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Video-UCB Striker/Organizer On Pacifica/KPFA And Coverage Of UC Strike Struggle
by Labor Video Project
Thursday Nov 19th, 2009 2:15 AM
Despite the fact that KPFA is located in Berkeley where a mass strike movement is developing it has been unable to cover the mass rallies live and even eliminated a segment on the strike which was on Democracy Now that played on November 17, 2009 and discussed the planned UCB strike on November 18, 2009. One strike activist is angry that KFPA and Pacifica have refused to properly cover this critical struggle.
UCB Striker/Organizer On Pacifica/KPFA And Coverage Of UC Strike Struggle

On November 18, 2009 at a mass rally and strike by students, faculty and union staff on the UCB campus MIchael Cohen, UAW lecturer at UCB and co-chair of the Solidarity Alliance talks about the problems with coverage of their struggle on KPFA and Pacifica.Despite KPFA being located in Berkeley it has been unable to give live coverage of the mass strike rallies and even edited a Democracy Now program that was covering the issues on the strike to do fundraising for the station.

Produced by
Labor Video Project
P.O. Box 720027
San Francisco, CA 94172

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by Robert Knight
Thursday Nov 19th, 2009 9:15 AM
As a longtime admirer of the Labor Video Project, as well as KPFA's radical heritage, I am compelled to note that the UC Berkeley strike was in fact covered in great detail (on the day it happened, Wednesday, November 18) by KPFA's investigative news program "Flashpoints," with Dennis Bernstein and Nora Barrows-Friedman, by way of a highly detailed and informative breaking documentary report by our producer Eric Klein.

Audio is available at:

I am obviously in no position to speak for KPFA management, but a clarification may be useful:

Virtually all regular Pacifica programming nationwide (including Democracy Now) was pre-empted or specially re-focused on Monday and Tuesday November 16-17, for an important nationally-coordinated, multi-station fund-drive and showcase for Pacifica's Radio Archives.

It was to preserve and extend the Pacifica network and its unique archives -- not "the station."

Interestingly, the PRA special to fund Pacifica's audio history legacy also enabled listeners to endow schools and colleges (like UCB, for example) with historic audio (like our contemporaneous strike coverage, for example). Details of the national "Pacifica Campus Campaign" at:

Meanwhile, looking forward to more great LVP work.


Robert Knight

"The Knight Report"

Flashpoints Contributing Producer

There was no LIVE coverage of the UC Strike on KPFA on November 18, 2009, although the station is 1 block from the UC Berkeley campus. THERE SHOULD HAVE BEEN ROUND THE CLOCK LIVE COVERAGE OF THE UC WORKER/STUDENT STRIKE ON ALL CAMPUSES ON KPFA AND KPFK. They could have had hourly updates. They certainly should have interviewed workers on the picketline all day long as it is the workers at the University that make it possible. The education issue is fundamental to any society and certainly to an industrialized society. The capitalist class is trying to make this country a low wage dump instead of an advanced industrialized country.

On November 18, at 4 p.m., the ghetto youth program, Hard Knock Radio, had interviews with mostly students, and the interviewer seemed very concerned that the students participate in electing a new governor as it is the governor who appoints the regents, when the focus should be on labor organizing for a statewide strike of all state workers to force the capitalist class to abolish fees, abolish layoffs, abolish unpaid days (furloughs), and abolish the Board of Regents, putting UC under the control of the State Board of Education, the same as the California State University system and community colleges are.

On November 18, at 5 p.m., Flashpoints had a segment interviewing students. It did not have a labor organizing focus at all.

On November 18 at 6 p.m., the KPFA evening news covered the strike as a news segment.

On November 19, neither Hard Knock Radio nor Flashpoints covered the strike at all. The 6 p.m. evening news covered it AND WE HEARD THAT 300 STUDENTS CONTINUE TO SIT IN AT UCLA SO THAT THE REGENTS CANNOT LEAVE.

Unlike KPFA, the UC Berkeley student newspaper, had a daily blog, telling us the actions of the worker strike and the student strike at UC Berkeley.
Here are the links to November 18 live blog:

And the November 19 live blog:

On November 19, UCLA's student newspaper, the Daily Bruin, has a daily blog, which you can find at:

IT IS THE LABOR STRIKE THAT IS THE BASIS OF THIS WHOLE STRIKE AND ONLY THE WORKINGCLASS CAN MAKE ANY CHANGE AS ONLY LABOR HAS ECONOMIC STRENGTH. The students can only protest. Already, because so many janitors have been fired so that football coaches can make $300,000 a year and management can make $500,000 a year plus $10,000 a month for an apartment (UC Pres Yudolf), the garbage is picked up once a week, creating a health crisis. THE STATE HEALTH DEPARTMENT SHOULD CLOSE ALL CAMPUSES THAT DO NOT HAVE ENOUGH JANITORS TO PICK UP THE GARBAGE AND CLEAN THE BATHROOMS AND ALL OTHER FACILITIES EVERY SINGLE DAY. I guarantee you the Regents will suddenly free the reserve money to pay for UC. If not, then this horrifying scene will finally be closed. CAN YOU IMAGINE TRYING TO LEARN IN A FILTHY DIRTY SCHOOL, and they have the nerve to call this a world class university?

In case you do not understand the labor basis, here is UPTE's website, the university employees who have yet to get a signed contract:
by Zachary RunningWolf
(zacharyrunningwolf [at] Thursday Nov 19th, 2009 9:05 PM
I'm a veteran of the longest urban Tree-sit in US history that occurred in the City of Berkeley. Th home of KKKPFA which would consistently black us out especially when we were being attacked. It got so bad that we tree sat KKKPFA fund drive and dropped a banner that read "KKKPFA, Listener sponsored - KKKorparate controlled", there after 75 empoloyees voted no confidence.