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KPFA Alert: Corrupted 2007 KPFA LSB Elections Must Be Nullified. <01.06.08>
by Felipe Messina ( messinamorrissey [at] gmail.com )
Sunday Jan 6th, 2008 9:07 PM
According to the http://www.kpfa.org website, the "next Public KPFA LSB meeting will be held on Saturday, January 12th, 2008, starting at 11AM, at Cafe De La Paz - 1600 Shattuck in Berkeley." Everyone interested in progressive discourse in the media and, especially, on the airwaves of Northern California is strongly urged to attend and voice your content or discontent with the current state of KPFA as a voice of the silenced, for people of colour, for voices of dissent, as a voice for activists, for the working poor, for the marginalised.
Sunday, January 6, 2008


Dear Friends of KPFA/Pacifica,

According to the http://www.kpfa.org website, the "next Public KPFA LSB meeting will be held on Saturday, January 12th, 2008, starting at 11AM, at Cafe De La Paz - 1600 Shattuck in Berkeley." I strongly urge everyone interested in progressive discourse in the media and, especially, on the airwaves of Northern California to please attend and voice your content or discontent with the current state of KPFA as a voice of the silenced, for people of colour, for voices of dissent, as a voice for activists, for the working poor, for the marginalised.

Given all of the recent and significant events, from banning of the Labor Collective at KPFA (see http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2006/09/09/18307339.php ), to union-busting at KPFA (decertification of the Unpaid Staff Organization), to the apparent behind-closed-doors deliberation with regard to hiring embattled interim General Manager Lemlem Rijio (apparent "Concerned Listeners" accomplice, see http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2007/11/19/18462193.php) as new Permanent General Manager of KPFA, to the corrupted KPFA LSB Elections of 2007, there is much to be considered, voiced, discussed, and debated. At the last KPFA LSB meeting (12.15.07), the politically dominant section of the Board representing the new power elite at KPFA, "Concerned Listeners," attempted to seat the new LSB members (the majority of which shall represent the so-called "Concerned Listeners"), despite the fact that the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections had not yet been certified. Please urge all of your friends and family members who are interested in peace and social justice to attend this critical meeting.

Some of you may recall, as I noted previously, that I was invited to a discussion regarding the events surrounding the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections produced for tv broadcast on Comcast Channel 29. Thank you all for the enlightening discussion on Thursday evening (11.03.08). Among other things, I learned much about important labour issues with regard to KPFA/Pacifica. I hope we have more collective discussions in the future, as I know we all have much to learn from one another. If anyone has any suggestions about how we may organise public forums on the current corruption at KPFA/Pacifica, please contact me at your convenience. I, for one, maintain a commitment to engage other like-minded individuals and groups interested in listener empowerment and collective, participatory democratic governance of KPFA as a means to insuring KPFA stays true to its original and historically progressive mission of promoting voices of dissent, activism, labour/worker rights, people of colour, and other voices not heard in the mainstream.

Aside from my gratitude, I wish to express my enduring understanding of one thing: the paramount importance of legal redress for the corruption of the 2007 KPFA Local Station Board (LSB) Elections. I will never stand for, or acknowledge as legitimate, the current LSB as is, given the corrupted means by which we have arrived at this January 2007 proposed body of officers, nor any subsequent actions, motions, or amendments thereof.

However, I'm not one in favour of acting secretly, selfishly, nor recklessly. Yet, the smear campaign leveled against me has, unfortunately, given cause for many would-be allies in the struggle toward preserving and improving democratisation of KPFA/Pacifica governance to isolate me and avoid questioning me or uncovering the truth for themselves. This political isolation has created a perception among potential allies that I may have acted recklessly in my struggle for truth, transparency, and democracy at KPFA/Pacifica. Yet, I maintain, I've always sought dialogue and counsel, especially from the more experienced. Let us urge all of those varied and experienced friends of KPFA/Pacifica to come forward with consideration for the questions precipitated by the current crisis at KPFA/Pacifica.

For purposes of these specific questions, I wish to emphasise defining 'corruption' (within the context of the current entrenched management/staff power structure of corrupted individuals within KPFA/Pacifica) as being opposition to accountability, a fair and transparent participatory democratic governance structure, and ever-greater listener involvement and empowerment.

In the hopes of avoiding misunderstanding, I shall endeavor toward clarity:

1. Do we all agree that the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections were corrupted? If so, do we all agree that they must not be allowed to stand (as is)?

2. As it is my understanding that power is required for redress or accountability for the corruption of the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections, and as the ones responsible for the corruption (KPFA/Pacifica directors, officers, management, staff) have proven wholly unwilling or unable to use their power in the interest of redress or accountability for said corruption, do we all agree that utilising power through legal means must be the primary vehicle for seeking any redress or accountability for the corruption of the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections?

[Of course, I understand the need and importance of educating the listeners and general public about this corruption. Yet, I feel all mass protest and/or mobilisation in the interest of upholding participatory democratic governance at KPFA/Pacifica is futile without backing up those efforts through harnessing power through legal means to support this cause and achieve substantive accountability.]

