July 24, 2016
Art, politics, angels, demons . . . and righteous dogs.

Devil’s Food

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Monday begins our two-week conventionmania. Please join me at
https://www.facebook.com/villagevoice/
for LIVE convention coverage during each night starting at 7PM. I will be posting in real time for the 8 days from our posh high tech media command center outside of Cleveland (actually way-outside Cleveland, like the UWS.)
In today’s Voice catch my preview.
Including these rock solid predictions:

On Monday Trump puts deal together to buy the Quicken Loans Arena and turn it into a casino. On Tuesday Trump delegates are sold investment opportunities on this. He files for Chapter 11 by Wednesday. Mysteriously catches fire on Thursday.

Street protests get ugly, led by the Bush family, John McCain, Kelly Ayotte, Lindsey Graham, Rob Portman and Mitt Romney. They set the Trump logo alight using a bag of Cheetos.

In “Salute to Mexicans”, The Rockettes do a Mariachi number in a huge taco bowl. Soon they are removed by security guards. The bowl becomes co-op residence for the Saudi royal family who join in a rousing dance number with golf clubs.

Top pols tapped for Trump nominating speeches include Vladimir Putin, Bashir al-Assad, Kim Jong Un, Robert Mugabe and Fattah al-sisi.

Ted Cruz nails important speaking slot, setting the immediate agenda for the GOP.

In a speech aimed at Jewish voters Trump asserts he never takes off his beaver hat.

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For Sunday’s NY Times Arts and Leisure cover. How Trump and Clinton see the media. Verrry differently, I suspect.

Recently Jake Tapper had me as a guest on State of the Union. He briefly backed away from his cartoonist’s chair and let me swing out.  Thanks all!

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This week The Nation covers the uncovering of  Brexitmania.

My cover featuring these right honorable gentlemen and gentlewomen:

Top to bottom: Nicola Sturgeon, David Cameron, Queen Elizabeth II, Alan Johnson, Michael Gove, Peter Mandelson, Arron Banks, Theresa May, Nigel Farage, George Galloway, Boris Johnson, Jeremy Corbyn, and Hilary Benn.­ Big help from and thanks to Robert Best, Roane Carey, Katrina vanden Heuvel.

Brexit Detail

 

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Breaking news: The Trump Cabinet Just Announced (exclusive to this caricaturist!)

For the Boston Globe.

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And . . . the Hillary Cabinet as well!

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So grateful for all the years teaching (and getting taught by my students.)

Thanks to the Observer for this from last year and all new classes starting soon.

Amazed and delighted today to see my American Illustration piece “Toy Fascist” for The Village Voice get the big time announcement in the Voice today.

Thanks to Tom Carlson and everyone at the Voice and all the judges at AI-AP.  Illustration seldom gets attention on this level. Very gratifying when it does.

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The Battle of Brooklyn, for The Boston Globe! You just know it’s love!!

Thanks Omar Vega!

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As if Hillary Clinton needed more problems. In the NY Observer.

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For the Voice. The little fellow never knew what hit him.

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Bernie gets to sign autographs in the South. For The GlobeHillary and Bernie signs600

Hillary proves equally popular in Georgetown.

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For the Washington Post: how people are dealing with Trump.

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For Esquire.com: Kathleen Kane and the destructive politics of sexism.

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And the wars it started.

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Ted Cruz, man of the people, has endured a lifetime of persecution from the media and other Eastern elites. His Texas style down-home approach rarely suggests who brung ‘im. From the Life of Cruz, for the Globe.

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Growing up, Cruz was shaped by several people. As a child, he was a student of Rolland Storey, who maintained that the US government only takes from its citizens. Cruz also paid heed to W. Cleon Skousen, an ex-FBI agent who cited the Tenth Amendment in arguing that the federal government may not assume powers that aren’t explicitly detailed in the Constitution. At Princeton, Cruz was influenced by Robert George, who believed in “New Natural Law,” an offshoot of Christian conservatism that maintains fetuses should be granted constitutional rights. Cruz’s father, Rafael Cruz, a Cuban-born Christian minister, is known for making jaw-dropping pronouncements. He told BuzzFeed News that LGBT activists will try to “legalize pedophiles.”

