Stuff Happens

cjones10062015 Jeb Bush’s reaction to the mass shooting in Oregon was “stuff happens.” Afterward he said his quote was taken out of context. The presidential candidate’s actual quote is: “We’re in a difficult time in our country and I don’t think that more government is necessarily the answer to this. I think we need to reconnect ourselves with everybody else. It’s just, it’s very sad to see. But I resist the notion — and I did, I had this, this challenge as governor, because we have, look, stuff happens, there’s always a crisis and the impulse is always to do something and it’s not necessarily the right thing to do.” So doing something is not necessarily the right thing to do. I’m glad we set the context straight here. He’s playing to the gun lobby and conservative voters. Those who believe there should not be anymore regulations on firearms and that we probably need more guns in society (because that’s been working out so well so far). Do nothing. Shrug shoulders. What exactly does this guy plan to do if elected? I know if he becomes president a lot of people will be saying something “happens.” It will start with an “S” but it won’t be “stuff.”

This was my second idea. I had my first idea all day Tuesday but I held of drawing it because I was afraid it might be obvious and another cartoonist would draw it. Actually I felt one particular cartoonist would draw it. I’m not psychic. Maybe it’s because I’ve been a fan of his for over 25 years and we both think weird. Yes, he drew a variation on it and I think it was better than my original idea. Here it is.


Whose Quagmire Is It Anyway?


Does everyone in the United States have short memories? It was just a couple years ago Obama had  a serious hankering to start bombing Syrian troops. Public opposition derailed his plans and today we’re yelling at him for not doing anything. We are a fickle people.

Donald Trump thinks it’s a good thing Putin’s Russia is in Syria. I would agree with him if Putin wasn’t using the guise of fighting terrorism to actually fight those who oppose a brutal dictator. Putin’s venture into Syria doesn’t have anything to do with fighting terrorism and is only a venture to stabilize Assad.

We’re going to take as much action on Putin in Syria as we did with Putin in Ukraine, or Putin in Georgia (not the Georgia Jimmy Carter’s from).

Here in the United States, nobody has an answer for Syria. All we have is criticism. Criticism isn’t all bad, unless it’s all you got…and you’re a political cartoonist.

I also find it bizarre that conservatives seem to be idolizing Putin, take him at his word and state that he’s so honest. Admire a Russian strongman who’s overcompensating for something while you create lies about your American president. Such patriotism. Maybe Putin reminds them of Bush and they can see his soul.

I was wondering what an actual “Quagmire” would look like, other than quicksand. When I did a Google Image search, I got this.

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A Ban To End Gun Violence


Another mass shooting at another school. The president is tired of making speeches about these things. I’m getting tired of drawing cartoons about it but I’m not a politician who will ignore it, or offer condolences and not action.

An editor at one my client newspapers graduated from Umpqua Community College in Oregon, where the latest shooting took place Thursday. I know he’s having a hard time this week. These shootings have come close to home in Virginia for me. Someone mentioned that people may have to know someone affected by gun violence before they’ll make any efforts to end this insanity. At this rate, everyone will be touched soon enough.

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Meet The New Boss


Same as the old boss.

What’s a gaffe in Washington? When a politician accidentally speaks the truth.

Examples are Republicans admitting that voter ID laws are only created to decrease votes for Democrats, or when Mitch McConnell admitted Senate and House Republicans only interest was to make Obama a one-term president. Then there was that time on the campaign trail Mitt Romney said he didn’t care about the 47% (because they felt they were victims and were entitled to the government for free stuff).

Good politics doesn’t always equal good government.

California congressman Kevin McCarthy is probably going to replace John Boehner as Speaker of the House. What he said Wednesday isn’t really a gaffe or a freudian slip (saying something you’re thinking that you shouldn’t say) since he meant to say it, which he later tried to clarify. He stated that the Benghazi investigations, which they created a special committee for, is part of a strategy to destroy Hillary Clinton politically. Well we knew that. It’s just surprising that big mouth actually fessed up to it.

His actual quote is “Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she’s untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened, had we not fought.”

I wonder if Republicans get the irony where he says we can’t trust Hillary Clinton while he admits they’re wasting government money on personal vendettas.

Right now Hillary is sending probably sending him an Amazon gift card as a gift for his new office. Thanks for the new right-wing conspiracy.

Of course politics is always played in government and legislating but at some point our elected officials should actually attempt to legislate. Stop all the pointless investigations into Benghazi, email and Planned Parenthood and stop wasting time trying to vote out Obamacare. Stop wasting our money on your frivolous little adventures.

I started to put a label on John Boehner but I didn’t like the way it looked. Besides, he’s orange. He’s smoking a cigarette. Screw it. The readers should know it’s John Boehner. I’m really going to miss drawing him. All I’ve done over the past few years was draw an orange Bob Dole with a cigarette.

Have you ever seen the Speaker’s gavel? It’s symbolically huge. It’s like Thor’s hammer here and Kevin McCarthy isn’t worthy.

I’m gonna try something new for a while:

About a year ago I set up a tip bucket (it’s on the right side of this page). About a week after setting it up someone actually gave me a tip. Cool. Since then, nothing else. Aw.

