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”
. . . page 1 of Form B 201, VPFB, voluntary petition for filing for bankruptcy . . . 11 U.S.C., Title 11 United States Code (commonly known as the Bankruptcy Code), & its Chapter 11 is ‘Reorganization’; section-wise, 101-1532 & 1101-1195 – https://www.govinfo.gov/app/collection/uscode/2020/title11 . . .
Chapter 11: protected bankruptcy, for a wannabe phoenix. Forbes puts it succinctly: “[t]he goal is to keep your business afloat and keep creditors at bay while you restructure your debt obligations”. Restructuring to praps slow the speed of repayment, praps even get write-offs. https://www.forbes.com/advisor/debt-relief/chapter-11-bankruptcy/
“Chapter 11” was mentioned in passing at the W28Sep WBAI Finance Cttee by Jim ‘I know I talk a lot, but I know I’m the best at knocking it out’a the park, OK’ Dingeman (director semi-woke sleepwalker, & WBAI listener-delegate). Hence this post.
[…] in situations like this, that is, you know, we, we’re, you know, in a, you know, near Chapter 11 situation throughout the whole network, […]
The essence of Chapter 11, especially the main effects, will be described in another post, along these lines:
• from the KPFA Protectors to the Fed Protectors: but who’s benefiting?
• the automatic stay of creditor action (including by FJC or, if they sell the debt, by the Marty and Dorothy Silverman Foundation – please note, Miss Grace; even though, by Section 9.1 of the FJC loan agreement, the whole debt, $2 258 821, would otherwise immediately become due)
• Pacifica management functions effectively as a trustee of the assets
• debtor in possession – a concept in bankruptcy law, referring (in part) to the conditioned possession of property, its usage being supervised by the judge
• the exclusive period of 120 days for management to file a plan for reorganisation & debt repayment
• and what can the members do during the whole period – will the judge be their champion? . . . wishing on a star
A crucial matter is this. Will the current Pacifica fiduciaries – the passive ED Wells & the Fabian directors – survive scrutiny under Chapter 11 bankruptcy? The judge may be presented with evidence that Pacifica lacks competent fiduciaries for protecting its assets. Glaring evidence since 30June is that the directors have chosen not to hire a suitably qualified & experienced chief financial officer to be responsible for the financial management tasks mandated by California law – albeit a responsibility that ultimately remains with the directors. If persuaded, the judge will issue a rare order to the Office of the United States Trustee to provide a ‘case trustee’: new management in the house – 11 U.S.C., § 1104, https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/USCODE-2020-title11/pdf/USCODE-2020-title11-chap11-subchapI-sec1104.pdf; & https://www.justice.gov/ust-regions-r16 (re federal law, Pacifica is in the Central District of California, & its US Trustee is Peter C Anderson)
• Pacifica’s local Office of the United States Trustee, UST (the body administering the process, the US Trustee Program), Central District of California, Region 16, https://www.justice.gov/ust-regions-r16
•the MOR (Monthly Operating Report): strikes terror even into CPA’s on top of their game . . . this UST form is a stark indication of the standardof financial reporting demanded by the bankruptcy court – much higher than NETA ever provided – a report that has to be submitted every calendar mth, within 21days. This is the legal expectation of how a fiduciary has to behave financially. It stands in sharp contrast with the abdication of responsibility exercised by successive sets of directors sleepwalkers.
As Mr Slippery himself says, he’d been there over eight years.
No Pacifica director sleepwalker had the guts, not least the Chair, Ms Julie Hewitt (WPFW listener-delegate), to announce this shattering change at any PNB meeting, not least at the full board public meeting of 7July, or 21July, or 28July, or 4Aug, or 11Aug. Abdication of responsibility doesn’t grasp the half of it.
This week, Quince did his last day at KPFA (Tu16Aug, i’ve been told – of course, like the mafia, nothing’s written down), & on the weekend changed his LinkedIn page. Nice.
In the true Pacifican spirit of communication, the basis of not just a ‘mass’ media outlet but a listener-funded one, the KPFA & Pacifica websites have haven’t announced his departure. Nor why. Neither, as of 1430 PDT Su21Aug, have the sites told the pleb public who is the acting station manager – a violation of the station’s licence from the Federal Communications Commission. But hey, rules are for RealWorld, not PacificaWorld.
