Netroots Nation 2011 Journal
Wow, you can really feel the energy here in Minneapolis at Netroots Nation 2011 – the vibe is so much better than at Starbucks where that fascist Mr. Rodriguez keeps oppressing me by insisting that I get to work on time! Because of the capitalist system under whose yoke we all groan, I had to get the money to come from my parents, which is only fair since they have money and because of George Bush I don’t. I heard Dad joking about how he was “delighted to have that 30-year old bum out of my basement for a weekend.” Mom gave me a ride to the airport in the Explorer and on the 747 I had time to write up a Daily Kos post about the need to ration carbon credits to control global warming – I mean "climate change."
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I went to check into my hotel room and the guy at the front desk complimented me on my clothes. “Nice Che tee,” he said. “Funny coincidence - my family is from Cuba. So, will you be wearing your Mao t-shirt tomorrow?” How did he know? Anyway, I was a little unhappy with my room – it was on the top floor between the elevators and a guy who turned out to be the drummer for Anthrax. He sure had a lot of loud parties.
Off to the convention center for to help build a socialist future – oh wait, I’m not supposed to say “socialist.” Andrew Breitbert's operatives are in the area and according to Markos, “We’re still keeping our real goal on the down low until after the reelection.” Shhh – mum’s the word, fellow “progressives!”
By the way, I thought I saw Markos himself, but it turned out to be a guy dressed as an elf from the Dungeons & Dragons convention down the street. My mistake!
What a totally great day – it’s so nice to be able to eat, drink, party and speak about our political vision in this fascist country where hunger, thirst, oppression and political repression rule!
I got an important warning about how the Right Online convention is nearby. My friend Tupac Pelosi-Mumia, who lives with his parents Marge and Fred Bosley in Beverly Hills (“I kills me that they forced me to drive a Mercedes bought with his money made oppressing the workers at his department stores, but I do it for the sake of the struggle”), told me about a terrifying encounter he had with a couple of rampaging conservatives. All he did was throw a free range egg at them during a “No Free Speech for Fascists” demonstration there by Take Back the Mid-Day, his pro-civil liberties collective.
“They were going to give me a wedgie,” he reported, “But the surprise was on them -- I don’t believe in wearing underwear! It’s part of the patriarchal paradigm!” The brutality of the wingnuts is truly terrifying. “Those conservatives are tough and mean and they will kick your ass,” Tupac said. “And that’s just the women.”
There were so many panels to choose from! I couldn’t decide on whether to go to “Gender Justice and Making Men Pay” or “Azatlan Now: Getting the US Out of North America,” so I just wandered around to see what superstars I could run into. It was awesome – I even got to shake Keith Olbermann’s hand, but he was kind of cold to me after I told him “I will totally watch your show as soon as I can find the Logo channel!” It is the Logo network, right? Or is it the Oprah one?
Plenty of petitions to sign too – I love getting involved in hand-on activism that makes a difference! I signed petitions about banning eating whales, tuna, beef, pigs, and chicken. I kind of drew the line at the super-vegan guys – call me a “bean curd criminal,” but as far as I’m concerned, you’ll have to pry my tofu out of my mom’s fridge.
I also signed some green energy petitions but had to stop to answer a call from United telling me my upgrade came through for the flight home – bingo! Finally, some guys dressed like pimps told me all about this deadly poison the capitalists are forcing on us called dihydrogen monoxide. I never took a science course at Berkeley since I didn’t have time as a double major in Womyn’s Literature and Oppression Studies, but this sounded terrible. They even filmed me talking a little about banning dihydrogen monoxide, a campaign that I think will become one of my personal issues.
First, I was riding on a unicorn. Then the penguins came up and started trying to take all my money because they said they “needed it more.” Then a shadow fell across everything and I was being chased by a monster – it was a 70’ tall Andrew Breitbart and he was screaming “You know I’m right, you know everything you believe is a freaking joke!” Then there was some loud drumming and someone was shouting about throwing the keg out the window and I then woke up.