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As a star Princeton debater, Cruz grasped the power of language and had a remarkable ability to frame ideas. In a senior thesis promoting states’ rights, he said he would “elaborate upon a conception of the Ninth and Tenth Amendments which revitalizes the Founders’ commitment to limiting government, thinking of the US government’s commitment to its people as frozen as of about 1789.

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In 2003, he was appointed Texas solicitor general. He argued before the US Supreme Court nine times — all but once in his role as solicitor general. Five of the cases involved the death penalty. In 2005, he successfully made the case for a Ten Commandments monument on state capitol grounds in Austin.

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In 2012, backed by the Tea Party, he earned the Republican nomination to the US Senate by beating establishment candidate Texas Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst in a runoff election that gained national attention. (Cruz later easily won the seat.) Among his pronouncements, he said businessman/philanthropist George Soros wanted the federal government to close golf courses in the name of the environment.

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His arrival in Washington, D.C., in 2013 was, in many ways, a continuation of a larger campaign Cruz had been running for years. More like a political revolutionary than a legislator, he engaged in a ongoing drive to present himself as the tribune of the angry, extreme religious right. He tied up Senate business with a 21-hour filibuster condemning the Affordable Care Act, which stood no chance of being repealed. In the course of his oratory marathon, Cruz referenced Ashton Kutcher, Toby Keith, and Darth Vader. He also read from Ayn Rand and Dr. Suess’ “Green Eggs and Ham.” He’s not well liked on the Hill.

 

This New Years weekend, The LA Times and I collaborated on these full page Op- ed predictions for 2016. Of course all are guaranteed to come true, except for the ones that don’t. Thanks to Susan Brenneman, editor, Wes Bausmith, designer.

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In next’s week’s Nation.

The Combover.

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Our recent trip to Denmark included a visit to Samsø island, where people are warm and CO2 is better than neutral. For Nautilus magazine and Len Small, who helped in many ways with this project.  Also thanks to Erik Petri and my beautiful wife Cynthia who were right and left arms on the journey . Above is the Samsø Golfklub, where the lake is pumped by solar, the pesticide-free soil returns the nutrient-filled water to the lake. The grass is cut by very healthy sheep who yield manure, wool and sometimes, lamb chops. And golfers get a great game (sometimes).

See the whole story here.

Refugee mania of the last week has taken Campaign 2016 off the rails. The Top Quotes of the Week tell the tale:

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For Politico’s  fascinating story about Mike Huckabee and the nexus of religion and media. Looking for God in all the wrong places.

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For the LA Times, my piece on how the GOP finally takes Trump down included this shot discovered from Trump’s wedding:

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This portrait of Trump, for Time magazine (almost a cover), was a distillation of many sketches and taking a real journey with an art director. Thanks, DW Pine for taking this baby for a spin.

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For our Dumbest Quotes of the Month, of course, guess who? Here’s the Dumpster himself unloading on poor Charles Krauthammer, who did NOT have it coming.

 

 

 

Latest from the hot summer griddle:  Scott Walker for The Nation. Cover and opener. Yes, I know, unfair to Nixon!  Thanks to Robert Best AD, Roane Carey Ed and Katrina vanden Heuvel, EIC. Here’s the excellent story by John Nichols.

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Ernie Moniz, the fixer. Climate and Iran. Thanks to Greg Klee, AD, The Boston Globe Magazine.

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This month Garden and Gun and the kickin’ AD Marshall McKinney and I cooked up a 45th anniversary tribute to Deliverance. Text went down the middle, surrounded by the cast of the film (including Banjo Boy). Author James Dickey in the upper right, as an officer in the film, proved, it turns out, as daunting a challenge as any backwoods buckaroos. STORY HERE.

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Here’s GQ’s Dumb Quote of the Month.

Jeb Bush: “I don’t know what was on the mind or the heart of the man who committed these atrocious crimes,” the sage of Sarasota said in reacting to a hate-crime of earthquake proportions. If the GOP race is a competition in cluelessness or willful denial, then Lumpy is clearly a frontrunner.

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So happy this week to work with Tom Carlson of The Village Voice, coming up this cover for Pride Week and Farm Borough, which, it happens, occur on the same weekend. Here’s our solution to the question of how to display them both.

