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Minneapolis-St. Paul
  • RNC Studs and Duds

    Last week we brought you our wrap-up of Studs and Duds from the Democratic National Convention. And as Mitt Romney might contend, why grant privileges to terrorists if we aren't going to give them to our own true Patriots? Well, say no more, Governor! Here are your RNC Studs and Duds…


    Sarah Palin: Unprepared? Hardly! Palin delivered the words of a George W. Bush speechwriter to perfection, and never once burst into tears — even when mocking community organizers.

    Joe Lieberman: The Connecticut "Democrat" boldly abandoned 90% of his principles to endorse McCain, which won him lots of new friends while doing away with that nasty committee chairmanship that's been weighing him down.

    Fred Thompson: The failed "dumb as hell" presidential candidate redeemed himself by delivering a fiery recount of each individual wound sustained by John McCain as a North Vietnamese POW.


    Rudy Giuliani: America's Mayor talked long enough to preempt a Sarah Palin video, and yet inexplicably made just one reference to 9/11. That's like Don McLean giving a concert and not playing "American Pie"!

    Levi Johnston: Bristol Palin's Baby Daddy — his MySpace photos plastered all over the internet — was dragged onstage and paraded around like a pony. His life is over.

    The Obnoxious Republican Delegates: McCain served in the Navy and was a POW. They, on the other hand, dressed in flag outfits and chanted "U-S-A!" and "Drill Baby Drill!"

    John McCain: By failing to die onstage — which would have boosted Sarah Palin to the top of the Republican ticket — he disappointed the base.

    Tags: Fred Thompson, Joe Lieberman, John McCain, Levi Johnston, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, Mitt Romney, RNC, Rudy Giuliani, Sarah Palin
  • Help Sarah Palin Find a New Theme Song

    Sarah Palin's high school basketball nickname, Barracuda, just so happens to be the name of a song, "Barracuda," by the classic rock band Heart. That's why "Barracuda" played over the loudspeakers during Palin's RNC appearances — but the ladies of Heart aren't thrilled with the First Lady of Alaska usurping their tune

    Specifically, the Heart women are upset that the GOP has used their classic "Barracuda" as a theme song for Sarah Palin. TMZ obtained a statement from Heart's rep, who says "The Republican campaign did not ask for permission to use the song, nor would they have been granted that permission."

    The statement goes on: "We have asked the Republican campaign publicly not to use our music. We hope our wishes will be honored."

    Let's assume, for the moment, that the Republicans will obey Heart's cease-and-desist order. That means Sarah Palin is going to need new entrance music for the next two months! Here are a few of our suggestions; add your own in the comments.

    "Janie's Got a Gun" – Aerosmith
    "Shooting Dirty Pool" – the Replacements
    "It's All Wrong, But It's All Right" – Dolly Parton
    "Dragon Lady" – the Germs
    "Let it Snow" – the Jessica Simpson version, not the Frank Sinatra version (obviously)
    "Happiness is a Warm Gun" – the Beatles
    "Dirty Little Secret" – All American Rejects

    Tags: Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, RNC, Sarah Palin, St. Paul
  • LiveBlog: Republican National Convention – Night Four

    11:27 – From Devilstower: "John McCain's Theme for the Evening: I will reach across the aisle and work in a bipartisan manner with anyone who will help me enact every single item on the radical conservative wish list."

    11:20 – Andrea Mitchell said these are the biggest balloons she's ever seen in her life.

    From the comments: "Didn't know Andrea Mitchell had a balloon fetish." – Oddity

    11:17 – Well, one thing's for certain.  John McCain put country first.

    11:12 – From Andrew Sullivan: "And then a final sudden, almost surprising rally of energy. He seemed to me to have more energy and passion in the last two minutes than the rest of the speech combined."

    That's because Andrew Sullivan is wrong.

    11:08 – "zzzzzzzzzzzzz….zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…oh wait, its over?" – Zach.

    That's because Zach is right.

    11:07 – Keith Olbermann agrees with Michael. That's because he's also wrong.

    11:06 – "Barracuda?" Either Sarah Palin just walked on stage, or Joe Lieberman is playing Guitar Hero III on that giant screen. – Eric March

    11:06 – Look, it's John McCain and his two beauty queens.

    11:05 – Michael thinks the end was genuinely stirring. That's because he's wrong. This "Raisin' McCain" song is the best part of the speech.

    11:04 – Manufactured excitement there at the end. There must be an applause sign.

    11:02 – But I don't want to teach George Bush to read.

    11:01 - "The Mavrick"? Guess we found that illiterate adult. – Eric March

    11:01 – "I will fight for her as long as I draw breath, so help me God." Unless a younger, hotter country comes along.

