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Barrie Antoinette: “Let Them Eat Catfood…”

7:10 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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  • “Life Among the Nobililty: The Swing” by Gregonard…

Well, Barrie Antoinette–excuse me, President Barry Obama, delivered his proposal for a budget and yes, indeed-y, there was the much hated-by-the-constituency-but-loved-by-Wall-Street “chained CPI”. According to one writer, Barry has called the Republican bluff–they have said they will brook no tax increases unless something is done about “entitlements”–you know, the money you’re entitled to because, well, you GAVE it to the Fed to invest throughout your working career! Well, the Prez has proposed chained CPI–the cost of living mal-adjustment that assumes that if you can’t afford steak, you’ll buy chicken and everything is still jake. Or if you can’t afford Chicken of the Sea, you’ll buy canned skipjack mackerel. And if you can’t afford canned mackerel, you’ll just go to Friskies.

The theory is that the Republicans will be so scared of losing their seats that they will do anything to avoid agreeing to this proposal. Except for one thing–who’s REALLY gonna get the blame for this? Why, the guy who proposed it, of course. President Obama. You know, the guy who DOESN’T HAVE TO RUN FOR ELECTION AGAIN?

Why all this “save Social Security” nonsense when it is solvent for the next 30 years? Why all this “entitlement reform” bullshit when Social Security has nothing to do with the budget? For that, we have to go back eight years (and actually more) to when President BUSH proposed “privatizing Social Security.” That’s right, this one has a long history–and the reason for privatizing SS was? So the money boys, the banks, the oligarchy, the plutocracy, could get their hands on that money and drain it from our senior citizens faster than any drug addict by stealing your Grandma’s Social Security check.

But wait–how does the chained CPI do THAT? Remember back then–the seniors, the AARP, everybody and their brother decided that the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) was good enough to keep them going so please do not do us the favor of letting us make bad investments, please. So the money boys–whom Barack Obama is as beholden to as any Republican, any blue dog Democrat, hell, almost every “progressive” Democrat as well–said to themselves, “If the COLA is good enough, then let’s screw the COLA. Then they’ll be clamoring to let us invest the money for them.”

And that, kiddies, is how the sky turned blue. So remember, when Grandma, when Ma and Pa, when YOU start having to eat catfood, it wasn’t just Congress, it wasn’t just Obama…

It was the banks, too big to fail, too big to jail, who wanted your money.

“Allons enfants de la Patrie, le jour de gloire est arrivé!”

Greg Uchrin is a satirist, cartoonist and professional cynic in Alexandria VA. This diary is cross-posted to his blog Intravenous Caffeine, the post-Bush era successor to HAIL DUBYUS.

Drone Wars Theme Song–The Road to Dystopia!

7:13 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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  • With apologies to Bob and Bing…
  • Okay, guys, time to prove just HOW OLD I AM again:

    THE ROAD TO DYSTOPIA
    To the tune of “The Road to Morocco”. Dystopia is pronounced Dis-TOPE-ya for the purposes of the song.
    For those of you who are too young to have ever heard it, watch this Youtube video to get the tune:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_w3UG6C_Mo

    We’re off on the Road to Dystopia!
    Pushbuttons do not hurt our spines!
    Where they’re goin’, where we’re goin’, how can we be sure?
    Just keep on believing that our motives aren’t impure!

    We’re off on the Road to Dystopia!
    Watch out! There’s no end to the line!
    I hear our target’s where they do the dance of the seven veils,
    They won’t be doing it too long with rockets on their tails!

    We certainly do get around!
    Like endless wars in Orwell,
    We’re Dystopia Bound!

    We’re off on the Road to Dystopia!
    Look out! Well, clear the way, ‘cuz HERE WE COME!
    As long as they’re shot over there, we haven’t any cares!
    We hope our next-door neighbors don’t say five-fold daily prayers!

    We’re off on the Road to Dystopia!
    Thinking just makes us go numb!
    They told us they would never shoot them off on US soil.
    Our government would never sell us second-rate SNAKE OIL!

    We certainly do get around!
    Like a Jimmy Cameron movie starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, we’re Dystopia Bound.
    Or a comic book by Alan Moore that’s made into a superbudget movie that gets everybody wearing Guy Fawkes masks,
    WE’RE DYSTOPIA BOUND!