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It was great fun this week to do a cover of Preet Bharara for The Nation. The US attorney for the Southern District of NY has successfully broken up the fabled “three men in the room” in Albany: Sheldon Silver, Andrew Cuomo and Dean Skelos, the three deal-makers who have replaced democracy in NY State. First he indicted Silver and tomorrow it looks like Skelos is about to fall as well. Interesting to be on top of the news and then get scooped the next day. Great thanks to Robert Best AD, Roane Carey ED, William D. Cohan, whose great profile of Preet this is based on, and our EIC Katrina vanden Heuvel.  The Dream Team.

Cuomo Skelos Here’s the original image done for a recent Newsweek cover. Had great fun on this. Thanks to Robert Priest, Grace Lee, designers, Jim Impoco, our intrepid EIC.

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And for Hollywood Reporter’s recent New York issue: Michael’s Restaurant and its frequent frequenters: Barry Diller, Bill Clinton, Katie Couric, Tom Brokaw, Hoda Kotb, Bonnie Hammer, Plus Michael McCarty. Thanks Christine Park and Peter Cury!

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Recent Dumb Quotes for GQ. Thanks Martin Salazar, Fred Woodward!
The Nation celebrates its 150 anniversary this month with a splashy 200+ page special issue. I am very honored to have been asked to participate. I chose to highlight the six most influential editors going back to right after the Civil War. Next to each is a scrambled doodle concoction of pertinent events. The Nation is essential reading for me each week and has been for over 20 years. American history is a recurring dream (or nightmare) with many of the same events getting up in new clothes before coming at us again. Greed, poverty, racism, war, reform.  We see them anew each generation. Seeing how all the generations of activists have dealt with them makes us stronger for the current and battles to come. Especially given current events, The Nation has never been more urgently needed than right now.

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On the cover of last Sunday’s Times Style section:

The View. Thanks to Rodrigo Honeywell, AD

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Hellzapoppin’ this week. This piece for The New Republic’s meditation on the Pope’s new Climate action. Thanks to designer Andrew Horton. Story here.

 

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My GQ Dumbest Quotes of the Month are in and they ain’t pretty. Intrepid designer Martin Salazar brings them to life here: GQ.

Thanks to him, the legendary Fred Woodward and the quotable celebs for this month’s journey.

 

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Finally some good news for the GOP Congress.

They’re in the Communication Arts Annual! Congrats guys! Also thanks to Robert Best, Katrina vanden Heuvel, my intrepid editors at The Nation!

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This week it was my great honor to be profiled in the NY Observer by Cynthia Cotts on the ideas of some the leading professors in NY! Grateful to her and the NY Observer.

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Great thanks this week to Lauren Draper and the gang at The NY Observer for this fun cover of music wizard Jason Flom. Special thanks to Katy Perry and Jessie J!

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Newsweek, back and beautiful.

The Amazing Island of Samsø

IMG_2336                During our recent visit to Denmark Cynthia and I made a trip to Samsø Island, a place of miracles. In the late ’90’s the residents made up their collective mind to go green: develop existing renewable energy technologies to go carbon neutral and eventually carbon-free. In 10 years, not only were they CO2 neutral but were producing so much additional energy that they sold 25% of it back to the mainland . . . at a handsome profit. All this was accomplished with established tech: wind, solar, geo thermal, biomass. Clearly what they have achieved is easier in an island of 3700, where the wind never stops blowoing and the sun shines much of the year. But in a salute to the world leaders meeting now in Paris Len Small, Nautilus magazine, my amazing wife Cynthia and good pal Erik Petri (who both helped in countless ways) brought back this story, appearing now online as well as in four spreads in the upcoming issue. Great help also from editor, Ariel Bleicher. Hope this stimulates good ideas on our side of the pond.

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Soren Hermansen

“The story began with Svend Auken, our brave Minister for the Environment,” says Soren Hermansen, who runs the Energy Academy on the Danish island of Samsø, an emerald comma in the Kattegat Sea. “When he returned from the United Nations climate change conference in 1997, he announced, ‘Now we need to start the green revolution in Denmark.’ That was very brave and very crazy.”

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To get people excited about the idea, Auken set up a competition between municipalities for the best plan for going carbon-neutral in 10 years. When Samsø won, it became Denmark’s “renewable-energy island.” Hermansen, then a teacher, rock musician, and self-described rabble-rouser, took it upon himself to see that his native island lived up to its new name.