    11:00 – From the comments: "New sign outside of Oval Office: You must be this bloodied from torture to enter this ride." – Punditphoelia

    10:56 – I think "POW" is the new "9/11."

    10:53 – So, he's attacking Obama for never having been a POW? Serves Obama right!

    10:51 – You hate war? Then why is that the only thing this convention ever talks about? Well, besides drilling.

    10:50 – "We can't turn a blind eye on aggression." Unless it's ours! And then, we should never relent.

    10:49 – Did Georgia's lobbyist add that part to the speech?

    10:47 – This is not inspiring me to donate to the DNC. That can't be a good sign for McCain.

    10:45 – Faster, baby! Drill, Drill!

    10:44 – From the comments: "'We believe in communities.' But we can't f($&ing stand anyone who organizes them!" – Derrick Clement

    10:42 – My opponent's three-cent tintanium tax doesn't go too far enough.

    10:39 – Boooo!!! Wait, what was that? Oh, yeah… Boooo!!!

    10:38 – We believe in women making almost as much money as men for equal work.

    10:36 – We believe in off-shore drilling.

    10:35 – From the comments: "Last night was like a drunken, one-night stand. The day after you wake up with this and wonder what the Hell were you thinking." – Biff

    10:34 – I've seen Sarah Palin's speech. And this, sir, is no Sarah Palin's speech.

    10:33 – Bill and Sue Neeby! Yay!!!

    10:31 – He's really marrying himself to Iraq, isn't he?

    10:30 – Now he's in front of a blue screen!

    10:29 – More distancing himself from the Republican brand. Pay no attention to that elephant in the room behind the curtain!

    10:28 – Change is coming? Is he co-opting Obama's slogan?

    10:27 – This isn't a particularly riveting speech so far, is it?

    10:25 – Wow. The only interesting things in this speech so far are the Code Pink protesters and Sarah Palin.

    10:24 – What the fuck is wrong with security that they can't keep a bunch of women dressed all in pink out of the stadium?

    10:23 – Code Pink! Code Pink! Code Pink! Code Pink! Code Pink!

    10:21 – Wow. He respects Barack Obama. And Sarah Plain respects Hillary Clinton.

    But who respects John Edwards? Must be David Vitter.

    10:20 – That's right. Show his mother. Tell everybody she's "96 years young" so that 72 seems young by comparison.

    10:18 – Why didn't they just cut out the middle man and put him in front of a rampaging dinosaur or an Iraqi mosque?

    10:16 – It's not even a green screen!  It's a lawn.  This was very very poorly thought through.

    10:15 – OMG he's in front of a green screen again!  Didn't they learn their lesson?

    10:14 – The "John McCain" chanters are competing with the "U.S.A." chanters.  Don't they know it's "Country First?"

    10:13 – Geez, and I thought Obama looked like a rock star.

    10:12 – The audience didn't know it was time to applaud, and to be fair, the VO guy did sound like he was about to say something else.

    10:11 – Even his mom knows the talking point.  Country first.  Country first.  Country first.

    10:11 – This is actually quite touching.

    10:08 – I bet we're about to hear the words "footsoldier in the Reagan army."

    10:05 – At his core he's a mama's boy?  This is a plus now?

    10:04 – The McCain biopic has started. Is this the theme music to Dallas?

    9:56 – Cindy McCain finished ahead of schedule.  Now they're going to have put on some filler act to entertain the audience.  I'm hoping it's Karl Rove, that guy get jiggy with it.

    9:54 – Cindy sounds very rehearsed, like she's just reading lines.  I have trouble even believing her when she said "I have loved him with all my heart for almost 30 years."

    9:51 – Which is more beautiful?  Cindy McCain or the vista behind her?

    9:49 – I've heard the adoption story before and it's very touching, but in this rendition, Cindy made it sound as though she'd kidnapped them.

    9:42 - Cindy McCain: "I hit a home run with John McCain." And I'm not the first. – MK

    9:40 – Just said that America is the most generous country in history. That makes me really proud. Especially when I don't think very closely to the actual meanings of the words.

    9:33 – Jesus! We actually made it out of that peace protest jumblefuck. But only by dressing up as a cop and an arachist and pretending to beat each other up. Extra special thanks to Matt for liveblogging the O'Reillybamarama thing.

    Tags: Cindy McCain, John McCain, Liveblog, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, Republican National Convention, Sarah Palin, St. Paul
  • Twittering Our Impending Riot Police Beatdown

    Our fearless reporters, Michael Kraskin and Dennis DiClaudio are in the middle of an RNC protest whose permit is about to expire. Since the last thing we heard as we hung up the phone was, "2-4-6-8, fuck the permit, smash the state," we decided to twitter the inevitable carnage.