3. The primary argument which I have heard in opposition to litigation as a solution toward redress for the corruption of the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections is that it might bankrupt KPFA or Pacifica. Would bankruptcy of KPFA or Pacifica due to litigation (beyond other current pending litigation) be an inevitability if the parties sued were the individuals apparently responsible for this corruption ("Concerned Listeners," Dan Siegel, Larry Bensky, Sherry Gendelman, Sasha Lilley, Lemlem Rijio, Warren Marr, Matthew Hallinan, Susan McDonough, John Van Eyck, et al.) rather than KPFA or Pacifica?

[Also, it is my understanding that through a much needed Temporary Restraining Order, the Court is asked to stop the Elections process to 'straighten things out based on violations of law, Bylaws or principles of equity etc.' Certainly, there have been more than sufficient 'violations of law, Bylaws or principles of equity, etc.' to warrant legal action.]

4. Another argument which I have heard in opposition to litigation as a solution toward redress for the corruption of the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections encapsulates a questionable defeatist or corrupt attitude. Two examples come from interestingly similar perspectives (see http://radiopoetics.org/blog/1), one from Tracy Rosenberg ("I-Team" slate), the other from Matthew Hallinan ("Concerned Listeners" slate). I understand Elections processes can be expensive and also understand redoing Elections can be frustrating as well, but shouldn't the individuals responsible for corrupting the Elections processes be held accountable and made to pay (legally, financially, and otherwise) rather than the public (i.e. the public trust that is KPFA/Pacifica)?

[Moreover, what is more frustrating than being forced to recognise leaders (s)elected through corrupt means? Consider the last illegitimate eight years of the Bush dynasty.]

5. Although, full legal redress for the corruption of the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections is ideal (as has been voiced by others at the previous KPFA LSB meeting {12.15.07}), including immediate emergency amendment to the Pacifica Bylaws in the interest of facilitating greater accountability and preventing future circumscription of participatory democracy at KPFA/Pacifica, shouldn't we at least seek to avoid further damages by the same individuals who have corrupted these Elections through some sort of court injunction or temporary restraining order? [This is basic, according to an article by Richard Phelps published on IndyBay at
http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2007/12/23/18468602.php?show_comments=1#18469470.]

6. In other words: given the gravity of the newly proposed KPFA LSB being quite possibly the most corrupt KPFA LSB to date*, shouldn't we, at the very least, be seeking a Temporary Restraining Order against any further imminent actions by said corrupt individuals?

[*Previously there was < apparently only> Wellstone Democratic Renewal Club (WDRC) influence within the KPFA LSB and KPFA radio station. Next, there were WDRC/"Concerned Listeners" seated on the KPFA LSB. Now, virtually the entire KPFA LSB will be comprised of WDRC/"Concerned Listeners," including, apparently, the founder of the WDRC, Matthew Hallinan. This seems to be a long and carefully planned consolidation of power. Please correct me if I'm wrong (with facts, sources, and citations, please--rather than hyperbole or hearsay). Why should any one political group, Democrats no less (long-known non-radical, anti-grass-roots, war-profiteering politicians of the elites), be allowed to consolidate such total control over KPFA/Pacifica? We must not stand for any one political party dominating KPFA/Pacifica, especially not one of the ruling class political parties.]

Given all of this increasing evidence of corruption, we must never stand for, or acknowledge as legitimate, the current KPFA LSB as is, given the corrupted means by which we have arrived at this proposed body of officers, nor any subsequent actions, motions, or amendments thereof.

Let us consider a perspective recently published by Bob English (2007 KPFA LSB Candidate) offering historical perspective on power consolidation at KPFA and an analysis on the lacking checks and balances on such consolidation of power: "So from our KPFA viewpoint, the 'main forces who brought in democracy,' didn't all uniformly sell out democracy for power but instead have moved in different directions and positions: yes, some sold out, while others gave up and moved on in heartbreak and disgust, and some of us are still hanging in there fighting for democracy and listener empowerment. That story is still being written and told (but rarely and only partly...) (quoted from Fulcrumsofchange Digest, Vol 8, Issue 4, 01.04.08)."

That story is still being written and told. Let us speak the truth as we write this story through our commitment to justice and true participatory democracy. And let us help engage one another so that we the people, the listeners, may soon be able to tell a true story of victory rather than one of regret.

In solidarity for truth, democracy, peace and social & economic justice,

Felipe Messina

postscript:
For those interested in transparency and/or contacting former KPFA General Manager and erstwhile 2007 Pacifica Executive Director Nicole Sawaya, contact information may be found here (although it may be obsolete by now; if anyone can provide a means of communication with Sawaya, a crucial missing link to understanding much of the current crisis at KPFA/Pacifica, please come forward):

New KPFA General Manager? Audio Linked by Virginia Browning (Monday Nov 19th, 2007 2:17 PM )
http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2007/11/19/18462193.php

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by KPFA Shrink
( sammieandchas@yahoolcom ) Monday Jan 7th, 2008 1:44 AM
Dahlink, he needs a doctor quiwk. There were problems, true. Serious problems. But to hear the weird distortions from this total newbie to KPFA (and who got you involved in this exactly?) that is a bit much. P l e a s e, the man forced himself into an on air studio and announced that he was there to host the program and needed to be forcible removed. Steve, whatever are you thinking, man.
by Felipe Messina
( messinamorrissey [at] gmail.com ) Monday Jan 7th, 2008 9:27 PM
Monday, January 7, 2008

I would like to extend thanks to the first two responses to the above assertion in favour of nullifying the corrupted 2007 KPFA LSB Elections.