He brought consultants—and beer—to community meetings to try to convince his neighbors, many of them conservative farmers, to take up the cause. But the consultants weren’t getting through. So Hermansen sent them home. “Instead of telling people what they should do, I had to address the fear of change.” He told them that renewable technologies—wind turbines, solar arrays, biomass plants—would bring jobs and, better yet, money. Through subsidies, the government guaranteed a stable price for wind-generated power for 10 years, meaning investors could recoup their costs after seven or eight and start making a healthy profit.

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That perked up their ears. Meeting by meeting, Samsingers—farmers, plumbers, schoolteachers, grocers—began to band together behind the project. When it finally got off the ground in the late 1990s, Samsø was putting 11 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere every year. But by 2001, residents had cut their fossil fuel use by half. In 2003, they began exporting electricity to the mainland. Today the island produces from renewable sources 25 percent more energy than it consumes.

What makes Samsø’s story so remarkable, however, isn’t this fast transformation from carbon polluter to renewable-energy producer. It’s how it happened: Samsø owes its success not to a collective environmental idealism, but to its residents’ brass-tacks business sense.

“The wind always blows here,” Morton Holst, a grain farmer on Samsø told me. The steady resource allows the island to generate around 105 million kilowatt-hours per year with 11 land turbines, 10 offshore ones, and a smattering of micro-models. Residents use only about 24 percent of this electricity. They sell the rest.Holst Grain Farmer Final

Ole Kaempe, a teacher on the island, and his wife Hedvig Hauge can see the turbine in which they invested from their farmhouse, whirring away beyond their vineyard. “Two of the wind turbines were offered to everybody; you could buy shares,” Kaempe says. “There was a lottery because too many people wanted in.”

Listening to the low drone of his turbine now, he says, he hears the “music” of income.

Ole Kaempe Hedvig Hauge Kaempe Geo Thermal Pipes

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The geothermal pipes bring warm water up all  winter. It moves through a pump which, when hit with refrigerant, results in very hot water, which then moves through internal heating pipes to radiators in their home.

Two decades ago, most Samsingers heated their homes with oil hauled in on tankers. Then Hermansen and others got together and calculated that residents could save up to 50 percent on their heating bills if they replaced their furnaces with pumps that drew hot water, through underground pipes, from district heating plants.

Straw Plant

Arne Jensen runs three plants fueled by straw bales, which he buys from local farmers. (A fourth plant burns wood chips.) “It takes two and a half kilos of this stuff to replace one kilo of oil,” he says. “This plant processes 1,600 tons a year. If they replaced that with oil, they would have to spend 20 million Danish krones [about $2.9 million], five times as much. That would be 20 million going out of the community. Instead, the money stays here.”

Here’s the track the straw moves on. It gets chopped very fine and sifted before burning.

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The Kiln. Believe me, it is hot.

The process is also, more or less, carbon neutral. The CO2 released during burning simply displaces the carbon that would have entered the atmosphere naturally, as the straw decomposed. Even the ash is repurposed as fertilizer.

 

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Samsø Golfklub, tucked in the island’s northeast corner, is a kind of microcosmic showcase of the community’s embracement of sustainability. The club’s carts and mowers are solar-powered, and golfers carry hand-held weeders so they can do spot maintenance as they play.

My Life With Hillary

This is currently live on Politico:
As we greet the return of Hillary Rodham Clinton to the political stage, it cannot be denied that she is unique in many ways. One of these is an almost unheard-of political longevity. Players in politics seldom hold onto front-runner status after 23 years in the public eye. In spite of great controversies (and one very big loss) Hillary, most definitely, still does.

Of all political figures today, she may be the most durable because of her multifaceted nature, appealing to both hawks and liberals, activists and business tycoons. Whatever you say about her, there is almost always some evidence pointing to the opposite. This also applies to the way I rendered her over the decades. My approach shifted as did her shape. So without any discernible theme, here are some 28 Hillarys that have haunted my career as well as my dreams.
My great thanks to Janet Michaud, designer, Susan Glasser editor, Lori Kelly, Katelyn Fossett, Garrett Graff. And especially to Jeff Bartholet for the inspiration for this project.

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Improve on “Redskins”? That’s Easy.

In today’s Washington Post: my top picks for a new name for the Redskins. What’s yours? Online here.

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Renaming the Redskins

In Sunday’s Washington Post! My six picks for a name that better reflects the Beltway Real.

See all 6 HERE.Gippers