The Week in Editorial Cartoons – The New Wisconsin Workers Anthem

(2 pm. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

Crossposted at Daily Kos and The Stars Hollow Gazette

CLICK HERE TO PLAY THE VIDEO

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Rockthedub.com was scheduled to film a video for this new anthem yesterday in Madison, Wisconsin

While we don’t keep it political on RTD all the time, we’re not just all music all the time.  We come from the era of Public Enemy, where the music was a tool that helped the outside world understand what was going on.  Also helped those within the scene get a better understanding of the ills that life tried throwing at us.  On this leak from the forthcoming rockthedub fifth anniversary compilation, FiF, AWK and Y-Love don’t hold back in trying to educate those who might sleep on the ills of the GOP.

Note: Y-Love & AWKWORD will be IN MADISON, WI on Thursday, April 7, on the streets, filming a video for this song!… If you want to get involved, email TheWisconsinSong[at]gmail.com

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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Triangle Fire by Steve Greenberg, Freelance Cartoonist (Los Angeles, CA), Buy this cartoon



John Deering, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Buy this cartoon

Don Wright

Don Wright, Comics.com (Tribune Media Services)



Jeopardy by Bob Englehart, see reader comments in the Hartford Courant, Buy this cartoon

Reagan started the destruction of labor unions, which I recognize, and Clinton continued it with NAFTA.  The middle class has lost ground, our income has atrophied and, according to Chomsky, the destruction of the unions is to blame.

I don’t know where the truth lies, but I’d like to see us come together to work out a system that benefits everyone instead of just the top 1 percent before we’re rioting in the streets like in Egypt, Bahrain, and Libya.

Englehart commenting on restoring the middle class



Mark Streeter, Savannah Morning News, Buy this cartoon

Matt Davies

Thin Sliced by Matt Davies, Comics.com, see reader comments in  Connecticut News



I Hate Unions by Daryl Cagle, MSNBC.com, Buy this cartoon



Lloyd Dangle, Troubletown, Buy this cartoon

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INTRODUCTION

Ed Stein

Ed Stein, Comics.com, see reader comments on Stein’s blog

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UPDATE: Even with yesterday’s “surprise” announcement that over 7,500 additional votes had been found for David Prosser, this fight is far from over.

A few weeks ago, no one in their right mind would have predicted what happened yesterday in the State of Wisconsin.  A political novice defeated an incumbent justice of the state’s Supreme Court.  This isn’t something that happens very frequently in special elections in any state.  But Wisconsin Democrats and allied groups demonstrated resolve and determination in fighting the GOP Machine.  For this, all of us who are committed to the principles of the Democratic Party owe the good people of Wisconsin a huge debt of gratitude.  This is how real democracy is supposed to work.

Yesterday, an article in Mother Jones magazine asked if this was even possible

Wisconsin’s Supreme Test

The uprising in Wisconsin this winter vividly illustrated that labor unions and progressive groups could still mount a massive fight when pressed. But can the outrage and determination that fueled the Madison protests be channeled into a victory at the ballot box?  That’s the question, as Wisconsinites today vote to fill a crucial swing seat on the state’s seven-person Supreme Court.

The race pits sitting Justice David Prosser, a conservative, against longtime Assistant Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg, a political novice. The outcome will determine whether the Badger State’s high court tilts to the left or to the right.  A Kloppenburg upset would send a strong signal that unions and left-leaning groups in this swing state are indeed a force to be reckoned with heading into the 2012 presidential election — that is, that Wisconsin’s progressive tradition is alive and well.  A Kloppenburg loss would take the wind out of the left’s sails, just as progressives in the state are trying to recall a slew of Republican lawmakers for their anti-union votes.

Today’s Update: In a major upset, mobilized unions and progressive groups helped a liberal underdog eke out a narrow victory, but a recount looms.

 

Editorial cartoonist Ed Stein details above what was really at stake.  Hard-won gains made by labor unions over the past century would most certainly have been diluted and the Democratic Party would have been on the political defensive until the 2012 Elections.  Instead, a Kloppenburg win results in new-found momentum to recall Republican state senators and restore a sense of balance between employers and employees.  

