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Some response to the Proposed pacifica
statement of principles
10-8-02


[ Proposed Pacifica statement of principles - revised - also included below ]

From: Carol Spooner
Date: Tue Oct 8, 2002 9:48 pm
Subject: Re: Amended Proposed Statement of Principles

Bob -- I think few people on these lists would disagree with the principles set out here.

However, I have a very strong objection to unelected boards changing the purposes in the Articles of Incorporation of a 53-year-old Foundation. This is an extremely bad precedent for the future. The purposes of the Foundation should be the very hardest thing to change ... and should require the vote of approval of the Foundation members.

I think we need some modesty here.

--Carol

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From: jim Dingeman
Date: Wed Oct 9, 2002 12:45 pm
Subject: LEDERER'S PRINCIPLES

Yesterday at the LAB [ bylaws revision ] meeting the style of the meeting was to vote the measures through in a straw poll fashion lickety split. Unlike the first time when these were debated no subtleties or issues were raised as the time handlers helped ramrod this through. My thoughts in CAPs.

The way the debate on this was handled was quite amusing since Bob deferred to his other UNITY caucus folks so they could filibuster and kill the time for any debate since only one round of questions was taken when as the discussion began it was announced to all that abother round would be taken then commentary. So much for critical thought happening in stage managed pre-determined debates.

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Here is the latest version of the Statement of Principles for the by-laws proposed by the WBAI Unity Caucus. I will be presenting this for a series of straw polls at tonight's meeting of the WBAI Bylaws Revision Subcommittee. This is very similar to the version I presented at a WBAI by-laws meeting back in May, with some modest wording changes. Note that in recognition of Carol Spooner's observation during the recent I-PNB meeting that it is not legal to include an outright prohibition on selling a Foundation asset, the Unity Caucus has agreed on the modified version of #9 included below.

Bob Lederer

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STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
This Statement of Principles reflects the deepening of the Pacifica Foundation's understanding of its mission as it proceeds into the 21st Century. Having been born more than fifty years ago amid war and rumors of war, it has been tested in every decade from within by bad ideas and policies as well as by opportunism. Similarly, there have been many serious challenges from the outside by reactionary forces.

However, due to the resolve of many listeners and the stewardship of the iPNB, Pacifica has regained its focus and is now reclaiming its mission. Coupled with the Mission Statement in the Articles of Incorporation, these principles are intended to be unifying tenets by which the Foundation and its membership can more effectively continue to struggle for social change. They will also become a key part of the standard by which all candidates for Station and National Board can be evaluated by voters.

Thus, we propose adding the following language to Article 1, Section 2 - Purposes.

The Pacifica Foundation will maintain a strong noncommercial radio network that:

FIRST, THE ENTIRE THRUST OF THESE PRINCIPLES MAY BE ILLEGAL AND NEED TO BE STUDIED BY ATTORNEYS.A 501C3 CAN ONLY DEVOTE 10% OF ITS TIME TO POLITICKING AS OPPOSED TO EDUCATION AND THIS ISSUE HAS BEEN HIGHLY CONTENTIOUS AND LITIGATED. IN THE SEVENTIES A LESBIAN JOURNAL THAT RECEIVED NEA MONEY WAS SPECIFICALLY ATTACKED AND THE CASE WORKED ITS WAY UP TO THE POINT WHERE A DECISION WAS MADE EITHER AT THE SUPREME COURT OR FEDERAL COURT LEVEL TO TAKE THEIR MONEY AND NON-PROFIT STATUS AWAY SINCE THEY WERE NO LONGER A EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTION BUT ENGAGED IN POLITICAL LOBBYING. I AM NOT POSING THIS TO DEBATE THE MERITS PRO AND CON BUT IN THE POST-911 ENVIRONMENT CAUSE CELEBRES ARE OBVIOUSLY WORTH BEING AVOIDED FOR A CONSERVATIVE JUSTICE DEPT. BUT LEGAL EAGLES MAY HAVE MORE TO SAY ON THIS.
a. is committed to peace with social justice

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN? PROGRESSIVE? WHOSE INTERPRETATION OF THIS? WHAT IS TO BE INCLUDED AND EXCLUDED IN THIS? WHO ARE THE GATEKEEPERS? PAUL SUROVELL RAISED THE ISSUE OF HIS OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCE THAT FROM A CP BACKGROUND PROFRESSIVE MEANT COMMUNIST. I WOULD ARGUE THAT WE SHOULD REME,BER THE PROGRESSIVE ERA IN US POLITICS IN THE EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY, EVENTS LIKE THE CREATION OF THE PROGRESSIVE PARTY THAT RAN TR FOR PRESEIDENT IN 1912. BUT IT DOES RAISE THE QUESTION ABOUT THE PITFALLS OF INST6ITUTIONALIZING A PARTICULAR SET OF ASSUMPTIONS FROM THE GIT GO.
b. offers progressive political information and analysis as a tool for positive social, political, economic and cultural change;

