Posts Tagged ‘republican national convention’

So, who got arrested last night?

MnIndy’s Paul Demko writes up his experience getting detained while covering the protests

Star Tribune says 818 people were arrested over the 4 days of the RNC, including 396 last night

The UpTake’s volunteer coordinator Suzanne was shooting video of a police-protester confrontation when she got caught up in the melée and was arrested.

Video of WCCO photojournalist Tom Aviles being arrested

What’s your story?

Rage Against the Machine RNC – 09.02.08 (Performs Acapella in Crowd)


Courtesy of Above the Fold

Overheard at the RNC

In the great tradition of Overheard in Minneapolis and the rest of the Overheards

Overheard at the RNC, which now has one post:

Woman #1: So, I was watching the Democratic National Convention last night…
Woman #2: Oh, is that here?

Saint Paul, Women’s restroom just a few block from where the RNC will be next week…
Overheard by Amazed and saddened.

Definitely add it to your RSS feeds for the next couple weeks.

Bob Barr needs help to get on Minnesota ballot

Bob Barr for President

Flickr Image: Bob Barr for President

According to figures released August 19, Bob Barr, the official Libertarian candidate for President of the United States, only has 150 signatures on the petition to get him on the Minnesota Ballot. He’s already confirmed on the ballot in 38 states and finished or in court in 9 states. Minnesota is SO far behind.

It’s puzzling that most voters — fully 55% — say Barr should be included in the fall series of presidential debates, yet the Minnesota Libertarian party can’t seem to organize well enough to get Barr on the state ballot.

But it’s not too late — the deadline is September 9, with an internal goal of August 25 so the Secretary of State’s office can verify them.

Want to sign your name on the petition? Check the official MN Meetup group to see where they’ll be (MN State Fair today).

Mike Ferguson, the national field director of Bob Barr 2008, confirmed yesterday that Barr is coming to town sometime before and/or during the Republican National Convention. Meanwhile, there are lots of videos on YouTube if you’re wondering just who this guy is and how he differs from two choices presented to us.

RNC Volunteer Process even more messed up than I thought

Remember when I live-blogged filling out the RNC volunteer application, and it took me 40 minutes and was a sincerely backwards process?

Well, I’m getting all of these e-mails about when I’m supposed to volunteer, discount tickets to Twins games as a thank you and such, but I can’t remember which dates I told them I was available. That’s a bit of a problem now that the RNC is looming, and I’m not going to be in town like I thought I would be.

So I’m trying to access my profile on and can’t get in. I don’t remember my password, and they never e-mailed it to me when I registered.

And get this — to be sent the password, I need to give them my e-mail, zip code, date of birth, secret question and secret answer. Of the 6 available secret questions, I can’t remember which one. There isn’t a process for “Forgot secret question,” and no e-mail address

So listen up, RNC. I tried to give you notice, but your stupid fear-mongering password system is just as backwards as your application process. Maybe next time, k?

Why I think more people aren’t volunteering for the RNC: the volunteer application

08goplogo.jpgThe 2008 Republican National Convention aims to recruit 10,000 volunteers who will be needed to help with:

  • Welcoming delegates at airports and hotels
  • Assisting with transportation logistics
  • Working with security teams
  • Supporting convention operations at the Xcel Energy Center
  • Providing guest services and other hosting activities at CivicFest in the Minneapolis Convention Center

According to the PiPress today, they are still 6,000 short of their goal of 10,000.

After filling out the volunteer application, I think I know why.

When I saw MNSpeak’s link to this story a few minutes ago, I turned to my wife and said, “Umm…did you ever re-sign up to register for the RNC, honey?” You see, we actually signed up to volunteer on September 17, 2007, but apparently that application didn’t pass muster.

This is from the e-mail I got from the RNC on May 1:

The 2008 Minneapolis Saint Paul Host Committee recently launched a new volunteer application at and are requesting you fill out this application in addition to the one you previously completed.

In addition to the one you previously completed?!? DAMN IT!

“I forwarded you the link to submit the new application,” she tells me, “but you should know it took me like 20 minutes.”

Great. Super. I’m still rolling my eyes. I understand background checks and security clearance are important, but seriously — 20 minutes? No wonder they’re shy volunteers. Anyone in Generation X or Y probably won’t make it past the 3-4 minute mark.

But I pushed forward, knowing there was a red clipboard out there somewhere with a big “My Name is Greg” nametag temporarily stuck on it just for me.

Here are my observations in filling out the application:

