Back of the Book — October 27, 2012

Well, we thought that we'd be preempted for this program, as Uncle Sidney was last Saturday morning. But the final week of this 'thon was up in the air, there was nothing posted anywhere about what was happening with it. That was because the folks in charge didn't know what was going to happen for the final week. We didn't know until Thursday afternoon that we were on this morning! So we'll do a radio program, try to raise some money, and just see what happens with it all. Oh yeah, we'll probably mention Halloween and the impending storm. I do plan to update this Web page as soon as I can manage.

Did you know that I've got a brief synopsis of some of the WBAI LSB meetings? Well, I do, and I've recently updated all of that.

The next regular WBAI LSB meeting will be held on Wednesday, November 14th, 2012, at a location to be announced.

An LSB meeting was called for October 10, 2012, at 7:00 PM at Alwan-for-the-Arts, 16 Beaver Street, 4th floor, in downtown Manhattan. However a quorum never appeared and at 8:00 PM, a full hour after the official starting time for the meeting and with members starting to leave in frustration, the Chair cancelled the meeting with the consensus of the members assembled.

At a previous meeting the WBAI LSB voted to hold its meetings on the second Wednesday of every month and/or the last Thursday of that month, subject to change by the LSB, which gives us the following schedule:

All of these meetings are set to begin at 7:00 PM.

WBAI has a program schedule up on its newly revamped Web site. The site has gotten many of the individual program pages together to provide links and such, so check it out.

WBAI has an official Web stream of what's on the air at any time! You can go here and pick which type of stream you want! If this stream isn't working let me know. And you can see the status of the streams at any time by clicking here. The stream was working at 01:03 this morning. The station has a Flash stream here, make sure you enable Javascript so it can work for you.

New WBAI stream! WBAI has put up an experimental stream for the Apple iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. This is a brand new, experimental stream. So if you have one of those devices you might try the link out. And let us know how it works for you one way or the other. That way the folks implementing it can iron out any kinks in the system.

WBAI is archiving the programs! Just go here and you'll be able to listen to this program any time for the next couple of months. You may need to scroll up one line to see the audio archive. Let me know if you find this feature useful.

If you want to listen to any part of the WBAI archive click here to go right to the archives. When you first go to the Web page you'll only see the WBAI programs for the past 7 days. If you want to see older programs you can click on one of the “See ALL Shows” buttons. Or to see only the two shows in this time slot click here.

Back of the Book is one of the programs that you can download, as well as listen to on line.

In the table on the archive Web page Back of the Book and Saturday Morning With the Radio On are both in the “Show” column. The “Date and Category” column shows the date of the program. After the program I go in and write the details of the program and say which program it is. Of course I'd recommend that you just listen to both programs in this time slot!

In the Summer of 2009, there was a Pacifica National Board meeting held in New York. Here's the Web page I did about this PNB meeting and the amazing things that went on at it.

And the PNB has also met in Houston from Friday October 9th, through Sunday October 11th, 2009. The official audio archive of that meeting is here. It was not disrupted as the New York meeting was, although some of the same miscreants got out there to say stupid things.

The Pacifica National Board (PNB) met in Manhattan the weekend of October 1-3, 2010. The audio has been posted for the first day of the meeting, the second day of the meeting and the third day of the meeting.

PNB Chair Summer Reese has been appointed interim Executive Director of the Pacifica foundation, which owns WBAI. Press relese here.

The 2012, Pacifica election cycle has begun! Want find out more about it? Click here.

UPDATE: The latest word is that the ballots will be mailed out on November 6, 2012.


old telephone
Give Us A Call at 1-212-209-2950

We are pitching on this radio program! If you can please call 1-212-209-2950 during the radio program and pledge some amount of money to help keep Back of the Book on WBAI and help keep WBAI on the air.

If you want to pledge to the program via the Web it's best to do so while we're on the air, you need to go here and pick the amount you want to donate, then click on “Add to cart,” and then be sure to pick Back of the Book as the favorite show from the drop down menu. Otherwise your pledge won't be counted towards the program.

