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Harper’s Weekly lays off Thomas Nast to cut costs

Jimmy Margulies, editorial cartoonist for The New Jersey Record, has written the following faux news article to parody the senseless firings of editorial cartoonists.

New York ( November 12 ) Harper’s Weekly has eliminated the position of Thomas Nast, famed editorial cartoonist, noted for his pursuit of Boss Tweed and Tammany Hall as well as the creation of the Democratic donkey, Republican elephant, Uncle Sam and Santa Claus. Harper’s executives cited a declining economic outlook in the decision. Nast will pen his final cartoon by month’s end.

Nast had recently turned down a generous financial offer from Boss Tweed to stop drawing “them damned pictures” Since Harper’s management’s decision to terminate Nast achieved this same result, they announced their intention to seek the financial offer themselves.

Harper’s pointed to this move as both a smart strategy to bolster its own profitability, as well as a model for the entire print media industry to follow.

UPDATE: E&P’s Shawn Moynihan talks with Jimmy about his motivation for the above protest.

Community Comments

#1 Wiley Miller
November/12/2008
@ 5:25 pm

If I’m not mistaken, Harper’s Weekly did actually fire Thomas Nast. But the point is still well taken here.

#2 Ted Dawson
November/12/2008
@ 5:47 pm

Nast quit not long after old man Harper died. There’s a distinct difference in the way a company is run by its founder, and after that founder dies.

It’s an interesting piece of satire. I think there are plenty of contemporary cartoonists whose importance has also been forgotten or ignored. I’m sure plenty of politicians are happy about the decline of editorial cartoonists.

#3 KRANKY (JOE RANK)
November/13/2008
@ 2:16 am

Editorial cartooning was forced underground after WWI. Robert Minor, Boardman Robinson, Art Young, and many lesser knowns were all bludgeoned and quartered into semi-obscurity.
Heck…most contemporary editorial cartoonists would not even recognize the names of these masters! Young is probably the most famous person ever to arrive from Monroe, Wisconsin. Go there now, and ask ANYONE to identify his name!

The FASCISTS kill truth, or at least they try to.
It is up to us lonely paladins to ignore obversity…to plug forward and show truth through absurdity!

#4 Jeff Darcy
November/13/2008
@ 4:33 pm

Never heard of him, but maybe this fella Nast should start one of those web-comics or do Animation…I hear that’s where it’s at these days. That’s my two cents.

Joe The Publisher and Editor

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