May 31, 2011

Will He Set His Hair on Fire?

Ross Gosse, 5/30/11:
As you may have heard, noted philanderer (and possessor of one of the truly magnificent heads of hair in politics) John Edwards is being investigated by a grand jury for improperly funneling his campaign funds to paying off the mother of his illegitimate child.

What you didn't hear -- and wouldn't have connected to John Edwards even if you did -- is that the 300-year-old anchor of pirate Edward Teach (aka Blackbeard) was recently raised, and is destined to be displayed in the North Carolina Museum of History.

The two things still have nothing to do with each other...unless you remember the cartoonist's mantra: when a deadline is looming, Two Things Make a Cartoon.

May 30, 2011

First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriage

Ken Catalino, 5/28/11:
This cartoon could possibly make sense if one assumes that Obama has been trying desperately to hide his involvement in Obamacare.

I also have the sense that Catalino could have gone somewhere with the "love child" theme -- the creation of which, of course, first requires that he screw somebody, which could make for a pointed cartoon -- but didn't actually connect any of the required dots to make that kind of message.

Eat Pizza, Win Tokens

Jeff Koterba, 5/28/11:
A group can be proven to have absolutely no racist tendencies merely by the presence of one minority member, somewhere within it.

And the Tea Party never had the word "Quisling" in their dictionary to begin with, since it's a foreign word.

Supply and Demand

Chuck Asay, 5/29/11:
Now, Asay isn't saying that the US should charge the descendents of slaves for bringing them, free of charge, to the Marvelous Land of Opportunity (TM). He's not saying that at all.

He's just sayin', is all....

May 29, 2011

Where Was He and What Did He Know?

Mike Lester, 5/25/11:
As an anonymous reader pointed out, Bush was on vacation on his Texas ranch on the day after Katrina hit and the levees broke -- and, one could note, Katrina was seen coming many days ahead of time, which allowed much more scope for pre-planning.

Obama, on the other hand, was on a working international tour at the time of the -- unexpected, one might note -- Joplin tornadoes.

So this is not precisely a fair comparison...but, then, when do we ever go to editorial cartoonists for fairness?

May 28, 2011

At Least He's Not Throwing Her Under a Bus

Scott Stantis, 5/27/11:
In case you weren't paying attention, the political party threatening to destroy Medicare as we know it is the Democrats.

Pay no attention to that nice Rep. Ryan and his darling plan; that's not at all what we're talking about here!

28 Electoral Cycles Later

Clay Bennett, 5/27/11:
Flee! Flee in horror from the terrifying, flesh-eating Republican!

(And embedding the image of a zombie in a "they're trying to scare you" cartoon is like the world's biggest "I'm rubber, you're glue" imaginable.)

Oh, Mama, Mama Look There!

Chuck Asay, 5/27/11:
Remember, any two things make a cartoon. If they have a word in common, even better!

Pointing out that the federal money is available because Florida's governor decided he really didn't want high-tech investment and its messy high-paid jobs in his state, or that California has had many years to build more jails to house all of the people it wants to lock up...well, that would just be petty, wouldn't it?

Remember: government is the problem. Left to themselves, the people will spontaneously create free-market bullet trains and prisons!

May 27, 2011

I Don't Want to Go Among Mad People

Clay Bennett, 5/26/11:
Now, that just isn't true.

Lobbyists have at least as much influence with the judicial and executive branches as they do with legislatures.


Bado, 5/26/11:
You'd think that, after 50 years, people would learn how to spell "amnesty."

Sadly, this is not the case.

But one does have to wonder about Bado's editors....

I'll Have What He's Having

Chuck Asay, 5/26/11:
I had a reader request to feature this one, from a reader who I think wants to remain anonymous but was annoyed by the way Asay has his elephant character talk about elections "coming up" while ignoring the one that actually took place Tuesday.

That didn't bother me, honestly. As I noted the first time I commented on Asay's cartoons, back at my other blog a couple of years ago, Asay is one of the great monomaniacs, and there is no problem that cannot (in his mind) be solved by just drilling for oil more places. So this is just yet another expression of pure Asayism.

But it is cute that Asay thinks that the 2012 election will be about drilling for oil, and that the vast American public is going to be strongly in favor of more deepwater wells in places like the Gulf of Mexico. I'm not sure if that's monomania, a cynicism about the American memory, or pure craziness, but I personally doubt "drill, baby, drill" will be more than a side issue a year from now. (Medicare, on the other hand....)

And he still doesn't understand how global markets work, either.

