Note from IED Bill Crosier to the Pacifica National Board.
Saturday, May 20, 2017
Note from IED Bill Crosier to the Pacifica National Board.
I met with the GMs and PDs (by conference call) on Monday to discuss how we could collaborate on coverage of Trump-gate hearings, however it progressed, with Russia, Comey, etc. The consensus on Monday was that we should wait until Congress schedules hearings. There was a lot of interest in covering something like that. We'll probably have gavel-to-gavel coverage on pacifica.org and possibly on some stations, but probably each station can choose what parts to broadcast live and what to save or repeat for the daily news or other shows. And we can mix in interviews of people who don't appear on other broadcasters during breaks.
Now that they will have Comey testify, that sounds like something we'll all want to cover.
I'll talk with the GMs and PDs about it next week.
Anyone have a better name for such hearings than "Trump-gate"?
Yesterday, WBAI suddenly went off the air and remained blessedly silent for about twelve hours.. It continued streaming, but a pitifully small listenership was reduced even further by this encore presentation of nothing.
If an explanation or apology was given via the stream, I didn't hear it. Around 3:30 Friday afternoon, it popped back in and we were assaulted by the hysteria of Margaret Prescod, the West Coast fantasist who is known to have spent a couple of months trying to unload a DVD set so rare that she was only able to get 15 copies. Well, this screeching hustler from Pacifica's cadre of repulsive fabulists is still peddling the same set.
Now, after a pause that refreshed, the scam was on again and, finally, an explanation was offered. Well, it came from Tony Bates, the program mismanager whose word is as good as styrofoam dinnerware. Suffering (thriving?) from a severe case of PP (Pacifica Paranoia), he is known to see a convenient dastardly plot in anything that might flicker his spotlight. Have you heard him twist African history? Has he offered you a bottle of the old Double Helix?
Unable to speak the truth or come up with a plausible reason for WBAI missing 12 hours of fundraising time, Mr. Bates dusted off his finger and pointed it at Verizon. Reimers had used that one before and it seemed to work.
Here, with more holes in it than Bonnie and Clyde's Ford V8, is what Bates wants us to believe:
|Was it :maintenance" or "repair"? Notice on WBAI's web site|
Saturday, May 13, 2017
As the May 11, 2017 Special Meeting of the PNB performed scenario that, inevitably, became part re-enactment, a desperate JUCie, Cerene the Contemptuous, banged on the cellular door and fired off a barrage of whiny posts and complaints. Disarmed for perennial bad conduct and vandalism, her disruptive tactics had boomeranged to bite her in the derriere.
In the meantime, our good friend, 'indigopirate' was all ears. What follows is his summary and audio highlight.
The Lowlights, or: Cerene questions the board’s sanity, the board (and Pacifica) question reality’s reality, or: Business As Usual As The Clock Ticks & Funds and Listeners Dwindle Ever Further
A few salient points…
A motion is passed to give the Chief Financial Officer authority over individual station business managers and when necessary their general managers in order to secure accurate and timely financial information and to have the authority, if needed, to apply disciplinary measures to secure such accurate and timely financial information.
There emerges a free-floating discussion as to the contingency consideration of the possibility of reducing WBAI, WPFW, and KPFT to repeater-station status. The CFO states that ‘there is no credible plan to turn around these stations’, but further states that he cannot go into any meaningful details in open session.
The argument cum complaint Is made that the CFO is unfair and unrealistic in requiring cuts of stations that are losing money and listeners.
There is discussion as to special fund raising to support the national office, as the CFO has reported to the finance committee that the national office is in severe financial difficulty, posing severe difficulties with respect to the planned audits, with respect to which the CFO points out that over the last two years the stations have not paid ~$800,000 in central services, and that that ongoing shortfall continues at the rate of ~$44,000 per month, which represents approximately 40% of the national office’s budget – ‘How can we continue our business?’
Edited version of the Pacifica Playhouse performance.
Thursday, May 11, 2017
I sent this to Pacifica radio's interim Executive Director Bill Crosier Wednesday morning. Since WBAI is re-airing this premium again today and pre-empting good shows by doing so (just as it did yesterday), I'm making this letter public. - Mitchel
Have you heard the new premium that WBAI offers, the "Zapper". THIS IS NOT A PARODY! Please go to WBAI's archives at 9 a.m. (NY time) for Wednesday, May 10, 2017), to hear Goeff Brady and Tony Bates pitching this instrument. Click HERE.
