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Perrspectives' Netroots Nation Preview

July 17, 2008

For the next few days, I'll be blogging intermittently from the Netroots Nation (formerly YearlyKos) conference in Austin, Texas. While most eyes will be on the headliners like Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, Lawrence Lessig, Wesley Clarke and Alabama Governor Don Siegelman, there are a number of intriguing sessions I'll be checking out.
On Friday morning, Cass Sunstein, John Dean, Adam Bonin and Michael Waldman will be discussing "The Next President and the Law." Coming just days after the release of Jane Mayer's new book The Dark Side and President Bush's latest declaration of executive privilege in the Valerie Plame affair, the session couldn't be more salient.
Also on Friday, Alabama Governor Don Siegelman will discuss his experience as a target of the Karl Rove-directed Justice Department. Sentenced in 2006 to seven years in prison on trumped-up bribery charges, Siegelman has argued, "I think this will make Watergate look like child's play when it is fully investigated."
Given this week's Obama-McCain confrontation over Iraq and Afghanistan, "Iraq in Strategic Context" is timely, to say the least. Spencer Ackerman, Ilan Goldenberg, AJ Rossmiller and Matthew Yglesias (author of Heads in the Sand) will be leading the panel discussion placing Iraq in a "broader strategic context concerning al-Qaeda, nuclear proliferation, Iran, Syria, etc."
Friday afternoon, Kerry national security adviser Rand Beers and former counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke will discuss the issues and proposals raised by Clarke's new book, "Your Government Failed You." From Al Qaeda, Iraq and global terrorism to the threats posed by climate change, nuclear proliferation, cyber-security and the rise of India and China, Clarke and Beers will look at the panoply of national security challenges the United States faces.
On Saturday afternoon, Andrei Cherny and New Democrat Network head Simon Rosenberg lead a discussion of "A New Era of Possibility" for America's global role in the aftermath of the Bush presidency. Rosenberg, who sought the DNC chair in 2005, has been at the forefront of redefining the brand of - and political infrastructure for - the 21st century Democratic Party. While Cherny's new book The Candy Bombers tells the tale of the 1948 Berlin airlift, his 2001 The Next Deal offered a compelling facelift for progressive politics.
Later Saturday, Vince Warren, Jameel Jaffer, Dahlia Lithwick and Jeremey Scahill headline a panel looking into the Bush administration's war on the rule of law both here and abroad. In "Guantanamo, Habeas Corpus, Torture and Military Contractors," the panel dissects the implications for the next president's first 100 days.

One comment on “Perrspectives' Netroots Nation Preview”

  1. "Also on Friday, Alabama Governor Don Siegelman will discuss his experience as a target of the Karl Rove-directed Justice Department."
    This one is going to be absolutely fascinating.
    We'll be keeping an eye on the blog. We'll be liveblogging as well. Hopefully we'll see you here.


Jon Perr
Jon Perr is a technology marketing consultant and product strategist who writes about American politics and public policy.

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