May 26, 2011

News Flash

Nick Anderson, 5/25/11:
It's incredibly shocking when athletes already known for being insanely competitive will do shady and illegal things to win.

Folks, sports is about winning at all costs; that's the whole point of it. An athlete not willing to dope to get an edge is a quitter.

May 25, 2011

Gone With the Wind

Tom Toles, 5/25/11:
Does it make me a bad person if I find it deeply ironic that the part of the country hit by unlikely and extreme weather over the past six months is exactly that swath dominated by politicians who both deny that climate change -- the kind that produces unlikely and extreme weather -- is happening and want to refuse all government aid to people in trouble?

It does, doesn't it?


Bill Schorr, 5/22/11:
Ha! Those young whippersnappers can't get a job because they're feckless, lazy yahoos! Why, I reckon that they wear their pants low and listen to that there "rap" music, too!

But why is the college dean/president/whoever announcing the time that graduation begins at graduation, pray tell?

Is That the Tower of Strength?

Lisa Benson, 5/24/11:
Isn't it annoying how rich white Westerners always think everything is about them?

Well, Christians are exactly the same way, only with added Crusades and Inquisitions and Raptures.

The Tweedle Boys

Charlie Daniel, 5/24/11:
Meanwhile, in Knoxville, cartoonist Charlie Daniel is making a principled, bold stand against drugs and crime!

It's a good thing there wasn't any real news, such as a devastating tornado 700 miles to the west, that kept him from such a shocking cartoon!

Adventures in NIMBY-land

John Auchter, 5/24/11:
Everyone wants to use energy, but no one wants to generate it.

And just wait until he hears about fracking!

May 24, 2011

Don't Ask About the Blind, Lame, and Halt

Steve Breen, 5/20/11:
In what kind of theology does Heaven extend to unbelievers but doesn't include the standard "brand new and perfect" body?

Or is this the discount Heaven -- believers get the whole shebang, and virtuous pagans get preferred parking and coupons for half off Purgatory?

Neighborhood Watch

Joe Heller, 5/20/11:
If you want to know exactly how smart the average American is, this cartoon provides a sobering view: the rich, accused-rapist, now-former head of one of the most powerful institutions in the world (and the leading candidate for the next French President) is "French IMF guy," while the blandly-unfaithful TV-mook Jesse James gets name-checked correctly.

Where Can I Get One of Those Machines?

John Cole, 5/23/11:
Any two facts make an editorial cartoon -- no exceptions. The less the facts have to do with each other, the better.

That's Some Leak, Honey

Ann Cleaves, 5/23/11:
You see, the Mississippi floodwaters are exactly the same as the debt ceiling, in that flood water rises up from the ground and the debt ceiling is (metaphorically) over our heads, and so the flood gushes down the too-much-spending stairs to fill up the living room of government spending.

But if we slash spending on the military and Medicaid, the Mississippi will return to its banks and we can move upstairs into the bedrooms of fiscal prudence, leaving the poor, sick, and old (and anyone the military was protecting us from) to squat on the river banks until the metaphor completely collapses.

Speaking in Tongues

Terry Wise, 5/22/11:
Obama's foreign policies -- probably primarily his two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine problem, based on the pre-1967 borders -- are so far out of the mainstream as to seem gobbledygook, as evidenced by the fact that nearly every informed expert who isn't a current elected official of the US, Israel, or the Palestinian Authority vaguely agrees with that outline.

Either that, or Wise is making a really lame, really out-of-date "Ebonics" joke...and I wouldn't put that past him.

Eye on Who?

MStreeter, 5/21/11:
Anyone else have the strange sensation that this piece, without any changes, could have run in the Onion?

Maybe I'm the only one....

May 23, 2011

"[In a] Jam" Would Also Have Been Acceptable

John Deering, 5/21/11:
Normally, I would lead off with an insult about Akansans -- Deering cartoons for the Democrat-Gazette, out of Little Rock -- but, instead, I'll just stand in awe of one of the most subtle cartoons I've seen in a while, one which assumes the reader already knows:
1) Nicholas Sarkozy is the current President of France
2) Sarkozy's wife is the former singer Carla Bruni
3) Sarkozy is head of the French right-wing party UMP
4) The next French Presidential election is on April 22, 2012
5) Sarkozy's expected strongest opponent in that election, from the Socialist party, would have been Dominique Strauss-Kahn
Mais oui!

Judge Not, Lest Ye Be Judged

Chan Lowe, 5/21/11:
It's not every day that a news event allows a cartoonist to slip in a double entendre like that into a family paper. (Extra points for the doubling on both "judgment" and "raptured.")