I should also point out that WBAI always needs help answering the phones. In order to answer the phones you'll have to get into the building. The building Management requires that you get your name added to a list so you can enter 120 Wall St. So if you want to volunteer to answer phones for this 'thon you should call the WBAI switchboard at 1-212-209-2800 during business hours and let the folks in charge know you want to volunteer so they can put your name on the list. We always need more folks to answer the phones so if you want to volunteer to answer the phones for another program during this 'thon the above procedure is the way to do it.

Scientists using the HARPS instrument on the 3.6-meter telescope at the European Southern Observatory’s (ESO) La Silla Observatory in Chile have announced the discovery of a planet orbiting the nearby star Alpha Centauri B.

The Alpha Centauri system is a double, or maybe a triple, star system. It's definitely composed of the Stars Alpha Centauri A and Alpha Centauri B, it may also include the small, red dwarf star Proxima Centauri which, while quite distant from the two large, brighter stars of the Alpha Centauri system is in fact the closest star to the Solar System.

The newly discovered planet, designated Alpha Centauri Bb, orbits Alpha Centauri B every 3.2 days. The planet is a little larger than the Earth. Alpha Centauri B is a little smaller and only about half as bright as the Sun.

Finding a planet in the closest star system to the Earth is a big deal, especially for readers of science fiction. All sorts of books and TV series have featured planets, usually inhabited, in this star system, and now there really is one.

But this planet is not going to be inhabited. Alpha Centauri Bb is only about 3.7 million miles from its star, and it's going to be very hot on the planet's surface, there will also be a lot of radiation pouring onto the planet.

There exists the possibility that there may be other planets, possibly ones that could harbor life, in that Alpha Centauri system.

There had been a theoretical debate going back to the 19th Century as to whether or not a planet could even exist in a binary star system. That debate was settled in 2000, when a planet was observed in another binary star system.


Storm warning flag
Oh, A Storm's Coming

We plan on talking about the big Storm that's predicted to hit the area on Monday and Tuesday. It's supposed to be Hurricane Sandy merging with a cool, low pressure zone coming out of Canada and augmented by a high pressure zone located in just the right position out in the atlantic Ocean to feed more wind and energy into it. The polar Jet Stream is also playing a role in this scenario.

Set of Jack O'Lanterns

Well, we'll be pitching on this program, but we also plan to make it a sort of Halloween program. Pickles of the North was off making Jack O'Lanterns with some friends this past week. Yeah, we'll see how far we get with all of this.

There are a lot of issues that are considered hazardous to talk about on the air at WBAI, even though the gag rule was lifted in 2002. However, there is the Internet! There are mailing lists which you can subscribe to and Web based message boards devoted to WBAI and Pacifica issues. Many controversial WBAI/Pacifica issues are discussed on these lists.

One popular list the “NewPacifica” mailing list. Founded October 31, 2000, this list is sometimes lively and as of mid-2011, has 687 subscribers coast to coast.

Being lively, of course, it sometimes also gets a bit nasty. All sorts of things are happening on this list and official announcements are frequently posted there.

You can look at the NewPacifica list here, and you can join the list from that Web page too. If you subscribe to the “NewPacifica” mailing list you will receive, via E-mail, all of the messages which are sent to that list.

There is the option to receive a “digest” version of the list, which means that a bunch of messages are bundled into one E-mail and sent to you at regular intervals, this cuts down on the number of E-mails you get from the list. You will also be able to send messages to the list.

This list also has a Web based interface where you can read messages and from which you can post your own messages.

There is also the more WBAI specific “Goodlight” Web based message board. It is sometimes referred to on Back of the Book as “the bleepin' blue board,” owing to the blue background used on its Web pages. This one has many people posting anonymously and there's also an ancillary “WBAI people” board that's just totally out of hand. UPDATE: The bleepin' blue board has had to add a step for folks to get onto it because it's under attack by spambots. When you click on the above link you may be asked for a username and password. Type in Username: poster Password: enternow

When the computer in Master Control is working we sometimes have live interaction with people posting on the “Goodlight Board” during the program.

Our very own Uncle Sidney Smith, whose program Saturday Morning With the Radio On alternates with us, has a blog these days. You can reach his blog here.

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

You can also send me E-mail.

WBAI related links

WBAI Listeners' Web page

WBAI Management's official Web site

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The contents of this Web page are copyright © 2012, R. Paul Martin.