Below is the latest The Pain -- When Will It End?
Updated 01/29/03

Artist's Statement

During the month that I was drawing the Four Freedoms cartons, I ought to have been saving up ideas for lots of cartoons that would just come pouring out of me once I was done with that series. Instead of course I just drank and goofed off like always. The only vague idea I got was to do something about the Bush administration's use of the accusation "class warfare" to discredit anyone who points out that the Bush administration is engaging in class warfare. Except that when the deadline came I found I had no idea how to do a cartoon about this. It was one of those (increasingly common) situations in which the reality is so obviously ridiculous that it's impossible to parody. I spent all day Sunday pacing and moping around my apartment and doing little procrastinaty things. I knew I had to get something drawn that day because Monday, the day of my deadline, I was going to a protest at the U.N. (I'm up in New York for the winter now.) Late in the afternoon I finally began drawing a cartoon that I'm not even going to describe, it was so embarassingly didactic and unfunny, except to say it was exactly the sort of cartoon that would appear in Z Magazine--my personal standard of failure. Then my friend Alex called to ask would I like to go see The Two Towers, which I'd already seen three times. I explained that I had to finish a cartoon but said maybe I'd call him back if I got enough work done, but it wasn't likely. My favorite part this time was at the very end when Aragorn and Theoden ride out into a black sea of their enemies while Gimli blasts the great deep horn in a last glorious gesture of futile defiance and then Gandalf and Eomer lead a charge straight down the fucking mountainside with the dawn rising behind them. But it was on the way home that I got my first glimmering of a good idea for a cartoon, which was to illustrate the absurdity of the buzzword "class warfare" by depicting other, even more absurd examples of "warfare."

Early the next morning I rode the subway into Manhattan with fellow cartoonist Megan Kelso, my comrade-at-arms at all antiwar marches and rallies. As per my usual M.O. I impressed her into gag-writing service for me. I believe Megan came up with all the categories of warfare depicted here--Race, Gender, and the best one, "Warfare Warfare," and her contribution is hereby gratefully acknowledged. But I mean I did come up with the little individual scenarios and had to draw them and everything. It's not like I do nothing around here.

By the way: every person I saw being loaded into the paddy wagon at the U.N. protest was a pretty girl. Your guess here is as good as mine. I for one am picturing scenes out of Caged Heat or Women in Chains, except with pretty, self-righteous, leftist, pot-smoking, bisexuality-experimenting college chicks. Some friends have argued that I was a fool not to get myself arrested with them. These people misunderstand my priorities.