(In the vid, please excuse the inclusion of the misanthropic missionary position: see the truth described by Chris Hitchens, free download at http://library.lol/main/6573C0841922255B1B87295A35DE8A4B – also please excuse the presence of a later pope, & of Amerika’s first black prez, LBJ, & the unforgivable absence of the likes of Paul Robeson, shunned by the majority of the ‘leaders’ of the civil rights movement.)
. . . sleepwalking into the chainsaw . . .
UPDATE, Tu23Aug2022 (& then some)
At that evening’s PNB Finance Cttee, CFO Julia Kennard said, regarding the July monthlies, “who needs to receive it at KPFA, now, umm, that the GM left? […] is there an interim GM at KPFA now?” – no audiofile archived yet, but at 2153 EDT, c. 23mins before the open meeting ended. (One may think a bod chosen by ED Stephanie Wells – but praps by the PNB, given that the ED has said publicly, more than once, that she has no powers, under her contract, (a) to appoint anyone, (b) to dismiss anyone, or (c) to change any programming at any station (“I can’t do anything with personnel, and nothing with programming” (at a KPFK meeting, 1:36:30 … link, etc., at the ‘boxed in/boxed up’ paragraph way below)) – but one needs to acknowledge that the public record does suggest that her contract does give her the autonomy to breathe, move around, & rehydrate. Although she probably did need the PNB’s permission to donate that kidney this month.)
The Chair, James Sagurton (WBAI listener-delegate), responded quickly & authoritatively: “argh, I don’t think so, not yet, not that I’m aware of. So I guess just send it to Maria, and, umm [long pause] yeah” . . . and to Maria we shall return . . . At the Finance meeting, clarification re the iGM couldn’t come from KPFA’s Treasurer, Chris ‘Janus’ Cory (staff-delegate until 14Jan2023, when his 6yrs are up – first seated as per https://kpftx.org/archives/pnb/kpfa/170114/kpfa170114_4792_minutes.pdf) coz he was MIA – praps plotting, given he’s a breaker, in that KPFA militia, the Protectors: “KPFA Protectors Staff Board Members[:] Sherry Gendelman[,] Chris Cory” – https://www.kpfaprotectors.org/news-updates.
Maria. Yes, Maria. Maria ‘I never make a mistake, & don’t you dare harass me with questions’ Negret, who happens to appear in the first screenshot above. Maria, the busy business manager, so busy she needs, even in these desperate times, an assistant, “Bookkeeping Assistant, Angie Llarinas” – https://kpfa.org/contact/. Pacifica, assistant bookkeeper – same sentence?!? How does this compare with other operating units? Well, the Pacifica Radio Archives has had four full-timers from pre-epidemic times, one being a business manager/bookkeeper, Mariana Berkovich (https://pacificaradioarchives.org/whos-who), even though the FY2021 unaudited revenue, excluding that from Central Services, was only $231k (Oct2021 monthlies – the last publicly available monthlies giving the FY2021 totals). Nevertheless, the whole of KPFT, in Houston, with FY2021 unaudited total revenue of $667k (same source), has been reduced to a single full-time employee, an engineer, & one part-timer, & with ‘Consultant/Temps/Contractuals’ a mere ~$2k a month thru Apr2022 (that’s why CFO Julia reported, “they have one-and-a-half [paid] people there” – c. 11:30 into the Finance meeting [2° UPDATE: per audiofile, 12:33]). [2° UPDATE: KPFT now “only have two part-time employees” – ED Wells, 18:06, 22Sep2022 PNB, https://kpftx.org/archives/pnb/pnb220922/pnb220922a.mp3.] (Concurrently, at WBAI, CTC runs at ~$15.5k a month, so 2-2½ FTE – despite the ‘IRS! IRS! IRS!’ cry by station treasurer R Paul Martin (1:09:26), 22Sep2021 WBAI Finance Cttee, https://kpftx.org/archives/pnb/wbai_fin/210922/wbai_fin210922b.mp3. Have FCC investigators, called in by the Pacifica Safety Net breakers, already sent off a letter?)
And overall staffing at KPFA, the veritable home of welcomeness, conviviality, & joy? KPFA, home of the bestselling bumper sticker & range of children’s merch, ‘It’s Nice to be Nice’?KPFA currently has more than 30 full-time equivalents: in no uncertain terms, that’s where staff must be chopped – for the sake of the network. And the stock as a flow, KPFA personnel costs have effectively risen 14%, ⅐, since the onset of the epidemic!(All calculations are below, in a pair of paragraphs.) Yes, it’s all about power, inertia, a lack of vision – not a rational distribution of labour-power.
