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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Donald's Sing-a-long in Noo Yawk

I have a bone to pick with the media. In the lead up to Trump's "speech" at the United Nations today, they unquestioningly passed along the highly spun bit of bunk put out by Trump's handlers that "America First" was actually just standard interest-based foreign policy, something any country would and should sign onto. That's an abdication of their responsibility to dig a bit deeper and provide some of the context so that we can appreciate the real meaning of this jingoistic, xenophobic drivel. They can still remain plenty fair and balanced by doing this while holding it up as part of a long well-documented string of vile utterances emanating from that man's...puckered up orifice.

Because, let's face it: U.S. foreign policy - despite the presence of the "grown ups" in the cabinet - continues to plummet into something of a death spiral. Principals at State, DoD and the White House saying completely different things about critical foreign policy issues...and on the same day! Rex Tillerson hollowing out the State Department so that seasoned diplomats are fleeing in droves. And, of course, the Donald throwing out empty threats (G-d, I hope they're empty) that would throw parts of this world onto the edge of a nuclear holocaust.

But I'm sure that by reading from a teleprompter today Trump will explain all of this in a way so that it all sounds "presidential," just like "America First" sounds like an actual policy.


Sunday, September 10, 2017

Hey, B'Abbott! Climate Change is REAL!

So...here we are in Hurricane season and only a week or so after Harvey walloped Texas, Irma has begun to hammer Florida. And yet...Governor Tweedledumb of Texas remains one of the biggest Climate Change deniers, but wait, he has company, Governor Tweedledumber of Florida. And they have lots of buddies, too. Members of their respective state delegations in the U.S. Congress voted against the disaster response assistance, "on principle," because the bill was tied to raising the debt ceiling. Seriously? What principle would that be? Some variant of trickle-down, voodoo economics? Something like, "Record (Hurricane-spiked) tides drown all lives?"

Knuckleheads.

Beyond their culpability in rolling back all policies that would have mitigated climate change as well as their Orwellian efforts to stifle even the mention of climate change in all official state communications, they are likely to squander this opportunity to reset and replace such policies with ones that are climate-smart and sustainable. Call it whatever you want - throwing good money after bad - but they are likely to bring back those very same no holds barred, regulation-free policies that promote hyper-development and socioeconomic inequality. These are the same policies that contributed so much to climate change in the first place and to the very conditions that enable it to have such a deadly impact on our communities. I tell you what I prefer to call it: insane, in line with Albert Einstein's definition of insanity: "Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

With more hurricanes already on the way, these knuckleheads, and the nincompoops who voted them into office, will have every opportunity to to test the veracity of that definition. Good luck with that.


Monday, August 28, 2017

Say it Ain't So, Joe - A First-Ever Imperial Wardrobe Two Fer

I want to first extend my sympathies to all of the folks in Southeast Texas who are currently enduring the most epic shock in recent or recorded history. I'll come back to that topic in another blog, because this isn't/wasn't just a "natural disaster," but no is not the time for that discussion.

It is the time, however, to try to unpack the President's sucker punch to the Constitution and the institution of the administration of justice. Of course, I could be talking about any number of raging dumpster fires set by the Donald and his minions, but in this case I'm talking about his pardon for ("Sheriff") Joe Arpaio. This is the self-styled Heinrich Himmler of the Southwest who terrorized anyone who might have resembled being Hispanic by ordering his deputies to aggressively round up possible illegal immigrant and then place them in detention centers, which Arpaio himself proudly referred to as "concentration camps." These detention centers were in the middle of the desert, and detainees were forced to live under the 145 degree sun with only a tent to protect them from the elements. And then there's their loss of dignity from having their liberty stolen by some jack-booted fascist thugs, who gleefully beat them while they were cut off from their loved ones and their livelihoods.

He would have certainly made "die Fuhrer" proud with his flagrantly ethnocentric-based abuses of human rights.

Of course, with pedigree like that, it's hardly a surprise that our Putin-worshiping, Nazi-lover of a President would extend a presidential pardon to Arpaio, whose terrorist tactics provide a concrete example of putting Trump's fear-based, hate-driven white nationalism into practice. Barring a miraculous growth spurt in spinal tissue among the Republican Party, this is what we have to look forward to for the next 3+ years. G-d help us all.



Monday, August 21, 2017

Winin' 'n' Dinin'

Just back from a much-needed break in the lovely Sacramento Mountains of New Mexico. Of course I couldn't keep away from the news, especially not with the events in Charlottesville last week. No, I wasn't surprised at what happened. What was surprising was that the Nazi scum's muscle didn't open fire on the counter-protesters.