    No cartoon next Monday because *drumroll* this coming weekend I will be in Artist Alley at Katsucon 19, at the Gaylord in National Harbor, MD, so if you’re there, stop by and say hi–and perhaps buy a signed print or two. For those of you who CAN’T make it, go over to my Facebook fanpage and click on the LIKE button to get updates on this blog and on my other art that’s available at the conventions.

    See you then. Intravenous Caffeine will be back in two weeks.

    YESYESYES–I admit it–I was lipsyncing!!!
    __________
    Greg Uchrin is a satirist, cartoonist and professional cynic in Alexandria VA. This diary is cross-posted to his blog Intravenous Caffeine, the post-Bush era successor to HAIL DUBYUS.

    If the Africans Brought to America Had Been Given Guns…

    7:23 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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    • You should see the family going to church on Sunday…

    Congratulations President Obama on the start of your second term. The first piece of advice I will give you for you to ignore is: Don’t negotiate with terrorists–stand your ground on the debt ceiling!

    I pretty much ignored the Newton massacre before the end of last year–although I had plenty of ideas that my better half pronounced, “TOO SOON!” Fortunately, plenty of people–most of whom have guns–have kept the story alive–by their IDIOCY! It took several days before the NRA had gotten its collective head out of its nether orifice far enough to respond. The answer to gun violence in schools? MORE GUNS! Set up armed guards in every school building and school yard. I’m surprised David Keene didn’t add issuing kevlar vests to every student and teacher–perhaps because in Newton since the killer shot almost everyone execution style. But it’s definitely a thought.

    It has been suggested before that teachers and principals be issued sidearms to keep the peace at the frontier–AKA nursery, grade, middle and high school. There’s some justification to this with kids being given handguns to come to class for safety. After all, the teachers should be allowed to return fire. You might argue that it would take far too long and cost far too much to train teachers how to handle a shootin’ iron. Nonsense, just sit them down for one of the AMC John Wayne/Clint Eastwood marathons and they’ll be ready! At least as ready as the three gun experts who managed to shoot themselves and a few other people by accident at gun shows this past weekend!

    Larry Ward, founder of Gun Appreciation Day, held on the 19th, has persuasively argued that holding it just before Martin Luther King Jr. Day is something that Dr. King would have approved, if he hadn’t been assassinated. After all, if the African immigrants to America had been given the right to bear arms, there might not have been slavery. I’m sure the labor entrepeneurs who brought them over would have been happy to provide them with musket, balls and powder. And I do mean balls.

    Now let me see. Armed guards are needed in schools. Guns are allowed in several state legislatures, but they already have armed guards. Several states allow guns in saloons–we’ll need armed guards there–and churches too. My question is, “Who’s going to pay for all these armed guards?” I’ve asked my local tea partiers who loudly said, “Not ME! You’d have to raise taxes to pay all those armed guards!” Well, there’s just one solution, which will appeal to the business owning crowd, I’m sure. Privatize the police forces! It only makes sense–people who don’t have any property don’t need it protected! Open up police services to be bought by the lowest bidder and allow private citizens to pay a yearly fee for police protection.

    Now we don’t want to completely take protection away from people who can’t afford a yearly contract. They can obtain police services on a per incident basis at a modest rate. All major credit cards and Paypal accepted. Yessirree Bob! I’m sure that will be the most equitable solution. Just what the Founding Fathers envisioned!

    Don’t forget to pack heat with lunch, dearees!

    Greg Uchrin is a satirist, cartoonist and professional cynic in Alexandria VA. This diary is cross-posted to his blog Intravenous Caffeine, the post-Bush era successor to HAIL DUBYUS.

    The REAL War on Christmas

    7:50 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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    If you think this doesn’t make any sense, join the club…

    Bill O’Reilly and the Faux News crowd are in the middle of their annual War On The War Against Christmas, dredging up every incident of Happy Holiday-ism they can find in an effort to show how anti-Christmas America has become. Bill also argued that Christianity isn’t a religion, but a philosophy. Not to say that a good Catholic boy like O’Reilly has a fundamental misunderstanding of either Christmas or Christianity, let’s take his statements at face value for a moment.