Absent yesterday’s success, we would be looking at more of the disturbing trends that Stein describes below

Difficult Labor

The Republicans in Wisconsin finally found a way to impose their will without Democrats in attendance.  Of course, everyone knows that the suppression of collective bargaining rights has nothing to do with the economy.  This is about destroying unions, the largest source of funding for Democrats in the country. The lousy economy has given Republicans in Wisconsin the excuse they needed to achieve their long-sought goal of undermining the power of public unions, and other states with Republican governors and legislatures are sure to follow.

Funny, the same folks who cried foul when health care reform was passed on a strictly partisan vote are silent when Republicans eviscerate collective bargaining without a single Democrat voting with them.  I was tempted to make the elephant in the cartoon a caricature of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, but given that Republicans in other states can’t wait to do the same, I decided to make the cartoon more general.  What I wanted to show here was what unions have accomplished over the years, not to mention the contempt the GOP appears to have for the working man.  Without collective bargaining, we’d still have six day work weeks, no workplace safety rules, no child labor laws, no overtime, etc.  I worry that we’re heading back to the nineteenth century, when robber barons ruled and workers served at the whim of their lords and masters.  Where’s Charles Dickens when we need him?

Why did David Prosser lose an election in which only a few weeks ago he was a prohibitive favorite?  NBC’s First Read provides some clues

If congressional Republicans should have learned any lesson from the budget showdown in Wisconsin, it was this: quit while you’re ahead. Despite being offered concession after concession on the budget — as long as he didn’t touch collective-bargaining rights for public employees — Gov. Scott Walker (R) went big for everything, including the collective bargaining rights.  And he’s since paid a steep political price, even though the legislation ultimately passed.  Walker’s poll numbers have plummeted.  The legislation is now locked up in the courts. The Democratic opposition remains fired up. And the state appears headed for a slew of recall elections this spring and summer.  The political lesson from Wisconsin: If you’re offered 70%-80% of what you want and will look like a hero in accepting the deal, take it.  But if you go for everything, be prepared for the backlash.  

I have included over 50 editorial cartoons on issues that have come to the fore due to strong resistance offered by Democrats to union-busting proposals and laws pursued by the Republican Party in Wisconsin and several other states.  I will add more cartoons both in the body of the diary as well as posting some in the comments section.

Comments are welcome.  Thanks.

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1. The Democrats of Wisconsin: Fighting to Preserve the Middle Class

Rob Rogers

Rob Rogers, Comics.com, see reader comments in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

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In this terrific cartoon, Rogers describes what many Republican governors are up to around the country.  At every given opportunity, they are trying to undermine the middle classes and engage in what I think is anti-intellectual behavior

Pro-Union

Many new GOP governors, Scott Walker included, are trying to kill unions. Maine’s republican governor Paul LePage removed a mural from their state’s labor department wall.  He claimed the mural was biased toward organized labor and out of line with his pro-business agenda.  Imagine that, a labor mural that celebrates labor … how evil!



Civil War by Joe Heller, Green Bay Press-Gazette, Buy this cartoon



Martin Kozlowski, inxart.com, Buy this cartoon



Tony Auth, Yahoo Comics/Philadelphia Inquirer

(click link to enlarge cartoon)

Ed Stein

Ed Stein, Comics.com (formerly of the Rocky Mountain News)



Statesman at Work by Bill Sanders, sanderscartoon.blogspot.com

(click link to enlarge cartoon)

Drew Sheneman

Drew Sheneman, Comics.com (Newark Star-Ledger)

Jeff Stahler

Jeff Stahler, Comics.com (Columbus Dispatch)



A Message from Arlo Guthrie by Randall Enos, Cagle Cartoons, Buy this cartoon



Union Busting by Bob Englehart, see reader comments in the Hartford Courant, Buy this cartoon

Because unions helped to create the middle class, safety standards in the workplace, the 40 hour week, paid vacations, livable wages, benefits, etc. etc. etc.  Unions also offer a balance of power to the fat cats who are hauling in the TARP-funded bonuses.  How about a union for tellers, secretaries, messengers and clerks on Wall Street?  Just a thought.

Only a fool or a tea party conservative (do I repeat myself?) would want to get rid of unions.  Unions maintain the middle class.  I’d like to see unions expand into all aspects of America’s working world, especially now when corporate greed is out of control.  I’d like to see unions balance the political scene with more donations to politicians who truly are on the side of the working man.

