Thursday, December 27, 2012

How to Shut Down the Blue Board

Here's a post that got removed from the Blue Board today. Whether the poster also got banned remains to be seen. I'm posting it here because I believe  it shows the current mindset about the moderation that goes on there. Most are afraid to criticize der Führer's modus operandi out of fear of being banned themselves. But might there be safety in numbers? What would happen say,  if all the posters there spoke out at the same time? They could shut down the Blue Board! Well... almost. No doubt there would still be one person busily posting away, and that would be the brown nosed Chris "Tartuffe" Albertson, who always makes a point to post a hypocritical "thank you" whenever the moderator criticizes something said or lays down the law.

Note that the post being replied to was referring to a particularly nasty ad hominem attack by Chris Albertson, which out of respect to the target we will not repeat, but which was allowed to remain on the board for 2 days and 52 viewings, until this particular poster caused the entire thread to be disappeared.

Friday, December 21, 2012

WBAI is moving

The word's out  that WBAI is in the process of relocating from 120 Wall Street to Harlem. The new digs will have a well equipped broadcast studio that is solely for the use of WBAI. Meanwhile management and key staff personnel will be temporarily moving to the World Financial Center downtown for the next six months, while the search for permanent space continues.
WBAI never fully recovered from the devastating  impact of Hurricane Sandy, but  has learned some lessons  in the process, which has made it easier to find workable solutions. Logistic problems which may have seemed insurmountable at one time are now being dealt with in creative ways.    The plan is to have a flexible arrangement in the future, where hosts will be able to broadcast and hook into the station from various offsite locations.

Check back for more details of  WBAI's move as they become available.

January 2 update
It was announced that WBAI will be moving to the studios of WHCR at City College, which is located at 160 Convent Avenue, New York, NY 10031. They have two main studios and one performance room. One studio will be dedicated for WBAI.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Albie needs a laugh track

This is part of a post that we found on the Blue Board recently, along with some commentary.

I'd be interested in Armand DiMele's diagnosis of Chris Albertson, based on the self-serving papp he posts to his blog regarding BAI in general, and this discussion board, in particular.I mean, why *this,* happened upon the other day when I ran a TOTALLY unrelated search :
"Also happening on the BB is Pam Cooke's persistent effort to have a censorship order against Edwin Johnston lifted. I have no idea who Johnston is, but I gather that he played a not so nice role in a past coup.
Commentary: Of course he doesn't. This is a typical example of how little Chris Albertson actually knows about the WBAI/Pacifica community, even though he's constantly sounding off like an expert.

Post continues:
Anyway, Cooke—who appears to be a selective free-speech advocate—is very eager for him to be allowed to speak freely. Johnston is probably a nice guy, but one has to wonder about anyone who is endorsed by these native habitués of the infamous snake pit—they'll hiss on you in a New York minute if you say something that doesn't sit well with them."

 Edwin Johnston is an activist, artist, writer, renaissance man, who happens to have done ten times as much for KPFT in just *one* of any number of years, than Albie's done for BAI throughout ALL the years since he, unfortunately, *discovered* the station. Why try so obviously to cause a rift between people - ? Someone who plays those kind of anti-social, manipulative games is just a low life control freak. 
Chris Albertson is indeed all that, but not JUST that. We think there's much more to his continual assaults on WBAI, and that his disruptions are the mark of a professional, well-thought out plan.  Before you discount that idea, let me remind you that WBAI and Pacifica have always been targets of disrupters, in assaults that go beyond any one particular individual's narcissistic need for attention.

Post continues: Albie has literally CLOGGED the search engines with BAI-and-BlueBoard related pages from his crappy blog.

Sad but true. It's an abomination that when anyone searches on WBAI now, they have to wade through all thst sludge.  In his overweening egotism, Chris Albertson has set himself up as some special arbiter of what's supposed to be good about WBAI and Pacifica, and he has been using the Internet to promote himself and disparage WBAI.

Might I add that Albertson has been given free reign on the Blue Board by the short-sighted and near-sighted R. Paul Martin, who pretends to like free speech, while curtailing the free speech of several  people in the WBAI community.

Post ends: What an arse Albie is.

True, but that single term does not totally sum up Chris Albertson, who is more than a stupid and foolish person who acts like a buffoon. There's a method to his madness. What's mind-blowing is how some others have acted like "arses" by paying so much attention to this guy  -- who have actually courted his opinion. Usually they are those who have some sort of ax to grind, or suffer from some degree of sour grapes syndrome - and there are even a few people who seriously love WBAI and have sincere insights to share who fall into his traps. Why they would pay any attention to him is the question.

Thread killer
Chris Albertson  shuts down any reasonable discussion about the station with his over-the-top screeds. He seems to sit stationed on the Blue Board, ready to pounce on every poster that shows up, to turn every thread into an Albertson-directed attack on WBAI. The hapless poster who dares offer legitimate concern or criticism immediately gets walloped, and will usually retreat at that point. Result: end of what could have been an informative thread. Albertson's really quite a master of that. Sadly, a couple of the posters who could actually respond to this because they have clearer heads when it comes to WBAI, and were able to give the guy a run for his money, were prevented from doing so by the short-sighted moderator R. Paul Martin, who decided to ban them on some inconsequential pretext.  One of them posted a message from management, which Martin didn't like. R. Paul Martin, who has been exerting his control freak power on the board that he now owns,  apparently believes that he's the only one who should be posting "official" management memos (never mind that the poster in question was the outgoing Chair of the WBAI LSB). The other poster  got banned for  daring to refer to Albertson's daily regurgitations as "dumps". Well off with that poster's head for using such a "scatological" term! These were mere pretexts of course.

To be continued...

