WBAI archives for Carrier Wave | Back Of The Book
Produced by CW: Uncle Sidney | BotB: R. Paul Martin
Free Form Live Radio by R. Paul Martin and Pickles of the North. Free Form Live Radio: a radio sculpture done in real time using found objects.

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Back of the Book

Once again we couldn't do the archive blurb at CCNY. And I'm just blitzed from having been up for 27 or more hours. This was our 28th anniversary program, and I'll do a full archive blurb about it as soon as I can.

Saturday September 13, 2014 5:00am1 hour55 Download
Saturday September 6, 2014 5:00am1 hour48 Download
Back of the Book

This archive blurb was a long time coming. I had planned to do it in the back area of CCNY, if they hadn't removed the lone computer there yet. (By the way, where are the WBAI computers?) But that back area was infested with flies! Large, annoying flies. Pickles of the North had had enough with the couple of flies that we'd had to deal with all through the program, so we didn't even try to do anything back there. Yeah, I should have gotten to this archive blurb much earlier, but better late than never?

So several things converged on this radio program. It was R. Paul's birthday, he turned 67, and with the end of this program Back of the Book completed 28 years on the air. The day after this program was also the final day of the Middle Third of 2014. Yeah, that's quite enough convergence. Of course we talked about all of that.

We talked a little bit about Joan Rivers, who was rushed to the hospital the day before this program. She had won a place in R. Paul's heart when she went on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson and called Anita Bryant a pig. This at a time when other celebrities were siding the the anti-gay bigot Bryant or were just ignoring her entire campaign to repeal a gay civil rights law in Dade County, Florida. Sadly, Joan Rivers passed away a few days after this program.

We talked about going to Coney Island during the past fortnight, and about the boulders that are being stockpiled at the extreme southern end of W. 22nd St. right next to the Boardwalk.

We talked about these ISIS/ISIL creeps and their "Caliphate" of depredation and violence. They are reported to have captured many women from the Yazidi religion, whom the ISIS/ISIL creeps call devil worshippers. They tell the women that they have to convert to the "proper" form of Mohammedanism. If they do convert they are sold to one of the creeps and have to be their slave. If they do not convert they are gang raped on a daily basis. The ISIS/ISIL creeps have also murdered hundreds of people whom they've captured during the course of their rampage across eastern Syria and western Iraq. These ISIS/ISIL creeps need to be removed.

We talked about an article in the Science Times that says that the human microbiome, which we've talked about on the air before, may actually have a direct effect on our behavior, especially when it comes to what we eat. We've previously talked about how our unconscious really does so much of what we consider that we do on a rational basis. And now we find out that the unconscious itself may be getting infuenced by the microbes that live in our intestines. R. Paul drew a parallel between the gut bacteria and the slugs from outer space portrayed in Robert A. Heinlein's novel The Puppet Masters in that both can end up controlling human behavior.

In other news related to the microscopic we talked about the current Ebola Virus epidemic in west Africa. This is the largest outbreak ever. Large numbers of people have died of the disease and more have been infected. When it was a village killer it was bad, now that it's spread to actual cities it could end up getting out to the world in general, and that would be bad.

We talked about Vladimir Putin just outright invading Ukraine. He's made a speech where he said, "Don't mess with us," and "I want to remind you that Russia is one of the leading nuclear powers." He made this bellicose speech to kids at a Russian Summer camp. This kind of talk actually shows weakness. German Prime Minister Merkel said months ago that she thought that Putin was living "In another world." We speculated on Putin possibly doing the diplomatic equivalent of the old Soviet submarine maneuver called a "Crazy Ivan" where the Soviet sub would suddenly turn at high speed and rush back along the way it had just come. This was an attempt to get rid of any American subs that might be shadowing the noisy Soviet subs a little too closely. Maybe Putin figures that if he acts nuts enough he can get away with the crap he's pulling.

And R. Paul now has a grand total of 35 followers on Twitter! A stupendous record, for R. Paul. Oh, the entire Internet must be burning up with all of that Twitter traffic.

Saturday August 30, 2014 5:00am1 hour41 Download
 Saturday August 23, 2014 5:00am1 hour34 Download
Back of the Book

A lot of this program was devoted to R. Paul's reminiscence of the guy he'd known as Little John Basso 42 years ago who turned out to be John Wojtowicz who became famous for trying, and failing, to rob a bank. There's a movie coming out about Little John, and the publicity around it has sparked some old memories.

We have had another death of a past WBAI producer this fortnight. Steve Post, former free-form live radio producer and General Manager of WBAI has passed away at age 70. Steve Post started out as the bookkeeper at WBAI, and it turned out that he couldn't do that job at all. So he was put on the air and then made General Manager of the radio station. Yes, we cherish our traditions here at WBAI. The station has a memorial Web page for Steve Post.

