CSotD: Political Potpourri

There are currently a gazillion cartoons transposing new words on Emma Lazarus’s Statue of Liberty poem, but Mike Luckovich took a completely other tack and stands out, not just for doing that but for focusing the issue on the people being impacted.

The Statue of Liberty is used so often that it’s hard to draw a Statue of Liberty cartoon with any punch. Similarly, Ellis Island is cited, not just in cartoons but in general, as a faceless crowd getting off a huge ship.

By giving us eight people of various ethnicities, raising their hands to pledge loyalty to the country, Luckovich narrows it down and says “These people …”

They may be fictional, but they’re not faceless.

Moreover, the “immigrants take their oaths” photo op has, in past years, been a regular feature in American newspapers and on local TV.  The Statue is a symbol of our welcoming arms, but these little news features personalize the tradition, with quick mini-interviews of the new citizens.

Luckovich picks up a sort of 10-7 split, hitting both the incredible number of botched arrests and prolonged jailing of American citizens by ICE officers, plus the fact that the Trump administration is now targeting legal immigrants.

“I just want them to come here legally” has been the race-baiter equivalent of “Some of my best friends …” but now that has been taken away. Now we don’t pretend to care if they came legally.

All this while the President’s loyalists insist he is not racist and that it’s racist to say he’s racist.

Which would be funny if we didn’t have a large number of 2020 voters only hearing one side of the argument.


Juxtaposition of the Day

(Lisa Benson)


(Mike Smith)

It strikes me as odd that Lisa Benson, a noted conservative, only suggests that Biden needs to carry a full-time crew because of his verbal gaffes, while Mike Smith, who tends to be more of a moderate, appears to suggest that the mistakes have upset the whole cup-of-joe.

And let me pause to say I like both the old-fashioned fire fighting rig — which touches on Biden’s age — and the cup-of-Joe pun.

What I don’t like is what I have likened before to Jay Leno’s content-free cheap shots, which I guess are fair game for Trump supporters but which undermine any chance of intelligent political debate.

Sure, Biden has always been known for fumble-mouth. But, damn, look who he’s running against if he gets the nomination!

Well, at least he really does misspeak. I saw a commentator the other day who noted that Al Gore only lied three times while Trump is now up over 2,000.

Which would be a better observation if Gore’s “lies” — about the Internet, about Love Canal, about “Love Story” — hadn’t been some bullshit caused by sloppy reporting that was exploited by his opponents and perpetuated by cheap jokesters.

Biden’s not my first choice, but he deserves a fair hearing.


Yahtzee of the Day

(Dave Brown)

(Morten Morland)

To clarify, a “juxtaposition” is two cartoons on a similar theme. A “Yahtzee” is two cartoons with the same concept, based on the game where, when the five dice come up the same, it is a “Yahtzee.”

It’s hard to miss John Bolton’s ridiculous mustache, but I’d never thought to compare him to Yosemite Sam until this morning, and not only does the comparison mock his ‘stache but it mocks his unreasoning, pugnacious attitude.

This is as worthy a metaphor as Jon Stewart’s creation of the Mitch McConnell turtle.

And it gets better, because I didn’t know Bolton was off humiliating us in the UK, so I went to Google News and found this explanation of what Brown and Morten were talking about.

This graf nearly put me on the floor:

Bolton is best known for a moustache that looks like a merkin made from Boris Johnson’s back hair. He is less well known, but known nonetheless, for being quite possibly the only person on planet Earth still happy to claim that the Iraq War was a good idea. He will probably, in the fullness of time, do it again for the same reason regarding the Iran War, which, at time of writing, he hasn’t been able to start just yet. 

Well, we paid to see the high diving act, and there it is.

Oh wad some pow’r indeed.


Tiny baubles in the whine

Joel Pett also sent me to Google News, where I confirmed that, indeed, Millennials are not falling for the Great Diamond Fraud.

From a purely snarky point of view, buying those tiny common shiny pebbles at a grotesquely inflated price would hardly jibe with complaining about student loans, housing prices and other economic inequities.

Only, whiny or not, they’re right about those things, up until the point where they start whining about “Boomers” as if there were some great conspiracy going on.

And as if there were such a thing as “Boomers” in the first place. As if Faith Popcorn‘s last name were “Popcorn.”

As if anyone with half a brain would be foolish enough to drop three months salary on a diamond, if they realized that the price of diamonds is as much of a commercial Madison Avenue marketing fraud as the concept of “Boomers” and “Millennials” and such.

Well, whether or not they believe in demographic unity, it’s good to know they’ve apparently wised up to the De Beers company, whose fraud is not simply nonsensical but exploitive of native people at one end of the process and gullible pigeons at the other.

And they should be happy that the above headline means nothing to them but has given their grandparents a horrific earworm.


Housekeeping note: You may have noticed a lack of musical “moments of zen” here recently. YouTube has become persistent about attaching commercials to their videos, which is their right, though I tried paying them for ad-free access and it doesn’t extend to shared videos. Also, it’s ridiculous of them to attach a two-minute, non-skippable ad to a 30-second clip. Sic transit.

8 thoughts on “CSotD: Political Potpourri

  1. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen Yosemite Bolton. When he was first proposed someone ran him with the Trumpsmanian Devil.

  2. Reading the link on Al Gore, I see he referred to the Love Canal as being in “upstate New York.” That’s even farther off than referring to the Southern Tier as “upstate.” (Reference Saturday’s CSotD)

  3. re ” As if Faith Popcorn‘s last name were “Popcorn.” Huh? Not that I care, but the article you link to specifically *said* that she had her name *legally changed* to that, so why do you think it isn’t?

  4. “Real” as opposed to “invented.” Like the concept of Millennials and Boomers and such.

    Real and legal often being two different things. They’re currently working on plant-based ice cream, which, in an earlier age, would have to be called “creme” because of not containing actual cream.

    We’ll see how that battle between legal and real plays out, given that I suspect that many of the most ardent advocates of consumer protection and transparency are also the most ardent fans of vegan alternatives.

  5. Creme is a different thing entirely, and the weak argument that soy milk contains no milk, coconut based ice cream contains no cream, and veggie burgers contain no meat so those words can’t be used as descriptors at all falls apart when you realize we have been calling things “milk”, “cream”, “meat” and even “cheese” that aren’t animal products for a pretty long time, and two, that you are saying that an unambiguous use of the English language is incorrect because it uses a word somehow reserved (you suggest, but not really) for the meat and dairy industry. I guess you can’t deal with “coconut milk”, “cream of the crop”, or “the meat of the nut”. I’ll spare you all the colloquial references to cheese. If we are going to be picky, let’s require “milk” to be unambiguously labled “modified bovine lactate product” because otherwise how will we know it comes from cows, and specifically from bovine cows? If that seems disingenuous then I think you have understood my point exactly. There is an obvious difference between clearly understood convention and absolutely precise language and consumer protection is about the first, not the second.

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