I wonder if Harold Camping has quite realized yet that his major contribution to the world will be as a punchline?

Bronson Beta Is Less Incredible Than You'd Expect

John Sherffius, 5/20/11:
Oh, sure, it sounds all cosmic and inspiring now. But when it gets all Balmer-Wylie on your world, you'll be singing another tune, mister.

May 21, 2011

Somewhere Out There Is the Mirror Image of This Cartoon

Bob Gorrell, 5/20/11:
Demanding that a Palestinian state be "nonmilitarized" and that Israel's security must be maintained before anything else is, as we all know, a completely anti-Israel position.

In this Cartoon, the Unseen Housekeeper Represents the Downtrodden Third World

Ted Rall, 5/20/11:
When in doubt, a good ol' "bankers are evil" joke will slay the crowd everytime.

Extra points if the banker in question is French and heads an organization lefties keep wishing would just give money away instead of selfishly asking for it to be repaid all the time.

Flood Warning

Signe Wilkinson, 5/20/11:
So nature just sits there and takes it, not even trying to get out of the water. But humans try to adapt their environment to suit their needs, and mitigate problems as much as possible.

From the tone of the cartoon, I suspect Wilkinson sides with nature.

And why, I ask, does this make me think of "As long as it's inevitable, you might as well lie back and enjoy it"?

May 20, 2011

Swap Meet

Clay Jones, 5/18/11:
Which is creepier: the doll-sized, dead-eyed Obama wielded as the living embodiment of "Romneycare," or the Quasimodo-esque Gingrich toting around three red-lipped bimbos wives?

Or is that a question like "Would you prefer to be strangled, or shot in the head?"

Bugging Out

Jeff Parker, 5/17/11:
This joke will only make sense to people who are currently in Florida, or have been there in the past month. But, trust us, it is funny. And those damn bugs are everywhere.

Use This Substitution EVERY Time You See The Word "Love" -- It's Fun!

Deb Milbrath, 5/19/11:
Well, duh, Deb. You'd think you'd never seen a euphemism before.

This is akin to a cartoon strenuously asserting that people with "nice personalities" are, in fact, massively fat.

Would You Let Him Be Your Kindergarten Cop Now?

Steve Greenberg, 5/19/11:
Another bland Shwarzenegger cartoon.

Yes, everybody remembers The Terminator. (At least, everyone who's the age of the average political cartoonist.) But plenty of people also remember movies with such cartoon-friendly titles as Predator, Twins, and (ahem) True Lies.

C'mon, folks, this is a famous guy with a secret ten-year-old child -- this is red meat here, and you're completely fumbling it.

May 19, 2011

Double Vision

Steve Kelley and Mike Luckovich, 5/18/11:

If a joke is so obvious that another cartoonist can make it in exactly the same way on the same day, it might just be time to take five minutes to think up another concept.

Also, when your big joke was first used for a porn movie more than a generation ago, this is another sign that you need to try slightly harder.

May 18, 2011

Where's Sharktopus When You Need Him?

David Fitzsimmons, 5/16/11:
Please! Sharks with frickin' laser beams. The emphasis is important.

Full Steam Ahead!

Dick Locher, 5/17/11:
Any cartoonist can do a Titanic metaphor -- and they all have.

But only Dick Locher would have the balls to show the Titanic shredding the iceberg, because that's just the kind of magnificent bastard he is.

When the Student Is Ready, the Teacher Will Appear

Dennis Draughton, 5/17/11:
This is another logic puzzle masquerading as a cartoon, requiring fiendish concentration and much deep thought to comprehend.

Our postulates:
A) North Carolina is laying off some large number of teachers.
B) North Carolina is also reducing class size -- down to one, possibly -- for each of the remaining teachers.

Deduction: NC is forcing those students to go all Battle Royale to compete for the few remaining educational slots available. And so that teacher is right to be so scared of her sole student.

Who Feeds the Pudgeballs?

Jeff Stahler, 5/17/11:
America's long road back to a shame-based morality begins today.

And the only reason Red McNasty feels free to say that is that she knows, even if those kids do try to shank her, they can't catch her on those fat little legs.

May 17, 2011

Look! Up in the Frickin' Sky!

Bill Mutranowski, 5/9/11:
I might be going out on a limb here, but I would wager a large sum of money that the vast majority of people who have read the Bible -- particularly in the god-fearing US of A -- do not think of Jehovah [1] as a comedic villain played by Mike Myers.

