Web links related to the Back of the Book program of April 15, 2002

Well, it's Sunday afternoon 4/28/2002 16:53:19 and this page is finally done. I had some difficult family matters to work out this fortnight and so and that really stopped me from updating this page earlier. On this program we had some sad news and some more ordinary stuff that we covered. I read mail on this program about last fortnight's program. So I'm declaring this page finished at last and will now start on the next one! As usual different parts of this page are written at different times and so tenses and references to the future, which is now the past, will be seen.

Here is the latest on the saga of Pacifica. I have updated that page with stuff about the recent meeting of the interim Pacifica National Board in Los Angeles, CA, along with a couple of other items.

Here's what I was saying about the WBAI part of the overall crisis in August. I seriously need to update this.

I'm very glad to note that at WBAI the gag rule is dead, for now.

As we move into the next phase of the Pacifica Crisis some listeners are more convinced than ever that only open elections will provide a long range cure for the Pacifica Crisis. Here's an election proposal.

North American Shirley
19?? - 2002

A couple of days after the last program I received an E-mail from North American Shirley's friend Karl informing me that “North American Shirley went to heaven around 7:30 AM on Monday, April 1st.” Of course I never met her, and I don't even know her real name, but she'd been writing to me for years and was a regular listener. I was saddened when I received Karl's confirmation of this news. Probably odd for a producer to feel that way about the death of a listener, probably unprofessional, but that's the way I feel. I'll miss North American Shirley's E-mails, and I'll miss knowing that she's a constant, long time listener. Of course I do not believe in an afterlife, but I'm glad that I was able to give North American Shirley some laughs and some interesting things to listen to during her final years.

Our colleagues from Off the Hook now have both a RealAudio streaming web cast operating, and a new MP3 stream both of which were working at about 11:10 PM last night. The MP3 feed is now the preferred feed.

The WBAI Local Advisory Board and the interim Pacifica National Board have gotten together to give themselves a whole lot of say about the next General manager of WBAI. Back in January the iPNB said it was going to recognize the Union Contract at WBAI as it applied to Unpaid Staff. Well, Unpaid Staff, who produce most of the programs you hear on WBAI, are supposed to make up one third of the General Manager Search Committee, according to that Contract. Now we'll make up only one eighth of that committee, and we won't have time to run a proper election for our representatives. In the end, it seems to be about the faction currently in power staying in power.

It was just twodollar_coin.gif - 15587 Bytes years ago that I talked on the program about the then new “Golden Dollar” coin that was coming out. There were commercials on TV, featuring a really creepy looking computer graphics image of George Washington, with the face being the image from the $1 bill, talking about how this was a great idea and how useful it would be.

Well, the United States Mint has ceased production of the “Golden Dollar” coins. They're just not catching on, so with more than a 3½ year supply already in storage the Mint has suspended all but numismatic production for the rest of this year, at least. Of course you get them in change from the damned MetroCard machines all the time, so some of them are in circulation. I know that I get rid of them pretty fast. They're much heavier than a dollar bill, and I think that makes people want to get rid of them or avoid getting them in the first place.

Some astronomers think they've found a new kind of matter in some very dense stars. These stars are so dense that it's theorized that they are not made of neutrons, as neutron stars are, but of loose quarks! We can only get quarks to manifest themselves by using our most powerful colliders, and then we only get a few. But here's a star full of them.

Three years ago a coneist in Michigan was arrested for using “bad language” in public. I'm glad to report that a judge has dismissed the case against him. Score one for the First Amendment, goddamn it!

But the First Amendment is struggling against the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. A young Russian guy named Sklyarov was arrested at a hackers' convention in Las Vegas last year on charges of making something that would break copy protection codes. He worked for a company in Russia! Currently a motion to dismiss the case against him is before a judge and the hearing is later today.

As it turns out, Judge Ronald M. Whyte did not rule on these motions on April 15. He may do so at another hearing set for May 6.

The Colorado Supreme Court has ruled that a bookstore does not have to turn over its sales records to the cops. Some dimwit judges in a lower court had ruled that the bookstore had to surrender its records, so this unanimous ruling overturns that decision. The cops had busted a meth lab in a trailer occupied by several people. Along with the drug lab they found two books on the subject of building and operating such a setup. Outside the trailer the cops found an envelope from the bookstore in question. So they want to go through all of the records of all of the sales of the bookstore to see if they can find evidence that one of the inhabitants of the trailer bought the books they found. Jeez, I've got books on the Boer War, World War I and World War II. I hope the cops don't accuse me of starting one of those!

