Below is the latest The Pain -- When Will It End?

Updated 12/17/08


Note: I decided not to run last week’s cartoon because it was just too stupid.

Artist's Statement

Ever since the election I have lost all interest in politics, and it's been a struggle to come up with any topical cartoons. This week a friend started complaining to me this week about how this Illinois gubernatorial imbroglio is only the start of another eight-year-long relentless Republican search for some Whitewater/ Lewinski/ Whatever scandal to cripple or destroy Obama's Presidency, and I all but made the international yap-yap-yap gesture at her. I am so, like, Whatever, dude. All I ever wanted was to have someone who wasn't unrepentantly evil or functionally retarded in the oval office. Currently the only news story in the world that interests me is whether Muntader Al-Zaidi, the journalist who threw his shoes at Geroge Bush, gets out of jail.

This will be the first in an intermittent series of commemorative portraits of the Bush Administration. I am indebted for this portrait to my old Jägerbuddy Elena, who, after Condoleezza Rice’s appearance at the 9/11 commission’s hearings, described her as “The Angriest Little Princess in Storybookland.” In fact I began to write this very caption out in that elaborate gothic script that is so time-consuming, but then decided that the sparkly little tiara and dress and scepter pretty much said it all. Condoleezza Rice has been much doted upon by the media, mostly because she is pretty (by Washington, D.C. standards, meaning presentable on camera). She's reknowned for her talent as a classical pianist, but the fucking Nazis were cultured. She may be working on Brahms’s Second Piano Concerto but she'd have an easier time with those octaves and sixths and tricky rhythms without all that blood on her fingers. She’s generally accounted one of the smartest people in Washington, which means about as much as being called a “genius” in Hollywood. A reputation for intelligence is not exactly hard to come by in a business in which people like Newt Gingrich and Grover Norquist are considered your deep thinkers.

Condoleezza, in turn, once called George Bush one of the most intelligent men she’d ever met, which would be an astonishing statement coming from pretty much anybody outside of Texas, let alone someone who’s had the opportunity to meet people like Nelson Mandela. Rice apparently has a history of attaching herself to powerful male mentors and then thinking exactly what those men think, adopting their worldviews and ideologies, a more insidious and contemptible kind of intellectual toadyism than honest sycophancy. If she is in fact intelligent, she is way more culpable for the atrocities of the Bush Administration than if she were an idiot, because she’s willfully submitted her own intellectual powers to the mind and will of a man far stupider than she. The notorious, mortifying moment when she referred to George Bush as "my husband" suggests there may be more than a fundamental weak-mindedness or unresolved father-figure issues at work here. She's abetted the deaths of hundreds of thousands of civilians and made the United States the single most hated nation on earth for her boyfriend. For all her supposed integrity and smarts she’s a liar and a fool, a shivering toy poodle in the lap of a child despot.

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