    As the Spirit of Christmas Present says to Scrooge (in the Alastair Sim movie but not the book), “We Spirits of Christmas do not live but one day a year, we live the entire 365.” And what is that “spirit of Christmas”? Buying gifts? Setting up Nativity scenes? Randy office parties? Santa Claus? No, the true Christmas spirit is “Peace on earth, good will towards men.” It means not going to war unless you really have to. It means giving to those less fortunate. It means going the extra mile for your fellow man. Not just in December, but all January through November as well. Above all, it means ANYTHING but paying attention to Ayn Rand.

    That’s the Christian philosophy in a nutshell, Bill. And your cohorts, the Republicans in the Senate, showed just how much true Christmas spirit they had when they turned down the UN treaty on the disabled. Never mind that John McCain endorsed it, George H. W. Bush endorsed it, Bob Dole was wheeled in from his deathbed (as Jon Stewart put it) to endorse it. Never mind that it was based on OUR OWN LAWS. The Republican bloc but a handful voted it down because it raised serious concerns about our sovereignty (all treaties do–that’s part of the reason we have them), it was a socialist plot from the hated UN, it was an attack on home schooling according to Paul Ryan, the idiot we were spared from having as Vice President a few weeks ago. But above all, because Barack Obama wanted it.

    Nice going, guys–maybe you’d like a chance to repeal our own disability laws now. After all, building ramps might cut into corporate profits.

    Oh. And Merry Christmas.

    Happy Hanukah to all our Jewish friends (as they say on the news). We will be taking our winter hiatus after our annual HOLIDAY card next week.

    Greg Uchrin is a satirist, cartoonist and professional cynic in Alexandria VA. This diary is cross-posted to his blog Intravenous Caffeine, the post-Bush era successor to HAIL DUBYUS.


    Triumph of the 47%

    6:59 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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    • “Nothing is classier than good sportsmanship, Mitt.”–The 47%

    Well, a lot has happened in the last two weeks. We had an election. It did not turn out to be the squeaker that all the pundits and newsies hoped it would be. It did not turn out to be the rout that FoxNews, Newsmax, and the Romney campaign thought it would be.

    Instead, it turned out to be a decisive victory for the President and for the 47% that the Baseball Glove so derided. Quite frankly, I still have no idea how so many people are actually fooled by GOP empty promises and failed policies, but Obama only got 52% of the vote. But I ain’t kicking.

    Mittford still is. Showing sportsmanship, good sense, and a sense of fair play, he’s been mouthing off about how Obama won because of “gifts” he gave to poor people, students, old farts, immigrants–you know, all those people who just “don’t count”. Class act, Willard! President Obama is going to pardon a turkey this week. But it’s YOU who really needs it.

    And last weekend was AnimeUSA. I had a great time in Artists Alley, meeting all the fans and cosplayers. The two panels I gave on Planning Your Manga and Neo-Traditional Inking went splendidly–although I seem to have forgotten my collection of pens and brush pens, so if anyone came across them, please contact me at gregoriusu01 AT gmail.com. I’ll be highly grateful. I’d like to give shoutouts to all the staff at AUSA, my fellow artists and all the cosplayers I photographed (and some I didn’t) whose pictures I’ve uploaded to my flickr account, far too many to mention (my photo, cosplaying as a well-fed but sleek seal is here). But I would like to give one to Kevin and Peter of A KAWAII BOUTIQUE, who had a great weekend doing their first Artists Alley–Kevin is a friend from DeviantArt and helped me last year at Katsucon to learn the ropes and also give me a break to get to the formal ball at that convention and this one. THX guys, glad I could help you get started on a great venture.

    Now, Obama, it’s time to have your feet held to the fire. BWAHAHA!

    Greg Uchrin is a satirist, cartoonist and professional cynic in Alexandria VA. This diary is cross-posted to his blog Intravenous Caffeine, the post-Bush era successor to HAIL DUBYUS.

    Vote Early, Vote Often, but VOTE!

    7:06 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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    • Need I say WHICH legislatures?

