Back of the Book — November 19, 2022

We got back on the air this week. We talked about various things, including the recent election. R. Paul talked about how he felt regarding seeing two open lesbians being elected to the governorships of Massachusetts and Oregon. Also, an openly gay man was reelected as Governor of Colorado. And then we got the news that the Marriage Equality Act is probably going to become law. With the Democrats keeping the Senate and quite a number of the Trump-endorsed candidates losing it was not so bad an election. We talked about a crypto currency exchange collapsing, along with its own crypto currency. We compared crypto currencies with the infamous tulip craze of the early 17th Century Netherlands. Of course we talked about the pandemic and more. I hope to update this Web page pretty soon, so check back for the updates.

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? Well, I do, and I've recently updated some of that.

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 WBAI LSB will meet in executive session on December 7, 2022. The next regular LSB meeting will be held on Wednesday December 14, 2022, at 7:00 PM on ZOOM, even though ZOOM compromises privacy and security. This meeting will be held as a teleconference meeting, as the 40 previous public meetings were because of the pandemic.

The WBAI LSB met on Wednesday, November 9, 2022. The LSB passed a motion that listeners can contact the LSB; I'm not sure how that's going to work out. And Management was told to set up a phone number to call the LSB; I don't think that's going to happen. The LSB was also presented with an impossibly complicated motion, which may be out of order. I got it postponed till we can find out if it's even in order. People just throw in every bit of language they can think of sometimes and call it a motion. And once again certain LSB members showed that they are hardly familiar with WBAI at all. They should know more about this radio station than just what's on the air.

Before the November 9, 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, so we have the following schedule:

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. As of November 2020, Back of the Book airs weekly.

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?

SARS-CoV-2 virus
BQ.1 and BQ.1.1 Are Here

According to the Johns-Hopkins Web site COVID-19 cases in the whole world reached 637,550,769 on Friday, and global deaths reached 6,619,528. In America the number of cases as of Friday was 98,283,754 and the death toll in America was 1,076,835, so 4,480 people have died of COVID-19 in America since our last program, but we were preempted last week so the weekly average is 2,240 which is slightly higher than the previous weekly death toll. There's no telling what the real figures are but we know that they're higher than that, but this is the information we have. The pandemic is not over. Pickles of the North and I are still keeping our masks on. It's been more than two weeks since I got my bivalent vaccination, so I was thinking that I ought to have built up my maximum immunity at this point. Pfizer has issued a statement saying that I will have maximum immunity against the BA.5 variant that has been dominant for the last couple of months, but now there are more variants a couple of which look like they're going to become dominant soon. They're the BQ.1 and the BQ.1.1 variants. According to the CDC as of last week the BA.5 variant was responsible for about 30% of new cases in the U.S., the BQ.1.1. variant now accounts for 24% of cases and the BQ.1 accounts for 20% of cases. A study has shown that adults 55 and older experienced a nearly 9-fold jump in antibodies against BQ.1.1 a month after receiving the updated booster. So next week I should be really in good shape to resist those ne variants. Pickles of the North got her bivalent shot quite a while ago and is in great shape with that.

By the time this program airs on Saturday morning all of those figures we quoted will be higher of course. This was all mostly preventable.

Lesbian elected governor of Massachusetts
Massachusetts Elected a Lesbian Governor

Two lesbians have won election as governors. This past Tuesday Democrat Maura Healey became the first lesbian elected governor of Massachusetts, and the first woman elected to the Governor's office in Massachusetts. The last count we have is that Healey had 63.6% of the vote, while her Republican challenger, Geoff Diehl, had 34.7%.

Lesbian elected governor of Oregon
Lesbian Elected Oregon Governor

On the other side of the continent Democrat Tina Kotek who is a lesbian won in a much tighter three-way gubernatorial contest in Oregon. She got 47% of the vote, while Republican Christine Drazan had 43.6% and independent candidate Betsy Johnson had 8.7%. Oregon had had Kate Brown, who is bisexual, as governor, and Colorado's Jared Polis was the first openly gay man elected as governor in 2018, and he won reelection this past Tuesday. We don't count New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevey because he only came out as a part of his resignation speech after a scandal.

I talked a bit about the early political efforts of the gay liberation movement more than 50 years ago. I talked about the first gay civil right bill being written and how the Gay Activists Alliance was able to push that. I talked about the different people doing different things and how the Gay Activists Alliance was able to focus and get things started. It is amazing to look at what's happening this year and see openly lesbian women being elected, and an openly gay man reelected, as governors of states.

Meanwhile the Senate voted 62-37 to move the Marriage Equality Bill legislation forward, with 12 Republicans joining all 50 Democrats and independents in favor of it. This just gets the bill debated, but they can stop a Republican filibuster with the votes they have. An amendment was made adding crap about religious liberty, and so when it gets passed by the Senate the bill will go back to the House where it had already passed in its original form. I don't know what the language is about the religious liberty clause of the bill, but I suspect that it may be what got the Mormons to maybe not be opposed to it. The modified bill should pass in the House and then it should go to President Biden to be signed into federal law. We'll see if the Supreme Court tries to overturn that.

FTX logo
Crypto Currency Exchange FTX Collapses

The crypto currency exchange FTX has collapsed. Sam Bankman-Fried and Zixiao Gary Wang started the FTX exchange and its native crypto currency FTT together. In July 2021, FTX raised $900,000,000 at an $18,000,000,000 valuation from over 60 investors, including Softbank, Sequoia Capital, and other firms. And then Bankman-Fried bought out Zhao's stake for approximately $2,000,000,000. FTX was the third largest crypto exchange by volume. As of November 11 they are involved in bankruptcy proceedings in the US court system seeking Chapter 11 protection.

Really, crypto currency is going to join the Dutch tulip craze of 1634, to 1637, when people ended up paying huge amounts of money, sometimes their life savings, for just a single tulip bulb, in the history of finance and economics. The whole thing with the tulip craziness was the idea that the fool who paid a ridiculous amount of money for a tulip would be able to find a bigger fool who would buy it from him at an even more ridiculous price. Eventually enough people saw through what was happening that the tulip craze just stopped. And, as in a game of musical chairs, those left holding the tulips lost a lot, sometimes everything they'd had. I think that the crypto currency craze of the early 21st Century is going to end the same way. The basis of crypto currencies is people solving puzzles. The puzzles don't do anything for the human race, they're just computer puzzles.

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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