The Week in Editorial Cartoons – The Last Edition

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Crossposted at Daily Kos.  Look in the Comments Section of Daily Kos for more cartoons on the economy and sports.  Somehow, I couldn’t fit them in the main text of the diary.

THE WEEK IN EDITORIAL CARTOONS

This weekly diary takes a look at the past week’s important news stories from the perspective of our leading editorial cartoonists (including a few foreign ones) with analysis and commentary added in by me.

When evaluating a cartoon, ask yourself these questions:

1. Does a cartoon add to my existing knowledge base and help crystallize my thinking about the issue depicted?

2. Does the cartoonist have any obvious biases that distort reality?

3. Is the cartoonist reflecting prevailing public opinion or trying to shape it?

The answers will help determine the effectiveness of the cartoonist’s message.

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Glenn Beck’s Fear and Paranoia



Dave Granlund, Politicalcartoons.com

Special Note

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Due to growing commitments in real life (we all have one), I will not be posting this weekly diary for the next month or so.  Over the last six months, from a modest diary containing just a few editorial cartoons, this has become an-all consuming effort taking up all of my spare time during the week.  So, until I return on a weekly basis, I hope to find some time to post cartoons in other diaries and front page posts as well as perhaps writing an occasional single-issue diary as events warrant — as I did when Sarah Palin resigned, Senator Ted Kennedy passed away, and this past Friday when President Barack Obama unexpedtedly won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Over the next few weeks, if some of you would like to collaborate and continue posting this weekly diary, you are more than welcome to do so.  All I ask is that you have an appreciation of the fine work done by many of these brilliant cartoonists and that in writing this diary, you not take a minimalist approach.  If interested, please indicate your willingness to do so in the comments section and I can email you with some helpful hints.

Thanks to everyone who has read, commented in, offered words of encouragement and constructive criticism, and recommended this diary over the past many months.  While I hate to even temporarily discontinue this diary, I simply have to attend to a few things that I have been neglecting for several months now.

Now, on to this week’s edition.

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Introduction

Was President Barack Obama surprised by his selection as the recipient of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize?  Yes, of course.  As were almost all of us as well as the editorial cartoonists.  Nonetheless, they were mostly happy that the Nobel Committee chose a sitting American President for this prestigious honor.  If I can think of one good reason that he deserved the award, it was his Cairo, Egypt Speech which rejected the notion that a “Clash of Civilizations” between the Western and Islamic Worlds was inevitable — as his predecessor had strongly implied through his rhetoric and actions for a number of years.  

The utterly predictable and loony reaction by the Rightwing was a source of some delightful cartoons.  



Jim Morin, Miami Herald

Does the award put Obama in a bind when it comes to adopting a more muscular foreign policy?  Probably not.  But, I think many of his future actions will (fairly or unfairly) be seen through the prism of this award.  If this honor lessens or restrains the escalation of future military activities, that wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing in my book.



Tony Auth, Philadelphia Inquirer

Two other issues dominated this past week: the weak economy and Afghanistan.   If indeed the economic recession has ended, the anemic economic recovery — and one which does not portend well for the creation of future jobs — continues to garner very close attention from the cartoonists.  Over the past few weeks, I’ve specifically made it a point to include cartoons and animations by Mike Thompson of the Detroit Free Press because when we see economic progress in an industrial state like Michigan (where unemployment is much higher than the national average), it would be safe to assume that the recovery is taking hold all over the country.



Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Along with the economic and fiscal health of the country, the other major issue which will probably define the remainder of Obama’s Presidency is the ongoing War in Afghanistan. The complexity of the country’s politics, its long history and aversion to invading forces, and Obama’s yet-to-be-made strategic choices on how to proceed are reflected very well in the cartoons I’ve chosen.

Finally, the NASA spacecraft that “bombed” the moon, David Letterman’s apology-filled monologues, Sarah Palin’s upcoming book, and unsurprising wingnutty behavior by Republicans also resulted in some hilarious cartoons.  

Hope you enjoy the wide array of this week’s choices.

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1. CARTOONS OF THE WEEK



Bob Englehart, Hartford Courant

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Englehart echoed a sentiment often expressed on this blog over the past few days since the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Barack Obama

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhahhhahaha! That was my reaction when I read that President Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize. No, I wasn’t laughing in joy for him, although I am very happy for him and his family.  I was laughing at the anguish and pain this would cause the right wingnuts, the G-no-P in Congress, the Faux Snooze knuckleheads, the masochistic extreme conservative cretins who visit my blog.  Hahahahahahahahahaah.

