Hot Air Espionage

I drew a cartoon for CNN on the Chinese spy balloon which will run tomorrow (Sunday). I usually wait until after the CNN cartoon is published before I hit the same subject, but this spy balloon business is too much fun.

After I finished drawing CNN’s cartoon yesterday afternoon, I thought of another idea I liked that I intended to draw today, but after traveling by bus from Indianapolis to Kokomo, Indiana (please…I can’t take any more Beach Boys references), I got this idea right as I sat down at Starbucks.

I spent all day Thursday traveling. During one of my many many many layovers, I received a comment from my friend, fellow cartoonist, and pride of Green Bay, Joe Heller, who asked if I had seen any Chinese balloons while traveling. I was like, “What the Hell are you talking about?”. I had been in the air all day and hadn’t been able to keep up with the news, which of course is when China decides to send a balloon to spy on our country. Watching TV in my hotel room with very bad WiFi Thursday night, I saw what all the fuss was about…and it’s all the news was about on Friday too.

So what’s the deal with this balloon? Why would China be so brazen to float a spy balloon over the United States? They had to know we’d see it. We look up in this country. China said it’s an oops, but we know they’re lying. And then they sent another to float over Latin America. Why are they spying on Belize?

Laurent Boebert tweeted that Donald Trump wouldn’t have let this spy balloon invade our airspace. She then tweeted, “Joe Biden has just given the “okay” for Chinese spy balloons to fly all over our nation.” It’s tweets like this why #LaurenBoebertIsSoDumb has been trending for over a year. You would think from her tweets that we wouldn’t be able to look up without seeing a Chinese spy balloon.

Here’s the thing, kids: Gravity exists even if you don’t believe in it. If you shoot a balloon down, it falls to the ground. There are things on the ground, like people. Wanting to shoot it down over land is a seriously stupid idea and thank God nobody would ever put someone like Lauren Boebert in a position of responsibility… which says a lot about her voters who sent her to Congress and Kevin McCarthy who put this moron on the House Oversight Committee.

If Donald Trump was president (sic), the first thing he’d ask about shooting down a spy balloon would be, “How will this affect me financially?” He might also ask, “Will this hurt the over dozen patents China gave Ivanka?” He’d probably also ask, “Balloons? Why didn’t I get a balloon? Isn’t every day all about me? And where’s my cake?” He’d definitely ask, “Before we shoot it down, it’s not from Russia, is it?” I’m sure after it was shot down he’d boast that he shot it down while Obama never shot down a Chinese spy balloon. And if China sent a balloon while Trump was president, he’d probably say it was a gift for the cake he gave Xi Jinping at Mar-a-Lago.

Ya see, Lauren Boebert, Russia wouldn’t DARE fly a spy balloon over American air space if Donald Trump was president. They wouldn’t have to. They’d just have to visit the Oval Office where Trump wouldn’t allow the press to watch, and where Trump will gladly give them classified information, even if it came from an ally.

So I don’t want to hear this shit about President Biden being weak and Trump being a strong president (sic) who was oh-so patriotic. Donald Trump was a goon for Russia. He was a useful idiot. Donald Trump said he trusted Putin more than American intelligence, which he recently reiterated. Donald Trump said Putin was a stronger leader than President Obama. Donald Trump repeated Putin’s talking points. Donald Trump said Putin was a genius for invading Ukraine. Donald Trump sent white nationalist terrorists to attack the Capitol in order to install him as an unelected dictator. Donald Trump is a domestic threat to this nation.

I think one thing the spy balloon tells us is that China’s technology isn’t as advanced as we thought it was. While we’re upset about the balloon invading our airspace, our satellites do this daily to China and other nations.

I don’t believe our government is going to allow this balloon to escape. They’ll either shoot it down after it passes over the east coast and is above open water. Or better yet, they’ll capture it.

The Chinese spy balloon won’t be a threat to this nation for long. Unfortunately, we’ll still have the hot air of the Russian spy balloon for a long time.

Creative note: As I stated above, this cartoon was drawn in a Kokomo Starbucks.

Signed prints: The signed prints are just $40.00 each. Every cartoon on this site is available. You can pay through PayPal. If you don’t like PayPal, you can snail mail it to Clay Jones, P.O. Box 3721, Fredericksburg, VA 22402. I can mail the prints directly to you or if you’re purchasing as a gift, directly to the person you’re gifting.

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Watch me draw:



  1. That balloon is flying at an altitude of about 66,000 feet, according to a U.S. official.

    Most US military aircraft can exceed 50,000 feet, if they really really try the limits are classified & even though the balloon is “as large as three London’s buses” by some estimates, and moving slowly it’s still an incredibly difficult target to try and shoot down.

    For reference most commercial jetliners cruise somewhere between 30,000 and 45,000 feet above mean sea level.

    There are Google Earth satellite photographs of most of the region it’s going to pass over- our missile silos locations have been known for over 65 years.

    This is likely a Propaganda move by China in retaliation for the announcement that the US is expanding its bases in the Philippines, an area of the China claims under their control.

    Your fear & panic is exactly the sort of reaction they want to achieve.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Your Chinese balloon cartoon has given a rebirth to the “diaper Donnie” balloon. I read somewhere the spy balloon has a rudder, so is it being guided? Probably. If flew over missile sites in Montana and over Sedalia Missouri (home of Whiteman Air Force base and stealth bombers).
    Great cartoon Clay.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Whatever happened to the ‘diaper Donnie’ balloon anyway? Was it put into storage, to be brought out when he runs again? Put on display in the Smithsonian? Anyone know?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    Spies, spies, spies everywhere!! … “So what’s the deal with this balloon? Why would China be so brazen to float a spy balloon over the United States? They had to know we’d see it. We look up in this country. China said it’s an oops, but we know they’re lying. And then they sent another to float over Latin America. Why are they spying on Belize?”


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