The convention overall feels a lot like a big TV show, situated in a
basketball arena. Not sure where the news is here, except for
what you hear from those you meet. Oh, yea, that’s what all
conventions are really about.
The bloggers have the coolest perch–high up on
floor seven, slot 318 and 319, on little plywood and erector-set
scafolds slightly set out from the seats. Looking far down to the
deligates on the floor, one could be forgiven for thinking of spit
Climbing up there was fun–kind of a boys club: Dave Winer, Matt Stoller,
Michael Feldman, Matt Gross, Joe Rospars, Jerome Armstrong,
Jascha Franklin-Hodge, Clay Johnson. Hanging out, blogging, talking, enjoying the show.
Terrific talk with Matt Stoller about Sudan. Good ideas and a real concern for the issue.
Conversation with Markos of the DailyKos–he knows about Sudan
but is not inclined to intervene–“I see no answer”–I asked him to
consider an African peacekeeping force funded through the UN by large
countries including the US. He asked “Why don’t the
Africans do something?”
I pointed out that Nigeria and Rwanda are committing troops, but yes,
the AU is not taking effective action. I don’t know the detailed
politics of why..
Meanwhile, Fish found a place to hang out that brimed with
interesting people. She joned up with John Shore, who does science and
technology policy for Senator Leahy, in a hall outside Legends, which
had an open bar for
contibutors, where she saw everyone. She was totally fearless when it
came to walking up to strangers to talk about the genocide in Sudan,
http://passionofthepresent.org, and the Sudan song.
She got within two feet of Jimmy Carter, but secret service wouldn’t let her talk to him.
She saw Jerry Springer go by, but thought better of asking him.
High point was Rep. Conyers from Michigan, who–it turned
out–had just come from a meeting with Kofi Annan on Sudan.
Conyers was warm, thoughtful, and encouraging. One of his aids
encouraged the blog world to keep the pressure on–he says
he is very very sure the blogs are having a powerful effect on
politicians in regard to Sudan–because the politicians feel the
public’s interest, and because they realize their actions and
being watched and will be judged.