August 25, 2004

Conventional Wisdom

The Republican National Convention comes to New York next Monday, just to give you an early warning before the topic engulfs this blog completely. I won’t be attending the convention live, but I’ll be working four blocks away from the venue for the entire week, as well as attending several media events, and will likely observe both conventioneers and protesters everywhere I go in the city.

As a committed left-of-center Democrat, I fully expect to be pissed off by the actions of the protesters that I witness first-hand, but then go home, watch the speeches by the actual politicians, and be pissed off even more. I know the demonstrators have some excessive stuff in store- everything from passing out fake maps to burning Bush and Cheney in effigy to accosting delegates at restaurants and at Broadway shows to breaking windows at Starbucks to starting a full-fledged riot. And while I’m sure they’ll all have tons of fun, I really hope they realize that not one of those actions will do a single thing to help get Bush out of office- in fact, they’re more likely to have exactly the opposite effect.

Reptilian GOP chairman Ed Gillespie has already stated, absurdly, that “the Democrats are going to have to be careful about not letting the protesters get out of hand,” as though the Stalinist-dominated infrastructure of the UFPAJ and International ANSWER has anything to do with the DNC at all. But the now-until-election-day Republican strategy- now that the Swiftie thing seems to be nearing the end of its run- will clearly be to run ads with protesters running around like idiots, most likely juxtaposed with 1970s-era Kerry testimony.

Here’s another interesting take, via Geffen.

UPDATE: An NYT look at my new neighborhood: “Columbia's Expansion Plans Raise Fears of a '68 Rerun.” The piece refers to the student riot in 1968 that resulted from Columbia University's attempt to expand into Harlem; I guess you can just call this 1968 Rerun Week then- though at least Kerri Walsh and Misty May didn't do a Black Power salute from the medal stand.

Posted by Stephen Silver at August 25, 2004 03:00 AM
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