Comic Strip of the Day: Reports from the Handcart

Mike Luckovich on a topic nobody cares about anymore. As was noted here in a recent Candorville, media attention has largely moved on from separated families despite the problem not having been solved.

But about seven hundred kids are now orphaned by the incompetent cruelty of a policy that separated families and then lost track of them.

Whether the perpetrators are thugs or imbeciles is irrelevant: Such a drastic policy required more careful oversight.

There is still some coverage of the issue, for those with a responsible media diet and it was covered on All Things Considered last evening

Ari Shapiro interviewed a border patrol official who said separating families has worked, but who was evasive on the morality of the concept:

Operationally, it did what it needed to. I think from the humane piece, there was – it was very unpopular. I think even the president and the first lady were saying, hey, you know, nobody likes a separation of the family. Nobody is in agreement with that. But what do you do now with that population? We’re back to square one, right? We have to do something.

There may indeed be, as he said, a drop in border crossings, but Shapiro also interviewed a Honduran woman who hadn’t heard about the separations and had fled because gangs were threatening to kill her children.

Which made me think that, if I had to choose between having my children taken from me, but allowed to live, or having them murdered, I’d probably head north.


You can attribute that official’s casual attitude towards such heartless cruelty as a combination of on-the-ground cynicism and “just following orders.”

But Steve Sack leaves no such wiggle room for the fellow who issued those orders, and, at first blush, I thought he was exaggerating the administration’s bland acceptance of this atrocity. But I know Sack’s work well enough that I went to Google News.

Oh dear. I kind of wish I hadn’t looked.

Not, of course, that incarcerating parents and children separately is unprecedented, mind you.

After all, Otto and Edith Frank were kept at Auschwitz, while their daughters, Margot and Anne, were taken from them and sent to Bergen-Belsen.

Though they wouldn’t have been either place if they hadn’t been denied refugee status by the US government.

And, while that comparison is an exaggeration for effect, I don’t know how long we can avoid accepting the obvious, growing parallels.


I’ve compared the Deplorables to Germans who remained criminally oblivious to what their government was doing, but I think we’re moving on into brown-shirt Kristallnacht territory.

Eric Trump tweeted a clip of this mob action with the hashtag #Truth, and his father — having ramped up the crowd at his rally — proudly retweeted it.


Juxtaposition of the Day #1

(Ann Telnaes)

(Kevin Siers)

I don’t know a historic comparison for Rudy Guiliani who was once the maverick who cleaned up Times Square but now appears to have — to use a medical term — slipped a cog.

But the illogic issuing from him, and from Dear Leader, is the sort of thing you expect in the last scene of a movie, when the mad dictator is surrounded by his enemies and is stumbling around, raving incoherently, on the brink of overthrow.

I haven’t seen the version where all this goes on and, instead of the soldiers breaking in, led by King Richard or MacDuff or whoever, he opens the french doors and steps out onto the balcony to the cheers of the crowd.

But my grandchildren will one day, and I hope it’s not the last scene, but only a suspenseful prelude to the happy ending.


Juxtaposition of the Day #2

(Scott Stantis)

(Phil Hands)

Scott Stantis finds some dark humor in the GOP’s bargain with the devil, and plays upon the President’s glorious triumph in North Korea.

We might hope for a similar outcome here, but so far, McConnell has mastered the part about sucking up, offering praise and pretending to agree, but hasn’t quite grasped how you go ahead and do what you wanted to do all along.

Unless this is, indeed, what he and his acolytes have wanted to do all along. North Korea isn’t the only “Hermit Kingdom” that is difficult for outsiders to comprehend.

Phil Hands, similarly, assumes that the remaining Republicans — those who have not resigned or been defeated in primaries as RINOs — have the necessary awareness to see where Trump’s current explosion of threats is leading.

You’d think they’d at least notice which side of the aisle is chanting “Do it! Do it!”


And now for something almost but not completely different

In her latest Anne and God, Anne Morse Hambrock gets a valuable tip from the Deity, particularly fitting as an ending to today’s depressing rundown of the national health.

I have a particular distaste for “bucket lists,” because I’ve never had one.

There are a lot of things I haven’t done that might have been fun, but, if I’d really wanted to do them, I would have.

For instance, I regret that a writer’s modest income never allowed me to travel much, but, then again, my talent as a writer would have allowed me to write for travel magazines and then I’d have gotten paid to see the world.

Obviously, it wasn’t a genuine priority.

And I did take off a year to write a novel. Not a good novel, but any novel that you do write is better than the one you promised yourself you were going to.

As John Lennon said, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

A bucket list is just a list of those other plans.

As for the future, you can fret for the world and for other people, and try your best to make things better, but don’t worry about yourself: The world may indeed be going to Hell in a handcart, but maybe you’ll be lucky and get hit by a bus tomorrow.

Embrace life.

Stop making other plans.

Go buy some flowers.

2 thoughts on “Comic Strip of the Day: Reports from the Handcart

  1. I think Guiliani’s strategy, assuming he even has one, is to gradually admit what Trump has done, rather than have it all come out at once (the boiling frog strategy?).

    I’m a few days, I can imagine him saying, “Sure, the president committed treason, but it was light treason.”

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