Fundamentally, Pacifica’s decline & crises this century are the responsibility of successive sets of directors sleepwalkers, who have refused to ensure that there is adequate centralised control over operations – the very activities that could have been designed & coordinated to turn a vision for Pacifica into reality. In this, the sets of directors sleepwalkers have dramatically failed to ensure that their main instrument, the executive director, uses a control structure that does the job. Lack of vision. Lack of skills. Lack of control. The observed destructive deficiencies shredding Pacifica are evidence that the directors sleepwalkers have failed, & continue to fail, to discharge their fiduciary duty, their legal responsibility as trustees to protect the assets of this public charity.
. . . no, not a Board of Directors: a Board of Sleepwalkers . . . sleepwalking into the chainsaw . . .
FTE’s at KPFA: FY2022, personnel costs thru Apr2022 annualise as $2 525 834, say ~$2.525m … using the evidence examined in a Nov2021 PacificaWatch post, @ $66k, that’s 38¼ FTE; @ $75k, 33⅔ FTE; @ $80k, 31½ FTE … so, roughly, between 31 & 38 FTE. Part of that data solely concerned KPFA, during June2019, giving estimated average annual personnel costs of $71 463; three years on, 2.525m ÷ 71.5k = 35.3 FTE. But hang on a sec, shouldn’t that figure be deflated given the 14% increase in personnel costs? Only if there’s been a rise in the FTE unit labour cost, such as from $71.5k. So, for example, $71.5k x 1.14 = $81.5k … & 2.525m ÷ 81.5k = 31.0 FTE, which happens to agree with the number derived from the June2019 payroll records of the station’s 47 employees (suggesting a possible staffing freeze). Given the limits of the publicly available info, if a single figure is to be used, perhaps the most reasonable prudent working assumption is 31 FTE – see Apr2022 monthlies, & appendix at https://pacificaradiowatch.home.blog/2021/11/19/today-kpfk-is-losing-money-at-a-rate-of-3500-dollars-a-day-105k-a-month-1-point-26m-a-year-as-per-the-docs-publicly-why-does-no-one-recognise-the-scale-the-urgency-qm/.
The 14.02% rise in KPFA personnel costs across the 3yrs, 1Oct2019-30Sep2022: FY2019, $2 215 341 (FY2019 auditor’s report, page 35 (the PDF page # always lags, here p. 38); lacking the auditor’s opinion on the figure’s material accuracy – p. 2); FY2020, $2 282 066 (FY2020 auditor’s report, p. 36; judged materially accurate by the auditor, pp. 2 & 3); FY2021, $2 428 265 (NETA’s computation) [2° UPDATE: the FY2021 auditor’s report gives $2 441 210, p. 35; judged materially accurate, p. 2]; FY2022, $2 525 834 (annualisation of NETA’s total thru Apr2022) … year-on-year changes: FY2020, +3.01%; FY2021, +6.41%; FY2022, +4.02% … the +14.02% over 3yrs: 2525834 ÷ 2215341 – https://pacifica.org/finance_reports.php; Oct2021 & Apr2022 NETA-produced monthlies.
Well, re the iGM matter, guess neither Julia nor James subscribe to the KPFA e-newsletter: the adieu sob to Quince, signed “KPFA’s Management Team [line-break] Antonio Ortiz, Interim General Manager [with on the next line, four other names – including Maria’s]” (emphases added), not dated but archived as Th18Aug, https://us2.campaign-archive.com/home/?u=2a41e4b88df5fc0a665096618&id=c99d228302; Julia, James, newsletter subscription button is, conveniently, in the bottom-left corner of any webpage at https://kpfa.org/. (Tino keeps stepping up, but then he is a dancer: at KPFA since 2004, including 4yrs as Operations Manager before Quince appointed him Director of Operations as recently as January – https://www.linkedin.com/in/antoniotortizjr.)
It’s a pity ED Wells didn’t tell CFO Kennard what’s going on. But i guess that lil prob gets solved in typical Pacifica fashion by there being no CFO from 1Oct – only an NBM, a National Business Manager, an empty vessel getting a few mentions that evening. Brilliant.
[Two 2° UPDATES, the first much longer:
[. . . 2° UPDATE: a vessel now filled, without as much as a vacancy advert or even a job description, by KPFT’s bookkeeper/business manager, Markisha ‘I’m so calm I could be basking in the Gulf – and yes, I’m cooler than Cerene’ Deshaun Venzant-Sampson – although her appointment hasn’t been thought worthy of a public announcement at any Pacifica meeting or in any Pacifica statement, the word ‘Markisha’ simply mentioned in passing. (The ‘V’ part of her name is usually misspelt in Pacifica docs.) Good luck in getting the Sep monthlies out by mid Oct – or before Xmas. And good luck trying to cope with Maria.