And I was especially not surprised by Trump's embrace and defense of the Nazi scum and their actions. Okay, I get it. His was the first full-throated defense of the indefensible by a U.S. president. So, what? All of the other presidents, many of whom were also racists and anti-Semites as much in word as in deed, get a pass because they used a dog whistle and not a bullhorn? It's got to be both and. All of the past U.S. presidents who failed to protect and promote justice for all citizens should be called to account by historians (acts of omission), AND all of them who perpetrated such acts of injustice should also be called to account (acts of commission).

Donald Trump, of course, is simply off the scale, so one cannot even consider him in the same conversation. He is simply the...worst...president...EVER. Period, Full Stop. The End.


Monday, August 7, 2017

The Lyin' King

It was almost within 24 hours of my last post that the Mooch got shown the door by Gen. John Kelly, the new White House Chief of Staff. I just can't keep up with this clown show, but then nobody really can. So, as much as I know I should pick something that is right in the moment topical, I couldn't resist this idea, which seems to be a bit more timeless, if there's ever any such thing with the current administration.

I guess I'm unconsciously reading into the future. At some point, this savagely idiotic operation that is the Trump administration will begin eating its own young. Hence, the idea of portraying Junior as Simba, because I'm guessing he'll be the first of the brood to get thrown under the bus, or chucked over the cliff, as it were. And who better than to do the chucking then the administration's very own Jabba the Hutt, Steve Baboonon? Meanwhile, the Donald, a.k.a., MoFo-suh, will be sitting sphinx-like, if only for a NY minute, until he launches into another whiny embrace of victimhood, blaming everyone but himself for the deep pile of fecal matter he's managed to bury himself under.

Good luck, General Kelly; you're sure as heck gonna need it with this "pride" of lyin' so-and-so's.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Scarmoochie

When I finally saw Scarface in its entirety, I have to admit I felt a little let down. It was sooooooo over the top, but what else would you expect from Oliver Stone, who wrote the screenplay.

Sooooooo...it should be no surprise in another life-imitating-art moment that Anthony "Tony Montana" Scarmoochie would exhibit the same over the top flamboyance and pissantry, coming into his new position as Comms Director with a blaze of vulgar profanity-laced tirades. People refer to him as Trump's mini-me but I think that's giving Dr. Evil's alter-ego a bad name. By the third installment of the Austin Powers series I actually found the little fellow to be kind of sympathetic.

Not so with the Mooch, and don't blame it on his Noo Yawuh roots. Not all New Yorkers are such unrepentant, insufferable jerks. No, this is another deeply flawed individual who's looking to cash in working for an epically flawed president. At some point he'll be hung out to dry, too, in the dysfunctional merry-go-round that is the Trump "maladministration." And when that happens, I'll be the first to wave and say, "Say good-bye to my little friend!"


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Three Alarm Fire

While his "agenda" was going up in smoke last week with the health care bill debacle, the Donald decided it was the right time to play fireman, something about promoting products that were "made in America." Let's leave aside the facile notion that in the current globalized, networked economy there's any significant volume of production that is built solely in one country. Let's focus instead on the rank hypocrisy of Trump and his brood trotting out this bit of red meat for their supporters when they clearly practice and benefit from overseas production/assembly/etc. of their many lines of schlock.

Oh, and lest we forget, the biggest accomplishment in trade policy this marketing "genius" pulled off was to sell off the integrity of our nation's political and governance institutions to Russia in return for receiving systematic hacking and media propaganda services during the 2016 election. If the Donald wants to blow off doing his job and play fireman instead so that he can ride on a firetruck put out fires he might start with dousing his own trousers, which he manages to light on fire every time he opens his...whichever orifice...to unleash another pants-on-fire barrage of bunk.

Friday, July 21, 2017

The Whopper

What I really appreciate about the Trump regime is its bottomless capacity to debase itself and the nation and people it purportedly serves, which would be...us. There are no lies too large or outrageous to heap on top of the already unwieldy pile of prevarication and deception. These folks really have no shame. I really do believe that they always knew that at some point the gig would be up. They're just waiting, daring us all really, to try to stop them.

Meanwhile, they'll abuse the office of the presidency and the executive branch for as long as the spineless, amoral Republican party sees it to be in their interest to let them do so. I guess that means that there will be no shortage of opportunities for me and my fellow cartoonists. That's the good news. The bad news is the heavy social cost this deadly charade of "governing" is exacting on our society and our institutions.

