Michael Novick, KPFK interim General Manager, GM@kpfk.org:
“It is my heavy duty to let you know that Lawrence passed peacefully early this afternoon. It is a sad, great loss, deeply felt by all who knew him. His son Taino and ex-wife Gilda Rodriguez were with him, as were I and Jeanine Rohn. His sisters, niece and other relatives were witnessing via a zoom connection provided by UCLA. It was his wish to be cremated and have his ashes taken to Puerto Rico, which the family will carry out. We played a good deal of the zoom recording of people’s tributes and expressions of love for him earlier in the day. The family expressed their thanks for all the love and support shown to him and them. I know we can all take heart from his spirit, and rededicate ourselves to the Pacifica mission and to the cause of humanity, to which he gave his all.”
. . . the horseshoe, left to right: Aryana Gladney, Lawrence Reyes (director), Rodrigo Argueta (director), Chuck Anderson, Lydia Brazon (director & PNB Chair), Fred Klunder,Ron Spriestersbach, Leslie Radford (KPFK General Manager; a non-voter), Luis Garcia y Ayvens; Michael Novick (Treasurer), Tej Grewall (Chair), John Garry (Secretary; a non-voter); Ankine Antaram, John Cromshow, John Wenger (not a delegate – see below), Fred Blair, Kim Kaufman, Steve Pride . . . held at the Aris & Carolyn Anagnos Peace Center, 3916 Sepulveda Blvd, Culver City, CA 90230 . . . Mr Wenger had just served 6 cumulative yrs – but, perversely, the delegates agreed to let him stay sitting on a privileged chair, albeit in silence . . .
. . . what’s striking is the groundhog: the same hot topics, over 7yrs on . . .
. . . after hundreds of hrs of audio-only, seeing is quite different . . .
On YouTube there seems to be only one other KPFK LSB vid, Treasurer Fred Blair’s address to the 21Feb2016 meet (13mins, including an extra-meeting statement by Kim Kaufman), https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lpwqg3JxIqA (uploaded by ‘Myla Reson’, the name of a current KPFK delegate, a breaker). Also, there are two vids of the LSB’s attempt to make quorum on 17May2015, the purpose of the meeting being to elect a director, following the PNB’s 30Apr decision to remove Kim Kaufman for allegedly sharing confidential info – with The Anti-Christ & Beelzebub, aka Tracy Rosenberg & Summer Reese (uploaded by ‘Paul Hart’)
As you may know, our comrade and brother Lawrence Reyes is gravely ill in a coma at UCLA Medical Center on the campus. While he is still with us, we want to record our appreciation of all he means to us and to the causes he struggles for and contributes so much to, to share with his family. He has selflessly devoted many years to KPFK and Pacifica as a volunteer, an elected listener delegate on the Local Station Board and as a director on the Pacifica National Board. I have set up a zoom call so that we can do share our appreciation and concern for him. I hope you can join us this Friday evening. Hold him and his family in your thoughts, prayers and good wishes. Thank you.
The Zoom meeting is 5.30pm Pacific Time, F30Dec2022.
[UPDATE: sure enough, there within 2hrs (add 49secs to the times below).]
GM Novick said (a) he received today the Sep monthlies (1:23:22), so not reviewed by the PNB Finance Cttee (irrelevant, given the glaring errors missed in the Aug ones); & (b) “the station needs [revenue] in the vicinity of $20 000 a week, at a bare bones budget” (1:30:40).
But KPFK needing only $20k revenue a week? That’s a material contradiction with the latest relevant public doc: $43k. Enter stage left, the draft FY2023 station budget, presented by then Treasurer Kim ‘(sigh) yes, Bella (sigh)’ Kaufman to the Su28Aug KPFK LSB. Drawn up by Kim & then CFO Julia Kennard (remember her?), of NETA (remember them?). Had FY2023 total expenses as $2 219 403 (operating, $1 718 535 + Central Services, $500 868). Per week, that’s $42 681 (operating, 33049 + CS, 9632). Nowhere near $20k, people.
Of course, no-one on the KPFK Finance Cttee pointed out the discrepancy.
