Daniel on WGDR
While in Vermont I was a guest on a radio show at WGDR, a community station not far from Montpelier.
The way this broadcast came about was that I happened to give a copy of my essay "Lords & Ladies vs. the Peasants at KPFA" to a friend who showed it to Jim Hogue, a show host at WGDR. Jim invited me to come down to the studio and read my piece over the air. The reading was followed by an informal discussion between Jim, Tonio Epstein (another WGDR programmer), and myself. Two or three listeners called in.
We talked about a number of topics, both new and old, including experiences in the veterans antiwar movement of the Vietnam era, the assassination of JFK, and other topics that the corporate media has a long, ongoing history avoiding -- which is why we need independent community radio and other non-corporate media.
WGDR at 91,1 FM is a small station on the Goddard College campus, located just outside of Plainfield, a village of some twelve hundred people. The studio is in the midst of a forest, surrounded by trees turning red and gold in the crisp autumn air. It's an idyllic location with a friendly atmosphere, so different from the ongoing war we have back at KPFA. But even in this beautiful setting, there seem to be a few problems. as became evident when a former WGDR programmer phoned in and aired her grievances. Well, I guess nothing's completely perfect, not even in rural Vermont.
Speaking of imperfection, I made an embarrassing verbal typo on the air when, intending to say "the perfect is the enemy of the good," I somehow slipped and said "of the bad." Tonio gave me a strange look, then continued our discussion as though nothing had happened. It was only afterwards, that evening, in a phone call from California that I learned of my blooper.
So anyway, here it is, blooper and all, a link to the broadcast. It was aired Monday, October 5, 2015:
DANIEL BORGSTRÖM can be reached at
danielfortyone (at) gmail.com
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Here's a comment from Susan, a California person who listened to it online.
Thank you for sending me this. I started listening thinking that I would give it 10 minutest to hook me, but ended up listening to the whole thing. It was, in my opinion, very good radio, the kind of thing I wish we could hear on KPFA. I liked it, not because I agreed with you or the others, but be cause there was a real discussion. I especially liked that the woman who called in twice had views that differed from what had been said up to that point. She put the kibosh on the idea that everything is great at their station and that they are so well run.
Of course, they only had a total of two different folks call in, which makes their job easier. Here they would have had dozens of callers and would have wanted to give lots of people a chance to talk, so no one would be allowed to talk very long. In depth discussions can only occur if each caller is given enough time to actually make their points. At KPFA there are many pressures that make such discussions unlikely.
On the content: I am very sympathetic to Amy Goodman for not talking about the JFK assassination and such. No matter how important it is, it's very old news and if she dedicated any part of her show to it, she would lose audience. I'm also a pragmatist re elected officials. With any candidate for office, if we dig long enough, we will find things we disagree with them about. The reason I end up voting Green or Peace and Freedom etc. is probably because I don't know enough about these candidates to be turned off by them. In every election, I end up holding my nose and voting for whoever I think is best, but they are never perfect. I'm OK with candidates leaving their old erroneous positions behind. Our job is to put someone acceptable in office then pressure them to do the things they should.
Anyway, thanks for the good listen.
Susan da Silva
October 15, 2015
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And it happened that within a day or so of Susan's email, on October 14, 2015, Amy Goodman interviewed David Talbot on her show, talking about the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
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October 21, 2015
The perfect is the enemy of creativity. Hey, good show.
Fred Norman, ex-Marine, Veterans for Peace East Bay Chapter #162
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from Ann Garrison
Dec 24, 2015
Listening now, Daniel. Very interesting. In 2006, I traveled to Vermont to consider joining the secessionist movement that your host Jim Hogue is a member of, and I listened to a lot of WGDR while I was there. As I'm listening, I checked and found that they air Project Censored on Tuesday mornings, 7 to 8 am.. They also seem to air Maria Gillardin's show, Time of Useful Consciousness, Letters and Politics, and of course Democracy Now. Their website is lacking and I got too frustrated trying to find the program grid to keep trying.
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That was really good radio on WGDR!
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I wish I could say more about why it was such good radio, but I can't readily find the words for it right now. Something about the mix of personal and political, the way I could hear them, as individuals engaged in this collective project called WGDR and engaged with the larger issues and narratives of our time. Since they probably don't know or remember me, you might share this link to the Project Censored I guest hosted today; I believe it will air on WGDR on Tuesday evening.
No Justice, No Peace,
ANN GARRISON, A KPFA REPORTER