    It’s going to be a tougher election than it should be. Tough voter ID laws have been enacted in far too many states specifically designed to make it tough for “brown” people, poor people and college students to vote. Two important states, Ohio and Florida, have precipitously cut back their early voting hours. And the United States is still filled with idiots who think Barack Obama is an atheist Muslim born in Kenya.

    Mitt Romney SHOULD lose. After all, his entire plan for the country is to bankrupt it and all citizens with incomes less than a million a year and then sell it off to China. That’s his M.O. You’d think people would have caught on to it. Certainly not the Fox News-watching crowd–you know, the ones who didn’t know how big Hurricane Sandy had gotten and when they DID hear, thought: “Good–it’s time for them America-hating New Yorkers to suffer like the rest of us.”

    Chris Christie got thrown under the bus for actually deigning to appear with President Obama as they toured the devastation in New Jersey. The GOP better hope the bus doesn’t overturn–Christie is a big bump in the road.

    So on Tuesday, as one commentator said, America gets the choice of turning back the clock–by fifty years. Let’s hope that we as a nation are not THAT INSANE. You liberals thinking you won’t vote because you are mad at Obama for not closing Gitmo, not getting universal health and waging war by remote control–think of the alternative. Now go out and vote.

    THIS WEEK, yours truly will be in the Artists Alley at ANIMEUSA in Washington DC. Anyone who is an animefan and is going to the con, please drop by my table! I’ll also be giving panels on inking your comics and how to plan your manga. And, in connection with this, I inaugurate my new Facebook Fanpage. LIKE it and get news about my other artworks as they are produced and get progress reports on my graphic novel HANAKO-SAN, now being storyboarded.

    Have a good week and VOTE. See you soon.

    Please to remember the 5th of November, gunpowder treason and plot,
    I see no reason why gunpowder treason ever should be forgot…

    A penny for the old Guy!

    Greg Uchrin is a satirist, cartoonist and professional cynic in Alexandria VA. This diary is cross-posted to his blog Intravenous Caffeine, the post-Bush era successor to HAIL DUBYUS.

    You Have To Hit These Semantic Points JUST Right!

    5:55 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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    • Where’d he get that mallet from?

    Well, Barry was on point the other night. He not only went toe to toe with Mitt, but he managed to call one of his remarks “offensive” and look at one point like he was going to slap Willard silly. Americans are ALWAYS impressed by that kind of stuff. He got in the point about the 47% Romney doesn’t care about at the very END of the debate when Romney couldn’t make a comeback, AND he scored the rhetorical point of the evening.

    Now, all the critics have pointed out that Obama’s score was a semantic point. Yes, Willard was right that it took us two weeks to determine if the Benghazi incident was a terrorist plot and this was because we got caught with our pants down. With all the cost-cutting, we didn’t have the security in an area where our diplomats were well-liked. Or the intelligence. And President Obama DID call the incident an “act of terrorism” while speaking in broad generalities in the Rose Garden the next day.

    But let’s look at this a bit closer. What was Mitt comparing it to? Well, the most likely event that he was comparing it to was that horrible incident some 11 years ago when a bunch of terrorists flew some airplanes into some really big office buildings–that’s right, “9-11″. And we knew then, moments after it occurred, that not only was it an act of terrorism, but we knew WHO was responsible. And why did we know this?

    Because Bush and Company had been asleep at the wheel. Intelligence had been advising them since day one of the administration that al-Qaeda and Bin Laden were planning something big, something within the borders of the United States, something that involved stealing jet planes, and the official response was, “Yeah, yeah, you covered your ass–now let’s get on to more important stuff like cutting taxes.”

    How many times has something rotten happened that you snapped your fingers and said, “Man, I KNEW THAT was going to happen.” And why did you know? Because you’d screwed up and not taken it into account. So sometimes, speed in declaring something a terrorist act is NOT a very good thing–like when it’s an an indication of stupid complacency. So I’m more than willing to let Barry score on this one. Mitt deserved the mallet from Hammerspace.

    What is Hammerspace? Glad you asked–it is the critical name for that extra-dimensional portal out of which a cartoon character grabs a giant mallet to smack down his opponent. I think we can thank Tex Avery for the discovery of the portal as a cartoon device, usually accompanied by a boi-oi-oing sound effect as the mallet strikes and loud music from Carl Stallings, but the name for it is much more recent and too obscure for the wiki to say who first used the term. Anyway, Mitt, welcome to Hammerspace–when you walk into one, you deserve it.