I hear so many people ask (rhetorically, I can only assume), "How can these people live with themselves?" I imagine the answer is very simple: soundly. Easy to do when they lack any sort of moral compass or if they do, it's been warped to point due south, straight down the crapper. Kind of like crap sandwich...like the Whopper! Hmmmmm...fast food...


Monday, July 10, 2017

Under Trumpcare, You're Covered...In 6 Feet of Dirt

With July 4th break over and nothing else better to do during the DC summer's hot, muggy days those wacky Republicans and the Donald are at it again, trying to destroy the nation's health care system. Like they say, if at first you don't succeed, lie, lie and lie again. Raul Labrador, a Republican member of Congress from Idaho, even told his constituents that, "Nobody dies because they don't have access to health care." Yeah, that went over real well. Got to hand it to him for trying to sell the baloney, but there's only so much baloney you can force anyone to eat.

Of course, remember folks, trashing the ACA isn't really about keeping a campaign promise. It's about setting the table for another massive tax cut for the uber-wealthy. Besides, when you're predisposed to denying reality in general and scientific facts in particular (Exhibit A: see climate change; Exhibit B: evolution), you eventually convince yourself of the lies you regularly tell others. At some point you really are dwelling in a parallel universe with alternative facts. I just hope they have good cable and flush toilets there.


Thursday, July 6, 2017

Alaska Cream Pie - Trump's Special Recipe

Well, it's official. North Korea can now reach us with one of it's newly tested intercontinental ballistic missiles. All it needs now is to figure out how to shrink one if its deadly nukes so that it can fit into said ICBM. So now we are back to feeling "safe," because surely the two tragically coiffed madmen who North Korea and our own country will practice...MAD, mutually assured destruction. Not exactly the stuff of a mind at ease, never a good night's rest.

So, it's back to ducking under our desks and hoping and praying that neither one of them does or says something stupid enough to piss off the other one enough so that he does the unthinkable. Oh, what I wouldn't do for a little adult supervision for the "leaders" of this world. Barring that, maybe we could lock them all up in some mile-deep vault for a really long timeout. I can always dream...

Monday, June 19, 2017

America's Favorite Passtime

This shooting was a tragedy. Not surprisingly, several Republican "leaders," both in and out of office, unscrupulously exploited it for the party's political advantage, blaming Democrats for the trend of uncivil political discourse. As usual, these alternative facts just don't hold up under even the most superficial scrutiny. And what's even more sickening (and still unsurprising) was hearing the NRA-bought and paid for Republican officials trotting out their usual dead-end solutions of further loosening restrictions on guns, as if somehow if we were all just armed to the teeth, none of this would ever happen.

Somewhere the gun manufacturers are rubbing their hands in glee and looking forward to yet another opportunity to further weaponize our society while they rake in even more revenue from having created the conditions for this senseless carnage. Meanwhile, our "President," spent about 5 minutes doing the right thing and then went right back to bullying and blustering about the special counsel's probe into his campaign's and administration's possible involvement with the Russians. Given a real opportunity to unite us as a country and to deescalate the violent political rhetoric and its predictable results, this is what we get instead: narcissistic, self-serving bellowing. I guess this is what "leadership" looks like in the Republicans' vision of America.


Friday, June 16, 2017

Stab in the Dark

I'm not even going to try to describe the rank hypocrisy of the Republicans ramming through a disastrous health care bill without holding a single public or committee hearing, never mind allowing the American people a chance to weigh in on an issue that is critical to all of us. Hypocrisy and the associated total lack of integrity is part of the Republican Party's DNA. They'll literally do anything if it helps advance their hate-filled white supremacist agenda, which includes among other things stripping the most vulnerable of any credible access to affordable, quality health care.

And, of course, there's the Donald, who's apparently only to happy to throw his voters under the bus all in the service of his fragile, bloated ego, so that he can score a "win." So sad, so sad...And will his voters even realize that they've just been had? That for all of their fierce commitment to something or someone who was going to drain the swamp, finally represent their interests and give their concerns a voice that instead they've just had a narcissistic billionaire steal and eat their lunch? Hmmm...I'm guessing the answer would be...no? Oh well, I guess it's just another validation of the political scientists' dictum: we deserve to get the government we elect.




Monday, May 15, 2017

What if the Nazis had won the election? Wait...oh, crap.

