Wednesday, May 30, 2007

People no want think when read comics.

Fellow Attitude 3-er and damn good political cartoonist Eric Millikin points to a review of the "new" Blondie, now penned by a cartoonist named John Marshall:
Marshall calls Blondie a bit of Americana whose lasting appeal stems from the fact that it takes a humorous look at everyday problems. Dagwood overeats and goes to work every day, facing a demanding boss. Blondie is the all-American wife and mother, although she joined the work force in 1991 as the proud owner of Blondie's Catering.


Young agrees that the strip's humor relates to the world going on around us and purposefully shies away from politics and controversy.

"My dad told me a long time ago, "we want to win friends, not make enemies.' Our job is to make people laugh," he says.

Eric's dead-on reaction: "That’s right: Blondie relates to the world around us by purposefully shying away from politics and controversy."

Personally, I just feel like a complete jackass. For the 3+ years I've been doing this, I had no idea that truly great satire about "the world around us" means just looking at the insular lives of white suburbanites who obey gender and class roles rooted in 1930's "Americana."

Boy do I have egg on my face.

C.W.A. book to check out...

C.W.A.-ers are leading a revolution in the world of editorial cartooning, and it all starts with releases of high-quality collections of subversive cartoon madness.

Mikhaela's is out soon, and Masheka's is below. I can vouch, this is good stuff:

Deep Doodle

by Masheka Wood


Support independent publishing: buy this book on Lulu.

More on... movies...

Not much to say about this week's 'toon for my weekly "More On..." post (or as some might call it, my "Moron" post... ha-ha-ha... ahhhh). Just me making a few cracks about the spectacular pile of crap coming out of Hollywood this summer. Other people have done better cartoons on this subject than I, but I thought I'd put my two cents in because... well, that's all I could pull out of my ass this week.

It does bother me, though. Why exactly is it that every movie that is slightly popular these days has to turn into a trilogy? I probably should've thrown Shrek 3 and Rush Hour 3 into this week's 'toon. Seriously, Rush Hour 3? Why? Did anybody like Rush Hour 2? But what really, seriously drives me batshit insane is the seemingly endless parade of identical pop-"horror" turds that the viewing public is subjected to. My question is: does anybody really care if the hysterical idiots in these movies get killed? Can you imagine if, say, Bruce Lee were in one of these movies, and when the "scary part" comes, he screams like a little girl and runs out of the room with his arms flailing in the air?

OK, back to important stuff next week...

Monday, May 28, 2007

Fighting Words: 5/28/07 Cartoon

"Stuff I'd Rather Do Than Watch That Movie, #4"...

Previous episodes:

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Glory be...

You can close the book on my wavering on this cartoon from a couple weeks ago.

Either I'm totally friggin' psychic, or I'm the smartest man alive, or the "opposition party" in this country is just that predictably lily-livered and worthless. I can assure you the first two ain't true, if you didn't already know...


More on abortion, Gonzales v. Carhart...

Very quick list of articles and sources for this week's 'toon, cuz I'm swamped:
  • For analysis of the Court's surprise ruling (to me, anyway), check out Lyle Denniston. David Crary predicts the decision will open the floodgates for our more back-assward states to start passing legislation against abortion without any regard for women's health. And, Patrick O'Connor has President Jello-head's quote regarding possible congressional legislation allowing federal funding for abortion-rights or family planning organizations: "I will veto any legislation that... allows taxpayer dollars to be used for the destruction of human life" (except... y'know... if it's used for killin' brown people in Iraq... heh-heh).

  • For some excellent commentary on the decision, see Dalia Lithwick, Bonnie Scott Jones, Denniston, Yifat Susskind, and Joanna Grossman and Linda McClain (part one and part two).

  • Also, make sure you read Ruth Bader Ginsburg's incredible dissent in this case. It will be referred to in future cases.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Fighting Words: 5/21/07 Cartoon

"The Truth About the Opposite Sex"...

Similar previous 'toon:

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Kick-ass cartoons...

...from CWA-ers.

Matt Bors out-Tinky-Winkies them all.

Also, the dialogue in this week's Slowpoke just clicks for me.

I love dialogue that makes a meaningful argument and still comes off with just the right rhythm, so it reads almost like music. That's what I strive for every week in my 'toon. More often than not, I miss the mark... but that's what keeps me coming back to try it again.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

More on Iraq withdrawal...

I wanted this week's 'toon to be more of a comment on the appropriateness of withdrawal from Iraq given the current situation there, as opposed to yet another diatribe on the dubious morality of the war in general or how dumb it was for us to go there in the first place.

Here's some articles:
  • Check out this astounding report from Gareth Porter of Inter Press Service, which says that Democratic timetables for withdrawal have contained huge loopholes allowing for the indefinite continuation of military operations in Iraq in an effort to fight al-Qaeda (an idea supported by Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton). More importantly, it claims that the Sunni insurgents are a much more effective force against al-Qaeda in Iraq than the U.S. military. Apparently, the Sunni insurgents and al-Qaeda have some significant differences in their agendas, which has culminated in hostilities between the two groups. Of course, the administration has known this for a while, but has refused to pursue this option because it would take away their ability to blame Democrats for being "defeatist."

    Ned Parker agrees that supporting the Sunni insurgents is indeed a viable option, but he also seems to think that the administration is actually pursuing this now. However, Carpetbagger noted as recently as December of '06 that Dick Cheney was vigorously supporting the "80 percent solution," which essentially involved the U.S. supporting the Shiite majority's efforts to wipe out the Sunnis (which apparently is bordering on ethnic cleansing in some areas).

