Does Obama ever do anything right? Not often, but sure. And when he does, I shut up about it. Cartoonists and columnists who promote government policy are an embarrassment.
But that’s what “liberal” media outlets want in the age of Obama.
I can’t prove it in every case. (That’s how blackballing works.) The Nation and Mother Jones and Harper’s, liberal magazines that gave me freelance work under Clinton and Bush, now ignore my queries. Even when I offered them first-person, unembedded war reporting from Afghanistan. Hey, maybe they’re too busy to answer email or voicemail. You never know.
Other censors are brazen.
There’s been a push among political cartoonists to get our work into the big editorial blogs and online magazines that seem poised to displace traditional print political magazines like The Progressive. In the past, editorial rejections had numerous causes: low budgets, lack of space, an editor who simply preferred another creator’s work over yours.
Now there’ s a new cause for refusal: Too tough on the president.
I’ve heard that from enough “liberal” websites and print publications to consider it a significant trend.
A sample of recent rejections, each from editors at different left-of-center media outlets:
• “I am familiar with and enjoy your cartoons. However the readers of our site would not be comfortable with your (admittedly on point) criticism of Obama.”
• “Don’t be such a hater on O and we could use your stuff. Can’t you focus more on the GOP?”
• “Our first African-American president deserves a chance to clean up Bush’s mess without being attacked by us.”
I have many more like that.
What’s weird is that these cultish attitudes come from editors and publishers whose politics line up neatly with mine. They oppose the bailouts. They want us out of Afghanistan and Iraq. They disapprove of Obama’s new war against Libya. They want Obama to renounce torture and Guantánamo.
Obama is the one they ought to be blackballing. He has been a terrible disappointment to the American left. He has forsaken liberals at every turn. Yet they continue to stand by him. Which means that, in effect, they are not liberals at all. They are militant Democrats. They are Obamabots.Sorry to again note the obvious but Ava and C.I. have long covered this terrain. Unlike Ted Rall, they didn't need to awaken because they were never asleep.
They've covered the cult-like behavior, they've stood up to it. They did so in early 2008 and continued all the way through. Rall can't make that claim.
When he notes the following: "Does Obama ever do anything right? Not often, but sure. And when he does, I shut up about it. Cartoonists and columnists who promote government policy are an embarrassment.," I'm left remembering all of Ava and C.I.'s calling out of Saturday Night Like the most recent one.
"TV: The show that keeps getting worse" (Ava and C.I., The Third Estate Sunday Review):
Despite being a public figure for many years now, Barack's never gotten the Saturday Night Live treatment. It's why past SNL alumni consider the last two years the worst of Saturday Night Live. Seth & company have pulled the punches, have repeatedly refused to take on the powerful and turned the show that was the class clown into the teacher's pet.
I'm glad Ted Rall's speaking out. I hope it encourages others to do the same. But it's a shame that we're almost at the half-way point of the year and Ted feels he has to explain (repeatedly) why he doesn't care for Barack.
"Iraq snapshot" (The Common Ills):