Englehart explaining why unions are necessary to the survival of the middle class



Joel Pett, McLatchy Cartoons/Lexington Herald-Leader

(click link to enlarge cartoon)

Walt Handelsman

Walt Handelsman, Comics.com (Newsday)

Matt Davies

Matt Davies, Comics.com (Connecticut News)

Paul Szep

Paul Szep, Comics.com



Mike Thompson, Comics.com (Detroit Free Press)

Dan Wasserman

Dan Wasserman, Comics.com (Boston Globe)

Jack Ohman

Jack Ohman, Comics.com (Portland Oregonian)

Signe Wilkinson

Signe Wilkinson, Comics.com (Philadelphia Daily News)

Bill Day

Bill Day, Comics.com (Memphis Commercial-Appeal)

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2. The GOP: Protecting the Criminal Class

Chan Lowe

Chan Lowe, Comics.com, see reader comments in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel

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Isn’t it ironic, Lowe asks, that union-busting efforts are in full swing in Wisconsin, the birthplace of the modern Progressive Movement?

Wisconsin’s Labor Pains

Maybe what Gov. Walker is trying to do will make him a hero in the Republican Party.  Maybe, in 2012 or 2016, he’ll run for president.  Maybe his crusade will successfully spread to the other rust-belt states and beyond.  Maybe the soul of the Democratic Party — the impassioned nuts-and-bolts base — will be eviscerated for all time, as his colleagues hope.

It’s a cruel irony that ground zero for what is potentially the greatest rollback in labor rights in modern times is Wisconsin, the home of Sen. Robert La Follette, Jr., where the progressive movement all began.

Even if he doesn’t go on to greater glory, Governor Walker has most certainly reserved for himself a pedestal in the Cheesehead Hall of Fame.



New Business Climate In Wisconsin by RJ Matson, St. Louis Post Dispatch, Buy this cartoon



Wisconsin Budget by Joe Heller, Green Bay Press-Gazette, Buy this cartoon



Jimmy Margulies, New Jersey Record, Buy this cartoon



Mike Peters, Dayton Daily News

(click link to enlarge cartoon

of 3/1/11 in Peters’ archives)



Mike Thompson, Comics.com (Detroit Free Press)



Matt Wuerker, Politico

(click link to enlarge cartoon

in Wuerker’s March 2011 archives)



Money Talks by Adam Zyglis, Buffalo News, Buy this cartoon



Joel Pett, McLatchy Cartoons/Lexington Herald-Leader

(click link to enlarge cartoon)

Jeff Stahler

Jeff Stahler, Comics.com (Columbus Dispatch)

Rob Rogers

Squashed by Rob Rogers, Comics.com, see reader comments in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

When will the Republicans stop trying to make scapegoats out of the poor and middle class?  They want to attack everything from unions to education to health care to public television.  This disastrous economy was created by deregulation and corrupt Wall St. bankers and corporations. Hey, GOP … aim your budget axe at the real criminals.

Rogers accuses the GOP of trying to protect criminal behavior on Wall Street



Class Warfare by Randall Enos, Cagle Cartoons, Buy this cartoon



Mike Peters, Dayton Daily News

(click link to enlarge cartoon of

3/4/2011 in Peters’ archives)



New York Snake by Joe Heller, Green Bay Press-Gazette, Buy this cartoon

Steve Sack

Steve Sack, Comics.com (Minneapolis Star-Tribune)

Don Wright

Don Wright, Comics.com (Tribune Media Services)



Joel Pett, McLatchy Cartoons/Lexington Herald-Leader

(click link to enlarge cartoon)



Begging for Crumbs by Monte Wolverton, Cagle Cartoons, Buy this cartoon



Class Warfare Collective Bargaining by Andy Singer, Politicalcartoons.com, Buy this cartoon



A Glass of Koch by Randall Enos, Cagle Cartoons, Buy this cartoon

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4. Leona Helmsley Was Right: Only the “Little People” Pay Taxes



Clay Jones, see reader comments in the Freelance-Star (Fredericksburg, VA), Buy this cartoon

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Jones doesn’t find fault with General Electric Corporation for evading taxes.  Neither does he praise it.  The blame lies solely with a compliant Congress that is all-too-eager to exchange obscene corporate tax breaks in exchange for campaign contributions.  In essence what he is saying is that responsibility lies not as much with the thief but his enabler  

Fire The Peacock

MSNBC, owned by General Electric, has failed to report on GE NOT paying any federal taxes.  GE actually got a refund. They had billions in profits and they cut their work force.  Remember that argument that lower corporate taxes created more jobs?  Yeah, right.

