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Racism Defeated - for the Moment
Published on August 10, 2004 By Phil Osborn In Politics
So, with just the lucky chance of my noticing from my mailing from the Orange County Peace Coalition that the IPC was meeting locally, I drove up to Anaheim after dealing with the gang once again at my storage unit (see my article Life Goes On....). It took a while for the IPC quorum to arrive, and there was Rafael Ranteria, with yet another resolution to create racial/ethnic quotas for programming at KPFK. He literally wanted percentages for every group in the universe, and a rule that mandated each group would get at least that percentage of representation in programming at the station.

I asked what they were going to do about my case - not untypical. I have at least one native American ancestor, accounting for, I was told once, 1/32 of my genetic makeup. And, who knows, maybe some ghost of cultural infection has somehow remained over the generations to haunt my otherwise Euro-American prejudices. So, do we go by strict percentages of genetic endowment here, as in Alabama and Mississippi, where 1/32 African ancestry meant that you were legally black? Am I therefore a native American, or does 1/32 of my genetic makeup (actually, that's only a probability - could be zero or much more - purely a roll of the dice.) qualify me somehow to increase by that tiny amount the mandated New England tribes representation in programming?

Remember, folks. This is anti racism... Right.

What about the length of time spent on the continent? We know from genetic analysis confirmed by both mitochondrial DNA on the female side and Y chromosome on the male side that there were three major human invasions of the Americas over a span of 15,000 or more years - before the recent European invasions that began with the Grand Banks fishermen docking for water, etc. (and incidentally introducing a series of plagues that wiped out up to 98% of the natives in the NorthEastern North American continent). The first two were from Asia, but by different routes. The last big one before the modern European invasion also came from Europe (!) comprising the ancestors or a number of the Great Lakes and New England area tribes - who look European, BTW. So, should everyone but the original group pay back rent for the past 15,000 years? How does one claim a continent, anyway?

And were the most recent pre-Columbine occupiers in fact the rightful owners? The Aztecs had been committing systematic genocide against their neighbors for some time before the Spanish arrived. I've even read that the total population of Mexico was on the decline, due to the mass religious/political executions by the Aztecs, before the Spanish brought in the various disease that killed off 90%+ of the remainder. And, now that the Mayan writings have finally been deciphered, we also know that they were about as bloody as the Aztecs, so much so that finally they abandoned their city states, possibly to end the endless violence. Warfare between the Mayan city-states was pretty much continuous and brutal. How many times was that land stolen by force before the Europeans got here? (Not that the European record was much better.)

These and other similar questions leave me baffled as to a real resolution which would satisfy all comers... However, I'm absolutely certain of one thing: When Rafael does get his mandatory percentages, I know that HE will not suffer such doubts. Fortunately, after some fairly heated discussion from within the IPC as well as from the thirty or so listeners attending, Rafael's motion was either defeated or withdrawn - I forget now - but it was clear that he was virtually the sole supporter. However, I am absolutely certain that he will keep introducing similar resolutions, or much watered down versions, or let other people do it for him, so that some "compromise" resolutions will creep in regardless of rationality. Randy Smith, who introduced several other motions related to similar matters, in fact tried for a compromise on Rafael's motion, which would have reduced the percentage of programming to be determined by ethnic percentages to only 50%.

Grimly opposed to all the nonsense through the entire meeting was Linda Krausen, who worked with one of my KPFK heros, Mike Hodel, back in the early '70's. She consistently referred to the Pacifica Mission Statement as her Bible. I can only imagine how many frustrating hours she must spend at these meetings, dealing with motion upon motion to slime in some wedge of racist quotas that will forever lock in the power of the ethnic kingmakers. And if she misses a meeting, God knows what might happen. Hey, everybody, let's send Linda flowers, cookies, money(?). OK? Just to reward good action. She really deserves it.

There were additional motions - all from Randy - which dealt with eliminating old programming to make way for new programming and specifically focussing on programmers who had more than two hours of air time per week - Roy, are you listening? Also included, music shows more than one hour long - amended by friendly amendment to exclude music shows that mixed in political or social commentary..., and, shows that clearly do not serve the Pacifica Mission in any important way... All to be decided by our IPC reps, or the plethora of committes that exist almost entirely on paper so far.

