Jules Ffeiffer on Nixon and Trump

The great cartoonist, whose is now 91 and whose wordy cartoons were less gag-driven but more mordant, was a must-read during the Nixon era. In a recent interview, he shows that he has not lost his bite and says that Donald Trump has dispensed with the illusions that Americans have about themselves and revealed what many of them are really like.

“The president affected much more than the politics of the country,” Feiffer says. “And you see it with Trump. He created a social style of what was acceptable and not acceptable in all forms, not just political, but social, interpersonal behavior. The way we react to one another, whether we’re kind or the way we’re paranoid or suspicious. Somehow it’s all centered in the White House and spreads out.”

As for the current president, “He’s bringing us back the real America. That’s it. Making America great again is making America openly bigoted again. You had to hide the bigotry during the liberal years. Now we don’t have to hide it. And that’s what you see in the Trump rallies. That’s what you see with his crowds… He’s licensing his followers to behave as badly as they once fantasized but didn’t dare. And he’s saying, ‘Let’s stop fucking around, this is who we always were.'”

Feiffer recalls what he considered the callous response of many Americans to the news of the My Lai massacre-comparable to the widespread acceptance today of the forced separation of families at the Southern border. It’s not due to any lack of information, as Feiffer told Studs Terkel in 1974. It’s just “the process of denial, over and over again.”

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Samantha Bee on the impeachment trial

If one wanted evidence of how degraded the US political system has become, look no further than the current impeachment process against Donald Trump. Supposedly a process where possible wrongdoing by a president that might require removal from office comes under careful scrutiny, it retains all the formal trappings that hide a hollow core, now a cynical charade where the Republican party has taken a determined ‘See no evil, hear no evil” approach, indeed extending it to “See nothing, hear nothing” approach by refusing to allow any witnesses or new information or testimony, and the accused Trump even boasting that he refuses to release the information that he has.

It is a symptom of a degenerate system, one whose foundations are tottering because of the willful ignoring of basic democratic norms.

Samantha Bee walks us through the opening day.

Royal family feud

I have expressed many times my distaste for the British royal family, or for royalty anywhere in the world for that matter, seeing them as utter parasites who should go out and get jobs. I am puzzled by the fascination that people seem to have about the minutiae of their lives and studiously avoid such stories. But recently I have been inundated with headlines about some split that seems to be happening and finally my desire to be informed about popular culture won out and I caved in to listen to Trevor Noah explain what is going on.

Larry David on Bernie Sanders

The irascible Larry David who plays the irascible Larry David on the sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm also has a recurring guest role playing an irascible Bernie Sanders on Saturday Night Live. Appearing on Stephen Colbert’s show, he talked about what a Sanders presidency would mean for him. Colbert told him that Sanders would be coming on his show the next night and asked him if he had any message he wanted to give him.

“I would say, I would beg him to drop out so I don’t have to keep flying in from Los Angeles to do SNL,” David answered. “I thought when he had the heart attack that would be it, I wouldn’t have to fly in from Los Angeles. But, you know, he’s indestructible. Nothing stops this man!”

“If he wins, do you know what that’s going to do to my life?” he added. “Do you have any idea? I mean, it will be great for the country—great for the country. Terrible for me.”

Jonathan Pie interviews Prince Andrew

Well, not really. The British royal family would not let faux journalist Pie within a mile of them. What he does is interview a fictitious member of the British royal family (the ‘Duke of Chesterton’) who bears a resemblance to Andrew about his friendship with a known pedophile that involved sexual acts with underage people. It is of course a parody of the disastrous interview that Andrew gave to the BBC about his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein and the charge made by Virginia Giuffre that she was forced to have sex with him.

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