Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009: Full Plate for Obama

Thanksgiving 2009 Cartoon, originally uploaded by rbtenorio.

Despite the economic slowdown and the other turmoils of 2009, Frank Faust realizes he has a lot to be thankful for in a Turkey Day episode of "The Devil Made Me Blog It"!
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Barack, Berlin and the End of Racism?

Berlin Wall Cartoon, originally uploaded by rbtenorio.

Twenty years ago, Communism crumbled with the fall of the Berlin Wall. The intellectual Frank Fukuyama called the fall of Communism “the end of history.” The Devil compares the historical moment of 1989 with that of 2008, when Barack Obama won the presidential election. Does the election of the first African-American president mean the end of racism in the US? Read more in the latest episode of “The Devil Made Me Blog It” – and feel free to weigh in on the debate!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Sarah Palin: Hotspur of the Moment

Discussing her autobiography "Going Rogue" with Oprah Winfrey on Monday, Sarah Palin came off as someone who fell prey to her emotions. The closest parallel was of another "Hotspur," from a play over 400 years old -- Harry Percy, anti-hero of the Shakespearean drama "1 Henry IV."
Both Palin and Percy suffer because of their emotions. On "Oprah," the former Republican vice-presidential candidate addressed her biggest failure during the 2008 campaign: The disastrous interview with Katie Couric. Palin provided some context: She was soaring in confidence following popular acclaim, which made Couric's questions -- such as what newspapers she read -- seem like an affront. Yet in blaming Couric for the candidate's poor performance, Palin came off as tempestuous as Shakespeare's Hotspur when he told King Henry IV that he did not give His Highness his prisoners of war because ... a royal official offended him.

I then, all smarting with my wounds being cold -- To be so pestered with a popinjay! -- Out of my grief and my impatience/Answered neglectingly, I know not what...

Hotheadedness is a bad quality in a leader. It dooms Hotspur's rebellion; he alienates allies and fights a fatal battle with the King. And while Palin's publicity is rising with her "Oprah" appearance and book tour, her tempestuousness may quash any hopes she might have for national political success. A nation embroiled in two wars and an economic crisis cannot have a commander-in-chief who governs by snap decisions.
Palin should use last fall's defeat as a chance to reflect. Her running mate, Sen. John McCain, apparently learned from his primary loss to George W. Bush in 2000, and used this knowledge to win the presidential nomination last year. If she wants to emulate McCain's success, Palin should start thinking about a more levelheaded approach.
So let's hope Palin has fun on her book tour ... and that when it's all over, she takes a good look at her shameless eggers-on like Ann Coulter and Glenn Beck and thinks to herself a modern-day version of what the true hero of "1 Henry IV," Prince Hal, speaks in a soliloquy:
I know you all, and will a while uphold/The unyoked humour of your idleness. Yet herein will I imitate the sun,/Who doth permit the base contagious clouds/To smother up his beauty from the world, That when he please again to be himself, Being wanted he may be more wondered at...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Sarah Palin Comic Book Party!

Come one, come all to the release party for my new comic book, “The Devil and Sarah Palin.” It's at Hub Comics at 19 Bow Street in Union Square, Somerville, on Sunday, Nov. 15, from 4-6 p.m. – two days before Palin's autobiography hits the shelves!

There will be refreshments at Sunday's party, which has already drawn advance notice from the Weekly Dig!

Did Palin strike a Faustian bargain when she accepted the Republican vice-presidential nomination last year? “The Devil and Sarah Palin” chronicles Palin's political career. Along the way, she receives advice from a political consultant more devious than Karl Rove … namely the Devil himself!

“The Devil and Sarah Palin” was a smash hit at the Boston Comic Con last month, selling out on the first day of the two-day event. Fans were still asking about it on the second day.

Abandon All Hope on Health Care?

Senate Health Care Cartoon, originally uploaded by rbtenorio.

My latest cartoon is about the next hurdle for health-care reform in the Senate following Saturday's victory in the House. Anyone know which author inspired the sign Satan places above the Senate chamber?

Monday, November 2, 2009

McCain and Frankenstein Republicans

Halloween may be over, but one of its enduring legends – the tale of Frankenstein – is still with us for the 2009 election season.
Last year, Sen. John McCain played the role of Dr. Frankenstein when he ran for president. He entered the election as a maverick, famous for defying George W. Bush in 2000 and for embracing compromise with the “Gang of 14” in 2005. But like Dr. Frankenstein in Mary Shelley's story, McCain tried an audacious experiment. He attempted to create new life in a party that found RINOs like himself unappealing by choosing hard-core Republican Sarah Palin as his running mate.

McCain apparently forgot that the Frankenstein monster ends up turning against his hapless creator. Palin aptly titled her upcoming autobiography “Going Rogue,” for she drew criticism for not staying in lockstep with McCain during the campaign. And while the McCain-Palin ticket lost the election, the right-wing specter McCain created is more powerful than ever.

Consider what happened, appropriately enough, on Halloween. New York Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava, the choice of her state party establishment to run for Congress, pulled out of the race. Conservative critics charged that the pro-abortion Scozzafava was not right-wing enough. Their support of an alternative candidate, Doug Hoffman of the Conservative Party, prompted Scozzafava's withdrawal.

Scozzafava is the latest sign of the power of the Frankenstein Republicans against their establishment creators. One of McCain's fellow RINOs, Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, defected to the Democrats earlier this year after facing stiff intra-party opposition from right-wing candidate Pat Toomey.

We shall see whether the Republican establishment can control its creations better than Dr. Frankenstein ever could.