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Both parties did their best to rush toward the political center, with the Republicans emphasizing George W. Bush's message of "compassionate conservatism" with their illusion of inclusion on stage and Al Gore's selection of Joseph Lieberman as his vice presidential candidate, one of the most conservative Democrats in the U.S. Senate.
Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with syndicated columnist Norman Solomon, who assesses the Republican and Democratic party nominating conventions and corporate media's lack of critical coverage of these political extravaganzas.
Norman Solomon's weekly "Media Beat" column can be found on the Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting Web site (www.fair.org) at www.fair.org/media-beat/index.html.
While engaging in legal demonstrations and non-violent civil disobedience, hundreds of protesters were arrested by police in both cities. Civil liberties lawyers alarmed at what they describe as law enforcement's overreaction to dissent this summer have criticized police surveillance, harassment and pre-emptive strikes against organizers. They also cite instances of police brutality and excessively high bail set for those arrested.
Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with John Sellers, director of the California-based Ruckus Society, which trains activists in direct action techniques. Sellers talks about his arrest during the GOP convention in Philadelphia, where he was accused of being a facilitator of violence and mayhem and held on $1 million bond, later reduced to $100,000.
Contact the Ruckus Society by calling (510) 848-9565 or visit their Web site at www.ruckus.org
Via an Internet Web site, the Seattle Independent Media Center, and the many new independent centers that have sprung up afterward, distribute information through video, audio, photography and text chronicling the activities and analysis of a growing global social justice movement. The Seattle IMC was wildly successful, attracting more than a million "hits" daily during the protests from an audience anxious to bypass the corporate media spin.
Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Alan Minsky, general coordinator of the Los Angeles Independent Media Center, which covered the Democratic Party Convention. He discusses the philosophy behind the IMCs, which have been launched in more than two dozen major cities on four continents since last winter's Seattle WTO protests.
Visit IMC Web sites across the globe at: www.indymedia.org
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