Thursday, November 15, 2012

National Day of Emergency Programming for WBAI

Today all Pacifica stations are participating in a day of programming for their sister station:

KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles
KFCF 88.1 FM in Fresno
KPFA 94.1 FM in Berkeley
WPFW 89.3 FM in Waghington D.C.
KPFT 90.1 FM in Houston

and *streaming on

There's a nationwide call for volunteers to go into their local stations to take phone calls.

WBAI was badly hit by Superstorm Sandy and has not yet been able to return to their studios after being evacuated from their building at 120 Wall Street in the downtown area of Manhattan. The building was badly flooded and is still unusable.  WBAI's fund-raiser was interrupted and the station doesn't have the facilities to continue fund-raising, and can't raise the money needed to meet payroll, so their entire staff faces layoffs. And if that happens, WBAI will go dark.

It's been two weeks since Hurricane Sandy hit the area, when the entire NYC transit system was shut down, and many parts of the New York/New Jersey area are still in crisis.  Seven WBAI staff members camped out at the station to continue live coverage of the storm on Sunday night, but by Monday evening the waters were rising to the 2nd floor, the electricity wa cut and WBAI was off the air. 

WBAI has since then been broadcasting from a temporary studio at Gary Null's headquarters, and has been playing archival material and has been unable to cover what was happening on the ground; the voices of the community and the organizing of relief efforts by grass-roots groups such as Occupy Sandy. Please help this historic radio station get back in their studios, so they can start reporting on the devastation in the many communities in New York and New Jersey that were so hard-hit.

Call 877-435-4386 and make a donation now!

You can also go to

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Old Man Who Lived in the Archives

There was an old man who lived on the Bleepin' Blue Board.
He had so much time on his hands,  he didn't know what to do
-- bored.
So he constantly posted about the glorious past;
When he was in charge; before things went down fast.
And he mocked his opponents for whatever they said
And whipped them all soundly and put them to bed.

What a silly goose I am!
WBAI has been airing presentations from the Pacifica Archives recently. They are wonderful. It's great to hear radio from the past. But this guy Chris Albertson who is from the archives himself, has shown himself unable to appreciate the present.
What he appears not to understand is that it's a different century now. Pacifica can't go back to what it used to be back in his day, it went forward to reflect the times. If Albertson doesn't like that it's because he's too stuck in the past (and too stuck on himself).
So those who have not yet been "put to bed", so to speak, must "put up" with his daily releases and continue to counter them with common sense.
Note: WBAI continues airing Pacifica archive material throughout today (Nov. 14). Tomorrow there will  be a special fund drive with all 5 sister stations participating, to help WBAI recover from Hurricane Sandy. WBAI was forced to cut short its Fall Fund Drive and vacate its studios because of damage done to the building by Sandy. They are still not back in their own studios.   

Listen in the New York area at WBAI 99.5 FM or listen on the web at

Friday, November 9, 2012

The Rules

Outgoing WBAI LSB Board Chair Mitchel Cohen further discusses his banning from the Blue Board. Seems, according to R. Paul Martin, that it's all about following The Rules.
(click to enlarge)

(click to enlarge)

Mitchel's Response to Chris Albertson's usual half-truths (remember, a half-truth is a whole lie). 

(click to enlarge)

We get it: you can lie all you want, and insult, mock and libel others with impunity, but... if you don't follow The Rules, get out of town!

Anarchists Not Allowed

Hang 'Em High

"All right, now that makes four mistakes we've made."

In keeping with the latest Pacifica "hanging" meme (Chris Albertson has yet again called for WBAI's GM Berthold Reimers to be hanged on his blog), Blue Board Moderator R. Paul Martin has been working overtime to build his reputation as a hanging judge.

In addition to myself, and and some other good people like Doctor Kiel Basy ( a long time WBAI listener-supporter who I had the pleasure of meeting at sidewalk protests outside WBAI after the Christmas Coup), a few more people have been added to the list of the banned.

Banned from the Blue Board
Now none other than the WBAI LSB Chair Mitchel Cohen has not been banned from the Blue Board. According to Mitchel, his only "crime" was to posting one of the WBAI GM's updates "in the wrong place". 
(click to enlarge)

Another One Bites the Dust
And then comes this from esteemed long-time  LSB member and BAI activist Carolyn Birden.
(click to enlarge)

So now we begin to see why the Blue Board has become such a Ghost Town.

I'm gonna clean up this town!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

WBAI Faces Hurricane Sandy

Yay WBAI! Yay Chris Hatzis!

If we lose power and can't turn on the TV or get the Internet we'll still be able to listen to WBAI on our battery powered radios. YAY!

Well many things have happened since the above was posted. WBAI's building at 120 Wall Street was so badly flooded that WBAI was forced to evacuate and go off the air for a period of time. Gary Null then generously offered the use of his uptown studio to WBAI and they have been broadcasting from there since then. Consequently, Gary's own Progressive Radio Network has not been able to air, but there are many great shows on the archives that can be heard at:

The Pacfica Archives Fundraiser corresponded with the coming of Hurricane Sandy, and WBAI has been continuing to air some wonderful material from the Pacifica Archives, interspersed with live broadcasts. It's been a rare treat.  

Post Postscript - November 9 Update
WBAI is continuing to broadcast from Gary Null's studios while work is being done to repair  damage done by Superstorm Sandy at 120 Wall Street. Best estimate is that WBAI will be able to return to their studios sometime next week. In the meantime, they have built a jury rigged studio on the second floor of Gary's building, so that both WBAI and Progressive Radio Network can now broadcast at the same time.

The WBAI stream is up:

and the WBAI archive is back:

Good work!

Keep WBAI on the air!
Go here to make a pledge online:

Blue Board Poster is an Endangered Species

Blue Board Activity Drops Drastically.

