1.) Because without the Underground Literary Alliance there's staleness and sameness. One can look at the MediaBistro site and see literature as it's become (banner ads for MBA programs blaring from the home page): institutionalized literature; bureaucratized art. Look at that site and you see the death of art; art not as a living, breathing, alive and creative organism, but art kept behind walls, enclosed within cubicles inside sterile office buildings; art which has been tamed and quantified. Art as merely a job, a task, means to an end-- instead of as glorious end itself!
To the ULA, art is all-- the power of the word is the highest priority. We writers (poets, playwrights, actors, cartoonists) are in charge of our organization. Where are the hierarchies, the pencil pushers and cost-analysts, the kind of artistically-dead suits who control from the top down the established lit organizations? We don't have any!
2.) The ULA is injecting charisma into the lit scene. As in pop/rock music, charisma doesn't come out of a boardroom. The great charismatic musical artists have all been from the lower levels of society-- especially the most popular and influential like Elvis and the Beatles. Charisma can't be manufactured in a university. It's a free-flowing, organic thing.
We're artistic charismatics, fueled by our own enthusiasm. The ULA is filled with dynamic personalities. This is what we bring to literature's table-- what it most needs.
Many of these new literary personalities will be on display in Philadelphia on July 15th, 16th, and 17th.