THIS IS THE MOST PERNICIOUS STATEMENT. IT SMACKS OF NEO-SOCIAL REAlism with all its aesthetic strictures. THE ISSUE OF CLASSICAL MUSIC WAS RAISED AS WHETHER PLAYING BACH IS UNPROGRESSIVER YESTERDAY BUT I WOULD GO WIDER THAN THIS. IS MAPPLETHORPE UNPROGRESSIVE? SHOULD WE ONLY HEAR AARON COPELAND BECAUSE OF HIS POLITICSAND NOT DIMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH BECAUSE OF HIS RUN-INS WITH STALIN? WHAT ABOUT COUNTRY MUSIC? WHO DEEMS THAT “UNPROGRESSIVE”? IS IT NOT PARTLY REFLECTIVE OF WORKING PEOPLE, ALBEIT WHITE SOUTHERNERS? WHO CANNOT LISTEN TO HANK WILLIAMS AND NOT GET ANSGT FOM THAT? HIS PERSONAL LIFE WAS , SHALL I SAY, PROLETARIAN??? LIST GOES ON.
c. promotes the most progressive currents of culture, arts and ideas and provides a venue for non-mainstream artistic presentations that are rarely heard on other electronic media;

d. exposes injustice and inequality of all types, both nationally and internationally;

NOW WHAT ABOUT OTHER FORMS OF MISGOVERNMENT AROUND THE WORLD TODAY…IS THE CONVOLUTED SYSTEM EVOLVING IN THE PRC TO BE EXCLUDED FROM THIS…WHAT ABOUT STATE SOCIALISM DISASTERS IN THE THIRD WORLD? WHY EVEN ENSCONCE A VIEWPOINT THAT HAS IN THE CASE OF SOME PEOPLE IN PACIFICA BEEN IN THE PAST THEIR SACRED SCREED……THE GOD THAT FAILED CROWD.
e. educates about the fundamental role of capitalism, corporate globalization and global apartheid in the ecological, social, political and economic devastation of this planet;

THIS SIMPLY SANCTIFIES THE HODGE PODGE NATURE OF PROGRAMMING THAT ALREADY EXISTS AND PROVIDES A USEFUL HANDLE FOR ANY SO-CALLED GRASSROOTS ACTIVIST TO BLOOVIATE THEIR WAY INTO THE AIRWAVES…AND WHO DECIDES WHO IS GRASSROOTS OR NOT? WITH WHAT CRITERIA?
f. recognizes the critical importance and provide an outlet for the global grassroots movement for human rights, social and economic justice and sustainable development to the survival of this planet;

THIS ALSO IS DONE NOW BUT THIS CAN BE EASILY TURNED INTO A FURTHER PASSIONATE DRIVE TO MARGINZALIE THE SOUND OF PACIFICA FOREVER.
g. advances the self-empowerment and self-determination of exploited, oppressed and/or disenfranchised communities, populations and nations;
h. respects the rights of all workers to be treated equitably and respectfully;

YEAH, BUT CURRENT PRACTICE AT WBAI AND ELSEWHERE IS CONTRARY TO THIS…HOW IS THIS IMPLEMENTED?
i. encourages the free expression of controversial, marginalized opinions; and

AHHH!!! THE INTER-RELATIONSHIP OF IDEOLOGY TO GOVERNANCE…HOW MAOIST!!!!
j. seeks to involve in its governance and operations individuals committed to these broad principles.

As such, the Foundation commits to the following fundamental guarantees:

1. The Foundation and all of its local stations, in the selection and treatment of staff, national and station board members and appointees to various bodies, and in all programming, shall operate with equity, nondiscrimination, and (where appropriate) affirmative action in terms of race, nationality, language, religion, citizenship status, class, gender, gender identity, sexuality, age, appearance, and ability/disability.

NOW WHO WOULD DISAGREE WITH THIS BUT WHAT LIES BEHIND IT IS WHAT I FIND BEMUSING.

WE HAVE HAD TEN YEARS OF PEOPLE USING THIS TRAGIC FACT OF OUR SOCIETY IN PACIFICA FOR SELF-PROMOTION AND SELF-ADVANCEMENT , AT TIMES TO THE DETRIMENT OF PACIFICA ITSELF. THIS RANGES FROM PAT SCOTT TO MF BERRY TO THE FIREBAN CLIQUE PRIOR TO DEC 2001 AND AFTER..