This is VERY serious -- selling WBAI's listeners a battery-powered electrical device that they attach to their bodies, ostensibly to create a negative ion field that kills parasites.
EVEN IF IT WERE TRUE that it works in the way being pitched, WBAI should not be in the business of pitching and selling items of this sort. One accident; one unanticipated heart attack, interaction with some other medical device or medication, development of irritations, tumors, danger to one's pets, etc., and we'd not only have injured one or more listeners but be put out of business by the lawsuits that would ensue.
Tony Bates says, after 10 minutes or so, that "We make no medical claims." He seriously believes that that statement protects him and WBAI and Pacifica against any injuries. This is Tony Bates' stupidity, and his utter lack of judgment or understanding of the purposes of WBAI radio, the Mission statement, and the implications of his actions. It exemplifies his whole approach to WBAI and it is clear that he hasn't learned anything since his last time here. He cannot be allowed to remain at the station.
I am asking you, Bill, to stop WBAI's sale of this premium immediately, and to direct that Tony Bates be removed from any association with WBAI.
Saturday, May 6, 2017
The following letter from Finance Committee member N. Martin Jamison to WBAI LSB Treasurer R. Paul Martin is an important read.
As you are aware, at last night's Finance Committee meeting it was revealed by the general station manager, Mr. Berthold Reimers, that World Financial Group, Incorporated an affiliate of Aegon N.V., a multinational life insurance, pensions and asset management company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands with revenues in the tens of billions has been an on air premium provider of financial services to our listenership and that the Mr. Reimer's son, Yoan Reimers, apparently works for World Financial Group, Incorporated. When Mr. Reimers was further questioned about the relationship and the nature of the WBAI’s agreement with World Financial Group, Inc. the general manger's response was essentially that his son was in Florida (!?) Putting aside for a moment the issues of how this group was vetted and by whom, the appropriateness of them being allowed to ultimately market a multi level marketing product to our listenership and whether or not the Financial Institution Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has approved the relationship, approved the apparent rebates being offered and approved the script or content for the on air discussions it is apparent that the general station manager was either unaware of the obvious conflict of interest and possible breach of his fiduciary duties to Pacifica and WBAI or he did not care............this is most troubling and has several possible legal implications for all involved!
It was further revealed that the general manager had apparently hired and paid a consulting firm, Yellow Magnet of New York, a $10,000 retainer for social media, online fundraising and other marketing related consulting services. Per usual the station manager could not (and/or would not produce the contract) and could not sufficiently described the total compensation that was agreed to. This raises a number of questions including but not limited to was there an open bidding process for the services, who vetted this group, who drafted and reviewed the contract that was used, does any member of WBAI's staff or management benefit from this relationship directly or indirectly and where did $10,000 come from, what was not paid because the consultants were paid and does the general manger have the authority to hire outside parties and pay them whatever he thinks appropriate for services that seemingly have not been purchased previously without review by the finance committee, Pacifica or the Local Station Board?
It has been clear to me that a conflict of interest policy is either wholly lacking or has not been adhered to. My experience as a finance committee member has led me to conclude that the general manager has consistently refused to provide financial information in a standardized format as requested by a passed motion of the finance committee for a couple of years now and up until now I have wanted to chalk up most of his reluctance to provide the most basic financial information in a clear, concise and consistent manner to either his lack of financial training and/or the fact that we have been operating in an ongoing crisis mode but these two recent events coupled with the apparent lack of even the minimum adherence to reasonable policies and procedures for dealing with vendors, providing transparency and accountability make me question my initial assessment.
R. Paul, originally my intent in writing this was to resign my position on the finance committee as the current situation is completely and totally unacceptable to me but I realized that quitting would not change the situation for the betterment of WBAI and it would make me sad about the situation so instead of resigning I am respectfully requesting that the you notify in writing the Local Station Board and the Executive Director of Pacifica on or before Friday May 12th of these developments and that you provide evidence of such notification to the finance committee members. I believe that these recent developments have risen to the level that the immediate direct involvement of the Local Station Board and/or the Pacific Foundation's executive director is required otherwise I feel my only recourse is to notify and seek outside regulatory oversight of the situation as a possible means to remedy or rectify what is seemingly taking place at WBAI. I base my position upon my belief that we have been entrusted with the hard earned money from our listeners and by all accounts we do not adequately account for it and now we apparently engaged in obvious conflicts of interest with the possibility of some within WBAI profiting directly or indirectly at our listeners' expense; a completely and totally unacceptable situation!
