Baseball91's Weblog

August 31, 2008

Xcel Arena, Protestors, Deodorant,& the RNC


Politics to me was a lot like deodorant.  Trying to make me smell not so much better but just not bad.  Recently I tried using the expensive one.  It still smelled like a deodorant to me.  And I still did not smell much different. 


That was campaign 2008 for me.  More expensive than ever.  But not really hiding the smells. 


Delegates, journalists, lobbyists and prominent political leaders have begun arriving in the Twin Cities for the Republican National Convention.  At 1:30 am I saw a helicopter making sweeps just north of I-94 along Lexington to Western Avenue.  I think it is safe to say that security forces are approaching this job like they are in Iraq.


After a legal challenge, the Jumbotron is to arrive Sunday afternoon in the small park across the street from the Cathedral of St. Paul, just above the Xcel Center.  The satellite bathrooms with the patented name of Biffs are set up.   And I can report I saw a worker actually using a disinfectant to make sure those Biffs are clean.  At least for now, at 1 pm they are very clean.


MinnPost, an on-line Twin Cities newspaper, reports that Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist John Camp (also known as John Sanford, the best-selling novelist) this week will report on the street scene outside the convention hall, along with Christina Capecchi.  I am here to say there will be no real street scene anywhere close to the Xcel Arena to report on. 


The St. Paul Pioneer Press was reporting at 12:45 pm that a response team was testing a flash-bang grenade in the State Office Building parking ramp on the grounds of the Capital around noon today.  The Minneapolis paper reported that a state trooper accidentally dropped the device in the parking lot.  


I just came back from walking to Assumption for 11 am mass.  This is as close as anyone without credentials can get to the Xcel.  Coming out of church, there were 4 black helicopters circling the Xcel.   Repeatedly.  About 150 feet above the building.    All week long they have been about 300 feet or less overhead. 


From walking downtown, I saw security set up for cars trying to get into the Cathedral parking lot.  Besides a rent a cop, there had a real cop with communication in his ear closer to the archbishop’s residence.  All of the $50 million St. Paul got must be going to security. 


The best security fence I ever have seen have been built to protect the customers of Mickey’s Diner next to what I still call the St. Paul Companies.  I headed down to the Farmers Market in Lowertown.  There were no women downtown today, except at mass.  There might have been 100 people as Assumption instead of the normal crowd of 900 to 1,000, with the access restricted to pedestrians.


I saw two guys with shaved heads, one earring, who looked as if they played in the NFL in plain clothes, looking like they were students.  In case the anarchists ever arrive downtown.  Every building had there own private security outside on the sidewalk in special issue vests. Every parking lot has a sign posted as FULL.  


FOX News ended up erecting an aluminum building in the parking lot across from the Xcel.  The cement barriers around the Xcel are visible from across from the Cathedral.  No protester is gonna get close to the building. 


I now am staying away from all of this.  I had never smelled tear gas but suspect it had more of an affect than deodorant.   



  1. Comment by baseball91 — May 2, 2015 @ 1:04 AM | Reply

  2. Designated as a National Special Security Event by the US Department of Homeland Security, the city of Cleveland is entitled to the same $50 million federal grant toward its security plans that the city of St Paul had been in 2008, for the imminent Republican National Convention. The city of Cleveland recently upped its protest insurance coverage from $9.5 million to $50 million. The city put out to bid a tear gas contract, according to the Washington Post.

    “The police department that was found to use excessive force a couple months ago [by the federal government],”Jocelyn Rosnick, an attorney with the National Lawyers Guild’s Cleveland office, told Mother Jones, “is still the department we have today.”

    There were 800 arrested eight years ago. There have been 10,000 handcuffs ordered by the city of Cleveland.

    Comment by baseball91 — July 15, 2016 @ 11:54 PM | Reply

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