    Now let’s see what happens in the next one.

    And another sad event. Our condolences to the family of George McGovern, another lion who acted on what he stood for. The last generation of politicians who weren’t all completely beholden to financial interests is fast fading into memory.

    Greg Uchrin is a satirist, cartoonist and professional cynic in Alexandria VA. This diary is cross-posted to his blog Intravenous Caffeine, the post-Bush era successor to HAIL DUBYUS.

    Martha Raddatz Forces Paul Ryan into a “Bela Lugosi Moment”

    5:25 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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  • Paul Ryan does his impression of Dracula being faced down with a crucifix.
  • Everyone was talking last week about the Thursday night smackdown of Paul Ryan … by Martha Raddatz! About this across the board 20% tax cut … do you have the specifics? Do you have the math? Do you even know what you’re doing? (Well, not exactly the last one, but pretty close).

    As Ryan averted his eyes and shielded himself from the glare of intense scrutiny with a more horrified scowl than Dracula being faced with a crucifix, Martha boldly advanced with her Holy Microphone! No No NO! I’m going to try to weasel around with some nonsense about Republicans reaching out for a bi-partisan solution (like THAT’S ever happened in the last 12 years). So Martha delivered the final blow: “Yeah–NO specifics!” BOOM! Score one for an objective TV journalist.

    Joe Biden loved it so much, he laughed through the entire debate. Actually, Joltin’ Joe got enough solid wood on the ball to knock several so far out of the park–and Ryan along with it–that Andy Borowitz quipped that the Democrats now want Biden to take over for Barry in all the rest of the debates. Barry’s response was that he realized he gave a less than stellar performance the first time, and THIS time, he was actually going to prepare for the debate. Good move, Mr. President!

    The Press–you know, the one with the so-called liberal bias–on the other hand, gave bad marks to Joe for laughing and eye-rolling at every one of Ryan’s glossing over of the facts and plain old mendacity. The same press that fell over itself four years ago to praise Sarah Palin’s winken-blinken-and-nod performance–you know, someone SHOULD have criticized her for making fun of the handicapped like that–calling it “fresh and spunky”. I guess the difference between “fresh and spunky” and “angry old man” is about 30 years. This from a press that seems to think “Moon–Green Cheese? Blue Cheese–an alternate viewpoint!” is a solid debate topic.

    Anyway, now the ball is back in the big boy’s court. Let’s hope that President Obama has learned a lesson about not misunderestimating his opponent. Just because he’s a robot with a pretty hair-do for a brain doesn’t mean he can’t pack a wallop in a medium where you win by LOOKING GOOD. And that’s the way it is.

    A sad note this weekend. Arlen Specter, the last Republican with a conscience, passed away after a long battle with cancer. If you want to talk about bi-partisanship, he was one of the last Republicans to believe in it. So much so that his party forced him to seek re-election as a Democrat. I didn’t always like his votes, but I had respect for the man. He–and his kind of politician–will be missed.

    And if you’re wondering about my Dracula references–Hallowe’en IS on the way and my wife got me the Universal Horror Blu-Ray Collection for my birthday. Bela Lugosi is stunning in HD!

    And Mitt Romney wins the Piled Higher and Deeper Award

    6:01 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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  • He won the Golden Shovel all four years of high school
  • By now, everyone has already reviewed and reviewed the first debate ad nauseam. The insta-pundits, naturally, awarded the “win” to Mitt Romney because he looked so good while Obama looked like he was sleepwalking. Then the fact checkers weighed in to reveal that the only factual statement that Mitt Romney made was that he was Mitt Romney.

    The Daily Kos made the amazing discovery that there is actually a name for the debating technique Mitt used. It’s called the Gish Gallop.

    The Urban Dictionary provides this definition for the Gallop…

    “Named for the debate tactic created by creationist shill Duane Gish, a Gish Gallop involves spewing so much bullshit in such a short span on that your opponent can’t address let alone counter all of it. To make matters worse a Gish Gallop will often have one or more ‘talking points’ that has a tiny core of truth to it, making the person rebutting it spend even more time debunking it in order to explain that, yes, it’s not totally false but the Galloper is distorting/misusing/misstating the actual situation. A true Gish Gallop generally has two traits.