N. Martin Jameson
Finance Committee Member
As the Pacifica disharmony continues, specific topics come and go, but there are recurring leitmotifs. Not the least of these is the strenuous, mostly ludicrous, and always cluelessly counterproductive effort by the NYC JUC faction and its network-wide compadres to make their Pacifica squat permanent. Here is a flurry from last week that started with a typical disingenuous letter posted by JUC character Cerene on May 4th. Like I used to say about WBAI’s perennial aging hippie, Cerene—if given an opportunity—will strangle you with her love beads.
Thursday, May 4, 2017
Today, this clueless ignoramus was at it again, fomenting hate and attempting to sell it for the sake of keeping him and people of his ilk on WBAI's air.
If you are concerned for the future of our station, help restore its significance and listenership by demanding the ouster of this idiot and the whole Reimers gang.
Tuesday, May 2, 2017
Ever credulous and/or the naïve apologist, Mitchel Cohen jumps off his steed to do the deed. Respect for Reimers has its ups and downs with our wannabe.
Here's what he has come up with regarding the latest Saint or Sinner question.
Is this actually true?
For many months our Monday team of volunteers has complained of not enough work, especially since they come in from far flung places (one from Jersey, another 2 hours away on Long Island, etc.). The team of 9 volunteers (more can be added, if needed) works quickly and efficiently, and usually we finish compiling, packing and mailing whatever is provided to us within 2 hours. We've mailed every single premium we were given.
After the end of the last fund drive, I asked where were the rest of Gary Null's premiums? The volunteers were aware of a large number that were still outstanding.
So I made inquiries. I learned that many hadn't been shipped, yet, by the publisher, or completed by Gary's staff, or manufactured by the company Gary uses. In other words, at that time -- I stress, this was a few weeks after the last fund drive, so things have likely changed in the interim -- we had (and still have) the troops willing and able to get them out, all set to go, and we were waiting on Gary to provide them.
There was then some problem or argument over payment TO Gary, from WBAI. While Gary has been generous and providing his premiums to WBAI at a discount, they have not been donated to WBAI as some of his listeners believe. I've seen invoices totalling over $50,000 billed by Gary Null for the last year.
I am not saying that those invoices were unjustified -- a great deal of material by Gary has been ordered by WBAI's listenership. And Gary indeed gives freely of his time, hosts free events, etc. So what exactly am I saying?: That there have been several causes for the delay in shipment -- disputes over WBAI's payments to Gary Null; disputes over air time; the premiums not being ready on time; the proposal that Gary's staff would send them out, not WBAI; etc. You try to sort that out and you get a dozen conflicting stories.
So, the WBAI volunteer team arranged to bypass all of those problems and pick up those premiums, at our own expense, when they are ready, as we had done a couple of years ago. Alternatively, I also suggested a few years ago that Gary rent a van and have one of his folks drive them over, and bill WBAI for that. On several occasions I also suggested that for small shipments of a few cartons of material, that Gary just put them in a cab and pay the driver the $30 it would take to bring them to Brooklyn.
In the current instance, I was told that the premiums either were not ready (on Gary's end) or were not being released until payment was received -- not unreasonable for normal businesses, but not exactly the black-and-white claim that Steve is making, either.
Please note that we indeed packed and shipped a large number of Gary's premiums without any problem, so why these particular premiums have become a problem is likely a bit more complicated and less one-sided than Steve is making out, here.
Again, the volunteers are working regularly -- not just the Monday crew, but others as well on Fridays, too, and smaller groups during the week when needed. If Gary has the premiums sitting in his office, please ask him to let me know, in writing, and we'll have folks come and get'm (though it would be easier all around for him to rent a van and have one of his folks drive them to Brooklyn). —Mitchel Cohen
Let’s stick to the issues and facts that I know about first hand. As of my last writing, all of Gary’s premiums had been ready for pick-up at his office for weeks and weeks, ready to be delivered to the listeners, except for one premium, Brain Stuff, about which Gary’s staff had notified Berthold, far in advance, that production was not complete.
