A while back, I went to San Francisco to report a piece about some protests happening in town. The conflict, as narrated in the local papers, puzzled me. Although it supposedly centered on private buses for tech workers, the concerns had a more broadly political air. This was not surprising--San Francisco is the capital of broad politics--but I couldn't see where ideological disputes actually arose. Protesters painted themselves as grass-roots liberals, speaking up for poor, creative, or countercultural outsiders.