posterTo take a break from the Weekly Crap, as well as the political poo-flinging: Jane has kindly given the OK for me to use this space to shill for EschaCon ’08, the liberal blog extravaganza taking place in Philadelphia, March 28-30 of this very year (which would be 2008). It’s a weekend of politics, music, conversation, organizing, and unrepentant frequent swearing. Come on down if you can — FDLers more than welcome. Because while the con is connected with the blog of the Baby Blue Cherub, the Lake will represent. Panelists include the divine Watertiger, FDL alum TRex, some "Thers" character, and of course Jane Hamsher her own bad self!

The main events are on Saturday the 29th. These are the panels we have so far (information complete as of now, but we may be adding some more guests). We’ll kick off Saturday morning with a panel on Humor and Politics: speakers include, um, me, who will be moderating; The Rude Pundit, who is quite Rude; Ted Rall, whose cartoons you may be familiar with; TRex, who yez all know; and Watertiger of the Fine Photoshops.

Following that is "Having an Impact," hosted by Jane (whose blog I don’t suppose you need a link to): also on that panel is the astounding Digby, the redoubtable John Amato, and the irrepressible NTodd (it’s true, go ahead, try to repress him. You just can’t do it).

Next we’ll have lunch with what looks to be a Special Guest Star. After that it’s a discussion of Teh Media hosted by Susie Madrak, featuring Will Bunch, Eric Boehlert, Doug Smith, Athenae (of First Draft, & one of the best writers on the Net, for my money), and Bay Area activist Spocko — a guy who got pissed off and did something about it, and (heh heh heh) who has some fun stories to tell about the recently canned wingnut radio loon Melanie Morgan.

Next up — there’s more! — an Economics panel with Atrios, the brilliant Echidne of the Snakes, and Paul Krugman (whom I believe has some columnist gig somewhere or other besides his blog).

After that it’s dinner and then A Show: a rocking good time with the shredding sounds ofWhiskey Ina, the astounding Filkertom, and a then The Rude Pundit Live, doing his thing and tearing up the joint. Our headliner is Hamell on Trial: raucous, hilarious, unforgettable. Video from Hamell below (warning: not safe for work, and many other places, either, for that matter).

EschaCon ’08 is what the liberal blogs are all about. Lots of fun, lots of brilliance, and with the people first: the speakers are going to do a bit of shtick, but most of what’ll go on is conversation with the audience. There’s no corporate or institutional sponsorship, it was all put together by volunteers, members of an online community who just one day decided, "hey, let’s have a convention." And so we did. Our first one, in 2005 (yes, we were before Yearly Kos, no kidding) was a ton of fun, just a blast.

So drop in if you can. You can do everything, or just some stuff: see the menu here. The concert is 10$ for conferees, and open to the public for $15. Love to see all you lovely FDL folks there!