So Gary’s withdrawal from the fund drive was not because of Brain Stuff, no matter what Berthold has tried to imply. It was specifically about the hundreds (I think the number was 680) premiums that had been sitting on Gary’s office floor for weeks, despite urgent pleas by Gary’s staff that they be picked up and sent out to their recipients. But Berthold was being arrogant about it. He would not come himself, nor would he send anyone else to pick them up, or even let anyone know that there were premiums ready to be picked up. I know your group was willing and able to ship out whatever premiums you had in house, but you can’t ship what you don’t have. Did Berthold ever tell you about the outstanding premiums in Gary’s office, let alone to pick them up or arrange to pick them up so they could be shipped out? I don’t think so.
Berthold was simply playing chicken with Gary. And losing. But today, Berthold finally blinked.
This afternoon, Berthold did an about-face. He suddenly rushed down to Gary’s office to picked up all the outstanding premiums, as Gary had been urging him to do for so long. Then, since there was no time to arrange a live broadcast (because Gary is in Florida), Berthold had Tony grab an old Gary Null program off the shelf from the last fund drive, and run it from 6-8pm today. Since Gary’s issue about the outstanding premiums had now been resolved, at least for the moment, and absent any other difficulties, Gary could now join the fund drive.
But you should know this very important thing. Berthold had not failed to pick up the premiums because the station had no money to pay for them. No. The premiums that Berthold picked up today were all paid for. And that is the irony. Berthold could have picked them up and shipped them out to the listeners anytime during the past 6 weeks, since they were, shamefully, still outstanding from the last fund drive of several months ago. But Berthold doesn’t give a damn for the listeners who pay to keep the station on the air (and pay his salary). Berthold just wanted to play dueling penises with Gary Null. So during that previous drive, after Berthold had already collected all the money for the premiums from the listeners, he gave Gary the finger—by willfully spending all the premium money elsewhere, without a care about buying the premiums that he was obligated to send to the listeners who had paid for them.
But this was Gary’s audience, and Gary didn’t want to disappoint them. So (fool that he was) Gary volunteered to conduct a 2-week retreat specifically dedicated to raising the money to pay for those premiums, even though they had already been paid for before, by the listeners. So he opened his facility and gathered together therapists, doctors, nutritionists, masseurs, swimming instructors, chefs, psychologists, caretakers, bus drivers, etc., and in addition devoted nearly 500 hours of his and Luanne’s time for both intensive weeks, making themselves available 13 hours each day to these WBAI retreat-attendees for advice and consultation, and then lecturing to them for an additional 2 hours every evening – all without compensation. (Do you know what Gary gets just for his lectures? Maybe not the $200,000 that Hillary gets, or the $400,000 that Obama will get, but his fee for the many lectures he conducts around the country is $60,000, for a single lecture, let alone for 2 weeks of lectures every night.)
Anyway, the irony I referred to was that, after Gary had raised enough money through his retreat to pay for the premiums in question, and told Berthold they were ready to be picked up at his office for shipment to the listeners, Berthold wouldn’t pick them up. Nor would he tell you and your crew of volunteers that they were ready to be picked up. Despite repeated calls from Gary’s office, the premiums just sat there, blocking Gary’s office space, week after week, after Gary had just sweated out a 2-week retreat specifically to pay for those premiums so they could go out without delay. That’s what finally pushed Gary over the edge.
The station is too important (or was once too important, sigh) to be held hostage by the immature petulance and blatant criminality of a general manager who really doesn’t give a damn about the station, or its mission, or the community it is supposed to serve.
I would like to think that it was my series of public emails about how Berthold had goaded Gary into boycotting the upcoming fund drive that embarrassed Berthold enough to make him blink – and finally made him pick up the premiums at Gary’s office for delivery to the listeners. But I am not that vain – Berthold is beyond embarrassment, as sociopaths generally are. However, I do think that my emails alerted Bill Crosier and Sam Agarwal to the financial folly of allowing Berthold to keep Gary sidelined during a fund drive, for a possible loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars. My suspicion, unverified, is that one or both of them had picked up the phone to call Berthold and warn him that Gary had to participate in this fund drive, or else. That is, Berthold was told either to get off the pot or pack his bags and get out of town.
I hope that clarifies the issue.
The following was posted elsewhere by Stephen Brown yesterday, on the eve of yet another month-long fundraising flimflam.