I introduced the idea that perhaps the listeners might want to have a direct say, or at least notification and time for input on any programming decisions of this sort, but I got a wave of negative reaction from several board members for that crackpot idea. Hey, next some idiot will suggest that listeners vote on members of the IPC or LSB. There were a couple of promising resolutions that we never got to because of all the useless propaganda from the ever-vocal animal-rights group that basically tried to take over every discussion and turn it into yet another tirade about you know what. As though anyone would ever listen to someone who behaved so rudely and senselessly. Presumeably these will be taken up at the next meeting. One of them mandated at least one hour of programming per week must be debate or dialog between persons of opposing views....

Actually, while Randy's resolution as written really doesn't make much sense, I can see how you could have an actual debate forum, in which not so much the subject matter, but the logic and the argumentation were the focus of study. There is that absolutely wonderful book "Fallacy, the Counterfeit of Argument," which will get you all kinds of interesting hits if you google on it. I was turned on to it in high school. Teaching people to think clearly and separate propaganda from reasoned argumentation would sure be a plus.

There was also a separate discussion of some kind of problem related to the "Feminist Magazine" program. (I think this may also have been introduced by Randy.) Apparently there were some well-founded complaints made as to racial or ethnic attacks or slurs occurring on that program. There was talk of a motion regarding "hate speech," but since no one could agree as to a definition of it, it was tabled, while a motion for the IPC members to personally consider, during the period before the next IPC meeting, what they would deem "hate speech" to consist of was passed, I believe. (introduced by Linda.)

The major objection to this motion or resolution came from Randy, who felt that spending the time to research and determine what "hate speech" in fact might be would overburden his schedule, which I can understand. I mean he needs all his time to write all these resolutions. Understanding them first would just push it right over the top.

One odd note: the animal rights contingent was WAY over-represented among the audience, and kept insisting on talking well past the 30-second limit and with total disregard for Lee Siu Hin's (IPC Chair pro-term) valiant attempts to keep them on subject. I don't know what they hope to accomplish by being obnoxious and interfering with normal business, but they certainly arroused the ire of at least one other listener, an elderly asian-American man who finally got tired of being interrupted in his one personal 30-seconder and walked over to the major offender - Bella de Soto - and voiced his anger at her wasting everyone's time. He was seriously in her face, and I didn't hear anyone objecting.

There must be some kind of hidden rule of discussion that the more stupid or inane your position, the more forcefully and righteously you will present it. And we all know that if you are right, then that excuses any need to respect the rights of others. I've seen this behavior before - many times in many settings. The libertarian meetings sometimes get infiltrated by the "Pro-Life" people - only rarely by "animal rights." However, they too feel that since GOD has told them that a one-celled organism has a soul -even though the 75% of human embryos spontaneously abort or are re-absorbed - then that means that they have the perfect right to do anything necessary to "defend the unborn." Any opposition is criminal and should be dealt with accordingly.

I recall back in the '80's attending an OC meeting of a little group that purported to be libertarian, but in fact turned out to be a covert animal rights coven. I noticed immediately that the only members who I recognized from any other libertarian event were terminal flakes and rippoff artists who everyone religiously avoided, after either being burned by them or, if lucky, being warned. Months later, I received an anonymous mailing of a zerox of a document with the seal of the Orange County Sherrif's Office on it which described the role of group's leader as a paid undercover agent. Whether this was real or not I have not a clue, but such co-intelpro-like infiltration of animal rights groups is reportedly about as common as FBI infiltration of "Patriot" "militias," or tax-resistence groups, or radical left organizations. I also recall being at a local coffeehouse in the '90's and overhearing some animal rights guy who lived on the streets discuss with his ragged colleagues their plans for torching or bombing laboratories.

I think I'll go hunting tomorrow - just to spite them. And I used to like animals...

Since she released this for public consumption, here is my transcription, verbatim, of Belle DeSoto's letter to the Pacifica Radio Foundation, which she handed out after insisting on reading the entire thing out-loud to us at the IPC:

BELLA DE SOTO (note: I have not included her home phone or address, as I have no desire to cause trouble for her, even though she did include that information on the sheet she handed out.)

E-MAIL:BELLADSX@peoplepc.com         Aug. 8th/2004

To: Pacifica Radio Foundation

KPFK Station - 90.7

3790 West Caheunga Blvd.

North Hollywood, Ca 91604

PROGRESSIVE RADIO


Mission Statement


In keeping with the Progressive Mission Statement of The Pacifica Radio Foundation, which I have been very involved with at various stages throughout the past Four years, I strongly feel that there's much being missed in our dialogue/analysis (patchwork), vs identifying root causes to thereby help craft effective solution measures to our many ills.