    Upadate: We're back now.  Maybe there was a riot after we left, but I doubt it.  It was getting dark and the protesters looked tired.  Below the fold is the entire transcript of our twitters.  All times are relative to about 9:30 EST on Sept. 4, 2008.

    Update 2: We were wrong. Stuff happened.

    We've escaped from the police blockade. And not even an ounce of teargas. Kind of disappointed. 39 minutes ago

    We're going to try to leave again.   about 1 hour ago

    People are linking arms in front of the police. about 1 hour ago

    Things are tense, moving but peaceful for now. Someone said "we're going to get a better intersection." about 1 hour ago

    Crowd is marching away now. They busted a cop car window. about 1 hour ago

    Apparently cops charged the crowd causing the run. about 1 hour ago

    That was kind of scary. about 1 hour ago

    Arrests happening. about 1 hour ago

    Everyone is running. about 1 hour ago

    We are told tear gas or pepper spray was deployed by the police. about 1 hour ago

    LiveBlog: Barack Obama on The O'Reilly Factor about 1 hour ago from twitterfeed

    Things have calmed down again. about 1 hour ago

    Cops are backing off. Protestors are applauding. They have conquered the parking lot. about 2 hours ago

    The protestors are claiming this is their parking lot. I find that unlikely. about 2 hours ago

    Protestors are advancoing on police and clapping. That's not a good idea. about 2 hours ago

    MN peace team encouraging people to leave. about 2 hours ago

    Oh boy cops have pepper spray out. People are definitely eaving now. about 2 hours ago

    I'd really rather be watching Obama on O'reilly. about 2 hours ago

    They are singing the national anthem now. about 2 hours ago

    Sign: "9 out of 10 killer robots vote republican." about 2 hours ago

    Protestors leaving again. Some shouting "don't leave! We outnumber them!"   about 2 hours ago

    Spoke with members of the MN Peace team. Very interesting work they are doing making sure the protest does not turn violent. about 2 hours ago

    Cop just told me the protest is still going on and it's heating up. Headed back in. about 2 hours ago

    Stuck behind a police blockade. Might not make it back in time to see Obama on O'reilly! about 2 hours ago

    N614EF says "Peace and Iraq withdrawal can't compete with opening of NFL season tonight." LOL! about 2 hours ago

    I think we're done here. Everyone was well behaved. about 2 hours ago

    The guy who was trampled by the horse doesn't seem to be injured or care. But a lot of hippies are shouting "fascists!" about 2 hours ago

    A guy's ankle was trampled by a horse, but he can stand. about 2 hours ago

    I heard a young woman lamenting the fact she did not get plastic cuffs put on her. about 2 hours ago

    Everyone is leaving this area but I'm not sure they are leaving entirely or going somewhere else. about 3 hours ago

    Sign: "anyone for scrabble later?" Me! about 3 hours ago

    Another huge wave just got bored and left. about 3 hours ago

    Woah! I just saw a GUY riding a GIRL'S bike! Anarchists are crazy!! about 3 hours ago

    @quick13 thank you for the info! about 3 hours ago  in reply to quick13

    A sign:"please don't arrest me. I'm just holding a sign." about 3 hours ago

    More protestors getting bored and leaving. about 3 hours ago

    From quick13: John Ireland was archbishop a reformer on education & immigration but conservative on alcohol & political corruption. Oh irony about 3 hours ago

    Police are now requesting that the protestors return to the capital grounds. about 3 hours ago

    Protestors are getting bored. 13 kids are playing, I kid you not, Red Rover. about 3 hours ago

    Protestors are getting bored and leaving. The first day of school was this week. They probably need rest. about 3 hours ago

    I walked towards the back because the tobacco smoke was really getting to me. Stll no tear gas though.   about 3 hours ago

    Now they are getting antsy: "let us march! Let us march!" about 3 hours ago

    Voring protest but the rhythm section ROCKS. about 3 hours ago

    Quick13 tells us we are on the John Ireland bridge. Thanks! about 3 hours ago

    They have snow plows ready to plow the crowd out of here. We'll have pics when we get an internet connection. about 3 hours ago

    Chant: "Who is a terrorist? McCain is a terrorist.!" Really, that seems over the line. about 3 hours ago

    Sign: "call chris hansen. This war is raping our youth." That might be hyperbole, though. about 3 hours ago

    The chanters: "our peaceful protest is under attack…". I'm here to tell you, it really isn't. about 3 hours ago

