Freegin' the Convention


Jack Shafer, of, while making his argument that the press should boycott the conventions, wrote:

... he may argue that meeting all the important politicos up close at the convention will produce future news dividends. But he'll pout if you ask him whether the intimacy justifies the expense, which can easily exceed $3,000 per reporter for a bare-bones visit. (A single seat in the designated workspace area at a convention can cost more than $1,000, and an Internet connection is $850. Snacks purchased at the convention make ballpark food look affordable.)

HCN is not subscribing to that notion. We drove here in an aging, tiny Chevrolet; we're staying for free in the home of a very gracious host; and we even have free office space to use right downtown. And, prodded by intern Rob Inglis, we're also trying a limited form of "Freeganism" for sustenance. Okay, it's really limited, because we're not diving into any dumpsters or anything. But here's what we got yesterday with very little effort (and not one cent from the expense account):

two veggie smoothies; two cups of shi-shi tea; four superfood bars; one Theo dark chocolate bar; a package of Tek-Gum; a $10 card to purchase snacks in the Pepsi Center (probably not Coke products); two Diet Cokes; four scoops of ice cream with red-white-blue sprinkles; a highlighter pen.

$3,000 expense accounts? Pshaw!


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