Oh, wait, I thought this was my dream journal, not my Netroots Nation 2011 journal. Sorry!
I started the morning by not taking a shower again and made sure to roll up my sleeve high enough so everyone could see my tribal tattoo. It’s important that everyone know I bear that mark of individuality so I can fit in with the other attendees. Then I updated my Twitter feed with a couple of entries about how excited I was to occupy the urinal next to Al Franken – just being so near him gave me stage fright! BTW, don’t forget to follow me on Twitter at @ItsAllStillBushsFault69!
Saturday is party day at Netroots Nation, but first some panels! My favorite was the one chronicling our huge victories in Wisconsin. Yes, victories! After all, the people united can never be defeated.
See, even though technically, that Nazi genocidal homophobe governor and fellow running dog lackeys managed to totally cut the power of the public employee unions and to utterly defeat our candidate for the Wisconsin Supreme Court, we came out ahead! As the panel explained, now the whole world can see that DMV clerks, diversity officers, regulation writers, self-esteem counselors and other vital government workers represented by the AFSCME, the NEA and other unions are really the brutalized coal miners of today. The level of oppression some of them are suffering is unbelievable – how can anyone be so inhuman as to demand they pay 4% of their own pension costs? It's pretty clear which side the American peple are going to come down on!
Then onto the fun! I heard there was a pub trivia contest, and I was so there. The questions were real brain teasers:
"Name one Marxist nation that has actually increased human freedom as opposed to crushed all basic human rights."
"Fill in the blank: The term 'Nazi' means 'National what Party'?"
"Identify a McCarthy martyr who wasn't a Stalin-loving communist traitor."
"What member of the armed forces do we leftists consider a true hero who did not get that status by betraying the United States in some manner like Bradley Manning?”
"What political party recently made a Senate icon of a KKK kleagle?"
Talk about tough questions - no one had an answer for any of them! But not everyone was having fun. I think I saw Dave Weigel there muttering something about “Geez, these people are lame even for leftists. I’m checking out Malkin’s Right Online hospitality suite.”
After the pub trivia petered out following an argument between one group that called the game “sexist” and another that called it “racist,” I found my pal Tupac and we headed to the Sexy Socialist Singles mixer. I opened a tab on Tupac’s parents’ credit card and we started to see if there was anyone willing to look beyond mere physical appearance and really know and accept our inner beauty as opposed to react merely to superficialities. But amazingly, every girl – I mean “womyn” – we talked to told us she was a lesbian. I mean, that’s great, but what are the odds?
Finally, we did find a couple of attractive, in a sort of bourgeois way, womyn who seemed interested in us buying them drinks. I really respected their intellect, empathy, and the way one asserted herself against male oppression by telling Tupac, “Hey trustafarian, my eyes are up here – can’t you see I need another Zima?”
But while Tupac was off getting it, two guys in suits with Right Online badges came up. “Hey ladies, when you get sick of Commie McNevershower here, you oughta come party with some real men. But be warned – we like guns, capitalism and we lay pipe like Alaskan oilmen. If you’re ready to step to the right, we’ll be firing up Macanudos on the patio.” Then one handed me his empty Guinness bottle and they walked off.
The womyn were totally outraged. “Can you believe that?” one said. “So arrogant, so ... powerful. Let’s go give them a piece of our mind.” The other nodded. “Yes, a piece ... of our minds.” As they went off to confront those sexist jerks, I shouted, “You go girls!”
So, back in my hotel room, I couldn’t sleep because of the drumming so I got on the computer and checked out “HotProgressiveBabes.com.” Well, there were at least two things wrong with that name and I’m not sure they were even progressive. I next wrote a Daily Kos piece on the need for a government entitlement program to assist those who George Bush has prevented from meeting girls. Then I tried to sleep – after all, there’s still one more exciting day of Netroots Nation to go!