Confirmation from an independent source:

Dear Uncle,

That's what happens when an overly efficient moderator starts banning good people. When you have your little talk with R. Paul Martin, maybe you should point that out to him.


Saturday, October 27, 2012

What exactly *did* happen in Libya?

 Who is this guy? Someone whose claim to fame in the Pacifica community is that he spent a few years at WBAI as a manager a half century ago, back in the 1960's. And now after a long hiatus of 50 years he is back - back from the dead, so to speak - because in all those intervening years he has not been a part of the WBAI community. And as he himself is so quick to tell us, having worked at WBAI gives one no special creds.  Look at the way he's dissed so  many of the oldtimers like Larry Josephson and Steve Post and others (who BTW did not like him either).  Yet he thinks he's somehow qualified  to make all kinds of judgementts and pronouncements about WBAI and that people will listen. His name is Chris Albertson

He has a captive audience on the Blue Board thanks to Moderator R. Paul Martin, who puts no stops on him. Has it something to do with free speech? Hardly, since Martin does put stops on others. But Albertson is permitted to reign there like the petty tyrant of ideas that he is, subjecting others to his thoughts there daily. And if you disagree with him -- expect to receive some abuse. He lurks on the board, ever ready to pounce on the unsuspecting poster. Nearly everybody who posts there now gets a reply from this guy. It might be all very laughable, except for the fact that he really is out to harm certain people. And the opportunistic R. Paul Martin who now calls the shots at the Blue Board, lets him get away with it time after time. 

Albertson mostly goes after WBAI management (of course, of course - all WBAI's current problems are their collective fault) , and in particular, a producer named Robert Knight, who does the evening program Five O'Clock Shadow on WBAI. Albertson has stated that the main thing he doesn't like about Robert is his take  President Obama. Never mind that Knight is not the only Progressive  to take a dim view of Obama. Just look at things being said by people like Chris Hedges, Mike Feder,  Gary Null, Gerald Celente, Glenn Ford, to name just a few. The list of Obama disappointees is very long indeed, even though it pains me to say it, and I'd take him over Romney, since at least he gives lip service to Progressive ideals.

Chris Albertson, an ex-music critic, really has no qualifications for judging Robert and has shown himself incapable of appreciating Robert's brilliance, yet nevertheless believes he's qualified to serve as Robert's critic. He has set himself up as  chief critic in residence on the Blue Board,  and loves to give "reviews" as if he was Pauline Kael and everyone is just dying to hear what he thinks about this or that. He supplements this with links to his own blog, which I will not provide a link to, as it contains too many trash postings. I doubt if Albertson understands half of what Robert Knight talks about, but his bloated ego does not permit him to admit that, to take a step back and listen and learn something. Somebody once called him a "monster", and in this sense he is exactly that, having little or no empathy for others, having very rigid views, and being determined to impose those views on others.

Robert Knight has been covering foreign news for years, and is especially knowledgeable about what's going on in the Middle East. In the following post, someone attempted to engage Albertson about Libya after he had made one of his typical cracks: 

Albertson never answered! Of course he didn't, because he couldn't! Albertson doesn't have the expertise to do so. And yet he projects himself capable of analyzing and critiquing Robert Knight's analysis of Libya! But he throws things out with nothing to back them up and just leaves them hanging in the air, the same way I imagine a provocateur would operate. I'm not calling him that but just saying that members of the Left are often their own worst enemy.

Five O'Clock Shadow's two shows that immediately followed the September 11 attack in Benghazi are archived.

September 12 show:
 "Five O'Clock Shadow" with Robert Knight
 Ambassador Edward Peck, Jennifer Loewenstein, Barack Obama, Robert Knight


US drones and warships are now menacing post-coup Libya in response to an al Qaeda-linked Benghazi consulate assault that killed four Americans, including the ambassador. Anti-American protests escalate in Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen and elsewhere, ostensibly over an islamophobic film.

September 13 show:

As evidence accumulates indicating a well-coordinated RPG attack on the Behghazi US consulate, and precise mortars on another "safe house," as US military systems converge there, questions persist whether post-Gadhafi Libya is a vindication, or tragic revelation of Barack Obama's "bipartisan" covert belligerence, reminiscent of 1954 in Iran and Guatemala.  

Vijay Prashad discusses Cyrenaican militancy in the "new" lawless anti-Afro militia-ruled Libya, Medea Benjamin details the tyranny of drone strikes in Libya and elsewhere, and Shahid Buttar celebrates a federal court ruling denying Obama-approved US military detention of citizens and journalists.

This second show has a fascinating exchange between Robert Knight and brilliant Middle East scholar Vijay Prashad, who didn't believe Al Qaeda was involved, whereas Robert did. It made for an interesting conversation, and Mr. Prashad provides some interesting background information.

Robert Knight had nailed it!  Compare that verifiable fact to the ignorant assertions of
Chris Albertson about "Knight's skewed picture of what happened in Libya". Two days after the tragic event Knight had it right. He beat out the pundits on  both Fox and MSNBC, Middle East experts, and even the White House! This is the sort of thing that people listen to WBAI for -  what you normally do not get on the major media.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, we heard about Romney making millions from the auto bailout on WBAI --  and heard it from the horse's mouth, Greg Palast himself, who appeared live on both Democracy Now and Five O'Clock Shadow and Gary Null. How often do you see Greg Palast on cable TV? How about never?  Actually, Ed Schultz did finally mention the article in The Nation, several days later - and I give him credit for that. But it was mentioned much too briefly in my opinion, and was not given the kind of attention that so many relatively minor factoids get over at MSNBC, where one host after another will  cover the same talking points until it's coming out your ears. In my opinion this could have been and should have been a major campaign issue. It should have been brought up during the Obama-Romney debate, but it seemed to be on no one's mind.