And how can needing $20k a week even be plausible? According to the draft budget, weekly personnel costs alone are $21 154 ($1.1m ÷ 52), & then there’s Central Services, a weekly $9 632 (not that they’re being paid). Additionally, other costs keep coming in at ~$12k each & every week.
The Th15Dec2022 PNB public meeting finished a lil later than usual – c. 2355 ET. So it’s even more derelict that there’s every chance the audio won’t end up in the Pacifica archive. (At the witches’ hour, a coven was formed – no wonder their closed session decision-making has deteriorated.)
No reasonable person would think this is unintentional. Yet no director sleepwalker has publicly mentioned this parlous state of affairs: no-one has complained, no-one has asked for an explanation, no-one has moved a motion to instruct ED Steph ‘The Breeze’ Wells to discipline the worker responsible for this exercise in opacity.
ED Steph ‘The Breeze’ didn’t mention Pacifica losing $305k. And neither did anyone else.
But she was directed to make a disclosure: even though station after station is currently in fund-drive, there won’t be enuf cash around on Sa31Dec to pay FJC their quarterly interest, this time $55 402.99 (working is below).
This coming after her start, “I don’t have a lot to report”. So that kind of report.
So all hell’s breaking loose, then.
“I don’t have a lot to report, umm, not a lot has changed since last week […] umm, really not too much else […] And I think that really is, at this point, is about it, if anybody has any questions.”
That was it.
Chair ‘wooden as a chair’ Sagurton was straight in: what about FJC?
“[Pause …] Ah, yer, that’s, umm, that’s the number one, really, on our aged payables, and payable of concern. We do not have any funds that are set aside to be able to prepare us for that payment. Umm, it is due on the 31st. We did mention it to Arthur [Schwartz, General Counsel], umm, a few weeks ago, that we were concerned that we weren’t going to be able to make that interest payment, umm, and then he and I also spoke about it as well, so he was going to give them a call and see if we again [this a new disclosure] could have a couple of, umm, a couple of days of grace with that, or if we can just make, you know, wh-wh- – what we are planning on doing is paying what we can when we have it, and then hoping to extend that out [?]”
Of course no-one asked whether Arthur had phoned FJC, & what they said.
(Also note – contra Susan ‘blah-blah’ Young (23:15), a KPFT listener-delegate – FJC, as explained for 4yrs on this blog & elsewhere, never allows a borrower to default: when a loan is designated as “potentially impaired” it’s sold, without discount, to the Marty & Dorothy Silverman Foundation, the money that largely founded FJC.)
ED Steph ‘The Breeze’ Wells (19:32; her report all of 123secs, 19:45-21:48), Tu13Dec2022 PNB Finance Cttee. (The FJC interest rate went up from 9.25% to 10%, effective Th3Nov. Working: ((2258821 x 0.0925 x 33) ÷ 365) + ((2258821 x 0.1 x 59)÷ 365) = 18890.550 + 36512.449 = $55 402.99.)
So all that’s going to work out well . . . everything under control.
Steph ‘The Breeze’. PMC thru-n-thru. An operator. Of her class stratum. An advert for NGO management.
And ‘The Breeze’ volunteered no update on ‘the server problem’, that is, being shut out of Pacifica’s digitised books of account. And everyone was polite enough not to ask. So obviously not merely a problem, but a problem affording no progress. No progress at all. Proving intractable.
These people are unbelievable. They really are.
Nor even a hint of a waft regarding progress on the pesky outsiders from National being impertinent, trying to directly view station bank accounts. Trying to find out what the hell’s going on. Again, decorum prevailed amongst Pacifica’s financial wizards, leaving the non-event well alone, as still as a sleeping dog, as tranquil as dead air.
Last, as is a habit of Pacifica decision-makers, confidential info gets disclosed. Even of the medical condition of individuals. This time Mr Lawrence Reyes, longstanding KPFK listener-delegate & director. Let’s hope he’s well soon.
[UPDATE: the audio of this meet still not available from Pacifica as of 1400 MT, Su11Dec. The last audio of the PNB at https://kpftx.org/archive.php is Th10Nov (sic) – so missing are the last three: Th17Nov, Th1Dec, & Th8Dec. (The gap was when the world, aka ‘USA! USA! USA!’, including PacificaWorld, stopped to celebrate betrayal, occupation, sociéticide, & genocide.) In the last 4wks, since M14Nov, a total of 26 public meets (sic) have no audio – for reason of style, they’re listed at the end.]
