Archive for ‘denver’

August 27, 2008

The Illogical Caucus

My latest American Spectator article:

“One-in-three women in this country will be affected by rape, abuse or be killed,” [Rosario] Dawson tells the Women’s Caucus, and introduces the executive director of Voto Latino, Maria Theresa Peterson, who declares, “By 2040, Hispanics will be a majority in the United States.”
These are both dubious statistics. The “one-in-three” figure for women suffering from violence appears to be a derivative of the widely quoted claim that one-in-four women are victims of rape, a statistic denounced as a “myth” by the Independent Women’s Forum. And the Census Bureau projects Hispanics to be 22 percent of U.S. population by 2040, which is hardly a majority.
If they’re short on statistical validity, the Women’s Caucus is long on political enthusiasm. For all the talk about disgruntled Hillary Clinton supporters in Denver, the speakers at yesterday’s caucus were unstinting in their praise for Obama. Even the most banal pronouncements were greeted by the delegates with cheers and chants of “Obama! Obama!”

Read the whole thing.

August 27, 2008

Live blogging Hillary

At Chez VodkaPundit, where Stephen wagers that Hillary will repeat her Emily’s List performance by failing to mention Barack Obama during her speech. I’m doubtful she’d diss the Messiah at the Pepsi Center.

UPDATE: Introduced by the Good Clinton, Chelsea.

Orange suit — a bold choice.

Vodka says she looks like “a traffic cone.”

“A proud supporter of Barack Obama” — I should have taken Stephen’s bet.

“You … you … you” — it’s all about affirming the listener’s sense that they are important.

Her peroration included the phrase “faith in God” — she is a Republican!

All in all, a good speech, and a reminder to Democrats they could have had a V-8. I think they may yet regret not nominating her.

UPDATE II: Stephen’s full-blown liveblog is at PJM. Stephen says:

McCain mentions: One. Bush mentions: Many. The Dems are STILL running against Bush. Do they think he’s going to be around another four years if they don’t?

This is very much like what the Democrats did in 1988, when Dukakis essentially ran against Reagan — and got his butt kicked. The problem for Republicans is that the economy now is more like 1992. But still, Bush in 2000 did not campaign against Clinton.

August 26, 2008

Denver: Profits and protests

My working lunch on the patio of the Capitol Bar was interrupted by (a) bad WiFi, and (b) a nearby confrontation between bullhorn-wielding pro-lifers and bullhorn-wielding activists with the Revolutionary Communist Party.

The blonde with the bullhorn is pro-lifer Kaitlin Mahoney. She’s yelling that the RCP guy has no coherent argument for his pro-choice position. Of course, he is a communist, so he didn’t have coherent arguments for anything.

This scene took place on 16th Street at Court Place, right in front of the Sheraton, where Hillary Clinton was inside addressing an Emily’s List gala. The noise was such that even with headphones I couldn’t hear the audio I was trying to transcribe. I’ve now relocated to the world’s noisiest Starbucks, across the street. Christina Bellantoni of the Washington Times is also trying to file her story from here.

Meanwhile, for street vendors in Denver, the Democratic convention is mainly an opportunity to profit by selling Obama-themed merchandise.

Hope is a very popular commodity on the streets of Denver this week.

Here’s a person who is a self-declared “atheist, lesbian, male-to-female transsexual.” Amazingly, “Jessica Sideways” is not a DNC delegate — but is, however, a blogger.

Well, I’ve got to write an article for the American Spectator, so things will be slow on the blog this afternoon. I’ll be back to liveblog Hillary’s big speech tonight.

UPDATE: “Jessica Sideways” got linked as a headline at Ace of Spades and got her own post at the Jawa Report. Some of the comments at Jawa aren’t exactly sensitive and tolerant.

August 26, 2008

Dang: I missed the riot

VodkaPundit, Charlie Martin and I had been enjoying refreshments Monday afternoon on the patio outside the Capitol Bar at the Sheraton on 16th Street. I’d already filed for PJM, and Vodka and Charlie had covered some excitement at the Denver Mint. We’d had a long day, and I was eager to get somewhere to plug in the laptop and watch the primetime convention proceedings on TV. So we headed back to PJM HQ in a high-rise condo a few blocks away.