And as if the attempts by stupid legislators and others to shut down or cripple the Internet weren't enough two big, greedy companies are trying to put what amounts to a toll gate on it!

IBM and Microsoft are refusing to allow protocols they're proposing for the future World Wide Web, which will be more sophisticated than the Web you're using right now, to be used on a royalty free basis. Hewlett-Packard has withdrawn its support for thier scheme, but the two juggernauts appear to be ready to force their way onto the Internet in a way that would allow them to reap profits from every transaction, including just looking at Web pages, that occurs.

Looks like there's more than one way to curb free speech.

We got through some of the mail, and all of the E-mail on this program. Yes, this means that there is now a tiny backlog again, but it's all in snail mail and I'm sure I'll get through it soon.

In the snail mail portion of the program I read something from a listener signing himself as “Larry” in which he said that scientists had found that Neanderthals had red hair. I've looked around about this and it turns out that the original researchers don't say this at all. Dr. Rosalind Harding, the Oxford member of the research team that was investigating the gene for red hair, denies that her team ever said the gene originated in Homo neanderthalensis. She said, “We have never stated in our research that this gene is Neanderthal, but at the moment I cannot statistically prove that it isn't which is why others have drawn these conclusions.” The article I've quoted from is here. Of course some wacky tabloids and Web sites have picked up on this and are spreading the disinformation that Larry quoted. Unfortunately, the wacky tabloids and Web sites greatly outnumber the truthful ones and they get a lot more visibility.

Our first E-mail is from Fernando and is one we'd previously skipped.

Subject: The 2001-02 TV Season
Date: Fri, 15 Mar 2002 15:43:57 -0800 (PST)
From: Fernando
To: rpm@glib.com

Dear R.

I have written to you before. Thank you. With the end of the 2001-2002 television season a mere two months away, I felt it was time for some reflection. Do you like Ozzy Osbourne? Overall, it has been a very lackluster season. Do you agree with me? Enterprise is a pale, uneven fix for us Star Trek junkies and I am a real big Trekker. I have looked at Chekov twice and once he winked at me. In general, it seems that this season for every one “Smallville” (which I love) there have been a half dozen “Emerils” and “Inside Schwartzes.”

The one thriving oasis of quality in this barren wasteland is MTV's The Osbournes. Do you watch it, Martin? I do. It is brilliant. I know you are no fan of reality TV shows, but The Osbournes is GREAT television. Like their reality- TV pioneer, The Real World, The Osbournes involves TV cameras recording every real life, unscripted move made by a real family which in this case happens to be the real life family of Heavy Metal rock star, Ozzy Osbourne. Ozzy rocks! If you recll, Ozzy once gained notoriety for biting off the head of a bat and supposedly seducing a teenager to suicide with the lyrics of his songs. As seen on The Osbournes, however, his home life is rather normal and even somewhat conservative in spite of the expected rock-and-roll trappings like the tatoos and bizarre hair styles. Ozzy's wife, Sharon, is a very normal mom but she is profane. Ozzy himself is reminiscent of the Reverend Jim character from the classic TV sitcom “Taxi.” A third of what he says is incoherent. Another third is bleeped. The remaining third, however, is hilarious. I love it when he says, “What's the deal, Man?”

There are aspects of the show that do offend me. Ozzy is covered in tatoos and in next week's episode his daughter gets one. Everyone curses far too much and no effort is made to curb the childrens' crude speech. I can, however, accept these elements within the context of the show. Ozzy has done a lot of drugs and on VH1's Behind The Music, I learned he tried to kill Mrs. Osbourne once.

My mother hates that I watch this show because she thinks that Ozzy is on drugs and Satanic, but I tell her to get out of my face. I'm a grown man, R. I can watch what I want. I have my OWN TV in my own room now. R, take a tip from your Uncle Fernando, Paul, and catch The Osbournes. It is on Tuesday nights at 10:30 and it is repeated often throughout the week. It is funny, R. Ozzy rocks! Why doesn't MTV show nudity?

