My farewell to Thursdays at 5

I read this intro to today’s show on WBAI:

Hello, and welcome to Behind the News. My name is Doug Henwood. This is my last show in this timeslot, and perhaps my last show on WBAI.

Back on Monday, November 1, as I was walking to pick my kid up at school, I got a call from the station’s interim program director, Tony Bates, informing me that he and his colleague on the interim management team, interim general manager Berthold Riemers, had decided to move this show to Saturday mornings and to cut back its frequency to twice a month.

I already have a full workweek, and I didn’t feel like adding a weekend morning to it—time I’d much rather spend with my beloved wife and kid. I was also insulted by the cutback in frequency. I’d just raised more money than any producer on this station ever had, by a long shot, on the web, during the last fundraiser—from all over the country and the world, demonstrating that this show has a large, loyal, and global audience. This, and the fact that this is the only show in the entire Pacifica system that focuses on economics in the midst of the worst economic crisis in 80 years, made the cutback in frequency especially incomprehensible and insulting. In the fifteen years of doing this show, no one in WBAI management has ever uttered a word of criticism about its style or content.

So I refused the offer. I’m going to continue producing a weekly edition of Behind the News for KPFA, our Berkeley sister station where this show has been running for almost two years, and for the web, where it has listeners from Austin to Beijing. WBAI is free to take it and broadcast it when it wants. But if you’d like to continue listening to my weekly take on economics and politics, you can find it on the web at my newsletter’s site, (Radio archives), or on iTunes (Behind the News with Doug Henwood).

Enough personal business. If you want to read more, check out my blog, at, that’s I did this show two weeks ago, when I was in Berkeley for a conference, from KPFA’s studio. WBAI was fundraising then, as it’s now doing one day out of every three over the course of a year, so I didn’t do a show here that week. Ok, now to that show. And I’ll see you whenever.

9 Comments on “My farewell to Thursdays at 5

  1. Greetings, yesterday I checked out a “KPFA Workers” website and they’ve got problems too. KPFA is a Union shop and they’ve filed an unfair labor practice grievance. I just started to listen via the internet and now it seems Pacifica is imploding. By the way, today is 91 years since the Centralia Massace where Westley Everest was lynched for defending the IWW Union hall. We never forget. Solidarity

  2. Doug:

    We hardly knew ye!

    Don’t give up the good fight! On to Berkeley!

    We have nothing to lose but our 401(k)s!



  3. Very glad to hear you’ll still be doing a show for the web and KPFA (I live in the Bay Area, so that’s what I usually listen to). You are absolutely right, this stuff is critical right now for a broad audience.

  4. Wonderful news! BtN is my favorite radio show, and I’m very happy you’ve found a way to continue. I’m grateful for the conversations you bring to the airwaves.

  5. I can only come to one conclusion, that is, their is a concerted effort to take the Pacifica sister stations to the right of the political field by eliminating programing that gets to the heart of the economic heist we are now witnessing, and to silence critical opinion concerning the governance of this fascist state we now find ourselves. Best of luck to you in your endeavors to bring truth to the people.

  6. I’m more than glad that BtN continues, thanks for your great show Doug

  7. Dear Mr. Henwood,

    Thank you for your great analysis every Thursday on WBAI. You brought so much light into my understanding of what was going on on Wall St and in the US and World economy. Your guests on the show were extremely interesting.
    Thanks for your pdf book Wall St that was made public and free for everyone.
    I can’t believe a public station like WBAI will let go one of its most precious gems.

    Please, don’t get discouraged – you have a lot of FRIENDS worldwide.

    Emil, MBA

  8. Can’t believe they let you go. Great show, I’ll write a letter showing my support (maybe that witha couple of other thousand will make a difference).
    Anyway, I will still try to catch u on the net.
    Good Luck. Please continue.

  9. Much belated comment on my part, but you’re show is brilliant and you’re obviously an honest commentator. All too rare in these fields. Don’t let the bastards grind you down.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: