WBAI Chief Steward's Statement to the Pacifica National Board
 Sun, 14 Jun 1998
R. Paul Martin

So a bunch of people managed to make the trek out to Secaucus, NJ for the honor of spending an hour in the presence of the Pacifica National Board.  Those of us who signed up were given two minutes to say something to the National Board.

Shawn Rhodes ceded one of his two minutes to me so that I cold make the following 3 minute statement in full.

Here's the text of what I said:

Statement to Pacifica National Board
 June 14, 1998

 In the past few days it's been discovered that New York's Mayor Giuliani is constructing a bunker on the 23rd floor of a building in the World Trade Center.  He's spending $15.1 million to build it and $1.4 million a year for rent.  Meanwhile the Mayor has threatened to cut funding for senior citizens' centers, city hospitals and services for the poor.

 The Mayor's coming in for a lot of ridicule over his bunker in the sky, its telecommunications equipment supposedly could operate even after a nuclear blast, although there wouldn't be any people left alive to operate it nor many people left in the city to communicate with.  This
bunker will be bullet proof, bomb resistant and will have its own power and water supplies. People are complaining that the mayor has this expenditure hidden on page 995 of the City's capital budget.
 And yet Mayor Giuliani is more forthright and open than the Pacifica National Board.  He hid his figures in a large budget, but at least he published his figures.

 Meanwhile workers at WBAI are being threatened with layoffs, and Collective Bargaining Unit jobs are being stolen and given to Management personnel.  Unfair Labor Practice charges on this are pending with the NLRB and will cost Pacifica/WBAI Management even more money.  It is sad that a Republican mayor whose policies appear to be going off the deep end is more honest and forthright than the ruling junta of the Pacifica Foundation.

 The only cure for what ails the Pacifica Foundation is sunlight. The Pacifica Foundation calls itself "Radio with Vision."  That vision now includes gag rules not only on broadcasters, but also on Local Advisory Board members; that vision includes attempts at Union busting, violations of Contract and Unfair Labor Practices.  If you want to be before the public, you're going to be confronted with these dichotomies, and even your spin doctor won't be able to help you.
Dr. Mary Frances Berry made a sort of rebuttal statement after everyone was done.  She was not held to a 2 minute limit.  In her statement she said that the information on legal fees was published by Pacifica.  So after everything was over I went up and asked her where I might find this published information.  She said that Pacifica put out its budget. I told her that this information was not broken out there.  She asked if I'd seen the audit.  I said no, I hadn't.  She said the information
would be in there.

So I'm going to demand a copy of this audit from Valerie Van Isler and see if 1) I get it, and 2) if the answers to the above questions are in there.  I'll report to the world on the results of this adventure.

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