Being a political cartoonist must be nice. Like comedians, they can basically ridicule people with impunity while the subjects of their mockeries, if they complain, look like they have no sense of humor. What a deal. In this, the third collection of Cox and Forkum's works, the artists are at the top of their game. The drawings themselves are extremely good and very powerful while the commentary is cutting and direct. Of course, a good political cartoon is something more than just a good drawing about a relevant subject. It distills not only a large topic, but often an entire aspect of a cultural zeitgeist, into one picture that says it all. Using that standard, there are many, many good cartoons in this book.
Although the cartoons are fresh as of this writing, spanning from November 2004 to October 2006, one is struck by how often, even with only a bit of time in retrospect, they got it right. To take a couple of my favorite examples, John Bolton portrayed as a bull tapping on the window of the United Nations china shop absolutely hit it on the head as to how Bolton has actually acted as U.S Ambassador there - and let us all be very thankful for it! Continuing with the same theme, portraying Bolton as Darth Vader scaring the wits out of a couple of fleeing donkeys (Democrats) perfectly captures the Left's feelings of intimidation regarding the man and the ideas he represents, as is currently being demonstrated by Democrats in their attempt to prevent Bolton from returning to the U.N. despite having done an excellent job there.
As Cox and Forkum acknowledge, the big events between their last book and this one that makes political cartooning all the more relevant were the worldwide protests over drawings of Mohammed.Read more ›
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Like a lot of conservatives, I first discovered Cox & Forkum after 9-11, and like a lot of conservatives, I was initially thrilled by the implications of the title "Black & White World" because I, too, was heartily sick of the nonexistent "shades of gray" liberals kept imagining in order to avoid the obvious. However, after reading through a third book full of their cartoons, I have come to the unfortunate conclusion that in some areas their viewpoint is TOO "black & white", IMHO leading them into error.
The first is criticism of Bush administration war fighting and diplomacy. Though it was impossible to imagine that morning of our generation's Pearl Harbor, it is now clear in retrospect that President Bush faced the most difficult challenge of keeping America in the necessary fight of any POTUS since the last time the Democrat Party adopted a policy of treason this openly back in the Sixties...
and I DO mean the EIGHTEEN Sixties.
This task has required all sorts of tactics and strategies, from armed invasion to mealy-mouthed cajoling, all focused on the ultimate goal of defeating our enemies. None of this is or should be above criticism, especially in hindsight, but the accusations of stupidity and malfeasance included within this book were uncalled for. Bush was already being condemned in this way by our enemies in this war, such as France and the Democrat Party. He should not have had to endure it from those who should have been his allies.
Second, Cox & Forkum consistently failed to see the "shades of gray" in Islam. We are not YET in an all out war with Islam, and if we can manage it, we would be well off to avoid it.Read more ›
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