This just goes to show you, if you’re lucky enough to follow the worst president in American history who had a completely abysmal foreign policy, who thought diplomacy was another word for a high school graduation ceremony, who was an inarticulate West Texas bonehead, you too can win a Nobel Peace Prize.

Replacing Bush’s Reign of Error is Sufficient Accomplishment” – John Nichols, The Nation



Bruce Plante, Tulsa World, see reader comments in the newspaper



Tony Auth, Philadelphia Inquirer



Joel Pett, Lexington Herald-Leader



David Cohen, main.nc.us/cartoons

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If you missed it, I wrote a diary this past Friday about RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s reaction to Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize — Michael Steele: ‘Where’s Bush’s Nobel Prize?’ — where you will find the first set of cartoons published just a few hours after the prize announcement.



R.J. Matson, St. Louis Post Dispatch



Ed Stein, edsteinink.com

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Stein summarizes the G.O.P.’s juvenile response to the award

I suppose, given the toxic climate of Washington these days, that it was too much to ask that everyone in America celebrate, at least for a day, an American winning a Nobel Prize… Once again, the Republican party challenged, not the president’s policies, but his legitimacy.  In his remarks, he (Steele) claimed that Obama had yet to accomplish anything.  This is the height of hypocrisy, given that the Republican party has done everything it can to prevent Obama from achieving any of his goals, no matter how worthy.

I’d argue that Obama has done a great deal on the world stage.  He has moved this country back into its traditional role, abandoning the ruinous go-it-alone policies that alienated us from our allies and prevented us from making diplomatic progress with our enemies.  His performance at the United Nations and at the G-20 summit restored much of the confidence, lost during eight years of American exceptionalism that marked the Bush era, that we intend to keep our place as the leader of the free world.



Dan Wasserman, Boston Globe



Stuart Carlson, Universal Press Syndicate



Patrick Chappatte, Cartoons on World Affairs



Nate Beeler, Washington Examiner



John Sherffius, Colorado, Boulder Daily Camera

Nobel NoBama



R.J. Matson, Roll Call



J.D. Crowe, Mobile Register

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Crowe pinpoints the small-mindedness of the Republican Party with one notable exception

The Nobel committee claimed Obama was awarded the medal for changing the “global mood.”  It’s no secret that Europe was sick and tired of Obama’s predecessor and were perhaps even more ready for change than American voters.

As a U.S. citizen, don’t you have to feel a little twinge of pride that your president is awarded such an honor? John McCain thinks so…

Yes, awarding a Peace Prize to Obama is premature, at best.  Yes, some conservatives would have a cow if Obama won a prize in his Crackerjacks. Some of these same people rejoiced when the U.S. lost the bid to host the 2016 Olympic Games, cheering it as an Obama loss.

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2. Roguish Palin and Other Wingnutty Behavior



Clay Bennett, Chattanooga Times Free Press, see reader comments in the newspaper, cartoon submitted by Sandy on Signal



Milt Priggee, Freelance Cartoonist



Deb Milbrath, Freelance Cartoonist



Charlie Daniel, Knoxville News Sentinel



Jeff Danziger, New York Times Syndicate



David Fitzsimmons, Arizona Star

Father of Palin’s grandson to pose for Playgirl



Steve Sack, Minneapolis Star-Tribune



John Darkow, Columbia Daily Tribune



Steve Sack, Minneapolis Star Tribune



Steve Greenberg, Ventura County Reporter



Taylor Jones, El Nuevo Dia (Puerto Rico)



Tom Tomorrow, This Modern World, see Letters to the Editor in Salon magazine

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Tom explains how he came to draw this cartoon

Secret Agent Beck vs. the menace of A.C.O.R.N!

… some notes on this one: the ACORN logo is based on the United Underworld logo from the 1966 Batman movie (in the original, the tentacles belong to an octopus at the center of the design).  The volcano headquarters are taken from “You Only Live Twice,” as are George Soros’ facial scar and Chairman Mao jacket (based on James Bond’s archnemesis from that movie, Ernst Stavro Blofeld).  Agent Beck’s predicament at the end of the cartoon is of course based on the classic scene from Goldfinger, leading to my one regret about this cartoon.