WBAI manager dooms upcoming
fund drive before it even starts
fund drive before it even starts
Saturday, April 29, 2017
Friday, April 28, 2017
As WBAI breaks its nearly month-long respite and returns to another seemingly endless, fraud-based fund drive, here is a reminder of what the station gives you for your money. Forget about the so-called "thank you gift", which you might never receive (did anyone actually get the drops of Double Helix Bates an Kathy hawked a few years back?), and focus on the content and caliber of WBAI's programming under Reimers an Bates.
As you may know, Null's banishment has again turned into renewed love, so he will be back in there making his spurious self-promoting claims and selling his stuff. Perhaps also teaming up with Davis, whose nonsense he carries on his own internet outlet.
The following excerpt is a typical exemplar—taken from Kathy Davis' most recent rambling blather session. They seem to have downgraded from the Mister Microphone equipment to a Tinker Toy™ emulator of a prototype cylinder horn, so I removed the passages that require the use of a hearing aid.
Just be glad that Ms. Davis does not spot you in one of her lucid dreams! It's a relatively small soundbite, but it will test your intellect, so you might wish to skip around.
Monday, April 24, 2017
When Gary Null disappeared from WBAI's air at the end of the last fundraising marathon, some listeners wondered what had triggered the departure this time. It was rumored that Tony Bates had called this shot, the implication being that jealousy was a factor, but there are as many reasons for Null to leave WBAI as there are for him to stay—or are there? The game he and Reimers play has no clear cut rules, but money and vanity are incentives.
This morning (April 24, 2017), the affair was on again and Null offered details—such as they were. His monumental announcement was almost peripheral, more air time being devoted to a naked, foul-mouthed black woman ranting on a balcony (expletives deleted) and the plight of starving Liberian chimpanzees. I assume that Null had success selling his dining room table (remember that one?), because he had plans to buy the chimps dinner. Of course, Null also threw in a fistful of self-serving fantasies... here, very briefly, is a pertinent excerpt from this tiresome re-run: His royal highness is back, just in time for another long fundraiser, and he promises to win back the 97% of listenership that departed with him.
Tuesday, April 18, 2017
Cerene couldn't get in to disrupt (she. again, begged twice), but—as Indigopirate so observantly demonstrates—you didn't have to do a two-way to get the drift.
In the course of the 17 April 2017 PNB Audit Committee meeting, following lengthy discussion as to how to construct an RFP for potential auditors, as well as how to identify, invite, and/or approach potential auditors, the chair presented the following information provided by Sam Agarwal, Pacifica’s Chief Financial Officer.
All stations are behind schedule submitting the financial information necessary for the 2015 audit. They are being reminded and encouraged to provide the necessary information. The national office cannot proceed without this information. There will then necessarily be adjustments and corrections before information can be provided to the auditors. The national office is severely short-staffed and is encountering real difficulty recruiting qualified people.
The National Office will likely need at least three to four weeks to bring the books to an audit stage suitable to present to the auditors.
The CFO says he will provide further details the next day, 18 April.
The CFO points out that an audit generally takes approximately three months, at the least.
The completion of the 2015 FY audit then would fall, according to this timeline, approximately four months away, that is, mid-August.
The stated deadline of the CA AG’s office of charitable trusts is 27 August.
In the then-following further lengthy discussion as to how to frame and construct the RFP for potential auditors, the committee concludes that the RFP will/must state a deadline for the auditors’ completion of the FY15 audit of mid-July, so as to provide them a ‘cushion’ of at least six weeks to review the auditors’ work.
One committee member points out that this isn’t enough time, since it allows the auditors only two months, not the three months CFO Agarwal said would be necessary at customary minimum.
The response to this was that the committee couldn’t be expected to expedite their review, and the issue of two-months vs three-months as to what would be necessary for the audit, appears to have been effectively unaddressed and unresolved.
Sunday, April 16, 2017
Going bonkers (yes, even more so) over her recent relocation to the very fringe of Pacifica matters, the Disruptor-in-Chief spends much of her time these days pouring out her meaningless pixels at every opportunity and hoping that someone pores over them with undue attention.
Unwanted and uninvited, she makes increasingly desperate attempts to participate in streamed meetings that now are less chaotic than they used to be with her points of disorder.
Her begging for access to the Pacifica Audit Committee's recent fruitless clashes was ignored, but nothing seems to impede her constant need for attention.
Now a frequent e-mailer, here's what she came up with today as word of a flimsy super tent of iniquity made the rounds and another plot seemed destined for collapse.
What Cerene wants you to read.