GE is squirming in explaining their taxes. They say they’ve paid local and state taxes.  OK.  They won’t come clean on the Federal tax thing.  I guess they could whine about the huge expense of paying off congressmen.

I don’t think we can blame GE for this.  If Congress gives them the option, why shouldn’t they take it? Blame Congress.

(Leona Helmsley’s mug shot (right) after being indicted and convicted of federal tax evasion charges)

Nick Anderson

Tax Burden by Nick Anderson, Comics.com, see reader comments in the Houston Chronicle

Matt Davies

Plugging Away by Matt Davies, Comics.com, see reader comments in Connecticut News



Steve Breen, San Diego Union-Tribune, Buy this cartoon



Pat Oliphant, Yahoo Comics/Universal Press Syndicate

(click link to enlarge cartoon)



Biz Tax by Pat Bagley, Salt Lake Tribune, Buy this cartoon



GE Avoids Taxes by Nate Beeler, Washington Examiner, Buy this cartoon



Imagination at Work by John Darkow, Columbia Daily Tribune, Buy this cartoon



Martin Kozlowski, inxart.com, Buy this cartoon

Mike Luckovich

Mike Luckovich, Comics.com (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Drew Sheneman

Drew Sheneman, Comics.com (Newark Star-Ledger)



No Income Tax For GE by Randall Enos, Cagle Cartoons, Buy this cartoon

Signe Wilkinson

Signe Wilkinson, Comics.com (Philadelphia Daily News)



Mark Streeter, Savannah Morning News, Buy this cartoon

John Sherffius

John Sherffius, Comics.com (Boulder Daily Camera)



Taxpayer Gets Screwed by Adam Zyglis, Buffalo News, Buy this cartoon

Chris Britt

Caterpillar CEO Whines About Conditions in Illinois by Chris Britt, Comics.com, see reader comments in the State-Journal-Register



Corporate Taxes by Joe Heller, Green Bay Press-Gazette, Buy this cartoon



Jeff Danziger, Yahoo Comics/New York Times Press Syndicate

(click link to enlarge cartoon)



Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Buy this cartoon

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5. The GOP’s Stable of 2012 “Presidential” Candidates

Mike Luckovich

Mike Luckovich, Comics.com (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Robert Ariail

Robert Ariail, Comics.com (formerly of The State, SC)



Jeff Danziger, New York Times Syndicate

(click link to enlarge cartoon)



Newt Gingrich’s Family Values by Bill Schorr, Cagle Cartoons, Buy this cartoon



John Deering, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Buy this cartoon



Mike Peters, Dayton Daily News

(click link to enlarge cartoon of 3/11/11 in Peters’ archives)



Chris Britt, State Journal-Register (Springfield, IL), Buy this cartoon

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6. Sports Talk: On to Baseball

Drew Litton

Drew Litton, Comics.com

Jeff Stahler

Jeff Stahler, Comics.com (Columbus Dispatch)



Busted NCAA Bracket by John Cole, Scranton Times-Tribune, Buy this cartoon

Drew Litton

Drew Litton, Comics.com



Clay Jones, Freelance-Star (Fredericksburg, VA), Buy this cartoon



Lockout by Milt Priggee, www.miltpriggee.com, Buy this cartoon

Nick Anderson

Protecting Athletes by Nick Anderson, Comics.com, see reader comments in the Houston Chronicle

Steve Kelley

Steve Kelley, Comics.com (New Orleans Times-Picayune)



Gary Varvel, Indianapolis Star-News, Buy this cartoon

John Sherffius

John Sherffius, Comics.com (Boulder Daily Camera)



Jeff Danziger, Yahoo Comics/New York Times Syndicate

(click link to enlarge cartoon)



Pittsburgh Pirates by Randy Bish, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Buy this cartoon

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7. RIP Congresswoman Geraldine Ferraro and Elizabeth Taylor

John Sherffius

John Sherffius, Comics.com (Boulder Daily Camera)



Geraldine Ferraro Memorial by Jimmy Margulies, New Jersey Record, Buy this cartoon



Deb Milbrath, Freelance Cartoonist

(click link to enlarge cartoon)

Note: There are many more editorial cartoons about Actress Elizabeth Taylor in my last weekly diary — The Week in Editorial Cartoons – “I Have Here in My Hand a List of…”

Steve Benson

Steve Benson, Comics.com (Arizona Republic)

Steve Kelley

Steve Kelley, Comics.com (New Orleans Times-Picayune)

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8. Final Thoughts



3D Porn by Milt Priggee, www.miltpriggee.com, Buy this cartoon

:: ::

Have you been to Europe this year?  Well, what are you waiting for?  Hurry up!