Read more

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3. Healthcare Reform: Reaching the Finish Line



Ed Stein, edsteinink.com

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Stein channels Thomas Frank (What’s the Matter with Kansas) and asks the question that Howard Dean often did during the 2004 Primaries

The Census Bureau has just released a study that shows that you are more likely not to have health insurance if you live in a state that generally votes Republican.  These states (Texas is the worst, surprise, surprise) send people to Congress who oppose health care reform, and their legislatures are stingier in providing child health coverage and Medicaid.  None of this should come as a surprise, given the overheated rhetoric we’ve been treated to recently.  Still, I’ve often wondered why we Americans are so easily persuaded to vote against our own best interests.  How is it that we continue to elect people who make policies that harm us?  We put people in power whose true constituency is not the voters in their districts, but the lobbyists for big business and Wall Street.  If the Roberts Court, as seems inevitable, grants corporations even more rights, this trend will only worsen.

Stein sounds pretty optimistic about getting some kind of reform

It’s beginning to look like we’ll get something in the way of health care reform.  Whether it ends up being something that actually works to cover everyone and reduce costs is another question entirely.  If it contains a universal mandate and eliminates the ability of insurance companies to exclude people, it will at least be a start to repairing our broken system, even if it doesn’t control costs.  Unfortunately, the Republican Party seems wholly uninterested in fixing anything.  All I can assume is that conservatives are so fixated on handing Obama a defeat, they’ve entirely stopped thinking about the common good.  It would be nice to believe that one of the two major political parties wants to be part of the solution, but I’ve heard nothing substantive from them — only absolute opposition to any change…

Private for-profit insurance companies will never create the level playing field required for universal health care without being forced to by law — in other words, by the government.

Florida ranked 50th among states for the percentage of its children covered by health insurance



Jeff Parker, Florida Today



Rob Rogers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette



Steve Benson, Arizona Republic



Stuart Carlson, Universal Press Syndicate



Dwane Powell, Raleigh News & Observer

Public Option Rain Delay



R.J. Matson, Roll Call



Matt Wuerker, Politico



R.J. Matson, Roll Call



Jimmy Margulies, New Jersey Record



Lloyd Dangle, Troubletown



David Cohen, main.nc.us/cartoons

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4. The Republicans: Petty Partisans



David Fitzsimmons, Arizona Daily Star



Tom Toles, Washington Post



Bill Day, Memphis Commercial Appeal



Paul Szep, Comics.com



Joel Pett, Lexington Herald-Leader



Nick Anderson, Houston Chronicle, see reader comments in the newspaper

Rush Limbaugh as Future Owner of the St. Louis Rams



Chris Britt, State Journal-Register (Springfield, IL)

John Boner



Taylor Jones, Politicalcartoons.com



Jim Morin, Miami Herald



Tim Egan, Deep Cover



Jeff Stahler, Columbus Dispatch



Clay Bennett, Chattanooga Times Free Press, see reader comments in the newspaper

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5. Barack Obama and the Democrats

Big Eater



Taylor Jones, Hoover Digest



Joel Pett, Lexington Herald-Leader



Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, cartoon submitted by Sandy on Signal



Petar Pismestrovic, Kleine Zeitung (Austria)



August J. Pollak, Some Guy With a Website  



R.J. Matson, Roll Call

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6. The Climate Change Debate: Warming Up?



David Fitzsimmons, Arizona Star

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With the Healthcare Reform debate having taken center stage for several months now, has the issue of Climate Change been forgotten by the White House?  Not exactly, as it has been doing a lot of work below the radar

It’s just one of the signs that the administration is stepping up its push to pass energy and climate legislation this year, as the Senate continues to wrangle with Obama’s other top domestic priority, health care reform. The House has already passed a bill.

Since the summer, when everyone else’s attention was focused on the heated town hall meetings over health care, Obama administration officials have been meeting with more than half the Senate, made calls to nearly 100 mayors in 17 states, and met with numerous governors, according to White House records.  Their goal, according to Carol Browner, the president’s assistant for energy and climate change, “is to get the bill moving and keep it moving.”

Climate Change Fix



Dan Wasserman, Boston Globe



Frederick Deligne, Le Pelerin (France)



Peter Nicholson, The Australian



Tom Toles, Washington Post

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7. The Afghanistan War: No Way Out



Bob Englehart, Hartford Courant, see reader comments in the newspaper

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Englehart is sympathetic to President Obama on the difficult issue of the War in Afghanistan as he sees the mess as having been created by the criminal negligence of the Bush Administration

Under-resourced.  Under-resourced?  That’s what President Obama’s Press Secky Robert Gibbs said the other day.  Afghanistan has been “under-resourced, under-funded, under-manned and ignored for years.” Well, we all know why.  That bicycle helmet-wearing, not-so-great-ape war criminal George W. Bush, the worst president of all time, squandered our blood and treasure on his asinine West Texas revenge act in Iraq.