[And no, no director sleepwalker has publicly asked why there’s no disclosed timeline for hiring a new Chief Financial Officer; nor why there’s been no discernible progress, not even the placing of an advert.
[And it gets worse. Despite the dire situation, with NETA giving up on Pacifica, making it go it alone, with no cash to hire anyone (not even a GM at KPFK, to replace a guy trying to do the job from 3 000 miles away), no director sleepwalker or member of the PNB Finance Cttee has asked for a public disclosure of what’s at stake here: (a) the plan of the NETA ⭢ Markisha ‘transition’, with temporal details; (b) the achievements & cock-ups of this ‘transition’; (c) how Pacifica will try to mitigate for what Markisha can’t do; & (d) what are Markisha’s qualifications to do bookkeeping & accounting, her skills, & her experience in these quite different fields? The directors sleepwalkers, & the station treasurers of the PNB Finance Cttee, don’t seem to recognise how weird this silence is. It’s the practice of the politics of the emperor with no clothes: ignore it, & it’s not there. Denial = no problem exists.
[As explained in the note mentioned, Pacifica’s “Board Treasurer” – the by-laws don’t refer to a corporation treasurer – is the Chair of the PNB Finance Cttee. This year that’s James Sagurton (WBAI listener-delegate). James ‘terms out’ his 6yrs on 7Dec2022 (his last currently noticed PNB Finance Cttee meeting is Tu22Nov), having come 5th in the delegates election held 2016, & seated at the 7Dec2016 WBAI delegates’ assembly. (Remember, one is elected as a delegate – not as a local station board member – and being a delegate entitles one to be seated as a member of the LSB, so making this derivative.) The current PNB Finance Cttee has expressed no inkling that they’ll need to elect a new Chair this year.
[Not having a CFO poses at least one problem: the FJC contract. Requirements. Certifications. CFO certifications. Who’s going to become legally liable for the promises that a CFO has to contractually make, re ‘the big loan’, to the Foundation for the Jewish Community, operating as FJC? The promises are of two kinds: “[t]he financial statements shall be accompanied by a written statement of the Chief Financial Officer of Borrower certifying the financial statements to be true and correct” (Section 6.2 of the root loan agreement document, p. 11; p. 12 of the PDF); & “[w]ithin one hundred twenty (120) days following the close of each fiscal year of the Borrower, Borrower shall provide to Lender a certificate (the ‘CFO Certificate‘) of the Chief Financial Officer of Borrower, in form and substance acceptable to Lender, certifying to the compliance of the Borrower with the covenants set forth in Article 7 of this Agreement” (§ 6.3, same pagination, original bold & underline). https://pacificaradiowatch.home.blog/realworld-disciplines-pacifica/principal-creditors/foundation-for-the-jewish-community-operating-as-fjc/origin-of-fjc-s-name-and-acronym/, &, the root loan agreement doc, https://mega.nz/file/AI0iUYga#QzMtaBd0iRTZJ_YNmh2KZ1xKu7Qh_hQ6IcPMVkGWX94
[Both certification deadlines are 28Jan2023 – as the date also applies to the FY2022 audited financial statements (§ 6.1, p. 10; p. 11 of the PDF). The feasibility: (a) only twice in the last 28yrs has Pacifica been speedy (FY2006, 19Jan2007; & FY2007, 14Jan2008); (b) NETA have walked, leaving Markisha in the void; & (c) auditors, Rogers & Company, given the complaint they face, have probably already scarpered.
[(The loan is now $2 258 821, down $1 006 179 (−30.8%). In FY2019, $100k was repaid, & the rest in FY2022 thru 20July2022 (the FY2021 auditor’s report helpfully gave the balance at the day when FJC extended maturity to 30Oct2024) – however, Pacifica, & the auditor’s notes, haven’t disclosed the date, sum, & reason re any payment: per auditor’s reports, FY2019 (pp. 3 & 16; pp. 5 & 18 of the PDF), & FY2021 (pp. 3 & 29; pp. 5 & 31 of the PDF),https://pacifica.org/finance_reports.php. The current quarterly interest payment is, @8.5%, $47 999.94, ~$48k – https://pacificaradiowatch.home.blog/what-fjc-has-made-pacifica-do/. The next one, the 18th, so 4½yrs, is due 30Sep (the 1st fell on 30June2018, per §2.3(1) of the cited loan agreement, p. 5; p. 6 of the PDF). Pacifica listeners & members have handed over the best part of $1m of their donations to FJC as interest.) [The ¾ percentage point rise effective 22Sep will cost Pacifica an extra $16 941 pa – with a double-whammy expected of at least a further +1 point to endure for a year, pushing the annual charge to $231 529, a quarterly ~$58k.] . . .]
