Saturday, February 14, 2004

Vapid Corporatist-Media Shakedown Artists Wanted 

Drawing the line at the company store.

[Begin quoted material]

Save the Editorial Cartoonists! When editors and publishers opt for less controversial syndicated work, they do their readers -- and democracy -- a disservice.

By Chris Lamb
(February 13, 2004) -- John Sherffius, the editorial cartoonist of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, recently resigned after a series of disagreements with the newspaper's editor over his criticism of President George W. Bush and the Republican Party. In one of his last cartoons for the paper, Sherffius drew a Republican elephant riding a pig representing pork-barrel projects. The caption line read: "The party of fiscal discipline."

When the deputy editorial page editor asked Sherffius why he didn't include a Democratic donkey in the drawing, Sherffius replied that, according to newspaper accounts, Republican projects were receiving most of the money. The explanation satisfied the deputy editorial page editor but not the newspaper's editor, Ellen Soeteber, who told him he should either learn to take more direction or look for work elsewhere, The New York Times reported Jan. 12.


Newspaper editors need to quit acting like government bureaucrats and corporate accountants. If they begin acting like guardians of the public trust, as they're intended to do, they may find that their editorial pages give their readers something to look forward to in the morning. They can do this by hiring editorial cartoonists. [end quoted material]

continue reading...

Flashback: Goosestep Patriotism...
"There is immense pressure [from] readers and advertisers to toe the patriotic line as they define it," said Steve Benson, widely considered one of America's leading political cartoonists, who draws for The Arizona Republic and who syndicates his work. "I have had editors who have pulled my syndicated cartoons because readers have marched to their offices and demanded retractions. I have had death threats, efforts to silence me, people who have compared me to traitors."
~ [Follow the Patriotic Line ]


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