“He tried to kill ma daddy,” said the Miscreant-in-Chief.  Well, those days are over, thank you Jesus, and now President Obama and we, the families who fight in Afghanistan, are stuck with the problem.

It’s President Obama’s war now and he’s about to put his stamp on it.  It might be too late for anybody to right that listing ship.  The time, 2001 to roughly 2003, may have passed for the most efficient action, but I’m hoping our “leaders”, and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to write that word without putting quotes around it, will be able to figure out something.



John Sherffius, Boulder Daily Camera



Ed Stein, edsteinink.com



Nick Anderson, Houston Chronicle, see the large number of reader comments in the newspaper  



Pat Oliphant, Universal Press Syndicate  



Adam Zyglis, Buffalo News



Dave Granlund, Politicalcartoons.com



Rex Babin, Sacramento Bee



Garry Trudeau, Doonesbury



Rex Babin, Sacramento Bee



Cam Cardow, Ottawa Citizen



Jim McCloskey, News Leader (Staunton, VA)



Mike Keefe, Denver Post



Dan Wasserman, Boston Globe



Steve Benson, Arizona Republic



Jack Ohman, Portland Oregonian



Lee Judge, Kansas City Star



R.J. Matson, St. Louis Post Dispatch



Jeff Danziger, New York Times Syndicate



Matt Wuerker, Politico



Tony Auth, Philadelphia Inquirer



Taylor Jones, Hoover Digest

Powder Kegs



Petar Pismestrovic, Kleine Zeitung (Austria)



Paresh Nath, Khaleej Times (UAE)

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8. Shoot the Moon



Mike Keefe, Denver Post

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Did NASA actually bomb the moon?  It depends on the definition of the word “bomb”

Nothing exploded, although two spacecraft – one about the size of a bus, the other a subcompact car – did crash on the surface of the moon…  

How would the moon have felt about it?  It’s hard to ask an inanimate, non-sentient object.  But using Sir Isaac Newton’s action-reaction law – the one that describes why a rocket moves one direction when its exhaust flows out the back in the opposite direction – researchers estimate that the two collisions combined would have the same effect on the moon that dropping an eyelash in the aisle would have on the speed and direction of a Boeing 747.



Drew Sheneman, Newark Star-Ledger



Cam Cardow, Ottawa Citizen



Jimmy Margulies, New Jersey Record



Patrick Corrigan, Toronto Star



Mike Peters, Dayton Daily News

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9. School Violence



David Horsey, Seattle Post-Intelligencer

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Longtime Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley has promised to do something about a perpetual problem: school violence.  Will his efforts succeed?

Mayor Daley today threw more money and police bodies at a daunting problem no closer to being solved than at any time during his 20-year tenure: the bloodbath on Chicago streets that’s destroying another generation of young people.

The videotape replayed around the world of 16-year-old Fenger High School student Derrion Albert being beaten to death during a brawl by students from rival neighborhoods has captured the attention of political leaders like so many other youth murders before it.



Adam Zyglis, Buffalo News



Nick Anderson, Houston Chronicle, see reader comments in the newspaper



Rex Babin, Sacramento Bee

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10. Sports Talk: A Rush Towards Madness



Mike Thompspn, Detroit Free Press, see reader comments in the newspaper

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Thompson stumbled upon a secret memo that potential owner Limbaugh has drafted for his players

FROM: Rams co-owner Rush Limbaugh

TO: Rams players

RE: Changes to the team

Dear players:

I’ve drafted a quick memo to inform you of the changes that will be taking place under my co-ownership.

Handoffs will no longer be allowed because running backs that get handoffs only become dependent on handoffs.  Henceforth, passing will be allowed only in the abstract sense, as in passing the blame, passing the buck, passing the bill onto future generations.

The socialist urge to work as a team must be avoided.  Set plays will be forbidden as they smack of Marxist central planning.  Instead, each player should rely on his own individual pluck and determination.  Should you find yourself in possession of the ball, you are instructed to carry said ball forward on your own as far as your talent and initiative will take you. Do not under any circumstances share the ball lest you contribute to the cycle of dependency among those players who are less fortunate.  Let such players pull themselves up by their own jockstraps.

Read the rest of this hilarious memo from El Rushbo to his future team

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11. David Letterman: Poking Fun at Himself



Jeff Darcy, Cleveland Plain-Dealer

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Does sex pay or what?  ‘The Late Show With David Letterman’ has received a ratings boost from all of the revelations of extortion and sex

Being involved in an extortion plot with the added sizzle of a a sex scandal has been bad for David Letterman’s home life, but it’s been very good for his business.