Then came the matter of the Third Party Debate in Chicago. You'd have barely known it was happening if you only watched MSNBC, although Lawrence O'Donnel did bring it up -- after the fact -- explaining that it didn't warrant coverage by MSNBC because the numbers were not large enough (15%) to warrant it according to Lawrence. Maybe so, but the ideas were large. And we got to listen to them and hear commentary and analysis afterwards, courtesy of WBAI. Both the official Obama-Romney debate and the unofficial Independents debate were covered by Pacifica/WBAI.

The Five O'Clock Shadow can be heard Monday - Thursday at 5pm on WBAI 99.5FM and streamed live on

It's a great show, but don't take my word for it - listen for yourself.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Independent Candidates Debate Aired on WBAI

A Blue Board review of the Independent Presidential Candidates Debate that was held in Chicago and anchored by Larry King. The debate was sponsored by the Free and Equal organization
The debate  was aired on WBAI, and followed with a panel discussion hosted by Robert Knight.
(click to enlarge image)
You can find the debate and panel discussion on the WBAI archives:
Just scroll to Tuesday and click on the shows between 9pm and 11pm.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Pacifica's Post Debate Analysis on WBAI

A little ray of light slipped onto the Blue Board this morning. (click to enlarge image)
The above is from one of the more intelligent posters who still post over there. I couldn't have said it better! 
After watching a bit too much of the MSNBC post debate cheerleading rally, it was refreshing to be able to turn to the radio for some astute analysis that was not as one-sided. On Pacifica's Presidential Debate Coverage with Mark Bebawi and Robert Knight, which aired on WBAI, we heard a variety of assessments that differed from the rah rah on MSNBC and Fox News.
In addition to instant debate analysis from  Mark and Robert, we also heard from Peter Van Buren, a 24-year veteran Foreign Service Officer at the State Department, and author of We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People, from Dennis Kucinich, former Senator from Ohio and Presidential candidate in 2004 and 2008, from John Glaser of, from Glenn Ford of Black Agenda Report, from Alice Slater, NY Director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, and from Robert Naiman, Policy Director at Just Foreign Policy.
The debate moderater Bob Schieffer said that the questions "are all mine", but what bothered me was questions not asked, like I wish he had asked Mitt Romney about the bombshell that Greg Palast released this week that Governor Romney, who criticized President Obama's bailout of the auto indusry, personally made millions from that very bailout!  I have not heaard one word about this on TV since I heard about it on Amy Goodman's Democracy Now! and Robert Knight's Five O'Clock Shadow, after The Nation Magazine broke the story on their web site.
 I heard nothing about it in the major media, although there were people from The Nation appearing on MSNBC. I guessed this was not an "ok'd" topic? Maybe The Nation needs to protect their Most Favored Nation status on MSNBC!
Well thank goodness for the Internet then. And thank goodness for  Pacifica radio and WBAI. Where would we be without them?
You can find the post-debate show as well as audio of the entire debate on the WBAI archives: 
Just scroll down to Monday and click on the shows between 9pm and 11pm.
Or you can get the commentary minus the debate here:
Also, tune in tonight when WBAI will be airing the Third Party Debate with Larry King at the Hilton Chicago at 9pm! 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Vote for Frank LeFever for LSB

Chris Albertson once again shows his true colors with this nasty post about Frank LeFever. Frank has been a shining example of listener support for years. I can't think of any listener volunteer who has worked harder or done more for WBAI than Frank has. Yet see how Albertson tries to defame him! If you still don't get it, shame on you.

If you are a WBAI member, be sure to vote for Frank in the upcoming WBAI Local Station Board elections.

Frank LeFever

Cog Dis Put Down

Signs of intelligent life at WBAI.

I'm glad to be able to say that because recently I've been getting discouraged.  I've always enjoyed reading Cog Dis, a Blue Board character and station insider who whose cogent posts have more than once restored my faith in the WBAI community.The following series is a perfect example of the type of thing that goes on these days that shakes that faith.

The post that started it.

Here's a perfect example of how Albertson works the Blue Board. (click to enlarge)
See how it works? He raises questions that have little or no basis in fact, but will take on a life of  their own, which often happens with the help of a particular anonymous poster who usually responds positively to everything Albertson says, adding a new wrinkle to the fabrication,

It's no surprise to see nonsense like this being posted. What surprises me is that the moderator R. Paul Martin allows this sort of thing to stand, while censoring people like myself who support WBAI and don't tell lies.

Albertson of course picks up on it and expands it further in his usual attempt to take advantage of any opportunity to twist the truth:

So I'm lovin' this reply from Cog Dis:

That says it all. It's good that Cog Dis is there to clean up the messes since the moderator won't do it. Although his stated  goal is to "clean up" the Blue Board, he's more interested in censoring those "nasty" or "scatalogical" posts that seem to so offend his delicate sensibilities, rather than going after those who seed and spread lies.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Off with the Thread!

Today we were greeted with this lovely message from Blue Board moderator/administrator R. Paul Martinet:

That's right, an entire thread had been disappeared overnight. Not moved from the Issues to the Peoples Board, but totally disappeared, apparently for having offended the sensibilities of the mod. Odd, considering how impossible it was to get rid of a single, small, slanderous post by fair-haired good old boy Chris Albertson.  That's the weird value system at work on the Blue Board these days. But nobody dares complain, because it could mean off with their heads!

Yep, the moderator of this WBAI-related message board is always lurking there now like a big fat spider, waiting to gobble up the next hapless fly that comes by. Why? Because he apparently gets his jollies from maintaining an iron grip on what gets said there.