We spoke a little bit about the Ebola outbreak in west Africa. Ebola had been a village killer, now it's spreading to more densely populated areas. The World Health Organization (WHO) is reporting that there are now 2,127 cases of the deadly disease known in west Africa, but the WHO is also saying that, "the numbers of reported cases and deaths vastly underestimate the magnitude of the outbreak." The WHO expects that the outbreak will continue for another six months. This could give it more of a chance to spread around the world. Not good news.

We talked a little bit about our visits to Coney Island this past fortnight. We talked about boulders being brought to the site of the community garden that was obliterated there some months ago. Pickles of the North reported on the windows on the upper floors of the landmarked Shore movie theater and hotel being removed, along with the window frames. There is speculation about who is doing this and why.

We talked about not getting any new snail mail. Pickles, who's been looking through it all for the past four programs, thinks that there has not been a new batch of mail dumped in Master Control since the initial one early in July. Correspondents are encouraged to use E-mail to contact us. We may need to find another solution for snail mail.

We talked about the big news story this past fortnight where a company claimed that Russian hackers had stolen over 1.2 billion passwords and more than 400,000 E-mail addresses. In the media that do not bother with things like critical thinking this was reported along with advice to change all passwords. We've looked into this a bit and there is a possibility that this alleged massive hack never happened.

Meanwhile, the USB malware exploit on the firmware of USB flash drives that we talked about on the last program was demonstrated at the Black Hat USA 2014 conference this past fortnight. It looks like the Universal Serial Bus is going to have to be hardened against such hacks.

I now have 35 followers on Twitter. I'd gotten back up to 33 this past fortnight, and then two more seem to have followed after they'd read that I was going to talk about Little John. We'll take new followers any way we can get them!

Saturday August 16, 2014 5:00am1 hour27 Download
 Saturday August 9, 2014 5:00am1 hour20 Download
Back of the Book

So when we got here we found that a "new" computer had been installed in the back area at CCNY. It says it's from the WBAI Engineering Department. Of course we no longer have an Engineering Department at WBAI, but then there's a note on this computer from 2008, saying that it's a "test CPU." I'm using it to type up this archive blurb.

This was another of those pitching programs so beloved by all of you, and by us. I don't think we raised any money. We pitched, and we didn't get all that much radio program in, but I suppose that we may as well have just done a regular program, for all the money we raised.

So we talked about going to Coney Island twice in this past fortnight. The second time we were joined by our own Uncle Sidney Smith. Uncle Sidney rode on the B&B Carousell (sic) with Pickles of the North. I will probably do a Web page about that excursion.

We talked about two former WBAI producers who have died this past fortnight.

Margot Adler had been WBAI's News Director back in the '70s. She also started the programs Unstuck in Time and Hour of the Wolf with Jim Freund. She went to NPR in 1979. WBAI has a memorial page for Margot Adler. Ms. Adler died of cancer, she was 68.

Eddie Ellis produced On the Count, a program about prison issues, at WBAI for years. He was a former member of the Black Panther Party. He was incarcerated for 25 years for a murder he always maintained that he hadn't committed. WBAI has a memorial page for Eddie Ellis. Mr. Ellis died of a heart attack, he was 72.

Apropos of our troubles getting here for the last program, the Straphangers Campaign has come out with its ratings for the city's subway lines. The #7 train was at the top of the list. At the bottom was the #2 train. Can you guess which of those trains we take to get to WBAI's studio at CCNY?

We talked about the largest Ebola outbreak ever, which is currently going on in western Africa. Ebola is a terrible disease with a very high mortality rate. This is a serious health hazard, and not just for the people in western Africa. In the past it has killed most of the people in villages it has hit, now it's spreading to more densely populated areas. The Ebola virus showed up in America some years ago when it was discovered that a shipment of macaque monkeys had infected several people at a facility in Reston, Virginia. But Ebola Reston, as it was called, turned out to be a mutation of the deadly Ebola Zaire, and it made some people mildly ill while producing no symptoms in others.

We talked about the group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) taking over a chemical weapons storage facility and a nuclear materials storage facility in Iraq. They have also captured Surface to Air Missiles (SAMs) now. Yeah, they've shown by their mass murdering of those who differ from them in religious views that they're the kind of people who might use what their newly acquired weapons to kill a lot of people.

We talked about a new threat to users of computers and USB flash drives. Two researchers have found a way to infect the firmware of a USB flash drive with malware. The firmware is what makes the USB flash drive work, it can't be erased and in most cases it can't even be seen by the computer user. Without the firmware the USB flash drive can't work at all. The researchers plan to have a proof-of-concept demonstration of their discovery next week. This sort of exploit could really cause problems. USB flash drives are the new floppy disks, how can we get along without them?

I still have 32 followers on Twitter. I'd gotten up to the staggering figure of 33 at some point this past fortnight, but one of them dropped out. Onward and upward!

Saturday August 2, 2014 5:00am1 hour13 Download
 Saturday July 26, 2014 5:00am1 hour6 Download
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