With aim, not to just provide a forum for all usual suspects, but further to truly expand radio programming for issues not being aired on KPFK to date!

From A - Z related ethnic groups, and the ever growing concerns, which go uncovered from the mundane to why the stark lack of civic participation in this so called American experience! As The World gazes in dismay toward our capabilities, or lack thereof to impact positive critical/radical political change, our Social Justice struggles have not matured to a formidable state. Some activists have described me as an "Activist x10", because I am an Activist at large, which allows me to engage in many facets of the struggles. However, we continue to exhaust our energies on issues, but with a void of a more cohesive common local and global collective.

Though KPFK proclaims a Progressive plank, 98% of the programmers promote a Liberal viewpoint, not a truly Progressive one!

In this end, my effort is to illuminate many areas of concern to us all in a Progressive light, not a Liberal one, to fill this void on the airwaves of KPFK, now being expressed by many.

This effort will also encourage a Collective Roundtable opportunity, to engage wider participation.

I appreciate you attention to this proposal at your earliest possible convenience, and await your prompt response.

Thank you.

Cordially, Love/Peace/Force

Bella

(Bella finishes with a hand-written P.S.

"Further, my bilingual English/Spanish capability will lend this space great outreach."

Speaking of "space," or, maybe "spaced" is more appropriate, some of you may have missed one of the great funny movies of all time - "Dark Star" - co-written by the same Dan O'Bannon who co-wrote the screenplay for "Alien." DS was done on a shoestring - a few tens of thousands of dollars, I believe. There's one character in DS that is too good to be real... I thought. This is from memory over 15 years old, so forgive the innaccuracies, ok?

The gas jockey who fuels the spaceship Dark Star, about to leave on its endlessly extended mission (NASA budget has been cut and they can't afford the landing fees to bring it back, or some such problem) to destroy stars that will otherwise go nova, clearing the path for human expansion ... anyway, the gas jockey, with his oversized gas hose right out of your local ARCO or Chevron station, swings around suddenly when the captain taps him on the back as he is about to board, knocking the captain out cold on the launch pad right beneath the motors. Someone at a distance, thinking he is the captain, tells him to put on his helmet and get on board or they will miss the only launch window that century. So, confused, he does so, and then can't get it off or turn off the sun filter, so the other crewpeople just assume that he's their captain and wave him on.

Flash forward to several years later, and the gas jockey is recording his computer video diary. But first, he reviews past entries...

As, with a look of pained martyredom ~"Well I just don't see why I can't vote on procedures along with everyone else. I have just as much seniority as anyone, including the acting Captain! Just because I'm not an official crew member..."

We flash back to the present. Watching this performance, our hero nods in confident assurance at the righteousness, and reviews the next one, and the next, each more absurd than the previous. Finally, with a final nod of self-congratulation, he records the new diary entry, which is even worse. And with no more consciousness than any of the prior ones.

Now please reread Bella's entry. As Lee Siu Hin put it to me after the IPC meeting, ~"You have to take it as humor and just laugh. Otherwise you go crazy."

On a darker note, a LOT of valuable time was wasted, and more to come, doubtless. Let's hope that the sane people prevail and sustain themselves spiritually somehow. It does occur to me that if someone just wanted to sabotage the IPC, this would pretty well do it. They already have enough on their plate, without having to deal with endless attempts to sneak in the ethnic agendas or animal rights protestors, etc. In fact, Lee Siu Hin asked the audience at large to please do something about the fact that the IPC is still lacking several mandated members. Somehow the station has drug its feet on electing the remainder of the IPC, so they are crippled from the get-go.

And the last report I got from the LSB was not any better. Word has it that the ethnic crew dragged the meeting out way past the specified deadline, until virtually all the opposition had been forced to leave, and then passed some nasty measure that otherwise could not have made it. But, of course, if your cause is just, then God gives you a special dispensation for all your crimes. How often has that excuse been used?

Final note: Most of the real work is supposed to be done by a long list of IPC committees. Unfortunately, none of them apparently exist yet (after how many months???). And no-one knows when or where they will be meeting, of course. So, I signed up for three of them, and I haven't heard anything yet as of August 8, 2004.

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