I actually had been thinking about using this idea for a cartoon for a few months, and thankfully a recent report about die Trumper's behavior provided me with a perfect opportunity. Evidently, while hosting several journalists from TIME magazine, he showed all the graciousness of a 3-year old (apologies to all 3-year old's) and had the White House staff serve him more, better quality food than all of his guests. To top it off, for dessert, he had them serve him two scoops of ice cream instead of just the one that was served to the guests. Wow...

Combine that with the stead stream of reports of his puerile behavior, moping in the White House and raging at his many television screens when (surprise!) he doesn't get the desired reaction from his knucklehead moves, the latest, of course, being the firing of now former FBI Director James Comey. Finally, there's his never-ending list of man crushes on skull crushing dictators, and voila! A cartoon is born.

Is it over-the-top to imply Trump and his gang are a bunch of fascists, even Nazis? I might have thought that a few days ago, but then I read a great piece in the NY Times in which FDR's then vice-president outlined how a fascist could rise and seize power in the U.S. Of course, fascism is just another permutation of the kind of white supremacy that has governed this country since the first colonist set foot on these shores, so, really, no big shocker there. White folks have been oppressing, subjugating, enslaving, exterminating and otherwise making life a living hell for people of color in this country since then and we've put lipstick on that pig up many times over with whatever pious, self-righteous nonsense oozed out of our backsides. Plus ca change, quoi.

Okay, that's enough rantin' and ravin', here's the 'toon.


Monday, May 8, 2017

No, You're the Meathead

If you're at all like me, you've probably given up trying to keep up with all of the conflicts of interest and general trashing of ethical and political norms since Trump became president. Thank goodness there are good watchdog organizations out there that make it their cause to track and raise public awareness about this kind of stuff. I admit that I'm just plain worn out, but not too worn out to ink another 'toon.

If the Clintons sullied the White House and soiled the sheets of the Lincoln Bedroom, Trump and his spawn have really taken it to another level. They've managed to transform one of our most respected political institutions into a corporate marketing and branding cat house where it's personal AND it's business. Oh! Fugghedaboutit!

Thank goodness the Congressional GOP isn't worried about this sort of thing. One oversight committee chair recused himself only after trying to play Deep Throat and divulging classified information (Nunes), and another announced his retirement after this term and then squashes any calls for subpoenas (Chaffetz).

So...who's the real meathead here?


Tuesday, May 2, 2017

One Hundred Days of Ineptitude


The Donald and his minions can spin it any way they want, but it's clear to most that his first (much-touted by them as the best ever) 100 days were a colossal, unmitigated flop. Is there really any surprise? Remember, this is a man who was born with a silver spoon born in his pie hole who has gone through life feeling entitled to wreck people's lives and livelihoods. This is the guy who thought he could come in and work his same private sector, corporate mogul mojo and with absolutely no experience in or interest in learning about how the public sector works, make America great again.

And now, thanks to a goodly portion of white Amerikkka, he's now president where he gets to spend another four years...wait for it...feeling entitled to wreck people's lives and livelihoods...PLUS get us into all kinds of wars, military, trade or otherwise. And, as an added bonus, we get to waste four years we can't afford to lose in our effort to slow done the process of climate change. SWEET!

Well, with apologies to Gabriel Garcia Marquez, here's my latest:


Monday, April 17, 2017

MOAB

You know what they say, big bomb...small hands. Look - this was militarily insignificant. ISIS's strength in Afghanistan is waning; the real power to take on is the Taliban, but we can't so we won't. This was just an overpriced (financial and human costs) opportunity to show the world how much destruction he can wreak with his teeny, tiny, itchy trigger finger.

And, yeah. It's another shiny object distraction for the fawning media to pursue instead of the big stories about this illegitimate administration's efforts to take us back to pre-civil rights America where white entitlement reigned supreme in a savage, Darwinist capitalistic experiment gone awry. I lost count of how many reporters/bloviators/etc. made some sort of comment of how this decision made Trump truly presidential. Whaaa? Since when was dropping bombs needlessly for a lost military cause presidential? Bunch of sycophantic boneheads.


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Poor Spicey. Mocked mercilessly by Melissa McCarthy and then being asked to repeat, recycle and re-spin the same lies over and over  and over again. I don't actually pity him. He did, after all, sign up for this gig, which speaks volumes to his own moral compass or lack thereof. Oh well. So much for compassion. Have a nice week, Sean. Try explaining why your Boss, die Trumpler, decided not to lift a finger on our man Flynn even though he know a month ago that his national security advisor was illegally playing footsie with the Ruskies, assuring them that soon everything was going to be alright.

Needless to say, Sean, like the underarm deodorant, you stink, man.


