Monday, July 30, 2007
Let me say up front that I am the owner of an awesomely cute dog. I frequently shower her with embarrassing displays of affection, the details of which I will not go into here. What Michael Vick was doing to those dogs grosses me out as much as anyone. Yet I find it profoundly disturbing how much more outraged people are about the ugly world of dogfighting than they are about, well, inhumane acts toward other humans.
Animals, understandably, elicit our sympathy because they are innocent and helpless. People are easier to blame for their circumstances. Also, they aren't furry (well, most of them aren't, anyway).
Longtime readers will recognize that this cartoon builds on an older strip, "No Puppies for Oil" which envisioned a world in which puppies would be the primary victims of war in Iraq. See also "News Abducted!" from a few weeks ago for another instance of Cute Things getting all the attention.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
First FOX and CBS pulled the plug, then local affiliates of NBC and ABC refused to run this innocuous and rather charming commercial for Trojan condoms. Frankly, I am more offended by the hypocritical, faux-sanctimoniousness of these lite smut-peddling networks than I would be by any condom ad, no matter how in-your-face. (And this one most certainly is not.) It's 2007, and we still can't talk about jimmy hats? Not even via computer-animated pigs? What the hell is wrong with us? Actually, that's a rhetorical question.
Monday, July 23, 2007
...cartoon for a moment, reader Adam sends in these other sordid tales of tort reform hypocrisy:
My two favorite tort reform Hypocrites of all time:Apparently they both thought they were entitled to the windbag exception (see cartoon).
Extra! Extra! My next collection, Slowpoke: One Nation, Oh My God! will be available in April 2008 from Ig Publishing, a great new progressive outfit that also publishes Frameshop blogger Jeffrey Feldman.
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
This one was inspired by both SiCKO, arguably Michael Moore's finest movie to date, and a recent NYT piece about "rebel economists" who dare question the so-called free-market orthodoxy held by a majority in the discipline (as if markets were not intricate legal constructions in the first place).
Though some in our binary-thinking culture may perceive that I'm arguing against capitalism in this cartoon, I'm not. I am trying to show how overzealous worship of the "magic of the market" becomes a religious belief system, one that is about as tethered to reality as the teachings of various cults. We don't think of the disciples of Milton Friedman as cult members; after all, they look perfectly normal in their suits, and tend to keep their hair under control. (No offense to the well-groomed cult members out there.) But when a top-down ideology trumps -- nay, blinds people to an empirical understanding of the world from the ground up, fills them with purpose and wonder, and becomes the unassailable answer to anything, well, you're dealing with a form of faith.
Here's an excerpt from that NYT article illustrating this point:
Mr. Card is by no means on the fringe, but he said his research on the minimum wage in New Jersey "caused a huge amount of trouble." He and Alan B. Krueger, an economist at Princeton, found that contrary to what free-market theory predicts, employment actually rose after an increase in the minimum wage.How dare these mere mortals question The Hand!
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
I had wanted to finish this week's cartoon before leaving for DC last week, but alas, that didn't happen. So I wound up writing and drawing this one in bits and pieces over the first few days of the convention. What I thought was a simple concept somehow mutated into something ornate, and I missed a luncheon featuring the cuddly Mark Shields because of it. Then I discovered that the laptop I brought didn't have my scanner driver installed, which brought me close to spontaneous combustion. Fortunately my host had a scanner, so a crisis was averted. Oh how I suffer for my art!
Monday, July 09, 2007
A bumper sticker reading: "I am my pig's mother."
As I noted in my last post, I've spent the past several days drinking and eating banquet chicken in DC with just about every political cartoonist in the country. This was my first AAEC convention, and it was quite a blast. I won't even attempt to list the dozen or more people I finally met after years of wanting to meet them, though I will say one highlight was being seated at the same table as Tom Toles at the National Press Club. I also got to shake hands with the venerable Helen Thomas, who was very gracious even though she was on her way out the door. Then, at a reception on Saturday, "Fighting Words" cartoonist Ben Smith told me to look behind me. I turned around only to be staring into the smiling face of Dennis Kucinich. It's not every day one turns around to see the smiling face of Dennis Kucinich. It was a little startling, to be honest. He was the keynote speaker at the awards dinner, and was making the rounds beforehand. He introduced us to his wife, a 29 year-old British amazon who towered at least a foot above him. I later saw her in the women's restroom; her head loomed above the top of the stall.
I must say, the Cartoonists With Attitude slideshow and signing at Borders went smashingly. Turnout was great, with lots of people standing in various nooks and crannies to watch. I don't know that I would stand on my feet for ninety minutes to watch myself, so that was pretty flattering. And boy, did they buy books!
As per usual, a special shout-out to Warren and his cats for their unparalleled hospitality.
Sorry for the massive delay in posting this to the blog, but I was in DC for the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists' 50th anniversary bash for much of last week.
I will just state briefly that the media obsession with that missing British girl (and other attractive children whose disappearances we are regularly subjected to) goes beyond tawdry: it is sick. Nicholas Kristof recently had a column in the Times that said hundreds of thousands of children are starving to death in the Congo because their mothers can't go into the fields without getting raped by soldiers. Meanwhile, celebrities are donating millions to find this missing British kid. And if she is found thanks to this collective effort, we can pat ourselves on the back, secure in the knowledge that all is right with humanity.
Monday, July 02, 2007
I'll be at this too...
*Cartoonapalooza: Fireworks in Pen and Ink!*
Meet ten of the nation’s best political cartoonists as they discuss their most controversial cartoons. Cartoonapalooza, the kick-off event for the 50th anniversary convention of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists (AAEC), is a rare opportunity for the public to meet prize-winning cartoonists from across the country as they gather in Washington, D.C. for their annual convention. The evening will begin with a cocktail reception before the panel discussion. Featured cartoonists will include Ted Rall, Tom Toles, Mike Luckovich, Mike Peters, Rob Rogers, Jack Ohman, Ruben Bolling, Ann Telnaes, Keith Knight and Mark Fiore. Door prizes at the reception will include signed original cartoons and books.
Cartoons & Cocktails and the Association of American Cartoonists Present: *Cartoonapalooza: Fireworks in Pen and Ink!*
*Date: Tuesday, July 3, 2007
Time: 6:30 PM*
Location: Renaissance Mayflower Hotel, 1127 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington DC 20036
Tickets: $25 in advance/$35 at door (PayPal available http://editorialcartoonists
Proceeds from this event will go to support Newspapers In Education’s “Cartoons for the Classroom” program
Order tickets online (and download the poster by Mikhaela Reid) at http://editorialcartoonists
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