Once again I question his judgment. I recall that the thread raised objections to Pacifica's relentlessly one-sided support of Palestine that ignores Israel's side.  I think it's an idea that deserves more examination by the Pacifica community, and should be a topic on a WBAI message board, as it's something one is likely to hear about on WBAI's air. But Martin had already proclaimed it inappropriate to discuss the issue, because he thinks it is not a WBAI issue.  The idea that Israeli complaints might have any legitimacy has already been dismissed as "insane" etc. by chief opinion-maker in residence Chris Albertson, who is also Martin's idol and mentor.  Yes, he was unfortunately brainwashed by Albertson early in the game, which has led him to ignore even the most outrageous of Albertson's posts, while banning people such as myself and others who too vociferously objected to them.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Another WBAI hater

This post by Stephen Garcia is an example of the type of "hate post" that's commonly seen on the Blue Board nowadays. The moderator R. Paul Martin has no problems with this type of poster, but refers to  people who support and love WBAI as "trolls", and bans those who post comments that are strongly in favor of WBAI that would provide counterpoint to posts like these. As those ranks thin, these negative posts stand out more and more.
click to enlarge

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Has Chris Albertson finally gone too far?

This latest toxic brew cooked up by Chris Albertson which he calls "poetic", reaches a new low even for him.  But Albertson, who has been encouraged and emboldened by an all-forgiving moderator, seems to be getting more and more out of control. This time however, with this attack on WBAI GM Berthold Reimers, I think Albertson may be hoist to his own petard. See if you agree.

Although this was published on his own blog. Albertson's main vehicle for communicating with the WBAI community is through the Blue Board, where he posted this link to his blog:

Click to enlarge images
Forget about "poetic license", which seems to be what he's claiming in his disclaimer, to refer to the lynching of a black man in this context is disgustingly racist and insensitive and has no place in any Pacifica dialog.  

Yet the moderator has done nothing about this man! My feeling is that R. Paul Martin, the current moderator of the Blue Board, has a personal agenda and a conflict of interest, and should not be moderating a WBAI-related message board where he has the final go or no-go say on which side can be heard. Martin cut off my own voice on what I believe to be a technicality (my use of the word "dump" when referring to Albertson, who actually does "dump" on WBAI every day). At any rate it should not be Martin's call to silence the voice that was loudest in opposition to Albertson, while allowing Albertson to continue his comments unopposed.

At least one poster though, has expressed disgust with his latest blog:
What do you think?

Monday, October 8, 2012

Buddy Can You Spare a Dime?

WBAI has a new Buddy Program which is quite ingenious, and in a way reminds one of the days of the Great Depression, which is really what WBAI and its sister Pacifica stations are in right now. At a time when they're needed more than ever their very survival is at risk, and they need some big donors, but what can the little guy do? Well for very little money one can support WBAI in a new and innovative way that can really make a difference to the station. Giving $10 a month to BAI is not  that painful when you consider how much you pay for your monthly cable. One of the problems WBAI has had to contend with is the increasing number of days spent fund-raising in order to stay financially afloat. If the new Buddy Program catches on, it's possible that WBAI can significantly reduce the number of fundraising days needed, maybe even eliminate an entire fundraiser. That's a good thing, right?  What's not to like? You wouldn't think anybody could possibly argue with that idea.
Well... think again. Chris Albertson will tell ya, along with his own buddy TPM,  what's wrong with BAI's buddy program.  As fund drives roll around we're always treated to Albertson's souped-up harangues against BAI, now fortified with TPM, which go on steroids as he lashes out at one of his favorite targets: pitching and premiums -- the very things that enable BAI to stay alive.

As an aside, I found it interesting that he recently praised one of his pets:
"Joyce Jones has the right idea when it comes to premiums, she offers
original material that she has commissioned and produced specifically
for WBAI's fund-raising efforts."

Nothing against Ms. Jones, but contrast this with his hypocritical remarks about one of his peeves:
In one of his most dishonest campaigns to date, Albertson attempted  to implicate Robert Knight in engaging in a type of fundraising he deplores - the use of outside premiums than can be purchased for less cheaper elsewhere - whereas Robert, who has created many high quality home-grown premiums, has been setting a shining example to producers like Ms. Jones, something that has never been acknowledged by Albertson.

Now Chris Albertson has something new to go after: WBAI's Buddy Program. He has taken to using a device on his blog that he calls TPM, which functions as a sort of stand-in for his own ideas and opinions. He'll often highlight comments from TPM that appear to have appeared on his blog at pertinent intervals, which mysteriously and magically mirror Albertson's own views. Exactly. Albertson couldn't have said it better (or worse, that is). He will then often  take those comments and rather than leaving them to languish "at the bottom of the page" , as he says, will elevate them into centerpieces, often turning them into colorful eye-catching images.

Who is TPM Really?
Is TPM a fictional character? A real person? A composite? Who knows? Does Albertson even know? TPM of course, stands for The Pacifca Maven, although there's nothing of the maven about TPM, who hates WBAI as much as Albertson does.

TPM is the way Albertson now goes about telling us not to support WBAI. And it comes as no surprise that WBAI's recent effort to raise funds via the Buddy Program is their latest target. Both Albertson and TPM have been disparaging the program and making fun of it. Sadly there are otherwise intelligent people connected to WBAI who ostensibly care about the station (including R. Paul Martin, the current moderator of the Ble Board), who fall for their propaganda. When will they wake up to the fact that this is destructive hate speech that is not in any way helping WBAI, and could be hurting it?

