See All Topics

Home / Section: Comic strips

CSotD – Yahbut

My father used to get angry with my teenage self over “Yahbut,” which was how I too often responded to his corrections. “Yah, I hear what you’re saying, But here’s what I think.” At those moments, he hadn’t been intending to open a discussion, much less a debate.

Well, there’s a lot of that going around and I haven’t changed a whole lot.

 

For instance, the Nib has this cartoon by Kasia Babis, and I’m pretty sure she meant “You can’t win arguing with those guys,” but I have an alternative interpretation that probably isn’t in line with her intentions.

That is, I agree 100 percent in disapproving of the “hot chick” depictions of women in fantasy comics and films, both in terms of costuming (which they’d fall out of) and anatomy (apparently based on Barbie).

Yahbut, I do object to absurd ahistoric depictions.

I don’t know what Joan of Arc actually did in battle, but leaders in those days didn’t, for the most part, sit on distant hilltops watching the action, so she likely did ride into the fray.

However, we don’t know if she looked like Kathy Rigby or Martina Navratilova.

Both superb athletes, but a 95-pound person of either sex cannot readily battle a 225-pound person of either sex. As with swallows and coconuts, it’s a simple question of weight ratios.

There are simple ways around it: Dress the character sensibly and then give her either a substantial physique or a bow and a quiver full of arrows.

Ditto with minorities popping up in unexpected settings: It’s not impossible — after all, Pushkin’s great-grandfather was an African living in Russia in the early 18th century, which seems unlikely, but there he was, and Prince Whipple sounds like a fictional hero but was quite real.

However, Morgan Freeman’s appearance in “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves” smacks of the Magical Negro, and there really was no reason for him to be in the film in the first place.

I prefer Woody Strode, whose characters in films like “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance,” “The Professionals” and, certainly, “Sergeant Rutledge” reflected what a strong, proud black man might have actually been like in those eras.

Let me be clear: I’m not asking for a history lesson. Just a little logic and realism.

And, on a more weighty issue, we have a related

Juxtaposition of the Day

(Tom Toles)

 

(Steve Breen)

I suspect my time rooting around in Herblock’s Watergate cartoons yesterday is what prompted this epiphany, but something struck me as I was looking at social media.

Nancy Pelosi has been pushing back against the most optimistic/extreme (take your pick) proposals coming out of the youth wing of her party, and has said that winning the election, and winning it by enough of a margin that Dear Leader can’t question the outcome, is vital.

The pushback from younger voters is that centrists are ruining the Democratic Party, that centrism is rightwing, and that the old people need to stop being such cowards.

Like Toles, I see a very vulnerable Donald Trump in 2020.

And like Breen’s donkey, I find Biden comfortable, dull and uninspiring.

Let me be clear: Biden is not my first choice. Maybe not my second or third.

Yahbut, as I read all the objections to Pelosi’s remarks, I had a Watergate flashback to the time when Don Segretti and the White House Rat F*ckers put Ed Muskie out of the race, and George McGovern ended up with the nomination.

There were 15 candidates, but the obvious front runner was Muskie, with McGovern the idealist candidate.

By torpedoing Muskie, the Nixon White House was able to pave the way for a nominee who was not a centrist but rather embodied the hopes and dreams of a new generation.

McGovern promised an immediate end to the War and a guaranteed national income and it sounded wonderful to the young people, including the newly enfranchised 18-20 years olds.

Yahbut …

 

… McGovern got his ass kicked, and not just a little.

We remember Watergate for the DNC burglary, which they screwed up, and the Ellsberg burglary, which nobody knew about until after the election, but the destruction of Muskie as a viable candidate may have been a more important factor in the race.

Biden is not exciting, and some of the other candidates are.

Yahbut the goal is to win the White House, and Pelosi might be on to something.

We’ll see. I have a current favorite, and it’s neither Biden nor Bernie, but February’s NH Primary is a long way away and I want to see the debates. I’ll probably change my mind as I learn more. I’m funny that way.

Meanwhile, here’s what I wish we had: I wish Facebook and Twitter and the rest could find a way to analyse IP addresses and make it clear who was posting from Pennsylvania and who was posting from Petersburg.

Because if the Democrats end up with an inspiring, exciting, unelectable candidate and 38% of the popular vote and 17 electoral college votes, I’d like to know whether it was the work of Russian trolls or idealistic hipsters.

Not that it will matter. I’m just curious.

 

Meanwhile …

Bill Day notes that Trump is turning back the safeguards that were put in place after the Deepwater Horizon disaster of 2010.

It will save the oil industry $1.5 billion dollars, which will help them afford the taxes they don’t pay.

This crap has got to stop.

And we all have visions and dreams of what we could do as a country.

Yahbut first we’ve got to win the White House.

Even if we then have to legislate all those dreams and visions from the floor of Congress (which we must also win).

The point is, we don’t need a hero.

We need a victory.

 

 

 

Community Comments

#1 Sean Martin
May/5/2019
@ 8:14 am

You can already see the people with political egos the size of pornographic genitals making a fuss about Bernie being shut out again.

Poor Bernie.

Sorry, but tough. Whoever the Dems run, you go in the freaking booth, you hold your freaking nose, and you pull the freaking lever. It aint rocket science, not when the alternative is this utterly and frightening inept.

#2 Mike Peterson
May/5/2019
@ 11:06 am

I wish it were only Bernie supporters — and my feed has very few of them. What I see are floods of anti-Bernie, which feels like “Who asked you?” because the Bernie people I know from the last time around are looking to others this time.

No it’s the people supporting extreme reforms — good stuff in an ideal world but nothing you would expect to get a majority of voters for. They’re more like the Jill Stein crowd from last time around, looking for purity. What will be interesting will be to see what they do when the “perfect” candidates flame out and we’re left with someone electable. Will they hold their noses and vote or preserve their purity and let Trump win?

#3 Mary McNeil
May/5/2019
@ 3:47 pm

Tip of the Hat :First time I noticed Woody Strode was when he was the ruler of Ethiopia in “The Ten Commandments.”

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.