Bad decision. We were leaving the scene of what, in a little more than an hour, would be the scene of a semi-riot — the closest thing to Chicago that “Recreate ’68” has so far produced. Zombie filed an on-the-scene report.

But as we left the Sheraton, all was still calm. We noticed large groups of police in riot gear on street corners as we walked down 16th Street, but thought this was just a precaution. Apparently, the DPD had intelligence that trouble was brewing. There was some sort of protest at City Center, and it seems that some of those protesters had the idea to march on 16th Street. Police were not going to let that happen.

When we got to PJM HQ, I was surprised to find Michelle Malkin herself blogging there. Founding Bloggers videographer Andrew Marcus and his crew were editing footage from the day’s excitement, when Truthers had swarmed Malkin.

After about an hour, my cell phone rang. It was Evie Brown, who had been visiting friends in Denver (not for the DNC) and was at the Capitol Bar when we were there. Gregarious as always, I’d given Ms. Brown my business card, and now she was calling with an urgent message: “They’re rioting! The Sheraton is on lockdown!”

I was tired, and didn’t feel like walking back for what might prove to be a false alarm. But Jim Hoft and Charlie Martin decided to take a video camera and go check it out.

No false alarm: Police had cordoned off a street and surrounded protesters who were trying to reach 16th Street. And the center of the action was right at the Sheraton. If we hadn’t left the Capitol Bar, we’d have been right in the middle of it. Grrrrr.

Ah, well. Bad luck or bad choices. Either way, there’s action all over town, and you can’t be everywhere. I’m blogging this basically to give you an idea of how difficult it is for one person to cover the entire convention scene, and why collaborative reporting via the blogosphere provides the best panoptic approach to the experience. Just hanging out at the Capitol Bar, however, I made contact with a source who later tipped us to the action, and that Jim and Charlie were able to capitalize on that tip to provide coverage. Teamwork.

As Vodka says, exhaustion is setting in, and it would be nice to have more sleep. But the excitement overcomes the exhaustion, so I have to force myself to shut it down.

Tuesday: The Women’s Caucus. Imagine me in a roomful of liberal women, some of them possibly heterosexual. Frightening. Oh … yeah, met an ex-Edwards delegate. Heh.

August 26, 2008

‘There are a lot of nutballs here’

So says Michelle Malkin, and she’s not talking about the PJM Crew:

Federal authorities have scheduled a press conference for Tuesday afternoon amid reports that a fortunate traffic stop by Aurora Police may have disrupted an assassination attempt against Barack Obama.
KUSA-TV is reporting that two men have been arrested on weapons charges after the traffic stop early Sunday.
The first man, identified by the station as Tharin Gartrell, 28, was charged with suspicion of being a felon in possession of a weapon after police found two rifles, a high-powered scope and methamphetamine in his car after the traffic stop.
When police accompanied Gartrell to his hotel in Glendale, a second man jumped from a window and was injured in a four-story fall, according to the station. That man was then arrested, but has not been identified by police.

We’re still waiting for Andrew Marcus to load the video of today’s “nutball” incident when the 9/11 Truthers threatened Michelle. (Guess who’s sitting about 10 feet from my left elbow? C’mon, guess.)

UPDATE: Just got word that there’s a riot going on a few blocks from here. The Sheraton is reportedly under lockdown. The streets of Denver are crawling with cops in riot gear. Livecam.

UPDATE II: Reportedly seven arrests already in the riot. Zombie is on the scene.

UPDATE III: Charlie Martin just called in from the scene to report that he and Jim Hoft are watching “the world’s most boring riot.” They’re getting video for Founding Bloggers. Charlie says the ratio is 12:6:1 of cops to media to protesters.

UPDATE IV: Jim Hoft has a report on the Truther/Malkin confrontation this afternoon.

UPDATE V: Michelle now has her own post, and links her favorite person named McCain.

August 26, 2008

Truthers threaten Malkin

VodkaPundit and Charlie Martin of PJM just returned from the Denver Mint where they were covering a protest. Michelle Malkin was there, and was “verbally assaulted” and “physically threatened” by a group of 9-11 Truthers led by Alex Jones. Charlie intervened to protect Malkin during the confrontation.

PJM cameraman Andrew Marcus was on the scene and captured “explosive” video. Will update when video is online.
August 25, 2008

D-Day: Street scenes

The marquee of a Denver strip club.

