Back of the Book — January 16, 2021

It's Monday, January 25, 2021, 18:50 and this Web page is finished. I've added some parts and I've replaced the one spinning Earth graphic with one that does not require a huge number of citations of authors. The original top of this page follows the arrow. We talked about these historical times. The president of the United States has been impeached for a second time. Insurrection is a topic all over the country, more such trouble as we saw on January 6th, maybe be in store. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to hit the United States particularly hard. Meanwhile we did do one science-related topic, and Pickles of the North read a piece that was designed to get us away from the death and mayhem we've had so much of lately.

You can now listen to this program on the official WBAI Archive.

Did you know that I've got a brief synopsis of some of the WBAI LSB meetings?

I have also posted a whole lot of the minutes of the Pacifica National Finance Committee on this Web site. I'm a member of that committee because I'm the WBAI LSB Treasurer.

The next WBAI LSB meeting is scheduled to be held on Wednesday, February 10, 2021, it will probably be held as a teleconference meeting, as the 10 previous public meetings were because of the pandemic.

The WBAI LSB met on Wednesday, January 13, 2021.

We held elections for Director, which will actually be held on-line. The election for Vice-Chair went on, virtually, later last month and Dee Dee Halleck is the new Vice-Chair of the WBAI LSB. The LSB meeting had an executive session attached to it. I maintained during the meeting and after it that this was a violation of the rules laid down in the Communications Act. Nothing that was actually confidential was discussed. It'll be interesting to see what the legally required report out says. That's required to be posted by January 27.

Before the meeting I had put out a written Treasurer's Report for all to read.

Some years ago the WBAI LSB voted to hold its regular meetings on the second Wednesday of every 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 Web site. The site has gotten many of the individual program pages together to provide links and such, so check it out.

Here is WBAI's current Internet stream. We can no longer tell if the stream is working without testing every possible stream. Good luck.

WBAI is archiving the programs! WBAI has permanently switched to yet another new archive Web page! This one is more baffling than the previous one. For some time I was unable to post archive blurbs, then I could, and then I couldn't again. You can take a look at it and see if I've been able to post anything on it lately. There are still some limitations, but I am assured that I can plug in the archive blurbs that were lost in the latest upgrade.

This is a link to the latest version of the official WBAI archive. The archiving software appears to have been at least partially fixed. To get to the archive of this program you can use the usual method: you'll have to click on the drop-down menu, which says Display, and find Back of the Book on that menu. We're pretty early in the list, so it shouldn't be too difficult. Once you find the program name click GO and you'll see only this Back of the Book program. Management has fixed some problems that we'd been having with the archives.

For programs before March 23, 2019, we're all out of luck. The changes that took place once WBAI Management took control of the WBAI archives seems to have wiped out all access to anything before that date in March. You'll have to click on the same drop-down menu as above, which says Display, and find Specify Date, it's the second choice from the top. You are then given a little pop-up calendar and you can choose the date of the program there. Then click GO and you'll see a list of programs that aired on that date. For those previous programs you can get the audio, but nothing else, since I can't post anything to those pages anymore. Yeah, it looks like they'll have some alternating program's name prominently there, but if you have the right date it'll be our program. Good luck.

Since the General Manager has banned Sidney Smith from WBAI he's not alternating with us on the air. There is another program in the alternate week's time slot.

Bring Back Uncle Sidney!

Our friend, fellow WBAI producer and Saddle Pal Uncle Sidney Smith has been banned from WBAI by General Manager Berthold Reimers. The General Manager will not say why. He won't even tell Sidney why he's banned! This is grossly unfair to Sidney and constitutes abuse of Staff. Why did Berthold ban Sidney?

More to come.

Twitter dumps Trump!
They Finally Got Rid of Him

Trump finally acknowledged that he's leaving the office of President of the United States this coming Wednesday. Well, he was leaving whether he liked it or not. I guess we won't be treated to the sight of him being removed from the White House in handcuffs by the Secret Service. I was half hoping that we would see that. It's better that he finally just leaves, however.

Trump has also been kicked off Twitter permanently. That may bother him even more than being kicked out of the White House. After all, he actually did stuff on Twitter, and he could post his bilge to millions of people around the world and he didn't have to see what they Tweeted back at him. Maybe he'll surface on one of the far right-wing social media sites. I'm sure that the slugs at Fox will have him on often. He'll certainly be in the news for being sued and maybe indicted for all sorts of crimes.

