Friday, May 20, 2016

What Could Possibly Go Wrong? May 2016 Convention Edition (w/ Update)

So here I am in Central Florida, it's that time of year for me to indulge in my cosplay geekery by heading out to the Orlando MegaCon as I threaten to do over and over. This year it fell on Memorial Day weekend, which gave the organizers the excuse to extend the craziness out for FOUR full days of sci-fi fantasy horror anime comic book gaming hilarity.

And here I am also keeping up with the current political Hurricane Of Doom, with Category 5 Trump heading for the coastline and Tropical Storm Bernie threatening to upgrade and blow down the Democratic infrastructure...

To where I'm seeing more and more news about Gary Johnson, former Republican governor of New Mexico and Favorite Son of the Libertarian Party, making arrangements to secure that party's nomination alongside a fellow ex-Republican governor to convert the Libertarians into the "Savior alternative" to Trump that the Far Right media pundits are craving to follow.

The big event is scheduled for the upcoming Libertarian National Convention where the nominee process will get confirmed. And it's scheduled for Memorial Day Weekend.

In Orlando FL.

Oh No. OH NO.

I went and checked the maps. The Libertarian convention is being held in a hotel... just across the street from the main (West) concourse of the Orange County (Orlando) Convention Center where MegaCon is going to be.

Never mind the horrors this is going to create for traffic. If you recall, my previous diaries of attending MegaCons all start off with the nightmarish traffic jams getting into the damn parking lots at the Convention Center. With a political convention being held in that area, there's going to be roadblocks, diverted lanes, even security checkpoints that can screw up everything just getting there. To hell with getting there super-early on a Saturday morning, I'm going to have to go in Friday with camping gear and stay the night to make sure.

I'm worried we're going to get some trouble of the "differing philosophies" kind. Granted, there's already a large contingent of Heinlein/Rand Libertarian fans among the sci-fi community that can show up at these cons, but I am afeared they're going to get a little riled up with a nearby nominating party that will get them drunk on imported Colorado medicinal herbs and small government rhetoric.

All it's gonna take is one Atlas Shrugged cosplayer getting into a shouting match with a Trekkie over "The Needs of the Many" and it'll be the Pumpkin Spice Wars all over again.

Madness. Utter madness ahead.

And I cannot avoid it. I've got an obligation to show. There's a panel discussion on NaNoWriMo on Friday and I have to be there to represent.

I pray to the Old Gods and the New that the Force will be with me, always..........

Follow-up 6/2/2016: Well, to be fair, I didn't bump into a lot of Libertarians at the MegaCon, and the overall traffic wasn't bad. Didn't see ANY media crews outside the hotel where the nominations were taking place. So it wasn't the disaster I feared it would be.

On the other hand, THAT IS a Libertarian Party still obsessing over a twisted utopian ideal of Randian Objectivism and a Gold Standard that would kill the global economy. It's also a party that allows guys to get to the main podium and give a speech in the form of a god-awful striptease that NOBODY ASKED FOR. I will NOT provide links to what I'm talking about, because even *I* have standards...

10 comments:

Pinku-Sensei said...

I've heard of worse than what you're facing next weekend. Drum Corps International has its World Championships in Indianapolis during August, as does Gen Con. At least once, the two happened the same weekend. Two of my fandoms collided! If I had gone that year, I'd have split my time between the two. Since then, the two events have been scheduled on consecutive weekends. I guess both at one time was too much.

As for Weld running with Johnson, that's a very serious ticket should the Libertarians actually choose both. They are serious about being the alternative to Trump and whoever he picks (please, let it be either Gingrich or Palin--the laughs will keep coming all the way to Election Day!) Too bad neither will meet the approval of William Kristol; the Libertarians are insufficiently hawkish and interventionist for his taste. He'd be better off with Hillary Clinton, but he'll never admit it. No wonder liberals call him "Captain Always Wrong."

dinthebeast said...

Little Kid: Daddy, what's a libertarian?

Father: Well, son, that's a Republican who likes to smoke a little weed...

-Doug in Oakland

Pinku-Sensei said...

And is OK with marriage equality, maybe even birth control and legal abortion.

Paul Wartenberg said...

John Scalzi once wrote an epic put down of the "core" political philosophies, and had a huge middle finger for libertarian:

http://whatever.scalzi.com/2002/03/22/i-hate-your-politics/

Libertarians: Never got over the fact they weren’t the illegitimate children of Robert Heinlein and Ayn Rand; currently punishing the rest of us for it. Unusually smug for a political philosophy that’s never gotten anyone elected for anything above the local water board. All for legalized drugs and prostitution but probably wouldn’t want their kids blowing strangers for crack; all for slashing taxes for nearly every social service but don’t seem to understand why most people aren’t at all keen to trade in even the minimal safety net the US provides for 55-gallon barrels of beans and rice, a crossbow and a first-aid kit in the basement. Blissfully clueless that Libertarianism is just great as long as it doesn’t actually involve real live humans.

Paul Wartenberg said...

I'm still saying the worst thing about all this will be the damn traffic. If we had a sane, non-crook for a Governor in this state, we'd have that high-speed rail by now with a stop at that convention center...

Infidel753 said...

Well, sheeeeeeeiit.

There are actually Atlas Shrugged cosplayers?

How does one dress up as John Galt exactly? Or does the whole effect consist of the three-hour rants on the evils of helping people?

You'd think the Libertarians would hold their convention in a legal-marijuana state like my own Oregon. I'd be more than willing to dedicate my whole weekend to ignoring them.

Since you're stuck with it, all I can hope for is that the LP won't generate as much security clog-up as expected. It's not like they're a real, serious party. And don't worry too much about people high on MJ -- it makes people less violent, not more. It won't be like dealing with a bunch of boozed-up Republicans.

We your readers, at least, will honor your sacrifice and suffering, and look forward to your report on MegaCon.

Paul said...

I will document the atrocities to the best of my abilities.

And yes, there are Atlas Shrugged cosplayers. They're called BioShock fans.

Paul said...

The parties like to move their conventions to different places so they can check out the different strip clubs.

Pinku-Sensei said...

When I was last in Orlando (twice in 2003), there was a Coyote Ugly style bar downtown where the all-female waitstaff, including the bartenders, dance on the bar. It's not a real Coyote Ugly; the nearest one is in Tampa. If it's still there, I'm sure the conventioneers will enjoy. There was also a Hooters across the street.

Here's my favorite quote about Atlas Shrugged: "There are two novels that can transform a bookish 14-year-old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish daydream that can lead to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood ...in which large chunks of the day are spent inventing ways to make real life more like a fantasy novel. The other is a book about orcs."~Raj Patel in The Value of Nothing.

Paul Wartenberg said...

I don't know about the bars - I'm always sober never sane remember? - but there is a Hooters within five blocks of the convention center. International Drive from the convention center up to the Universal Studios theme park is all shops, restaurants, and hotels.