[. . . 2° UPDATE: re Quince, KPFA management preferred to make the announcement via YouTube rather than the station website. The channel, KPFAradio, started 30May2007, & since Jan2022 it has produced ‘On the Deck’, first as a monthly, then weekly from 3May (playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLcKTcNwy7BrEsznejjHhbJnpgD1FcKWaP). It’s hosted by the Social Media Manager, MikO Tolliver, & since 31May she’s been joined by Tino. (No typo: http://mikotolliver.com/bio.html; oddly, her name is omitted from the Social Media section – https://kpfa.org/contact/; not that that would impair her self-promotion/self-expression, http://mikotolliver.com/gallery/images/4.jpg, https://www.nsfwyoutube.com/watchmore?v=nttxLeKFKNc, etc., etc..) The announcement of Quince’s passing was made 5Aug (6:10-6:38; 408 views) – but not in the intro itself. Those paltry seconds contrasted with the >8mins obituary given days later to a host, & staff-delegate, Jeannine Etter (9Aug, 1:54-10:26). Quince got another mention, 16Aug (0:09-3:44; 9 views), when Tino read a script (sic), after MikO had introduced him as Interim General Manager. She even tapped him on the head. Sweet.
On Steph being boxed in/boxed up by the PNB, with minimal powers – so ‘the Vernile effect’ – she revealed all at the Su26June2022 KPFK Outreach Cttee (1:33:10-1:36:41, the topic continuing to pop up thru to 1:49:48) – still not posted at https://kpftx.org/archive.php, but it’s here, https://mega.nz/file/tUM0QbRQ#MeTGbJIebc5aMq0lurpoV4iSVbH-Gk-YGa1zbHSEsDs (please rise above the crackle – the recording came from the Cttee). Given how she described what the directors sleepwalkers expect of her, as codified in her employment contract, Steph merits being denoted as ER Steph: not the Executive Director but the Executive Recommender. At long last, Pacifica has a social influencer!
This Quince piece is part of a triptych, the other flank being his olde friend, Berthold (who’s now telling the world that he’s looking for a new job: “[s]eeking a Director position”), with the central panel graced by an imaginative hiring idea spawned within the Su21Aug PNB Personnel Cttee. Yes, an employment theme.
If the energy allows, there’ll be an examination of the KPFK FY2023 budget, presented to the W24Aug station Finance Cttee. It was met by a series of motions, none of which passed. It’s due to be discussed at the Su28Aug KPFK Local Station Board. It had been prepared by KPFK Treasurer Kim ‘(sigh) yes, Bella? (sigh)’ Kaufman, CFO Julia ‘I work a 73hr-week, for Pacifica – what is wrong with me?’ Kennard, iGM Moe ‘what new excuse can I come up with to avoid going to the next KPFK meeting?’ Thomas (WPFW’s full-time engineer, & also working at KPFT – there seems to be no truth in the rumour that Pacifica is trying to lend him to a station in Alaska), & his assistant, Ali ‘Michael, I’d rather go after Beth’ Lexa Al-Hilali (director sleepwalker, & staff-delegate – what about management not being eligible for Pacifica staff membership? – see sub-section B, https://pacifica.org/indexed_bylaws/art3sec1.html). [2° UPDATE: director sleepwalker Ali Lexa has just left the sinking ship – mentioned in passing at the W14Sep KPFK Governance Cttee by Chair Michael Novick (listener-delegate, & LSB Chair). He reminded us, the iGM lives in Maryland. So now losing his right-hand in Los Angeles. Pacifica is unravelling.]
[UPDATE: the budget presented to the Su28Aug KPFK LSB had two immaterial changes: a deletion of an unjustified $3k from total revenue, & the addition to it of $10k (presumably to “Sponsorship”, doubling it from $10k to $20k coz of the likely PNB move to encourage underwriting, Politese for advertising). The adjusted totals presented that Sunday: revenue $1 102 245, expenses $2 219 403 (so, Central Services $500 868, others $1 718 535), loss $1 117 158.]
