When the Democrats held their presidential convention last week in Boston, the right blogged, chuckled, and churned out reams of commentary. When the Republicans meet at the end of this month in New York to hold their own convention, the left will be doing something a little different: It will try to shut the GOP convention down. Which party do you think is the party of free speech and democracy?
Taking off from a link in a blog-post by James Lileks this morning, I’ve taken a quick Cook’s tour of what the radical left has in store for the Republicans in New York. And it’s a lot more than the usual giant-puppet parade. This creepy website, RNC Not Welcome, seems to be the radicals’ Baedeker. One page on the Not Welcome site titled “Fight the Man,” which is all about how to mount a “defensive” assault on the police officers who will be protecting the delegates. Here’s an excerpt on New York’s finest (the same folks who speedily evacuated Lower Manhattan and helped thousands escape death on Sept. 11, 2001):
“Yes, we live in a police state. Martial law is a reality. The cops are capable of and overly willing to use excessive force to squelch the messages of protesters and disperse any crowds gathered for the purpose of interfering with business as usual. Going into a demo or a street party, keep in mind that they are much better equipped and trained for close combat than you. They are confident that the law is behind them and against you. So beating the police is about outwitting them, not necessarily hitting them over the head.”
Note the “necessarily.” And should you wish to go ahead and bean a few cops, “Fight the Man” gives you tips on how to do the most efficient damage:
‘Throwing is a defensive act. It may not be wise to throw stuff at the best of times – that will only provoke them and make them want to hit you harder. If you want to throw, do it defensively, strategically, and en masse – a constant hail of debris will create a ‘sterile area’ where the police will not want to go. Remember: don’t throw to attack or cause injury. Throw from the front and then disappear into the crowd. Only jerks throw from the back.”
No, please don’t throw stuff at the cops “to attack or cause injury.” Just throw it.
Fighting “the man” is only one of numerous tactics listed on Not Welcome’s “direct action” page. Other tactics include: “reclaiming public spaces” (that’s activist-speak for smearing anti-Bush graffiti over everything), infiltrating events, and “the art of pieing.” The page also includes a list of hotels (with addresses) where delegates will be staying, along with a map of New York-based corporate headquarters (the GOP’s the party of capitalism, after all).
Most ominous is a page devoted to a book titled Bodyhammer: Tactics and Self-Defense for the Modern Protester, written by one “Sarin” (you know, after the poison gas). The entire book is on the web in PDF format (link to the page, then click on the image), although my own version of Adobe Acrobat doesn’t seem to permit me to read it. Author Sarin offers this disingenous disclaimer (I’m retaining the punctuation):
“its not something promoting or endorsing street violence, for all you journalist hacks that might wander to this site. its for information purposes only.”
Uh-huh, information purposes only, says this journalistic hack.
And this site offers an array of truly ugly (graphically speaking as well as in other ways) anti-Bush posters that you can print and and plaster all over New York. (See Brian Tiemann’s blog Peeve Farm for apt commentary on a poster reading, “This summer the real terrorists are coming to town…”).
The “real terrorists.” As Lileks writes:
“Fine. Whatever. Meanwhile, we have an Orange Alert in NYC. One of the targets is supposedly the Citicorp building. Why? Well, it has some Saudi investment, but what doesn’t. Perhaps it’s the distinctive nature of the building, which is one of the few 70s structures I really love. I’ve always had a soft-spot for the Citicorp, even though it does things I don’t like ‘ the way it lifts its skirts and shows its structural pillars, for example, is a classic piece of nonsense-on-stilts 70s design, but this is one of the few examples where it works. The sunken plaza is one of my favorite spots in New York, but only at sunset. In the afternoon everyone’s broiling in the pit; at rush hour it’s dense and frenetic. At twilight time – when there’s that perfect Manhattan balance between the lights in the towers and the glow of the sky ‘ the Citicorp corner is one of the finest spots in Midtown. You can clamber down, look up and out: such a view.
“Like the WTC, it has a shopping mall and a subway station, which makes it an appealing target.
“And it has a church. The famous chapel whose interior was designed by Louise Nevelson. American bank, Saudi interests, heathen temple: no wonder they reinforced the pillars in 02.”
But hey, the NYC cops might just be too busy dodging that “defensive” throwing by our good and democratic friends on the left.