[1] Yes, I know that scholarly opinion now believes it should be "Yahweh." But "Jehovah" is a better name, and what supreme being would ever trade down to a suckier name?

Round and Round They Go

Angelo Lopez, 5/10/11:
Perhaps the reason Obama is getting less done than his supporters hoped is because he's spending all of his time in the middle of a weird Escher-esque protest against himself.

No, really, why is Obama in the middle of this procession, anyway? Is he really protesting himself?

Art School Dropout

Paul Fell, 5/11/11:
If there's anyone out there who did manage to transfer credits from an undergraduate arts college to law school, I'd really like to hear about it -- that's pretty impressive.

And I'd think anyone who could pull off a scam like that would make an excellent lawyer, and not need to be begging in the streets.

(By the way, I think "NU" is the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.)

Big Louie and the Violin Kid

Rick McKee, 5/15/11:
Investors don't care at all about debt ceilings -- the US is the only major country that even has one. What they don't like is the thought of a possible default, which is what would happen if the ceiling isn't raised.

Oh, and that thuggish character? That's you, and me, and the Chinese government, and some sovereign wealth funds, and several million other random people and institutions -- T-bills are the most widely held financial instrument on the planet.

Also, on the other side of this cartoon's metaphor, loan sharks love people that don't pay off their debts, keep running them higher, and keep making payments. Those are the very best customers.

Mostly Retarded Insinuations

Lisa Benson, 5/16/11:
It's so true -- the ridiculous, even socialistic rules put in place by the Affordable Health Care Act are destroying Medicare as we speak:
  • Several consumer protection rules took effect in September, including allowing children to stay on their parents' health insurance plan until age 26, banning lifetime coverage limits and ending denial of coverage for children because of pre-existing health conditions.
  • A temporary insurance program was created to help provide coverage to "high risk" patients with pre-existing conditions.
  • States that opted to add low-income people and families to their Medicaid rolls who had not previously qualified received additional federal funds.
  • All new insurance plans were required to cover preventative services such as mammograms without charging a deductible, co-pay or coinsurance starting in September.
  • Small businesses are now eligible for tax credits to help provide insurance benefits to their workers that are worth up to 35 percent of the insurance payment.
  • Health insurance companies -- including Aetna Inc and WellPoint Inc -- face new limits that call for at least 85 cents of every premium dollar to go toward medical costs, with 15 cents for overhead and salaries.
  • Small group or individual plans must spend at least 80 cents per dollar on care.
  • Drugmakers must offer a 50 percent discount on brand name drugs for elderly or disabled Americans enrolled in Medicare's Part D prescription drug plans who also hit the so-called "doughnut hole" coverage gap. Generic drugs will also cost less.
How ghastly! Twenty-six year olds allowed to have health care! Lifetime coverage limits made illegal! Added funds to states to help pay for Medicaid! Insurance for preventative services!

I shudder at the thought of small businesses being afflicted with tax credits, and that insurance companies are now required to spend most of their money on actually giving health care to people!

May 15, 2011

I'm Holding Out for a Cherry Ford

Henry Payne, 5/13/11:
You couldn't ask for a clearer message from the "saving energy is for girls and wimps" mind-set than this cartoon -- efficient cars are the automotive equivalent of those skinny cans of Pepsi.

Proctologists: Your Go-To Guys for Doctor Jokes for Three Generations

Scott Stantis, 5/13/11:
Not having to die from minor infections and not having to choose between paying for food or medication are horrible, invasive things that the current crop of Republican presidential candidates are eager to save us all from.

Also, Romney is totally a hypocrite -- and so unlike the normal run of politicians in that, as well!

Cut Along Dotted Line

Bado, 5/13/11:
Yup, that's what she said.

So...where's the joke?

May 14, 2011

Choose Your Own Meaning Comics

Henry Payne, 5/13/11:
This is the rare editorial cartoon that needs more labels. Clearly, the dog is the US armed forces -- or maybe the SEALS specifically, or maybe the US in general...

Wait, let me start again. The red-headed boy must be

Look, somebody wants somebody else to go get terrorists...unless that's meant to be a distraction from something else that Payne didn't specify.

It's a lovely loose, flowing drawing, though, especially on that dog -- there's nobody on the scene today who can touch Payne when it comes to drawing dogs.

A Common Attitude Among Republicans

Rob Smith, Jr., 5/14/11:
To translate: "Golly, those black people do like President Obama, don't they? And don't they shuck and jive very entertainingly, as well!"

You can almost smell the condescension dripping off of this cartoon.