Several months ago I allowed WordPress to put ads on my page. I figured nobody would look at them. I never look at ads. I kill them on news pages as soon as possible. They’re annoying. But somebody must be looking at them. WordPress surprised me yesterday and deposited a payment into my Paypal account. I was impressed. Not impressed with the amount of the payment but just the mere fact there was one. This website has now officially paid for itself (though not for the time and maintenance, just the costs).

A friend who looks at this website every single day said “hey, you should put up a tip bucket.” I said there is a tip bucket. She had never noticed it before. So maybe nobody’s seeing it.

I don’t like asking for money. I have never advertised it. Nobody owes me anything and I’m glad you’re reading the cartoons for free. But it’s hard to eat when nobody pays you. Right now I am making my living on newspapers mailing me tiny monthly checks. Occasionally I get a commissioned assignment to create a cartoon or illustration for a publication. Some of my clients are very lackadaisical about putting a check in the mail. Most of them get around to it but sometimes they wait three months, or longer and they need a nudge. Enough whining.

If you want show appreciation financially and you have a few bucks, anything contributed is appreciated. It’s appreciated a LOT. I know most people can’t and a lot of my readers are scraping by themselves.  But all contributions won’t just feed me and a Beagle and go toward rent. It will also go toward pens, paper and other assorted art and computer supplies. I’m not going to go on a shopping spree even though I my Converse have holes and I haven’t bought a new shirt or jeans in over two years. Really. Now I’m done whining.

I’m going to start posting a note (for a while at least) about the Paypal tip button. I’ll make it short.

Whether you tip or not, thank you very much for reading, laughing, hating, cursing, liking, commenting and sharing. It’s all greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Kim Davis Meets The Pope


When news hit Tuesday night that homophobic Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis had a secret private meeting with the Pope, most people reacted “wha’aaaaaaaaaaat?”

There was a lot of doubt. The Pope was riding high on good will from the United States. Why would he meet with such a hater?

The Pope gave a talk about conscientious objectors in public service. The only problem is, Kim Davis is not a conscientious objector. If she was, she would have quit her clerking job.

The Pope’s meeting with her was supposed to stay quiet until after he left the country which makes sense he’d want to be out of the country when the public found out he was BFFing with America’s current number one bigot.

Way to go, Pope.

A Stake On Planned Parenthood


I don’t really like to depict women as witches. But what else am I supposed to do when there’s a witch hunt? Besides, conservatives love to depict Hillary Clinton as a witch so let them enjoy these apples.

Congress has the wrong guy. Planned Parenthood has been cleared of wrongdoing by seven investigations. The videos taking aim at PP has been proven to be a hoax. Planned Parenthood is not selling body parts, they’re not in the abortion for profit business, and abortion is still legal. Yet they’re the one’s being investigated.

The anti abortion group, the Center for Medical Progress (HA!) is connected to Operation Rescue which is affiliated with people who have committed violence against doctors and abortion clinics. You know, affiliated with terrorists. Yet, Republicans want to follow their lead.

The videos are fake.

Carly Fiorina is a liar.

At Tuesday’s Congressional hearing, the republicans even had to pull out graphs with bogus information supplied by an anti-abortion group (and claimed they got it from Planned Parenthood’s books).

Now tell me, who really needs to be investigated?

If you’re going to shut the government down can you at least do it over something factual? It doesn’t matter how many times a Republicans says it’s true (they’re chopping up babies, selling body parts, breaking the law), it doesn’t make it true.

Stop wasting our time. Stop wasting our money. Do your freaking job and leave those alone who aren’t breaking the law. Investigate the Center for Medical Progress.

Getting Serious With Putin


Golly, did Vladimir Putin dis Obama at Monday’s meeting at the United Nations? You can bet rubles on it.

Putin has a history of throwing his weight around world leaders. Knowing German leader Angela Merkel has a fear of dogs, Putin brought his huge labrador into their meetings. So yesterday he chose to make Obama wait 20 minutes for their lunch date.  What a nice guy. I’m sure there’s something more important than meeting with the leader of the free world.

The United States wants Bashar Assad out of Syria. Russia thinks we have to work with him. Francois Hollande, president of France put it best saying “you can’t put together victims and the people who are killing them. Assad is the origin of this problem, and cannot be part of the solution”.

Hard truth time. Putin makes good points regarding fighting ISIS, but they’re wrong about Assad. When Russia helps Assad fight ISIS, Assad will most likely be targeting rebels in his civil war, and civilians.

Other hard truth: Obama has no strategy for Syria. It will be his only failure in the eyes of historians. But beyond Obama the United States does not have credibility in establishing leaders in the Middle East. It doesn’t matter if the president is a Democrat or a Republican. American Foreign policy usually sucks. Despite the right wing love affair, it sucked under Reagan. Yes. It sucked under Reagan.

We have destabilized the Middle East. We did that long before Iraq. We did that in the 1950’s. We spent decades supporting Israel without question. We supported coups in Iran. We bombed Iraq for oil prices. A decade later we invaded Iraq because someone attacked us from Afghanistan. We invaded Afghanistan. We supported the Arab Spring in Libya and Egypt. Which of these has worked out? For that matter it doesn’t work out for Russia either.

We created an atmosphere for ISIS. Russia created an atmosphere for the Taliban. It seems the only solution is to mess up a country together. That’ll be new.

Yeah, this is gonna work out.

I love the movie Airplane. Yeah, you kinda see the punchline coming. I wonder if younger people won’t understand the reference.