Sunday, February 15, 2009

Return of the Son of an Open Letter to Chuck Asay

Oh, Chuck. It had been a while since Slate featured one of your cartoons in their daily cartoon email (about the only thing I can routinely stand at Slate), and then, in close succession, Slate went and dropped two flaming bags of crap on my stoop, rang the bell, and ran like hell. And what bags of crap they are. First, this, which I suppose must be your take on the Obama stimulus plan:

Y'know, cartoonists don't usually have a lot of words to work with, so they have to choose them pretty carefully. This makes it all the more mystifying why you chose to have the sign over the lower door say "Bailouts." You see, bailouts are what Wall Street banks—you know, rich people?—are getting, presumably as a reward for their incompetence or something; if we're going to spend billions in taxpayer money on them then I for one would prefer to see them nationalized, temporarily at least, but I'm sure that the very thought of nationalization makes your testicles retract in terror, so let's not go there. But you might at least acknowledge the difference between government spending to stimulate economic activity and create jobs in hard times and government spending to reward bankers for incompetence. If you're capable of understanding the difference.

And then there was your charming take on President Obama and his Secretary of State:

Yep: Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton (former United States Senators both) are wide-eyed naifs; our enemies (all Muslims, apparently) are subhuman brutes. Except for the one who's a scoutmaster or something. What's up with that? I mean, the infantilizing of Democrats, the racist depiction of Muslims—these I understand. They're fairly standard tools in the right-wing cartoonist's box. But the Iraqi guy in the scoutmaster outfit with his hand in his pants greeting the two impressionable young children—what exactly was going on in your mind when you decided to mix that little bit of incongruity in with your otherwise troglodyte tropes?

I don't want to know, do I?


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