    “1) The factual and logical content of the Gish Gallop is pure bullshit and anybody knowledgeable and informed on the subject would recognize it as such almost instantly. That is, the Gish Gallop is designed to appeal to and deceive precisely those sorts of people who are most in need of honest factual education.

    “2) The points are all ones that the Galloper either knows, or damn well should know, are totally bullshit. With the slimier users of the Gish Gallop, like Gish himself, its a near certainty that the points are chosen not just because the Galloper knows that they’re bullshit, but because the Galloper is deliberately trying to shovel as much bullshit into as small a space as possible in order to overwhelm his opponent with sheer volume and bamboozle any audience members with a facade of scholarly acumen and factual knowledge.”

    Or as we used to say in high school debate circles, if you can’t convince them with the facts (because you don’t have any), baffle them with bullshit. Ahh, how many times I personally was awarded the Golden Shovel–that gold-spray-painted trophy emblazoned with the words: PILED HIGHER AND DEEPER.

    Now this does not excuse the President from his piss-poor performance. He seemed to be in a different room where someone was actually making points that Romney wasn’t even talking about. Al Gore opined that the problem was the altitude in Denver. But perhaps it was the altitude of Obama’s discourse. He simply couldn’t BELIEVE that so much bull was being thrown in his direction so instead he took the high road…only it went to a different city.

    Paul Ryan, of course, did not want to be debating Joe Biden, because all Paul Ryan can do is vomit numbers that don’t mean anything, whereas Joe, bless his pointy little head, actually knows a thing or two about policy. And Joe is a fighter. But then next week, we will be subjected to another Obama-Romney duel. You can bet Romney will lie his ass off in this next one too–let’s hope Barry has the sense to say that he’s the President of 100% of the people, not the 47% Romney claimed.

    But enough of that. A MORE IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT. Friday, October 12 is MY BIRTHDAY. Yes, I will be too old to want to say what my age is. But being as so many people in my life have shared this birthday with me, my dad, my uncle Gene, a former girlfriend, and several others, I want to WISH a HAPPY BIRTHDAY to all COLUMBUS DAY-ERS! We used to only get a day off for the birthday some of the time but now we get a day off for it all the time–and 3 out of 7 years on the right day too! So HAPPY BIRTHDAY my fellow October 12-ers.

    I’m Back (Ouch Ouch Ouch) Sort Of

    8:25 am in Uncategorized by GregoriusU

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  • MAGIC!
  • I’m back again–more or less. At least my front is–my actual back has been on the verge of going out all weekend. I know that most people with bad backs get it in the lumbars so they can’t bend–MY back goes out in the thoracic vertebrae–one little spot where no matter how hard you twist or stretch, you can’t QUITE get it back in place. And like I said–on the verge. Not bad enough to hie me to the doctor, but not good enough to sit upright for long periods without being AWARE that this bone will soon be out of joint.

    ANYHOW. We’re back for the final four weeks of this hoohah where the incumbent, Barry Obama, has been doing a fairly competent job piloting the boat despite half of Congress rowing the wrong way–that is, any way that is opposite to the way he’s pointing, even if that was the way they had pointed before. Chatsworth Osborne Junior, otherwise known as Mitt Romney, is running against him, simply because as the person with the most money in this high school, he thinks he ought to be student council president. And while we were on hiatus, he chose Paul Ryan, tax wonk who cannot add or subtract, to be the brains of the outfit.

    Paul was asked to explain Mitt’s tax plan, which has been described previously as exactly like Paul’s but nothing like it. He responded this weekend that it was too complicated to explain, leading us to confirm that like most things in this world, Republicans expect the world to run on magic and wishful thinking. Hell, even HOGWART’s expects you to put a LITTLE effort into your spells (but of course, Hogwart’s would lose federal funding under a Republican administration since it is magickal and thus a creature of the anti-Christ.)

    In the meantime, Intervention Con was last weekend and a great time was had by all. I premiered the second volume of my BLEACH parody, BLECCH PART DUH, to great fanfare and the parties were primo! Pictures from the con can be found in my Flickr album.