(1) KPFA Shrink
Monday, January 7, 2008 [NO REPLY YET --f.m.]

Dear KPFA Shrink,

You or someone using your e-mail address (sammieandchas@yahoolcom) wrote:

"Dahlink, he needs a doctor quiwk. There were problems, true. Serious problems. But to hear the weird distortions from this total newbie to KPFA (and who got you involved in this exactly?) that is a bit much. P l e a s e, the man forced himself into an on air studio and announced that he was there to host the program and needed to be forcible removed. Steve, whatever are you thinking, man."
http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2008/01/06/18470583.php?show_comments=1#18470669

Thank you for your consideration and feedback. I am interested in discussing further some of your perceptions with regard to the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections. You make some interesting insinuations as well as some misguided assertions, particularly the penultimate sentence. The entire morning at KPFA (11.10.07) is documented on videocamera footage. I would appreciate any dialogue you could facilitate. If I have your correct e-mail address, please respond in kind. If this message finds you in error, please accept my humble apologies.

Sincerely,

Felipe Messina, KPFA listener-member

(2) Richard Phelps
In a message dated 1/6/2008 8:40:50 P.M. Pacific Standard Time, messinamorrissey [at] gmail.com writes:

"Now, virtually the entire LSB will be comprised of WDRC/"Concerned Listeners,"

This is grossly incorrect. The CL and their allies will probably have a small (1-2), 14-11 or 13-12 vote majority and who knows how tight the new CL members will be once they see exactly what goes on at the station behind the mic and on the LSB. They have had defections this year and hopefully more in the future.

Richard Phelps
Attorney/Mediator PhelpsMediation.com
[address intentionally omitted]
[address intentionally omitted]
[contact information intentionally omitted]
++++++++++
Monday, January 7, 2008

Mr. Richard Phelps,

Thank you very much for your swift correction. I failed to consider the entire body of Local Station Board members, given my concern with the "Concerned Listeners" continuing their anti-listener involvement, anti-worker, anti-democratic motions and actions. I was only thinking of the majority of "Concerned Listeners" members among those supposedly elected in 2007: "Concerned Listeners" -- Dianne Enriquez, Sherry Gendelman, Matthew Hallinan, Warren Mar, Susan McDonough; "I-Team" -- Chandra Hauptman, Tracy Rosenberg; "People's Radio" -- Richard Phelps; "Voices For Justice" -- Sureya Sayadi. Also, thanks for your analysis of the LSB voting trends. I appreciate that. Information and dialogue can be difficult to come by.

What is your view of the logistical support and/or political connections between the Wellstone Democratic Renewal Club (WDRC) and the "Concerned Listeners"? At the last LSB meeting (12.15.07), among those who went up to bat for the "Concerned Listeners" and forcing the corrupted Elections was one "Nancy Friedman." Similarly, there is a "Nancy Friedman" within the WDRC; she's Chair of 3 of the total 11 committees: "FUNdraising Committee," "Health Care Committee," and the "Speakers Bureau" committee.

Lastly, do you have any objection to my publishing your correction of my writing online?


In solidarity for truth, democracy, peace and social & economic justice,

Felipe Messina, KPFA listener-member

postscript:
I would be very grateful if you allowed me an interview at your convenience. I am interested in your prespectives on the 2007 KPFA LSB Elections. I only had brief opportunity to dialogue with a few folks at the 12.15.07 LSB meeting (Tracy Rosenberg, for example, only briefly). She allowed me her e-mail, I sent her a few questions, but she's not replied. I understand you're busy, but I'd be willing to wait.
++++++++++
In a message dated 1/7/2008 7:56:19 P.M. Pacific Standard Time, messinamorrissey [at] gmail.com writes:
"Lastly, do you have any objection to my publishing your correction of my writing online?"

no.

Richard Phelps
Attorney/Mediator PhelpsMediation.com
[address intentionally omitted]
[address intentionally omitted]
[contact information intentionally omitted]
++++++++++
Thanks. I just finished reading the latest "Fulcrums" wherein you published the correction. Cheers, man. --F.
by Transparency
Saturday Jan 19th, 2008 8:01 PM
For those interested in transparency and/or contacting former KPFA General Manager and erstwhile 2007 Pacifica Executive Director Nicole Sawaya, contact information may be found here (although it may be obsolete by now; if anyone can provide a means of communication with Sawaya, a crucial missing link to understanding much of the current crisis at KPFA/Pacifica, please come forward):