Talk about a puff piece, this Associated Press short is a story with absolutely no substance. Not only that but after seeing the headline and then reading the story, one is hard pressed to believe they belong together. This Amy Forliti puffery is incongruously headlined "Protesters expected to transform the streets outside GOP convention into marketplace of ideas," yet there isn't any discussion at all of any such "marketplace" or about any real "ideas" in the story. In fact, the only "ideas" are ages old, stale and losing their grip among more Americans everyday.
Oh, Forliti talks about protests filled with prosaic anti-war sentiment, ages old oil protests, anarchists and 9/11 truthers, but there is no discussion of real "ideas" in this piece. Nor does the piece discuss exactly who is organizing these protests, people who are themselves filled with the dead ideas of another era -- just for instance the United For Peace And Justice (UFPJ) is mostly a socialist organization and they are always a part of these coalitions of misfits.
After reporting that a retired 73-year-old doctor will parade about holding a styrofoam gravestone who will be on hand at the RNC convention in Minnesota and after talking about how a "philosophy professor" will agitate for 9/11 trutherism, the AP piece lets us know that these folks comprise a "marketplace of ideas."
Those are just a few of the images that demonstrators hope will capture the attention of delegates, journalists and others attending the Republican National Convention. Tens of thousands -- from anarchists and immigrants to advocates for the poor -- plan to use the streets outside the Xcel Center as a national podium, transforming downtown St. Paul into a marketplace of ideas.
In reality, the only "ideas" being offered by these activists are failed ideas that hold little interest for the average American and have been proven murderously wrong by the fate of the many millions who unhappily got in Stalin's and Mao's errant, perverted paths.
The AP gives us a quote by an ACLU member and one by a Minnesota schoolteacher named Meredith Aby.
"The Bush agenda has really angered all different groups," said Meredith Aby, a member of the Coalition to March on the RNC and Stop the War.
Besides the mysterious Coalition to March on the RNC and Stop the War, schoolteacher Aby also belongs to a socialist group called the Colombia Action Network that proclaims itself against the war on terror in general and anything Bush does in particular as well as pro international unionism. Now, I say mysterious about the Coalition to March because on none of the webpages for the several groups that are sponsoring these "marches" on the RNC convention will you see any "about" pages or any lists of what groups really belong to this "coalition." I guess transparency and honesty isn't their game.
Certainly the AP doesn't bother trying to investigate and let the American public know that communist and socialist organizations are a driving part of these "coalitions." One can only wonder if the AP knows that such a harsh light shined upon that little fact would tarnish the reputation of the group they are so glowingly writing about and that is why this AP story doesn't explore that aspect?
So, getting back to the headline, what "ideas" are these people brining to the "streets"? Well, we won't know by this story, that's for sure.
(Photo caption: " Anti-War Protest Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence," Photo credit: www.nyc.com)