On another note, this may be my imagination, but I don't think Pickles Of The North likes me. I have noticed that if she can take a shot at me, she will. She has often dissuaded you from reading my letters and has made noises when you mention me. Like Ozzy would say, “What's the deal, Man?”

Rock on,
Florham Park, NJ

As we've previously pointed out, Fernando send us a LOT of mail, and much of it is quite long. After a while I started limiting the amount of Fernando mail because I think others should get a shot at having their missives read on the air. Of course I've said this many times already. If Fernando is really listening he'd know this!

I do not have cable and so do not watch the Osbornes. Most TV is crap anyway. But it's good that Fernando now finally has his own TV set, he is 32 years old.

Here's a series of E-mails, short ones, from another listener.

Subject: joke webpage and .mp3 files of your shows.
Date: Mon, 1 Apr 2002 17:17:48 +0900
From: "Alan"
To: rpm@glib.com

r. paul you just read an email i sent to you and you did not give our my personal webpage, that is good, i think i am not ready to have the werld and BAI guys and gals listing get to my homepage, yet. you CAN see that joke anytime, url is below.

i said in my email that if you go to my homepage you will see an April 1st. Fools Day joke, and i will only have it up for that day.

well, here it is, for all the time, this is where i found it.

Check dis out... http://www.mamselle.ca/error.html

alan thanks again not reading my [....] webpage on the air/net. we don't need them stinkin doub yous.

you want to make copies of your shows, easy.

just get freeamp, it is free. get the link to listen to WBAI, this one is good to use,

there are others, just go to to www.2600.com and save a link to your harddive, save it with .txt at the end of the name, then open it with notepage or other text viewer, look to see the url, and use that for RealAudio or WMP or freeamp.

put that url into the FILES, URL menu, low left of freeamp.

and make sure you have the streaming preferences clicked on, to have freeamp make a .mp3 file of what ever it is listing to that url.

the sound 16k per second and the mp3 files sound good. your show will turn out to be about a 13Mb. file.

there is another way, get Total Recorder and reg. it and then just have RealAudio or Windows Media Player play WBAI, if you have Total Recorder set up right, you can have it make 16k or up to 64k per sec. .mp3 files of the audio. that at 64k sounds better, but not that much, and the total file size is bigger, a one hour show makes about a 27Mb. file.

but that is not a big deal, just burn the files to a CD. you can get 2-3 days of ALL of WBAI rec. to 64k per sec .mp3 files one on CD. a CD is only 50 cents or less.


Subject: Fw: Health ministry plans to ban 'magic mushrooms'
Date: Mon, 1 Apr 2002 17:19:29 +0900
From: "Alan"
To: rpm@glib.com

r. paul i sent this last week to pickles, but i see that she did not forward it to you, so i am doing that now,

good show you just had on April 1.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Alan"
To: <pickles@doddersville.com>
Sent: Monday, March 18, 2002 4:29 PM
Subject: Health ministry plans to ban 'magic mushrooms'

> pickles and r.paul
> but you can still buy, beer from a vending machine,
> all over Japan.
> alan
> http://www.japantimes.com/cgi-bin/getarticle.pl5?nn20020318a5.htm
> ....

I've clipped the above E-mail because the link given above goes to the article, and publishing the entire article from Alan's E-mail would violate copyright law.

In this next E-mail Alan quotes an URL that doesn't work, so I've left that out. We are not both on line when we're on the air, except in terms of the WBAI stream. And here I've been thinking that people have gotten my E-mail address from my having announced it on the air.

Subject: Fw: keep adding to your find history and info webpage.
Date: Mon, 1 Apr 2002 17:20:20 +0900
From: "Alan"
To: rpm@glib.com

i guess pickles did not forware this to you, so i am now,


----- Original Message -----
From: "Alan"
To: pickles@doddersville.com
Sent: Monday, March 18, 2002 4:33 PM
Subject: keep adding to your find history and info webpage.

> oh, pickles north and r.p
> i forgot to tell how i got your email address,
> i used this,

[Broken URL removed]

> i guess , you are online now when you both do the
> show?
> keep adding to your find history and info webpage.
> alan

Our next correspondent comes up with the name of a movie I was blanking on. And this is neither Susan from Long Island nor Susan Not From Long Island.