I give credit to LSB Candidate Frank LeFever, who often does understand that, although he bends over backwards to be fair too often, in my opinion. In return, Albertson often disrespects Frank and denigrates his tireless efforts to help WBAI. Albertson has the cynicism to question Frank's motives, often labeling them as self-interestexhibitionism and all the usual stuff we hear too often from Albertson. Although I don't always agree 100% with Frank, I applaud his efforts to help WBAI, which are often done at great expense to himself and his own health.
Check out Frank's Facebook pages:

I urge everyone to vote for Frank LeFever and the other indpendent candidates in the upcoming Local Station Board elections.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Uncle Sidney Smith posted this today:

Has it finally happened?
By:Glacial Drift (
Date: Saturday, 6 October 2012, at 12:03 pm
No one bothers to post anymore.The stupid, and ugly finally pushed everyone away?

Dear Uncle, it's your pal R. Paul Martin who was stupid enough to push everyone away! In the words of  your other pal Chris Albertson, the moderator has "cleaned up" this board, and made it safe for -- what? not safe for democracy or freedom of speech, but safe for posting -- so that you and a few good men can now post safely unopposed by the bad and the  ugly trolls that once terrorized the board. Gee, you might as well be talking to a chair now! 


Friday, October 5, 2012

Don't Support WBAI

That's right, while the station struggles to stay alive, we have this kind of advice being published by a supposed "friend" of WBAI. Need I state the obvious? With friends like this, who needs enemies?

Actually he is no friend. He doesn't really like WBAI very much. What he likes is the ghost of a WBAI past, something that exists only in his memories of 50 years ago. Things always look best in the golden haze of  days long gone by. The truth is, things weren't so very wonderful back then, as you can find out by reading a little history (further down in this blog). But back to the point here. For whatever reason, Albertson wants to hurt WBAI while professing a desire to help it. Don't believe it. Almost every one of his communiques is misleading or destructive in some way. And that's why I've spent so much of my precious time opposing him, pointing out the truth when I see a distortion.

The post (below) which appears on his own blog, is a recent example of the type of disruptive provocateurism employed by Mr. Albertson:

It's also an illustration of  how the current Blue Board moderator, WBAI staff member R. Paul Martin, supports this guy. It's also an indication of an apparent ulterior motive in his banning of the one who would most consistently point out Albertson's half-truths and fallacies when they occurred. Of course Albertson has called me a troll because he doesn't like that! And he refers to my banning as "cleaning house". What happened to the free speech that you so vaunted in the past, Mr. Albertson? Your hypocrisy is outstanding though not surprising.

But for R. Paul Martin to fall for that is inexcusable. I had thought he was far more intelligent than that, but what I'm seeing is either fuzzy logic, anti-womanism, or...  an ulterior motive in banning me and enabling Albertson. No matter what you want to believe regarding his motivation or intelligence, one has to admit that it's a conflict of interest for a WBAI staff member to be moderating this stuff, and making these kinds of decisions.

Martin's decision was as follows: Albertson's post (above) that contained a link to these most recent inaccuracies and rumors, was allowed to stand, while my post (below) that partially refuted them was removed shortly after it appeared:

At least one other person disliked what Albertson was doing here. Here's a comment made by Mitchel Cohen, the outgoing Chair of the WBAI Local Station Board:

One Flew Out of the Cuckoo's Nest

I've noticed that Blue Board postings have thinned to a trickle recently. Suppress the free speech of Chris Albertson's opponents and look what happens. Is this the trickle down theory of posting

Not just one, but maybe two or three flew out
I've also noticed that some of the best posters there have disappeared. This occurred right around the same time that I was going - not that gently - into that good night. Were they taking a stand? Did they willingly go into that goodlight exile? Or were they also banned?

And around the same time we were also being treated to this hypocritical political speech by the new Blue Board moderator R. Paul "Nurse Ratched" Martin, given on his Saturday morning radio show on WBAI:

"Some greasy fried chicken franchise owner has this biblical crap going on about who can get married, so there's this big flap about all of that. People say: "Oh, he has free speech rights!" Of course he does. He gets to say his anti-gay crap and people get to counter with their free speech too. I mean, the remedy for free speech that you don't like is more free speech. Say something about it. Say: "Well I disagree, and this guy is a nincompoop", and all those wonderful things that we can all say about each other."       

Is that crazy enough for ya?

Then I found this notice from a bygone era:

A kinder, gentler time.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Is his 3-year hibernation over?

No sooner had I polished off The Big Lies post when I found the following exchange on the Blue Board:

Re: Is the 3-year hibernation over?
By:Frank LeFever <Send E-Mail> (
Date: Wednesday, 3 October 2012, at 4:59 pm
In Response To: Is his 3-year hibernation over? (Chris Albertson)
Apparently Chris and I received and relayed to blueboard Berthold's message at about the same time, his snidely-headed entry posted before I hit the "post" button.As usual, Chris repeats the Big Lie he has so predictably repeated at every opportunity, i.e. that Berthold is somehow hiding, under a rock, avoiding questions. Rather than thanking Berthold for today's initiative, he says "oh, does this mean you will stop beating your wife?"ALSO PREDICTABLE: Chris will say it's beneath him to attend the LSB meeting, has no wish to intrude or to call attention to himself, etc. etc. and in a dozen other ways chicken out, passing up an opportunity to confront Berthold and "his defenders" face to face.He'll say, "my views are well known".Ha ha ha. There will be those at the LSB meeting who will not even recognize his name, much less know his "well known" views. That's what he's really afraid of.Of those who might recognize them, some will do so because of his cameo appearances (n = 2) in the Bob Fass documentary, "Radio Unnameable" (screenings of which he also dared not attend).