On the day the world ends A bee circles a clover, A fisherman mends a glimmering net. Happy porpoises jump in the sea, By the rainspout young sparrows are playing And the snake is gold-skinned as it should always be.
On the day the world ends Women walk through the fields under their umbrellas, A drunkard grows sleepy at the edge of a lawn, Vegetable peddlers shout in the street And a yellow-sailed boat comes nearer the island, The voice of a violin lasts in the air And leads into a starry night.
And those who expected lightning and thunder Are disappointed. And those who expected signs and archangels’ trumps Do not believe it is happening now. As long as the sun and the moon are above, As long as the bumblebee visits a rose, As long as rosy infants are born No one believes it is happening now.
Only a white-haired old man, who would be a prophet Yet is not a prophet, for he’s much too busy, Repeats while he binds his tomatoes: There will be no other end of the world, There will be no other end of the world.
[Pertinent is the successful 2022 news blackout, keeping secret even the concrete topics of any significant PNB decision (made in the famed ‘executive sessions’), the cherry on the top of the increasing number of open meetings either lacking a publicly available audio recording or even closed to the public thru the withholding of joining details when they aren’t streamed. Every lil bit helps. This exercise in opacity makes it even more likely that Milosz is right, that “There will be no other end of the world, / There will be no other end of the world.” – “And those who expected lightning and thunder / Are disappointed. / And those who expected signs and archangels’ trumps / Do not believe it is happening now.” Gotta luv it. Only goes to prove that when Pacifica decision-makers really put their mind to something, even without coordination, they can come up trumps. Now there’s a thought.]
[UPDATE … question 28 of 31 did wonder, “And will the joining details for the December meeting be changed yet again, to keep the public out?” And sure enough, Queen Liz III couldn’t help herself: “Access via MaestroConference (Never a charge to the calling party) phone (323) 393-4046 access code 504 258 # (Same as last Month.) Access information will remain the same for future meetings until further notice. (Please disregard any other access information from any other source. Beth)” – sent out 40mins before the meeting, “Monday, December 27, 2021, 05:50:09 PM MST”. So that’s a promise, yes?
[Her unthinking authoritarian disposition was also on display again – not horizontal/collegiate but top-down, not an intercourse of equals but others as objects – enclosing what she described as “Agenda”, rather than ‘suggested agenda’. This email was forwarded to PacificaWatch by members of the inner circle & their confidants.
[What do they say about leopard & spots? And what is this problem she has with Joe & Joanna Public? Given that she’s shown yet again that she’s really more at home in the cosy world of appointed boards, secreted away from scrutiny, she should reconsider her position within an ostensibly democratic culture such as Pacifica, & do the decent thing, yes? She really is like a fish out of water here.]
. . . the new number & access code for the M27Dec meet, plus the inner circle of courtiers . . . remember the PacificaWatch mantra, its masthead: “helping to make the Pacifica radio network more transparent, making it easier to hold decision-makers to account” . . .
The next day the anti-Pacifican forces went to work, sending a new number to the inner circle, those personally invited by Chair Beth von Gunten. The new info going to the anointed ones:
2030 EST, M27Dec PNB Development Task Force: please join the call with 408-520-2444, access code 618 715#.
As per M20Dec2021 email to the email list of the PNB Development Task Force
The inner circle:
Fred Blair, Chris Cory, Heather Gray, Bruce Greif, Rosalie Hoffman, Eric Jacobson, Steve Kaiser, Kim Kaufman, Michael Novick, King Reilly, Lawrence Reyes, Ziri Rideaux, Cerene Roberts, Jeanine Rohn, James Sagurton, Anita Sims, Nancy Sorden, Tom Voorhees.
The current email list of the PNB Development Task Force
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting has told Pacifica that if it wants any of its money then it has to “demonstrate full compliance with the [Radio Community Service Grants] General Provisions at the time of application”. So why is Chair von Gunten choosing to violate the CPB open meetings requirement, thereby ensuring disqualification?
Task Force Chair von Gunten has the added responsibility, as a director of Pacifica Foundation, Inc., of being a trustee of its assets, a so-called fiduciary. Her behaviour concerning the possibility of CPB funding endangers the viability of those assets. Doesn’t this warrant her disqualification as a director?
Doesn’t this certainly disqualify her candidature as a 2022 director?