Subject: "Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid"
Date: Mon, 1 Apr 2002 04:25:30 -0500
From: Susan
To: rpm@glib.com

April 1, 2002

The movie you were describing tonight is called “Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid,” (1948) starring William Powell and Ann Blyth. Unsuspecting middle-aged Powell comes across lovely mermaid while fishing.

I saw this movie on WLIW Channel 21 quite a few years back, before I turned 50, and it's certainly a movie I've recommended that others see before they hit the big five oh. At least it gives some insight into how the age of 50 was viewed in the middle of the 20th Century.

Subject: comments/questions to RPaul
Date: Mon, 1 Apr 2002 21:32:11 -0500
From: rich1203
To: rpm@glib.com

Dear R

and Pickles, i caught your last show {easter w/end}at first i thought you would take a lot of time to go on about how meaningless this stuff was to you, but to your credit you were not mean spirited about it , foaming at the mouth like some other athiest do. When you mentioned the words ... “superstitious nonsense” in context to the fighting in the middle east it made one think, R Paul may have a point. Anyway R you mentioned that you went to catholic school as a young boy, were the seeds of your discontent with religion planted there ? if not, at what point in your life did you realise this was how you felt ? and on that matter whats your theory on the birth of the universe and life as we know it .your talks on cosmology and related topics always intrigue me ....as usual will be looking foward to your next broadcast ........take care .

I'm sure that my insights into organized superstition were greatly influenced by my Catholic school experiences. I dropped all willing connections to superstition when I was 20. As for the birth of the universe, I go with the scientific discoveries that have been made for the past few centuries. That's why the program pages on this Web site have so many references to these discoveries.

Subject: glib.com
Date: Fri, 05 Apr 2002 02:26:55 -0500
From: "W A S S E R C R A T S"
To: rpm@glib.com

Wow, it sounds like you may have already caught up with your backlog of mail. Sorry I missed that show if you did.

I have a question about R. Paul Martin, the Webmaster. There are some banner ad companies out there that only require about 100 hits a day before they will find paying advertisers for your site. I'm thinking of using one for my site, http://polisource.com . Do you get enough hits for that?

By the way, the two times before the last when I went to glib.com, those options down the left side of the screen weren't there. It's back now though. This occured at approximately 2:19 am, Friday morning.

We did indeed catch up with the mail on the April 1, program.

As for hits, I get a whole lot more than 100 “hits” per day. If you're talking about visitors, I get more than 100 of those a day also. But I'm not putting banner ads on my site. I'm into the communication rather than an attempt to get pennies per day from some banner ad outfit that I may not trust in the first place.

As for the options on the left side of the screen, if the site is up, and that's the case 99+% of the time, then that navigation frame should show up. Some browsers have problems with frames, and the front page is the only one I use frames on. But the Web is a prrety wild place and things can go wrong. Next time try reloading the page if you don't get the navigation frame on the left.

There are a lot of issues that we can't talk about on the air at WBAI. But there is an Internet list called “Free Pacifica!” which you can subscribe to, and these issues are discussed there. If you subscribe to it you will receive, via E-mail, all of the messages which are sent to that list. You will also be able to send messages to the list.

If you want to subscribe to the “Free Pacifica!” list just click on this link and follow the instructions, and you'll be subscribed. Could open your eyes a little bit.

The above list has occasionally produced a high volume of E-mail because of the attention that these issues have drawn. If you would prefer to subscribe to a low volume list that only provides announcements of events related to these issues then subscribe to the FreePac mailing list.

Another list that's sprung up is the “NewPacifica” mailing list. This one is very lively and currently includes over 400 subscribers coast to coast. Being lively, of course, it sometimes also gets a bit nasty. All sorts of things are happening on this list. With that warning in mind, you can look at the NewPacifica list here, and you can join the list from that Web page too, although you'll have to deal with Yahoo! to do so.

There is also the more WBAI specific “Goodlight” Web based message board. This one has a great many people posting anonymously and there's also an ancillary board that's just totally out of hand.

The “Goodlight” Web based message board has expanded to cover all Pacifica stations.

My voice mail number at WBAI is 212-209-2996. Leave a message.

You can also send me E-mail.

WBAI related links

Free Pacifica Web site

WBAI Listeners' Web page

WBAI Management's official Web site

Back to the Back of the Book page

Back to my home page.

The contents of this Web page and subsequent Web pages on this site are copyright © 2002, R. Paul Martin