What does it mean? Well it seems there were dueling keyboards, where two posters both hit the enter key at the same time, and posted the same announcement:

Berthold seeking questions *LINK*
By:Frank LeFever <Send E-Mail> (
Date: Wednesday, 3 October 2012, at 4:45 pm
GM BERTHOLD REIMERS SUGGESTS AGENDA ITEM FOR OCT. 10 LSB MEETING:------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Re: [WBAI-LSB-PUBLIC] Next LSB meeting OCT 10
Wednesday, October 3, 2012 4:34 PM
From: Berthold Reimers
To: "Mitchel Cohen"
Cc: "", "Hatzis Chris", "Davis Kathy", "Katz Andrea"
WBAI Management report 1 hour with questions. Why? What can be more important than knowing what is going on at WBAI. Since I could not attend the last meeting, there is a lot to talk about:
1. Programming
2. Finance
3. FundDrive
3. WBAI Silent Auction 11-7-2012
4. 120 Wall Street - Plans
5. Chris Hedges at Ethical Culture 10-15-2012
6. WBAI at the Apollo Theater 10-16-2012
7. WBAI website - Increasing traffic and exposure
8. Cuts - 2 cut already made - status
9. WBAI staff impression 5 minutes or more
10. Election: List, process, etc...
11. Premium - Status, progress, etc...
12. Outreach initiative to the community and to the progressive caucus of the City council.
13. Opening up the station to the community.
14. BAI Buddy
Anyone of these items could be a conversation for the entire night. However, I would appreciate if the LSB could be prepared with concrete proposals to help WBAI. Please feel free to send me your ideas so I can incorporate in the presentation.Thanks,Berthold Reimers
General Manager
WBAI Radio 99.5 FM

Chris Albertson's announcement was of course embellished by sarcasm, which is what Frank LeFever is referring to here.  Frank is also referring to one of the Big Lies that Albertson has promulgated for several years, the one that Berthold Reimers is a do-nothing manager who hides from the listeners (look who's talking). Now this seems to be a conclusion that Albertson has arrived at all on his own, which he likes to repeat over and over, until he believes that the rest of us believe it too. Well I for one have actually listened to Management's reports to the listeners, to the LSB, and to the PNB, and I'm well aware that Mr. Reimers continually engages in constructive activities that benefit the station, often working late into the night. Time to face the facts, Albie. Why is that so hard, I wonder?

The Big Lies

Almost daily for two years now, an entity purporting to be a former station manager named Chris Albertson posts hearsay, conjecture and even blatant lies on a WBAI listener's forum known as The Blue Board. I say purports because no one has actually seen the man in person since he avoids WBAI meetings and events, even the recent screening of a film about his former colleague, Bob Fass of Radio Unnameable fame, in which he himself was featured:

It kind of reminds me of The Big Lie technique used by the Republcans during the election campaign -- in which they keep repeating things like how Obama took 716 billion away from Medicare, or how Obama removed the work requirement from welfare. Neither is true but the idea seems to be that if enough people hear it enough times - especially people who are not paying particularly close attention -- eventually it becomes "true" by default.

This is why I've always thought it important to confront Albertson whenever I knew something he was saying was not true. I posted there not to keep Albertson honest - LOL - but to provide an alternative point of view. Such thinking is not so uncommon at a place like WBAI. But far from being rewarded for my efforts I actually got "fired" by the new moderator R. Paul Martin, who has demonized me as a trouble-maker, even referred to me as a troll. What's up with that? Why kill the whistle blower? Methinks there may be a conspiracy afoot. Such thinking is not so uncommon at a place like WBAI.

More to come...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Blue Board Dispute

I'm having a problem with R. Paul Martin, the current moderator of the WBAI Radio Listeners' Forum (aka the Blue Board). After preventing me from exercising my free speech on that board, Martin has attempted to portray me as a troll and disruptor, in order, presumably, to justify his actions.

Nothing could be further from the truth! I have not been there to attack or disrupt, but to provide counterpoint to a disruptor who launches almost daily attacks on WBAI and in particular on one of its producers. Now let me say that even if you disagree with my assessment, that is still no reason to keep me from speaking my mind.

Ironically, Martin said the following on his own radio show, just prior to banning me:

"Some greasy fried chicken franchise owner has this biblical crap going on about who can get married, so there's this big flap about all of that. People say: "Oh, he has free speech rights!" Of course he does. He gets to say his anti-gay c*** and people get to counter with their free speech too. I mean, the remedy for free speech that you don't like is more free speech. Say something about it. Say: "Well I disagree, and this guy is a nincompoop", and all those wonderful things that we can all say about each other."

Ever since he took over moderation of the board, Mr. Martin has been a man on a mission: to rid the board of the "bad guys" that are causing all the "disruption". Well that's all well and good, but instead of being objective as a moderator should be, he has allowed his personal pet peeves and private motivations  to dictate who the bad guys are.

Mr. Martin has an agenda which is not totally clear at this point, but the result is that he has been protecting the free speech of the main offender on that message board, and demonizing those who oppose that or offer a counterpoint. More on that later, when I'll flesh out the details, but for now I am posting his latest communique on the board, along with my reply, which will surely be taken down if it even manages to make it through his filters. In his eagerness to "clean up" the Blue Board, Martin has constructed an elaborate set of word filters that must surely rival Pakistan's list of taboo words, making each post to that message board now a hit or miss affair. 

Again, I don't completely understand what Mr. Martin's agenda is, but I think it may have something to do with viewing the producer that has been routinely unfairly attacked and insulted there as a competitor rather than a colleague. If that's true, it's sad and rather ugly. But more on that later as we get more clarity...

Meanwhile, here's Moderator Martin's latest  post. Notice the scary militaristic insignia. Still pondering that one. (Click to enlarge)

Here's my reply. (Click to enlarge)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Who is Chris Albertson - Really?

Who is Chris Albertson - Really?
(Part 3)

A short-term WBAI manager who, in 1965, sided with the anticommunist fervor of the times, and personally censored one of Pacifica's finest productions -- WBAI reporter Chris Koch's groundbreaking first-hand reports from Hanoi during the Vietnam war.
Following a staff revolt over his censorship, Albertson was run out of WBAI and, ever since, has been prolifically, verbosely, and revisionistically self-praising his brief, failed WBAI "management" tenure - and of course, "defending" his notorious blows against "anti-war" journalism and "free speech radio."

