If a progressive discusses serious policy alternatives in the woods…

For the supposedly liberal media, liberals and progressives have become dancing bears; they're to be mocked and laughed at, but never given serious coverage.

Whether you're a wild-eyed revolutionary pinko or a centrist Democrat, you should understand that nothing will ever change in this country until we challenge that cultural norm head-on.

That was brought into sharp relief today, when I attended the Congressional Progressive Caucus's Alternative State of the Union. Fourteen members of Congress gathered at the DNC's headquarters in Washington to discuss where the union's really at after five years of Bush mismanagement.

They were elected to districts with some of the highest population densities in the country - Seattle, Los Angeles, San Diego - meaning that together they represented probably 4 or 5 percent of the U.S. population.

They discussed serious policy alternatives, based on the simple idea that an activist, transparent government could make people's lives better. They talked about healthcare, "smart security" and the effects of globalization on America's middle class. They talked about disaster preparedness, corruption and the war in Iraq.

Polls show that all of these issues are uppermost in Americans' minds, and that people trust the Democrats to do a better job dealing with them than the Republicans, whose guiding philosophy -- that government is inherently incompetent -- will remain a perfectly self-reinforcing loop as long as they retain power.

But the corporate media simply boycotted the event. "We spoke with the Washington Post, the New York Times, AP, Reuters and C-Span," said Joia Nuri, one of the event's organizers. "I'm shocked none of them came."

When they put a fresh roll of toilet paper in the Heritage Foundation's ladies' room C-Span covers it. They cover college Republican conferences, abortion foes' press gaggles and Christina Hoff Sommers' rants about the evils of the Vagina Monologues.

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