Also, why is she choosing to violate the Pacifica by-law open meetings requirement, an institutionalised attempt to inculcate & maintain a culture of transparency & to prohibit opacity, this being the substantive content of by-laws Article 6, Section 7 & Art. 7, Sec. 6?
She says taskforce meetings don’t have to be open to the public – which poses the question, why has she never explained why she prefersmeetings to be secret?
Why does someone with a demonstrated secretive & exclusionary disposition not just want to be a Pacifica member but to be a Pacifica decision-maker, even one at the highest level?
More so than merely taking the opportunity to practice secrecy & exclusion, why is she so insistent on keeping Pacifica proceedings secret?
And why have something as basic as minutes not been posted on a Pacifica website – not even one set for a deliberative body that has been meeting since 24June2020?
What does she want to conceal? What information does she want to deny to Pacifica members, listeners, & staff? Why doesn’t she want them to be informed, to be educated, about what is happening in Pacifica? Why does she want to be the info gatekeeper?
Most worryingly, why do the invitees to these secret meetings, the inner circle, choose to collude in this anti-Pacifican behaviour?
Is it simply because they’re afraid they’ll lose the privilege of being emailed the joining details?
Are they afraid of upsetting Queen Liz III, losing their privileges, being banished from the realm, reduced to relying on the goss?
Don’t they realise they’ve allowed themselves to become dependants, the clients of a patron who’s in a position to disburse privileges?
Don’t they realise they’re helping to reproduce a corrosive political structure of bonding with some rather than others, encouraging loyalty to the leader, creating an in-group/out-group dynamic, setting Pacifican against Pacifican?
Don’t they realise this ferments a toxic atmosphere?
Don’t they realise that a bystander who remains silent is objectively colluding with the perpetrators of a wrong?
Don’t they realise that by their acts of commission & omission they themselves are perpetrating harm?
Why don’t they take advantage of the public comment portion of a local station board meeting to express any opposition they have to this practice?
Why won’t they bring a motion to their board, be it their local station board or the Pacifica National Board, to stop this harmful & destructive behaviour?
Why won’t people in a position to act try to stop this public charity being a private club?
So why don’t the invitees vote in a new Chair, someone who isn’t afraid of being both transparent & legal, someone even eager to post a notice allowing the public to witness proceedings, so peeps can find out what’s going on in their name?
How has Pacifica become reduced to this – and so quickly by a neophyte, the epitome of the voguish PMC, someone who proudly told the listeners of KPFK, in a ‘meet the LSB’ session in the summer with GM Moe Thomas, that “I was recruited onto the LSB by Grace Aaron”? . . . cult-like . . . creepy . . . bestowing heirs . . . a dynasty, a caste . . . a world of privilege . . . the sense of entitlement . . . – all so alien to Pacifica, yes?
And will the joining details for the December meeting be changed yet again, to keep the public out?
Why is Pacifica descending in this way?
How low can it go?
Why are people who do know better, colluding in this destructive, degenerative behaviour?
Below are the two sets of public comment made at this local station board continuation meeting. The spoken ‘quote/unquote’ have been removed, & occasional emphases & other italicisation added. At the end of each comment are the links evidencing what’s said.
PacificaWatch has been contacted by members worried about the PNB Development Task Force not noticing its meetings with either a stream or joining details. This violates the CPB open meetings requirement. Calling a Pacifica deliberative body a taskforce or working group doesn’t evade this rule. That’s why the CPB June 2021 Compliance Booklet passage on meetings of boards, committees, & the CAB’s adds the phrase, “but are not limited to”. This addition corresponds to the Communications Act of 1934 saying, “or any advisory body of any such organization”.
In fact this taskforce had an open meeting, at Zoom, on September 27th. This notice was indeed placed by director Beth von Gunten – but her October, November, & December notices exclude the public. However, one can join the call by dialling (323) 393-4046, access code 504 258 #.
On May 22nd, 2020, CPB told ED Lydia Brazon & PNB Chair Alex Steinberg that to get CPB money Pacifica has to “demonstrate full compliance at the time of application”.
Does choosing to violate this CPB rule, in the face of repeated public warnings, violate two legal duties of a director: (1) acting in the best interests of Pacifica, & (2) acting prudently? (California Corporations Code, paragraph 5231(a).)
Does this chosen behavior disqualify director von Gunten from her office? Does this disqualify her from running as a 2022 director? Isn’t such behavior alien to Pacifica?
#1, it is obvious that Pacifica will explode late January & into February. But, for the record, what was the date of the PNB closed session when the directors agreed to instruct ED Brazon to hire Rogers & Co. as the FY2021 auditor?
