CSotD: Kidstuff and Other Unforgotten Dreams

We start with the grownups and this Kevin Necessary cartoon, which reminds me of the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment where they put a little kid alone in a room with a marshmallow in front of him on the promise that, if it was still there when the adult returned, the kid would get two marshmallows.

In a follow-up several years later, the kids who were able to wait were also the kids with better SAT scores, better grades, better physical fitness and more all-over success.

Except, as noted in that linked article, a repetition of the experiment suggested that the results had more to do with economic status than individual willpower, and that kids primed for success were also primed for delayed gratification.

So we’ve repeated the experiment, with adults and a different promise: If you can wait two months, you can have your life back, but, if you can’t, you’ll have to wait some more plus your grandmother will die.

Researchers now have to find if there is a correlation between being unable to wait and not understanding science and causality.


But industry is also finding it hard to wait to resume normal patterns, and Rico Schacherl  offers a view from South Africa that seems pretty universal.


Expecting the virus to simply disappear is as scientifically naive as denouncing it as a libtard plot, but there’s a lot of political pressure to open up as soon as possible, and even to ignore medical advice and decline to impose mask rules and other safety measures.

David Fitzsimmons indicates how that’s working out down in Arizona, where they have preserved their freedom to infect and be infected.

Cartoonists got a gift in the form of President Trump’s theory that, if you didn’t test so much, you wouldn’t have so many cases, and we got a gift in Tulsa when he announced that he had actually ordered fewer tests in order to improve the numbers, because it gave us this

Juxtaposition of the Day

(Jeff Stahler)

(John Deering)

Spokesmodel Kayleigh MagaNinny finds herself in Sean Spicer’s position of making statements that are non-operative almost before she leaves the podium.

Jeff Stahler barely got his cartoon out before Trump stepped in and let John Deering more or less simply record what happened next.

It kind of makes you miss Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who was no more honest than anyone else in the administration but at least managed to get the story straight and come up with consistency in her spin, half-truths and outright lies.

Then again, Sanders was a professional, and let’s not forget that a very good cartoonist at a major paper lost his job for observing that, while Sanders didn’t fit the spokesmodel arm-candy mode from which Trump usually makes his female hires, she was extremely good at her job.

Small-town editors not having any monopoly on being chickenshit.


Anyway, it was good to have someone up there whose statements didn’t make you roll your eyes or giggle. And who would never, ever have played the role of a visual prop in that gawdawful Bible photo.

The PR people I’ve known didn’t even want to be quoted by name, much less seen in pictures.

And don’t you wish that was the only rule of professional decorum that’s been jettisoned by this White House, though better behavior would deprive me of this second

Juxtaposition of the Day

(Nate Beeler)


(Matt Wuerker)

I might have let Beeler take this one on his own, since he’s conservative and so his criticism of Trump is more newsworthy, but Wuerker adds so many examples and fillips to his accusation that I can’t resist using his work yet again.

According to this morning’s reports, the CHAZ or CHOP or whatever in Seattle is pretty much over, which means it lasted about as long as Woodstock, a pretty dream that couldn’t be replicated.

Much of what happened at Woodstock had already been done by Diggers in the Haight and was repeated in places where dreamers rolled up their sleeves.

We’ll have to see what comes out of Seattle’s experience, but, in the meantime, Beeler and Wuerker put a good spin on it, describing a world in which rules are suspended not for idealistic reasons but quite the opposite.

No doubt there will be complaints about cleaning up the mess left when the kids leave the CHAZ, but that’s small potatoes compared to the clean up ahead in January, 2021.



Meanwhile, between the youngsters pranking the dictator on-line by ruining both his rally and his electronic mailing list, and their slightly older brothers and sisters setting up a temporary colony of hope, Paul Fell provides a fresh variation on the man-defying-the-tanks photo that’s been used too much by too many cartoonists.

The original man-defying-the-tanks was courageous but presaged a slaughter by Dear Leader’s beloved Chinese leadership.

I think Fell has a good eye on what this one means, and if the young folks aren’t the only cause of the wheels coming off, they surely get to count coup on it.

I wish they’d pay more attention to the planning and strategizing that went into the Civil Rights and Antiwar Movements, but maybe they’re more effective for just leaping in and not fretting over details.

We can save the planning and strategizing for the November elections and let the wild rumpus serve to set the mood and stir the necessary discontent.


Hey Rocky! Watch me pull a donation out of my hat!


If you’ve figured out that pulling a quarter out of their ears no longer impresses the young people in your circle, here’s a chance to learn some tricks that will.

A consortium of excellent magicians have put together a 282-page book that will teach you a variety of top-rated illusions and are offering it as a PDF download for a suggested donation of $25 that will go to BLM, NAACP and the National Lawyers Guild.

Details are here, and if you haven’t got $25, they’ll take what you can give.


(Tune by Buffy, Lyrics by Leonard Cohen)

2 thoughts on “CSotD: Kidstuff and Other Unforgotten Dreams

  1. I think you are mistaken in thinking young people aren’t paying attention. I know you specifically are calling out the planning or strategizing of previous movements, but the idea that gen x, y, then millennials, and then gen z are just freewheeling ignores two things: first, Black Lives Matter are multigenerational and have more organization than they seem to on the surface, and second, I think young people have exactly looked at previous movements, and come to some conclusions of their own, that the civil rights movement was multifaceted and succeeded where it did because the peaceful protestors were somewhat “backed up” by the Black Panthers (themselves not the violent extremists they get painted as by conser… sorry racists) and that in many ways those movements hit a wall because nonviolence can only take you so far (a lesson repeated as recently as our country’s reception of Kaepernick).

    In many ways the big difference this time around is that, when police cars and buildings are painted, smashed and set on fire, instead of a majority of whites saying “tsk tsk”, a lot of us are saying “well, that seems like minimal karma for racist murders without consequence”. We have arrived a place where, without endorsing violence, we are aware that one side has nothing to loose by being violent if the other side commits absolutely to peace. What seems like disorganization is more strategic than anyone wants to let on, because of course the movement also needs to have a majority of nonviolent actors who are sympathetic when they get bullied by the bullies. This happens through very careful messaging that calls for peace but explicitly does not denounce violence, and it’s succeeding. For the first time in my life, the people propping up racism through inaction and calls to slow change justified on the false premise of moderation are, well, scared.

  2. You’re doing more to prove my point than yours. If young people have come to the conclusion that the Panthers are why voter registration and the Civil Rights Act came about, they have some serious timeline issues to correct before we even get to the work done by James Farmer, Thurgood Marshall and the others who were hard at work when Huey Newton was still in grade school.
    I say that as someone who was very supportive of the Panthers back in the day.

    You also are missing the praise I lavished on the young people who are standing up now. Yes, I wish it were more coordinated and more directed, and I hope other young people are using the clipboards and shoe leather that will matter on November 3.

    But this is the first moment since the days of the Mobe when I’ve felt the surge that is required to make things happen and I couldn’t be happier with young people.

    Well, assuming some of them are working to set up ways to harness the rage into meaningful action. Read the “March” graphic histories and see what John Lewis did in preparation for sitting at lunch counters and marching over bridges.


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