[You may have noticed that KPFA is the only station with an exemplary record – it had no meetings!
[As of Su11Dec, for the 4wk period, only 8 public meets have audio; so 23.52% ≃ 24% (8 ÷ 34). And that’s excluding the 2 community advisory board meets in the period (KPFK & WBAI [UPDATE: one was subsequently posted, per note #1 above]), none having audio (so much for helping peeps acquaint themselves with the mores of the proceedings, & perhaps volunteering to join a CAB).
. . . Pacifica Evening News, spilling the beans, broadcasted by KPFA, 1800 PT, Th8Dec2022, during the meet of the Pacifica National Board, where the directors sleepwalkers were choosing to conceal reality from their listening public – pathetic. https://kpfa.org/episode/the-pacifica-evening-news-weekdays-december-8-2022/(The screenshot has been updated to show the inclusion a few hours later of a ‘button’ to an added transcript – the URL of that page is at the very end of this post.) . . .
So broadcasted during the PNB meeting, 30mins after it was due to start at 2030 ET, 1730 PT.
“$305k” seized “this week”.
Layoffs underway – “10 positions” announced “Monday”.
. . . double oh . . .
Helps explain why KPFA Treasurer Chris ‘Janus’ Cory (staff-delegate) wasn’t at the Tu6Dec PNB Finance Cttee, with Chair Sagurton silent on any comms with him, & no-one mentioning that there wasn’t an excused absence item on the agenda. These peeps would have excelled in Stalinist times.
Helps explain why at the Cttee two weeks before, Tu22Nov, Cory, curiously cryptic:
“[w]e have a lot of undeclared assets within the organization. If we’re talking about declaring those assets that creates a lot of trouble for us. Umm, so [false laugh, expertly delivered – as usual] […] I don’t see any problem creating an informal balance sheet which also has undeclared assets on it […] But, umm, yah, urr, making it more formal than that I-I-I-I definitely see, I-I definitely [see] problems with that” (7:46).
Undeclared assets, you say? . . .
Odd, you may think?
But the Cttee knew.
Chris ‘Janus’ Cory (7:46), Tu22Nov2022 PNB Finance Cttee – https://kpftx.org/archives/pnb/finance/221122/finance221122b.mp3. (He was commenting on the motion from Beth ‘I prefer to pose rather than propose policy ensuring the ED controls the GM’s & bookkeepers’ Gunten (KPFK listener-delegate), the motion for the PNB to have two documents: “management shall provide a complete current balance sheet […] and […] an overall Pacifica business plan proposing a path forward from Pacifica’s current financial predicament into a viable future”, this “in advance of any further consideration of irrevocable liquidation and disposition of proceeds from [the sale of] any significant Pacifica capital asset” (a-file, 58:15).)
Interesting, yes? But will any delegate, of any local station board, publicly ask their treasurer or director sleepwalker what the hell are these “undeclared assets”? Of course not. The public record shows most don’t even know what’s going on at national.
The lack of scrutinisers is one reason why the Pacifica decision-makers keep getting away with their incompetence. Unfortunately, revelation is usually the result of external discipline, from contractors or the state.
Layoffs numbering 10 is somewhat dramatic. But the whole picture is different, as revealed by the newsreader herself:
“[o]n Monday, KPFA management announced 10 positions would be laid off, totaling 150 hours, effective [Friday] December 30th, including producers and engineers” (5:20).
150hrs. This explains why the talk of 10 peeps isn’t as drastic as it seems – for the station. 150hrs, presumably per week, is 4 full-time equivalents (approximate saving of 4 x $80k = $320k per annum). And the present KPFA complement? Per the Aug2022 KPFA net income statement (such as it is), personnel expenses for the first 11mths of FY2022 were $2 259 812 … annualising as $2 465 249 … @$80k = 30.82 FTE ≃ 31 FTE. So the loss of 4 FTE is a 12.9% drop, ~13% (4 ÷ 31); roughly 1-in-8 laid off.
just in case peeps think KPFA was on top of the world before this hiccup, its Aug2022 net income statement declares something never mentioned at the PNB Finance Cttee, even that of Tu6Dec when this ‘report’ was presented to it by ED Steph ‘The Breeze’ Wells, protecting NBM Markisha from scrutiny: KPFA has made an 11mth loss of $282 634.