#2, the FCC broadcasting license for both KPFA & KPFK expired December 1st. The FCC webpages show that KPFA’s has been extended 8 years, but that for KPFK has no extension. What can KPFK do?
#3, a new Central Services expense policy was adopted by the PNB on February 18th, with immediate effect. I have estimated that this has saved KPFK about $80,000 thru September 30th. But this policy hasn’t been implemented. Why? And why has no director or any other delegate mentioned this publicly?
#4, the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, EIDL, accepted an application for a maximum top-up of $1.5m from September 8th. And the Small Business Administration website says, “the last day that applications may be approved is December 31st, 2021” – that is, if funds haven’t been exhausted. So why is ED Brazon still flapping about, 3½ months later? Simply unbelievable.
#5, Ms von Gunten is sorely mistaken in deeming my public comment “a personal attack”. Please re-read what I said: it’s a statement of facts & a set of questions.
Re #5, not a reference, but the blinding obvious: this is a matter of accountability – nothing to do with personalities. It’s called being scrutinised – for what one does & doesn’t do. Instead of assuming the role of the victim, the martyr, being precious, the rational response to public comment #1 would have been to reflect, & recognise the reality. It was an everyday exercise in encouraging the making accountable of an officeholder – and a signalling of the serious consequences of what is happening & being tolerated. Those acts of commission & omission objectively do the work of the breakers, even if the intent is otherwise. They cannot be allowed to pass in silence.
. . . transitioning from Joy Division to New Order . . .
[UPDATE: when this was written it seemed a good idea to publish monthly lists of certain kinds of apparent CPB violations. It no longer does.]
Given the continual egregious violations by our leaders of the form of the Communications Act of 1934 & the derivative rules of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, let alone of the Pacifica by-laws & California law, it makes sense to list the transgressions on a monthly basis, with the presentation of all available supporting evidence. One says form coz, currently, Pacifica Foundation, Inc. doesn’t receive CPB money, but on 22May2020, over 1½yrs ago, it was told by the CPB,
[t]o be considered for re-entry to the CSG program [Community Service Grant], the Radio CSG program must be open to new applicants, Licensees and Stations must demonstrate full compliance with the General Provisions at the time of application
letter from Kathy Merritt (Senior Vice President, Journalism & Radio) & Katherine Arno (Vice President, Community Service Grants & Station Initiatives) to ED Lydia Brazon & PNB Chair Alex Steinberg, 22May2020, unpaginated but page 1, emphases added – https://mega.nz/file/cY8XCYLb#4IGXyzfasCgfm-GdaYYm6WPn2XaD4UcMJR8ZPTo-Q8c … in the typical opaque practices of the usual Pacifica executive director & any PNB majority one cares to name, they’re not upfront with the members, listeners, & staff, not posting eagerly on the national & unit websites the documented reality & milestone plans, but instead they conceal & at best obfuscate; it means one has to look for scraps where one can – and collation is one function of PacificaWatch
So Pacifica managers have four short months to be fully compliant.
And with CPB disbursing federal money, & being subject to scrutiny by senators, it’s a sober, conservative body, so it won’t accept a snapshot: it’ll want a recent history showing that Pacifica has been transformed, from caprice to credibility. So for how long will CPB want evidence of the imperative that “Stations must demonstrate full compliance“? Six months? A year? A year – minimum.
The ongoing FCC & CPB violations are not solely perpetrated by the chosen secret behaviour of Pacifica advisory bodies labelled, in Pacificese, taskforces & working groups . . . choking the open meetings requirement, suffocating the transparency out of PacificaWorld. No. These insidious bodies simply protrude as heads wrapped in plastic bags.
The monthly lists will appear on the 11th day of the following month given that a CPB general provision is
Closed Meetings: Grantee must document why any meetings of its governing body, its committees, and CAB [“but are not limited to” these] were closed and make available to the public a written statement of the reason(s) within a reasonable time after the closed meeting (47 U.S.C. § 396(k)(4)). CPB also requires that the written statement be made available for inspection, either at Grantee’s central office or on its station website, within 10 days after each closed meeting.
The lists will first be done for this financial year, so from Oct. Then, in NETA-style, as we go forward those from the rest of calendar 2021 will be added. If a minion agrees to pay for the privilege of labouring at PacificaWatch, then calendar 2020 will be added.
This PacificaWorld self-harm documentary carries a parental guidance certificate.