    They have snow plows ready to plow the crowd out of here. We'll have pics when we get an internet connection. about 3 hours ago

    Sign: "call chris hansen. This war is raping our youth." That might be hyperbole, though. about 3 hours ago

    Boring protest but the rhythm section ROCKS. about 3 hours ago

    People are now starting to link arms. about 3 hours ago

    New one "we demand justice, we demand peace, we say no to the RNC. about 3 hours ago

    A republican is walking by with a ladder. I have no theories. about 3 hours ago

    Dennis: "protests are a lot less exciting than I thought they'd be." about 3 hours ago

    Dennis says the ratio of protestors to reporters is probably about 1:1. about 3 hours ago

    I found Dennis btw. about 3 hours ago

    People are now starting to link arms. about 3 hours ago

    Ok here's a new one "lezzies and queers are under attack. What do we do? Stand up, fight back!" about 3 hours ago

    Not sure how something like this ends. Do the protestors get bored and leave or does there have to be a physical conflict? about 3 hours ago

    Riot police have replaced mounted police. They are wearing gas masks.   about 3 hours ago

    Uh oh. Folks are standing up now. about 3 hours ago

    They are running out of chants. Starting to repeat themselves. about 3 hours ago

    The chant leader just asked the protestors to link arms. They didn't. about 3 hours ago

    "The criminals are in the xcel center." about 3 hours ago

    A McCain supporter who described himself as a freedom supporter just called a journalist "on the side of peace" gay. about 3 hours ago

    Twittering Our Impending Riot Police Beatdown about 3 hours ago from twitterfeed

    Kidz for McCain! For Realz! about 3 hours ago from twitterfeed

    Dispatches from a Police State: Digital Backdrops Across America about 3 hours ago from twitterfeed

    Woman speaking. "Does this look like a riot to you?" Questioning why police are here. about 3 hours ago

    I just saw a riot helmet that said "press." about 3 hours ago

    Big sit in. "This is what democracy looks like!" about 3 hours ago

    "The whole world is watching." Frankly I doubt it. about 3 hours ago

    Just smelled clove cigarettes but still no tear gas. about 3 hours ago

    "Ain't no power like the power of the people 'cuz the power of the people won't stop." about 3 hours ago

    A lot of handkerchiefs over faces. No tear gas but lots of cigarettes. about 3 hours ago

    Republican guy next to me annoyed he can't get to the convention. about 3 hours ago

    Police still aren't letting anyone across. about 3 hours ago

    "Who's war? Their war! Who's streets? Our streets!" about 3 hours ago

    Woman speaking. "Does this look like a riot to you?" Questioning why police are here. about 3 hours ago

    Big sit in. "This is what democracy looks like!"   about 3 hours ago

    About 20 cops on bikes just arrived. about 4 hours ago

    Crowd chanting "let us go! Let us go!" March is stopped by cops. about 4 hours ago

    Kids are running away, but all still seems peaceful. about 4 hours ago

    Riot police running to front of crowd. about 4 hours ago

    "Who's streets? Our streets!" about 4 hours ago

    Ok, protest seems to be halted on a bridge. about 4 hours ago

    Girl next to me in fatigues freaking that she has a project to finish. Probably shouldn't be marching. about 4 hours ago

    Police are letting them march peacefully despite no permit so far. about 4 hours ago

    Effigy of McCain says McCain equals war criminal. about 4 hours ago

    Separated from Dennis. He's taking photos. about 4 hours ago

    Police have sticks at ready, but peaceful so far. about 4 hours ago

    Couldn't quite hear a clever chant based on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme. about 4 hours ago

    Police are letting them march peacefully despite no permit so far. about 4 hours ago

    Overheard "2 4 6 8 fuck the permits smash the state." about 4 hours ago

    Sign says rnc '08 equals tieneman sq. about 4 hours ago

    Watching angry protestors break the law. about 4 hours ago

    On our way to a riot! Should be awesome!!! about 5 hours ago

    Tags: Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, Republican National Convention, St. Paul
  • Dispatches from a Police State: Digital Backdrops Across America

    (We sent our contributor, Dave Anderson, inside the convention hall last night to report on Sarah Palin's Americana slide show. This is his record.)

    On the lower right of the screen is a group of DC policy wonks who walked toward the camera during the entire shot. I presume they are exercising on their lunch break.


    I love geysers, and they're such a great symbol for abstinence only education.

    Why the RNC put the People's Republic of Santa Monica in their convention is beyond me. Oddly enough, this image came up during Palin's rally for small town America .

    Ronald Reagan's #5, I hope they carve him before I die.

    Tags: Dave Anderson, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, Republican National Convention, Sarah Palin, St. Paul