. . . triple oh . . .
And this loss is more than WBAI’s!!!
KPFA’s loss is 61% more than WBAI’s!!! (282634 ÷ 175721)
. . . quadruple & quintuple oh !!!
The Aug monthlies are a mess, even arithmetically – not least for understating WBAI’s total revenue in the totals column by ~$140k! WBAI’s loss isn’t the stated $311 893: it’s $175 721. The restatement: loss = $ −311893 + ((9065 + 129158) − (1031 + 1020)) = −$175 721. Put another way, the loss, restated = revenue − expenses = $ (1129246 + 9065 + 129158) − ((1208907 + 1031 + 1020) + 232232) = 1267469 − 1443190 = −$175 721. This also means WBAI made a net gain of $56 511 before applying the Central Services charge. (Note, put to one side has been the nonsense concerning (a) the Aug telephone charge (being bigger than the year-to-date carried-forward total – sic), & (b) there being the usual office rent charge for Aug but the B/F & C/F totals are the same . . . can, worms.)
The directors sleepwalkers have chosen not to have a chief financial officer. The directors sleepwalkers have chosen to not even have an accounting professional, a CPA, a certified public accountant. Instead, the directors sleepwalkers have chosen to do it all by themselves, do it all without the expertise of a specialist. The directors sleepwalkers have chosen to fly blind. To fly a $11m annual turnover public charity completely blind. To fly without fiscal management. Defying the California Corporations Code requirement that a corporation have a chief financial officer (§§ 312, 5213).
At the Th8Dec PNB itself, the directors sleepwalkers pussy-footed around with euphemisms, refusing to call a spade a spade. The executive director also chose to say nothing in her report – yes, that’s the sort of ED we have. All this ensured the cash cow punters, Joe & Joanna Public, got what they think they deserve: nothing.
But KPFA, that black site, was breaking the news.
Note, the news report stated two falsehoods.
First, the framing was “parent” & so subsidiary, “Pacifica Foundation” & “KPFA”. No, the only legal personality in this is Pacifica: KPFA is Pacifica thru-n-thru, not related to it externally, but related internally: what’s here is an inner-connection.
Nevertheless, the breakers will try to ‘spin’ the state action to their advantage, mounting a defence of KPFA, not Pacifica – to the contrary, Pacifica will be presented as the problem. Will the anti-breakers respond, & how? Are the anti-breakers organised?
Are the anti-breakers ready for the coming storm?
The answer, we know.
Second, twice the report spoke of “KPFA assets”: no, all assets are those of Pacifica Foundation, Inc. A station holds, owns, no assets: a station is simply a manager of Pacifica assets (& liabilities), a custodian. There being ‘KPFA assets’ is a fantasy. There being a ‘KPFA building’ is a fantasy. This is because a station lacks legal personality. It’s an accounting unit. All this whilst the listeners usually live the station in quite a different way, as an attachment, living it affectively, cognitively, conatively. This can be purely utilitarian: the station as object, used as a means to satisfy wants or needs. But the relationship can be much more: causing a merging of self & object, an immersing, even turning into submerging: ‘soy Cuba’ ‘I am KPFA’. Generating a proprietary consciousness, disposition, &, crucially, orientation. Motivating. Lived with passion, even obsession. Escalating to an animosity towards opponents, the unbelievers. Persecuting perceived enemies. Hatching plans to separate the station, the physicality, from its current social organisation, it being an integral part of Pacifica. All this is a far cry from simply appreciating a radio station, holding it dear – caring for its programmes & what the station represents in an oppressive world.
This is why talk of “KPFA assets” is not benign: it’s part of a separatist politics. “KPFA assets” is a conception consistent with an ideology of station chauvinism, the polity of a fiefdom, & a separatist political practice; a conception antagonistic & alien to Pacifica pride & the polity of a network, one that could be powered by a network development plan – but that’s a path not taken, a path now closed off.