Hope for sale!

A Catholic priest participates in a pro-life protest outside the Convention Center.
Activists with

Tonya Wheeler is an activist with the “Recovery Caucus.”

A PETA activist protests outside the Convention Center.
Code Pink activists march to protest Nancy Pelosi.

DENVER — Sen. Barack Obama credits gay activists with making the Democratic Party “immeasurably stronger.”
In a letter to the party’s LGBT Caucus — the acronym stands for Lesbian/ Gay/ Bisexual/Transgender — Obama said the group “will be crucial to bringing our Party together and sweeping us to victory on November 4th.”
The letter was distributed at today’s meeting of the LGBT Caucus at the Denver Convention Center.
“Congratulations on being part of the largest LGBT Caucus delegation in Democratic National Convention history,” Obama wrote. “I look forward to seeing the LGBT community turn out in record numbers to help create the changes we seek.”

Read the whole thing. Right now I’m sitting outside the Capitol Bar at the Sheraton on 16th Street with VodkaPundit, who’s living up to his nom de blog, having just ordered his second vodka rocks. He’s about to head out to cover the attempt of activists to levitate the Denver Mint. I’ll let you know if they succeed.

Just left the LGBT Caucus meeting at the Convention Center. Outside the caucus, a couple of guys were promoting their product, “Gay Republican Hypocrite” playing cards. The guy displayed the deck, and I saw that my friend Jeff Gannon is the six of spades. “Hey, I know that dude,” I said, and they gave me a deck.

Whatever you say about these Democrats, they’re all about entrepreneurial activity. Fourteenth Street in front of the Convention Center is a bazaar of Obama-related merchandise. I’ll upload photos shortly, but I’m told Jose at PJM is screaming for content, and so I’ve got to write something.
PJM cameraman Andrew Marcus reports that the “Unofficial Blogger Total Access” credential actually works. “Nobody reads the fine print,” Andrew says.
August 25, 2008

D-Day in Denver

Just got into Denver, and my latest American Spectator column is now online:

The ragtag coalition of semi-pro agitators calling themselves “Recreate ’68” has dedicated itself to a vain attempt to turn this year’s Democratic National Convention in Denver into a simulacrum of the notorious 1968 Chicago convention, when Mayor Richard Daley’s cops busted the heads of anti-war protesters in the streets.
As much as I’d love to cover a riot — or at least be serenaded by the distant music of hippie scum howling in pain while I sip a cold Corona at a sidewalk cafe — it’s unlikely that the misguided nostalgia of “Recreate ’68” will be any more successful than the 30th anniversary re-enactment of Woodstock, which notoriously resulted in at least four reported rapes.
This is not your father’s peace-and-love generation.

Please read the whole thing.

UPDATE: Anita Thompson’s in town and can’t quite get the whole “Recreate ’68” thing.

I met two North Carolina delegates on the flight into Denver. My seatmate was Don Davis, mayor of Snow Hill, N.C., Democratic candidate for state senate, and an Obama delegate. He introduced me to Chris Hardee of Manteo, N.C., who is a Hillary delegate.

It was from Hardee I heard the news that Hillary is releasing her delegates, as we were on our way to baggage claim.

VodkaPundit picked me up at the airport and we’re staying at the home of his friends Matt and Ali Traylor. Right now, VodkaPundit’s drinking our host’s scotch and we’re watching a wee-hours TCM showing of Wanda Nevada with Peter Fonda and Brooke Shields, a cheap imitation of Paper Moon with creepy overtones of Pretty Baby.

Well, I’m about shot. If I fell asleep in 5 minutes, I might get 4 hours of sleep. We’ll be on the scene soon

August 24, 2008

Left-wing eloquence

My man Jason Mattera in Denver:

“Selling out to the Christofascist theocracy.” (Via Hot Air.) Hey, Jason, no fair fooling ’em with the chin-pubes camouflage!

“I’d rather just be living my life and having fun.” That’s Jason’s philosophy, man!

August 22, 2008

Democrats tough on security

Michelle Malkin:

Every person inside the Pepsi Center has to have a badge with a bar code. You scan it to get in and out.
One of the few instances where the Dems believe in, and practice, tough border enforcement.

Yeah, but do they have one of these?