Entry for December 31, 2005

Happy New Year.  The Roanoke County library will be closed until January 3, so will have to post my entries for January 1 and 2 then.  I was interested to pick up a copy of the Roanoke Times and read the letters to the editor complaining about its far-left slant and the fiction of global warming.  The above cartoon is by New Zealand’s Ross D. Kettle, a cartoonist conservatives love to hate.  His website is named, for some reason, www.dorkinglabs.com.

I hadn’t thought about the political bent of cartoonists, until someone in the library yesterday who was showing me Daryl Cagle’s Professional Cartoonists Index and asked me if I was a Bush fan, because I wouldn’t find many conservative cartoonists.  Maybe that’s why I like political cartoons.  In his blog for December 27 (no permalinks, you’ll have to scroll down) he quotes cartoonist Scott Stantis explanation::

You and I both know that a vast majority of cartoonists are liberal or at the very least left of center. Many folks over the years have asked why. One aspect of this question that doesn’t seem to be addressed is temperament. Cartoonists are, first and foremost, (regardless of the snobs), artists. And most artists are radical in their outlook. The good ones, any way. To see the world in a new and expressive way would tend to make the artist one that screams for a fundamental shift in the dominant paradigm. To be an artist means to see things in a new way. To remove oneself from the fray and observe life from an objective perch. Could any one not see what fools these mortals be? Apply this to a political outlook and you can get some pretty radical and often outlandish viewpoints.

On a personal note, I consider myself a radical. Ronald Reagan inspired me to embrace an agenda that you would have to admit, definitely radically changed the political landscape. Not just in this country but around the world. It is that kind of radical conservatism, (or classical liberalism, if you choose), that drives me as a commentator and an artist.

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