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A Note About the Diary Poll

John Sherffius

John Sherffius, Comics.com (Boulder Daily Camera)

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In a recent article in the New Yorker magazine, Hendrik Hertzberg wrote about the changing fortunes of the middle classes and traced it directly to decline in union membership in the private sector

Union Blues

Paul Szep

Organized labor’s catastrophic decline has paralleled — and, to a disputed but indisputably substantial degree, precipitated — an equally dramatic rise in economic inequality.  In 1980, the best-off tenth of American families collected about a third of the nation’s income. Now they’re getting close to half. The top one per cent is getting a full fifth, double what it got in 1980.  The super-rich-the top one-tenth of the top one per cent, which is to say the top one-thousandth, have been the biggest winners of all.  What is always called their “compensation” (wage workers lucky enough to have a job simply get paid) has quadrupled.

Over the same period, the composition of the labor movement, as it still defiantly styles itself, has radically changed.  A few weeks ago, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that, for the first time, more union members are government workers, not private-sector employees.  The Times quoted an official of the United States Chamber of Commerce as pronouncing himself “a little bit shocked,” and he wasn’t the only one. Yet this development has nothing to do with some imagined spike in public-sector unionism.  It is entirely a function of the collapse of organized labor in the private sector. For the past four decades, the portion of the public workforce belonging to unions has held remarkably steady, at a little more than one in three.  In the private sector, just one worker in fifteen carries a union card.

(Above cartoon by Paul Szep, Comics.com)

Given the above trends, yesterday’s election of JoAnne Kloppenburg to Wisconsin’s Supreme Court was welcome news.  While in the long-term this small step in itself may not radically change the economic landscape, it certainly gives the Democratic Party an opportunity to stop the bleeding and, to a degree, reverse this trend of a shrinking middle class and one which has contributed greatly to wealth and income equality in this country for several decades.

What impact, if any, will Kloppenburg’s election have upon the fortunes of the middle classes? Remember to take the diary poll too.

[poll id=”

1459

“]

2 comments

  1. MIke Thompson

    Mike Thompson, Comics.com, see reader comments in the Detroit Free Press

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    Thompson writes on his blog about the true motives behind these union-busting efforts in Wisconsin

    Public employee union members in Wisconsin owe a big “thank you” to Scott Fitzgerald, the Republican majority leader in the Wisconsin Senate.  Speaking to Fox News earlier this week, Fitzgerald spilled the beans about his party’s true motive for attacking the collective bargaining rights of public employees. Fitzgerald told Fox News, “If we (Republicans) win this battle and, uh, the money is not there under the auspices of the unions,” meaning that if Republicans can bust unions and dry up union donations to political candidates, “certainly what you’re going to find is President Obama is going to have a much difficult, a much more difficult time getting elected and winning the state of Wisconsin.”

    For weeks now, Wisconsin Republicans have been claiming that their move against public sector unions was just about balancing the state budget.  Now one of their own leaders openly admits that it’s really all about busting unions in order to deprive them of money to support the candidates of their choice in elections, namely, President Obama in 2012.

    As with Republican-led efforts elsewhere, the assault on public employee unions has more to do with elections than balancing budgets. Unfortunately, a whole lot of middle class families will wind up paying a steep financial price for the blatant Republican attempt to squash their political competition.

    Tips and the like here.  Thanks.  

    :: ::

    If any of you missed it, there are dozens of editorial cartoons about the Wisconsin fight in these previous diaries of mine:

    1. The Week in Editorial Cartoons – Union Busting in Wisconsin.

    2. The Week in Editorial Cartoons – Unprincipled Zealots and March Madness.

    3. The Week in Editorial Cartoons – “I Have Here in My Hand a List of…”

    If time permits, I’ll do another weekly diary by this weekend.  There are more editorial cartoons in the comments section of this diary that I posted over at Daily Kos.

  2. …of their own ditty:

    G.E.  We nuke live things to death!

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