This is the final weekend of the Trump Presidency. He'll be gone for our next radio program, I'm very glad to say.

The sars cov 2 virus
People Still Enable Its Spread

Covid-19 cases in the whole world reached 88,589,250 on Friday, and deaths reached 1,907,608. In America the number of cases as of Friday was 21,776,072 and the death toll in America was 367,635, so 20,776 people have died of Covid-19 in America since our last program one week ago. That's more than 3,000 more dead than last week. The death rate is accelerating. By the time this program airs on Saturday morning all of those figures will be higher.

The United states keeps setting new record highs for the number of Covid-19 related deaths, one day topping the previous day's total. This accelerated death rate is, in my opinion, clearly result of the Xmas surge and the New Year's surge after that. So we have the second wave of the virus, plus the Thanksgiving surge, which I assume is mostly over with by now, and the Xmas and New Year's surges which are still putting more people in hospitals. I wonder if Trump's right-wing bund really and subsequent insurrection in the Capitol Building last week will be a super spreader event? People are being amazingly stupid. This is how diseases have historically spread through human populations. Long ago people didn't understand things like the germ theory of disease, nor were there things like organized medicine and modern medical technology. But in 2021, there is no excuse for large numbers of people behaving like this.

The disease vector in chief, Donnie Bonespur Trump pays no attention to this pandemic anymore, his failed warp speed rollout of the available vaccines is being exposed for another of his fake claims.

It now turns out that the reserve vaccine stockpiles that the White House was talking about do not in reality exist! Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar announced this week that the federal government would begin releasing Covid-1 vaccine doses held in reserve for second shots. Well, the reserve just isn't there. The Trump administration had distributed all available vaccine stores in December; they were taking what had been planned to be the second doses of the vaccine directly off the manufacturing line. Now with lots of people on the front lines at the state and local level preparing for massive vaccination programs they are discovering that there are no vaccines for them to administer. And some people may not get their second vaccination within the proper time limit. This is another terrible development and another terrible consequence of the incompetence and lack of caring of the Trump Administration.

In other medical news, this past week we learned that Dr. Harold Bornstein, personal physician to Donald Trump, has died. The rather wacky looking doctor had said in a letter in 2016, that If elected, Mr. Trump, I can state unequivocally, will be the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency. In 2018, Dr. Bornstein revealed that Trump had actually written the letter himself and that the doctor had simply signed it.

The rotating Earth.
Speeding Up?

It's being reported that the Earth's spin may be speeding up. It's nothing that a human being could notice, but a senior research scientist named Peter Whibberley who's with Britain's National Physical Laboratory said, It's quite possible that a negative leap second will be needed if Earth's rotation rate increases further. Leap seconds have been added now and again for decades to keep clocks up to date. Leap seconds have always been added to the length of a year. The last leap second was added at the end of 2016, and nobody knows when the next leap second will be added, or subtracted, from a year.

monarch_butterfly (45K) Pickles of the North read a piece about Freddie the butterfly and his time in Manitoba's Winter.monarch_butterfly_flipped (61K)

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 open list that no longer exists was the WBAI specific Goodlight Web based message board. It was sometimes referred to on Back of the Book as the bleepin' blue board, owing to the blue background that was used on its Web pages. This one had many people posting anonymously and there was also an ancillary WBAI people board that was just totally out of hand.

In June 2012, I ended up having to salvage the bleepin' blue board, and so I was the moderator on it for its last seven years, until it got too expensive.

Sometimes we used to 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 used to alternate with us, has a blog these days. You can reach his blog here.

There used to be a number of mailing lists related to Pacifica and WBAI. Unfortunately, they were all located on Yahoo! Groups. When Yahoo! Groups was totally shut down in December 2020, all of those mailing lists ceased to exist. One year earlier their file sections and archives of E-mails, had been excised leaving only the ability to send E-mails back and forth among the members. Now it's all gone. Older Back of the Book program Web pages tell a little more about those lists.

We like to stay interactive with our listeners. Here are the various options for you to get in touch with us.

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The contents of this Web page are copyright © 2021, R. Paul Martin.