  • The password has to be 8 characters, have a capital letter, at least one numeral AND a special character. It’s really overkill. I have maybe 3-4 passwords I use as general rule, and none of them include a special character. Are you like me and just add an exclamation mark to an old standby password in this situation? It’s like my password is shouting. Password1234! But really, that exclamation point is guaranteeing I won’t remember it if I ever need it again, will have to reset the password by remembering what I put for my secret profile password I’ll need in case I forget the first password, which always forces me to chose which of my cats is the favorite (so I use a made-up pet name [that yes, I sometimes forget]).
  • 3. I am conversational in the following languages (this one doesn’t include English)
  • 4. I am fluent in the following languages” (this one doesn’t doesn’t include English, either. Seems pretty self-limiting considering our large immigrant population).
  • 5. Computer skills:
    1. None
    2. Can use standard programs and the Internet
    3. Advanced User: Proficient in Microsoft Excel
    (I’m glad to see an “Advanced User” means you can work a spreadsheet or maybe even tackle one of those fancy =AVERAGE(IF((A1:A60>=Low) *(A1:A60<=High),A1:A60) kind of formulas)
  • 8. Experience with the elderly:
    1. None
    2. Some: Have assisted elderly friends or family members
    3. Expert: Professional counselor or therapist for the aged
    (I wish there was a blank for, “Hate being stuck behind them on 394 in the left lane with left blinker on” or maybe “Please don’t stick me working with an old person who makes insensitive racial jokes, likes to smack me on the back and/or complain about gas prices.” And who has ZERO experience with the elderly, really? We’ve all seen them on TV, at least.)
  • 14. Driver license number
    (If they have your social security number, wouldn’t they have access to your driver’s license? I had to get off the couch and dig for my wallet in the other room. Then I decided to get a drink and next thing you know I’m surfing YouTube “jump style” videos.

Yes! It says it saved my progress so far, and now I’m into the “Referral section.” Time to get up, stretch, find my laptop’s power cord and maybe pick a new iTunes mix.

  • 1. Which group referred you to the Minneapolis Saint Paul 2008 Convention? (I wrote “the internet” — which is probably my favorite group ever).

At this point I got to rate how much I would like to help with certain tasks:

  • 4. Airport welcome desk:
    1. Ideal
    2. Would not mind
    3. Acceptable
    4. Would not prefer
    5. Undesirable

At this point I stopped to ask my wife what she put down for all of these luxurious choices. She stopped what she was doing and tried to remember. You see, we don’t really need to do the same things, but for babysitter and only owning one car reasons, we don’t really want to be downtown and the airport at the same time. We debated event staffing vs. office vs. airports for awhile. She would’ve logged into her account to see what she put down, but SHE COULDN’T REMEMBER HER PASSWORD! (please note the explanation mark).

Then I had the privilege of going date-by-date from August 16 through September 5 to give them availability morning, afternoon, evening or not available. But first I had to get up and find my calendar, then sync back up with the wife. Turns out I’m going up to Lake of the Woods to fish over Labor Day Weekend, but there wasn’t a blank for me to tell them that’s why I couldn’t make it for the RNC kick-off. I hope McCain will understand. Fishing is definitely a conservative pastime, right?

Finally, I was at the last page and ready to hit FINISH. Oh look, there’s finally a link to the Privacy Policy to see how all of my information will be used. Of course, most people don’t ever read these, but I skimmed it just for giggles. Turns out, I really don’t like that they automatically sell your information to third parties:

(i) We may share your First Tier Information with the Committee on Arrangements for the 2008 Republican National Convention (“COA”), a committee of the Republican National Committee and with selected partners and/or third parties to provide you with information about events and opportunities that might be of interest to you and also would provide you with system information or information about similar events, political candidates or the like; however, the application will allow you to opt-out of having your First Tier Information shared with selected partners and/or third parties other than the COA…

That’s pretty crappy. Most web forms these days have a couple checkboxes for this kind of opt-in list-selling. Looks like I’m going to be on all sorts of mailing lists for the next year or so. Hooray.

Overall, the application took me about 40 minutes to fill out whilst blogging it, watching YouTube, Twittering and generally giving way to my ADHD whims. The average person will probably breeze through the application. And they should. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, after all.

Fill out your application here. And be sure to tell them you LOVE the elderly. I have a feeling not many people are “Experts.”


  • The Four Firkins. Minnesota’s first specialty beer store opens Saturday in SLP. Grand Opening on June 14. (via east-lake and MN Beer)
  • “The Neighborhood Energy Connection (NEC) (formerly the Saint Paul Neighborhood Energy Consortium) is a nonprofit organization that provides energy efficiency information, services and programs to residents, businesses, and communities across Minnesota.” They provide a lot of info, connect you to a lot of resources, and also provide some for-pay services.
  • NextStep: “This site has been designed to provide Minnesota Sustainable Communities Network (MnSCN) members and others with information, access to resources, opportunities for networking, and inspiration on the topic of sustainable communities. NextStep site users have the ability to post information and resources on the site as well as to access the resources and information posted on the site.” Great event listing. Sortable by regions around the state.
  • The Sibley Bike Depot is “a non-profit membership-based biking and walking organization. We promote healthy transportation and help new riders through advocacy, classes and the Sibley Bike Depot (a community education, repair and retail facility).” Located at 712 University Ave in St Paul. They have a pretty cool Earn-A-Bike program.
  • Matt and Colin are filling in for Taylor at Mediation this week. Matt starts off with a self-pimp of a legislative session wrap up. “If you are a lunch room lady…
  • Citizen-penned marriage equality bill introduced in Minnesota legislature. “The bill is modeled after a similar bill that has passed the California Legislature twice, only to be vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Schwarzenegger said that the issue was for the courts to decide — and they did.”
  • Bob Collins is a Lynx fan! Sunday afternoon’s home opener was a stellar display. Only one game, yes, but the win over Detroit (three Eastern Conference championships in a row) bodes well for the team’s 10th season. I had courtside seats!
  • The Uptake on the RNC media walk through.
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