  • Here's something I wanted to work into the 'toon, but it was kind of off the subject a little. Lewis Seiler and Dan Hamburg answer the question of why there was no exit plan from Iraq: obviously, cuz we never planned on leaving. They quote Jimmy Carter, who agrees that "there are people in Washington... who never intend to withdraw military forces from Iraq... the reason that we went into Iraq was to establish a permanent military base in the Gulf region."

    As we know, President Dipshit has made it clear that we will not withdraw from Iraq "so long as ah'm the prez-uh-dint." Why is anybody buying this crap about "evaluating the surge in September?" David Peck wonders what "standard of failure" they're going to use when they do this evaluation. Also, Noam Chomsky (in a rare joint-interview with Howard Zinn) says: sure we can "win" in Iraq... if by "winning" you mean wiping out the entire country.

    See also a column by the great Helen Thomas on Bush's efforts to "run out the clock and pass the war on to his successor at the White House."

  • Check out Joseph Galloway on the damn Democrats trying to substitute their opinions for the judgment of the decider-guy.

    Also, Yossi Melman gives a bit of a schizophrenic assessment of the situation in Iraq, which tends to be the case with many such assessments. He argues that our withdrawal from Iraq will create a "domino" effect (nice choice of words, dude) that will totally destabilize the region. However, he also says that "to remain in Iraq is the worst decision possible."

Monday, May 14, 2007

Fighting Words: 5/14/07 Cartoon

"The World Cup of Poker"...

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

More on Bush's veto, Democratic response...

This is one of those cartoons on which I may very well have gone too far. It's hard to tell at this point exactly where the Dems are going with this whole "bringing the war to an end" thing they swear they're gonna do... but their history and some ominous rumblings tell me that they're already looking for a way to chicken out.

Let's call it a "premonition"...
  • Are the Democrats backing down on the timetable for withdrawal? Jonathan Weisman and Shailagh Murray say yes, and quote Pelosi as saying "We made our position clear. He made his position clear. Now it is time for us to try to work together." However, Weisman also produced a rather snotty piece of journalism in which he maintains that the Dems will be courting disaster if they try to confront Bush.

    Greg Sargent calls him on this, and correctly points out that the polls clearly show that the public is aching for someone to stand up to Bush on the war. Sargent also seems to think that it's too early to pass judgment on the Dems quite yet, as he reports that Pelosi is denying that they are backing down on the withdrawal language.

    Noam N. Levey and Janet Hook note that Republicans are starting to peel away from Bush on the war, but also say that the Dems will indeed drop the withdrawal timelines from the next spending bill.

    Jonathan Singer doesn't like the noises he's hearing from Democrats. Dick Pohlman also thinks they may have peaked.

  • Here's a good one: the first Weisman article above says that White House officials may be willing to accede to "benchmarks" instead of a "timetable," but that "they want them to be tied to rewards for achievement, not penalties for failure [my emphasis]." This is extremely funny to me... the Bush administration is like a bratty teenager who habitually brings home F's on his report card, but if he barely passes with a D, he wants a new car.

  • OK, so what exactly should the Democrats do on the supplemental spending bill? Send that sucker back to him. If he vetoes it, send it back to him again. Make little technical adjustments if you have to, but do not weaken it.

    David Sirota argues that "each volley will drive Bush further into isolation and consequently bring the war closer to an end. The less power a pro-war president has, the more we will be able to end the war."

  • Marcus Mabry has more on Bush's showing of 28% in the Newsweek poll, and Sheryl Gay Stolberg has Bush's "Commander Guy" quote. Eric Kleefeld also has these two stories, but points out that Dana Perino claims that President Numbnuts never called himself "The Commander Guy," only "A Commander Guy" (according to a revised White House transcript).

    How unfair. I'm sure he sounded much less stupid than he is being portrayed...

Monday, May 07, 2007

Fighting Words: 5/7/07 Cartoon

"The W-Files"...

Some more T.V. parodies:

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Dear God, I Hate the Yankees

And Clemens...

That is all.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

More on VA Tech, Gun Control...

Articles for this week's 'toon:
  • Personally, I respect the opinions of responsible, sensible hunters and gun owners, but it is logically clear to me that the "right to bear arms" is not a vital constitutional right... on par with, say, the right to free speech. It is a serious public safety issue, and guns are extremely dangerous tools that need to be heavily regulated.

    The Brady Campaign's Dennis Henigan debates gun control online, and makes an obvious point:
    The innocent victims at Va. Tech. did not die because a young person was deranged. They died because a deranged young person had access to guns. If he had been armed with a knife, or baseball bat, or shampoo bottle, 32 people would not have died.
    See also Alex Koppelman in Salon on why the Democrats dumped gun control from their agenda.

  • The 'toon was partially inspired by a quote from an early West Wing episode, my favorite argument that I've ever heard on the gun control debate. It comes after the first season, when white supremacists try to kill Charlie Young and end up hitting Bartlett, and press secretary C.J. is giving a briefing to the White House Press Corps. It underscores perfectly just how preposterous that aspect of the pro-gun argument is:
    There were 36 homicides last night. 480 sexual assaults. 3411 robberies. 3685 aggravated assaults, all at gun point. And if anyone thinks those crimes could have been prevented if the victims themselves had been carrying guns, I only remind you that the President of the United States was shot last night while surrounded by the best-trained armed guards in the history of the world.

  • A lot of the rhetoric in the 'toon was drawn from the "Facts" pages for the Brady Campaign and the NRA... the Brady page makes this excellent point:
    Ironically, the NRA forbids its own members from carrying guns into the NRA's national convention, but they want to force the rest of us to let those people carry guns into our schools, restaurants, parks, sports stadiums, streets, and anywhere else they want.
    However, the most valuable thing I read was this priceless "editorial" on the CNN site by Ted Nugent. Reads like it was written by a 5 year-old...