IN PACIFICA IF YOU PLAY THE RACE CARD YOU CAN GET PROMOTED AND ADVANCED TO THE VERY HEIGHTS OF POWER AND THEN ENGAGE IN POWER TRIPPING. WE JUST HAD THE OLD PNB DEMONSTRATE THAT AD NAUSEUM. WHY DOES THE NEW FOLKS TROLLING FOR POWER NOT THINK THEY ARE SOMEWHAT IMMUNE FROM REPEATING THESE TACTICS OR EVEN DOING IT NOW? BECAUSE THEY ARE MORE PROGRESSIVE??? WHAT A LUAGHABLE CONCEPT!!!!
2. Recognizing the centrality of racism in U.S. society and given Pacifica's stated mission "to engage in any activity that shall contribute to a lasting understanding between between nations and between individuals of all nations, races, creeds and colors", the Foundation shall foster leadership

in all of its national and local management, decision-making and advisory bodies, of people of color from a diverse range of races and nationalities.

3. The Foundation shall strive for gender parity and shall promote women's leadership in all of its structures and programs.

4. All Pacifica facilities, meetings and public events shall be accessible to people with all types of disabilities, as determined by standards including but not limited to those set by applicable local, state and federal laws.

YEAH, THIS IS COOL BUT HOW IS IT IMPLEMENTED? HOW IS IT ADMINISTERED/ WHERE ARE THE SAFEGUARDS/ THEY ARE SIMPLY RHETORIC BECAUSE THERE ARE NO PROVISIONS FOR NEUTRAL MECHANISMS TO ADMINISTER THIS AND SEE IT IS SO….THE PRINICIPLES ARE SIMPLY A MISSION CREEP INCREMENTALISM IN THE UNITY CAUCAS PASSION TO PROJECT THEIR POLITBURO VISION ON THE ENTIRE SYSTEM.
5. Pacifica broadcasters shall have the freedom to discuss, and invite others to discuss, the internal business of the Foundation, with the only permissible limitations being any reasonable, clearly-defined policies the Foundation may establish to restrict personal attacks on anyone and

NOW I AM QUITE FAMILIAR WEITH THE DEBATE ON HATE SPPECH BUT I AM ALSO COGNIZANT OF THE PITFALLS OF HATE SPEECH MANIA ON CAMPUSES TODAY…I TEND TOWARDS THE ACLU VERSION ON THIS AS OPPOSED TO THE RESTRICTION OF FREE SPEECH VERSION ON THESE ISSUES THAT CREATES PROBLEMS IN ACADEMIA TODAY.

hate speech on the basis of race, nationality, language, religion, citizenship status, class, gender, gender identity, sexuality, age, appearance, and ability/disability.

6. The Foundation recognizes paid and unpaid staff as employees and their right to seek union recognition under a common collective bargaining unit and to contract for their rights. Whenever the paid and/or unpaid staff of any Pacifica unit chooses to be represented by a union, the Foundation shall engage in good-faith negotiations with that union to contract for the terms and conditions of work at that unit.

7. All meetings of the National Board of Directors and the various Station Boards, and any committees thereof, shall be open to the public, except for discussions of personnel, legal or proprietary matters which are permitted to be discussed in executive session, provided that a statement of the reason for the executive session is made public.

8. The Foundation shall accept no funding from for-profit corporations.

9. The Foundation shall not sell any of its radio frequency licenses except upon a four-fifths (4/5) vote by the National Board of Directors and a two-thirds (2/3) vote by four of the five Station Boards and a two-thirds (2/3) vote of all Foundation members in a regular or special election.

THE PASSING OF THE STRAW POLL YESTERDAY WILL BE ZEALOUSLY INTERPRETED BY THE UNITY CAUCUS FOR THEIR POLITICAL AIMS. THEY REMAIN AT HEART AN ELITIST DRIVE TO MAINTAIN THE OLD CREW AT WBAI ENTRENCHED IN POWER WHEN ALL THE BS IS STRIPPED. THE SAME CREW THAT NEVER ONCE LIFTED A FINGER PRIOR TO THEIR OWN TEMPORARY OUSTING IN DEC 2001 TO SAY JACK SHIT ABOUT ANY OF THESE EVENTS. AND THEY REMAIN DETERMINED TO SPIN CONTROL TO THEIR ADVANTAGE AT ALL TIMES LIKE THE LENINISTS THEY ARE.
JIM

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From: BKSFeder@a...
Date: Wed Oct 9, 2002 1:47 pm
Subject: Re: [WBAIBylaws] LEDERER'S PRINCIPLES

I'm signing Paul Surovel's petition and I hope the force of that petition makes it clear to National that this Unity Caucus mess is misguided at best and, without doubt, profoundly anti-democratic and anti-Pacifican. I'm confident that Carol Spooner et. al. on the Board can see through this attempt to steal the Foundation for the personal agenda of a few misguided and nefarious individuals.

Mike Feder


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