Monday, January 23, 2017

So much for the crack efficiency of the private sector. As the NY Times pointed out this morning, The Donald has been so busy pitching paranoid fits that he's neglected to put his cabinet and White House staff together. I'm guessing that there's more to it than that. Since, even self-respecting right wingers are thinking twice on whether or not they would want to serve in the s#!t show that will be his administration, he's really having to scrape the bottom of the barrel to find anyone who's willing to jettison their sense of integrity and pitch in and join the Greatest Freak Show on Earth. The dregs he has been left with for major appointments are, with few exceptions, woefully inexperienced, unqualified and in some cases just a few bricks sort of a load (See Exhibit A: Betsy DeVos, explaining why there needs to be guns in schools).

Calling them B-team doesn't even do justice to these clowns and that's probably giving clowns a bad name; hence, this cartoon. Break out the cracker jacks and watch these crackers hijack our country. Yikes.


I had such the dilemma this past weekend: go down to DC and join the women's march or ink a couple of cartoons? I decided to hole up in my study and do the 'toons while my wife joined a half million plus folks to send a message to the "super callous fragile sexist racist Nazi POTUS " - I can't take credit for that - a friend saw it on one of the signs someone in the march was carrying. Anyway, this 'toon was just too obvious and a probably even a bit gratuitous but hey, I'm allowed one every now and a then. Enjoy.


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

All Tweet, No Action

Never let it be said that The Donald can't go any lower, as we saw with his attempt to cyber-bully, i.e., troll, John Lewis, a man who came within an inch of his life fighting for what he believed in. And what has The Donald done to make the world a better, more just place? Wait for it...

...still waiting?

...are you ready for it?

...here it is...

0.

You might think that it was being elected president of the United States gives The Donald free license to let any and all kinds of racist filth to spew from his pie hole, but it's really just another example of white entitlement, although having the power of the presidency tends to amplify it just a bit. And then his cowardly, soulless minion, Mike Pence, has the audacity to whitesplain The Donald's actions by saying that he has a right to defend himself. True, sir, but not with language that is beneath the office he will soon hold and that is certainly beneath anyone who hopes to serve in the public sector in any capacity. Pence ought to go back to Indiana, birthplace of the KKK, where he can live out his twisted. hate-filled mutation of Christianity, safely out of the corridors of power where he's likely to make even more people miserable.


Pussy Riot

After reading the NY Times piece on white women who voted For Trump, I had to ink this 'toon. I mean, seriously? You don't have to be a misogynistic Archie Bunker type to realize that these women have some serious issues. So let me get this straight, ladies. You're standin' by your man just so he can actualize the racist, xenophobic crap that has been rotting for however long inside your pea-sized brain? I encourage y'all to read this article, because you cannot make this up.

I'm going to stop before I say something I'm going to regret, and I guess it's only reasonable that women have every right to be idiots as much as men, but really? This is how much you respect yourself? You support this man who made no bones about his sexual predatory proclivities? Well, good luck with all that...like the political scientists say: you deserve the sexual predator you elect.

So I guess it's only fair that Trump get a taste of his own medicine, and who better to administer it than his man crush boo-sky, Vladimir Putin. Barring that, I wouldn't be surprised if The Donald asks Melania to dress up as Putin and then commit unspeakable acts. I mean that's what she was paid to do in the past, right? Isn't that how she put herself through university to get the degree she never actually earned? Oh, Lord, there I went ahead and did it...but I can't say that I really regret it.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

No...You're the Puppet

Happy New Year...I guess.

So, where to start? It turns out that our sexual predator-elect has got a real man crush on Vlady Putin. It would be endearing if it weren't so dangerous, since one of these two bromance partners wants to turn the world inside out and rule it with an iron fist, and the other one...wants to turn the world inside out and rule it with an iron fist.

Okay, let me try again. We'll clearly never be able to go beyond suspicion and innuendo about what's really behind Trump's warped infatuation with Putin and his little big man authoritarian governing style until the Donald releases his tax returns. Unfortunately, with the Replutocrats in power there are no real checks and no one with any real authority willing to use them to exact some accountability for this shameless trampling of political norms.

So unless the Democratic Party decides to unshackle itself from its own unsavory relationship with the country's financial elite, show some intestinal fortitude and reclaim its mantle as the protector of the vulnerable and marginalized, I'm afraid we're in for at least a four-year slide into becoming Banana Republic with Putin as the Banana-in-Chief and Trump as the chief banana picker, packer...or whatever.