Web links related to the Back of the Book program of July 9, 2001
It's now thursday afternoon 7/12/2001 15:43:20 and this page is done. We've got a bunch of cameras installed at WBAI. Most of us do not like this. I spoke about the city of Tampa, Florida and their spy camera hijinks. I mostly talked about cosmology and the MAP Project that was launched about a week ago. Pickles of the North gave her impressions of the annual Mermaid Parade, as well. She has a segment on this page, with links. I got through a little bit of the E-mail backlog. There is the usual mixture of tenses from what I wrote before the program and what I wrote after it below. So enjoy, already!.
Here is the latest on the theft of Pacifica.
Here's my take on the current WBAI and Pacifica crisis.
And remember, there's still a gag rule at WBAI.
There have been some developments in the listener lawsuits, as well.
Our colleagues from Off the Hook have a RealAudio streaming web cast operating. For a while they were trying to provide a new, permanent MP3 stream but the link to the MP3 stream now just gives you the RealAudio stream. At 9:16 PM last night this feed was working.
WBAI has new “security” cameras installed. They do watch the three doors to the station premises, but most of the cameras watch us inside the station.
We're also going to have card keys installed in the next week or so. This means that we'll all have to carry around cards with computer chips on them so that we can get into the station and also move around in the station. Getting awfully restricted and controlled at WBAI these days.
Of course if WBAI Management wanted to get really high tech they'd use the same technology that Tampa, Florida is using and just use the spy cameras that are already mounted to read people's faces and identify them. Then they could program their enemies into the database and have machines automatically call the cops if they show up. Perhaps the next great technological innovation at WBAI will be cameras they could point out the window during the next demonstration and take a urine sample from everyone!
Meanwhile people are still using 33 year old tape recorders that no one makes parts for anymore to produce radio programs. We do have a computer work station that people can use, but very few of us have been trained to use it.
Pickles of the North's Report on the annual Mermaid Parade at Coney Island
The Mermaid Parade was pretty awful. Since there was a lot of heavy advertising, heralding the gentrification of Coney Island, or at least this century's version of it, there were more people there than I've seen in 18 years. Even more than on Memorial Day or Labor Days past.
There were so many yuppie puppies there it was like 1985 on the Lower East Side all over again. One young asshole was actually whining about people not staying behind the parade barriers because they were blocking his view. He actually tried to get a cop to push people back! Nobody paid any attention to him, though I did suggest he and his girlfriend might want to go back to Manhattan and not bother with Brooklyn anymore.
Ditto for some idiot girl who kept hitting Rat Girl of The West with her big bag. I shared a few words with her as well. I think I told her the same thing.
The monsters are coming from Gotham; it's going to be a long, long, century. The parade lacked a lot of the fun and free spirited antics of former years. There were too many vintage cars, too much control, like starting the parade in the new baseball stadium which was only one third full and didn't make much money for the folks at Coney Island USA, who organize this event.
No marching on the boardwalk; the parade took forever to filter out of the stadium and the temperature was well into the 90's and the humidity was unbearable. Everything was so stretched out and delayed that we missed everybody marching into the ocean en masse to welcome Summer and Solstice, which is the raison d'être for the whole thing. I think we were still stuck in the crowd when it happened.
The best thing in the parade was a man who built a miniature version of the Parachute Jump which he actually wore. The riders were all little mermaid dolls, each with her own parachute. It was great! Looked just like the ride when it was operating.
The biggest hand went to him and a group called The Mermones; yep, they were all dressed up like our beloved band The Ramones only their guitars were big paste board squids with strings of pearls for the strings. They were rocking in the back of an open pick up truck, lip syncing to the music. Everybody was cheering and dancing. If you want to see pictures of these and other participants, check out coneyislandusa.com, and this site.
On June 30th, NASA launched the Microwave Anisotropy Probe (MAP) which will journey one and a half million kilometers from Earth to the Sun-Earth L2 point and look at the universe for a couple of years.
MAP's mission is to chart the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) radiation left over from the Big Bang and look for differences in the temperature of that radiation. The CMB radiation is only 2.73° Kelvin (K) which is -270.42° Celsius (C) and -454.7° Fahrenheit (F). It was only detected in 1965, and MAP is going to look for differences of twenty millionths of a degree Kelvin. Definitely a sensitive instrument.
All of this is related to cosmology. MAP is going to look for evidence of gravitational waves that would prove the “Inflation Theory,” an event that lasted for a very short time but which is thought to be responsible for the current structure of the universe.
Researchers hope that the MAP Project will detect slight Doppler shifts in the CMB that will indicate that the primordial plasma that eventually gave rise to the CMB had been squeezed and stretched in an oscillatory manner. If they find it then gravitational waves and the Inflation Theory are going to be even hotter topics.
At WBAI we're part of UE Local 404 and I've been told that at a place called Tuv Taam that makes kosher meals someone was fired for passing out Union literature. Half the shop walked out. There's going to be a rally in support of that worker and the shop on Wednesday, July 11, from 5:30 to 7:30 PM, at Tuv Taam 502 Flushing Ave. Brooklyn; this is in the Bushwick/Williamsburg area. This is a joint project with the Latin American Workers Project, Contact: 718-486-0800.
I went over some of the mail on the program. I read some old fashioned snail mail, which I can't reproduce here, and I read a couple of E-mails, which you can see below.
Fernando has bought some Reggie Bars from 1979, and wants to know what to do with them. My first piece of advice is don't eat the damned things! They're 22 years old. They can't be good for you now, if they ever were. As for giving out any surplus at Halloween, I suggested he not do that. If some kid gets sick from eating his 22 year old candy bar he's going to jail!
I wish Fernando good luck in making a profit on these things. I have no idea if anybody other than Fernando thinks that they're such a great investment. And there's no danger of Joltin' Joe being rude to anyone at collectors' shows, the guy who told Fernando that should have noted that The Yankee Clipper died a couple of years ago.
Here's an E-mail from a listener who suddenly discovered the radio program metamorphosing from wallpaper to something interesting. It is always my goal to grab more listeners.
I had WBAI on in the background tonight, but wasn't paying a lot of attention to it until I heard you mentioning atoms & molecules & the processes of life-systems. It caught my attention because I've recently been reading a book called “Atom” by Lawrence M. Krauss. It traces the life of a single oxygen atom from the beginning of time to the end of the the universe. It was a bit heavy at times (especially since I'm not a physicist) but it's generally easy enough to follow, and very interesting. I had just read the chapter on adenosine triphosphate and how all living systems on Earth use it to store & redistribute energy, so the fact that you were talking about it on tonight's show was interesting to me. I'd never caught your show before tonight, but I'll make a point of listening in the future now. Keep up the good work!J
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.
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