Nevertheless, Albertson's contentious and censorious time at WBAI has been documented by radio historian Jesse Walker, as well as the far-more-popular former WBAI station manager Steve Post - whose challenge to Albertson's censorship earned him (and others) Albertson's eternal enmity.

"Uneasy Listening: Pacifica Radio's Civil War"By Matthew Lasar

"In 1965 WBAI's Chris Koch became the first American to cover the Vietnam war from Hanoi. Infuriated that Koch had not forewarned Pacifica of his illegal trip, board members forced him to submit his scripts to them for review. They demanded over 100 changes in the narrative.
Had 4,000 listeners not threatened to cancel their subscriptions in protest over this interference, it is unclear whether Koch's reports would have been broadcast over WBAI."

"Rebels on the Air: An Alternative History of Radio in America"By Jesse Walker

"Of course, this being Pacifica, lots of people were fighting witft one another. One of the fiercest battles came in 1965, when program director Christopher Koch traveled illegally to North Vietnam and recorded the raw material for a series of one-hour shows on the then-nascent war. The series' stance was far friendlier to the Viet Cong than was ordinarily heard at that early date."
Walker goes on to confirm a similar account of Albertson's censorship as presented in Steve Post's ""Playing in the FM Band: A Personal Account of Free Radio"" [See Post excerpt below].
Again, according to Walker:

"So now Koch was traveling illegally to Vietnam and making broadcasts that were bound to anger the government. Several board members got mad, both at the programs themselves and at the fact that they had not been forewarned of (and, presumably, given a chance to veto) Koch's unlawful sojourn.

"Some wanted to edit out parts of Koch's programs. Louis Schweitzer—the station's landlord as well as its former owner, and a major donor as well—cast his lot with the censors.

"So did the station manager, a nervous Chris Albertson. Koch refused to soften his shows and eventually walked out, taking at least five more staffers with him. A lot of angry listeners canceled their subscriptions, too.

"When the dust cleared, Albertson was out and most of the staff were back."

"Playing in the FM Band: A Personal Account of Free Radio"
By Steve Post

Chris Albertson, producer of Inside, Radio Unnameable’s Saturday-night counterpart, had been on the staff for two years, rising in his first nine months from announcer to station manager – a prime Pacifica example of the “Peter Principle.”

As a producer, he had a unique talent: his programs were a spectacular blend of jazz, preproduced satirical pieces, and artfully edited sound montages. But as station manager, he helped precipitate one of the WBAI’s most severe internal political crises.

The crisis came to a head in the summer of 1965, when Chris Koch, WBAI’s program director, announced that he would leave shortly for a vacation in Paris. Actually he and a number of other American journalists were on their way to North Vietnam - one of the first groups of American newsmen to be admitted to that country since the intensification of the war. He returned later that summer with hours and hours of tape, which he boiled down into a series of hour-long programs, presenting what, at the time, must have seemed a startlingly sympathetic portrait of the North Vietnamese struggle – views which I suspect today would hardly raise an eyebrow among at least a substantial minority of Americans. But back then the war was still a “police action,” American soldiers were simply “advisors,” and it was not nearly so sage to project views espoused by a growing, but still tiny “peace movement.”

A few of Pacifica’s board members, as well as the station’s single large financial contributor at the time, were angered over Koch’s illegal journey, which had been made without the prior knowledge or consent of the cautious Pacifica hierarchy. Upon hearing the programs, they demanded that Koch make certain deletions.
It was an astounding violation of the spirit and principle of listener-sponsored radio, a case of self-censorship within an institution whose unbending dedication is to the First Amendment. In addition, the board was attempting to impose its will in a programing matter over that of the staff, which further aggravated years of already tense relations between board and staff.
Albertson, fearing for the station’s financial life, as well as for his own job, capitulated to the wishes of the board, and insisted that the changes be made. Koch, backed by a good number of the staff, refused.

For weeks tensions ran unbearably high. The business of running a radio station virtually halted and was replaced by midnight meetings, office politics, and back-stabbing gossip. Finally, with the station near paralysis, Albertson called a staff meeting at which we could confront the issue directly and, one way or another, settle it. Hours of mostly bitter and hostile debate led nowhere.

Finally (aggravated by the sudden appearance at the meeting of the station’s large contributor) Koch rose, followed by nearly half the staff, and left the room. All subsequently resigned, leaving behind them little more than the physical facilities.

Listeners, shocked by management’s failure to support the staff, canceled their subscriptions by the thousands, and within a year WBAI had lost nearly a third of its subscribers – the list falling from eleven thousand to seven thousand. It was an astonishing display of the power of our subscribers, and, in its tragic way, a reaffirmation of the validity of a communications medium supported, and therefore controlled, by broad-based community participation.

In the wake of the walkout, programing became pathetically dull, consisting mainly of hour upon hour of BBC-produced transcripts – productions of Greek tragedies, interviews with Cambridge scholars, and organ recitals – with almost no originally produced programing. Even WBAI’s highly regarded newscasts became little more than extended versions of what was available at scores of other radio stations – ripped and read directly from the news wire services. [...]

A generally oppressive atmosphere prevailed about the station in those days. Chris Albertson, growing increasingly paranoid since the walkout, kept his ears closely tuned to the station, never hesitating to phone and chastise the person on the air at any time of day or night. The tension was not conducive to creative growth, and this was reflected not only in our programing, but in listener reaction and financial support as well.

Finally, in the spring of 1966, Albertson, under pressure from all quarters, resigned.