The Occasional Joke

Nurse: Patient's name?

Centurion: Marcus Licinius Crassus

Nurse: And his date of birth?

Centurion: 115 BC.

Nurse: All right. And what is he here for?

Centurion: Cataphract surgery.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Is there a "red line" for political cartoonists?

Let me say that although Barack Obama is not, in my personal opinion, the greatest President we've ever had (for the record, that would be FDR), he's so much better than the two mindless idiots who ran against him and the mindless idiot who preceded him that there was never any question about who I'd support. I don't object to people criticizing him, though, when deserved and when conducted with either factual analysis or wit.

Likewise, although I don't always agree with him, I usually think Pat Oliphant is one of our better political cartoonists.

But his recent bit, showing Obama with none other than Richard Nixon, is over the top. Equating somebody with Nixon is not much more a) inflammatory and b) irresponsible than connecting him or her with Hitler. It's Internet-blog-commenter stuff. Oliphant was around for the Nixon years, and he should know better.

Frankly, if the White House did sic the IRS on the TeaBaggers, well, my left brain says "Oh, dear. That's not very good." But my right brain whispers to me that I'd have done much the same thing, except that it might have been Seal Team Six, not the IRS, that I'd have unleashed. This is why, as I've said over and over again, I will never run for office. The conflict between doing the right thing and the thing that feels right would kill me.

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