Great News! The Republican National Convention has been blessed with its own premature miracle this year. The announcement of VP nominee Sarah Palin's illicit out-of-wedlock grandchild has moved the whole aisle. "She's not aborting" many have cried, in a collective delight over the 17 year old's new lifelong financial and emotionally unplanned burden. "This is great news for the earth's sagging population!" mentioned Mike Huckabee, himself busily popping out a baby in between hamburgers. We're compiling a list of best names, as suggested from Republicans and Democrats alike. Send us your suggestions and we'll post the top five names here. Who knows, maybe you'll be right.
I swear, anti-abortionists tend to treat any saved life like a Chinese panda born in captivity.
JOURNALISTIC QUOTE OF THE DAY
From National Public Radio:
"As for protests on the street, there have been reports of broken glass and pepper spray, Robert, you're there, what can you report?"
"Yes, I've heard news of this, as well - but I've been in the convention hall and, of course, haven't seen it."
- Robert Seigel, NPR, opting for an empty hall of non-convention activity and token appearances, in favor of witnessing large scale protest actions and confrontation with police.
RNC & FBI NO-KNOCK ATTACKS ON UNARMED HOMES. "The way the homes were dressed, they were asking for it."
How could any citizen of Minneapolis feel comforted by the police actions of the last few days? In a pre-emptive illegal assault (that no doubt spiked tensions today) police and federal agents raided homes of targeted protesters over the weekend - bashing in doors and confiscating electronic equipment. I wish this were a joke. In many instances the arrested are still detained, with a probable release planned Wednesday, or near the end of the Convention itself. It's interesting to note a difference of styles between DNC police and RNC police. Denver is already glowing as winners of the constitutional rights P.R. game here. Both are offenders, but note the difference: DNC merely occupied the city with police. The RNC, however, has been treating things as a military exercise - viewing the city of Minneapolis as an insurgency. I'm waiting for cops to destroy the olive trees and homes of family members connected to protesters.
Still, the police and federal raids did work. People were provoked. For those not imprisoned, today's street protests involved much more violence and damage to property than anything that occured in Denver. Despite a complete blackout on all major news stations, some excellent coverage did manage to be both captured and broadcast. The two best pieces of news coverage came from Mineapolis' KARE-11 television who offered online a multi-camera live feed covering miles around the city, and many embedded street reporters. The mix of compelling footage with typically daft local newspeople made for some entertaining juxtapositions, however. Including a comment from one reporter that "the convention center is LOADED with Republicans" preceding this live statement from reporter Karla Hult:
There's a fringe group of about 200 - who have separated from the actual march (estimated at 10,000) - These people, this is a little scary, they've been breaking windows, pulling dumpsters, newspaper stands and other things into the street, with an intent on blocking delegates. They've also been throwing tiny chemical balls onto the ground. But I'm not sure, those might be from the police ... But it's definitely a chemical irritant. We're all dousing our eyes out with milk.
The protesters have been shattering windows down 4th street, including Macy's and the National Bank!
Macy's! How dare .... However the best reporting - almost gold medal worthy in its coverage - goes to THEUPTAKE.ORG, whose youtube channel is enough on its own to cover the sharp intensity of how brutal and confusing things seem quickly becoming outside in Minnesota. Instead of phoned in commentary (as shown above) Uptake is videoblogging unexpurgated segments that capture both the police over-reactions and the general confusion and lack of focus with the protesters, making for very compelling coverage. Here's a sample clip:
Jump to about the middle with people tossing things into the street for the good stuff
In many places, I'm noticing many similar faces from Denver - particularly the early protest marchers. The puppet people have returned, along with big props like a giant Declaration of Independence and Globe. All this might explain the more intense behavior for RNC, particularly since many who visited Denver were treated to more constitutional privilege. Not complete rights, but their sleeping spaces weren't busted into, their equipment wasn't roughed up and confiscated, stuff like that.
AMERICA APOLOGIZES TO WORLD FOR OUR FIXATION ON SINGLE NOTE NEWSTORIES REPEATED AD NAUSEUM FOR SEVEN MONTHS, AVOIDING ACTUAL HISTORY AS IT OCCURS ON STREETS OF LARGE U.S. CITIES ... FOCUS INSTEAD IS ON INSIDE LARGE AIR CONDITIONED CONVENTION SPACES AND ON FINDING CAYLEE ANTHONY.
And where is the coverage for this important American history? I don't find it on the front page of CNN (not a single front page item all week in Denver), nor do I see any coverage on any of the main news networks.Apparently we can't move on until the big news is finished:
You think I'm joking. Try clicking. All news coverage on Convention protests on permanent delay until Nancy Grace and her midget nostril-breathing sidekick fully analyze all impossible-to-comprehend details of missing three year old Caylee Anthony. Who apparently is missing. And named Caylee Anthony. We'll be back tomorrow to repeat that. All other news agencies sign treaty of compliance.
Incidentally, Nancy Grace nearly got tackled by riot police for allegedly holding a cup full of feces, which she later insisted was a coffee drink mixed with soy and breast milk - but we know different Nancy!
[edit to the above: news of RNC protests is now making news, albeit minor - nonetheless we saw a very significant blackout to any protest coverage last week, and expect the blackout to resume once the RNC gets into full swing] - back to news items....
WEATHER PROVES ELEPHANTS NOT THE ONLY ONES WITH A GOOD MEMORY. GUSTAV GOES TO MAT FOR KATRINA.
Who here DIDN'T love this one? The RNC getting delayed due to a hurricane aimed at New Orleans is the first proof I've ever seen that Evangelical Christians might have a point. God speaks sometimes in very strange ways. And when he makes a point about previous damage unrepented or unreconciled it's impossible not to notice. Meanwhile one week's diverted war budget could have not only repaired all levees up to a stronger standard than the previous faulty design, but it could have also paved the streets to allow for all the disneyland condos they're planning to build once the city's completely gone. But hey, let's fundraise! Nothing pandered to the cameras one bit. Besides, who loves the poor more than the RNC? Which is just to say:
RNC FORGETS YEARS OF NEGLECT TO NEW ORLEANS AND LOWER CLASS, TURNS CONVENTION INTO PEPPY FUNDRAISER FOR THOSE POOR NEGROES "They might enlist one day out of thanks!"
I actually would love to watch a Republican fundraiser. A big missed opportunity for Jerry Lewis' MS one. Do you think you'd be able to spot John McCain from a crowd of multiple sclerosis patients? The answer, McCain's the stiff one.