An estimated 5.7 million people watched Letterman’s CBS “Late Show” Monday night, when he addressed the scandal for the second time, and apologized to his wife and co-workers.

The audience for Monday’s show was up 19% over the season average of 4.8 million viewers, and up 36% over last Monday’s 4.2 million.

It was also “Late Show’s” third most-watched telecast this season.



Walt Handelsman, Newsday



Vic Harville, Stephens Media Group (Little Rock, AR)



Bruce Beattie, Daytona News-Journal



R.J. Matson, New York Observer



Adam Zyglis, Buffalo News



Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Not True at All!



David Fitzsimmons, Arizona Star



David Horsey, Seattle Post-Intelligencer



Jerry Holbert, Boston Herald

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12. Final Thoughts

Finally, the Yankee/Allied Invasion of France what started sixty five years ago is now complete.  Unlike D-Day June 6, 1944, no shots were fired to achieve this victory.  I’m sure the French people are ecstatic!



Dave Granlund, Politicalcartoons.com



Jeff Stahler, Columbus Dispatch



Steve Breen, San Diego Union-Tribune

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A Note About the Diary Poll

Fox Gallery – The Czech Brothers (Steve Martin and Dan Aykroyd)

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On October 11, 1975, NBC’s Saturday Night Live made its debut with George Carlin as the host and Andy Kaufman, Janis Ian and Billy Preston as guests.  Over the decades, SNL has provided loads of laughs poking fun at politicians and celebrities of all stripes.  

There are far too many cast members that I like but could only choose fourteen of them in the diary poll.  Among some of my favorites that I didn’t include are A. Whitney Brown, Chevy Chase, Chris Farley, Al Franken, Ana Gasteyer, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jon Lovitz, Garrett Morris, Laraine Newman, Don Novello, Joe Piscopo, Rob Schneider, Molly Shannon, and Kristen Wiig.  Here’s the list of all SNL actors who’ve been on the show since its inception.

Who is your favorite SNL cast member and why?  Any particular episodes, skits, characters, or hosts that you’ve liked over the years?

Share your memories of this wonderful television show.

[poll id=”

981

“]

10 comments

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  1. Clay Bennett, Chattanooga Times Free Press, see reader comments in the newspaper

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    Paul Szep, Comics.com

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    Tips, recommends, and the like here.  Thanks.  



  2. Cam Cardow, Ottawa Citizen

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    Pat Oliphant, Universal Press Syndicate



  3. Chip Bok, Akron Beacon-Journal

    • Inky99 on October 12, 2009 at 11:56 pm

    Thanks for that …..

    • TMC on October 13, 2009 at 12:01 am

    I can understands how this would be extremely time consuming. While I am sorry that you’ll not be doing a weekly round up, I will be looking for your diaries and essays on the news issue of the moment. Thanks for all the entertainment you have given to us both here and at DK. You always make me smile.

    • Heather on October 13, 2009 at 12:40 am

    The page stopped jumping up and down when I clicked on post.

    Hope to see you back at this when you get caught up.

    Thanks for the time you’ve put in and for the many many right on the money cartoons you post in comments in other diaries.

    I don’t know how you do that. I envision file cabinets in your brain.

  4. interesting compilation of political cartoons I have every seen anywhere.  Wow, just wow.  Thanks for doing this.

    • Inky99 on October 13, 2009 at 3:16 am

    and I suppose it shouldn’t, is how the majority of them seem to subscribe to the conventional wisdom/narrative as espoused by the usual “media”.

    I.E. Obama is really trying to pass serious healthcare reform for the benefit of the people (he’s not), but is only thwarted by those nasty Repubs and Blue Dogs, then the most blatant example being the ones regarding the Nobel Prize, all of them seeming to give Obama the benefit of the doubt and showing him as some innocent with a big weight on his shoulders.

    You know, the same old same old “us versus them” “divide and conquer” meme designed to keeping us blaming each other rather than the true Powers That Be.

    Which shouldn’t surprise me, but in my former life I always found political cartoons to be hard hitting almost to the point of being a tad subversive.

    It’s probably just me who has changed and not the cartoons.

  5. …I’ve been amazed by the prodigious effort you put in.  How do I ask you to please do less?  Please be comfortable.  Don’t burn out.

    I’ll look forward to your posting a comfortable amount.  And thank you very much.  

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