Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Reagan the Lifeguard

I drew this a few years ago. You hear Republicans talking about individualism and the evils of government, but they seldom mention all the government props and support they get in the business community, the roads they use, the educated workforce they couldn't do without, the legal protections of their patents and trade agreements. The quote they like to trot out is this one from Reagan, about the scariest words in the world being "I'm from the government and I'm here to help." I don't suppose many people mind the government rescuing them from hurricanes or floods or fire. Do you think of firemen as socialists? I don't. But they're not profiteers either, and I'm glad of that. They don't ask for payment before they help you. Reagan himself was a government employee when he worked as a lifeguard. He didn't look at every near-drowning as a business opportunity. Helping can be a job, but it's also a citizen's duty, a neighbor's duty, and an obligation we all share in common through our democratic institutions. One of the presidential candidates wants to cut FEMA emergency preparedness by half. Can you guess which one?

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Political Geography-The Road to 2012

I did this illustration for Northwestern University to help them promote a panel discussion about the election. The event was titled "The Road to 2012". They'd seen the POETRY magazine cover I posted on my website and liked that look. I changed the houses from familiar suburban ramblers and moderns into 21st century mansionettes shaped like red and blue states (choosing states with recognizable outlines––there are a lot of rectangles.) In the final version we added signs with the electoral college count for each, but I like the basic version, which is more conceptual and interesting for being less concrete. Raul Torres art directed.

Monday, October 8, 2012

The Original Immigrants

I did this image for the remarkable Patrick J. B. Flynn, for an education magazine article about how to rethink our teaching of Thanksgiving to America's schoolchildren. The natives who greeted and helped the early settlers were a trusting and generous people, and we Europeans didn't repay them very well. Something to think about on Columbus Day. Of course, till the day he died, Columbus thought he was stealing land and gold from the Chinese.