[UPDATE: KPFA is currently in fund-drive, 11days, Tu6-F16Dec. Something happened Friday morning, 9Dec, just after 0700 PT. The news summary ended with the Fed raid (6:29), & this was immediately elaborated upon by the presenter of UpFront. Yes, Brian Edwards-Tiekert gave his take (8:25), framing KPFA as captured by a corporate power that messes up, before dumping on the station:
“our parent organization, the-the Pacifica Foundation, the-the corporation that owns KPFA, has been severely financially distressed for some time, umm, and, I-I think it’s safe to say, quite poorly managed for a lot of that time. We at KPFA have mostly been insulated from that by, umm, local managers who-who ran a lot of interference for us, and by you, umm, by-by the fact that every time we’ve asked, you have stepped up and contributed enough money that-that we could keep paying KPFA’s bills no matter what was happening in the rest of the network”
[After a while he asked for money, & from 14:06 the broadcast continued with a prepared package, Zirin on the NFL. Whether it was down to Dave, the chosen item, or The Descent of the Feds, within the hour, after a longer reading of the news of the Feds, Brian was almost in tears:
“[w]hat I am awe-struck to report is h-how your fellow listeners have responded. Umm. To put this in context, during fundraising, you know, i’-if-if we raise $2 000 during the 7am hour, you know, we feel like we show[ed] up for work and we did our job. If we raise $4 000 during the 7am hour, we feel like we had a really good day. This morning, during the 7am hour of fundraising on KPFA, after we explained our situation, your fellow listeners contributed a total of $15 016. I-I can’t express to you how much that means to us”
This is becoming an unfortunate habit, the relevant Pacifica decision-makers & workers not bothering to post the audios of meetings, or doing so late. Low priority. Or not even registering. This has the anti-democratic effect of materially restricting the dissemination of knowledge (not simply info), plus discouraging the involvement of new peeps, especially those under the age of 70. The latest example is Thursday’s PNB meet. The same thing happened for two meets on Wednesday – still not posted at https://kpftx.org/archive.php as of 1600 MT, Su4Dec:
Teresa Allen (KPFT listener-delegate) saying solemnly, slowly, with great gravity, “[s]omething’s happened today” (11:12). Oh.
Oh dear. And she asked the Chair if it’s on the agenda for the closed meeting, & as the first item. Within seconds an interjected “yes” was heard from a KPFA staff-delegate, Darlene Pagano. (So a KPFA matter?) Then came a slow, purposeful nod from PNB Chair Julie ‘I’m so corrupt I’m insisting that Eileen Rosin is a delegate even though her 6yrs expired on 22June’ Hewitt.
Wonder what alarmed Teresa, wonder what happened? Does anybody work for Teresa, at her sour cream creamery? If so, please drop PacificaWatch a line, at email@example.com.
Off-topic, I know, but there should always be room for hearing a heart-warming story: Teresa must feel so at home surrounded by all that sour produce. Some peeps are so lucky, finding their niche in the world. Truly blessed. Can we have a hallelujah? . . . Hallelujah!!! Can we have a hallelujah? . . . Hallelujah!!! Can we have a hallelujah? . . . Hallelujah!!! Praise the Lord!
[Our answer is revealed by the Vernile court docs. It’s about the seized $304 986.00. It seems that Th1Dec was when the Pacifica directors, as a group, found out. The docs have some real peculiarities – not least the deposition from Maria, KPFA’s business manager, made in support of Vernile & against her employer, Pacifica Foundation, Inc.: “declaration of Maria Negret in opposition to application for post-judgment ex parte relief”. A true volunteer: “if called as a witness I could testify”. In for a penny, in for a pound.
[An oddity is her physical evidence that the money was seized on W23Nov – yet she implies that the first anyone at Pacifica learnt of this was M28Nov (sic). She further implies that for the best part of 3days the news was kept at KPFA, with her sharing it with KPFA LSB Chair Christina ‘Nurse Ratched’ Huggins & GM Antonio Ortiz – and presumably others. It was only at c. 0905 PT, on Th1Dec, that ED Wells was informed (double sic) – who no doubt passed on the glad tidings to General Counsel Arthur Schwartz. Don’t you just luv it?
[If the Lord grants a minion strength, then the court docs will be written up – as ‘The Strange Case of Maria & the Cockatoo’. Can’t be fairer than that.]