station’s and the network’s rise to cultural significance and indeed for a time some prominence.

      When that first effort failed the subsequent effort saw Guzman move on, then Kosof in turn, and the rise of the self-proclaimed revolutionary Samori Marksman. This second effort proved enduring, as the overwhelming majority of the remaining talented staff had either previously seen or now saw there was no interest in the sort of radio that had led WBAI and Pacifica to cultural prominence, and that its replacement, thinly veiled leftist political advocacy and conformity, with all other remaining programming tolerated only at the margins only as what the program director referred to as ‘bourgeois nonsense’ intended to draw contributions from the dwindling remains of the previous WBAI audience (and who were frequently privately stereotyped and characterized by Marksman in explicitly antisemitic dismissive terms of contempt).

      The rot, then, historically, began at the head, and continued, and continues still.

      The remarkable thing is that the slow disintegration of the fish has been such a slow process. I suppose that’s a simple reflection of having had a signal which reaches a metropolitan area of 20,000,000 or so population. In that sense it isn’t remarkable at all.

      How could one not, with such an enormous potential audience, not find enough to sustain oneself?

      ~ ‘indigopirate’